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  5. "jIyajbe', mara."

"jIyajbe', mara."

Translation:I don't understand, Mara.

June 4, 2018

6 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TNobre87

I have a question here. I wrote "Mara, I don't understand", is that absolutely wrong or is it a possibility as well? I ask because I've seen earlier on that in some sentences the name comes last in Klingon, but first in English. Thanks!


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

I wrote "Mara, I don't understand", is that absolutely wrong or is it a possibility as well?

We want students to keep things in the same order that they were in the original, unless there is a linguistic / grammatical reason for a changed word order.

In particular, we do not want learners to think that Klingon can simply be read from the end to the beginning.

As such, we expect "Mara, I don't understand" for mara, jIyajbe' but "I don't understand, Mara" for jIyajbe', mara.

I ask because I've seen earlier on that in some sentences the name comes last in Klingon, but first in English.

That shouldn't happen. If you happen to come across such a sentence again, please post a note on the corresponding discussion page.

We try to be consistent on this, but sometimes we slip up. Or it could be a very old sentence from before we decided to be stricter on word order.

But for consistency, we try to keep things in the same order where possible.


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

Or perhaps you're thinking of the times where the person named is not being called, but is the subject or object of the sentence. In those occurrences there IS a grammatical reason to change the order:
mara vIyajbe' would mean, "I do not understand Mara."
yajbe' mara could mean, "Mara does not understand him."

In those examples, the order does seem to switch since Klingon and English use different orders for the subject and object of the sentence. We have tried to be consistent in the course in using a comma to separate a called name, like in this exercise. If you see a called name where the order is reversed, then that is when you should notify us. Please also notify us if you are still confused about this or come across anything else that you could use clarification on.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TNobre87

That's absolutely it. Thank you very much, I believe this to be the origin of my confusion. And god, I must congratulate you two. In half an hour I received two very good explanations to my question. :)


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

Yes; this is a known issue -- see the sticky post in the Klingon forum "what to report and what not": https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/26778885

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