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Ónë tengwelë : Elvish and English sound symbolism and ethnocentrism in J.R.R Tolkien’s constructed languages Farrugia, Lindsay Michelle 2018

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   Ónë tengwelë: Elvish and English Sound Symbolism and Ethnocentrism in J.R.R Tolkien’s Constructed Languages by Lindsay Michelle Farrugia B.A., The University of British Columbia, 2014  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF  MASTER OF ARTS in The College of Graduate Studies (Interdisciplinary Studies)  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA (Okanagan) June 2018  © Lindsay Michelle Farrugia, 2018     		ii   The following individuals certify that they have read, and recommend to the College of Graduate Studies for acceptance, a thesis/dissertation entitled:   Ónë tengwelë: Elvish and English Sound Symbolism and Ethnocentrism in J.R.R Tolkien’s Constructed Languages ________________________________________________________________  Submitted by Lindsay Farrugia in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the degree of Master of Arts.    Dr. Michael Treschow, Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies Supervisor    Dr. Ramine Adl, Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies  Supervisory Committee Member  Dr. Christine Schreyer, Irving K. Barber School of Arts & Sciences Supervisory Committee Member    Dr. Dan Ryder, Irving K. Barber School of Arts & Sciences University Examiner          		iii  Abstract J.R.R. Tolkien is most famous for the fantasy series The Lord of the Rings, but long before he began writing the trilogy and its many counterparts, Tolkien constructed a number of languages for the inhabitants of Middle-earth. Phonosemanticism is the idea that phonemes carry meaning, irrespective of their lexical value. This thesis examines the constructed languages in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle Earth, and uses philological sources contemporary to Tolkien to describe the impact of phonosemantics and “phonetic fitness” in his languages. While the emotional or expressive quality of language is relevant to any author, for conlangers the phonosemantic affective quality is given even more attention. This thesis deals with the ethnocentrism present in language construction, and particularly how Tolkien’s ideas of phonetic fitness are influenced by his subjective perception of beauty in sound and language.    		iv  Lay Summary  Languages created for works of fiction offer unique opportunities to depict elements of culture, particularly in works of fantasy. The works of J.R.R. Tolkien, including the languages created for the imagined cultures of Middle-earth, have had a lasting impact on this genre. The sounds Tolkien chose to include in his languages have significance for how they have impacted subsequent constructed languages in the genre, but also for their relation to existing real languages. Sounds, even removed from their meaning on a word-level, carry sense. A cultural awareness of the sense of sounds can be explored through created languages. So too, an awareness on the part of language creators is required regarding how the sounds of a created language can reflect and represent world cultures. Tolkien’s languages provide an excellent model for this study, as they have maintained a large audience and offer insight into how fictional cultures represent natural ones.           		v  Table of Contents Abstract........................................................................................................................................ iii  Lay Summary …….......................................................................................................................iv  Table of Contents ......................................................................................................................... v  List of Tables List of Figures..............................................................................................................................vii Acknowledgements ....................................................................................................................viii Chapter 1: Introduction  1.1 Constructed Languages and World Building…………………….…………..…….….1 Chapter 2: Sound Symbolism and Phonosemantic Affect 2.1 Sound and Meaning………………………………………………………………….12 2.2 Affect and Language…………………………………………………………………18 Chapter 3: Ethnocentrism and Language Status 3.1 Language Ideologies and Status………………………………………...……………27 3.2 The Pleasure of Language: “O felix peccatum Babel!”……………………...………30 3.3 Tolkien’s “NatLang” Sources and the Languages of Middle Earth………………....34 3.4 Rohirric Language and People……………………………………………….………35 3.5 Elvish Languages…………………………………………………………….……....36    3.5.1 Sindarin……………………………………………………………….………….38    3.5.2 Quenya………………………………………………………………...…………45 3.6 Black Speech and Other Languages……………………………………………..…..49 3.7 Metalinguistics and Determinism…………………………………………...…...…..53 Chapter 4: Conclusion………………...…….………………………………………………….56 References ………………………………………………..……………………………………..60   		vi  List of Tables:   Table 1 Welsh Vowel IPA Chart……………………………………………...………… 39 Table 2 Sindarin Vowel IPA Chart……………………………………………………… 39 Table 3  Welsh Consonant IPA Chart…………………………………………..…………40 Table 4 Sindarin Consonant IPA Chart…………………………………………...………40 Table 5 Phonology of Sindarin…………………………………………………………...42 Table 6 Quenya Vowel IPA chart……………………………………………….