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198Re: Past/perfect in Eldarin

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  • pa2rick
    Aug 9, 2002
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      Hans's post raises some interesting questions. I'd like to note
      that ultimately Tolkien's own terminology for Eldarin parts of
      speech must be given primacy of place over anything devised
      by those of us who study his languages. Regarding Hans's reference
      to "resultative" participles, for example, it is worth noting that
      Tolkien often explicity labels some forms as "past participles",
      e.g., _rákina_ "past participle of _rák-_ 'break'" (MC:223) or
      the "past participle form _vanwa_" (XI:366). Similarly, Tolkien
      also seems quite comfortable with the terms "past" and "perfect"
      with regard to the Quenya tense system, e.g., in the discussion
      of _auta-_ in _Quendi and Eldar_ (ibid.) This is not meant as a
      specific rebuttal or rejoinder to the points raised in Hans's post --
      but it is worth reiterating at the commencement of this thread
      that _Tolkien's_ own grammatical terminology as applied to
      Elvish is the only terminology that truly matters. Studying his use of
      terms such as "past participle", "past tense", "perfect tense"
      etc. undoubtedly has much to teach us.

      -- Patrick Wynne
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