[tlhIngan Hol] *-moH* with verbs of state / quality

SuStel sustel at trimboli.name
Tue Nov 16 06:12:57 PST 2021

On 11/16/2021 8:05 AM, luis.chaparro at web.de wrote:
> Thanks to both of you for your replies! I still have a couple of questions:
> 1. I think the fact that I'm not an English native speaker is making this point a bit more difficult to me than it already is. If I understand it right, *vISay'nISmoH* means something like *I need to do something in order to keep the state of cleanliness of my hair*, i.e., *I need to do something that causes my hair to stay in a clean state*, so that's something we probably wouldn't say if our hair were really dirty? Maybe we're rather talking about *hair care* in a general sense?

Lacking *-choH* does not mean that a change of state does not take 
place; it simply means you're not expressing one. *Say'moH* doesn't mean 
/maintain being clean,/ although it might be used for that. It means the 
subject is the cause of being clean.

> 2. But if I want to cook and my hands are dirty, then the right thing to say would be: *vISay'nISchoHmoH*, wouldn't it?

I'd probably say it that way, yes.

*Say'nISmoH* means you need to be the cause of being clean. 
*Say'nISchoHmoH* means you need to be the cause of becoming clean. It's 
the difference between /being/ and /becoming./

> 3. And if we want to say something like *embellish*? This word can mean either going from ugly to beautiful or from beautiful to more beautiful. How could we account for this difference in Klingon?

In the right context, going from not-beautiful to beautiful could be 
expressed with *'IHchoHmoH.* If you just said *'IHmoH,* then the subject 
is the cause of the beauty but hasn't necessarily changed anything 
during the expression.

Going from beautiful to more beautiful? Probably *'IHqu'choHmoH.*

> 4. I'm afraid now I have again problems with this sentence: *yIbItHa'qu''eghmoH*. Shouldn't we use here *-choH*, since we are commanding someone to be the cause of her / his *changing* state from nervous to relaxed?

It's commanding you to be the cause of your being calm. /Cause yourself 
to be in a calm state/ instead of /Cause yourself to change to a calm 
state./ It's focusing on the end result, not the moment of change. We 
don't usually make this distinction in English, since commanding someone 
to /be/ something can mean to change to some state or to maintain some 

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