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Re: [mythsoc] Re: Medieval studies

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  • John D Rateliff
    ... Or Indo-European. Of course. But I m willing to cut him a break on that point, since Bilbo himself often uses Elvish when he means Sindarin (e.g.
    Message 1 of 18 , Jul 9 7:23 PM
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      On Jul 9, 2007, at 12:58 PM, William Cloud Hicklin wrote:
      > Fair enough, but the column's reference to 'speaking'
      > or 'knowing' or 'knowing of' the language "Elvish" is
      > simply ignorance. One can't, even in theory, speak
      > "Elvish" any more than one could speak Romance, or
      > Finno-Ugric.

      Or Indo-European. Of course. But I'm willing to cut him a break on
      that point, since Bilbo himself often uses "Elvish" when he means
      Sindarin
      (e.g. "Translations from the Elvish" or "I thought you knew enough
      Elvish at least to know dun-adan: Man of the West, Numenorean").
      Finally getting a chance to read the article itself, I think it
      does a pretty good job of pointing out that today's scholars don't
      become medievalists by reading BEOWULF in college; they discover a
      love of medieval literature either through reading JRRT, or playing
      D&D, or (in the vast majority of cases) both.
      It's funny that as a gamer I see pieces like this every year
      where a reporter goes to regale people about the odd going-ons at
      GenCon; seeing the same treatment transferred to a scholarly
      conference is bemusing. Though as a purist I do scoff at the idea
      that finding a computer to play D&D Online isn't the same thing as
      finding a place to play D&D.
      Thanks to Wendell for posting the link.
      --JDR

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Merlin DeTardo
      ... himself often uses Elvish when he means Sindarin (e.g. Translations from the Elvish or I thought you knew enough Elvish at least to know dun-adan: Man
      Message 2 of 18 , Jul 9 10:38 PM
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        >>John D Rateliff <sacnoth@...> wrote:
        >>But I'm willing to cut him a break on that point, since Bilbo
        himself often uses "Elvish" when he means Sindarin
        (e.g. "Translations from the Elvish" or "I thought you knew enough
        Elvish at least to know dun-adan: Man of the West, Numenorean").

        Good point, but in the first instance, mightn't Bilbo have
        translated from works in both Sindarin and Quenya at Rivendell?


        >>I think it does a pretty good job of pointing out that today's
        scholars don't become medievalists by reading BEOWULF in college;
        they discover a love of medieval literature either through reading
        JRRT, or playing D&D, or (in the vast majority of cases) both.

        In further support of that point, Richard Scott Nokes and other
        medievalists responded to the article with additional comments on
        their introduction to medievalism by way of Tolkien, RPG, etc. at
        Nokes' blog:

        http://unlocked-wordhoard.blogspot.com/2007/07/sir-nokes-knight-of-
        faculty-lounge.html
      • William Cloud Hicklin
        ... speaking ... Elvish is ... theory, speak ... Romance, or ... to cut him a break on ... Elvish when he means ... thought you knew enough ... West,
        Message 3 of 18 , Jul 10 10:26 AM
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          --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, John D Rateliff
          <sacnoth@...> wrote:
          >
          > On Jul 9, 2007, at 12:58 PM, William Cloud
          Hicklin wrote:
          > > Fair enough, but the column's reference to
          'speaking'
          > > or 'knowing' or 'knowing of' the language
          "Elvish" is
          > > simply ignorance. One can't, even in
          theory,
          speak
          > > "Elvish" any more than one could speak
          Romance,
          or
          > > Finno-Ugric.
          >
          > Or Indo-European. Of course. But I'm willing
          to
          cut him a break on
          > that point, since Bilbo himself often uses
          "Elvish" when he means
          > Sindarin
          > (e.g. "Translations from the Elvish" or "I
          thought you knew enough
          > Elvish at least to know dun-adan: Man of the
          West, Numenorean").

          Ok, good point. Come to think of it, I don't
          believe the names "Sindarin" or "Quenya"
          actually appear anywhere in the narrative proper
          (unsurprisingly in the former case, since at the
          time it was still "Noldorin.")
        • Lynn Maudlin
          Oh, John, thank you so much - this is great (I must send it to my son, who will also love it); just really good facial expressions and word bubbles! Um,
          Message 4 of 18 , Jul 10 1:24 PM
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            Oh, John, thank you so much - this is great (I must send it to my son,
            who will also love it); just really good facial expressions and word
            bubbles! <grin>

            Um, are we living in a bizarre world where Jackson LotR fans the
            equivalent of Muslims reacting to "Danish" cartoons? The LotR novel
            gets lampooned ("Bored of the Rings") and that's minimally tolerable
            if not okay and sometimes actually embraced in a kind of dualism but
            to mock the movie causes great frothing? Surely not--

