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Re: Orthographic English Tehtar Mode: In favour of extended stems

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  • i_degilbor
    ... And I would agree in theory , but since /x/ is not a modern English phoneme, hwesta is available for other uses in English modes. Why reserve the
    Message 1 of 14 , Dec 21, 2004
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      Teithant Dave:
      >I agree that hwesta is not usually used in English
      >modes (though both Dan Smith and 'Mach' have assigned
      >the theoretical value of /x/

      And I would agree 'in theory', but since /x/ is not a modern English phoneme, hwesta is available for other uses in English modes. Why reserve the character for a sound that doesn't appear in the language one is using?

      >while Chris McKay in his Tengwar Textbook
      >also mentions the value "qu" (khw or kw) as in
      >"Queen"

      This is one of quite a few features in Chris's work with which I disagree. We have an example of 'qu' = /kw/ in a phonemic mode (Treebeard Page). Since it fits in with the use of téma IV for simple velars, I see no reason not to use it in an orthographic mode whether full writing or with ómatehtar.

      Cuio mae, Danny.
    • Dave
      ... [Right! Except maybe in certain dialects/accents, e.g. in Scotland, and not even there the difference between loch (with /x/) and lock (with /k/) seems
      Message 2 of 14 , Dec 22, 2004
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        Teithant Dave:
        >>I agree that hwesta is not usually used in English
        >>modes (though both Dan Smith and 'Mach' have assigned
        >>the theoretical value of /x/.

        >And I would agree 'in theory', but since /x/ is not a modern English phoneme, hwesta is available for other uses in >English modes. Why reserve the character for a sound that doesn't appear in the language one is using?

        [Right! Except maybe in certain dialects/accents, e.g. in Scotland, and not even there the difference between "loch" (with /x/) and "lock" (with /k/) seems to be observed by all speakers.]

        >>while Chris McKay in his Tengwar Textbook
        >>also mentions the value "qu" (khw or kw) as in
        >>"Queen".

        >This is one of quite a few features in Chris's work with which I disagree. We have an example of 'qu' = /kw/ in a >phonemic mode (Treebeard Page). Since it fits in with the use of téma IV for simple velars, I see no reason not to use it >in an orthographic mode whether full writing or with ómatehtar.

        [Yes, in "sequel". It's never used for that sound in orthographic modes it seems.
        I didn't deny that one can use hwesta for ch = /k/, of course (after all, it's one of Tolkien's three attested spellings for that sound!), but since the extended stem quesse/hwesta is also attested (DTS 10), and this fits in well with other spellings I propose (e.g. extended stem tinco/thuule for th = /t/, which you also use I gather), I'd still prefer it in my writing.]


        Hísilómë









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      • Benct Philip Jonsson
        ... Hardly surprising since Tolkien doesn t discuss the writing of English with Tengwar in App E. This situation in English is a decided oddity without any
        Message 3 of 14 , Dec 22, 2004
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          Dave wrote:

          > I also noted that Chris McKay says in his Tengwar Textbook
          > ("Original Mode") that "Tolkien in App E makes no distinction
          > between 'gh' as in 'ghost', 'enough' and 'bought'". It seems to
          > me that Tolkien does not explicitly say that a distinction
          > should be made, but neither does he explicitly say it should
          > not.

          Hardly surprising since Tolkien doesn't discuss the writing
          of English with Tengwar in App E. This situation in English
          is a decided oddity without any parallels in Quenya or Sindarin,
          or as far as we know Westron, save the persistence of two
          spellings for /s/ and /n/ in Quenya. That is a case of
          historical spelling, and if one is to use historical spelling
          when writing English in Tengwar, similar to the Roman spelling
          of English, then no diacritic is needed to distinguish different
          pronunciations of _gh_. This being said I will just mention
          the possibility of indicating the pronunciation by tehtar, e.g.
          a w-tehta for the /f/-pronunciation and a underbar for the
          /g/-pronunciation.

          --

          /BP 8^)>
          --
          Benct Philip Jonsson -- melroch at melroch dot se

          Solitudinem faciunt pacem appellant!
          (Tacitus)
        • Dave
          ... [Well, apart from one paragraph that is :). The one that starts: There was of course no mode for the representation of English. One adequate
          Message 4 of 14 , Dec 22, 2004
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            Dave wrote:

            >> I also noted that Chris McKay says in his Tengwar Textbook
            >> ("Original Mode") that "Tolkien in App E makes no distinction
            >> between 'gh' as in 'ghost', 'enough' and 'bought'". It seems to
            >> me that Tolkien does not explicitly say that a distinction
            >> should be made, but neither does he explicitly say it should
            >> not.

