"The ships are orbiting the planet."
Translation:yuQ lubavtaH Dujmey.
I am utterly failing at working out the correct word order at the moment. How do I know whether to put lubavTaH or Dujmey first in this sentence? It seems that sometimes it translates roughly as a word order of 'Planet, they are orbiting, ships' but on other occasions it seems to translate in the order of 'Planet, ships , they are orbiting'. I just can't figure out it out and I'm so frustrated as I'm getting everything wrong today!
The word order is very specific and important in Klingon and should not be variable. If it seems variable to you, then you have not yet grasped how the word order works. We want to help you understand, so please post on every sentence where the word order doesn't match what you thought it should be.
In the English sentence, "The ships are orbiting the planet," the verb (the action) is "orbiting" which would be bavtaH. The words in front of the verb in Klingon are the objects (the things that the action is being done to), so yuQ will go first. The ships are doing the action and they are doing it to the planet. So to pick the prefix, we need a plural subject and a singular object, that's lu-. Since "the ships" are doing the action, Dujmey will go after the verb.
If you have multiple nouns in front of the verb, then they are all part of the object(s) and not the one(s) doing the action. So, yuQ Dujmey je bavtaH would mean, "they are orbiting the planet and the ships". Or yuQ Dujmey bavtaH would mean, "they are orbiting the planet's ships." You might also see something like, yuQDaq Dujmey bavtaH "They are orbiting the ships at the planet." Etc. But if it's the ships doing the orbiting, they should definitely go after the verb in Klingon.
Thank you so much. I think this will really help. You're right, I'm just not grasping the order. I'm fine on the shorter less complicated sentences and then it starts falling apart. I'm going to try and make this into some kind of reference chart. In fact, I don't suppose you know whether there is such a thing a a Klingon word order reference chart in existence do you?? Have a lingot for your patience and time. :)