[tlhIngan Hol] Klingon Word of the Day: qay

Steven Boozer sboozer at uchicago.edu
Thu Jan 21 07:25:08 PST 2021

Klingon Word of the Day for Thursday, January 21, 2021

Klingon word: 	qay
Part of speech: 	verb
Definition: 	use the second (middle) finger
Source: 	HQ:v10n2p7

AFAIK never used in a sentence.

(HQ 10.2: pp.7-9):   [ ... ]the word {nItlh} "finger" means any finger, including the thumb. A hand has {vagh nItlhDu'} (five fingers), not {loS nItlhDu'} (four fingers) and a thumb. 
     There is a specific word referring to each of the five fingers, and these words are nouns derived from verbs by means of the suffix {–wI'} (thing which does); there are two pairs for thumb. The Federation Standard translation of the verbs is a little strained, but they mean something like use (the specific finger). The associated 'finger nouns' would be literally, though quite awkwardly, "thing which is used in a thumb-like manner" or perhaps "thing which thumbs" or even "thumber"; "thing which is used in an index finger-like manner"; and so on. The verbs and the associated nouns are:  {Sen} use the thumb, {SenwI'} thumb;  {rIl} use the thumb, {rIlwI'} thumb;  {SIq} use the index finger, {SIqwI'} index finger, first finger;  {qay} use the second finger, {qaywI'} second finger;  {qew} use the ring finger, {qewwI'} ring finger, third finger;  {qan} use the pinkie, {qanwI'} pinkie, little finger. [ … ]
     The "finger verbs" are used when talking about specific ways of using a particular device (weapon, computer control panel, even musical instrument) or when describing specific ways to use fingers (as in movements in some martial arts). {…} When used with nouns with the locative suffix {-Daq}, the finger verbs mean "point (with a specific finger) at or towards". [ … ]
     There are some special uses of the reflexive forms of the finger verbs. For example, while {ghIchwIj vISIq} means "I touch my nose with my index finger" and {ghIchwIjDaq jISIq} means "I point at my nose with my index finger", the phrase {ghIchwIjDaq jISIq'egh} (with {-'egh} oneself), literally "I use at myself my index finger at my nose", is used for {I pick my nose with my index finger}.  Similarly, {nujDajDaq rIl'egh ghu}, literally "at his/her mouth, the baby uses at him/herself his/her thumb", is used for "the baby sucks its thumb".

PUN:  Cf. Lake Cayuga, one of the Finger Lakes in New York state. 

MNEMONIC:  In Anglo-American culture, sticking your middle finger up at someone is an insult; so if you were to {qay} someone, it could be a problem {qay'}.  (taD)

Heng 		finger holes in a musical instrument (v)
'uy 		press down (v)
ngoH		smear; for paint using fingers (v)

Voragh, Ca'Non Master of the Klingons
    Please contribute relevant vocabulary from the last year or two. I’ve fallen 
    behind in updating my files and adding cross-references for related words.  

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