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  5. "ngengDaq Sut Say'moH ghaH."

"ngengDaq Sut Say'moH ghaH."

Translation:He cleans the clothing in the lake.

December 8, 2019

14 Comments


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

First, the tense is not present in Klingon, so so the English could just as easily have been He will clean, or He cleaned right?

Secondly, in English, (especially if the tense is not present) the phrase is ambiguous. He could have cleaned the clothing that is found in the lake, or he could have used the lake to clean the clothing. As best as I can tell, the Klingon ngengDaq specifically applies to the verb, in this case Say'moH.

This would mean the English He cleaned the clothing [that is] in the lake is a bad translation?

And that if we'd want to say that, then we'd need to translate it something like ngengDaq bIH Sut 'e' Say'moH ghaH?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Qov-jIH-je

Your first point is correct: past, present, and future tenses are all accepted for the English translation of this sentence.

You are correct that ngengDaq does not bind specifically to Sut but rather to the action of the sentence. All we know from the Klingon is that clothing gets cleaned and the action happens in a lake. He cleans the clothing in the lake is a fine translation. You're free to speculate as to whether the clothing was brought by the Say'moHwI' or was floating around the lake when ghaH arrived. If I really wanted to express that ghaH cleaned clothing that was already in the lake, I would phrase the Klingon differently, just as you would have to phrase the English differently.

If you really want to describe a situation where someone finds some clothing in a lake and decides to clean it, then describe that explicitly. Try translating, "He discovered clothing in a lake and then he washed it." Your proposed sentence doesn't work, because Sut is an 'oH, you've forgotten an -'e', and most significantly you're trying to force 'e' to perform a function it doesn't.


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

My guess is that mIQey actually intended that 'e' to be the suffix, not the pronoun and that what is really missing is a -bogh: ngengDaq 'oHbogh Sut'e' Say'moH ghaH ("He cleans the clothing that is in the lake.") The need for 'oH (as a verb) to have a connection (an object or location) seems to lock the lake into being the location of the clothing, rather than of the washing, which seems to have been mIQey's goal.


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

I did not intend the 'e' to be the suffix, although I should have done that too. I intended to say The clothes were at the lake. That is what he cleans. So that would have been ngengDaq bIH Sut'e' 'e' Say'moH ghaH? (I really want to put a period after the -'e', is that acceptable?) Or are only certain verbs allowed to use 'e', like Qub?


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

Note that the 'e' pronoun does not refer to some thing from the preceeding sentence, but rather to the sentence itself. So, your sentence says something about "cleaning the being of clothes at the lake". If you want to use one of the nouns from a full sentence as a noun in another sentence, that is the purpose of -bogh. -bogh turns a full sentence into a noun phrase that can then be plugged in anywhere that a noun could go. nuq Say'moH ghaH ("What does he clean?") ngengDaq bIHbogh Sut'e' is what he cleans. ngengDaq bIHbogh Sut'e' Say'moH ghaH.


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

I really like the usage of -bogh here. I guess somehow I forgot about -bogh when I learned about 'e' (the pronoun). How would I know when to use -bogh and when to use 'e'? Perhaps 'e' refers to an entire sentence, and -bogh applies to a partial sentence, like he cleaned clothes that... ? I didn't write that very well, because I haven't really solidified the concept in my head yet.


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

-'e' makes the whole previous sentence the object of the following sentence:
ngengDaq Sut tu' ghaH. 'oH Say'moH 'e' vItul. ("He found clothing at the lake. I hope he washed them.")

-bogh turns a full sentence into a noun phrase:
Sut tu'. ("He found clothing.")
Sut tu'bogh ghaH ("the clothing he found")

Note that some sentences have two nouns and it can be hard to tell which noun the the phrases is really about.
Sut tu'bogh HoD can mean either, "the clothing that the captain found", or, "the captain that found the clothes. This can be distinguished by putting a type 5 noun on the "head noun". If you don't already need a type 5 suffix, you can use the -'e' suffix. If you are already using a type 5 suffix, put it on the head noun:
Sutmo' tu'bogh HoD "because of the clothing that the captain found"
Sut tu'bogh HoDvo' "from the captain that found the clothing"
Sut'e' tu'bogh HoD "the clothing that the captain found"
Sut'e' tu'bogh HoD Say'moH ghaH. "He cleaned the clothing that the captain found.

