1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Klingon
  4. >
  5. "raS Sum vIjaH."

"raS Sum vIjaH."

Translation:I go to the nearby table.

January 4, 2020



How would be "I go to the table (so that I will be near the table)"?


raS vIjaH I go to the table.


SummeH raS vIjaH.


I don't believe the parenthetical part of DarthGandalf's sentence was meant to be translated; it's there to clarify what he means. However, if we want to translate I go to the table so that I will be near it, it would best be translated as:

raSDaq jISummeH vIjaH

raSDaq jISum I am near the table (literally, At the table, I am nearby)
raSDaq jISummeH In order that I am near the table
vIjaH I go to it.

SummeH raS vIjaH means something like I go to the table in order that (something) is near (something). jISummeH raS vIjaH is better, but it still only means I go to the table in order that I am near (something).


While I agree that your suggestion is more explicit, I disagree that it is somehow more legitimate. From one of Will's interviews with Dr. Okrand (HQ 7.4, p.10):

WM: So I could not say raSvam vISum to say, "I am near the table."
MO: No. You'd just say Sum raS. The verb Sum implies that the speaker is the one the subject is near at the time of speaking.

Thus, SummeH raS vIjaH is somewhat vague and can have other meanings like you suggest, but is also perfectly understandable as either, "So that the table is near, I go to it," or, "So it is near, I go to the table."

And for the learners here, Will clearly erred in his suggestion. First, he included -vam in his example, but not "this" in his translation. But more importantly, he probably should have said raSDaq jISum, which I agree is also a legitimate sentence, as David has written above. When Dr. Okrand objected to Will's sentence I think he was objecting to the use of raS as a grammatical object on Sum, not the use of Sum to say "It is I who is near the table" over his own suggestion of "the table is nearby (me)."


Ah, I didn't see the breakdown of your sentence: SummeH raS, vIjaH. I read it as SummeH, raS vIjaH. What a difference a bit of punctuation makes.


SummeH, raS vIjaH is also a legitimate way to say it, but admittedly the most open to misinterpretation and as I wrote it I was, infact, thinking of it as SummeH raS, vIjaH, which, I will admit, still leaves a lot open to interpretation.

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