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Topic: Tolkien's Pronunciations

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Slaves of udun
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Tolkien's Pronunciations

As in real life, umlauts and circumflexes denote different sounds in different languages. I am wondering if anyone here knows what an umlaut and circumflex denote in Tolkien's mythos. From what I remember, the circumflex is only used with the Dwarves and with the Numenoreans.  The only educated guess I can take is that a circumflex, in Dwarven, denotes a long vowel, based on the pronunciation of "Khazad-dûm". Could anyone shine any light on this?



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A lady named Ruth S. Noel has a small book titled "The Languages of Tolkien's Middle-earth."  It claims to be a complete guide to all fourteen of the languages Tolkien invented, contains a dictionary of all non-English words, an English/Elvish glossary, Rules of grammar and pronunciation, and even how to write Elvish and other alphabets and runes. The current edition (1980) is published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
You might be able to gain access through your university library or your own copy through Amazon.



-- Edited by Bear on Sunday 15th of September 2013 10:05:56 PM

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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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Hello!

Yes the circumflex in Adunaic and Dwarvish marks long vowels. In Sindarin it is used to mark long vowels in stressed monosyllables, since they tended in such cases to be especially prolonged* 'So also in Annun 'sunset' and Amrun 'sunrise', under the influence of the related dun 'west' and rhun 'east' Appendix E

 

Of course I didn't employ any in that last explanation smile

 

The diaeresis is to mark that a final vowel is not mute, or that a given sequence of vowels is not a diphthong. There is no difference in pronunciation between ëa and ea, for example, when you know that ea is not a diphthong in any case.

This mark is not noted in Elvish writing [again as it does not alter the sound compared to the same vowel without the mark], although there are ways to denote long vowels of course.

 

 



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Slaves of udun
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What sparked this question in my mind long ago was the umlaut in the name "Manwë". I don't know if you're familiar with IPA, so I'll post in both. Does the "e" make the \e\ sound - or "ay" -, or the \i\ sound, or -"ee"?



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The e should be as in English end, or bed, as I've seen various Elvish experts advise [see below], although Tolkien used English example 'were' in the Appendices*.

 

It's the same as any other e in Quenya anyway.

__________

If this sounds different [English bed versus were] in your own pronunciation, I note *Daniel Andriës wrote at elfling[at]yahoogroups.com


'Edouard is right about Appendix E, but the vowel explanations there are a little misleading. For example, the way an American pronounces the 'e' in 'were' and the way an English pronounces it are two entirely different things. The American pronounces it as the 'neutral vowel' (schwa) whereas the English pronounces it more like the 'e' in 'bed'.



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I am glad this topic has appeared. What I tend to struggle with is which syllable to stress. Yes, there are rules in the Appendix E, but they are somewhat difficult to follow (for a non-native speaker like me at least). I found it helpful to look up the Lay of Leithian for guidance, because in many cases the syllable to be stressed is easily identified, otherwise there is no rhythm. The problem there is it uses early versions of many names.

Apologies for bringing up Feanorians even here, but for example 'Maedhros' seems an especially tricky name. No problem when the form is 'Maidros' (first syllable stressed and 'd' like usual). Once it becomes 'Maedros', I totally fail to see how 'ae' is pronounced, unless it is the same exact way as 'ai' (the same problem with Daeron, who also used to be Dairon at first). Then when 'd' becomes either 'dh' or 'd curled and crossed' I am at a loss. The latest (Quenya) versions, on the contrary, seem less difficult. I believe that in 'Maitimo' the first syllable is stressed according to the rules. That is, if I understand that rule for long words. "...last syllable but one contains only a short vowel followed by only one or no consonant..." - does that imply 'regardless of whether there is anything before that short vowel', or there should be nothing before it? Then what syllable is stressed in 'Celebrimbor'?..


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'Apologies for bringing up Feanorians even here, but for example 'Maedhros' seems an especially tricky name. No problem when the form is 'Maidros' (first syllable stressed and 'd' like usual). Once it becomes 'Maedros', I totally fail to see how 'ae' is pronounced, unless it is the same exact way as 'ai' (the same problem with Daeron, who also used to be Dairon at first).'

 

One of my favorite names! Yes you are correct -ae- can be pronounced like the sound of English eye. Tolkien, rather confusingly, sometimes anglicized Maedhros as Maidros, just as he did with Aiglos for instance [the correct form is Aeglos]

 

'Then when 'd' becomes either 'dh' or 'd curled and crossed' I am at a loss.'

