Expressing Thanks • Itar’es – Naat – Klem

Vulcans are not known for keeping a stack of thank-you notes in their desk drawer. They are very conservative when it comes to expressing thanks, but there are several ways to do this effectively in their language without upsetting  the pragmatic balance in conversation. Ri wa’pufai-tor Vuhlkantra na’ta potau n’tuh t’nop na’itar’es svi’zhis-nef t’sha-kitau-skaf. Satiben n’itar’es goh korsating – ki nam-tor pohl-renyut ik dau-boshing kup sagluvau bai’gen-lis t’au rik’ta svi-shau n’vo’ektaya t’paribaya.

ITAREN

The most common Vulcan word associated with the FSE concept of “thanks” is the verb ITAREN, which is based on the stem ITAR. The original meaning is closer to the concept of  “acknowledge” or “recognize” than it is to “show gratefulness”. Dan-tsuk-zhit ik katravah veh k’rata t’°thanks° svi’FSE nam-tor tor-zhit ik °itaren° ik nenam-tor zhit-gir ik ITAR. Tvesh-tvah weht-beik na’rata t’°nafai° il °naglanshaya° do °gluvaya t’klem°.
However, if prefixed with the adverbial intensifier WA’, even ITAREN takes on the feeling of gratitude. Ki, kuv ma n’rubitayek nosh-zhitik ik WA’, ruhm zhit ik ITAREN torvau n’cha’i t’klem.

Formal

Itaren nash-veh odu na’_______.

I thank you for _______.

Informal

Itaren.

Thank you.

Wa’paitaren du..

Thank you very much! (Lit. “You (are) very much appreciated!”)

Responses

The standard response is to give the most subtle nod or tilt of the head to indicate that one has understood the recognition. Or…

Malating.

Any time. (Lit. ‘naturally’ meaning “I did it in the normal course of things.”)

Veling.

Of course. (meaning, “Logically, it was the (correct) thing for me to do.”)

NAAT

A more traditional approach to thanking someone when a genuine feeling of appreciation is involved is to overtly state “respect”. This is especially the case when someone is being recognized for performing activities or duties extraordinarily. Weht-baik renyut na’lof itaren n’veh ish-wak ik tra’nam-tor yeht-cha’i tu’ashing satiben n’naat. Wa’nam-tor nash nuf ish-wak ik itaren n’veh na’toran il gu-vam ik fitor wehtsuring.

Formal

Cha’i t’naat.

Thank you. (lit. ‘sentiment of respect’)

Informal

Naat na’du.

Thank you. (Lit. ‘respect to you’)

Responses

Malating.

Any time. (Lit. ‘naturally’ meaning “I did it in the normal course of things.”)

Dan-neruk.

Most humbly. (meaning, “I humbly accept your recognition.”)

Veling.

Of course. (meaning, “Logically, it was the (correct) thing for me to do.”)

KLEM

The word KLEM is the closest in meaning to FSE “gratitude”. It implicitly contains references to the emotions of the grateful party and is heard very rarely in the normal course of Vulcan life. Zhit ik KLEM dan-kahkwa-tvah na’°gratitude° t’FSE. Ro’taning tuhlau n’dzhinaya na’zherka t’klem-bosh-veh eh puzhu-tor goh maut-ritsuring svi’ha’kiv-yumaya kanok-gadik t’Vuhlkantra.

Most Formal

Dan-neruk klem-bosh nash-veh na’_________.

I am most humbly grateful for __________.

Sanu — nar’voh neruk klem t’nash-veh.

Please, accept my humble gratitude.

Formal

Cha’i t’klem.

(I) Feel grateful.

Ek’klem na’odu

All gratitude to you.

Informal

Dan-klem-bosh..

(I am) Most grateful!

Responses

Formal

Itaren n’oklem.

(I) thank you for your honorable gratitude. (The FSE sentiment is “You’re very welcome.”)

Informal

Itaren.

The FSE sentiment is “You’re welcome.”

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12 Responses to Expressing Thanks • Itar’es – Naat – Klem

  1. T'Chelle says:

    Didn’t “Shaya tonat” mean “Thank You” when T’Pol said it on Enterprise?

  2. T'Chelle says:

    Never mind. I see “Cha’i t’naat.”
    You can delete that comment.

    • Briht’uhn says:

      oT’Chelle

      It’s a great question, but you found the answer! :-)

      Wa’itaren..

