[tlhIngan Hol] Beginner's text and questions

Steven Boozer sboozer at uchicago.edu
Fri Jul 23 12:36:02 PDT 2021

Since Luis is wondering about {Sum}, here’s a Q & A between Marc Okrand (MO) and Will Martin (WM) from HolQeD (Dec. 1998: pp. 9-10) :

    MO: Using the verbs {Sum} and {Hop} involves this concept [of deixis].
    WM: So I could not say {raSvam vISum} to say, “I am near the table”.
    MO: No. You'd just say {Sum raS}.  The verb {Sum} implies that the speaker is the one the subject is near at the time of speaking. {Hop jabwI'}. “The waiter is far from me right now. “
    WM: Well, that resolves the conflict otherwise created if they could take objects.   It keeps them stative, so you can say, {HIvje' Sum yItlhap}.
    MO: Yes.
    WM: Otherwise, they'd be the only verbs we'd sometimes use as adjectives and other times use transitively.
    MO: Take an object. Yes.
    WM: So, could that deictic anchor be shifted by using an indirect object? Like if I wanted to say, “You are near the table”, could I say {SoHvaD Sum raS}?
    MO: No.  You'd use {-Daq}:  {SoHDaq Sum raS}.  This throws the orientation away from the speaker (unmarked, unstated) and to the listener (marked, stated: "at you, where you are").  But you don't always need to state this overtly.  Context is critical.  For example: {qagh largh SuvwI' ghung. Sum qagh 'e' Sov.} “The hungry warrior smells the gagh. He/she knows the gagh is nearby.”  The only interpretation of this (absent other information) is that the warrior knows the gagh is near the warrior, not the warrior knows the gagh is near the speaker of the sentences. If context isn't clear, you can clarify:
         Question:   Sum'a' raS?                                      Is the table near (me)? (Am I near the table?)
         Answer:     HIja'. Sum raS.                                 Yes. The table is near (you).
         Answer:     ghobe'. jIHDaq Sum raS.               No. The table is near me.
    WM: And could I say {maSumchuq}?
    MO: No.  You'd just say {bISum} or {SuSum}.  If you haven't, in the course of the conversation, set things up otherwise, it's assumed that the event being talked about is taking place where the speaker is. In fact, {jISum} alone probably would make no everyday sense to a Klingon.  “I am near me.”  But it does have an idiomatic philosophical sense, something like “I'm in touch with my inner self”  (but in a Klingon sort of way, of course).

Here’s another note from Okrand:
(qurgh < MO, qep’a’ 2017):  [{Hay} “area beyond” is] normally used with a point of reference: beyond X.  When asked about “area nearby” Maltz wasn’t sure what was being asked and said to make use of the verb {Sum} “be nearby”.

Here are more examples of {Sum}:

  Sum Daqmeyvam, tera'ngan
   These places are nearby, Terran. (CK)

  SumchoH mangghom 'Iw largh
   The army closes in, smelling blood. (PB)

  Daq SumHa'vo' wab Huj Qoylu'
   Strange sounds come from afar (PB)

  pIvghor yIchu' 'ej Duj Sumqu' yIjaH
   Warp to the nearest vessel. (MKE)

  pIvghor yIchu' 'ej HoSHal Sumqu' yIjaH
   Advance to the nearest energy source. (MKE)

  yuQ SumDaq cha'puj law' Datu'
   Detect large sums of dilithium on nearby planet. (MKE)

And finally, there’s a near synonym {Daq HopHa’} “[a place] not far away” from the paq’batlh :

   Daq HopHa’Daq qa’chaj nejlI’ qotar Qempa’QeH je
   Not far away, Kotar and his Qempa'keh, are in search for their souls. (PB)


From: SuStel

On 7/23/2021 3:08 PM, luis.chaparro at web.de<mailto:luis.chaparro at web.de> wrote:

I don't want to bother you, but in my last post I also asked about how to say *from Africa, Europe also seems to be near*. Since you haven't say anything about that, does it mean that my original sentence (*'avrI'qa'vo' Sumlaw' je 'ewrop*) was right?

To say from X, Y is near, you say XDaq Sum Y. It can be interpreted literally: at location X, Y is nearby.



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