 

The stress remains the same in Maedhros or Maeðros. This second example contains the character known as 'eth', used here to represent the th sound of English this [as does dh]. As an English speaker I know that the th in 'this' and 'thin' are pronounced differently, but the spelling doesn't reflect this. We could really write Maethros but that does not help the reader know that the th here is voiced. 

 

'The latest (Quenya) versions, on the contrary, seem less difficult. I believe that in 'Maitimo' the first syllable is stressed according to the rules.'

 

Correct. And Russandol would be russAndol.

 

'That is, if I understand that rule for long words. "...last syllable but one contains only a short vowel followed by only one or no consonant..." - does that imply 'regardless of whether there is anything before that short vowel', or there should be nothing before it? Then what syllable is stressed in 'Celebrimbor'?'

 

The primary stress is celebrImbor, as here the vowel in the penult is followed by two consonants. That said, in Sindarin th, dh, and ch represent single consonants, and that's why Tolkien's example [of stress] of dEnethor is still correct. When writing in Elvish one character is used when representing the th sound in Maedhros, like when Tolkien writes Maeðros for instance, using Roman characters.



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By the way, even more confusingly but as I think I understand things, the older form Maidhros [Etymologies] 'Pale Glitter' is not an anglicization as far as -ai- goes [I note Etymologies here, under base MAD- ['... N meið, maið, hence Maidhros (anglicized Maidros)'], nor is the later form Maedros 'Shapely + red-haired' a simple change from 'uncouth' -dh- as far as -d- goes.

In short I don't agree [although a minor point perhaps] with some websites that Maedhros means 'shapely + red-haired', as to my mind that is adopting the more well known form from The Silmarillion while also adopting the later meaning for Maedros.

But as I implied above, after Noldorin Maidhros became Sindarin Maedhros [an external change], and still before the whole idea of Maitimo Russandol [and thus Maedros and later Maedron] came into play in the late 1960s, sometimes Tolkien merely anglicized Maedhros as Maidros.

 

And for any who might be wondering, anglicization is making things English, or more English, like Balrogs as a plural for instance, and it seems Tolkien sometimes feared -dh- was too 'uncouth' for some eyes [using Galadrim for Galadhrim for another example].

Again, as I think I understand things biggrin



-- Edited by Galin on Monday 16th of September 2013 02:27:35 PM

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I am actually very well versed in IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet), which uses the "eth" (ð) for a soft "th", as in "the"; and a hard "th" as in "path". The hard "th" in "path" is represented by theta (). If anyone else is familiar with IPA it would be much easier to discuss pronunciations, and I'm glad you brought up the "eth". Do you know any more of the symbols? ie. "æ"



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I can't say that I'm well versed in IPA anymore. It's been a few years since I took linguistics. For the most part I can remember things when I look at the chart. I do recall other symbols but would have no idea how to get them from, say a website, to here. Would copy and paste work?

It makes reading/understanding(?) how to pronounce a lot of the Elvish words (not to mention Old English) a lot easier.



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Yeah, copy and paste works. I don't type in the codes for the symbols - I have them saved in a word document. Anyway, in IPA every symbol makes one and only one sound. For instance the letter /a/ makes the "ah" sound, as in "father", but /e/ makes the "ay" sound as in "make". So with IPA you don't need umlauts, circumflexes, or accent marks. In example, Khazad-dûm" would be written as /kæzæd-dum/. Notice the "dum" is spelled the same way but with no circumflex, because in IPA "u" always and only makes the sound 'oo'. Lol, point is, no need for marks above the letters with IPA. And I'm glad to instruct anyone in IPA as much as they'd like; I work at my university as an English tutor and I teach it to people. It helps a lot with foreign languages (I'm taking Latin right now), including Tolkien's.



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On the stress:

"The primary stress is celebrImbor, as here the vowel in the penult is followed by two consonants. "

Intuitively I would place the stress the same way. But you are giving me an insight on how to interpret the rule. I was applying it literally. So,
Ce-le-brim-bor;
and the last syllable but one (which is 'brim') indeed contains only one consonant after the vowel, while the next consonant belongs to the next syllable (is that correct?). But in the word as a whole the 'i' is followed by two consonants. It seems we should actually look at those consonants regardless of which syllable they belong to. I see that the preceding sentence says exactly that ("a vowel followed by two or more consonants").
I vaguely remember that there was a Quenya name for him (Celebrimbor) too, but could not find it recently (found something different from what I remember).

According to the rule, it appears that the last syllable is never stressed. And again I have a problem, it looks like the obsolete name Egnor (and probably likewise Aegnor and Aikanar) should be stressed at the last syllable.

