Elvish Lesson #4 Transcript
This week’s lesson in our series “How to Construct a Sindarin Sentence” covered derivation. Here’s the log, for those who couldn’t make it in!
*** Log file opened: 3/5/2003 7:01:55 PM
[jincey] welcome to lesson#4 of “how to write a Sindarin Sentance”
[jincey] elostrion will speak a bit, then take questions
[Elostrion] Tonight we are going to look over Derivation.
[Elostrion] Derivation refers to the adding to/altering of words by the use of suffixes or prefixes.
[Elostrion] As well as, the deduction of words from other languages.
[Elostrion] The latter can be quite confusing and complicated.
[Elostrion] Deducing a probable word is actually quite faulty as well.
[Elostrion] We can theorize all day long about what the word for “extrapolate” is, but Tolkien, very likely, would have had a different word.
[Elostrion] Let’s go over the easier section first.
[Elostrion] There are four categories that Mr. Derdzinski divides the 5 alteration suffixes/prefixes into.
[Elostrion] and Negative
[Elostrion] We add the suffix “-on”.
[Elostrion] This will make the noun mean “great ___”
[Elostrion] “siri-on” – “great river”
[Elostrion] We add the suffix “-eg”.
[Elostrion] Doing so will diminish the meaning.
[Elostrion] “nogoth-eg” – “dwarf-let”
[Elostrion] This will add a negative element.
[Elostrion] “ú-marth” – “ill-fate”
[Elostrion] There are two prefixes in this section…
[Elostrion] “pen-” and “al-“
[Elostrion] Both ‘reverse’ the meaning.
[Elostrion] “pen-adar” – “father-less”
[Elostrion] “al-firin” – “im-mortal”
[Elostrion] This covers all these.
[Elostrion] Someone asked me a question last lesson about the process Mr. Derdzinski went through to reconstruct “Navaer”
[Elostrion] These are his words:
[Elostrion] Quenya _namárië_ means ‘be in goodness’ and consists of _na-_ ‘be’ + _márie_
[Elostrion] ‘goodness’. My reconstruction is a hypothetical evolution of EC
[Elostrion] _*na-magariie_ to Sindarin form. The intervocalic _-m-_ becomes _-v-_ in
[Elostrion] Sindarin, the intervocalic _-g-_ vanishes, and long _-a-_ becomes affected
[Elostrion] by final _-iié_ and becomes a diphtong.
[Elostrion] And we have _*navaer_
[Elostrion] This represents a fairly simple example of reconstruction.
[Elostrion] Compound words are simple in comparison.
[Elostrion] If one wanted to deduce what a Quenya word would have changed to over the evolution into Sindarin…
[Elostrion] One would have to trace all the changes all the way back to Primitive Elvish and then follow the chain forward to Modern Sindarin.
[Elostrion] This can get extremely complicated.
[Elostrion] As you can well imagine.
[Elostrion] I don’t have any exampled for you now, because I have not had the need to attempt to do anything of this sort myself.
[Elostrion] I think I’m ready to take questions now.
[Elostrion] Are there any?
[Vardaer] i think i have some
[JulieOh] Can the 4 alterations be added to any word form (e.g., nouns and verbs both), or is it more restrictive? We’ve seen “u-” with verbs, but I’m not familiar with vocab enough to know of others.
[Not_Maedhros] What is the difference between pen- and al-?
[Elostrion] When “u-/ú-” is added to verbs it is being used as a completely different particle.
[JulieOh] ahhh, okay, so these are noun-modifications only, then?
[Elostrion] Even though it has somewhat the same effect, don’t think that this is true for all of the prefixes/suffixes I listed.
[Elostrion] Yes JulieOh
[JulieOh] thanks! OK, I’m done. Next. 🙂
[Vardaer] k, i do not get diminuitive
[Vardaer] do something else with that, please
[ILookLikeLuthien] okay, I have missed the lessons before, so I shall read them before I ask any questions about this one…but a few
[Elostrion] Adding the diminutive suffix simply diminishes the meaning.
[Elostrion] “Dwarf-let” is a bad example, something like “small-Dwarf”
[Vardaer] sort of like, maybe an insult, perhaps
[Elostrion] I suppose it could be.
[ILookLikeLuthien] I have a question that isn’t specific to this…but is it helpful at all to already be on the bilingual path when trying to learn Elvish?
[Elostrion] Oh absolutely!
[Vardaer] i wouldnt think so
[Not_Maedhros] What is the difference between pen- and al-?
[ILookLikeLuthien] Alright, because I am taking French currently also, I’m in my third year of that
[Elostrion] If one has some previous experience with language study, it is immensely helpful.
[Vardaer] i am just gettting this confused with german and some french
[ILookLikeLuthien] This should be different enough from French that I will be okay…I hope…
[Elostrion] “pen-” means “less”
[Elostrion] “al-” means “no/not”
[Not_Maedhros] pen is without, al isn’t?
[Elostrion] “pen-” = “without, lacking, less”
[ILookLikeLuthien] so that’s why al-firin is immortal…I see
[Not_Maedhros] I see.
[Bullmaiden] what’s the difference between “al-” and “u-“
[ILookLikeLuthien] Elostrion, I do appreciate this, and I will read the transcripts of the earlier lessons hopefully before I come to the next lesson also.
[Elostrion] Not much Bullmaiden
[Not_Maedhros] BTW, thanks for posting the Namárië/Navaer reconstruction.
