- In message 180, Carl Hostetter wrote:
>In the post that Carl is responding to, I said that where Patrick Wynne in
>If what you say is true of the aorist interpretation, it is every bit as
>true of your past-tense interpretation.
his _VT_ analysis assumes an _i_ to be present, I see an exclamation mark.
I did not say this in support of a past-tense interpretation.
Assuming that there was a verb *_úcar-_, the regular past pl. would be
*_úcárer_ and the aorist pl. would be *_úcarir_. Tolkien did not write any
of those. He twice wrote _úcarer_, which looks like a plural noun. Perhaps
it is a plural noun?
Such an interpretation does not seem entirely out of the question. In
_apsenet tien i úcarer emmen_, the pronominal ending _-t_ (probably <
impersonal _ta_, VT43:20) might be determinative, not anaphoric, and refer
to the relative clause _i úcarer emmen_. In _tiruvantes_, _(n)te_ is used
If it is a determinative pronoun, _apsenet tien i úcarer emmen_ would mean
'forgive to-them that which [be] ill-deeds to us'. Of course there are
complications. The copula can be omitted in Quenya (VT42:33, VT43:30), so
that may not be much of a problem. But 'them' who? Perhaps there was a word
*_tie_ (VT43:21) that could be used to mean 'people', 'others', 'they'?
Does this seem plausible? I am sure there are many other possibilites.
However, I do not think it reasonable to support the hypothesis that there
is an aorist form present in _i úcarer emmen_ by turning the postcard
upside down and pointing out that Tolkien's marks could be interpreted as
- On 8/7/02 3:47 AM, "Fredrik" <gwaihir@...> wrote:
> However, I do not think it reasonable to support the hypothesis that thereThat would indeed be unreasonable. But if you mean to imply that that is how
> is an aorist form present in _i úcarer emmen_ by turning the postcard
> upside down and pointing out that Tolkien's marks could be interpreted as
> an _i_.
the interpretation of the marks Tolkien made against _úcarer_ was arrived
out, you are utterly mistaken. Tolkien very often did not dot his "i"s, if
writing with any haste or notationally (as here); and what you see as an
underposed dot can easily be seen as underlining for emphasis or even by way
of querying (another very common practice).
The fact remains that, semantically and syntactically, an aorist verb is by
far the expected form. The fact also remains that Tolkien did either remark
upon (if your reading of the mark is correct) or consider changing (if it is
an "i") the form. Together, these facts far more strongly suggest that
Tolkien at least considered changing _úcarer_ to *_úcarir_, than they do a
past-tense (or any other) interpretation.
I should note as a tangent that it is not an editor/analyst's obligation to
present every _possible_ interpretation or explanation. We often must select
and present only those that seem likeliest to us. Our obligation is only to
avoid misleading our readers into thinking certain what is only tentative.
Hence Pat's use of the word "suggests" when presenting the aorist
| Carl F. Hostetter Aelfwine@... http://www.elvish.org |
| ho bios brachys, he de techne makre. |
| Ars longa, vita brevis. |
| The lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne. |
| "I wish life was not so short," he thought. "Languages take |
| such a time, and so do all the things one wants to know about." |
- --- In lambengolmor@y..., Fredrik <gwaihir@s...> wrote in response
to Carl Hostetter's comment (re the form _úcarer_ 'do ill, trespass'
in At. V, VI) that "If what you say is true of the aorist interpretation,
it is every bit as true of your past-tense interpretation":
> In the post that Carl is responding to, I said that where PatrickLater in this same message, Fredrik wrote:
> Wynne in his _VT_ analysis assumes an _i_ to be present, I
> see an exclamation mark. I did not say this in support of a
> past-tense interpretation.
> However, I do not think it reasonable to support the hypothesisCertainly one of the most irritating aspects of online discourse
> that there is an aorist form present in _i úcarer emmen_ by
> turning the postcard upside down and pointing out that Tolkien's
> marks could be interpreted as an _i_.
is the tendency people have to restate someone's opinion in
a distorted form, then to argue against the distorted version
rather than against what was originally said. This is what Fredrik
is doing here.
I have never said, and do not believe, that the faint pencilled
markings above the _e_ of _úcarer_ represent the letter _i_.
This is what was stated regarding this form in VT: "Faint
pencilled markings over the _e_ suggest that Tolkien intended
to emend _úcarer_ > _úcarir_ (though the form remains _úcarer_
in At. VI)." (VT43:12)
Please note that the mark or marks in question are described
here only as "faint pencilled markings" -- precisely because what
they represent is unclear. Also note that it is only said that these
markings "suggest" Tolkien's _intent_ to emend _úcarer_ to
_úcarir_. Nowhere in these remarks is there an assertion
that an _i_ is explicitly present. The same thinking underlies
my comment in message #176 that "_úcarer_ in At. V was
apparently marked for correction > _úcarir_"
The reason that I have supposed these "markings" were
intended to indicate that _úcarer_ should be changed to
_úcarir_ is this -- _úcarer_ in and of itself appears to be
an anomalous form; if it is a pa.t., then we should expect
_úcárer_, and if it is aorist then we should expect _úcarir_.
Given these two possibilities, it is probably significant that
in emending At. V, Tolkien made markings of some sort
above the _e_ in this form -- "as if to draw attention to
it", as Fredrik himself stated in message #177. Why would
Tolkien draw attention to the _e_ in _úcarer_? The likeliest
explanation is that he felt it should be emended to the
expected aorist form _úcarir_.
As for the retention of _úcarer_ in At. VI, this might indicate
that the _e_ in both occurrences of this form was deliberate
rather than (as I have previously posited) an error. It may
be that in writing At. V Tolkien was considering changing
the aorist pl. ending to _-er_. When emending At. V he
was undecided on this point, and so marked the _e_ in
_úcarer_ "to draw attention to it", i.e. he was contemplating
changing this ending back to _-ir_. Then when writing At. VI
he decided to stick with the "new" aorist pl. ending _-er_.
If this was the case, the change was probably short-lived; cf.
_i karir quettar ómainen_ 'those who form words with voices'
(XI:391) in _Quendi and Eldar_.
To reiterate: I do _not_ think the markings over the _e_ are
themselves a letter _i_, upside-down or right-side up. The
mark or markings (whatever it or they may be) were meant
to call attention to the _e_, probably indicating that Tolkien
was uncertain about it and considering its emendation, in
which case the likeliest candidate for the emended form
would be _úcarir_, the normal aorist pl. form.
-- Patrick Wynne
- On Mittwoch, August 7, 2002, at 03:12 Uhr, pa2rick wrote [in mess. 189|:
> _úcarer_ in and of itself appears to be an anomalous form; if it is aAre you sure it would be _úcárer_ with two long vowels following each
> pa.t., then we should expect _úcárer_
[As I've already pointed out in this thread, the word _únótime_
(Galadriel's Lamaent) shows that there is no phonological prohibition
against two long vowels in adjoining syllables. Carl]
> 189 / Patrick : _úcarer_ in and of itself appears to be ananomalous form; if it is a pa.t., then we should expect _úcárer_
> 190 / David : Are you sure it would be _úcárer_ with two longvowels following each other ?
> 190 / Carl : As I've already pointed out in this thread, the word_únótime_ (Galadriel's Lamaent) shows that there is no phonological
prohibition against two long vowels in adjoining syllables.
I don't know wether _*úcárer_ would be possible or not ; I just
wonder if _únótime_ example is sufficient to validate _*úcárer_ ;
Indeed there are 4 syllables in _únótime_ so that the pronunciation
might be more evident than in _*úcárer_ (?)...