"But there of Finrod's children four
Were Angrod slain and proud Egnor"


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In the case of Nelyo it clearly appears that at least the spelling if not pronunciation was changing along with the change in the meaning of the name.

I agree here that -dh- is 'uncouth' (well, any sound with which I struggle is uncouth to me...). But as far as the eldest son of Feanor is concerned, you are saying that Maedros is the form that represents the fusion of 'Maitimo' and 'Russandol'. Is that because there is no -th- in 'Maitimo' (Sindarin 'maed' shapely (not 'maedh'))? Is it a new stem by the way? The latter element 'ross' existed earlier as Noldorin 'rhosc' brown. Why not Maedross? Just wondering.

As to the earlier etymology, 'maið' pale+ 'rhoss' flash/glitter... What does 'pale-glitter' mean as a name? Or maybe the name doesn't have to be meaningful after all. But the latest version is quite meaningful.

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'I vaguely remember that there was a Quenya name for him (Celebrimbor) too, but could not find it recently (found something different from what I remember).'

 

A note to Of Dwarves And Men relates that Celebrimbor was a Sindarized form of Telerin Telperimpar (Quenya Tyelpinquar), and said to be a frequent name among the Teleri -- however this was seemingly written in connection with the idea that Celebrimbor of Eregion was a Telerin Elf -- and Tolkien had probably forgotten that he had published, in the revised edition, that Celebrimbor was descended from Feanor.


'According to the rule, it appears that the last syllable is never stressed. And again I have a problem, it looks like the obsolete name Egnor (and probably likewise Aegnor and Aikanar) should be stressed at the last syllable.

"But there of Finrod's children four
Were Angrod slain and proud Egnor"

 

Yes Appendix E notes that in words of two syllables, the stress falls in practically all cases on the first syllable. I think we might allow for concessions in poetry however. Another possible example... 

'In Elder Days before the fall
Of mighty kings in Nargothrond
And Gondolin, who now beyond
The Western Seas have passed away...'

... would seem to call for a [primary] stress nArgothrond, but in a non-poetic context it should be nargOthrond.

 

'I agree here that -dh- is 'uncouth' (well, any sound with which I struggle is uncouth to me...). But as far as the eldest son of Feanor is concerned, you are saying that Maedros is the form that represents the fusion of 'Maitimo' and 'Russandol'. Is that because there is no -th- in 'Maitimo' (Sindarin 'maed' shapely (not 'maedh'))?'

 

I think so anyway, yes. Sindarin maed is attested in notes to the Shibboleth [as you noted], and although I'm no trained linguist, I think we simply have -d- here, and -t- in Quenya [as a side note for anyone who might not know and might be interested, internally earlier Quenya had a sound represented by 'thorn' which was like -th-, and Feanor disliked this sound merging with -s-].

 

'Is it a new stem by the way?'

 

I'm not sure; although in any case I didn't go further back than Words, Phrases And Passages admittedly. But the Common Eldarin form is noted as magiti- 'shapely' in Vinyar Tengwar 41, in connection with Maitimo. Earlier in Words, Phrases And Passage we find a base MAGA- [no reference to any Maitimo there unless I missed it somehow], which entry includes: Quenya adverb [poetic or archaic] maie, and as a prefix mai- may be from either MAY or MAG. Similarly S. mae, adverb 'well' And then Tolkien seems to have added again: 'MAGA- 'good (physically)'; MAG-

 

And if we compare that to The Shibboleth of Feanor we might have something: 'Maitimo 'well-shaped one': he was of beautiful bodily form.' But I'm not sure Tolkien was thinking of Maitimo or Maedros here.

 

'The latter element 'ross' existed earlier as Noldorin 'rhosc' brown. Why not Maedross? Just wondering.'

 

As far as I [think I] understand things, when [externally] Noldorin became Sindarin, a word like rhosc should hail from an older form in sr-, which appears to suggest a base starting with SR-. Appendix E notes Sindarin rh- represents a voiceless r 'usually derived from older initial sr-'. When working on the new Feanorean names in the later 1960s however, Tolkien imagined a stem (u)rus- for various red-brown words -- varying brownish-red from brick-red to auburn, from which we have S. rusc 'fox' for example, and ross 'red-haired'. This stem was published in Vinyar Tengwar 41.

 

So if we combine the scenarios, I think we might have separate bases. I think [seem to remember that] Tolkien himself explained Rhosgobel as meaning 'russet-town', although again if I recall correctly, not in anything he himself published. Anyway from the stem (u)rus- we have Sindarin ross, but in Sindarin names final -ss can be shortened to -s, as in S. Laegolas(s) for example [Silvan Legolas].