            -- Lynn --

            --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, John D Rateliff <sacnoth@...> wrote:
            >
            > Here's something very silly I happened to come across last week:
            > Peter Jackson's 'The Lord of the RIngs' as experienced by a bunch of
            > numskulls trying to play thorough the story as if it were a typical
            > D&D adventure.
            >
            > http://www.shamusyoung.com/twentysidedtale/?p=612
            >
            >
            > The story is still ongoing, after about a hundred and twenty
            > installments; they're currently messing around in the middle of the
            > Battle of the Pelennor Fields. The best episode of those I've seen so
            > far is the one covering Elrond's sudden appearance in Rohan, here
            > presented as a desperate attempt by the DM to fit a plot-hole caused
            > by narrator inattention:
            >
            > http://www.shamusyoung.com/twentysidedtale/?p=1148
            >
            > So, if you like D&D jokes, enjoy. If not, or if you don't like to
            > see the Jackson films mocked, better to give this a pass.
            >
            > --John R.
            >
          • Lynn Maudlin
            Remember: That which does not kill you was simply not permitted to do so for the purposes of the plot. bwahahahahahahahaha!
            Message 5 of 18 , Jul 10 1:37 PM
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              "Remember: That which does not kill you was simply not permitted to do
              so for the purposes of the plot."

              bwahahahahahahahaha!
            • Merlin DeTardo
              ... or Quenya actually appear anywhere in the narrative proper (unsurprisingly in the former case, since at the time it was still Noldorin. ) I never
              Message 6 of 18 , Jul 10 11:00 PM
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                >>---"William Cloud Hicklin" <solicitr@...> wrote:
                >>Come to think of it, I don't believe the names "Sindarin"
                or "Quenya" actually appear anywhere in the narrative proper
                (unsurprisingly in the former case, since at the time it was
                still "Noldorin.")


                I never noticed that (or didn't not notice those missing words,
                rather)! Your comment sent me on a search of _LotR_, using Scull
                and Hammond's (wonderful) index to the 2005 one-volume, paperback
                edition. No doubt I'm repeating what others have done before, but
                for fun or further comment, here are the appearances of "Quenya"
                or "Sindarin", by those or other names, in order of appearance;
                references are to Book, Chapter, page(s):

                ---Quenya---
                High-elven speech (I, iii, 81)
                Ancient Tongue (I, iii, 81)
                Ancient Speech (I, iii, 85)
                ancient tongue of the Elves beyond the Sea (II, viii, 377)
                high tongue of old (V, viii, 863)
                Valinorean (V, viii, 864)
                High-elven (App. A, I, ii, 1038; App. A, I, iii, 1039; App. F, I,
                1127; App. F, II, 1137)
                Quenya (App. D, 1107, 1110, 1111; App. E, I, 1113, 1114, 1115, 1116;
                App. E, II, 1118, 1120, 1121, 1122, 1123, 1126; App. F, I, 1127,
                1128, 1131)
                High-elven Quenya (App. E, 1113; App. F, I, 1128)
                Q. (App. E, 1113, 1114, 1115)
                High-elven tongue (App. F, I, 1131)

                ---Sindarin---
                Elvish (II, i, 233; II, iv, 307)
                Elvish tongue (II, iii, 283; App. A, III, 1074)
                elven-tongue of the West of Middle-earth in the Elder Days (II, iv,
                306)
                our woodland-tongue (II, vi, 339) [1]
                elven-tongue (II, vi, 342, 343; IV, iv, 659; App. F, I, 1129) [1]
                Elvish speech (III, viii, 555)
                noble tongue (V, viii, 864) [2]
                Sindarin (App. D, 1107, 1110, 1111; App. E, 1114, 1115, 1116, 1117;
                App. E, II, 1120, 1121, 1122, 1123, 1126; App. F, I, 1127, 1128,
                1131)
                S. (App. E, I, 1113, 1114, 1115)
                Grey-elven (App. E, II, 1123; App. F, I, 1127, 1128, 1130, 1132)

                Apologies for any omissions or errors. Also for the missing
                diacritical marks in these notes:

                [1] S&H apparently refer to the terms "our woodland-tongue"
                and "elven-tongue" in the chapter "Lothlorien" when they index the
                same pages under both "Sindarin" and "Silvan Elves, language of",
                presumably per the first note to Appendix F (p. 1127), which says
                that Frodo at first misunderstood the accented Sindarin speech of
                the Lorien elves to be a Silvan tongue. (Though perhaps that note
                also should be indexed under "Silvan Elves, language of"?)

                [2] S&H give "noble tongue" as a name for Quenya. The only
                appearance I found for "noble tongue" is in "The Houses of Healing",
                where the herb-master uses it to describe the name "athelas",
                contrasting it to the name "asea aranion" in the "Valinorean"
                language, which is Quenya. I have listed "noble tongue" under
                Sindarin on the assumption that "athelas" is therefore a Sindarin
                word...

                ...and after searching for "athelas" on the lambengolmor list, and
                reading this post and its successors:

                http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/lambengolmor/message/850

                I am a bit lost. So "athelas" is Sindarin, but with an unresolved
                etymology suggesting a strong element of Quenya (or Old English?) --
                is that right?
              • Cathy Akers-Jordan
                RTFL! Thank you, John! You are right: the Elrond bit is particularly funny. Cathy
                Message 7 of 18 , Jul 11 4:55 AM
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                  RTFL! Thank you, John! You are right: the Elrond bit is particularly
                  funny.

