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  5. "baS DubwIj boch yIchop!"

"baS DubwIj boch yIchop!"

Translation:Bite my shiny metal back!

June 28, 2018



I haven't quite groked the ordering of nouns. I understand why boch is ordered as it is, but I want to order baS similarly, with the main noun first DubwIj baS, "my back's shiny metal". Otherwise it seems to me like the metal possesses my back.


Obviously "bite my shiny metal back"side, or something like that, to misquote Bender from Futurama. Pity {Sa'Hut} seems to not be covered in this course.

When the first noun of a noun-noun is a material, it's generally just interpreted as the material the other noun is made of like a "metal ass".

Also an optional way to interpret noun-nouns is from right-to-left with ofs. e.g. {ghav 'uSqan yoD} could be said to be a "shield of steel"


Noun-noun constructions are what is known grammatically as genitive. The last noun is the head noun and the thing you're talking about. The previous noun is the modifier: it narrows the sense of the final noun.

Let's take a simpler expression for clarity, and one I like to trot out for this very reason: baS 'In metal drum. The head noun is 'In; the object we're talking about is a drum, not a piece of metal. The baS narrows down the sense of what we're talking about: what kind of drum is it? It's not just any drum; it's a metal drum.

'In drum
baS 'In metal drum

DubwIj my back
baS DubwIj my metal back
(It's not baSwIj Dub because the thing that is mine is not the metal; it's the back.)

This can be a little confusing, because the noun-noun construction is also the possessive function. Possessive (one noun owns or has another noun) is a type of genitive function.

HoD Duj the captain's ship

We're talking about a Duj ship, not a HoD captain, because Duj is the head noun. It is narrowed by the previous noun in that it's not just any ship; it's the ship owned by or associated with the captain.


Thank you, that was a very clear explanation!

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