[tlhIngan Hol] lightning lightning bolt and {pe'bIl}

mayqel qunen'oS mihkoun at gmail.com
Tue May 25 04:45:58 PDT 2021

(st.klingon 11/1997):
> Speakers who do this seem to be aware that they are breaking the rules,
> so they are doing it for rhetorical effect. (It has the same sort of
feeling, perhaps,
> as if someone were to say in English … “It's lightninging and thundering

What is this "this" which speakers do?

> pe'bIl tIH 'oH wa' zeus DI'on''e'
> one of the characteristics of zeus is the lightning ray/beam
> FWIW, I read your Klingon sentence before your English translation,
> and I took {tIH} to mean "shaft (of spear)", as though the lightning were
> a physical weapon which is hurled like a spear, which is pretty much what
> Zeus does with a lightning bolt.

I like this alternate translation, since after all this is what Zeus seems
to do; i.e. throw the lightning as a spear.

However, I'd like to take this opportunity to say, that one of the things
in Klingon I dislike (and when I say dislike, I mean hate), is when
multiple meanings are shoved on a single word.

If I say {muD Qun ghaH zeus'e'}, then what do I mean? "Zeus is a god of
weather", or "Zeus is a god of the atmosphere"?

Now, yes, even in natural languages this can happen/happens, but the tools
one has in a natural language (vocabulary + grammar) give him ways to make
things clear. Let alone the fact, that in natural languages there are so
many synonyms for a number of words. So one can simply choose another

Of course, being on this list for almost 6 years, I know/expect that
someone will say "context will clarify". But I don't think that a reader is
obligated to read an entire paragraph each time the clarification could
easily be made, if only we hadn't received a billion different meanings for
a single word.

~ Dana'an
*zeus is, zeus was, zeus will be; o great zeus!*
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