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Re: [elfscript] precise rules for writing quenya with tengwar

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  • DDanielA@webtv.net
    Jeremie Knusel deithant: But since it was renamed to aha, wouldn t that mean that words previously written harma as first tengwa (like harma) became written
    Message 1 of 18 , Apr 13, 2001
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      Jeremie Knusel deithant:

      But since it was renamed to aha,
      wouldn't that mean that words
      previously written harma as first
      tengwa (like harma) became
      written with hyarmen?

      I don't think so. Tolkien said that 'harma', not 'hyarmen', was renamed
      'aha' as an initial tengwa. Why would he bother telling us what name
      'harma' had when it occurred initially if it didn't occur initially?

      Ok I didn't know that there were
      words with 'ñ' medially, followed
      by a vowel...

      Again, refer to JRRT himself. He refers to 'noldo' having the sound 'n'
      initially while retaining the sound 'ñ' medially. Again, why would
      this tengwa retain the 'ñ' sound medially if it, indeed, did not
      occur medially?

      About 'thúle' = 'th'...Okay, it's fine for historical purposes. I
      thought we were discussing Quenya in the Third Age! ;)

      A nasal sign in Quenya...I suppose it's a possibility.

      Angasule deithant:

      ng in anga and ng in ngoldo are
      not the same thing!

      Whoa! I did NOT say they were the same thing! Reread my English example.
      The 'ng' in 'singer' = 'ñ' (noldo), but the 'ng' in 'finger' = 'ñg'
      (anga). These two words do not properly rhyme in English because
      'singer' has a simple nasal, but 'finger' has a nasal + a velar
      consonant. How did you infer that I was saying they were the same? And
      you're right: the first consonant sound in 'anga' is 'ñ', but since
      it's 'ñ' + 'g', it's written with the tengwa 'anga'.

      What about ht? With harma. too?

      I think so. JRRT tells us that 'ht' has the sound [xt] (IPA
      reprsentation). 'Harma' can have the sound [x]; in fact, that was its
      original sound. I have seen no indication that 'hyarmen' ever
      represented any phoneme other than [h] or, earlier, [hj]. In addition,
      in his Old English mode, he used 'harma/tinco' and 'hwesta/tinco'
      ligatures to represent the [xt] sound written 'ht'. I realise that Old
      English is not Quenya, but he observes Quenya usage in several instances
      in this mode.

      One additional curiosity of Quenya: The combination 'lv' (as in
      'omentielvo') was often written 'lambe umbar', especially by elves. From
      LotR, Appendix E.

      I'm sure we all look forward to additional tengwar works of JRRT to come
      to light so that these questions can be answered by the inventor of
      Quenya!

      Namárië! Danny.
    • Angasule
      ... Does he say that? Can you quote? I lent my lotr, and it s in spanish anyway (they sometimes don t translate whole phrases :/ ). The sound ñ by itself
      Message 2 of 18 , Apr 13, 2001
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        DDanielA@... wrote:
        >
        > Ok I didn't know that there were
        > words with 'ñ' medially, followed
        > by a vowel...
        >
        > Again, refer to JRRT himself. He refers to 'noldo' having the sound 'n'
        > initially while retaining the sound 'ñ' medially. Again, why would
        > this tengwa retain the 'ñ' sound medially if it, indeed, did not
        > occur medially?
        Does he say that? Can you quote? I lent my lotr, and it's in spanish
        anyway (they sometimes don't translate whole phrases :/ ). The sound ñ
        by itself doesn't occur medially in Quenya outside of clusters, AFAIK.

