Author Topic: Trying to understand the Na'vi dialog from the movie  (Read 914 times)

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Offline kaltxi Angtsik

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Trying to understand the Na'vi dialog from the movie
« on: October 07, 2010, 11:51:54 pm »
Kaltxi, ma tsmukan si tsmuke -

I've been going through the record of the Na'vi dialog from the movie http://wiki.learnnavi.org/index.php?title=Na'vi_from_Avatar_Movie and cross referencing it with the dictionary to try to learn something. It's nice to be able to listen to the Na'vi dialog in the movie and begin to understand the words.

There are a couple of things that I wanted to ask about -

First of all, in the scene just before Jake is brought to home tree for the first time, Neytiri says to Tsutey:

"Aungia lolu! Tsahiku txele lu!"  (There has been a sign! This is a matter for the tsahik)

It appears that adding a -u suffix to tsahik makes it something like a genitive: "of, or pertaining to, the tsahik" righ? but I don't see any explanation for that. I've looked through the list of prefixes, infixes and suffixes in the dictionary and couldn't find a -u suffix. Where am I going wrong?

Secondly, the scene where Eytukan is unhappy that "this creature" (Jake) had been brought to home tree. He says to Neytiri:

Poltxe oe, san zene kea uniltìranyu, ke ziva'u fìtseng. (I said, no dreamwalker must not come to this place)

In English a double negative is a positive. But in Na'vi it appears that a double negative just makes a stronger negative. Is this true?

Thanks for any pointers you can give this poor skxawng.







« Last Edit: October 08, 2010, 12:47:53 am by kaltxi Angtsik »
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Offline 'Oma Tirea

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Re: Trying to understand the Na'vi dialog from the movie
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2010, 11:56:00 pm »
"Aungia lolu! Tsahiku txele lu!"  (There has been a sign! This is a matter for the tsahik)

It appears that adding a -u suffix to tsahik makes it something like a genitive: "of, or pertaining to, the tsahik" righ? but I don't see any explanation for that. I've looked through the list of prefixes, infixes and suffixes in the dictionary and couldn't find a -u suffix. Where am I going wrong?


There was a pronounciation goof in the movie :P  The quote is really Tsahìkur txele lu.*

[img]http://swokaikran.skxawng.lu/sigbar/nwotd.php?p=2b[/img]

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Offline kaltxi Angtsik

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Re: Trying to understand the Na'vi dialog from the movie
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2010, 12:45:21 am »

There was a pronounciation goof in the movie :P  

The quote is really Tsahìkur txele lu.*


Ah, that makes perfect sense. Thanks for clearing that up.

Hmm, is Neytiri saying "sawtute" and not "tawtute" another such example?

« Last Edit: October 08, 2010, 12:53:31 am by kaltxi Angtsik »
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Offline 'Oma Tirea

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Re: Trying to understand the Na'vi dialog from the movie
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2010, 12:59:32 am »

There was a pronounciation goof in the movie :P  

The quote is really Tsahìkur txele lu.*


Ah, that makes perfect sense. Thanks for clearing that up.

Hmm, is Neytiri saying "sawtute" and not "tawtute" another such example?



That is not actually a pronounciation goof.  Whenever the Na'vi say "sawtute", they are saying a short form of "ay+sawtute".  This confused me for a while at a point :P


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Re: Trying to understand the Na'vi dialog from the movie
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2010, 01:21:32 am »
In English a double negative is a positive. But in Na'vi it appears that a double negative just makes a stronger negative. Is this true?
In Na'vi (As in quite a few languages) a double negative is grammatically required.

If you use a negative pronoun, the verb must also be negative.
If you use a negative verb with an unspecific noun (IE not a pronoun, no fì, tse, pe, or other such modifiers) then it must be negative (kea uniltìrantokx ke ziva'u)

On the other hand, any other pronoun (Including anything with fì- or tsa-) is not negated,
Ftxey lu nga tokx ftxey lu nga tirea? Lu oe tìkeftxo.
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Offline kaltxi Angtsik

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Re: Trying to understand the Na'vi dialog from the movie
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2010, 01:53:10 am »

Hmm, is Neytiri saying "sawtute" and not "tawtute" another such example?


That is not actually a pronounciation goof.  Whenever the Na'vi say "sawtute", they are saying a short form of "ay+sawtute".  This confused me for a while at a point :P



Ah, I see. This language is much more complex than Mandarin Chinese.

and yes, you are correct - I was thinking of the scene where Neytiri threw Jake's torch into the water...

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Offline kaltxi Angtsik

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Re: Trying to understand the Na'vi dialog from the movie
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2010, 12:10:32 am »
Kaltxi -

I was looking at another scene in the Na'vi dialog, where Eytukan dies. He said to Neytiri "Omatikaeru tìhawnu sivi" which doesn't really look to me like a command "protect the people" but more like "(for the people) (protection) (may you do)" - and is it possible that he said "siveiyi" instead of "sivi"?

If I wanted to say "protect home tree" would I phrase it as "kelutralur tihawnu sivi"?

Just another question from a skxawng who wants to learn this.

« Last Edit: October 12, 2010, 12:12:15 am by kaltxi Angtsik »
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Offline 'Oma Tirea

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Re: Trying to understand the Na'vi dialog from the movie
« Reply #7 on: October 12, 2010, 12:25:01 am »
Kaltxi -

I was looking at another scene in the Na'vi dialog, where Eytukan dies. He said to Neytiri "Omatikaeru tìhawnu sivi" which doesn't really look to me like a command "protect the people" but more like "(for the people) (protection) (may you do)" - and is it possible that he said "siveiyi" instead of "sivi"?

If I wanted to say "protect home tree" would I phrase it as "kelutralur tihawnu sivi"?

Just another question from a skxawng who wants to learn this.



Ahh, much ado about the <iv> infix...

If you're trying to be really commanding, I would not use the <iv> infix.  However, the <iv> in the sivi above can also be used to specify commands, as well as commanding requests/wishes.  Here Eytukan strongly requested of his daughter that she will protect the people, hence the <iv>.

Thus, if you have a request/wish to protect Hometree, commanding or not, the phrase above looks correct (excusing the one small typo: tìhawnu).

Thirdly, teri pronounciation, it might seem to you like Eytukan said "...siveiyi", but to me it actually sounded like a weakly-spoken "sivi". 
 
[img]http://swokaikran.skxawng.lu/sigbar/nwotd.php?p=2b[/img]

ÌTXTSTXRR!!

Srake serar le'Ìnglìsìa lì'fyayä aylì'ut?  Nari si älofoniru rutxe!!

Offline kaltxi Angtsik

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Re: Trying to understand the Na'vi dialog from the movie
« Reply #8 on: October 12, 2010, 10:39:52 pm »
If you're trying to be really commanding, I would not use the <iv> infix.  However, the <iv> in the sivi above can also be used to specify commands, as well as commanding requests/wishes.  Here Eytukan strongly requested of his daughter that she will protect the people, hence the <iv>.

Thus, if you have a request/wish to protect Hometree, commanding or not, the phrase above looks correct (excusing the one small typo: tìhawnu).

Irayo! Now I understand better!
Yawey ngahu!
Oe nerume fte pivlltxe nìNa'vi.
pamrel si ro [email protected]

 

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