Saturday, 11 December 2010

Tolkien Studies for 2011

Habt Acht! Wotan is returning soon. In 2011 he will be exploring several areas of Tolkien Scholarship and will try to be faithful to his readers!!!

just received the new copy of Parma Eldamberon 19 which I am going through. first evidence of Tolkien's first age Taliska language which this blog will seek to analyse. More to come!!


Quenya Phonology:
Comparative Tables
Outline of Phonetic Development
Outline of Phonology


Quenya phonology is a topic frequently discussed or alluded to by this group; and indeed a great deal is known about it, based on incidental statements made by Tolkien in various contexts and on inferences drawn from the evidence of attested examples of Quenya. So I hope it will be welcome news that Tolkien's own writings about this topic dating from the time of his composition of _The Lord of the Rings_ have now been published in _Parma Eldalamberon_ No. 19.

The "Outline of Phonology" is a comprehensive survey of all of the sounds and sound-combinations that occur in Quenya, including the divergences among the Vanyarin, Noldorin and Telerin dialects of the language, and variations over its recorded history such as those between _Parmaquesta_ or 'book-language' and _Tarquesta_ 'high-speech'. The sounds are all traced to their origins in Common Eldarin; and this forms the basis for the organization of the "Outline," which has sections on Consonants in Isolation, Initial Consonant Groups, Medial Combinations of Sounds, and Consonants Standing Finally, along with a section on Vowels that was left uncompleted. The text was composed around the time Tolkien began his revision of _The Silmarillion_ in 1951, and includes additions and emendations from certainly as late as 1959 and probably later; so it reflects the conception of Quenya that has come to be termed "LotR-Era" insofar as the writing is presumably intended to be consistent with Tolkien's published fiction.

The "Outline of Phonetic Development" is an earlier version of essentially the same survey, probably composed around the time of _The Etymologies_. In this text the part dealing with Vowels was completed, and it includes sub-sections on Changes Due to Accent and Stress, and Changes Produced in Hiatus.

The "Comparative Tables" are a series of charts laying out the regular correspondences among the sounds of the various languages Tolkien had invented by the late 1930s or conceived of as part of his history of the Elves, including Valarin, Quenya, Lindarin, Telerin, Noldorin, Ilkorin, Danian and Lemberin, as well as the Mannish language Taliskan. These are accompanied by Tolkien's notes on the general phonetic characteristics of the historical development of the languages, and on their phonological types in terms of the "real" languages on which


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