        > Angasule deithant:
        >
        > ng in anga and ng in ngoldo are
        > not the same thing!
        >
        > Whoa! I did NOT say they were the same thing! Reread my English example.
        > The 'ng' in 'singer' = 'ñ' (noldo), but the 'ng' in 'finger' = 'ñg'
        > (anga). These two words do not properly rhyme in English because
        > 'singer' has a simple nasal, but 'finger' has a nasal + a velar
        > consonant. How did you infer that I was saying they were the same? And
        > you're right: the first consonant sound in 'anga' is 'ñ', but since
        > it's 'ñ' + 'g', it's written with the tengwa 'anga'.
        AFAIK, noldo was never used medially, although the sound ñ did in the
        clusters ng, nk, ngw, nqu, for each of which a tengwa exists and in any
        case if they weren't written with their own tengwa they'd be written as
        k + nasal bar or qu + nasal bar rather than noldo + k or noldo + qu
        which would be a clumsy construction. Btw, I'm not a native english
        speaker and don't know if you are one, either, didn't know there was a
        difference between singer and finger, email is not the best place to
        talk about phonetics anyway :)
        Angasule
      • Jeremie Knusel
        ... I can t find where I saw it but as example, in the dictionnaire des langues elfiques , p. 113, there is a tengwar transcribe of menelluin irildeo
        Message 3 of 18 , Apr 14, 2001
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          > A dot below the tengwa? I hadn't read about this one, where did Tolkien
          > mention/use it?

          I can't find where I saw it but as example, in the "dictionnaire des langues
          elfiques", p. 113, there is a tengwar transcribe of "menelluin irildeo
          ondolindello" that comes from "Tolkien, Life and Legend" p 77, and the last
          'n' of menelluin is written with númen and a dot bellow
        • Jeremie Knusel
          ... In appendix E, it s said: Thus No. 11 was called harma when it represented the spirant ch in all positions, but when this sound became breath h initially
          Message 4 of 18 , Apr 14, 2001
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            > I don't think so. Tolkien said that 'harma', not 'hyarmen', was renamed
            > 'aha' as an initial tengwa. Why would he bother telling us what name
            > 'harma' had when it occurred initially if it didn't occur initially?

            In appendix E, it's said:
            "Thus No. 11 was called harma when it represented the spirant ch in all
            positions, but when this sound became breath h initially (though remaining
            medially) the name aha was devised"

            I understand that harma was no longer used to write the word harma (for
            example), since the sound became breath h, and so it was not logical to use
            the name harma for this tengwa, so it's name was changed to aha, which is
            still written with harma

            in the footnote:
            "For breath h Quenya originally used a simple raised stem without bow,
            called halla 'tall'. This could be placed before a consonant to indicate
            that it was unvoiced and breathed; voiceless r and l were usually so
            expressed and are transcribed hr, hl. Later 33 was used for independent h,
            and the value of hy (its older value) was represented by adding the tehta
            for following y"

            Here I understand that when harma could no longer represent the h, because
            it was pronunced as a breath h, it was replaced by hyarmen (which was
            previously used just to represent a kind of ich-laut sound. when it became
            necessary, word-initially, to know that it represented ich-laut (written
            'hy') and not breath h, one added two dots bellow)

            > One additional curiosity of Quenya: The combination 'lv' (as in
            > 'omentielvo') was often written 'lambe umbar', especially by elves. From
            > LotR, Appendix E.

            Thanks, I had not noticed that :)

            > I'm sure we all look forward to additional tengwar works of JRRT to come
            > to light so that these questions can be answered by the inventor of
            > Quenya!

            Yes... do one know anything about future publications?


            Jeremie
          • DDanielA@webtv.net
            Angasule deithant: Does he say that? Can you quote? … The sound ñ by itself doesn t occur medially in Quenya outside of clusters, AFAIK I wish I remembered
            Message 5 of 18 , Apr 14, 2001
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              Angasule deithant:

              Does he say that? Can you
              quote? … The sound ñ by itself
              doesn't occur medially in
              Quenya outside of clusters,
              AFAIK

              I wish I remembered where I read it. But anyway initial 'noldo' of any
              verb beginning with that letter becomes a medial 'ñ' when preceded by
              a perfect verbal augment. That's simple logic.