The sentence that I had suggested you might have meant only had one noun in the -bogh phrase, so a type 5 is not needed to clarify. For example, using tu':
Sut'e' tu'bogh Say'moH ghaH. "He cleaned the clothing that he found."

But the -'e' suffix is required because of the pronoun 'oH being used as a copula:
ngengDaq bIHbogh Sut'e' Say'moH ghaH. "He cleaned the clothing that was at the lake."


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

First, the tense is not present in Klingon, so so the English could just as easily have been He will clean, or He cleaned right?

This is true, but with limits. Not every phrase in the past tense in English can take a bare Klingon verb and say it works for the past. Sometimes a sentence is talking about something that is being described as done, in which case it requires a Klingon perfective suffix. If you leave off a perfective or continuous suffix, it means the action described is not perfective or continuous.

He cleaned the clothes in the lake can mean a couple of different things. It can that one day he took some clothes to the lake and cleaned them. It can mean it was his habit or job to clean the clothes in the lake in the past.

The first of these, where it's a particular instance of cleaning that you're talking about, you need to use one of the perfective suffixes: -pu' or -ta'. -pu' means the action is completed; -ta' means the action is deliberately undertaken and completed.

ngengDaq Sut Say'moHpu'
He cleaned the clothes in the lake.

ngengDaq Sut Say'moHta'
He accomplished cleaning the clothes in the lake.

The second of these, where it's a habit or a job, would be translated ngengDaq Sut Say'moH, as presented by the lesson.

And, as you have noticed, Klingon verbs don't show when they happen, so past, present, and future are all valid if you lack context:

ngengDaq Sut Say'moHpu'
He cleaned the clothes in the lake. (A completed instance of cleaning.) He will have cleaned the clothes in the lake.

ngengDaq Sut Say'moH
He cleaned the clothes in the lake. (A general fact, perhaps a habit or job.)
He cleans the clothes in the lake. (Either a general fact or describing being in the middle of the act.)
He will clean the clothes in the lake.


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

Secondly, in English, (especially if the tense is not present) the phrase is ambiguous. He could have cleaned the clothing that is found in the lake, or he could have used the lake to clean the clothing.

The Klingon suffix -Daq can mean in, on, at, to, or by, referring to locations. (This is not an exhaustive list of prepositions.) ngengDaq might be in the lake, on the lake, at the lake, to the lake, or by the lake.*

So there is no direct implication in the sentence that the lake was used to wash the clothes, only that the lake was the location, in some way, of the washing.


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

Ah yes, I see I wasn't clear. I'm trying to make a different distinction than the one you're making here. The Klingon statement in the question means, He cleaned the clothes. The location the cleaning took place was the lake. I'm trying to get a simpler translation of There was clothing in the lake. That is what he cleaned. My current best attempt is, ngengDaq bIH Sut'e' 'e' Say'moH ghaH, but it seems like maybe I can't use the 'e' pronoun with Sut?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Qov-jIH-je

Notice that when you want to make it really clear in English what you are talking about, you break the thought up into two sentences. Do that in Klingon. By all means learn how to use -bogh and 'e' well, but just as French and German naturally sustain longer sentences than English, without sounding ridiculous, Klingon sounds perfectly natural and no choppy if most sentences are short.


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

Oh, so perhaps I should just say, ngengDaq bIH Sut'e'. bIH Say'moH ghaH.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Qov-jIH-je

While clothes are them in English, Sut is 'oH in Klingon.


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

But it could be Sutmey (multiple changes of clothing?), with an omitted -mey? (to be honest I wasn't sure, but if Sut is pluralizable in Klingon, it's safer to use bIH. Perhaps it's not pluralizable though.

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