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Old December 17 2008, 07:28 PM   #38
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

But that's just my point, it's not arbitrary when it comes to measurements, because they're different things. A kellicam is different from a kilometer is different from a mile. I mean, is it arbitrary to translate references to cubits in the Bible rather than converting them to feet or meters? Of course not, because it's a distinct unit. It has a different length than a foot or a meter.

Besides, one could argue that "kellicam" is the English word for the unit that's known as qelI'qam in Klingonese. In fact, that's exactly what Marc Okrand says in The Klingon Dictionary. Look up qelI'qam and it gives the English equivalent as "kellicam." However you spell or pronounce it, it's a distinct unit of a specific size. Substituting "kilometers" for "kellicams" would make as much sense as substituting "purple" for "blue."
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