              Btw, I'm not a native english
              speaker and don't know if you
              are one, either … email is not
              the best place to talk about
              phonetics anyway :)

              Yes, I am a native speaker of English. Actually, I was brought up
              speaking English, French and modern Greek. But I was speaking as a
              linguistics major on the difference between 'ñ' and 'ñg', not as a
              native-speaking casual observer. I agree that e-mail is not the best
              place to talk about phonetics, but it's all we have, and the evolution
              of Quenya orthography is bound up with phonetics. It's hard to talk
              about one without bringing up the other.

              Jeremie Knusel deithant:
              I understand that harma was
              no longer used to write the word
              harma (for example), since the
              sound became breath h, and so
              it was not logical to use the name
              harma for this tengwa, so it's
              name was changed to aha,
              which is still written with harma.

              So we are to disregard Professor Tolkien when he said that initial 'aha'
              (= 'harma')
              has the sound of simple [h]? I tend to take Tolkien as his word, and
              nowhere did he say that all words beginning with 'harma' should change
              their spelling to 'hyarmen'.
              What he did say is that when words beginning with 'harma' began to be
              pronounced with a breath 'h', the name of the tengwa was changed to
              'aha' to reflect the difference in pronunciation. If 'harma'/'aha' can
              be pronounced as [h]... and JRRT stated that it could... why would one
              need to change the spelling?

              Again, there are bound to be differences in opinion, and I can only
              present what I understand the scant written evidence to mean. Any of us
              can be mistaken...

              Namárië! Danny.
            • Angasule
              ... Is the ui written as a diphthong or how? If there s just an u tehta then the underdot could be the previous i ? If not it must be a final e as Ales
              Message 6 of 18 , Apr 15, 2001
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                Jeremie Knusel wrote:
                >
                > > A dot below the tengwa? I hadn't read about this one, where did Tolkien
                > > mention/use it?
                >
                > I can't find where I saw it but as example, in the "dictionnaire des langues
                > elfiques", p. 113, there is a tengwar transcribe of "menelluin irildeo
                > ondolindello" that comes from "Tolkien, Life and Legend" p 77, and the last
                > 'n' of menelluin is written with númen and a dot bellow
                Is the 'ui' written as a diphthong or how? If there's just an 'u' tehta
                then the underdot could be the previous 'i'? If not it must be a final e
                as Ales Bican said.
                Angasule
              • Angasule
                ... Since words that begin with noldo come from original ng-, with an augment they would go from ñ- to augment-ng-. In case original ñ- remained so and
                Message 7 of 18 , Apr 15, 2001
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                  DDanielA@... wrote:
                  >
                  > Angasule deithant:
                  >
                  > Does he say that? Can you
                  > quote? … The sound ñ by itself
                  > doesn't occur medially in
                  > Quenya outside of clusters,
                  > AFAIK
                  >
                  > I wish I remembered where I read it. But anyway initial 'noldo' of any
                  > verb beginning with that letter becomes a medial 'ñ' when preceded by
                  > a perfect verbal augment. That's simple logic.
                  Since words that begin with noldo come from original ng-, with an
                  augment they would go from ñ- to augment-ng-. In case original ñ-
                  remained so and didn't change to h- (see the mail I answered to Ales
                  Bican about this) there still wouldn't be initial ñ, since medial ñ
                  dissapeared lengthening the previous vowel.

                  > Yes, I am a native speaker of English. Actually, I was brought up
                  > speaking English, French and modern Greek. But I was speaking as a
                  > linguistics major on the difference between 'ñ' and 'ñg', not as a
                  > native-speaking casual observer.
                  But the confusion was in the English example :) I always prefer using
                  final written -ng to exemplify ñ.
                  Angasule
                • Jeremie Knusel
                  ... Tolkien ... langues ... last ... There is a u tehta above lambe, and a i tehta on a short carrier Jeremie
                  Message 8 of 18 , Apr 15, 2001
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                    > > > A dot below the tengwa? I hadn't read about this one, where did
                    Tolkien
                    > > > mention/use it?
                    > >
                    > > I can't find where I saw it but as example, in the "dictionnaire des
                    langues
                    > > elfiques", p. 113, there is a tengwar transcribe of "menelluin irildeo
                    > > ondolindello" that comes from "Tolkien, Life and Legend" p 77, and the
                    last
                    > > 'n' of menelluin is written with númen and a dot bellow
                    > Is the 'ui' written as a diphthong or how? If there's just an 'u' tehta
                    > then the underdot could be the previous 'i'? If not it must be a final e
                    > as Ales Bican said.
                    > Angasule