'As to the earlier etymology, 'maið' pale+ 'rhoss' flash/glitter... What does 'pale-glitter' mean as a name? Or maybe the name doesn't have to be meaningful after all. But the latest version is quite meaningful.'

 

Good question! I like the meaning 'Pale Glitter' but have been wondering about it myself. Earlier I thought I could extend the meaning to 'Pale glitter [of metal]' but then I started to think about it again, and recently I posted [on another Tolkien forum]:

____________________________________________

 

 Okay I'm still musing about this:

'RUS- ... (N [poetic or archaic] rhoss chiefly found in names as Maedhros [MAD], Findros, Celebros etc., owing to coalescence with ROS1)'

I now notice that this entry, under base RUS- has Maedhros not Maidhros -- noting that the first was seemingly the 'rejected', or at least earlier, entry, that included a form from maen. And perhaps the RUS- entry could have been written with the original entry for MAD- in mind -- and later the entry MAD- being rewritten -- but not the entry for RUS- in any case.

In other words, in an earlier entry for Etymologies [see Vinyar Tengwar 45] Tolkien had imagined two variant interpretations of this name: one Gondolic in the form of Maedhros from Maenros from N. maen 'skilled, clever with the hands', and one Feanorean: from maidh, Noldorin meidh 'pale, fallow, fawn'. Tolkien revised this however, to: Noldorin meidh, maidh 'pale, fallow, fawn' and Maidhros 'pale-glitter'.

This probably explains why I found [on a site called Merin Essi ar Quenteli] 'Maedhros -- 'Skilled with Metal' (Noldorin) maen - skilled, rhoss - polished metal.'

This sort of makes sense with respect to the 'Gondolic' form, as 'skilled' hardly seems to go well with 'glitter' or 'rain', but I think Tolkien abandoned this earlier idea in any case.

Anyway, did Maidhros really mean 'pale glitter [of metal]' or simply [as Tolkien wrote it under MAD-] 'Pale Glitter'?

The base RUS- did signify 'flash, glitter of metal' but Old Noldorin russe meant polished metal, and it is here that we have archaic or poetic rhoss -- noting that under ROS1, Noldorin rhoss 'rain' is not noted as archaic or poetic. And then we have names as Maedhros, Findros, Celebros 'owing to coalescence with ROS1' Okay well Celebros meant Silver-rain, but [to my mind anyway] rain itself is silvery and glittery, and not that unlike the 'flash of metal'...

... so with a coalescence, do we find -ros in names with a broader, 'merged' meaning, something like 'silvery flash, silvery glitter'? And if one were to trace the variant etymologies either back in time [archaic], or by comparison to poetic usage, one would then find that sometimes rhoss referred to 'polished metal', other times 'rain' in more recent or 'less' poetic circumstances -- but again both of which glittered in any case.

And so, Tolkien's meaning under MAD- for Maidhros 'Pale glitter' is possibly intentionally vaguer than 'glitter of metal', and more correct in its generality. It should simply be 'Pale Glitter', that is.

Which it is! But does the reasoning make sense?

 

Anyway, no one responded there... yet biggrin   

 

Perhaps a linguist here can help me out! 



-- Edited by Galin on Tuesday 17th of September 2013 02:34:59 PM

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Thanks, Galin, for your help.

"Earlier in Words, Phrases And Passage we find a base MAGA- [no reference to any Maitimo there unless I missed it somehow], which entry includes: Quenya adverb [poetic or archaic] maie, and as a prefix mai- may be from either MAY or MAG. Similarly S. mae, adverb 'well' And then Tolkien seems to have added again: 'MAGA- 'good (physically)'; MAG-"

This however doesn't seem to cover the whole word 'Maitimo'? Or does it?

"...and recently I posted [on another Tolkien forum]:"
(Found this on LOTRplaza - wouldn't mention it, but I stumbled on something else written by you and irrelevant here but quite relevant to the oath of Feanor; it is something on which I disagree with you, but hope to bring it up in another place)

"Anyway, did Maidhros really mean 'pale glitter [of metal]' or simply [as Tolkien wrote it under MAD-] 'Pale Glitter'?"

When I read that question I felt unusually dim for quite a while (despite all this glitter). Are you trying to distinguish the metallic glitter from all other kinds of glitter maybe? Or perhaps one needs to be a linguist to understand the question...

