[tlhIngan Hol] 'op after the noun

mayqel qunen'oS mihkoun at gmail.com
Thu Jul 16 05:38:39 PDT 2020


The {'op} is defined as "some, an unknown or unspecified quantity",
and in the Ca'Non example of Skybox 7 it is used as {'op SuvwI'} i.e
in front of a countable noun which doesn't have the plural suffix. The
relevant part of that sentence is:

{DujvamDaq 'op SuvwI' tu'lu'bogh po' law' tlhIngan yo' SuvwI' law' po' puS}

Suppose we say {'op na'ran Soppu' qeSHoS}. Then this could mean either
"the fox ate some/an unspecified quantity of an orange", or "the fox
ate some/an unspecified quantity of oranges".

Perhaps one could argue that based on the Ca'Non example of the Skybox
7, "the 'op before a singular noun is to be interpreted as referring
to a plural number of that noun". But I don't know if one could argue
that, since in this Ca'Non example, interpreting the {SuvwI'} as being
singular is impossible. Because, if interpreting the {SuvwI'} as being
singular was possible, then that would mean that "the klingon vessel
pagh has some/an unspecified quantity of a warrior", i.e. on the pagh
happen to serve some of the most skilled legs/arms/DaynguHDu'/whatever
of a warrior in the klingon fleet.

Of course in star trek everything is possible, on the other hand
though, I think that one could come to the following conclusion with
regards to the {'op}:

Placing the {'op} before a countable noun which has no plural suffix,
could mean either "some, an unknown or unspecified quantity of that
noun (singular)" or "some, an unknown or unspecified quantity of a
number of that noun". While placing the {'op} before an uncountable
noun can only mean ""some/an unspecified quantity of that noun
(singular)".

Of course, I don't know for sure if this conclusion would be correct..

But now let's get back to the fox..

If I write {'op na'ranmey Soppu' qeSHoS}, then this obviously means
""the fox ate some/an unspecified quantity of oranges". But my problem
is that this is ambiguous in the following way:

Did the fox walk in the house, find an unspecified quantity of oranges
and ate them all ? Or did the fox walk into the house, found 40
oranges and ate some of them ?

And if the fox indeed ate only some of the oranges, then why not write
{na'ranmey 'op Soppu' qeSHoS} ? After all, we *can* write {pItSa'
HochHom Soppu' vIghro' tIQ} for "the ancient cat ate almost all of the
pizza".

~ Qa'yIn


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