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Q. _valka_ and _walka_

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  • Roman Rausch
    In PE16:83 the editors have some trouble interpreting the Oilima Markirya line _valka wilwarindon_ (OM2a) or _valkane wilwarindon_ (OM2) vague as a
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 28, 2007
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      In PE16:83 the editors have some trouble interpreting the Oilima
      Markirya line _valka wilwarindon_ (OM2a) or _valkane wilwarindon_
      (OM2) 'vague as a butterfly', since Q. _valka_ 'cruel, bitter' <
      VL.KL. (PE12:101) and later Q. _nwalka_ 'cruel'< NGWAL- (V:377) don't
      seem very fitting at the first glance.

      However, in PE17 we find (p. 154):

      GWAL- 'be stirred, excited, &c.', Q. _walya_ 'be excited (moved)',
      _walta_ 'to excite, rouse, stir up', _walda_ 'excited, wild', _walme_
      'excitement' and at last untranslated _walka_

      This last form is fairly exceptional, since _-ka_ is not a very common
      Quenya suffix and usually appears as an adjectival ending after
      diphthongs: _tiuka_ 'thick, fat' < TIW- (V:394), _faika_
      'contemptible, mean' < SPAY- (V:387), _fauka_ 'open-mouthed, thirsty,
      parched' < PHAU- (V:381), _lauka 'warm' < LAW- (V:368).
      In Sindarin the derivatives of GWAL died out due to coalescence with
      BAL 'have power' except for _balch_ 'fierce, ferocious', cognate of
      _walka_. Noldorin derives _balch_ 'cruel' from NGWAL- (V:377).

      'Excited, stirring butterfly' indeed suits the simile of a 'rapid and
      erratic motion of a butterfly that prevents it being distinctly
      perceived' (wherefore 'vague'). So maybe this root was already
      conceived at the time of OM2 (probably in a different incarnation,
      like *WAL or *WL.K) or at least the idea that 'fierceness, cruelty'
      derives from 'stirring, excitement', perhaps even by a blend with BAL-
      or Q. _val-_.


      Roman Rausch
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