………..47 Table 7 Finnish Vowel IPA chart…………………..…………………………………….48 Table 8 Quenya Consonant IPA chart……………..…………………………………….. 48 Table 9 Finnish Consonant IPA chart…………………………………………………….49 Table 10  List of Languages………………………………………………………………...51                 		vii  List of Figures:  Figure 1  The Elves……………………………………………………………….………..37                        		viii  Acknowledgements  This thesis project was made possible by the work of several people to whom much credit is due for its completion. First, I would like to thank my supervisor Michael Treschow, for his continued support of this project and his patience with me while writing it. His advice and guidance helped me in researching and writing this thesis, and I am very grateful for his time and encouragement.  I would also like to thank my other supervisory committee members, Christine Schreyer and Ramine Adl, both of whom offered key suggestions and insights that improved this thesis and my writing process. I would like to extend a further thanks for Christine for the chance to work on her production Conlanging, The Film, a project in which I learned first-hand about conlanging from several famous language creators, herself included.  I am grateful for the financial support I received that allowed me to complete this thesis. Specifically, the financial support of my family, and that of the University of British Columbia University Graduate Fellowship.  Finally, I would like to extend thanks to my friends and family for their emotional support during the process of writing this thesis. Without such an amazing group behind me, this project could never have happened.    		1  Chapter 1: Introduction  1.1 Constructed Languages and World Building In literature, particularly fantasy literature, representations of race reflect our fascination with identifying, classifying, and interacting with the cultural “other.” In the fantasy genre in particular, this is a popular trope as fantasy creators and audiences are able to share experiences of difference, disconnected from the familiar “natural” world. World-building in fantasy requires a fantasy world believably differentiated from our own experience. The inclusion of a constructed language provides a more immersive experience, which is more believably detached from our own. However, the worlds and cultures constructed in fantasy are never entirely separate from existing world cultures. The act of world-building is always informed by preexisting knowledge of natural world cultures and natural languages. Natural is the term I will use here to denote something that has evolved within a culture, as opposed to a language which has been artificially devised, though I do not wish to suggest that constructed languages are “unnatural.” Constructed languages, or conlangs, are languages that an author or linguist creates.  When a work of fantasy uses languages specifically constructed for that world, the way that characters speak to each other reveals a good deal about their culture. This, in turn, discloses information about underlying ideologies of the existing languages and cultures that have informed these fictional worlds (either directly or more loosely). The creators themselves know and speak natural languages and tend to follow conventions of natural language structures in their own creation processes. When a constructed language gains a large audience, the implications of embedded language ideologies becomes increasingly important. These languages are providing information about their respective cultures, but more importantly are making direct and indirect commentary on existing natural languages and cultures in the world. One of the 		2  earliest and most famous examples of a language constructed for a fictional context is in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings. His trilogy features a number of constructed languages, and even what is likely the first created language family (Peterson 10). In fact, Tolkien understood the importance of language to culture, even in his constructed context, and actually wrote to his American publishers that his work “is all of a piece, and fundamentally linguistic in inspiration” (qtd. in Zettersten 12). Tolkien’s constructed universe, its history, politics, and ecology, were all created after the languages, and so they serve as a very useful model for understanding how culture is inscribed in language. In order to inspect Tolkien’s constructed languages more closely, I will first review the scholarship that has so far been applied to conlangs in general, before discussing the intricacies of Tolkien’s own languages and their inspirations.  