Dave 'Hísilómë' wrote:
> while "working" with your orthographic English tehtar mode (this refers back again to
> message #2525), J. Mach Wust, a few things occured to me that I'd like to bring up here:
> a) I gather that where "k" is pronounced (as in "kiss" or "Kent"), it is written as quesse, as
> is "hard c" ("cat"). There seem to be no attested spellings in the relevant modes (DTS 5,
> 10, 62), but maybe in others?
I've based this on analogy to the orthographic English full writing. We need to assume that
they work the same way (unless we know better) if we want to reconstruct a fully usable
orthographic tehtar mode.
> b) Neither do we see how silent "k" would be spelled, particularly in the frequent
> combination "kn" ("know, knight, knife, knee etc"). This being an orthographic mode, I
> guess you would propose to spell "kn" with quesse plus nuumen (rather than just
It's not attested. However, the transcription of other silent consonants is attested in the
> c) Am I correct in assuming that the spelling of "soft c" (/s/) as silme nuquerna is based
> on the orthographic full mode as in the King's Letter ("especial")? Now this is really a
> different sound (i.e. the same sound as in English "shall", which is represented by harma
> in this mode where it is actually spelled "sh", cf. "wish" in DTS 10) than the "soft c" in
> your other, unattested (marked with asterisk) example "nice". So, do you have yet
> another source, or is this based "on the general logic of tengwar use"?
See e.g. the word "explanations" in DTS 10: It's written with tinco, in spite of the sh-
pronunciation. BTW, I don't know whether we can assume that Tolkien really had a /S/ in
these words and not a /sj/. We'd have to look up in a traditional RP dictionary. I think I
remember that Tolkien's phonemic modes don't transcribe /S/ in analogous cases, but /
sj/, though I'm not sure any more.
> Anyway, I guess
> you propose to use silme nuquerna for both the "sh" and the "s" sounds whenever they
> are spelled with "c"?
> d) There are a few other unattested assignments of tengwar to sounds where I'm plain
> curious whether they're based on general logic/LotR appendices or on attested usages
> I'm not aware of (without exception, I find them very useful, and would like to know if
> they are based on anything in Tolkien's own samples):
> 1) extended tinco for "th" as in "*Thames" (not voiced or unvoiced "th" as in "this" or
> 2) extended parma for "th" as in "*philosophy";
I'm not so sure about these two any more, since DTS 61 turns out to have hwesta for "ch"
pronounced /k/ (in "Michael"), not extended quesse, as I was presuming. So we have a
number of different attestations for "ch" pronounced /k/:
(a) Hwesta: DTS 62.
(b) Extended Quesse: DTS 10.
(c) Quesse with vertical stroke (which might be analyzed as halla) below: Full writing mode
of DTS 10.
All attested samples of stop consonant + h that don't have stop pronunciation use the
tengwar of the fricative lines (as in (a)): thúle/anto for th, anca for gh, and -in Sindarin
modes- formen for ph (these Sindarin modes, however, might be considered phonemic
For the transcription of "Thames", (a) doesn't work, I think. Maybe (c) is preferrable to (b),
since this use is also mentioned in app. E, whereas (b) is only found in DTS 10 (I hope I'm
not wrong). (b), however, seems to be more intuitive. A plain tinco could be thought of as
a parallel to the plain tengwa in (a).
For the transcription of the gh in "ghost", plain anca is the easiest transcription, in analogy
to (a), even though this requires the assumption that a silent letter and a pronounced
letter may be written with the same sign (there's no contrary evidence for the consonants,
but only for the vowel "e").
In the case of ph, the h really changes the pronunciation, so it might be considered to be
written with formen in analogy to th written with thúle/anto. However, the orthographical
distinction might as well be considered to be more important...
I think the most important thing is to choose the same transcription for all cases. This is,
I'd recommend to use an analogous transcription for ch (/k/) as for th (/t/). Either
extended tengwar for both (b), stop + stroke above for both (c). The case of (a) isn't clear:
Hwesta and... tinco? ... or hwesta and tinco + stroke? ... or hwesta and extend tinco?
I think the easiest way is to represent ch (/k/), gh, ph, th (/t/) with hwesta, anga, formen,
tinco + vertical stroke below.
> 3) quesse with under-bar for "ck" (you give no example, but this would have to be the
> sound in "brick, thick, flack" etc);
Analogy to other English orthographic modes.
> 4) quesse with modified U-tehta above for "qu" as in "*quiet";
Analogy to other cases of qu/kw (I don't know whether there are any in the orthographic
modes at all; I'd call it a ).
> 5) and the spellings of ge/gu in certain combinations as ungwe with under-dot/ungwe
> with modified U-tehta above.
The question of "ge" already arose in the original discussion of the #2525, and I changed
my mind. I'd now recommend to transcribe these e as normal vowels. However, I'd still
recommend to transcribe gue/gui with the w-tehta.
> e) in the vowel section, the spellings of "oa" ("*boat"), "oe" ("*goes"), "ei/ai"
> ("*eight/*Daisy"), "eo" ("*people"), "ay" ("*day") as "stemless calma with O-tehta on top,
> yanta with O-tehta on top, anna with E/A-tehta on top, uure with E-tehta on top and
> anna with A-tehta on top", respectively.
The spelling of eo with úre is very hypothetical, based only on the spelling of ae with yanta
and on the wish to have only one vowel sign per syllable, as in most tengwar modes.
> Also, would you use the spelling "stemless calma with E-tehta on top" (attested in DTS
> 62, "earth") also where it is pronounced differently (i.e. in "please, league, streak, peak
> etc")? If not how would you spell "ea" where it is pronounced like "ee"?
Exactly. I think there are no cases where the orthographic modes would require any vowels
by pronunciation (except for e, which may however be considered rather an orthographic
feature that modifies other vowels.
> For example, would you spell "league"
> as "lambe + stemless calma with E-tehta on top + ungwe with modified U-curl on top
> and under-dot,
That's my transcription!
> BTW, in message #4380 you wrote on this problem (how to spell the "ea" in "dear", i.e.
> where it's pronounced as "ee") that "there are two different attested spellings. Which one
> should be recommended? I recommend the one that fits better in the general principles
> of Tolkien's tengwar use."
> Now I'm not sure what you mean by "two different attested spellings". What is the other
> attested spelling of "dear" (in an orthographic Tehta mode)?
I referred to the examples of "dear" and of "earth", taking for granted that (as in the
orthographic full writing and as in the other vowels), the pronunciation doesn't matter.
j. 'mach' wust