            Melroch replied:
            >Hardly surprising since Tolkien doesn't discuss the writing
            >of English with Tengwar in App E.

            [Well, apart from one paragraph that is :). The one that starts:
            "There was of course no 'mode' for the representation of English. One adequate phonetically could be devised from the Feanorian system. The brief example on the title-page does not exhibit this. (...)"
            But you're right, there is no detailed discussion.

            But Tolkien does make it clear that the Tengwar are a set of symbols whose use is not restricted to Elvish tongues such as Quenya and Sindarin, or to Westron for that matter (as is of course also evident from the fact alone that he uses the tengwar for English more often than for any other tongue). He says that "[tengwar script] was, rather, a system of consonantal signs, of similar shapes and style, which could be adapted at choice or convenience to represent the consonants of languages observed (or devised) by the Eldar. None of the letters had in itself a fixed value; but certain relations between them were gradually recognized."

            Of course one could argue that modern English was not a language the Eldar could have observed or devised, but again, the fact that Tolkien himself used tengwar frequently to write English, developing even several "modes", phonetic/phonemic/orthographic, full or tehta (admittedly not all fully developed or equally well attested), shows that he himself did not take such a strict view. And he clearly points out that the tengwar are suited for adaptation "at choice or convenience", as is indeed absolutely necessary when trying to use them for different languages.

            I am just bringing this up to show that while Tolkien in App E discusses hardly any _specifics_ of tengwar usage for English in particular, quite a bit might be inferred from the more general statements he makes about the application of Feanor's script.]

            Melroch:
            >This situation in English
            >is a decided oddity without any parallels in Quenya or Sindarin,
            >or as far as we know Westron, save the persistence of two
            >spellings for /s/ and /n/ in Quenya. That is a case of
            >historical spelling, and if one is to use historical spelling
            >when writing English in Tengwar, similar to the Roman spelling
            >of English, then no diacritic is needed to distinguish different
            >pronunciations of _gh_. This being said I will just mention
            >the possibility of indicating the pronunciation by tehtar, e.g.
            >a w-tehta for the /f/-pronunciation and a underbar for the
            >/g/-pronunciation.

            [Hm. You are not very specific. The w-tehta/under-bar would go with what tengwa? Ungwe? Or unque? And what would the rationale be? And, more importantly, if you say that one sign is enough for all three kinds of "gh", could one then (as I mentioned in a previous mail) not simply use the one that's clearly attested in Tolkien's writing, i.e. unque ("Hugh", DTS 10) to cover all phonetically distinct incidences of "gh"?

            But let's not forget that Tolkien himself made distinctions sometimes where strictly speaking they are not necessary in an orthographical/historical spelling mode, such as using separate tengwa for hard and soft "th" (two distinct sounds that also exist in Sindarin, and thus were "already" conveniently endowed with two separate tengwar).

            I gather you are not very fond of the "extended-stem" solutions for aspirated consonants (maybe also for aesthetic reasons?--tastes differ :)). Again, Tolkien himself used extended quesse (or hwesta) for "ch" (k+h) in DTS 10, _not_ calma, which he uses for "ch" as in "church" (/tS/) and which is attested in both orthographic tehta and orthographic full modes, and would thus have been an "obvious" choice if he wanted to spell all occurences of "ch" the same way. And he states in App E, when analysing the Feanorian letters, that "the original Feanorian system also possessed a grade with extended stems, both above and belowe the line. These usually represented aspirated consonants (e.g. _t+h, p+h, k+h_), but might represent other consonantal variations as required."

            Seeing that Tolkien provided both a theoretical rationale, and put it into practice himself when using tengwa to write _English_ ("Christmas", DTS 10), I don't see why we shouldn't use extended tinco/parma/quesse/ungwe for t+h, p+h (I admit that this one could be problematic because it's really /f/, but as 'Wust' has also pointed out, it might be desirable to make an orthographic distinction in a "spelling mode" between "f" and "ph"), c(/k/)+h and g+h.

