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

De'vID de.vid.jonpin at gmail.com
Tue Apr 5 15:29:34 PDT 2022

On Tue, 5 Apr 2022 at 17:06, SuStel <sustel at trimboli.name> wrote:

> On 4/5/2022 10:52 AM, Will Martin wrote:
> I don’t think we should assume that {jIj} isn’t a pair of homophones, one
> of which can be used adjectivally.
> This is also effectively how I see it, even if a Klingon grammarian might
see it differently.

> It's entirely possible. The example in question doesn't make it clear one
> way or another. *woQ luSuqmeH jIjpu' chaH romuluSngan'e' je.* Again, it's
> a bad data point, and shouldn't be used to draw any conclusions on this
> matter.
> (I'll note that the English translation, *work with Romulan factions,* is
> not stative or a quality, so this sentence is unlikely to be the source of
> the later *be cooperative* gloss for *jIj.*)
It might be helpful to look at the chronology of how the word was defined
and used.

TKD (1992) has {jIj} "cooperate" in the K-E side word list. It's missing
from the E-K side, which has {yeq} instead. It also has {yuQjIjQa'} "United
Federation of Planets" in the K-E word list, but {yuQjIjDIvI'} in the E-K
one. The K-E word list has {DIvI'} "federation, organization" (lowercase)
while the E-K side has "Federation" (uppercase) as the definition for
{DIvI'}, while {Qa'} is "type of animal" in the K-E side and appears listed
with other animals under "animal: different types of animal" in the E-K

SkyBox card #26 (1996) has the above sentence with {jIjpu'}, translated as
"work with [Romulan factions]". It's clearly not a verb of quality here.

KGT (1997) has {reH jIj} "always be cooperative" in the body (p.159) and
{jIj} "be cooperative" in both K-E and E-K word lists.

Whether one treats {jIj} as two homophones, one meaning "cooperate" and one
meaning "be cooperative", or as one word with two senses, in the sentence
{jIjpu' chaH romuluSngan'e' je} on the SkyBox card, it's clearly being used
with the "cooperate" meaning. The sentence says that they and the Romulans
cooperate (with each other), not that they are being cooperative.

So this can't be used as an example of {-pu'} on a verb of quality. The "be
cooperative" meaning didn't exist yet, whether it's considered the same
word or a homophone, and even if it's the same word, the instance of its
usage to which {-pu'} was applied clearly has the "cooperate" meaning.

I think it's clear based on what's in TKD that Okrand changed his mind
several times on how to translate "United Federation of Planets" while
writing TKD, before he finally settled on {DIvI'}. The introduction of
{jIj} to mean "be cooperative" was probably to retrofit the meaning of
{yuQjIjDIvI'/Qa'}, i.e., to give it an etymology after the fact.

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