[tlhIngan Hol] expressing baby animals

SuStel sustel at trimboli.name
Mon Nov 29 06:07:07 PST 2021

On 11/29/2021 8:46 AM, mayqel qunen'oS wrote:
> jIH:
>> {vIghro'-ghu}
> SuStel:
>> In English, the hyphen used this way represents a genitive relationship
> SuStel:
>> Oh, hunter-killer isn't genitive. That's a different kind of relationship.
> Initially, I couldn't understand when a noun-noun construction is to
> be interpreted as a genitive relationship, and when as something else.
> So I thought of the following:
> When a noun-noun construction makes sense if one read it as "noun 2 of
> noun 1" then it represents a genitive relationship, but when reading
> it as "noun 2 of noun 1" doesn't make sense then it's something else.
> So, the {vIghro' ghu} is genitive since it makes sense for it to be
> read as "baby of a cat", but the "hunter-killer" is something else
> since it makes no sense understanding it as "killer of the hunter".
> Would you agree with this approach?

No. The Klingon noun-noun construction is always genitive. When one noun 
modifies the meaning of another noun, that's genitive. That's true 
whether you translate it "noun 2 of noun 1" or "noun 1's noun 2" or 
"noun 2 made of noun 1." What's important is that noun 1 is modifying 
the meaning of noun 2. That's what makes it a genitive relationship.

The phrase /hunter-killer/ does not contain a genitive. /Hunter/ does 
not modify /killer,/ and /killer/ does not modify /hunter./ The entire 
phrase /hunter-killer/ is used genitively to modify the word /probe,/ 
but that's not important here. The phrase could also have been written 
/hunter/killer;/ the hyphen is not important to the meaning here. It's 
just a shortcut to saying /and./ The probe hunts and the probe kills. It 
does both these things, so we're going to stick the two words together a 
bit sloppily and call it a hunter-killer probe. That's all this means.

*vIghro' ghu'* is a noun-noun construction, which means they're in a 
genitive relationship. It's a *ghu.* What kind of *ghu?* A *vIghro'* 
kind of *ghu.* It's a *Hol.* What kind of *Hol?* A *tlhIngan* kind of 
*Hol.* It's a *pegh.* What kind of *pegh?* A *nuH* kind of *pegh.* And 
so on.

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