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Just my two cents. I don't think "Pale Glitter" is meant to be taken literally, which it would be more or less if it referred to that of metal. Anything that glitters is "shiny", "stands out", etc. If something were "pale" glittering, I would take that to mean a lesser version of "glittering". In other words, he stands out somewhat, but is not as great as others/his forbears/elders, et al.



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I am not sure I agree with this admittedly original take. So "pale glitter" refers to the eldest son of Feanor being not as great as who? Finwe and Feanor? As to Finwe, that is disputable. As to Feanor, no one of the Noldor was greater, so should they all be called names referring to different degrees of paleness? Imagine a parent giving his son (the eldest son at that) a name to the effect of "good, but not as good as I am". Even Feanor wouldn't do this, I suppose. But if you are correct, I am glad that the name's meaning has been later revised. "Red-head cutie" is still better than what you propose... But this is a matter for another topic, obviously, sorry for sliding off yet again.

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'This however doesn't seem to cover the whole word 'Maitimo'? Or does it?'

I would say no but I am not expert enough to do more than conjecture from this point: considering attested Common Eldarin magiti- from the late text, we seem to have an adjectival element -iti [but for this I delve back into Etymologies however, with example ma3iti 'handy, skilled' with base MA3- 'hand'], and -mo is possibly the ending described that 'often appeared in names or titles, sometimes with an agental significance'. JRRT, The War of the Jewels



The problem is that I am guessing about a base MAG- with a meaning intended for this name specifically [and in 1968 or later], and don't really know if an adjectival element [added to the base] makes sense for an ancient formation magiti- 'shapely'. Here's where I need a Tolkien language scholar or a linguist, but that would be my guess anyway. 


'(...) I stumbled on something else written by you and irrelevant here but quite relevant to the oath of Feanor; it is something on which I disagree with you, but hope to bring it up in another place)'

 

Okay. And if it's old [more than a day old] I might not even agree with me anymore wink



"Anyway, did Maidhros really mean 'pale glitter [of metal]' or simply [as Tolkien wrote it under MAD-] 'Pale Glitter'?" When I read that question I felt unusually dim for quite a while (despite all this glitter). Are you trying to distinguish the metallic glitter from all other kinds of glitter maybe? Or perhaps one needs to be a linguist to understand the question...'

 

I'm trying to figure out how specific the meaning of -ros was as it appeared in names. Celebros means 'silver-rain' but for Maidhros [again, at least at the time of this idea of course] we have an archaic or poetic word rhoss that seems to mean 'polished metal' but was yet said to be:  '...chiefly found in names as Maedhros [MAD], Findros, Celebros etc., owing to coalescence with ROS1'     

So I'm wondering: does this intend to say that the meanings 'merged' or became confused in names, leading to a more general meaning [again, in names].

 

Part of [one of] Tolkien's problems with ros in the later scenario was that the two words ros 'foam' and ros 'red-haired' can't be connected in meaning. I can see that, but I also think I can see how these two words from the earlier scenario could be connected in a sense, as [to me] the glitter of rain and the glitter of polished metal are somewhat similar.

So these words might 'coalesce'? And again if they do, does that mean the more specific meaning of each becomes more general when employed in these names? Thus Tolkien's 'Pale Glitter' but not 'Pale Glitter of metal' [the latter being a little more specific in meaning I think] 

 

Or am I just overthinking things?            



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"... would seem to call for nArgothrond, but in a non-poetic context it should be nargOthrond."

Somehow in the Lay of Leithian whenever Nargothrond appears it is always stressed this way. With one exception (unless I am mistaken):

"What of Nargothrond? Who reigneth there?
Into what realm did your feet dare?"
(Thu says that, and he is not to be trusted)

Once or twice the change in stress might occur for poetic reasons, but if such use is consistent, doesn't it simply indicate an exception to the rule (I wonder). And whether the first or the last syllable is stressed is not possible to determine... but not the second.

"So these words might 'coalesce'? And again if they do, does that mean the more specific meaning of each becomes more general when employed in these names? Thus Tolkien's 'Pale Glitter' but not 'Pale Glitter of metal' [the latter being a little more specific in meaning I think] "

So it seems at least I understood your question more or less. Do you hope that a linguist would have more information on these 'coalescent' stems as they were at that time - more than is published in Etymologies? I don't see any major flaw in your reasoning and 'ros' might refer to a more generalized glitter, because indeed rain glitters and metal glitters (and all polished surfaces do too... and even plastic). Whatever kind of glitter it was, it is interesting why Nelyo was given that name (is Teralectus right?).