            Of course, other solutions are also possible. Using the attested unque for all instances of "gh" would be intelligible, and in the case of "g", for example, Tolkien as far as I know did not distinguish between different pronunciations (/dZ/ and /g/), either. Then again, in other instances he did (see above).
            In English with its rather "irregular" spelling, mostly for historical reasons, there are a considerable number of cases of different sounds spelled with the same letter(s), or the same sound(s) spelled with different letters, both in the vowel and the consonant sections. I think there will always be _some_ element of arbitrariness in how far one decides to reflect, or not reflect, this in _orthographic_ spelling. This is certainly the case in Tolkien's own English tengwar writing, which is by no means a "one-to-one" transcription of the Roman letters (otherwise, one might expect to see for example "gh" spelled as ungwe + hyarmen, or "th" as tinco + hyarmen). Not to mention the fact that on top of all this, Tolkien sometimes seems to simply have changed his mind :), as evident from the now three attested spellings for "ch" = k+h = /k/.


            Hísilómë


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          • j_mach_wust
            (This time, I ve tried not to be hasty!) ... I think this is an important point, since it explains why there are alternations in the representation of ch =
            Message 5 of 14 , Dec 23, 2004
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              (This time, I've tried not to be hasty!)

              Danny Andriës wrote:
              > Perhaps Tolkien chose hwesta for 'ch' because it is not used for
              > anything else when writing English, thus it is available for
              > 'ch' = /k/. Concerning 'ch' = /k/ and 'th' = /t/, keep in mind
              > that examples of such spellings are not especially common in
              > English.

              I think this is an important point, since it explains why there are
              alternations in the representation of ch = /k/.

              Another important point is that none of the attested transcriptions of
              ch = /k/ uses plain quesse. I think this allows us the hypothesis that
              th = /t/ isn't spelt with plain tinco either.


              Dave 'Hísilómë' wrote:
              > Since for "g" identical spelling is attested for the
              > pronunciations /g/ and /d3/ at least, I'd use ungwe in all
              > instances.

              Sounds reasonable to me! After all, the different pronunciations of gh
              don't really conflict (as in the case of ch or th).

              I like best either of the following solutions for:

              ch = /k/; th = /t/; gh = /g/; ph

              (a) hwesta/quesse + stroke; **tinco + stroke; *unque; *formen

              (b) extended quesse; **extended tinco; *unque/**extended ungwe;
              *formen/**extended parma

              (I've written one star * before the forms that aren't attested but in
              other uses and two stars ** before forms that aren't attested at all)


              Dave 'Hísilómë' wrote:
              > In English with its rather "irregular" spelling, mostly for
              > historical reasons, there are a considerable number of cases of
              > different sounds spelled with the same letter(s), or the same
              > sound(s) spelled with different letters, both in the vowel and
              > the consonant sections. I think there will always be _some_
              > element of arbitrariness in how far one decides to reflect, or
              > not reflect, this in _orthographic_ spelling. This is certainly
              > the case in Tolkien's own English tengwar writing, which is by
              > no means a "one-to-one" transcription of the Roman letters
              > (otherwise, one might expect to see for example "gh" spelled as
              > ungwe + hyarmen, or "th" as tinco + hyarmen). Not to mention the
              > fact that on top of all this, Tolkien sometimes seems to simply
              > have changed his mind :), as evident from the now three attested
              > spellings for "ch" = k+h = /k/.

              Ah, that's a memorable statement!

              And here some ways how Tolkien represented English orthography:
              Different representations for different pronunciations of th, but only
              one representation for the different pronunciations of g. Alternation
              between both solutions in the case of s: Only one representation in
              the full writing of the King's Letters (DTS 45, 48, and 49), but
              different representations in DTS 5, 10, and maybe in DTS 13 (if the
              last letter on the third line from the bottom is really an esse).
              There's also the case of different representations in Roman
              orthography with identical pronunciation merged into only one
              representation in tengwar: The case of i/y and u/w as the second parts
              of diphthongs (but that's a difficult case, as I expose in the file
              general_use.txt I put in the files section).


              Benct Philip Jonsson wrote:
              > I will just mention the possibility of indicating the
              > pronunciation by tehtar, e.g. a w-tehta for the
              > /f/-pronunciation and a underbar for the /g/-pronunciation.

              I don't like these, since I'd misread them as followed by _w_ or as
              doubled letter respectively.


