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Month: January 2017

What was Nick Nicholas’ process to translate Hamlet into Klingon?

By: | Post date: 2017-01-31 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Artificial Languages

I thank you for the question, ’erIq qaDye qaH! I’ll answer a bit more broadly than your details ask, but I may get a big vague; it was after all 20 years ago. I learned Klingon in 1994. I had enough arrogance and free time, that I knew I’d be the one to write the […]

What does the “S” above the ICXC mean?

By: | Post date: 2017-01-31 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Mediaeval Greek, Writing Systems

It’s not an S, per se; you’ll usually see it as just a bar, or a semicircle. Zeibura S. Kathau unearthed an instance that looked like a capital omega. It’s an abbreviation marker: Ι͞Ϲ Χ͞Ϲ is an abbreviation of IHϹΟΥΣ ΧΡΙϹΤΟϹ. The convention is particularly prevalent for Nomina sacra, divine names and titles. Here’s Wikipedia’s […]

What are some examples of onomatopoeia in your language?

By: | Post date: 2017-01-31 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Linguistics, Modern Greek

Modern Greek. I’m going to list indeclinable, straight iconic words, as opposed to the far larger set of inflected words with an onomatopoeic etymology (like zuzuni for bug or platsurizo for to splash). bam bang, dan ding dong, apsu < Turkish hapşu sound of sneezing, kix cough, xrats scratch, drin ring ring, ksu shoo, prits […]

How did those unworthy Terran petaQ manage to plagiarize Shakespeare so many years before first contact?

By: | Post date: 2017-01-31 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Artificial Languages

Lucky you, OP, because I wrote the introduction to The Klingon Hamlet, and translated the verse of the play (or rather, in-universe, I was editorially involved in the Terran edition of the play Tragedy of Khamlet, Son of the Emperor of Kronos, by Wil’yam Shex’pir, and translated the introduction). And the introduction pays glancing mention […]

Are ήρθε and ήλθε interchangeable? Is there a difference in meaning?

By: | Post date: 2017-01-31 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Linguistics, Modern Greek

No difference in meaning. ήλθε is the archaic form. ήρθε is the vernacular form, and represents a regular sound change in the modern language. ήρθε is now the unmarked verb form. If you use ήλθε, you will come across as speaking in Puristic (Katharevousa); 100 years ago, that made you be educated, 50 years ago, […]

Why does reconstructed Proto-Indo-European seem so cumbersome to pronounce?

By: | Post date: 2017-01-30 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Linguistics, Other Languages

As ever, Daniel Ross’s answer is so thorough and well thought out (Vote #1 Daniel Ross’ answer to Why does reconstructed Proto-Indo-European seem so cumbersome to pronounce?), that it is embarrassing for me to attempt a better answer. In fact, I won’t: I’ll offer a worse answer, but one that is actually hinted at in […]

What is “liar, liar pants on fire” in latin?

By: | Post date: 2017-01-30 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Latin, Linguistics

What we’re actually looking for is a Latin proverbial expression that means what the English means. And the English has nothing to do with inflammable pants at all: it just says “Hah! caught you lying!” I noodled around latin Via Proverbs. The closest I get are: Mendacem memorem esse oportet. A liar should have a […]

Do you speak Klingon, and why did you choose to learn it?

By: | Post date: 2017-01-30 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Artificial Languages

Federation Standard, eh, English translation follows: HIja’, tlhIngan Hol vijatlhlaH. qaStaHvIS wa’maH DIS, jIQummeH Hol vIlo’, ’ej SeQpIr lutmey vImughta’. qatlh vIghojmeH vIwIv ’e’ choyu’, tlheybura qatlhaw qaH. reH jIHvaD Daj Holmey ’oghlu’bogh. ghojmeH ngeD chaH, ghojchu’lu’meH DuH tu’lu’, ’ej Hol mIwmey waHlaH. maSterS vIHaDtaHvIS, HolQeD qaD lIngpu’ ghojwI’, tlhIngan Hol lo’taHvIS. jIHvaD chu’ Hol. […]

Why are there so many languages in the world?

By: | Post date: 2017-01-29 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: General Language, Linguistics

Originally Answered: Why are there several languages in the world? Firstly, because we are not even sure that there was monogenesis of language. That is, we are not sure whether language originated in a single contiguous community of humans, or multiple communities. Second, because like all social phenomena, language is a dynamic system subject to […]

How does it feel for Greek kids when they learn their alphabet is an important part of maths?

By: | Post date: 2017-01-29 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Modern Greek, Writing Systems

The other answers are correct, but the question goes to something broader. Greek kids will sooner or later find out that a lot of mathematical and scientific symbols used in other languages are Greek, just as they find out that a lot of scientific vocabulary in other languages is Greek. How do they feel? Unsurprised. […]

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