The practice of language construction has fascinated many people, but no one individual has had as much of an impact on the genre as J.R.R. Tolkien, the focus of this thesis. People choose to construct languages for many reasons, Michael Adams writes that, given how challenging creating a language can be, surely “no one would attempt to invent one unless driven by a serious purpose or aspiration” (2). Adams also suggests that the human desire to invent a language is perhaps inevitable. It is rare that a language can be considered “perfect,” so people would naturally assume they could create a better one to suit their needs, or to fill some gap in a natural language. In this sense, the way that languages are designed speaks to the creator’s understanding of language, and their ideas on the way they feel language operates or should operate. Adams feels that conlangs, “even more than natural languages,” should be noted for the way they “reflect and urge the cultures in which they are proposed, appreciated, and occasionally even used” (3). While Adams may be referring to natural cultures and the way they take up a constructed language as a means of expression, it is also true of the fictional culture for which a 		3  language is created. In Tolkien’s case, Middle-earth is home to a number of different cultures, each with their own background and linguistic history. Languages like the Elvish and Rohirric tongues that Tolkien carefully crafted for The Lord of the Rings have an impact on our understanding of the cultures of Middle-earth, but they are also meaningful for their inherent commentary on existing natural languages. Tolkien’s linguistic biases play a significant role in the way he writes about the languages themselves and the value he places on his different languages and the cultures that speak them. Tolkien’s model for language construction has inspired generations of conlangers, and as such recognizing and understanding his inherent linguistic biases has wide-reaching implications.  There are some special features to constructed languages that invite more scholarly attention than they have as yet received. A fundamental pillar of sociolinguistic theory is that social systems, including cultural norms and expectations, both influence language and are influenced by language. In terms of constructed languages, the implications for cultural transmission become more readily apparent as conlangs are consciously created, often specifically to represent particular aspects of a culture. Showcasing differences between languages is one way to construct the cultural other, as language is an immediate identifier of otherness. In works of fantasy, the level to which the language creator wishes to emphasize otherness can be examined through the linguistic choices they make. Ria Cheyne, a scholar of conlangs, suggests that created languages are vehicles for communicating about the beings who speak them. She states that  “alien utterances” convey meaning on multiple levels, and so do the languages and language systems bear information about their speakers. (396). The link between the signifier and signified is now intentional, unlike in ‘natural’ languages. The linguistic choices are deliberate and conscious on the part of the language creator. Additionally, constructed 		4  languages are significant for their ability to make the ideologies supported by distinct languages more apparent. Michael Adams suggests that the act of creating a language can “promote intersections of culture and ideology” (12). These ideologies can be linked to “language ideology” or “linguistic ideology;” terms that in linguistic anthropology describe the ideas and objectives held by a speaker or group of speakers regarding the role that language plays in the “social experiences of members as they contribute to the expression of the group” (Heath 53). It can also refer more broadly to the general culturally constructed ideas of “social and linguistic relationships” and how they relate to “moral and political interests” (Irvine 255). Many of Tolkien’s linguistic biases are reflected in the languages he creates. Adams points to Tolkien specifically when discussing how personal or biographical “motives” are keenly important for understanding conlangs and conlangers. Adams describes Tolkien’s use of language invention as a means of “spiritual renewal” during the First World War, and that language creation can be a personal and spiritual exercise (12).  Language creation as both a hobby and a field of study are becoming more and more popular. Some of the most notable popular works that look at the growing body of conlangs in popular media, like Arika Okrent’s 2009 In the Land of Invented Languages, Michael Adam’s From Elvish to Klingon published in 2011, and David J. Peterson’s The Art of Language Invention, published in 2015. The Art of Language Invention is a very popular book, perhaps because it is one of the only books yet published that details the steps involved in language creation. Peterson has gained notoriety as one of the few professional conlangers in the world, and is certainly at least the most prolific when it comes to conlangs featured on the big and small screen. Since cofounding the Language Creation Society in 2007, he has written languages for shows like Game of Thrones and The 100, as well as the film Thor 2: The Dark World (AOLI). 		5  Peterson’s book addresses the kinds of questions that conlangers must answer as they work to construct not only the language they are creating, but the imagined culture that uses it. In an essay about the Dothraki language for Game of Thrones, Petersen discusses why the show-runners decided to include a constructed language. By his account the creators had initially decided to have the actors just speak gibberish syllables that they would later subtitle in English. The producers decided to include a realistic constructed language to add verisimilitude, as the audience is more likely to buy into the world of the show if it seems authentic (The Languages of Ice and Fire). This is a trend that is contributing to the popularity of constructed languages in films and television in recent years, as audience members learn more about constructed languages they begin to expect