[tlhIngan Hol] {qempa'QeH} is a fossilised form

De'vID de.vid.jonpin at gmail.com
Thu May 26 21:59:17 PDT 2022

p. 145: {nItlhej qempa'QeH} → what is plural of qempa'QeH?

This isn't an error, but just something I wanted to know out of curiosity.
As I understand it, the plural of {qempa'} is the inherently plural (but
grammatically singular) {no'}. (Correct me if I'm wrong about this.)
{qempa'QeH} looks like it originated from {qempa' QeH}. So if one were to
pluralise {qempa'QeH}, would the plural be *{no'QeH}? Or is it a fossilised
form? In that case, could one say {qempa'QeHpu'} or would it be
{qepma'pu'QeH}? (I assume the plural suffix would be {-pu'} and not {-mey}
because {qempa'QeHlI'} (not {-lIj}) is used on p.109).

>>> {qempa’QeH} is indeed a fossilized form, so don’t worry about its
etymology (though you are correct about {no’} vs. {qempa’}). Generally
speaking, you wouldn’t pluralize {qempa’QeH}. The word doesn’t refer to an
individual, but to a unique group, the “proudest spirits of Gre’thor” (p.
108). There aren’t two groups of proudest spirits. I suppose you could
write a story about the mirror universe where the {qempa’QeH} of one
universe encounter the {qempa’QeH} of the other, so there would be two
{qeppa’QeH}s. In that case, I’d go with {-pu’}. But otherwise, the plural
isn’t likely to come up.

(end of message)

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