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849SV: [Lambengolmor] _Uvanwaith_ 'the Nomenlands'

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  • F. Strÿfffff6m
    Nov 13, 2005
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      Patrick Wynne, on the name _Uvanwaith_:

      > The only analysis of this name that I've found appears
      > in David Salo's _A Gateway to Sindarin_, in which he
      > glosses _Uvanwaith_ as 'wilderness of monsters', < _úan_
      > + _gwaith_ (pg. 394). [...] N./S. _gwaith_, in its lenited
      > form _-waith_, is a common final element in place-names,
      > in which it = '-land', and Tolkien's First Map for LotR
      > provides several Noldorin examples contemporary with
      > _Uvanwaith_: _Forodwaith_ 'Northerland', _Enedwaith_
      > 'Middlemarch', and _Haradwaith_ 'Sutherland' (VII:304–06).

      Further to the difficulties mentioned by Patrick, I
      would add that a name meaning literally *'monsterfolk'
      seems a bit strange. As far as I know the region was
      not inhabited by a people considered monstrous. It is
      clear that _gwaith_ refers primarily to a host, or
      people, and only by extension to the land inhabited by
      that people: cf. V:398 s.v. WEG-, V:382 s.v. PHOR-,
      and the description of the Lossoth as being 'a
      strange, unfriendly people, remnant of the Forodwaith'
      (LR:1041). The name _Forodwaith_ is an exact parallel
      to _Norfolk_ in referring to both people and land. (This
      development is quite normal; cf. _Éotheod_ [first
      appearing on Pauline Baynes' map of Middle-earth],
      meaning both 'horse-people' and 'the land of the
      horse-people', and [for a real-world example]
      _Svethiudh_, 'Sweden' on rune-stones.) _Enedwaith_ is
      glossed 'Middle-folk' (VT42:6). So, _-waith_ in a
      place-name would seem to indicate that the land was
      inhabited by somebody, or, in this case, by nobody:
      *'Nofolk'. But a no man's land is not necessarily a
      wilderness inhabited by monstrous people.

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