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  5. "jey' Sorpuq 'un Dapupchugh, …

"jey' Sorpuq 'un Dapupchugh, ghaytan qamlIj ghor."

Translation:If you kick a bronze pot, it will likely break your foot.

October 23, 2018

3 Comments


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

This is a sentence that Klingon schoolteachers would tsk-tsk at, since you're switching the subject and dropping the pronoun without ever specifying what the new subject is. Sure, you can figure out what means, but it's poor form.

Furthermore, the English sentence is deceptive. The it in the English refers to the act of kicking, not the pot. Sure, you can understand the it as referring to the pot if it helps, but that's not really where the English is coming from.

A better Klingon sentence might be:

jey' Sorpuq 'un Dapupchugh, ghaytan qamlIj ghor 'un.
If you kick a bronze pot, the pot will likely break your foot.

Klingon doesn't mind the repetition.

Another way to say it would be:

jey' Sorpuq 'un Dapupchugh, ghaytan qamlIj Daghor.
If you kick a bronze pot, you will likely break your foot.

Because, let's face it, the pot isn't actually doing the breaking here.


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

shouldn't this be "ghaytan ghor qamlIj" or "qamlIj ghorlu'" or something like that?


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

The examples we have of ghor show it being used transitively with the subject doing the breaking and the object being broken. ghor qamlIj would mean, "your foot breaks it". qamlIj ghorlu' could work in some situations, but seems odd in this case since we know what is breaking "your foot"; the subject is not indefinite. You could repeat the name of the thing doing the breaking: jey' Sorpuq 'un Dapupchugh, ghaytan qamlIj ghor jey' Sorpuq 'un. Or you could use a pronoun: jey' Sorpuq 'un Dapupchugh, ghaytan qamlIj ghor 'oH. But since the absence of a prefix (or as we like to call it, the presence of the null prefix) indicates that the object is third person (he/she/it/they), neither is really necessary and the normal assumption should be that we are talking about the bronze pot doing the breaking.

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