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  5. "That warrior always defends …

"That warrior always defends his home and he is willing not to travel."

Translation:reH juHDaj Hub SuvwI'vetlh 'ej lengbe'qang.

October 31, 2018



I hadn't seen this compound sentence in a while and, trying to follow the prescribed OVS word order, I wrote "reH juHDaj Hub 'ej lengbe'qang SuvwI'vetlh." Is this not acceptable in Klingon?


It is a grammatically correct sentence and roughly has the same meaning as the given English sentence. However there are a couple problems with it.

It is good style to introduced the subject as early as possible. Though Klingons are used to waiting to hear who the subject is, it is not the best form to introduced a bunch of information about the subject and continue to hold the identity until the last possible moment. There are two verbs here that have the same subject - that means there are two OVS opportunities - and it is better style to tell us who that subject is on the first verb than on the second one.

In addition, this is two sentences joined by a conjunction (in both English and Klingon). If we take each sentence separately, the first English sentence is the one that expresses the subject and the second one uses a pronoun. The same should be true in the Klingon sentences (except that the null prefix covers the pronoun, so there is no need to use an explicit pronoun, though it would be accepted).


But note that this isn't so much a "rule" as a "good idea." There are times when Klingon do, in fact, delay the introduction of a subject or object through multiple clauses.

In GENERAL, you should introduce your noun before referring to it with a pronoun, even an elided pronoun. But it's not grammatically incorrect to do otherwise.

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