Tuesday, January 2, 2024

More Tolkien

Two Tolkien Related · Three Tolk-Lang Questions · More Tolkien · Even More Tolkien Related

Q 1
Is there any connection between Tolkien's Middle Earth and real world history, such as ancient Greece?

Hans-Georg Lundahl
avid reader back when I had better sleep than now
St. Genevieve
It’s actually an Uchronia.

In other words, while places can be seen as corresponding, the timeline doesn’t, it ends before history begins.

Q 2
Did Tolkien believe in any religion when writing The Lord of the Rings (LOTR)?

Hans-Georg Lundahl
none/ apprx Masters in Latin (language) & Greek (language), Lund University
Sat 30.XII.2023
Like previous and subsequent years, he was a Roman Catholic.

Q 3
What are the most similar languages to Quenya, and what is their relationship to it?

Hans-Georg Lundahl
none/ apprx Masters in Latin (language) & Greek (language), Lund University
Telerin is closer than Sindarin.
Sindarin is also closer to Telerin than to Quenya.

Telerin and Sindarin both went through QU > P, GW > B, NGW > MB.
Telerin and Sindarin also both went through MB- > B-, ND- > D-, NG- > G-
Telerin and Sindarin both preserved B-, D-, G-

Quenya preserved QU, (at first, see below) GW, and NGW.
Quenya went through MB- > M-, N- > D-, NG- > N(G)- (later normal N-)
Quenya went through B- > V-, D- > L-, G- > - (Sindarin Galadriel = Quenya Alatariel)

Sindarin then went through lots of changes that made consonants softer, and the vowels system fewer syllables with more diphthongs, reminiscent of Welsh or Estonian. THESE changes make Sindarin the furthest off from the other two, but still somewhat closer to Telerin.

All of this obviously inside the Legendarium, the kind of sound changes that Tolkien played with for fun.

Q 4
Did Tolkien create all of his languages, or just some (like Quenya)? If he only created some, why did he do so?

Hans-Georg Lundahl
none/ apprx Masters in Latin (language) & Greek (language), Lund University
Dec 28 2023
Holy Innocents
He didn’t create all in equal detail.

One could say he didn’t create Rohirric at all, since it’s not equal to either Adûnaic nor to Westron, and the related language it’s supposed to stand for is not given anywhere, just given Anglo-Saxon as a stand-in, with the understanding it’s related to Westron roughly as Anglo-Saxon to modern English (while modern English is the most often stand-in for Westron).

Nearly true, here is a bit exception from that, if Helge Fauskanger allows me to quote:

ROHIRRIC[1] …Nonetheless, a few words of genuine Rohirric have been published. Appendix F informs us that trahan means "burrow", corresponding to genuine Hobbit trân "smial"; the language of the Hobbits had at some point in the past been influenced by Rohirric or a closely related language. Another example is Hobbit kast "mathom", corresponding to Rohirric kastu. The word hobbit itself represents the actual Third Age word kuduk, a worn-down Hobbitic form of Rohirric kûd-dûkan, "hole-dweller" - itself represented by Old English holbytla in LotR.

After the publication of The Peoples of Middle-earth we have a few more words. According to PM:53, the frequent element éo- "horse" (in Éowyn, Éomer etc.) represents genuine Rohirric loho-, lô-, evidently a cognate of the Elvish words for "horse" (cf. Quenya rocco, Sindarin roch) - demonstrating the influence of Elvish on the Mannish tongues. Éothéod, "Horse-folk" or "Horse-land", is a translation of genuine Rohirric Lohtûr. The Sindarin name Rohan corresponds to the native Lôgrad (in Old English version Éo-marc, the "Horse-mark"). Théoden represents tûrac-, an old word for "king" (cf. the Elvish stem TUR- referring to power and mastery; LR:395).

According to UT:387, the actual Rohirric word for "wose" (wild man) was róg pl. rógin. (The plural ending -in is also known from Doriathrin, so this may be yet another testimony of Elvish influence on the Mannish tongues.) Cf. also Nóm pl. Nómin in the language of Bëor's people (Silmarillion ch. 17; see below).


[1] Mannish

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