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  5. "Where is Mara's robot?"

"Where is Mara's robot?"

Translation:nuqDaq 'oH mara qoq'e'?

March 31, 2018

3 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

So... about the apparent optionality of -taH on the copula. My understanding was always, that it's optional with big, immobile things like houses, planets, countries, as opposed to people, animals, and things that can actually move, where it makes more sense to ask about their current whereabouts.

So, in this sentence I'd have used 'oHtaH for that reason, unless that robot is a huge, building-sized machine (like a factory) that cannot be moved away from there.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DavidTrimb3

I have refrained from commenting on the continuous suffix, or lack thereof, on "to be" pronouns, because we have no expressed rules for its use and there seems to be little pattern. "Optional with big, immobile things" is just one person's hypothesis of what happens with it (and one I, for one, don't remember hearing before). The course creators' strategy here seems to be to use it both ways without comment. I don't really see a better alternative.

Side note: I'm not sure I see why you call the "to be" pronoun a clitic.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

Oh, it's been mentioned a few times on the mailing list that -taH is added when the thing or person is frequently found in different places, and perhaps less needed when it's about something that doesn't move, like buildings or rooms. But fair enough, if the course creators want to reflect the inconsistent use of the suffix on clitics. But then they should also allow both versions of the Klingon sentence with or without -taH.

Sorry, slip of the tongue (or finger). Not clitic of course, but copula. I'll correct my comment above. Thanks.

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