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Evlish 101 Lesson 4 Transcript

July 30, 2003 at 9:26 am by Demosthenes  - 

<Gorlab> Say Annatar, what time do you have?
<jincey> it is about that time
<Annatar> It’s time
<Gorlab> Well then…
<Gorlab> Welcome to our fourth installment…
<Gorlab> of Elvish 101…
<jincey> : )
<Annatar> where we wil bee delving yet further into..
<elen_sila_lumennomentilievo> hello
<Gorlab> (hello, hello)
<elen_sila_lumennomentilievo> where am i?
<Annatar> nouns
<Gorlab> The mysteries of the Elvish Tongues…
<elen_sila_lumennomentilievo> cool
<Gorlab> specifically Nouns….
<Gorlab> And for a short review…
<Annatar> and/or
<Gorlab> and/or some pronouns…
<Gorlab> We have been over spelling conventions…
<elen_sila_lumennomentilievo> um
<Gorlab> We have covered pronunciation….
<Annatar> and the Quenya case system
<Gorlab> And now we are able to identify things via Nouns….
<athelas> What if this is your first time in here?
<Annatar> take notes
<Gorlab> and have gone over the main way to modify a Noun using case endings…
<jincey> we have the logs from previous lessons posted
<Gorlab> If this is your first time here, sit back and enjoy…
<athelas> ok thanks
<Gorlab> There are no life threatening tests here…
<elen_sila_lumennomentilievo> this is my first time in hwere
<elen_sila_lumennomentilievo> here
<Guest1> aww no life threatening?
<Annatar> just a little lenition and declension
<Gorlab> So now, we continue with Nouns.
<Gorlab> In Quenya,
<Gorlab> we learned that it is a language pieced together a bit like a jigsaw puzzle…
<Annatar> take a stem, and add some endings
<Gorlab> Tolkien, in his “Etymologies” (found in The Lost Road – Volume 5 of the History of Middle earth)
<Gorlab> has created lists of stems and roots…
<Gorlab> these stems and roots…
<Gorlab> are our base words…
<Annatar> to make new words and phrases
<Gorlab> which are modified with the use of Affixes…
<Gorlab> whether it’s prefixes, infixes, or suffixes….
<Gorlab> These endings can be combined with these bases stems and roots…
<Gorlab> to create different meanings…
<Gorlab> Quenya can have long compund word structures…
<Gorlab> That may appear daunting…
<jincey> are thes lists user friendly?
<Gorlab> but is really just a different way of organizing information…
<Gorlab> These lists can be diciphered,
<Gorlab> but that will most likely be a lesson unto itself..
<jincey> ok
<Gorlab> unless Annatar has anything to add?
<Annatar> Helge of Ardalambion fame has made using the charts easier
<Gorlab> with his indexes of the Etymologies…
<Gorlab> Also, the introduction of the Etymologies by Christopher Tolkien…
<Gorlab> “to” the Etymologies, rather
<Gorlab> allows one to understand the basic format with which Tolkien was working…
<Gorlab> as for nouns and Quenya…
<Gorlab> These are a bit different when you approach Sindarin…
<Annatar> Now I’d like to address the tricksy situation of Sindarin sound-change
<Annatar> In Quenya, as we discussed last week, you modify a noun by adding a beginning or ending
<Annatar> that’s the affix
<Gorlab> In English, we tend to do this…
<Gorlab> by adding, say, an “s” for plurals…
<Gorlab> Car.
<Gorlab> Cars.
<Annatar> In Sindarin, however, putting word in a new grammatical situation changes its pronunciation and spelling
<Annatar> The plural, that is, changing the “number” a noun has is a good example of this
<jincey> how many endings are there?
<Annatar> In Quenya, one usually adds a suffix such as “i” to make word plural
<Annatar> gorlab?
<Gorlab> In Quenya there are quite a few…
<Gorlab> But when one becomes used to what these affixes (beginnings, middles, and endings) represent…
<Gorlab> It is no different than having to “know” how you modify words in english….
<Aysel> can you suggest some favorite books on Elvis and writing too.?
<Aysel> Elvish!
<Annatar> if you know the word and the case, you just use a noun chart to determine the plural ending
<Aysel> sorry.
<Gorlab> So you modify the Sindarin Noun to make it plural by…..
<Annatar> MUTATION!
<Annatar> that’s right, mutation
<Gorlab> (The best Elvish source material is by far on the web…)
<Maeglin_Lomion> So palantir (sing.) & palantiri (pl.) is Quenya?