      • James Toth says:

        And a wonderful answer it was. I kept thinking it was “shaya tonat” also, because that is what I kept seeing from other Star Trek fans. I kept trying to figure out how “shaya” which means “break” – like in tal-shaya where a person’s neck gets broken – how that would fit into the concept of thank you. But when you change the “sh” to a “ch” that subtle little alteration makes it a whole new word… A wonderful solution to the problem. Also making tonat into t’naat was a great way to further enrich the meaning of thank you as expressed by T’Pol. I’d like to see what you do with other problematic Vulcan expressions from Enterprise. For example: how do you get Vulcans without Logic from V’tosh k’tur?

        • Briht’uhn says:

          oDzheimz,

          V’tosh k’tur is an interesting challenge to fit neatly into Golic Vulcan. TOSH is a discrete syllable in Golic Vulcan’s watosh|-|, “ugly”. TUR is more difficult to simply pluck out. V’ is not a productive prefix in Golic Vulcan, but it appears in v’hak (elegy), V’Shar (Security Force), v’yak (while), and the modern question word for who is vi. Romulan also has v’ in at least one rendering for v’ruul (fool). I’ve actually never seen ENT Fusion , I’ll have to check it out to come up with any more theories about what that v’ might be doing. Of course, V’tosh could simply be an ancient frozen form out of the Vulcan past along the lines of English’s “Samaritan”, where one must know a specific story to understand what it means in the present to be a “Good Samaritan”. V’Shar seems to point strongly in this direction. TUR could always be an old word for “illogic” or “recklessness” in which case the k’ could take on the role of English “with” as one might assume naturally.

          • James says:

            Some of the novels have words with the v’ prefix also.
            There’s v’asumi and v’shan which are Vulcan martial art forms. And there is v’ket and v’kor which are very much like v’shar. They are the Vulcan defense force and Vulcan police. I like your idea about k’tur meaning with illogic but it doesn’t seem to fit the situation in Fusion. I’d guess that “tur” means something more along the lines of “a rejection of logic – particularly that which leads one to the conclusion that Vulcans should suppress emotions.”

    • Hazhar says:

      oDzheimz,V’tosh k’tur is an interesting chneallge to fit neatly into Golic Vulcan. TOSH is a discrete syllable in Golic Vulcan’s watosh|-|, “ugly”. TUR is more difficult to simply pluck out. V’ is not a productive prefix in Golic Vulcan, but it appears in v’hak (elegy), V’Shar (Security Force), v’yak (while), and the modern question word for who is vi. Romulan also has v’ in at least one rendering for v’ruul (fool). I’ve actually never seen ENT Fusion , I’ll have to check it out to come up with any more theories about what that v’ might be doing. Of course, V’tosh could simply be an ancient frozen form out of the Vulcan past along the lines of English’s Samaritan , where one must know a specific story to understand what it means in the present to be a Good Samaritan . V’Shar seems to point strongly in this direction. TUR could always be an old word for illogic or recklessness in which case the k’ could take on the role of English “with” as one might assume naturally.

  3. James says:

    Oh yeah, I like that you brought up the connection between tosh and watosh. If tosh means something like objectionable, or offensive, then wa’tosh would mean “particularly objectionable or offensive” and could be translated “ugly”. watosh might just be the same word without the apostrophe. I was thinking the v’ prefix might just be a sort of abbreviation for Vuhlkan, which is used on some words. A lot of these prefixes with no apparent meaning might be abbreviations for some other words. Anyway, it might mean that V’tosh simply means objectionable or offensive Vulcans. So going by all this, V’tosh k’tur might literally mean something like “objectionable Vulcans who reject the logic of suppressing their emotions”

    • Briht’uhn says:

      That’s interesting. I’ve never thought of the apostrophe prefixes as “abbreviations” per se, but I’ve never had the discussion with anyone, so they really could be anything. I still haven’t seen Fusion, but as long at V’tosh is not used to reference all Vulcan’s in general, this seems very plausible.

  4. T'Mynn says:

    A very good discussion here.
    I looked at some ancient Vulcan and noticed when I compared words on Ogen to it,the words were.longer. They had more vowels,soft sounding letters such as ‘h’s', these may be doubled,as would some vowels,or ‘Ls”. Ogen,these same words have the extra letters cut off,making it a contraction . Its possible V’tosh is one of these contractions. It may have been written orginalky as”vhaahhtosh”. Only a theory. If you wish,I can put up a few words as examples.

    sT’Mihn

    • Briht’uhn says:

      oT’Mihn —

      Most of the lexicon in V’______ seems to be older. There are many Romulan words that also begin this way, but they are very uncommon in Modern Golic Vulcan.

      It’s always nice to theorize…

  5. T'Mynn says:

    Many languages actually do this. They make contractions of words onto something simplistic. Although in a few languages the contraction might not make sense to a non speaker unless they are familar with the culture and reason for the word or phrase shortening.

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