              ================================================

              FOREIGN SPELLINGS

              > One could think of other non-hard (non-/k/) "c's" that would
              > pose new challenges: e.g. in "czar" (/ts/ or /z/) or "Czech"
              > (/tS/), for example.
              > Phonetically speaking, one might use tinco + silme for /ts/ (and
              > as an orthographic spelling maybe extended tinco (??), as in the
              > Mandarin mode, but only if one wouldn't use this for "th" as in
              > "Thames", which I would still prefer--so maybe not; more on that
              > further down).
              > For /z/ maybe aaze, but that would again be a phonetic spelling,
              > I think, as would be tinco + harma for /tS/ in "Czech". Can't
              > really think of satisfying orthographic spellings for these.]

              These are foreign words with foreign spelling, that is, they're
              outside English orthography proper.


              Dave 'Hísilómë' wrote:
              > > I agree that hwesta is not usually used in English
              > > modes (though both Dan Smith and 'Mach' have assigned
              > > the theoretical value of /x/

              Danny Andriës replied:
              > And I would agree 'in theory', but since /x/ is not a modern
              > English phoneme, hwesta is available for other uses in English
              > modes. Why reserve the character for a sound that doesn't appear
              > in the language one is using?

              It's a foreign pronunciation tengwa that can be easily included into
              the English mode. But I think the use of hwesta is better described as
              "_ch_ that is not pronounced /tS/, as in _chorus, loch_ (whichever
              pronunciation of _loch_ is used)".

              Additionally, the representation of /x/ by hwesta is attested in the
              Sindarin tehtar mode (DTS 49), a mode that is identical with the
              English tehtar modes except for the representation of /j/.


              ================================================

              "ESPECIAL, EXPLANATIONS"

              I wrote:
              > > 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.

              Dave 'Hísilómë' replied:
              > [I checked all my dictonaries/encyclopaedias, including two
              > relatively old ones that use RP, but no. All I found was /S/.
              > Maybe they were not old enough (check in the library next time)
              > :).
              > Unfortunately, I couldn't find any instances in the phonemic
              > modes, either (Bombadil, So Luuthien, Treebeard Fragment).

              I think I've found the example that made me think so: It's an instance
              of the word "stature" in the "Túrin prose fragment", a Rúmilian script
              document published in VT 37 (and probably also in PE 13). It's written
              as _st-æt-y-ur_, whereas the Merrian-Webster online dictionary renders
              it as /stætS@r/ and my Langenscheidts (RP) dictionary as /stætS@/.
              However, this case is not entirely comparable with "explanations",
              "especial".

              However, I agree with Dave 'Hísilómë' that these cases aren't
              problematic, being spelled with tinco or silme nuquerna respectively.


              ================================================

              VERTICAL STROKE = HALLA?

              I wrote:
              > > (c) Quesse with vertical stroke (which might be analyzed as
              > > halla) below: Full writing mode of DTS 10.

              Dave 'Hísilómë' replied:
              > [Don't know. In my copy (in Letters, p. 132), it really looks
              > more like an English "comma" than a vertical stroke (which could
              > be seen as halla), although phonetically speaking such an
              > analysis would make sense, as indicator of "h", or aspiration.]

              You mean, orthographically speaking, not phonetically! :-) The
              interpretation of this tehta as a halla is the only explanation I can
              see (alternatively, we'd have to leave it unexplained).

              There's a very different use of this tehta where we may interprete it
              as a long carrier, in DTS 51.


              ================================================

              "PIDGEON, GORGEOUS"

              Dave 'Hísilómë' wrote:
              > Last not least, I'd like to ask you how you'd spell "pidgeon"
              > and "gorgeous" without ungwe with under dot, and "transcribing
              > the e's as normal vowels", as you say.
              > I'd do:
              > pidgeon: parma + ando with I-tehta on top + ungwe + E-tehta on
              > short carrier + nuumen with O-tehta on top.
              > gorgeous: ungwe + oore with O-tehta on top + ungwe + E-tehta on
              > short carrier + vala with O-tehta on top + silme.]]]

              This case again! :-) I think there are three possibilities for
              "pidgeon": e-tehta on carrier, then o-tehta on númen; e-tehta on
              (hypothetical) úre; ungwe with (hypothetical) dot below, o-tehta on
              númen. The first solution is the only one that doesn't require
              hypothetical spellings (even though I like best the third)!