more from the media they consume. This authenticity also has consequences: any constructed language will inevitably be influenced by the knowledge and culture of its creator. Peterson’s existing knowledge of languages, and his linguistic ideologies play into his language construction. As with any conlanger, the languages he creates inevitably reveal his own linguistic prejudices, as well as those of the show at large. While it easy to understand constructed languages are a body of largely intentional choices that reflect their creator’s conscious linguistic preferences and opinions, it is also important to note that many unconscious language ideologies can be at play as well. The show runners decided to use a constructed language over a non-English natural language (as is the case with several older sci-fi and fantasy shows). If Dothraki were represented by an existing non-English language, or even an accented or dialectical version of English, then this would likely offend viewers who speak that language, as this would relate their language to the Dothraki people, who we know have been shown as rapists and savages. The answer, according to Peterson, was to invent an entirely new language, so as not to offend anyone. He chose to use sounds for Dothraki that are present in 		6  Arabic, Georgian, and Inuvialuk (26), perhaps not considering the possibly offensive connotation in the use of these languages for what he considers to be “harsh” and “primitive” sounds. By phonetically linking his created languages to existing ones, Peterson associates the culture of his fictional regions to ones that exist, or have existed, in the physical world. I include this example not to point out Peterson’s work as particularly problematic in comparison to other constructed languages, but to suggest that even if a conlanger is mindful of the cultural implications of the linguistic choices they make for their conlangs, it can be difficult to avoid the unintentional commentary on or degrading of natural languages and cultures. In Britain at the time Tolkien was writing his languages, prescriptivist views were more prevalent in the study of linguistics. Linguistic prescription involves the valuing of certain languages (or uses of language) over others, on the basis that particular forms are “incorrect,” inefficient, or not aesthetically pleasing (Edwards 259). As Tolkien began to construct his languages almost forty years before any of his books were published (Okrent), the world he created for these languages to inhabit and the imagined cultures that speak them was deeply informed by the qualities of those languages. The aesthetic considerations Tolkien made in the process of creating his languages are hugely important, and in this paper I examine the way he constructed these languages, particularly the Elvish and Rohirric languages from The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings trilogy. I look at the phonosemantics, or the sound symbolism present in these languages and the importance that Tolkien placed on the “phonetic fitness” of sounds (A Secret Vice 199). The reason that such factors are important for conlangers to consider is that they create a system wherein not only do certain sounds have more value than others, but that in turn certain languages are deemed phonologically better than others. By incorporating sounds from certain natural languages into Middle-earth cultures, Tolkien 		7  creates a hierarchy of value amongst not only the cultures in the text, but those natural languages and cultures which influenced their construction. This happens through the association of the natural languages and cultures that are closely linguistically paralleled in Middle-earth. The most important example of this would be in the case of the Elvish languages, Sindarin and Quenya, which borrow sounds from Finnish, Latin, and Welsh. By associating particular natural languages with the “linguistically superior” cultures within the narrative, Tolkien places an implicit valuing of those natural cultures more broadly. In From Elvish to Klingon, Tolkien scholars E.S.C. Weiner, and Jeremy Marshall suggest that where the Orcs “brutalize their language,” Elves instead “cultivate theirs like a work of art” and are in “artistic control of their languages, actively improving them” (107). The natural languages whose sounds make up those of the “linguistically superior” elves are clearly being valued more highly here.  To expand on this point, each of the languages that are spoken in Middle-earth are assigned different cultural status. The oldest languages are the most respected, for instance Quenya, the High-Elven language, and are the closest examples in Tolkien’s writing to a “standard language” for his invented world. For “standard language,” I am looking here at the ideas of standardization that Mark Sebba describes in Contact Languages. Sebba regards the standardization of language as being originally linked to nation building and identity (7). The “standard” language is set up in opposition to the “non-standard” ones, where standard languages have more value and can be used in formal settings, for politics, economy or pedagogy. Using this understanding of “standard,” I believe that Quenya most closely resembles this type of language. The Elvish languages show the most evidence of development, both within the timeline of the fictional narrative and in Tolkien’s own lifetime and the amount of time dedicated to