                    There is a 'u' tehta above lambe, and a 'i' tehta on a short carrier

                    Jeremie
                  • Jeremie Knusel
                    ... To take Tolkien as his word, he didn t talk about initial aha but about initial breath h ... I give the quote again: Thus No. 11 was called harma when
                    Message 9 of 18 , Apr 15, 2001
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                      > So we are to disregard Professor Tolkien when he said that initial 'aha'
                      > (= 'harma')
                      > has the sound of simple [h]? I tend to take Tolkien as his word, and
                      > nowhere did he say that all words beginning with 'harma' should change
                      > their spelling to 'hyarmen'.
                      > What he did say is that when words beginning with 'harma' began to be
                      > pronounced with a breath 'h', the name of the tengwa was changed to
                      > 'aha' to reflect the difference in pronunciation. If 'harma'/'aha' can
                      > be pronounced as [h]... and JRRT stated that it could... why would one
                      > need to change the spelling?

                      To take Tolkien as his word, he didn't talk about "initial aha" but about
                      "initial breath h"... I give the quote again:
                      "Thus No. 11 was called harma when it represented the spirant ch in all
                      positions, but when this sound became breath h initially (though remaining
                      medially) the name aha was devised"

                      I agree that it's not clear. If there were only the first sentence (before
                      the coma), I would understand that there was a time where harma represented
                      [x] in all positions, then logicaly a time where it represented [x] in some
                      positions and an other sound in another position. But with just this
                      sentence, it could also be understood that first harma was used in all
                      position (to represent [x]) and then that it was no longer used in all
                      position, because a tengwa would have replaced harma in some special
                      position (e.g. initially). That is what I understand, because of the other
                      sentences:

                      First, why would it be necessary to change the name of the tengwa, if it was
                      used to represend both [x] and breath h? Keeping the name 'harma' would as
                      well represent the breath-h function of the tengwa 'harma' as the name 'aha'
                      would represent the [x] function of the same tengwa...
                      So it seems logical to me that if the elves decided to use the name 'aha',
                      whose 'h' is still pronunced [x], it was because
                      tengwa harma=[x] and not breath h.

                      Now the only remaining problem is: "if harma, or rather aha, could no longer
                      be used to write initial 'h', how was it written?"
                      And this problem is solved by the footnote:
                      "Later 33 was used for independent h,
                      and the value of hy (its older value) was represented by adding the tehta
                      for following y"

                      So hyarmen was used to replace harma. Why would it have been necessary to
                      add a new function to hyarmen (e.g. breath-h), if harma was still used for
                      every 'h' it was used for before? (mmm I feel it's not perfect English,
                      sorry)

                      I hope this text is not too confused...


                      Jeremie
                    • Jeremie Knusel
                      ... Right, about that I was given the example ñolmo - lambengolmo Jeremie
                      Message 10 of 18 , Apr 15, 2001
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                        > > Angasule deithant:
                        > >
                        > > Does he say that? Can you
                        > > quote? . The sound ñ by itself
                        > > doesn't occur medially in
                        > > Quenya outside of clusters,
                        > > AFAIK
                        > >
                        > > I wish I remembered where I read it. But anyway initial 'noldo' of any
                        > > verb beginning with that letter becomes a medial 'ñ' when preceded by
                        > > a perfect verbal augment. That's simple logic.
                        > Since words that begin with noldo come from original ng-, with an
                        > augment they would go from ñ- to augment-ng-. In case original ñ-
                        > remained so and didn't change to h- (see the mail I answered to Ales
                        > Bican about this) there still wouldn't be initial ñ, since medial ñ
                        > dissapeared lengthening the previous vowel.