Anyway, even though the name gives much headache, the character himself gives more of it.

"Or am I just overthinking things?"
In my opinion it is better than the opposite.

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Lorelline wrote:

 "Or am I just overthinking things?"
In my opinion it is better than the opposite.

 Definitely.



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Hmm, does Christopher Tolkien say Nargothrond anywhere in his readings? At the moment I can't remember if he does, or what the context is if he does. Anyway, I'm hoping a linguist might help confirm [or quibble with] my latest interpretation of the RUS- entry and this coalescing -- that is, more than I'm hoping that a linguist might know of more material to work with here, although this could be true as well. 

I'm now also wondering if Maedhros [as spelled in the RUS- entry] could represent the later meaning of Maedhros. I spoke with a linguist who studies Tolkien's languages and he told me that Noldorin Maidhros meaning 'Pale Glitter' is not possible in Sindarin without some tinkering -- which maybe Tolkien did 'in his head', or planned to do, but so far we have no evidence that he did...

... but I didn't ask [or look into it myself yet] if maybe the older idea came round again and Maedhros from maen-ros is viable in Sindarin without any 'tinkering'. At least the change due to -nr- seems attested in Caradhras for example: caran +rass.

 

My earlier thought on 'Pale Glitter' was that it was a poetic reference to Maedhros' notable abilities with steel, thus his sword, that is: the pale glitter of the sword of Maedhros, as he drew and wielded it! Total guess on my part, but it seems 'somewhat connected' to maen 'skilled' anyway.

 

'Or am I just overthinking things?' 'In my opinion it is better than the opposite.'

 

Heheh, I like this smile

 



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Date: Sep 18, 2013
Galin wrote:

My earlier thought on 'Pale Glitter' was that it was a poetic reference to Maedhros' notable abilities with steel, thus his sword, that is: the pale glitter of the sword of Maedhros, as he drew and wielded it! Total guess on my part, but it seems 'somewhat connected' to maen 'skilled' anyway.

  


 
The only problem I would have with this is how would one (or his parents) know how skilled he would be with a blade when he was born - when he was named?



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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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According to the later scenario, at least, the Mother-name* could be prophetic I think -- although why it would be in Sindarin form is another matter!

Or perhaps Maedhros could be a later epesse, a nickname. I can't remember now [I once had this all dated somewhere] just when we first encounter Maedhros in Silmarillion texts, but I think that the first account of Eldarin naming customs is generally dated to the later 1950s.

 

*obviously not a Mother-name nor an epesse in the later Maedros scenario [1968 or later].



-- Edited by Galin on Wednesday 18th of September 2013 01:53:47 PM

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Galin wrote:

Or perhaps Maedhros could be a later epesse, a nickname. I can't remember now [I once had this all dated somewhere] just when we first encounter Maedhros in Silmarillion texts [somewhere in the 1950s?], but I do recall that the first account of Eldarin naming customs is generally dated to the later 1950s.

 


 Yes, it is the most frustrating thing knowing you used to know the all the answers or where to look and now you've forgotten. I'm facing a lot of that just recently jumping back into Tolkien's world after years out of it.



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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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I should add that by 'all' I meant that I once did a somewhat detailed external history of the name Maidros and its variations, and now I have no idea where those notes are.

I've done the same for other names, or 'whatever' [like Galadriel and Celeborn's confusing history for example], but of course there is plenty [plenty] that I haven't researched in this way [and what we can do is thanks to Christopher Tolkien of course].

But yes, frustrating. I think I might have even thrown these Maidros notes out by mistake! But onward... I can always enjoy researching it again.



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"According to the later scenario, at least, the Mother-name* could be prophetic I think...

*obviously not a Mother-name nor an epesse in the later Maedros scenario [1968 or later]."

Just to get things straight, you are saying that Maedros is neither a Mother-name nor an epesse but their combination - and not that the Mother-name was not prophetic?
Of course when the meaning was still 'Pale glitter' the idea of prophetic mother-names did not exist (or was not published). Besides, swords were not used then yet - weapons were only made after Melkor was released and started his mischief, which I think happened after Nelyo was born.


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Lórellinë

Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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'Just to get things straight, you are saying that Maedros is neither a Mother-name nor an epesse but their combination - and not that the Mother-name was not prophetic?'

 

That's right [about what I meant]: later scenario Maedros is a Sindarized combination, not a Mother-name nor an epesse.

'Of course when the meaning was still 'Pale glitter' the idea of prophetic mother-names did not exist (or was not published).'