developing the languages. Quenya particularly embodies the characteristics of a standard 		8  language, as it is used in formal settings, has an orthography, is one of the oldest languages, with other related languages and ones that descend from it. There is no official, complete, and standardized form of any of Tolkien’s languages. That said, some of his languages are much more developed than others, more evidence of their grammars exists, and a good deal more vocabulary has been uncovered. In the appendix on names at the end of The Book of Lost Tales, Christopher Tolkien wrote that “It is immediately obvious that an already extremely sophisticated and phonetically intricate historical structure lies behind the languages,” referring primarily to the Elven languages. This complexity, Christopher felt, allowed the language to seem the most realistic, and Quenya in particular had achieved a “high degree of grammatical sophistication and organization” (247). The time and care that Tolkien put into developing the Elven languages shows the level of respect and esteem those languages command, which translates into the context of the narrative.  Constructed languages can be categorized as either “a posteriori” languages, which are based on one or more existing language, and “a priori” languages, which are created without the intent to emulate any existing language. While it is impossible to create a language that is uninfluenced by any natural language, a posteriori languages are intentionally representative of a natural language or combination of natural languages, whereas with a priori languages these connections may be less intentional or immediately apparent. Most of Tolkien’s languages fall somewhere in between these two ends of the spectrum. While they are not directly emulating any particular natlangs (or natural languages) in grammar or orthography, they were designed with phonetic inspiration from languages which Tolkien held in high esteem. He believed strongly in the power of words, and his Elvish languages were designed to be powerful in their beauty, specifically the phonetic appeal of lilting sound. In the Elvish language Sindarin, the pattern of 		9  stressed and unstressed syllables has a recurring pattern. David Salo, the linguist who worked on The Lord of the Rings films, has published a book about Sindarin grammar and phonology. Salo demonstrates that in Sindarin words with two syllables, the stress falls on the first. In words with three syllables or more, the stress would fall on the penultimate or antepenultimate (third from the end) syllable. This is comparable to English, though of course English includes many variations. These choices were made intentionally. As noted above, Tolkien strongly believed in the power of words, and he wrote the Elvish languages to be appealing to his (often English) readers. In his essay on language invention “A Secret Vice,” Tolkien remarks that languages are not complete without an audience, and this helps us understand why his languages having an affective quality for readers was important to him. Tolkien intentionally constructed the “musicality” of Quenya, which uses both Latin and Finnish elements, to produce a language that sounds widely aesthetically pleasing (Weiner and Marshall 77). The sounds he chose to use are ones that English speakers, and likely speakers of Romance languages, would view as being particularly pleasing to the ear and just foreign enough to be mysterious without being jarring. Tolkien did not choose sounds of the language only to contrast one another, but they were also selected with considerations as to what context they would be used in within his imagined realm. Elvish is the high-prestige language of art and literature and history. The Elves are shown to be “in artistic control of their language, actively improving them,” (Weiner and Marshall 107) unlike some of the other cultures presented in the novels.   I pointed out previously that, despite their long history of use, the process of constructing languages has only recently become a topic of academic study. In the case of Tolkien’s languages, there has actually been a long-standing fascination with his language invention from a more scientific point of view. There is an entire journal, the Vinyar Tengwar, dedicated to 		10  disseminating scholarly study regarding “Tolkienian linguistics,” as well as The Elvish Linguistic Fellowship, charmingly abbreviated as ELF, who maintain their own academic journal online. As well, some of the books discussing Tolkien’s languages have significance for this study, as they provide helpful information on the grammar or etymology of Tolkien’s languages. Ruth S. Noel’s 1980 book The Languages of Tolkien’s Middle-Earth was one of the earliest published works discussing the languages, and it provides information on fourteen of the languages of Middle-earth. Unfortunately, despite its popularity, it was published before History of Middle Earth, and is therefore missing important information about Quenya in particular. Another author whose writing on Tolkien is particularly significant here is Arne Zettersten, a close colleague of Tolkien and former professor of English at the University of Copenhagen. His works, including J.R.R. Tolkien's Double Worlds and Creative Process: Language and Life, offers a close look at Tolkien’s preoccupation with languages, including notes from his personal correspondence. For my examination of the