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Old 11-02-2008, 04:22 PM   #1
Enw
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"Proper Elvish"

Well, we know that all of LOTR is meant to be translated from Westron to English, in other words, Westron isn't English. Also, all the other languages we come across in LOTR are translated, for example Rohirric isn't "really" Old Englidh (the Anglo-Saxon language).

Basically, what I'm asking is whether Tolkien ever gave an example of "true" Elvish (any form), rather than a translation. Or any language other than Westron, for that matter.
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Old 11-02-2008, 04:37 PM   #2
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Not all the languages we come across in LotR are supposed to be translations. The Elvish languages are, wherever encountered, the 'real' Elvish languages. The only languages that are 'translations' are the real-world languages. So, English is Westron, Old English is Rohirric, and Old Norse is the language of northern Rhovannion; but Quenya is Quenya and Sindarin is Sindarin.
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Old 11-02-2008, 04:54 PM   #3
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Hmm, I don't think I started this thread quite how I wanted (I forgot the most the important part- asking whether Elvish is "real" Elvish).
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Originally Posted by Aiwendil View Post
Not all the languages we come across in LotR are supposed to be translations. The Elvish languages are, wherever encountered, the 'real' Elvish languages. The only languages that are 'translations' are the real-world languages. So, English is Westron, Old English is Rohirric, and Old Norse is the language of northern Rhovannion; but Quenya is Quenya and Sindarin is Sindarin.
Thank you, Aiwendil. So I assume the same reasoning applies to Khuzdul and other such invented languages?
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Old 11-02-2008, 07:35 PM   #4
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Yes, Dwarvish too, though the corpus is relatively limited. We have a few words of actual Westron as well, for example. Elvish, Westron and etc were not written with Roman characters obviously, but the transcriptions try to represent the sounds.

Sometimes the tengwar help illuminate a pronunciation, as Panthael written with Elvish characters in the King's Letter helps show that the pronunciation is pant-hael rather than including the -th- sound as in English thing for instance.
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