 

Agreed. Although after Laws And Customs was written we could have [albeit without any written evidence] Maedhros 'Pale Glitter' [with tinkering to make it fit better as Sindarin] as a Sindarization of a prophetic Mother-name originally given in Quenya. With this idea superseded by the later 'red-haired' scenario I mean.

To really speculate! Admittedly.

But then again the Noldor no longer spoke a form of Noldorin in Aman after Tolkien revised this for the publication of The Lord of the Rings, so fairly early in the 1950s, and thus these 'now Sindarin forms' would have to await the Noldor speaking Sindarin in any case, within the story -- even if used, in a given text, to refer to 'Maedhros' when still in Aman for example.

 

'Besides, swords were not used then yet - weapons were only made after Melkor was released and started his mischief, which I think happened after Nelyo was born.'

 

I think Tolkien revised his timeline with respect to weapons in the Later Quenta Silmarillion II, but it was not taken up by Christopher Tolkien into the 1977 Silmarillion.

Emphasis on I think [not positive at the moment] biggrin 


Edit: and for all I know, sometime before 1968, maybe Tolkien just liked the sound of Maedhros and intended to get around to explaining it [again]... never did... or that is, when he did he thought of a new idea anyway!



-- Edited by Galin on Wednesday 18th of September 2013 04:19:31 PM

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"I think Tolkien revised his timeline with respect to weapons in the Later Quenta Silmarillion II, but it was not taken up by Christopher Tolkien into the 1977 Silmarillion."

Indeed. 'Now Quendi had possessed weapons in Middle-earth but not of their own devising... But all these were long unused, and lay in hoard as memorials of old days half-forgotten'. I would say that if Nelyo's name had to do with the glitter of a sword, and was given to him by his parents, that on its own should have been a forewarning of the coming trouble but neither the Etymologies nor other sources mention that implication. Yet what other sort of glitter could there be? I am just saying that the names of other Feanor's sons as they were at that time made somewhat more sense.

"Edit: and for all I know, sometime before 1968, maybe Tolkien just liked the sound of Maedhros and intended to get around to explaining it [again]... never did... or that is, when he did he thought of a new idea anyway!"

Definitely he liked that sound because the name appears very early and never undergoes any major change in pronunciation (transient -d- to -dh- and back), despite the changes in its spelling.
(To my taste all the three late names sound much better, disappointing in the meaning as they are.)

More on the stress: consider the name Curufinwe. The second from the last syllable is stressed. Then the last syllable drops off. Does the stress migrate to the first syllable or stay on the last?

I just realized that the stress in my own name should be not what I thought... If the rule applies that is.


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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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'More on the stress: consider the name Curufinwe. The second from the last syllable is stressed. Then the last syllable drops off. Does the stress migrate to the first syllable or stay on the last?'

I would say it falls on the first syllable in Curufin: so curufInwe but cUrufin.

'I just realized that the stress in my own name should be not what I thought... If the rule applies that is.'

I would say lorElline.



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"I would say lorElline."
Thanks... my worst suspicions are confirmed. But too late to modify it now.

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Okay now I'm curious smile what are you going for [in meaning too]?

My interpretation of the stress includes that we have short -i- here.



-- Edited by Galin on Thursday 19th of September 2013 05:41:58 PM

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It is referring to someone living/lingering near the Lorellin lake. Which makes it impossible to choose a kingdom on this forum, but that's a minor thing. I think it is a short "i" there but preferred it stressed (or the first syllable)



-- Edited by Lorelline on Thursday 19th of September 2013 08:32:50 PM

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Lórellinë

Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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Oh, okay.

By the way I had edited my post before you responded -- as for a moment I got mixed up by Sindarin sometimes reducing -au- to o, so I was thinking 'golden' [laure] not dream for a moment [Glorfindel, Laurefindil]... so that's why I edited 'golden something' out and decided to just ask.

Oops!



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That's fine. Timing is a tricky issue, you never know if a hasty post or a delayed one will 'work'. Just didn't want to delay until after midnight as usual. Will edit mine too.

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Lórellinë

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Speaking of choosing a kingdom, how do I? lol. I can see the list of them and all the ranks, but I don't see a button to choose



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Teralectus,
On choosing your ranking kingdom.
It is actually very simple.
Use the site navigation off the forums toolbar.
Choose Ranking Kingdoms
Scroll through the different kingdoms with their various ranks until you find one that you like.
Then scroll through to the phrase "Select Your Kingdom" ... Just click on it and choose the kingdom you would like to have your rank scored in. 
Have I missed anything my friends?