phonosemantics, or the sound-symbolism of the conlangs, Ross Smith has a number of books which address how phonetic elements of Tolkien’s languages are chosen for affect as well as to reflect their semantic meaning. The “phonetic fitness” of Tolkien’s conlangs is discussed in Smith’s Fitting Sense to Sound: Linguistic Aesthetics and Phonosemantics in the Work of J.R.R. Tolkien and Inside Language: Linguistic and Aesthetic Theory in Tolkien. These texts inform my own inferences about Tolkien’s languages, including the emotional or expressive elements of the language (the phonosemantic affect) as it operates at the sound-meaning level in the Elvish and Rohirric languages. These works also contribute to my discussion of the ethnocentrism present in language construction, and how Tolkien’s ideas of phonetic fitness are influenced by his subjective perception of beauty in sound and language. 		11  In the next chapter, I discuss ideas of sound symbolism specifically, as well as the role of affect in language. Chapter three will discuss language ideologies, and the natural language sources for Tolkien’s constructed languages. I look at how the Elvish languages in particular were influenced by existing European languages, and the eurocentrism this reflects in the apparent cultural hierarchy of Middle-earth. 		12  Chapter 2: Sound Symbolism and Phonosemantic Affect  2.1 Sound and Meaning:  Sound symbolism refers to the connection between a particular sound and its meaning. This term is traditionally used when a phoneme (or individual sound-unit) is understood to directly express something, as opposed to its general linguistic function as a “non-meaning-bearing unit” (Nuckolls 228). Throughout the twentieth century, the question of the relationship between sound and meaning in language was a popular topic. Ferdinand de Saussure was an early voice in this discussion, strongly asserting the sound of a word (or linguistic sign) has no bearing on how it is used or what it means (the referent). Saussure privileges speech over writing, viewing writing as merely a “derivative” of speech. He regarded the spoken word as the proper expression of the act of “parole,” the willful and individual act of an utterance. Most importantly, he repeatedly makes the point that the linguistic sign is arbitrary. Saussure describes the linguistic sign as uniting “a concept and a sound-image” (66). The sound-image is not just used here to refer to the audible sound, but also the “psychological imprint” of that sound (66). Ross Smith says of Saussure that “only by severing phonetic relations between spoken words and the notions or objects they referred to could he isolate the inert elements he needed to create a “‘scientific’ system, or structure” (2). Smith adds that this school of thought was later promoted by the Chomskyan school, where its impact on the wider field of linguistics grew.  While Tolkien was writing, the influence of Saussure’s opinion that the sign is arbitrary was fundamental to the field of structural linguistics. Ross Smith uses Saussure and Chomsky to highlight the differences between “establishment” linguistics and Tolkien’s own perspectives. While I cannot speak to how familiar Tolkien himself would have been with Saussure (if, indeed, at all), it is still important to note that his work was not in-line with contemporary theories. Smith 		13  also points out that there were other theorists proposing oppositional ideas about the relationship between sound and meaning. Otto Jesperson, a Danish Linguist, was a proponent of phonosemanticism, the idea that phonemes (sounds) carry meaning. He believed that sound symbolism influenced the way language formed, but also that it operated on an ongoing basis to make words more applicable or appropriate for the referent. In 1922, he challenged Saussure, asking if there was “really much more logic in the opposite extreme which denies any kind of sound symbolism (apart from the small class of evident echoisms and ‘onomatopoeia’) and sees in our words only a collection of accidental and irrational associations of sound and meaning?” (397). Ross Smith makes some remarks comparing Tolkien and Jespersen in his book Inside Language: Linguistic and Aesthetic Theory in Tolkien, but critic and Tolkien scholar Jason Fisher opposes the “casual” way that Smith suggests that we have no way of knowing just how familiar Tolkien would have been with Jespersen’s work. He argues that “we do, in fact, have a pretty good sense of this” referring to Tolkien’s familiarity with Jespersen, pointing out that he “refers explicitly to Jespersen’s work three times in his essays for The Year’s Work in English Studies” and that Tolkien has read Jespersen’s book in the original Danish version. Fisher suggests that from the numerous references in “Philology: General Works” essays from 1923-1925 that Tolkien had a “considerable engagement” with Jespersen’s work. I believe then that it is fair to say Tolkien would have also a passing familiarity with Saussure’s views, if only through Jespersen’s particular responses to him. Jespersen felt that sounds could be symbolic of a sense even if it was not consistent across a language; a sound might mark some particular symbolic meaning in some instances in English, for example, but not in all cases that the sound appears. This is also true of signification across language. Jesperson wrote that it would be “absurd to maintain that all words at all times in all languages