[tlhIngan Hol] Klingon Word of the Day: yItlhHa'

De'vID de.vid.jonpin at gmail.com
Mon Mar 25 23:54:52 PDT 2019

On Tue, 26 Mar 2019 at 05:35, Ed Bailey <bellerophon.modeler at gmail.com>

> On Fri, Mar 22, 2019 at 5:28 AM De'vID <de.vid.jonpin at gmail.com> wrote:
>> If you think about it, while {-Ha'} can mean both "undo" and "do
>> wrongly", it doesn't really make sense for it to be possible to have both
>> meanings on the same verb. If it did, then how would I know if you meant
>> "be unmotivated" or "be wrongly motivated" (be motivated but in a bad way,
>> or for the wrong reason)? How would I say that the judge has commuted
>> ({wuqHa'}) my sentence, rather than that he had wrongly decided upon my
>> sentence (a rather important legal distinction)? Of course, language *can*
>> be ambiguous, but in this case, I think the dozens of examples from canon
>> strongly suggests a pattern. I think this is one of those cases where TKD
>> offers a bare sketch, but we actually have a lot of canon examples to
>> justifiably derive something which is almost a rule.
> I like your inferred rules for *-Ha'*, but allow me to suggest a
> qualification. Perhaps, rather than an unambiguous interpretation, a verb
> plus *-Ha'* has a strongly preferred interpretation that follows the
> pattern you lay out. The listener who isn't being deliberately obtuse will
> reject any other interpretation unless the speaker gives cues to indicate
> it. This would be rather like intentional ungrammaticality. Wouldn't it
> make more sense to understand *mu'mey Dajatlhpu'bogh DajatlhHa'laHbe'* as
> "You cannot *unspeak* words you have spoken" rather than *misspeak*?

Yes, that would be how I read that sentence.

That sense of {jatlhHa'} (undo speaking), that is, "taking back one's
words", reminds me of {nobHa'}, which bothered me when I first encountered
it. In the {nobHa'} example, {Huch nobHa'bogh verenganpu''e' yIvoqQo'}, the
giver isn't the one undoing the giving; the recipient is. Before that
example, I might've used {tlhapHa'} in that sentence instead of {nobHa'},
or at least been undecided between them.

I wonder if {jatlhHa'} in the "undo" sense could work in the same way? That
is, would this make sense: {mu'mey Dajatlhpu'bogh *vI*jatlhHa'laHbe'}?

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