Bear



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Just wanted to make sure that the problem of -LOR- has not been accidentally created and looked in the Ethymologies, to find it as -LOS- (for the sleepy-meanings that is). I have always been wondering how come the pronunciations vary so much even if they are derived from the same stem. Sometimes there is certain resemblance - it is possible to see the relation between -LOS- and its derivatives like lore (slumber), but not much with oltha for example. This lack of similarity is so common that one wonders how the derivatives are related to their stem - how to tell that they are originating from that same stem. It occurred to me that maybe they look totally dissimilar when written in Roman (or Latin?) letters but more similar in elf-letters? (what a discovery).

There turned out to be lots of stems meaning 'glitter'. And more names appeared to have existed in Quenya form for quite a while (like Findekano for Fingon and Phinderauto for Finrod (became Findarato later)). But again the meaning was different and had nothing to do with hair.

Is there a difference between a 'stem' and a 'root' or is that the same thing - I am used to 'roots'.

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Lórellinë

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"Is there a difference between a 'stem' and a 'root' or is that the same thing - I am used to 'roots'.

Roots?

Ham (The Gaffer) Gamgee said;

"But my lad Sam will know more about that. He's in and out of Bag End. Crazy about stories of the old days he is, and he listens to all Mr. Bilbo's tales. Mr. Bilbo has learned him his letters - meaning no harm, mark you, and I hope no harm will come of it.

'Elves and Dragons' I says to him. 'Cabbages and potatoes (roots?) are better for me and you. Don't go getting mixed up in the business of your betters, or you'll land in trouble too big for you,' I says to him. And I might say it to others,' he added with a look at the stranger and the miller. (The Lord Of The Rings,The Fellowship of the Ring, Book One, Chapter I ~ "A Long-expected Party")

smilesmilesmilebiggrinbiggrinbiggrinsmilesmilesmile

 

 



-- Edited by Bear on Tuesday 24th of September 2013 07:02:36 AM

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Lol, I was trying to look smart but who am I kidding... That's the sort of "roots" I am used to.

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Lórellinë

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Generally speaking there seems to be a difference between the terms 'base, root, stem', but for example when we look at Etymologies [getting Tolkien specific], it appears one could call a 'base' a 'primary root' as well.

 

I think in Etymologies the bases are meant to be hypothetical 'frames' upon which hang general meanings, and from which words can then be made [or working 'back in time' deducing earlier forms]. That said, some bases seem to be words as well, but still I think when we write a base using capital letters such as LAS- we are meant to think of this as a hypothetical frame.

 

In Etymlogies we have LOS- 'sleep' and OLOS- 'dream' [the initial vowel has an acute accent actually, and the 'base' in the notes to the Istari in Unfinished Tales is written as OLO-S actually]. A form like Noldorin oltha- I would call a 'verbal stem' technically, considering that the action 'to dream' will remain the basic meaning but oltha- will be inflected for tense, for example.

 

Next to oltha- Tolkien notes an asterisked older form *olsa- and the asterisk would seemingly denote that this was deduced rather than attested.

So we might have a base OLOS and a verbal ending -a which gives us an early possible word *olosa [my asterisked forms are different from JRRT's of course, as he is still the author despite indulging in his own conceit here]. Then we seemingly have the loss of the second vowel at some point, and in the Noldorin branch of Elvish -ls- [again at a given point in internal time] produced -lth- leaving oltha- here, and this can be inflected like with the English verb dreamed, dreaming, dreams.

 

That's my guess at how this word derived from more primitive forms. Even Quenya, the more archaic tongue compared to Sindarin, has a history of internal sound changes, and what 'we' usually mean by Quenya is really Exilic Quenya. A most famous change concerns the older Quenya sound similar to -th- merging with s, despite Feanor's objection, and which was no longer found in the spoken Quenya that the Noldor had brought to Middle-earth. 

Externally [as I think I understand it] Tolkien deliberately fashioned a system of sound-changes so that from Primitive Quendian to Sindarin [this branch of Elvish], Sindarin would end up sounding somewhat like Welsh. Confusingly we have both external changes: Tolkien revising things -- and internal changes: how a primitive word changed in a given branch of Elvish, like English has changed over time, comparing Old English to Modern English.

 

Of course I rambled about things you already know -- and possibly about things I think I know but that might be off the path. If Carl Hostteter ever joins us here again [I believe he posted at least once here, a long while back though], perhaps he can set me right about X or Y, if I have strayed.



-- Edited by Galin on Tuesday 24th of September 2013 07:59:22 PM

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