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Star Trek - Original Series The one that started it all...

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Old October 14 2012, 11:31 PM   #16
Jhubelle
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

I watched both of these today. In "The Enterprise Incident", the female Romulan commander says to Kirk that she has trouble speaking his language. She's speaking Federation Standard (English).

I would assume in "Balance of Terror" the universal translator is taking care of the conversation between Kirk and the male Romulan commander.
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Old October 15 2012, 08:59 PM   #17
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

This dialog always comfused me:

COMMANDER: Must it always be so? How many comrades have we lost in this way?

CENTURION: Our portion, Commander, is obedience.

I really never understood the Centurion's line. Am I missing a reference to something? Becuase listening to it, is sounds like "our portion" is an answer to "how many comrades were lost." The "is obedience" throws me off. I feel kinda foolish for not getting it, but if anyone can enlighten me, I'd appreciate it.
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Old October 15 2012, 09:49 PM   #18
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

Mr. Spook wrote: View Post
This dialog always comfused me:

COMMANDER: Must it always be so? How many comrades have we lost in this way?

CENTURION: Our portion, Commander, is obedience.

I really never understood the Centurion's line. Am I missing a reference to something? Becuase listening to it, is sounds like "our portion" is an answer to "how many comrades were lost." The "is obedience" throws me off. I feel kinda foolish for not getting it, but if anyone can enlighten me, I'd appreciate it.
From http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/portion:

Merriam-Webster wrote:
Definition of PORTION
1
: an individual's part or share of something: as
a : a share received by gift or inheritance
b : dowry
c : enough food especially of one kind to serve one person at one meal
2
: an individual's lot, fate, or fortune : one's share of good and evil
3
: an often limited part of a whole
I always translated
"Our portion, Commander, is obedience."
as
"Commander, it is not our place to question."
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Old October 16 2012, 01:57 AM   #19
A beaker full of death
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

Lenard's reading does suggest that he is answering the question AND saying something else.
I'm reminded of the line in Hamlet, always read as "But in the beaten way of friendship, what make you at Elsinore?"
I (and others) have always believed the first part of this line should be grouped with the earlier lines, after R&G say they await Hamlet to walk out first:
"No such matter. I will not sort you with the rest of my servants, for, to speak to you like an honest man, I am most dreadfully attended. But in the beaten way of friendship!"
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Old October 16 2012, 03:58 AM   #20
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

The two conversations in the two Romulan episodes are very different situations. The first is fairly philosophical, where they're taking stock of their lot in life, and in the second, a prisoner is being interrogated. Why would anyone speak the same way, in those two very different situations?
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Old October 16 2012, 05:21 AM   #21
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

Mr. Spook wrote: View Post
This dialog always comfused me:

COMMANDER: Must it always be so? How many comrades have we lost in this way?

CENTURION: Our portion, Commander, is obedience.

I really never understood the Centurion's line. Am I missing a reference to something? Becuase listening to it, is sounds like "our portion" is an answer to "how many comrades were lost." The "is obedience" throws me off. I feel kinda foolish for not getting it, but if anyone can enlighten me, I'd appreciate it.
I guess I always heard it wrong, but to my ear it sure sounds like he answers "A portion, Commander. 'Tis obedience."

Which would mean his answer is that they have indeed lost a portion of comrades in this manner. But that comes with the territory of obeying the Praetor's orders.

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Old October 16 2012, 07:13 AM   #22
A beaker full of death
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

^ Nope, it's definitely "our portion"
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Old October 16 2012, 07:17 AM   #23
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

A beaker full of death wrote: View Post
Lenard's reading does suggest that he is answering the question AND saying something else.
Lenard, or Warburton?
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Old October 16 2012, 08:21 PM   #24
A beaker full of death
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

^ It was Lenard's line, no?
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Old October 16 2012, 09:11 PM   #25
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

Lenard played the Commander; Warburton played the Centurion. I thought the topic under discussion at the moment was how to interpret the Centurion's line.
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Old October 16 2012, 09:36 PM   #26
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

"Our portion [in life], Commander, is obedience."

Pretty straightforward to me. Kind of like saying, "Our lot in life, Commander, is obedience."

Mr. Spook wrote: View Post
This dialog always comfused me:

COMMANDER: Must it always be so? How many comrades have we lost in this way?

CENTURION: Our portion, Commander, is obedience.
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Old October 16 2012, 10:58 PM   #27
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

T'Boo wrote: View Post
"Our portion [in life], Commander, is obedience."

Pretty straightforward to me. Kind of like saying, "Our lot in life, Commander, is obedience."

Mr. Spook wrote: View Post
This dialog always comfused me:

COMMANDER: Must it always be so? How many comrades have we lost in this way?

CENTURION: Our portion, Commander, is obedience.
I kinda always got the implication that he meant 'our lot..', but it always did sound awkward to me anyway.

I also agree that the two situations are vastly different. A lot more dialogue needed to be said in 'Incident' and if they had been talking so formally it would have got bogged down.
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Old October 17 2012, 03:57 AM   #28
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

Conscious Circuits wrote: View Post
Lenard played the Commander; Warburton played the Centurion. I thought the topic under discussion at the moment was how to interpret the Centurion's line.
Ah, my mistake. I didn't realize it was the Centurion's line. Been a while.
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Old October 17 2012, 04:11 AM   #29
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

A beaker full of death wrote: View Post
Conscious Circuits wrote: View Post
Lenard played the Commander; Warburton played the Centurion. I thought the topic under discussion at the moment was how to interpret the Centurion's line.
Ah, my mistake. I didn't realize it was the Centurion's line. Been a while.
I sorta agree with your point though, if I understand it. If the Centurion had stopped at "Our portion," then he would have meant something else. So, it does sorta play like maybe he was about to be disrespectful, but then catches himself and declares his obedience by extending his original statement, if that's what you mean. I always got that effect from it too; that's the actor giving it an extra and effective twist.
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Old October 20 2012, 06:18 PM   #30
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Re: The Linguistic Downgrading of the Romulans

Conscious Circuits wrote: View Post
I sorta agree with your point though, if I understand it. If the Centurion had stopped at "Our portion," then he would have meant something else. So, it does sorta play like maybe he was about to be disrespectful, but then catches himself and declares his obedience by extending his original statement, if that's what you mean. I always got that effect from it too; that's the actor giving it an extra and effective twist.
I can't remember, but I think I always think at first that he's saying they've lost "their portion" of ships, as in quite a few, and then, no, he doesn't mean that after all. Confusing, but "our portion" still can be figured out from the context. I'm not sure it shows extra "formality" to use an unusual or possibly old-fashioned expression like this, or that it's some sort of language "upgrade". Some people are just better and more creative about expressing themselves.
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