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Re: LoTR dialogue and soundtracks

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  • Carl F. Hostetter
    In Elfling message 33750 (
    Message 1 of 5 , Dec 31, 2006
      In Elfling message 33750 (<http://groups.yahoo.com/group/elfling/
      message/33750>), David Salo writes:

      > As for -ad forms having plurals: how plausible is it, really, that
      > words like eithad "insult" or erthad "union" would *not* have plurals?

      David here falls once again into the trap of arguing not on the basis
      of Sindarin (or even Noldorin) data, but rather from English.
      Certainly the _English_ words "insult" and "union" are fully concrete
      nouns _in English_ and have plural forms _in English_; but that does
      _not_ necessitate that the Sindarin words they gloss are and do as
      well. To see this, let's just replace languages in Salo's question:

      "how plausible is it, really, that words like (German) _Sprechen_
      "language" or (Latin) _legendo_ "reading" would *not* have plurals"?

      Sure, the English glosses can (and do) have plural forms. But the
      German and Latin words _do not_.

      > Why should one assume them to be exceptions?

      "Exceptions" to what? David makes it sound as though there were
      numerous examples of gerunds, of which it is being claimed that a few
      (like these two) do not have plural forms, while the rest do. The
      situation, again, is that we have lots (by the standards of this
      field) of apparent gerunds, _none_ of which have plural forms
      attested. Those are the facts. Coupled with another fact, namely,
      that many languages having formal gerunds (e.g. Latin and German)
      have no plural forms of gerunds, it is evident that there is no basis
      for claiming that Sindarin either does nor must have plural gerunds.
      (The best we can say is that it _may_ have plural gerunds, and we
      just happen not to have any attested yet.) So the only "assumption"
      being made is by David himself, who assumes that these _must_ have
      plural forms, and is content to make them up and present them as
      though they were attested.
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