[tlhIngan Hol] can we use the noun {ghom} for objects ?

Will Martin willmartin2 at mac.com
Fri Oct 18 06:31:29 PDT 2019

Klingon nouns have gender differentiated by meaning rather than convention. A noun is a being capable of using language, a body part, or Everything Else.

French assigns masculine or feminine to each noun, generally making male beings masculine and female beings feminine, and neuter objects arbitrarily assigned masculine or feminine, and the gender assignment is inflexible enough that French dictionaries always show you the gender as part of the word entry for the noun.

Note that in Klingon, you don’t have universal agreement over whether or not birds that can be taught to mimic speech are considered beings capable of using language, or whether computers and robots that can speak are considered beings capable of language. There are the general conventions, and then there are exceptions, like Commander Data. A Klingon speaker may very well refer to all such birds as {-mey}, yet for their own personal pet, they might refer to it as {-wI’} instead of {-wIj} and nobody is likely to pull out a ruler to rap their knuckles for their grammatical error.

It’s also worth noting that Okrand doesn’t mark gender with his glosses of nouns.

My vote is that if {ghom} is the group-word for trees that makes the most sense to you, then {Sor ghom} should be fine. If we get a better group-word for non-speech-being objects, then we may eventually prefer to use that, but I don’t think that {ghom} will ever be wrong.

charghwI’ vaghnerya’ngan

rInpa’ bomnIS be’’a’ pI’.

> On Oct 18, 2019, at 9:08 AM, mayqel qunen'oS <mihkoun at gmail.com> wrote:
> We have the noun {ghom} which is given as "band, group, party".
> Can I use it in reference to inanimate objects, or is it to be used only for people/humanoids, etc ?
> Can I say {Sor ghom} for "a group of trees" ?
> ~ bara'qa'
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