[tlhIngan Hol] Suffix-number questions in the KLCP test

Lieven L. Litaer levinius at gmx.de
Mon Nov 25 22:41:58 PST 2019

Am 25.11.2019 um 18:48 schrieb mayqel qunen'oS:
> However, I *do* believe, that unless someone is a real native klingon,
> he can't learn the language, if he can't remember what type of suffix,
> each suffix actually is.

It is possible to learn a language without knowing its grammar, that
counts for any language.

For instance, one could learn that in addition to {poSmoH} there is the
phrase {poSnISmoH}. If you memorize both expressions, you learn the
correct word order, without knowing the suffix type as a number. If I
now add {poSmoHlaH} and drop the {-moH} you get {poSlaH}. Everyone will
know that adding {-nIS} will result in {poSnISlaH} (ignore whatever that
means). This still follows the grammatical order of suffixes, WITHOUT
using any numbers. You only know that {-nIS} is less than {-moH}, but
{-laH} is higher.

This is how children learn grammar from their parents, but also how
foreigners learn a language when they move to a different country (and
don't take classes). They hear what people say and adapt the grammar,
without knowing anything about it. If those foreigners take a test, they
are asked to translate "Where is the restaurant?" but not "What is the
simple past progressive for of 'I walk'?"

Lieven L. Litaer
aka the "Klingon Teacher from Germany"

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