                        Right, about that I was given the example "ñolmo -> lambengolmo"


                        Jeremie
                      • Mans Bjorkman
                        Hello people! Sorry I m late. ... Since _hr_ must always be followed by a vowel I think _r_ would always be written with , if the system of the
                        Message 11 of 18 , Apr 16, 2001
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                          Hello people! Sorry I'm late.

                          Jeremie Knusel wrote:
                          >
                          > Halla:
                          > -before 'l' or 'r' ('hr' and 'hl' occur virtually always word-initially)
                          > -'r' could be rómen as well as óre

                          Since _hr_ must always be followed by a vowel I think _r_ would always
                          be written with <rómen>, if the system of the Namárie inscription is
                          followed.


                          > -a tilde above a tengwa preceded by 'n', 'm' or 'ñ' (and so no tengwa for
                          > the 'n', 'm' or 'ñ')

                          This actually occurs in some Quenya inscriptions, but they generally
                          seem to be influenced by Westron or Sindarin conventions.


                          --
                          Måns Björkman "Mun þu mik!
                          Störtloppsvägen 8, III Man þik.
                          SE-129 46 Hägersten Un þu mer!
                          Sweden http://hem.passagen.se/mansb An þer."
                        • Mans Bjorkman
                          ... Quite true. However, I strongly believe was, at least, a valid alternative still in the Third Age. The footnote says: ... [halla] could be placed
                          Message 12 of 18 , Apr 16, 2001
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                            DDanielA@... wrote:
                            >
                            > Well, there are bound to be differences of opinion until more of JRRT's
                            > tengwar specimens surface. Here's where my opinions differ from the ones
                            > Jeremie presented.
                            >
                            > Halla: We have no clear-cut rule. Professor Tolkien's only reference to
                            > the 'halla' suggests that it might not have survived into later Quenya
                            > in any rôle. His use of the word 'original' is vague. It's possible
                            > that 'hr' and 'hl' were written 'hyarmen rómen' and 'hyarmen lambe' in
                            > the Third Age. It's possible that there were other alternatives. We
                            > don't know.

                            Quite true. However, I strongly believe <halla> was, at least, a valid
                            alternative still in the Third Age. The footnote says: "... [halla]
                            could be placed before a consonant to indicate that it was unvoiced and
                            breathed; voiceless _r_ and _l_ were usually so expressed and are
                            transcribed _hr_, _hl_." I can only interpret this as saying that some
                            of Tolkien's sources actually used <halla> + r/l, which in The Lord of
                            the Rings is transcribed _hr_, _hl_.


                            > Personally, I doubt the validity of using 'rómen nuquerna'
                            > and 'lambe nuquerna' as I've seen some do to represent 'hr' and 'hl'.

                            I agree. There is no support for this whatsoever in the sources.


                            > Hyarmen: For any word initially? Not so! We have Professor Tolkien's own
                            > statement that 'harma' sometimes represented an 'h' initially and was
                            > then called 'aha'. The initial 'h' in the word 'harma' was, in fact, a
                            > 'harma' (or, rather 'aha', but of course it's the same tengwa!), not
                            > 'hyarmen'.

                            "No. 11 was called _harma_ when it represented the spirant _ch_ in all
                            positions, but when this sound became breath _h_ initially (though
                            remaining medially) the name _aha_ was devised."

                            So:
                            1) <harma> first represented [x] in all positions. The letter was
                            pronunced [xarma].
                            2) [x] became [h] initially. From this follows that the pronounciation
                            became [harma].
                            3) <harma> was renamed <aha>, pronounced [axa]. The name change was
                            obviously made to retain the pronounciation [x] of the letter.


                            > Thúle: For 'th'? In Quenya? Mature Quenya did not possess the 'th'
                            > phoneme.

                            "TH ... had become _s_ in spoken Quenya, though still written with a
                            different letter". QED.


                            > Noldo: Professor Tolkien himself tells us that 'ñoldo' can occur
                            > medially.