<Gorlab> Yes!
<Elessar_T> is a good page
<Annatar> essentially, it’s a case of changing the vowels, a mechanism called UMLAUT
<Gorlab> “Umlaut”…a Germanic word meaning literally “sound change”
<Annatar> UMLAUT means you modify the vowels a good example in English is goose-geese
<Annatar> or man-men
<Gorlab> We don’t say Gooses…
<Gorlab> We say Geese….
<Maeglin_Lomion> Mellon –> mellyn is Sindarin?
<Gorlab> We have mutated the “oo” into “ee”
<Annatar> a good example in Sindarin is Adan (man)–Edain (men)
<Catherine> though Adan and Edain sound similer…
<Annatar> Another good LOTR example would be Amon (hill) Emyn (hills)
<Annatar> Who knows a place name that uses Amon?
<Maeglin_Lomion> Amon Hen
<Annatar> Right
<Annatar> What about Emyn?
<Catherine> Emyn Muil?
<Gorlab> Yes.
<Annatar> Exactly!
<Annatar> Would you like to know how it works?
<Gorlab> Yes! Yes! Tell us!!!
<Maeglin_Lomion> Yes
<Catherine> sure
<Guest1> yup
<Annatar> The basic idea…
<Annatar> is that there was once, in the common ancester language to Quenya and Sindarin,
<Gorlab> (Common Eldarin)
<Annatar> the parctice of adding “I” tp the end of a word to make it plural,
<Annatar> as is still done in some of the cases in Quenya
<Catherine> L or I?
<Annatar> I, like “me”
<Elessar_T> I, or i if you prefer
<Catherine> ok, thanks
<Annatar> or “i”
<Annatar> that “i” is no longer there but we can hear its effects
<Annatar> the vowels change to “become more like i”
<Annatar> so A becomes AI, A becomes E, and O becomes Y
<Annatar> Gnerally, this effect is “stronger
<Annatar> sorry,
<Annatar> “Stronger”, in the final syllable, which is closer to the “ghost i”
<Annatar> Gorlab can direct you to a cool chart that lays all of that out, what was that URL?
<Gorlab> So vowel changes in root nouns display the plural…
<Gorlab> There is a chart on a site known as “Mellonath Daeron”
<Annatar> that’s it!
<Gorlab> And also some other Sindarin Mutation information on a site called “Gwaith-i-phedain”…
<Aysel> thank you so much! enjoyed this.
<Annatar> we have a link to the site on, and so does Ardalambion
<Gorlab> both of which can be reached through Helge Fauskanger’s “Ardalambion” site links
<Annatar> I do not wish tp monopolize this dicussion with Sindaring sound-change, but it’s helpful to understand it if you’re trying to learn it
<Gorlab> So the main difference in Quenya and Sindarin Noun structure….
<Maeglin_Lomion> What is the meaning of the -ath suffixed to Mellon?
<Annatar> is affixation vs. umlaut, to be geeky about it
<Annatar> good question Maeglin
<Gorlab> Is that Quenya organizes the information in discrete affixes, and meaningful sentences are put together like a jigsaw puzzle…
<Annatar> that is the Sindarin “Class Plural”
<Gorlab> While Sindarin uses mutation, yes…but not only for Noun Plurals…
<Maeglin_Lomion> Collective?
<Annatar> yes
<Maeglin_Lomion> Thank you.
<Gorlab> Consonants can mutate as well…
<Gorlab> for other parts of speech…
<Catherine> Just when I thought I had vowels down… lol
<Annatar> when one wants to refer to “all tree people” and not just a specific group to calss plural can be used
<Annatar> galadhrim
<Annatar> Haradrin
<Annatar> Pherrianath
<Annatar> periannath, haradrim, actually
<Gorlab> (tree-people, souh-people, halfling-folk)
<Gorlab> (er, south-people)
<Annatar> this is handy, when trying to devise an ordinary plural seems like a bit of a steep undertaking
<Folken-sama> Tolkien and trees?
<Annatar> The best analysis of theses changes is in the Ardalambion essay “Sindarin, the noble tongue”
<Annatar> Mellanath Daeron has the clearest chart laid out
<Gorlab> Now, not all examples of Sindarin (or Quenya) are “attested”
<Annatar> That is, written by Tolkien i that form or uaage
<Gorlab> Some of these systems of affixes and mutation have been carefully analyzed…
<Gorlab> discussed on the old Tolk-lang disscusion group…
<Annatar> and some are simplified for easy , casual use
<Gorlab> written about in the journals “Vinyar Tengwar” and “Parmaeldalamberon”
<Annatar> those are the serious ones
<Gorlab> and ultimately derived into a pattern..
