[tlhIngan Hol] thoughts on the perfective {-pu'}

Will Martin lojmitti7wi7nuv at gmail.com
Tue Apr 5 09:09:18 PDT 2022

Just to clarify, if I wanted to say, “I was sick last week,” meaning that all week, I was sick, I’d say {Hogh vorgh jIroptaH}. I wouldn’t say {Hogh vorgh jIroppu’} unless I meant that I started getting sick last week, I was sick for a while, and I stopped being sick, all within the boundary of last week.

That perhaps brings up a condition that makes {-pu’} sensible on a stative verb. If the Time Stamp has a duration that completely contains the duration of the stative verb, I now see that this could make sense, given the model of the perfective as being an action (or state) that is “compressed” into the moment of its cessation, so the reference is to the cessation, not the duration.

If the context was my awareness that you were gone all last week and I ask you why you are here now, you might reasonably answer {Hogh vorgh jIroppu’.} If, instead, I asked why you were gone last week, it might make less sense, since my question has less to do with the cessation of your illness than with the duration and your answer would not have addressed my question.

Am I getting warm yet in terms of my understanding of the Perfective?


charghwI’ ‘utlh
(ghaH, ghaH, -Daj)

> On Apr 5, 2022, at 11:13 AM, Iikka Hauhio <fergusq at protonmail.com> wrote:
> I disagree that quality verbs cannot describe events.
> If we look at:
> Hogh vorgh jIQongpu'
> Hogh vorgh jIroppu'
> In both cases, I'm looking back to two events: my sleep and my illnesss, both of which I consider as completed wholes, without inner structure. They were two events that happened last week. Sleeping and being ill are both biological conditions that my body has. Both only last for a certain period of time. Both can be described as events. It's a grammatical feature of Klingon that ghu rop is accepted and ghu Qong is not, but semantically they don't differ much.
> Iikka "fergusq" Hauhio
> ------- Original Message -------
> On Tuesday, April 5th, 2022 at 18.00, SuStel <sustel at trimboli.name> wrote:
>> On 4/5/2022 10:23 AM, Iikka Hauhio wrote:
>>> I don't automatically take every gloss that starts with be as proving a quality verb, so I'm not convinced jIj is one.
>>>>>> jIj is used in yuQjIjDIvI' etc. where it seems to be used adjectivally (Union of cooperative planets). As it's a compound we cannot be sure that its components can be used individually, but it's some evidence for jIj being a quality verb.
>> I said it was a bad data point, not that I have judged it to be not a quality verb. Don't read more into my words than what I said.
>>> It should be noted that the "be cooperative" meaning was given after the "cooperate" meaning. I don't see why to publish this new gloss unless the reason was to clarify that jIj indeed can be used as a quality verb.
>> That's possible. But given the initial gloss, that makes jIj a bad data point for the question of using perfective on quality verbs.
>>> As for using perfective with the quality verbs, I don't see why they'd work any differently than other intransitive verbs. Why would jIQongpu' "I was asleep" be allowed, but jIQuppu' "I was young" not? Just as sleeping is a completed event, being young is also a completed event. I was young, I can look that as a completed whole.
>> For the same reason that you can say ghu Qup but not ghu Qong. Sleeping is an event; being young is not an event. Being asleep is a state. The issue is more complicated for Qong, because in English sleep is an event and be asleep is a state. jIQongpu' would be most accurately translated as I slept and would be used in a context of looking back at a point where I engaged in the single act of sleeping, whose flow over time is compressed. jIQong would be most accurately translated in the past tense as I was asleep and would be used in a context of describing my state at a particular point in the past.
>> Anyway, the point here is that there is a dearth of perfective on quality verbs in Klingon that may be significant. I'm not saying outright that you can't put perfective on a quality, but I am saying that it may be unusual and probably doesn't mean what you think it means. If you're thinking that it means that at some point in the past the subject had the quality and that point is over now, that's not using perfective correctly. That's just past tense. By using perfective on a quality, you're saying that the expression of the quality includes not only the quality but the completion of the quality, all in one "moment" (however long a moment is in context).
>> --
>> SuStel
>> http://trimboli.name <http://trimboli.name/>
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