2581Re: [elfscript] Re: Authenticity (Was: stop it please! will you!)
- Sep 6, 2003On Saturday, September 6, 2003, at 05:21 AM, BP Jonsson wrote:
> "Carl F. Hostetter" <Aelfwine@...> wrote:May I remind you that my reply was to the claim that we can "learn
>> But no, it is _not_ possible to "learn Gothic", not in the sense that
>> "learn" means when unqualifiedly applied to languages, such as "learn
>> Japanese" or "learn German". _No one knows_ how Gothic was actually
>> spoken. _No one knows_ for sure what was and what was not grammatical
>> in spoken Gothic. _All we know_ is theory derived from _written_
>> and other theoretical results.
>> And precisely the same is true of Tolkien's languages.
> Nobody has contested that.
>> Tolkien was able to write and speak (to some extent; we have onlyAnd you, Mr. Jonsson, are _completely_ wrong, as you would know if you
>> second-hand reports, not transcriptions, so know way of knowing what
>> Tolkien actually said, or how artificial or rehearsed it was)
>> sentences composed of words and grammatical devices according (for
>> the most part) with the predominant theories of the day concerning
>> Gothic (and, no doubt, with his own personal theories and
>> convictions). Nor was he entirely successful even at that, even in
>> writing, as he himself pointed out.
> And some are trying to do exactly the same with Tolkien's languages.
> You, Mr. Hostetter seem to find this morally reprehensible.
had read even just my most recent posts to this list, in which I have
_repeatedly_ denied that there is anything improper in doing so. My
issue is _only_ with the blurring of the line between scholarship and
creativity, specifically between fact and hypothesis: Tolkien never
attempted to pass his Gothic off as "genuine" or "authentic" Gothic.
(If anyone wonders why I feel so strongly the need, and claim the
right, to correct the charges and misrepresentations leveled against
me, how can you wonder after reading this? Here Mr. Jonsson, a
prominent contributor to this and other Tolkienian-linguistics lists,
lazily maintains a completely false opinion of me, because he can't be
bothered to read my words, but instead simply accepts the distortions
and misrepresentations fostered by Helge Fauskanger as true.)
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