              ---------------------------
              j. 'mach' wust
              http://machhezan.tripod.com
              ---------------------------
            • Melroch 'Aestan
              ... Unque obviously. ... Yes, and then if taste be add diacritics to indicate the different pronunciations. ... Exactly. My idea is that it often happens that
              Message 6 of 14 , Dec 23, 2004
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                Dave wrote:
                > >historical spelling, and if one is to use historical spelling
                > >when writing English in Tengwar, similar to the Roman spelling
                > >of English, then no diacritic is needed to distinguish different
                > >pronunciations of _gh_. This being said I will just mention
                > >the possibility of indicating the pronunciation by tehtar, e.g.
                > >a w-tehta for the /f/-pronunciation and a underbar for the
                > >/g/-pronunciation.
                >
                > [Hm. You are not very specific. The w-tehta/under-bar would go
                > with what tengwa? Ungwe? Or unque?

                Unque obviously.

                > And what would the
                > rationale be? And, more importantly, if you say that one sign
                > is enough for all three kinds of "gh", could one then (as I
                > mentioned in a previous mail) not simply use the one that's
                > clearly attested in Tolkien's writing, i.e. unque ("Hugh", DTS
                > 10) to cover all phonetically distinct incidences of "gh"?

                Yes, and then if taste be add diacritics to indicate the
                different pronunciations.

                > But let's not forget that Tolkien himself made distinctions
                > sometimes where strictly speaking they are not necessary in an
                > orthographical/historical spelling mode, such as using
                > separate tengwa for hard and soft "th"

                Exactly. My idea is that it often happens that an historical
                spelling gets disambiguated with the help of diacritics.

                > (two distinct sounds
                > that also exist in Sindarin, and thus were "already"
                > conveniently endowed with two separate tengwar).

                Hardly relevant since Tolkien probably used Tengwar to
                write English before he used them to write Sindarin!
                But he was obviously sensitive to the fact that these
                sounds are under-differentiated in English spelling.

                >
                > I gather you are not very fond of the "extended-stem"
                > solutions for aspirated consonants (maybe also for aesthetic
                > reasons?--tastes differ :)).

                I don't dislike extended stem tengwar at all, having used
                them on many occasions to indicate different distinctions,
                like aspiration, affricates, fortition; see e.g.
                <http://www.melroch.se/tengwar/finnish/fiteng.pdf>
                it is just that distinguishing extended unque from
                regular unque doesn't get you very far when you have to
                distinguish three different descendant pronunciations!


                --

                /BP 8^)>
                --
                Benct Philip Jonsson -- melroch at melroch dot se
                ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~__
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                / / / / / \ / /Melroch\ \_/ // / / // / / /
                / /___/ /_ / /\ \ / /'Aestan ~\_ // /__/ // /__/ /
                /_________//_/ \_\/ /Eowine __ / / \___/\_\\___/\_\
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                "A coincidence, as we say in Middle-Earth" (JRR Tolkien)
              • hisilome
                ... [Not in the case of hard/soft th , though, and in the case of ch only in one of three options, if we count that vertical under-bar (that is attested
                Message 7 of 14 , Dec 23, 2004
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                  --- In elfscript@yahoogroups.com, Melroch 'Aestan <melroch@m...>
                  wrote:
                  > > But let's not forget that Tolkien himself made distinctions
                  > > sometimes where strictly speaking they are not necessary in an
                  > > orthographical/historical spelling mode, such as using
                  > > separate tengwa for hard and soft "th"
                  >
                  > Exactly. My idea is that it often happens that an historical
                  > spelling gets disambiguated with the help of diacritics.

                  [Not in the case of hard/soft "th", though, and in the case of "ch"
                  only in one of three options, if we count that vertical under-bar
                  (that is attested only once AFAIK) as a diacritic sign.
                  So I don't know about "often". How many attested examples are there
                  in the orthographic modes? Hardly more than for usage of extended
                  stems (which would not fall in the category of diacritics I
                  presume?). Then again, we don't have many (or very long) samples to
                  go on.]

                  > > I gather you are not very fond of the "extended-stem"
                  > > solutions for aspirated consonants (maybe also for aesthetic
                  > > reasons?--tastes differ :)).
                  >
                  > I don't dislike extended stem tengwar at all, having used
                  > them on many occasions to indicate different distinctions,
                  > like aspiration, affricates, fortition; see e.g.
                  > <http://www.melroch.se/tengwar/finnish/fiteng.pdf>
                  > it is just that distinguishing extended unque from
                  > regular unque doesn't get you very far when you have to
                  > distinguish three different descendant pronunciations!
                  >
                  [That is of course a valid point!