                  Cathy

                  --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, John D Rateliff <sacnoth@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Here's something very silly I happened to come across last week:
                  > Peter Jackson's 'The Lord of the RIngs' as experienced by a bunch of
                  > numskulls trying to play thorough the story as if it were a typical
                  > D&D adventure.
                  >
                  > http://www.shamusyoung.com/twentysidedtale/?p=612
                  >
                  >
                  > The story is still ongoing, after about a hundred and twenty
                  > installments; they're currently messing around in the middle of the
                  > Battle of the Pelennor Fields. The best episode of those I've seen so
                  > far is the one covering Elrond's sudden appearance in Rohan, here
                  > presented as a desperate attempt by the DM to fit a plot-hole caused
                  > by narrator inattention:
                  >
                  > http://www.shamusyoung.com/twentysidedtale/?p=1148
                  >
                  > So, if you like D&D jokes, enjoy. If not, or if you don't like to
                  > see the Jackson films mocked, better to give this a pass.
                  >
                  > --John R.
                  >
                • William Cloud Hicklin
                  ... with an unresolved ... (or Old English?) -- ... It s definitely Sindarin. I would suggest that the etymology isn t unresolved, either, although the note
                  Message 8 of 18 , Jul 11 8:09 PM
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                    --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Merlin
                    DeTardo" <emptyD@...> wrote:

                    >
                    > I am a bit lost. So "athelas" is Sindarin, but
                    with an unresolved
                    > etymology suggesting a strong element of Quenya
                    (or Old English?) --
                    > is that right?


                    It's definitely Sindarin. I would suggest that
                    the etymology isn't unresolved, either, although
                    the note in question hasn't been published (except
                    via Internet: my fault, but the wars were still in
                    the future at the time). The plant apparently was
                    not native to Middle-earth, but brought by the
                    Noldor; they called it in Quenya athea > asea (see
                    The Shibboleth of Feanor). In exile, the Sindarin
                    name was coined: regular cognate athe- compounded
                    with -las. My speculation is that Asea Aranion
                    was a specifically Numenorean term, the King being
                    associated with healing in that culture; the
                    translation would be something like 'kingsbalm.'

                    The link to Old English aethele was entirely my
                    guess- but it wouldn't be the only time OE found
                    its way into the Elvish tongues: see CT's note on
                    Orgel in Children of Hurin, or for that matter S.
                    orch (from OE orc: Tolkien expressly said this
                    word was 'Rohirric,' and it plainly comes from OE
                    orc-neas and not L. orcus.).
                  • William Cloud Hicklin
                    OMG, Dr John, that is *screamingly* funny! And I ve been that DM, too.
                    Message 9 of 18 , Jul 11 8:22 PM
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                      OMG, Dr John, that is *screamingly* funny! And I've
                      been that DM, too.
                    • Merlin DeTardo
                      ... unresolved, either, although the note in question... Thanks very much for that explanation. ... tongues: see CT s note on Orgel in Children of Hurin... I
                      Message 10 of 18 , Jul 15 8:21 AM
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                        >>"William Cloud Hicklin" <solicitr@...> wrote:

                        >>>---"Merlin DeTardo" <emptyD@> wrote:
                        >>>So "athelas" is Sindarin, but with an unresolved etymology ...?

                        >> It's definitely Sindarin. I would suggest that the etymology isn't
                        unresolved, either, although the note in question...

                        Thanks very much for that explanation.


                        >>...it wouldn't be the only time OE found its way into the Elvish
                        tongues: see CT's note on Orgel in Children of Hurin...

                        I can't find Orgel in the list of names at the back of _The Children
                        of Hurin_ -- which character is that?

                        Just kidding. Do you think Christopher Tolkien is right that it
                        was "too late" to change "Saeros" to "Orgol"?
                      • William Cloud Hicklin
                        ... right that it ... Well, look at it from the perspective of CRT s purpose in publishing CoH. He very openly intended it to serve as a bridge to The
                        Message 11 of 18 , Jul 15 12:45 PM
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                          --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Merlin
                          DeTardo" <emptyD@...> wrote:

                          >
                          > Just kidding. Do you think Christopher Tolkien is
                          right that it
                          > was "too late" to change "Saeros" to "Orgol"?
                          >

                          Well, look at it from the perspective of CRT's
                          purpose in publishing CoH. He very openly intended
                          it to serve as a bridge to The Silmarillion for
                          readers of The Lord of the Rings. Not direct to
                          HoME! Thus in this one case consistency overrode
                          what was generally his 'extreme scrupulosity' in not
                          altering the Narn papers at all beyond, in effect,
                          copy-editing. (He was fortunate in the fact that the
                          Narn papers, to all appearances, predate the 1958-60
                          writings which underly so many 'canonicity' debates).
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