[tlhIngan Hol] info from paq'batlh that's not really new

De'vID de.vid.jonpin at gmail.com
Fri Jun 24 02:45:53 PDT 2022

There were a couple of issues with or questions about things in the 1st
edition of the paq'batlh that people had sent to me, which did not result
in changes in the 2nd edition or any really new information.

I don't want to go through the whole book saying "this didn't change, and
this didn't change also...", but these particular topics came up in a
discussion I was having with Lieven, so I might as well share them with the


{ghe'tor vegh Duj / Suto'vo'qor lojmitmey 'ej Duj}
"The Barge went through Gre'thor / Into the gates of Sto-vo-kor"

Previously, we'd been told that {vegh} means to go through an opening of
some sort, like a door or tunnel, but not going through a forest. The issue
was whether going through Gre'thor isn't like going through a forest.

The explanation is that this usage of {vegh} is fine, because earlier in
the chapter, it said that "They set sail over the Blood River / To
Gre'thor, or so Kahless thought." So {ghe'tor vegh Duj} means that the
Barge went through Gre'thor as if it were merely an opening or passage to
Sto-vo-kor. The role of Gre'thor is as an opening to get to somewhere else.
So in context, this usage of {vegh} actually makes sense. There's another
place in the paq'batlh where {DIS} "cave" is the object of {vegh}. Kahless
goes through the cave to reach the world beyond the living. Again, this is
fine, for the same reason.

The point of the "tunnel" and "forest" examples when the word was
originally given was that the object of {vegh} is an opening one passes
through to get somewhere, not that those specific things can and can't,
respectively, be the object of {vegh}. If someone enters a tunnel to
explore it, spending a lot of time there wandering around to collect rocks
or bugs or something, and comes out the other end by happenstance, it isn't
{vegh}. If there's a tunnel-like path made by trees in an otherwise dense
forest and one goes through it to reach the castle in the middle because
that's the way to get there, that can be {vegh}.

Whenever Dr. Okrand gives an example to illustrate how something can and
can't be used, it always implies "typically" or "generally" or "usually",
because of course one can find exceptions in atypical cases. One typically
goes through a tunnel to reach the other end in a straightforward way; one
typically goes through a forest in a meandering way.

There are a couple of usages of {vegh} with {lojmIt[mey]} in the paq'batlh,
and these are obviously fine and uncontroversial.

{je}, {'ej}

{SanlIj DanarghlaHbe' / chalqachDaq bIQaDbe' je}
"You cannot escape your fate, / Even in a tower you are not safe!"

In TKD, it says that when {je} follows a verb, "The exact meaning is
determined by context". The example it gives illustrates ambiguity in the
subject and object. However, we already knew that it's more expansive than
this, as SkyBox card 2 {SuvwI' taj} had the following: {ghop luQan
tajHommey. pe'laH je.} "the small knives protect the hands; they can also
cut". In the paq'batlh sentence, it's doing the same thing: "you cannot
escape your fate; in a tower you are also not safe". The use of "even"
instead of "also" is just because it's a more natural expression in English.

{qatlh Sutamchu' tlhIH / SuvwI'pu' Hem boghIjlu''a' / tlhIH je qanra'
puqloD pejatlh}
"Why are you all silent? / You, proud warriors, are you afraid? / And you,
sons of Kahnrah, speak up!"

This usage of {je} is implicitly conjoining two nouns, namely {tlhIH}
(referring to {SuvwI'pu' Hem}), and {tlhIH} (referring to {qanra' puqloD}).
It's a bit complicated but It mirrors the English "you... and you", with
other things in between.

There are a number of places in the paq'batlh where the English has
"And..." and the Klingon doesn't have {'ej...}, or vice versa. But this is
fine when the meaning is clear. Translation isn't always so exact and
literal, and involves other things like what flows better in each language.

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