                  Hmm. Since we have only the mute "gh" attested in Tolkien's writing,
                  it's hard to say how he would've spelled the other to kinds of "gh"
                  in tengwar. So I guess we each have to pick our favorite way of
                  expressing this, and you would probably prefer w-tehta (modified left-
                  curl) with unque for /f/, and under-bar with unque for /g/. I still
                  don't quite follow the rationale for this: is any similar usage of w-
                  tehta and under-bar attested anywhere?

                  I'd still either use unque for all three pronunciations of "gh",
                  which you also consider a valid possibility (and which I am beginning
                  to like more and more, since Tolkien seemingly didn't distinguish the
                  different sounds of "g" either in orthographic modes), or (forgive me
                  my stubbornness!) use unque for the mute "gh" (as attested) and the
                  extended-stem unque/ungwe for _both_ of the even rarer (if I'm not
                  mistaken) pronunciations as /f/ and /g/--them being rather rare, I
                  don't think a further distinction is absolutely necessary, and we
                  don't have to worry about coming up with a third different spelling.
                  This is of course also a bit arbitrary, but probably not more so than
                  using under-bar and w-tehta.

                  Anyway, this is a rather marginal problem, and no matter how you
                  spell "gh", the texts will certainly be integlligible to others in
                  context. So each to their aesthetic liking in this case, I'd say.

                  What about th = t+h? Would you use extended-stem tinco/thuule for
                  that?

                  BTW, I had a loook at your tengwar mode for Finnish. Pity I don't
                  know the language at all. I have heard it has an awfully complex
                  grammar with 16 (?) cases, but judging from your tengwar chart, it
                  would seem the phonology is equally intricate...? I gather you were
                  going for a phonetic mode there, or does Finnish orthography feature
                  that many letters/digraphs?

                  Maybe I'll give learning Finnish a skip in this lifetime :), though
                  it sounds beautiful and I enjoyed the "Kalevala" in translation.]

                  Hisilome
                • hisilome
                  ... wrote: [...] ... gh don t really conflict (as in the case of ch or th). ... in other uses and two stars ** before forms that aren t attested at all) [Of
                  Message 8 of 14 , Dec 24, 2004
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                    --- In elfscript@yahoogroups.com, "j_mach_wust" <machhezan@g...>
                    wrote:

                    [...]
                    > Dave 'Hísilómë' wrote:
                    > > Since for "g" identical spelling is attested for the
                    > > pronunciations /g/ and /d3/ at least, I'd use ungwe in all
                    > > instances.

                    > Sounds reasonable to me! After all, the different pronunciations of
                    gh don't really conflict (as in the case of ch or th).
                    >
                    > I like best either of the following solutions for:
                    >
                    > ch = /k/; th = /t/; gh = /g/; ph
                    >
                    > (a) hwesta/quesse + stroke; **tinco + stroke; *unque; *formen
                    >
                    > (b) extended quesse; **extended tinco; *unque/**extended ungwe;
                    > *formen/**extended parma
                    >
                    > (I've written one star * before the forms that aren't attested but
                    in other uses and two stars ** before forms that aren't attested at
                    all)

                    [Of which I still prefer (b), specifically the "version" that uses
                    extended stems for all four digraphs (and, as I've mentioned in a
                    previous mail, in the case of "gh" I'd spell both "gh" = /g/ and "gh"
                    = /f/ with extended-stem unque, while I'd use "plain" unque for
                    mute "gh", as attested in DTS 10. If you like, the extended stem sort
                    of indicates that here we are dealing with a "pronounced letter" :).

                    I like the consistency of using extended stems to indicate the "+h"
                    in all cases (though for "gh", using unque for all instances would
                    actually be more "orthographic").

                    In both scenarios, (a) and (b), we have to work with unattested
                    forms, so it's really also a matter of taste :).]


                    [...]
                    > There's also the case of different representations in Roman
                    > orthography with identical pronunciation merged into only one
                    > representation in tengwar: The case of i/y and u/w as the second
                    parts of diphthongs (but that's a difficult case, as I expose in the
                    file general_use.txt I put in the files section).

                    [Yes, I had trouble with those before and found your file very
                    helpful!]