had a signification corresponding 		14  exactly to their sound, each having a definite meaning once and for all” (396). He nevertheless felt that sound symbolism was significant, adding that there are words which we “feel instinctively to be adequate to express the ideas they stand for” (398). Jesperson is also well known for having published an auxiliary language called Novial, a type of conlang similar to Esperanto, and intended for use as a tool for universal communication. In 1929, linguist Edward Sapir also felt there was an intrinsic link between sound and sense, and developed experiments to test this idea. Among these experiments was one designed to find if connotations of size were encoded into sound. Sapir asked subjects to identify if “mil” or “mal” would refer to a large or small table. The vast majority of Sapir’s subjects responded that “mil” would refer to the smaller table.1 Other theorists who felt strongly about a connection between sound and meaning include German humanist Wilhelm von Humboldt. Humboldt was an early adopter of the theory of sound symbolism, writing about it in 1836. He asserted that there was a connection between a word’s sound and its meaning (Allott 1). Leanne Hinton notes that Humboldt referred to our understanding of sound symbolism to be “ein schlüpfriges pfad” or a slippery slope (245), but that Humboldt also importantly distinguished between the idea of sound symbolism and onomatopoeia in his characterization of the “three relationships between sound and meaning” (Allott 2). He separates the purely acoustic onomatopoeia from the phonosemantic imitation of a “semantic ‘essence’” in sound symbolism. Allott describes Humbolt’s impression that a kind of natural selection takes place along the path of language evolution. He states “language selected sounds which partly independently and partly in comparison with others produce an impression which to the ear is similar to that which the object makes upon the mind” (2).                                                  1 In the century since, this experiment has been reproduced several times with much more mixed results (Allott 12)  		15  Sound symbolism has gained popularity as a concept in the 21st century, though the magnitude to which it operates is difficult to establish. Most studies of sound-symbolism have focused on how it functions within an individual language, rather than looking at any potentially universal connections between a sound and its expressive meaning. In 1999, anthropological linguist Janis B. Nuckolls suggested that it was time to “build a bridge between the vigorously thriving conceptions of sound symbolism nurtured by anthropologists and the careful, parsimonious concessions made by linguists admitting to its existence” (228). That said, at the time that Tolkien was writing, while sound symbolism had the supporters I have outlined, it could still be understood as a counter-tradition. Tolkien created his language and wrote The Lord of the Rings trilogy while this conversation was ongoing. Though he was not a theoretical linguist, his writing from the time demonstrates at least a general awareness of the wider discussion of linguistic theory and the growing trend of sound symbolism, particularly in poetics (Smith 4). He frequently wrote about linguistic aesthetics, an idea which ties closely to phonosemantics. Tolkien used the term linguistic aesthetics particularly to address the relationship between the sound of a word, its meaning and the emotional response it can evoke (Smith 1). Smith writes that Tolkien’s preoccupation with sound symbolism and his frequent discussion of it was related to his concern that his ideas about it would not be taken seriously (2), and might even be mocked by those who still held to that Saussurean tradition. Still, he felt strongly about the “phonetic fitness” of words, and wrote in Monsters and the Critics that: The communication factor has been very powerful in directing the development of language; but the more individual and personal factor—pleasure in articulate sound, and in the symbolic use of it, independent of 		16  communication though constantly in fact entangled with it – must not be forgotten for a moment. (208)  This was a primary concern for Tolkien, and in “A Secret Vice” he mentions that while constructing his various languages, he must deal with the “fitting of notion to oral symbol” (206). This process, unique to conlangers, makes quite clear the significance of the specific word, the choice of specific character and sound combinations that go into creating words in a new language. We can use constructed languages to identify the importance of sound-symbolism in this way. Klingon, for example, has sounds that were deliberately chosen to sound as unfamiliar and alien as possible, while for the film Avatar, Paul Frommer was tasked with choosing sounds for the Na’vi language that audiences around the world would find “pleasant” (Milani 2009).  