[tlhIngan Hol] can the object of the {-meH} be the subject of what follows it ?

nIqolay Q niqolay0 at gmail.com
Wed Oct 16 13:52:15 PDT 2019


On Wed, Oct 16, 2019 at 3:46 PM SuStel <sustel at trimboli.name> wrote:

> I understand how the English means that; I don't see how the Klingon means
> that.
>
Simple: It means that, because Okrand has been using that Klingon
construction to mean that. Either the Klingon sentences that use it are
wrong, including the most famous Klingon aphorism, or he is using an
additional meaning of *-meH*, besides "in order to", that he hasn't talked
about. Until someone asks him about it, we're left to deduce its usage and
meaning from the examples we have. I can think of four at the moment:

   1. *qIpmeH Qatlh'a'** Difficult to hit?* (ST5)
   2. *Heghlu'meH QaQ jajvam **Today is a good day to die.* (TKW)
   3. *tlhutlhmeH HIq ngeb qaq law' bIQ qaq puS* *Drinking fake ale is
   better than drinking water.* (TKW)
   4. *QaQ qeylIS Duj / ghe'tor 'elmeH / yapbe' may' 'e' Sovchu'* *Kahless
   knows by instinct / A fight will not suffice / To enter the land of the
   dead.* (PB 96-96)

>From the translations, we know that these constructions are intended to
discuss the subject's suitability for achieving the purpose in the purpose
clause. So this must be another use of purpose clauses, even if we don't
know the details. It's still being used to talk about purposes, just in a
different way, so it's possible he didn't think of it as a special case of
purpose clauses that he needed to discuss explicitly.
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