What exactly is the difference between 'batlh' and 'quv'?

September 14, 2019


Okrand has reported that our official Klingon informant Maltz says the quv/batlh distinction is a Klingon matter that humans aren't expected to understand, but says that quv is a sort of personal honour, the kind over which, by one's behaviour, one has some control. This sort of honour is earned, can be bestowed on one, and is associated with reputation, dignity, and respect.

batlh, on the other hand, is a grander, more general, more philosophical concept, associated with integrity, rectitude, scruples, and principles.

That's a lot of words. I think the last sentence of each paragraph sums it well. When you're looking for a noun...

quv - reputation, dignity, and respect.

batlh - integrity, rectitude, scruples, and principles.

If you're looking for a "be" verb, only quv works. If you're looking for an adverb only batlh works.

Touché. Another way of looking at it might be that you can lose or gain quv through outside forces, but you alone hold responsibility for your batlh.

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