1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Klingon
  4. >
  5. "jImaw''a'? HISlaH. bImaw'."

"jImaw''a'? HISlaH. bImaw'."

Translation:Am I crazy? Yes. You are crazy.

May 16, 2019



Is that like a double glottal stop? Whats the grammatical reason here?


Klingon has a very limited list of consonant clusters (-rgh, -w', and -y') so anytime you see three consonants together, look for one of those allowed clusters - in this case -w'. So the syllable breakdown of that word is jI-maw'-'a' and the qaghwI' is only doubled because those two syllables are adjacent.


Is that like a double glottal stop?

Yes, exactly.

Whats the grammatical reason here?

The same as for the double letters in "thinness" or "tailless": one letter is from the word stem, the other from the ending.

maw' is "be crazy".

The yes-no question affix is -'a'.

Put them together and you get maw''a', with one ' from maw' and one from -'a'.

If you left out one glottal stop, you'd be changing the word: bImaw'a'? would mean "do you offend?", based on maw "offend" rather than on maw' "be crazy".


I'm uncertain with these sentences (I've seen variations on this several times). Is it supposed to be like: "Yes I'm crazy, but so are you"; or turning it aroud as a "Why yes, YOU are quite crazy now that you mention it"; or a threat of "Yes I am, and you know what's even crazier? You confronting me about it, and thinking that would be SAFE" insert threatening body language here. Sorry, I'm just afraid I'm missing something cultural/contextual here.


Nothing sinister about the sentences. Just a way to practise sentences, and also to disambiguate whether "you" refers to one person or to several (depending on whether "you" corresponds to "we" or to "I"), since that makes a difference in Klingon -- so that you practise both sets of prefixes.


Been awhile, but here's a late thank you.

It turned out (your reply helped me realize) that for some reason my brain on some of the sentences didn't want to acknowledge that it was a question - response - response and instead thought it was just one complete sentence (only some of them though, like this one. Others I realized the context of question - response - response correctly for some reason).

Brains are weird


My brain does the same thing, I have to keep remembering that there are two people discussing here


The Duolingo staff have mentioned a desire to create mini-dialogue exercises. Not an actual plan, as far as I know, just a desire at this point. If they're actually working on it, I don't know. But it is at least on their wish list. And ours too, obviously.

Learn Klingon in just 5 minutes a day. For free.