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The Telerin word "gâialâ"

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  • tchitrec
    In XII:363, Tolkien mentions a Telerin adjective _gâialâ_ (the source has macrons) equivalent in sense to the Quenya _aika_ fell, terrible, dire (XII:347
    Message 1 of 3 , Mar 11, 2003
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      In XII:363, Tolkien mentions a Telerin adjective _gâialâ_ (the source
      has macrons) equivalent in sense to the Quenya _aika_ "fell, terrible,
      dire" (XII:347 for the translation). The form of it is somewhat
      strange, since it preserves a long final vowel, shortened in other
      words of similar shape: on the same page (XII:363) we have T _arâta_
      from an implicitly Common Eldarin form _arâta_, and T _gâia_ from CE
      _*gâyâ_ "terror, great fear" (Tolkien's reconstruction), the very
      noun on which _gâialâ_ is based.

      True, it is not exactly the only Telerin word with a final long
      vowel: there is also _abá_ (XI:371) expressing prohibition or
      refusal. But that is a rather special word, and does not seem to be a
      normal, independent item: it is described as an exclamation, a
      particle, a prefix (XI:370). Its Quenya cognate _avá_ is quite
      peculiar too; Tolkien even mentions that it was stressed on the last
      syllable, in exception to the general rule for disyllabic words.

      It can also be observed that the Sindarin word _goeol_ given just
      after _gâialâ_, apparently meant to be the S cognate of the T word,
      points towards a Common Telerin prototype *gâyâlâ (my reconstruction)
      through an intermediate pre-Sindarin form *gôiôla (ô stands for a long
      open o).

      Seeing this, I wonder if _gâialâ_ is not a scribal mistake for
      *gâiâla, Tolkien inadvertantly putting a macron on the third rather
      than the second a? Or do we see here a specifically Telerin
      phenomenon, a kind of "switch in quantities" (does such a thing
      exist ?) ?

      Bertrand Bellet
    • Hans Georg Lundahl
      ... Whether a switch in quantities exists in the Tolkien langauges or not, it certainly does in classic Attic: Menélêos regularly becomes Menéleôs (the
      Message 2 of 3 , Mar 12, 2003
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        tchitrec <Tchitrec@...> wrote:

        > Seeing this, I wonder if _gâialâ_ is not a scribal mistake for
        > *gâiâla, Tolkien inadvertantly putting a macron on the third
        > rather than the second a? Or do we see here a specifically Telerin
        > phenomenon, a kind of "switch in quantities" (does such a thing
        > exist ?) ?
        >
        > Bertrand Bellet

        Whether a switch in quantities exists in the Tolkien langauges or not,
        it certainly does in classic Attic: Menélêos regularly becomes Menéleôs
        (the circumflex here replacing the long vowel letters and the accent
        being denoted by the acute - a form like Meneleôs could not originally
        be accented Menéleôs, but Menelêos could be accented Menélêos and
        kept its accent after the switch in quantity, the metathesis quantitatis).

        Hans Georg Lundahl

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      • laurifindil
        ... Probabaly it is a typo (not a scribal error of Tolkien) for _gâiala_. In such difficult matters, the typos are not a rare find, and are most unfortunate.
        Message 3 of 3 , Mar 13, 2003
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          --- In lambengolmor@yahoogroups.com, "tchitrec" <Tchitrec@a...> wrote:

          > I wonder if _gâialâ_ is not a scribal mistake for *gâiâla, Tolkien
          > inadvertantly putting a macron on the third rather than the second a?

          Probabaly it is a typo (not a scribal error of Tolkien) for _gâiala_.
          In such difficult matters, the typos are not a rare find, and are most
          unfortunate.

          [There certainly are typographical errors in the published texts, but in
          fact they are surprisingly few, considering the nature of the texts and
          the fact that the vast majority of the texts were typeset by publishers
          with no linguistic training to speak of. CFH]

          For example, _Peoples of Middle-earth_ has a few typos: as on p. 392
          _Nôwê_ but Index p. 470 _Nôwë_; which is most probably the correct
          spelling. Or is it? It is said to be "archaic" in form (ibid. p. 392).
          It could be a "Common Telerin" form with a long final vowel.

          Edouard Kloczko
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