A Quick Reference to Adverbials in Klingon

The following is a list of all the regular adverbials in Klingon.

Klingon English Source
batlh honored, with honor, honorably, honorable, well [TKD, TKW]
batlh­Ha’ dishonorably [TKW, KGT]
bong accidentally, by accident [TKD]
chaq perhaps, maybe [TKD, TKW]
cha’­logh twice [TKD]
chIch purposely, on purpose, intentionally [TKD]
DaH now [TKD]
Do’ luckily, with luck [TKD]
Do’­Ha’ unfortunately [KGT]
ghay­tan likely [TKDa]
ghay­tan­Ha’ unlikely [Radio Times]
ghIq and then, after that, by then, subsequently [HQ 8:3]
Hoch­logh all times, always (emphatic) [KGT]
jaS differently [TKDa]
loQ slightly, a little bit [TKD, TKW]
motlh usually, typically, as expected [KGT]
nI­teb alone, acting alone [TKDa, TKW]
nI­teb­Ha’ together [BoP]
nom fast, quickly [TKD, TKW]
not never [TKD, TKW]
ngugh then, at that time [News 1999-11-05]
pagh­logh zero times, never (emphatic) [KGT]
pay’ suddenly [TKD]
pe’­vIl forcefully, by force [TKDa, TKW]
pIj often, frequently [TKD, TKW, KGT]
pIj­Ha’ seldom, infrequently [KGT]
qen recently, a short time ago [News 1999-03-02]
QIt slowly [TKD]
reH always [TKD, TKW]
roD customarily, habitually, regularly [KGT]
rut sometimes, occasionally [TKD, TKW, KGT]
SI­bI’ immediately [TKDa]
ta­gha’ finally, at last [News 1999-11-05]
tugh soon [TKD]
tlhoS almost, nearly, virtually, not quite [KGT]
tlhoy overly, to an excessive degree, too much [HQ 8:3]
vaj so, then, thus, in that case [TKD, TKW]
wa’­logh once [TKD]
wej not yet [TKD, TKW]

Most commonly adverbials are come at the very beginning of a sentence (though occasionally an adverbial can be preceded by other stuff, such as a time element). [TKD 5.4, TKDa 6.7]

nom Sop­pu’They ate quickly.
DaH­jaj nom Sop­pu’Today they ate quickly.

Adverbials are also quite commonly used as exclamations, and then work sentences in their own right. E.g.: wej Not yet! (Don’t do it yet!), nom Come on! Quickly!, nI­teb Alone! (Do it by yourself!) [TKD 5.4]

And, finally, if an object is topicalized with the -’e’ suffix, then the adverbial can come after the object noun. [TKDa 6.7]

Haq­wI’ yI­SamFind the surgeon!
DaH Haq­wI’ yI­SamFind the surgeon now!
Haq­wI’­’e’ yI­SamFind the surgeon!
Haq­wI’­’e’ DaH yI­SamFind the surgeon now!

There are also two special adverbials (jay’ intensely and neH only) that, syntactically, work differently than the rest of the adverbials.1

Klingon English Placement Source
jay’ intensely (invective) At the end of a sentence [TKDa 5.4]
neH only, merely, just Follows a verb or noun it modifies [TKD 5.4, TKW]

jay’ is always placed last in the sentence an has the effect of intensifying it.

tI­bachShoot him!
tI­bach jay’Shoot him, goddamnit!

When neH comes after a verb it has the effect of trivializing it.

vI­qIp­pu’I hit him.
vI­qIp­pu’ neHI merely hit him.
Duj yI­QotlhDisable the ship!
Duj yI­Qotlh neHOnly disable the ship!

The use of neH in the previous example implies that the ship should be disabled, but not damaged further.2

Alone among the adverbials neH can also be used to modify the meaning of a noun, it then comes after the noun, and means only, alone.

yaS neHonly the officer, the officer alone
jon­ta’ neHjust the engine

Finally adverbials to indicate repetitions are created using a number plus the suffix -logh. This is not limited to the examples in the above list (wa’­logh once and cha’­logh twice), but may be used creatively with any number:

vI­bach­pu’I shot him/her.
wa’­logh vI­bach­pu’I shot him/her once.
cha’­logh vI­bach­pu’I shot him/her twice.
wa’­maH­logh vI­bach­pu’I shot him/her ten times.
loS’­maH cha’­logh vI­bach­pu’I shot him/her forty two times.

There are also two adverbials which may be viewed as special cases of -logh. These are pagh­logh zero times, never (from pagh meaning nothing or zero) and Hoch­logh all times, always (from Hoch meaning all or every). These mean the same thing as not never and reH always but carry extra emphasis.

not vI­bach­pu’ I never shot him/her.
pagh­logh vI­bach­pu’ I did never shoot him/her!

And that concludes this quick reference to adverbials.

1 There is also the word je (also, and, too) which, although it is considered a conjunction rather than an adverbial, it is used in a similar fashion to neH. Both je and neH can be used after either verbs or nouns (though je follow one or more nouns, and neH a single one).

qa­ma’ vI­bach neH The only thing I did was to shoot the prisoner.
qa­ma’ neH vI­bach The prisoner was the only one I shot.
qa­ma’ vI­bach je I shot the prisoner too.
qa­ma’ ’av­wI’ je vI­bach I shot the prisoner and the guard.

2 When neH only is used with he or she as subject, it can be hard to distinguish it from neH want. Extra pronouns or puctuation can then usually be used to clarify the meaning.

qa­ma’ vI­bach vI­neH I want to shoot the prisoner.
qa­ma’ vI­bach neH He wants me to shoot the prisoner
or I only shot the prisoner.
qa­ma’ vI­bach neH jIH I only shot the prisoner.
qa­ma’ vI­bach neH ghaH
or qa­ma’ vI­bach, neH
He wants me to shoot the prisoner