Inherent Plural

Inherently plural nouns are those who are always plural in meaning, and therefore never take plural suffixes. (1) For example, cha torpedoes is the plural form of peng torpedo.

Grammatical usage

  • Inherently plural nouns are grammatically singular and take the singular verb prefix: cha yIjun Evade the torpedoes! instead of tIjun evade them.
  • The plural suffix -mey can be attached to the singular form, but it always has the meaning of "all over the place": DoSmey targets scattered all over the place.
  • When a pronoun refers to an inherently plural noun, it must be singular. For example, ghaH is used to refer to negh: 'uQ'a' Sop neghwI' 'e' vIchaw' / ghaHvaD 'Iw HIq vInob I will let my soldiers feast, / Give them blood wine (2)
  • Inherently plural nouns may be counted by placing a number before them. The resulting noun phrase is still singular:
    ngIq gholvaD vaghmaH QaS yInob. Pay each player 50 forces. (3)
  • Derived words and compound nouns are also considered inherently plural. Examples: De' jengva' "CD, data disc" and Hong boq chuyDaH "impulse fusion thrusters".

List of words

The singular counterpart is not always known for all inherently plural nouns.

translation singular plural
ancestor qempa' no'
ashes - tIpqan
attitude-control thrusters - lolSeHcha
clothing - Sut
coordinate - Quv
deflector rI'gheS begh
energy being - HoSDo'
Koskari 'angwIl qoSqa'rIy
life sign - yInroH
paraphernalia - 'aH
plate jengva' ngop
punctuation tlhavqop ngutlh tlhavqop
resource Sup jo
sock tu'mI' paSlogh
soldier mang negh
target DoS ray'
tactic toyDal to'
take-off/landing thrusters - 'eDSeHcha
teachings - paQDI'norgh
thrusters vIj chuyDaH
torpedo peng cha
troops - QaS

See the page ➞ category noun for an automatically generated list of inherently plural nouns that are part of the wiki's dictionary. (might take a few seconds to load)

Words that are not inherently plural

These words were glossed with plural English words, but are not inherently plural.

  • Duj is glossed in TKD as instincts. Okrand has since clarified that it might be translated with both "instinct" and "instincts".
    For more details, see the ➞ definition page of Duj.
  • nuHHom is glossed as small arms, but since it's just the diminutive of nuH, it likely has the same regular plural as nuH.
  • taymey is a frozen form and is considered singular. It's okay to say taymeymey should the need arise.


1 : The Klingon Dictionary, p. 23

2 : paq'batlh 2nd edition

3 : One of the cards in the Klingon Monopoly

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