                            As far as I know, all he says is that the letter combination NG occurs
                            medially, and that the sound of _sing_ "also occurred initally in
                            Quenya, but has been transcribed _n_ (as in _Noldo_), according to the
                            pronounciation of the Third Age."


                            > A tilde over a tengwa: I was under the impression that the nasal sign
                            > was originally used in Sindarin because all 'nasal + consonant'
                            > combinations possible in Quenya were written with single tengwar. Does
                            > anyone know of a Quenya word that would use a nasal sign?

                            No, all nasals are covered in the conventional Quenya mode.


                            > There is one final vagary: 'anna'. We know that 'anna' must be
                            > accompanied by two under-imposed dots to represent the sound 'y' ( or
                            > IPA [j]), and that 'anna' alone must have a rôle of a carrier of
                            > sorts. Måns uses 'anna' + accent tehta as the first letter of the word
                            > 'ëar' in his calligraphy rendition of the Markirya Boat Poem (btw, a
                            > beautifully rendered manuscript, Måns!), but is this attested, or
                            > simply used to avoid writing two short carriers together? Do we have any
                            > information about the use of 'anna' without the dots? Apparently the
                            > word 'anna' begins with the tengwa of that name.

                            In the short text "Noldorin words for Language" (Vinyar Tengwar #39) p.
                            17, we learn that <anna> originally represented [3], i.e. a spirant _g_
                            -- a sound that had, in fact, vanished from the language in Feanor's
                            time. Although this is entirely unattested, one could therefore
                            theoretically use <anna> in positions where this sound occurred earlier.
                            That is the way I use it in my _Markirya_ rendition: _ear_ derives from
                            earlier *_gayar_ (Tolkien changed his mind several times about the
                            etymology of this word, but see The Peoples of Middle-earth, "The
                            Shibboleth of Fëanor" note 45). Having said this, it *is* nice to be
                            able to avoid consecutive vowel-carriers! :-)


                            Yours,
                            Måns

                            --
                            Måns Björkman "Mun þu mik!
                            Störtloppsvägen 8, III Man þik.
                            SE-129 46 Hägersten Un þu mer!
                            Sweden http://hem.passagen.se/mansb An þer."
                          • Lisa Star
                            ... ... **I think you are right, and I have never felt that Tolkien s explanation made sense. For one thing, when a
                            Message 13 of 18 , Apr 16, 2001
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                              >From: "Jeremie Knusel" <elendur@...>

                              <snip long, reasonably clear explanation>

                              >So hyarmen was used to replace harma. Why would it have been necessary to
                              >add a new function to hyarmen (e.g. breath-h), if harma was still used for
                              >every 'h' it was used for before? (mmm I feel it's not perfect English,
                              >sorry)
                              >
                              >I hope this text is not too confused...

                              **I think you are right, and I have never felt that Tolkien's explanation
                              made sense. For one thing, when a sound change occurs in a language, the
                              spelling usually remains the same for a long time. Ex., the Latin word
                              circus was originally pronounced with both the c's as k's. Over time, there
                              was a sound change that caused c to be pronounced as s before a front vowel,
                              but we still spell it with two c's, even though it is ridiculous and
                              confusing. Some languages are normally spelled accurately, and the elves
                              were presumably more linguistically aware than most people, but writing is
                              never as accurate as native speakers think it is, except right after a major
                              spelling reform.

                              **I thought the explanation of the switch of harma to aha was so strange
                              that I invented a new explanation for it. I decided that the elves altered
                              the name of the letter from a word meaning 'treasure' to a word meaning
                              'rage' in acknowledgement of the devastation caused by Feanor's attempts to
                              regain the Silmarils--i.e., the Wars of the Jewels. This is a fantasy of
                              course, but it makes better sense then Tolkien's explantion. I wonder what
                              his real reason was? Often when he gives some very strange convoluted
                              reason for something, it's because he (seems to) want to avoid a simpler
                              explanation that everyone would recognize the source for. I don't know what
                              that would be here, though.

                              ** Lisa Star
                              ** LisaStar@...

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