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1076Re: Etymology of Gnomish plurals

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  • Roman Rausch
    Jan 22, 2009
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      >Had it been "_-th_ = Q _-t_ dual" instead, I would have understood
      >that those who said that Gn. _-th_ does not represent Q. _-r_,
      >believed that its origin was the same as Qenya dual _-t_
      >(both < _-tt@_).

      I think that's exactly the intended meaning, the correspondence of
      _th_ and _tt_ probably being so trivial for Tolkien that he doesn't
      explicitly mention it.

      >But what follows is also somewhat ambiguous: "_-tt@_ a dual ending =
      >_-nt@_". Both _-tt@_ and _-nt@_ seem to be old dual endings, but what is
      >their relation, and why is _-nt@_ introduced in the discussion?

      It might be a bit of an overinterpretation, but I propose the following:

      In Quenya, a dual ending _-t_ is seen, but it may come from _-tt@_
      with loss of the schwa just as well as from _*-t@_. The parallel
      existence of _-nt_ suggests that there were different modifications of
      a more simple suffix _*-t@_, one with reduplication of the consonant,
      another with nasalization.

      Note that there is a suggested alternative reading _-tta_, _-nta_; in
      either case both suffixes are most probably derived from the dual root
      ATA (PE12:33, beside WI/U).

      So basically the existence of _-nt_ supports _-tta/-tt@_ which on its
      turn might be the source of Goldogrin pl. _-th_. Or else Tolkien
      simply mentions it for the sake of completeness.

      The suffix _*-t@/*-ta_ seems to appear in _-wid_ (PE11:11). Note also
      the allative endings _-nta_, _-tta_ in EQG (PE14:46).

      Roman Rausch
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