[Elostrion] I am happy to hear that ILookLikeLuthien
[Elostrion] You’re welcome Not_Maedhros
[Thoronog] Why is ú- considered pejorative and al- considered negative?
[Elostrion] This is based on Mr. Derdzinski’s theory. I don’t know his exact reasons.
[ILookLikeLuthien] I think it would help to think of Pejorative as having a negative feel, and to think of Negative as meaning opposite…
[ILookLikeLuthien] Pejorative seems to have that tone of negativity, if you follow me.
[Elostrion] Exactly, negative “reverses” the meaning
[Thoronog] pejorative means “disparaging”, but ú- is just an opposite, isn’t it?
[Elostrion] You are absolutely right ILookLikeLuthien
[ILookLikeLuthien] I like it when I understand languages, they’re so fascinating.
[Elostrion] It is, but I think here it conotates more than just a “360”
[Vardaer] yes, it is
[ILookLikeLuthien] Elostrion, are there many tenses in Elvish, such as the Imperfect, subjunctive, conditional, et cetera?
[Elostrion] Remember that these were used in actual attested Tolkien text.
[Elostrion] Oh dear yes.
[Elostrion] Infinitive, Continuative Present, Aorist, Past, Irregular Past, Continuative Future, Simple Future, Subjunctive, etc.
[ILookLikeLuthien] Good. Because I seem to understand tenses fairly well, the only time that I really get behind in French is if I don’t put in the effort to memorize.
[JulieOh] is there any difference between u- and ú- ?
[Eruner] isn’t the existence of the aorist and the two future tenses debated?
[Elostrion] No, simply alternates of each other.
[ILookLikeLuthien] Aorist, I have never hears of that tenst…this should be fun.
[Elostrion] It is Eruner
[Elostrion] Aorist implies a timless truth
[Not_Maedhros] Sheep eat grass.
[Elostrion] It will be fun.
[JulieOh] are there any strict rules as far as when to use one over the other? (u- and ú-)
[ILookLikeLuthien] About how many lessons do you think there will be? Just as a sort of guess.
[Not_Maedhros] vs sheep are eating grass.
[ILookLikeLuthien] (sorry Julie)
[Elostrion] Not that I’ve come across JulieOh
[JulieOh] ok, thanks
[Not_Maedhros] The sheep are eating grass is the present tense. The sheep eat grass is aorist.
[ILookLikeLuthien] oh okay!
[Not_Maedhros] “The sheep eat grass” imples that the sheep eat grass as a continual habit.
[Eruner] in Quenya, the aorist is like a normal present tense while the present tense is like the present continuative
[Vardaer] i have neber heard of aorist before
[Elostrion] I hope to continue with a more “in-depth” series after we finish this beginner’s course. But, I suppose around 7/8.
[Eruner] aorist is a tense in Quenya and a suggested tense in Sindarin
[Vardaer] will you teach quenya, too
[Vardaer] i would like to learn that
[ILookLikeLuthien] thank you, because in French I have learned present, future, past, imperfect past, future using the verb to go (i know it’s French name, not its English), and conditional, and I am starting subjunctive now
[Eruner] download ardalambion’s course!
[Vardaer] ill go there
[Not_Maedhros] Helge K. Fauskanger = teh god.
[Eruner] thaks maedhros
[Elostrion] I actually prefer Sindarin, but if once we are done with Sindarin.
[ILookLikeLuthien] I would like Sindarin more…is that what is used in the films?
[Thoronog] Elostrion, you didn’t mentioned anything about these prefixes causing mutations
[Elostrion] That is all encompased within Consonant Mutation
[Elostrion] I will mention it then.
[ILookLikeLuthien] I am in such a good mood now that I’ve gotten to participate in at least one of these
[Eruner] when will we get to mutations?
[JulieOh] is that next week’s topic?
[Elostrion] In 3 weeks
[JulieOh] ok, thanks. Need to prepare. 😉
[Elostrion] We still have Conjugation!
[ILookLikeLuthien] I don’t know what mutations are necessarily…
[ILookLikeLuthien] conjugation is fun.
[ILookLikeLuthien] Are there many regular verbs?
[Elostrion] please visit:
[Eruner] mutations are certain changes that can happen to the first consonant of a word…they’re remarkably annoying
[Elostrion] I believe my consonant mutation charts are up
[Elostrion] I love them!
[Eruner] well, but they’re a pain to memorize
[Elostrion] They add to the theme of ridiculous complication.
[Eruner] oh yes, of course!
[ILookLikeLuthien] Alright, so if I go there…will it have many different things on it?
[Elostrion] I don’t understand?
[Eruner] what’s your opinion about the “irregular” past tense i.e. car > agor?
[ILookLikeLuthien] go to that website
[Not_Maedhros] Nixon dirksen nasahist, rebozo boogaloo…
[Elostrion>]Let’s cross that bridge when we come to it Eruner
[ILookLikeLuthien] will it have many different elvish topics, I mean
Not_Maedhros likes to cross bridges before he sees them.
Eruner lauges at Maedhros
[Elostrion] I got a new game today, so I’m going to go if no one has any objections.
[Eruner] thanks, elostrion
[Eruner] when will the transcript be up?
[Elostrion] It is absolutely my pleasure!
[JulieOh] go ahead, thanks as always, Elostrion!
[Not_Maedhros] What game?
[Vardaer] thanks elostrion
[jincey] thanks elostrion : )
[Eruner] hen hannon
[Not_Maedhros] Thanks for the lesson Elostrion.