[tlhIngan Hol] Noun marked with {-'e'} at the beginning of the sentence

Jeffrey Clark jmclark85 at gmail.com
Mon May 13 09:33:27 PDT 2019


I think it can also be used for clarity, such as signalling a change in topic (since the subject comes last in Klingon), or to help navigate a longer sentence where the context of the subject is helpful up front.

We can see a similar thing in English where we can use the mutability of it word order and multiplicity of verb constructions to shift word around and convey the same information. It’s a subtle emphasis change, but it is an emphasis change:

“De’vID gave SuStel the bat’leth, but he gave the disrupter to qurgh.”
vs.
“De’vID gave the bat’leth to SuStel, but the disrupter was given to qurgh.”
vs.
“The bat'leth was given to SuStel by De’vID, but the disrupter he gave to qurgh.”

By choosing to alter the proximity and order of presentation, we can subtly shift the emphasis while the information conveyed remains the same. This is (painfully) easy in English. Klingon is far more ridged in word order.

SuStelvaD betleH nob De’vID, ‘a qurghvaD nISwI’ nob
De’vID’e’, SuStelvaD betleH nob, ‘a qurghvaD nISwI’ nob (Calling attention to the fact that it was De’vID who gave SuStel a bat’leth)

One also wonders if the following might also be valid, since the -‘e’ topicaliser could (my conjecture) serve to contextualise an indicated pronoun from a verbal prefix:

betleH’e’, SuStelvaD nob De’vID.

Buuuuuuuut, I doubt that’d be acceptable without clarification from Okrand.

—jevreH

> On May 13, 2019, at 12:03, mayqel qunen'oS <mihkoun at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
> SuStel:
> > It's because pronoun sentences already  
> > have a correct form, with the topic at the  
> > end.
> 
> ok, I see.
> 
> So, pronoun sentences aside, what would your opinion be with regards to the following sentences ?
> 
> {tlhInganpu''e', maHvaD Dujmeychaj nojQo'}
> as for the klingons, they refuse to lend us their ships 
> 
> {tlhInganpu''e', qajatlhpu', maHvaD Dujmeychaj nojQo'}
> as for the klingons, I've told you, they refuse to lend us their ships 
> 
> {tlhInganpu''e', maHvaD Dujmeychaj nojqang net jalchugh, vaj QangvaD langmeH mIw vImuch}
> as for the klingons, if they were willing to lend us their ships, then I would present for the chancellor a thinning program.
> 
> Are the above wrong ?
> Are the above correct ?
> or..
> Are the above correct, *only* if I want to emphasize ?
> 
> SuStel:
> > And it's fairly clear from TKD that another  
> > normal application of the rules is to add  
> > noun phrases to the fronts of sentences  
> > when their syntactic roles are known, 
> > whether by suffix or by their identification as  
> > time expressions.
> 
> By "identification as time expressions" you mean something like the following ?
> 
> {cha'leS ram, vIghro' tIQ wIquvmoH}
> the night of day after tomorrow, we honor the ancient cat 
> 
> De'vID:
> > Nobody has said that you can't? It's 
> > grammatically valid. It just doesn't mean  
> > what you want it to mean.
> 
> Now, you lost me..
> 
> Lets remove the ambiguity, of whether its singular of plural, by writing: {vIghro'mey tIQ'e' novmey bIH}. Would you accept this to say "as for ancient cats, they are aliens" ?
> 
> SuStel:
> > I've got no problem with that. mayqel wasn't 
> > translating something with emphasis.
> 
> So, as I understand, if I wrote:
> 
> {vIghro'mey tIQ'e' novmey bIH}
> as for ancient cats, they are aliens 
> 
> Then this is correct and acceptable *only* if I want to translate something with emphasis, right ?
> 
> SuStel:
> > I've got no problem with that. mayqel wasn't 
> > translating something with emphasis.
> 
> So, if I understand correctly, at the Ca'Non phrase {qIbDaq SuvwI''e' SoH Dun law' Hoch Dun puS}, the translation isn't actually "as for (a) warrior(s)..", but rather "as for (A) WARRIOR(S)..". It is formulated this way (with the {-'e'} marked noun), for emphasis.
> 
> right ?
> 
> ~ m. qunen'oS
> let the Ca'Non flow through you
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