                    > Benct Philip Jonsson wrote:
                    > > I will just mention the possibility of indicating the
                    > > pronunciation by tehtar, e.g. a w-tehta for the
                    > > /f/-pronunciation and a underbar for the /g/-pronunciation.
                    >
                    > I don't like these, since I'd misread them as followed by _w_ or as
                    > doubled letter respectively.

                    [Neither would I be fond of assigning new values to diacritic signs
                    that already have a clearly defined function and are used extensively
                    in that function, at least not without a compelling reason to do so.

                    In practice though, i.e. in a concrete context, the chance of
                    misinterpretation would probably be rather small.]


                    > ================================================
                    >
                    > FOREIGN SPELLINGS
                    >

                    > These [Czech and czar] are foreign words with foreign spelling,
                    that is, they're outside English orthography proper.

                    [That's one way to look at it...still a challenge, though :).]

                    [...]

                    [hwesta for /x/]
                    > It's a foreign pronunciation tengwa that can be easily included into
                    > the English mode. But I think the use of hwesta is better described
                    as "_ch_ that is not pronounced /tS/, as in _chorus, loch_ (whichever
                    > pronunciation of _loch_ is used)".

                    [That's a very useful description I think! The definition I've been
                    looking for.]

                    > Additionally, the representation of /x/ by hwesta is attested in the
                    > Sindarin tehtar mode (DTS 49), a mode that is identical with the
                    > English tehtar modes except for the representation of /j/.
                    >
                    > ================================================
                    >
                    > VERTICAL STROKE = HALLA?

                    [...]
                    >
                    > There's a very different use of this tehta where we may interprete
                    it as a long carrier, in DTS 51.

                    [Oh yes, Edwin Lowdham's Manuscripts! Amazing how much I still
                    haven't given a close enough look even in such a relatively small
                    corpus...]

                    >
                    > ================================================
                    >
                    > "PIDGEON, GORGEOUS"
                    >
                    > Dave 'Hísilómë' wrote:
                    > > Last not least, I'd like to ask you how you'd spell "pidgeon"
                    > > and "gorgeous" without ungwe with under dot, and "transcribing
                    > > the e's as normal vowels", as you say.
                    > > I'd do:
                    > > pidgeon: parma + ando with I-tehta on top + ungwe + E-tehta on
                    > > short carrier + nuumen with O-tehta on top.
                    > > gorgeous: ungwe + oore with O-tehta on top + ungwe + E-tehta on
                    > > short carrier + vala with O-tehta on top + silme.]]]
                    >
                    > This case again! :-) I think there are three possibilities for
                    > "pidgeon": e-tehta on carrier, then o-tehta on númen; e-tehta on
                    > (hypothetical) úre; ungwe with (hypothetical) dot below, o-tehta on
                    > númen. The first solution is the only one that doesn't require
                    > hypothetical spellings (even though I like best the third)!
                    >
                    [Hm. I like the ungwe with under-dot, too, but in this case, I'd
                    probably still go for the least "controversial" solution without
                    unattested spellings.

                    Well, this was very informative (also the parts I've snipped, nothing
                    to add to your exhaustive comments :)), thanks for once more taking
                    the time! And now, really, nothing more until after the holidays...]

                    Hísilómë
                  • Benct Philip Jonsson
                    ... Sorry, I didn t mean often in Tolkien s use of the Tengwar but often in the history of writing . Look e.g. at Hebrew and Arabic or Japanese kana. --
                    Message 9 of 14 , Dec 26, 2004
                    • 0 Attachment
                      hisilome wrote:
                      >
                      >>Exactly. My idea is that it often happens that an historical
                      >>spelling gets disambiguated with the help of diacritics.
                      >
                      >
                      > [Not in the case of hard/soft "th", though, and in the case of "ch"
                      > only in one of three options, if we count that vertical under-bar
                      > (that is attested only once AFAIK) as a diacritic sign.
                      > So I don't know about "often". How many attested examples are there
                      > in the orthographic modes? Hardly more than for usage of extended
                      > stems (which would not fall in the category of diacritics I
                      > presume?). Then again, we don't have many (or very long) samples to
                      > go on.]

                      Sorry, I didn't mean "often in Tolkien's use of the Tengwar"
                      but "often in the history of writing". Look e.g. at Hebrew
                      and Arabic or Japanese kana.

                      --

                      /BP 8^)>
                      --
                      Benct Philip Jonsson -- melroch at melroch dot se

                      Solitudinem faciunt pacem appellant!
                      (Tacitus)
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