- Aug 19, 2002Carl F. Hostetter wrote [#207]:
> The sound I wanted to convey is more precisely called a "turned y" (it looksI agree that Eldarin _l_ was not as strongly palatalized as Italian
> like a "y" rotated by 180 degrees). It is there equated with Italian _gli_
> and Castillian _ll_ (which, if I understand those correctly, may be more
> strongly palatal than the Eldarin _l_ in palatal environment, but it's an
_gl(i)_ or Castillian _ll_.
As Tolkien wrote « [The /l/] was, however, to some degree 'palatalized'
between /e/, /i/ and a consonant, or finally after /e/, /i/. »
"To some degree" here seems to indicate that we simply deal with a
regular "light" [i.e. slightly palatalized] _l_ as heard in most
European languages, e.g. German, French etc.
English _l_ is markedly velarized, hence Tolkien's "allusion" to
spellings like _iol_, _eol_, no doubt having Old English spelling
conventions in mind, to indicate the velar character of English _l_ .
Some phoneticians would probably say that there is an ever-so-slight
velar off-glide between an palatal vowel and _l_ in English.
So, whoever has heard a French, German,, Spanish (regular) aut sim _l_
sound should have a good idea of what Eldarin _l_ was thought to sound
like in palatal surroundings.
[I agree with the point about English _l_ being velarized, and I should have
taken that into account. It's not demonstrable to me that there isn't an
attendant "glide" issue involved as well, a la the pure vowel vs. diphthong
distinction, as I outlined in my editorial addendum to Sébastien's post, but I
agree that that explanation is not the only possible one. Thanks for pointing
this out. Carl]