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236Re: [elfscript] Tehta mode for sindarin

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  • DDanielA@webtv.net
    Apr 23, 2001
      Okay, here's some of my reasoning. We know that there exists at least
      one tehta mode used to represent Sindarin, and that it was used by the
      Edain in Gondor, or at least in Minas Tirith. I believe that most of
      Gondor probably used a full-writing mode, but Minas Tirith, being the
      home of the Royal See, often employed an older mode for ceremonal use.
      This older mode was the tehta mode. Historically speaking, consonantal
      writing systems do not derive from full alphabetic scripts, but
      consonantal systems (like the tehta modes) often evolve into
      full-writing scripts. Tolkien himself alluded to the fact that the tehta
      modes were older than the full-writing modes. That does not mean that
      the 'mode of Minas Tirith' from KL, version III is older than the mode
      of Beleriand, but it is most probably the ancestor of version I's mode.
      So where does this tehta mode have its origin? Surely not in the mode of
      Beleriand; its treatment of simple nasals and the 'rómen/óre'
      situation seems to preclude that theory, plus, as stated before, tehta
      modes do not derive from full-writing modes. My theory is that the mode
      of Beleriand and the 'mode of Minas Tirith' both find their origins in
      the hypothetical Sindarin tehta mode, but that the mode of Beleriand
      evolved into a full-writing system much earlier than that of Gondor. I
      believe that this hypothetical mode used Series III for the velars.
      Måns pointed out to me in an elfscript post that if a choice for using
      III or IV were to be made, III is more economical. I agree. The Edain
      had the need for both a velar and a palatal series for Adûnaic, and
      they used III for the palatals and IV for the velars, and transferred
      this use to their Sindarin modes. The Grey Elves, however, had no need
      for both series. Following the Quenya practice, III was used as their
      I do NOT agree that the mode of Beleriand was the oldest tengwar mode
      used to write Sindarin. I have seen no evidence to support this. And,
      aside from the King's Letter, we have JRRT's assertion that Sindarin was
      written in tehta modes in App. E when he explains the placement of
      tehtar on the preceding or following tengwar. He also said that the
      tengwar had evolved into full alphabetic writing, but that the older
      tehta modes were still in use in some places. He didn't specifically
      mention Sindarin in this context, but the possibility (and probability)
      Anyway, that's my thoughts on the subject!
      Cuio mae, Danny.
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