<Gorlab> that makes the most sense…
<Gorlab> Those indeed, are the serious ones and new students should not be swayed by the seeming number of affixes or mutational forms…
<Annatar> how about those Quenya pronouns, hih?
<Gorlab> It IS possible to create simple, easy, and expressive sentences in both languages…
<Gorlab> Ah…to touch upon Quenya pronouns….
<Gorlab> In English, they appear as seperate words…
<Gorlab> “I”
<Gorlab> “You”
<Gorlab> “He”
<Annatar> me?
<Gorlab> “She”
<Annatar> her?
<Gorlab> “It”
<jincey> it
<jincey> them
<Gorlab> “They”
<Annatar> its………….
<Elessar_T> but in quenya…
<Annatar> get on with it
<Gorlab> But in Quenya…
<Elessar_T> they’re suffixes
<Gorlab> they appaer as suffixes..
<Annatar> Latin, spanish Russian and other speakers should be familiar with this scheme
<Gorlab> “-nye” is “You”, although it can be shortened to “n”
<Gorlab> and words that already end in “n”…
<Gorlab> absorb the “n” into itself.
<Elessar_T> Gorlab, sorry to correct you, but “-nye”/”-n” means “I”
<Annatar> yes, 2nd person uses lye
<Gorlab> pardon me, yes….
<Annatar> 1st sigular uses nye
<Annatar> the principle being that you just tack it on the end of the noun-stem as a suffix
<Gorlab> “he” in English is “-ro” in Quenya
<Annatar> verb-stem, rather,
<Gorlab> “she” is “-re”
<Maeglin_Lomion> What is absorbing the “n” into itself…does that mean the word is spelled the same whether it’s singular or plural? (Sorry to backtrack)
<Gorlab> and “they” are “-nte”
<Annatar> yes, it sinks almost without a trace
<Maeglin_Lomion> Thanks.
<Gorlab> It avoids double “n”
<Catherine> I thought -s was for he/she/it
<Gorlab> “-s” is for “it”
<jincey> could you please type out the examples?
<Gorlab> Sure,…
<Catherine> Ah, I see. thank you
<jincey> hoe this appears?
<jincey> how
<Gorlab> “na”, is Present tense Verb “to be”
<Gorlab> when we add the suffix “n”, (English “I”)….
<Gorlab> we get the word “nan”
<Annatar> to quote from Helge, Example: lendë “went”, lenden or lendenyë “I went”,
<Gorlab> Which means “I am”
<jincey> thanks : )
<Annatar> Bringing us dangerously close to the domain of “The Verb”
<Elessar_T> or to quote Namarië: “hiruvalye” = “thou shall find”
<Gorlab> if we use this formula for the other pronouns using “na”, (English “is”)
<Gorlab> We get:
<Elessar_T> no, that verb is to unknown
<Gorlab> “nalye” which is “thou art”
<Gorlab> “naro” which is “he is”
<Gorlab> “nare” which is “she is”
<Annatar> I didn’t unknow that 😉
<Gorlab> “nas” which is “it is”
<Elessar_T> but in english, present tense of to be has 3 forms
<Elessar_T> we can’t be sure wether Tolkien intended this to be the case in Quenya as well
<Annatar> But for these purposes we’re try to beliwve it is the case
<Annatar> so as to build a speakable construct
<Gorlab> I believe that about wraps it up…if anyone has any questions feel free to e-mail me at
<Annatar> however, it is not , as you observed, attested
<jincey> thanks gorlab and annatar : ))
<Gorlab> Thankyou so much for coming and showing interest – you people are truly wonderful!!
Gorlab [] has quit IRC (Quit: Leaving)
<jincey> what is next week?
<Maeglin_Lomion> Thank you and Annatar for being here for us.
<Guest1> yeah thanks
<Elessar_T> ok, this was interesting… but I better go to bed now
<Annatar> right now, we’re trying to get to “the Verb” so we can start making some Quenya sentences
<jincey> ok : )
<Lastar> kewl
<Elessar_T> Mara lome
<Maeglin_Lomion> Namárië
<Annatar> Namarie
<jincey> namarie : )

Posted in Old Special Reports on July 30, 2003 by

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