Tolkien writes that he is “personally more interested perhaps in word-form in itself, and in word-form in relation to meaning (so-called phonetic fitness) than in any other department” (Secret Vice, 211). For Tolkien, the sounds of his languages are directly associated with the pleasure that could be found in both the writing and the reading of them, and he suggests it is “the contemplation of the relation between sound and notion which is the main source of pleasure” (Secret Vice, 206). Ross Smith points out names in Tolkien’s work as being a key area where the impact of phonosemantics can be witnessed. This applies both to the names for places and for people in the texts. Smith highlights “Withywindle” as an example where the sound-image created calls to mind a “slow, winding, magical river” and “Tom Bombadil” which calls to mind a “jolly, rumbustious” person (57). While we also have the physical or character descriptions to go on to create an image of what these names are designating, it is clear that our associations are not made after the fact. Smith expands on this, asking if the name Tom 		17  Bombadil could have been used for a different character. It would be absurd, he says, if the grim and severe Lord Denethor was given that name, due to the phonetic unfitness (57).   This understanding of phonetic fitness naturally leads us to question what it is exactly that causes this “linguistic pleasure.” That is to say, what are the factors that influence the phonetic fitness of a word and its sound, and how can we apply these considerations to Tolkien’s language creation process. Carl Phelpstead reflects on his own linguistic preferences, as a way to understand how we might read Tolkien’s linguistic choices. In Tolkien and Wales, Phelpstead describes his experience of learning languages in school; his own distaste for the “nasalized vowels of French” and appreciation of Danish glottal stops or the throaty Dutch initial consonants (21). He thoughtfully points out that while he can rationalize that these preferences come from his enjoyment of “phonological contrast” or plosive and fricative consonants,2 that ultimately this is not a productive examination. He feels that kind of explanation “only moves the phenomenon requiring explanation to another level” as we now must question why those phonological features might be appealing (22). Phelpstead convincingly argues that it is not simply a matter of personal taste. There are a number of cultural factors playing in to what one might find phonologically pleasing. He denies that an objective argument could be made that particular languages are inherently more pleasing or beautiful than others (22). He references Tolkien’s lecture “English and Welsh,” which was the first of Oxford’s O’Donnell Lecture Series, delivered in October of 1955, one day after the release of The Return of the King (Hemmi 149). In the opening of that lecture, Tolkien describes himself as a “philologist in the Anglo-Saxon and Germanic field,” and one who “has always felt the attraction of the ancient history and pre-history of these islands, and most particularly the attraction of the Welsh language in                                                 2 In English plosive sounds are in letters p, t, k; b, d, g, where air flow is interrupted to create the sound. Fricatives are sounds where air flow is constricted, like f, s, v or z 		18  itself” (MC 162). He further outlines his love of the language, stating that “Welsh is of this soil, this island, the senior language of the men of Britain; and Welsh is beautiful” (189). While he does clarify that this is informed primarily by his own personal and subjective interpretation, he undoes this claim when he asserts that there are common experiences of linguistic pleasure shared by all English speakers. He believes that most English speakers would find the phrase “cellar door” to be beautiful, “especially if dissociated from its sense (and from its spelling). More beautiful than, say, sky, and far more beautiful than beautiful” (MC 190-191). Ross Smith offers an important criticism of this opinion, questioning if Tolkien was imagining the pronunciation of the words in his own accent. Received Pronunciation would sound very different from an American or Australian accent, or even other parts of England, where the “r” sounds at the end of the words would be articulated much more strongly, completely changing the “auditory impact” (Smith 64). He also challenges Tolkien’s instruction to dissociate the words from their sense, arguing that this is simply impossible for us to do as sound cannot be isolated from meaning. Just as Phelpstead had us consider with his own personal example, Tolkien’s “cellar door” offers us more than an avenue to question the sounds particular to that phrase in a particular accent. Instead, we are given a chance to examine the broader cultural implications that inform his opinion of what is pleasing and what he assumes to be universal  2.2 Affect and Language There are many features of constructed languages for which affect plays a role in our interpretation. By creating a culture that has their own language, they are “othered” immediately, and are made separate from their audience through incomprehensibility. Ria Cheyne of Liverpool Hope University, suggests that a central function of a conlang is to act as a vehicle for 		19  communicating about the beings who speak the language. She states that, “just as alien utterances can express or imply meaning on different levels, so can the related languages as a whole speak to the beings who speak it” (396). In conlangs, the link between the signifier and signified is now “motivated,” meaning that it is consciously selected, unlike in “natural” languages. Cheyne argues that the more a created language “flouts the norms” of the language in which the rest of the text is written, the more exotic or foreign the author intends his audience to perceive them (392). And just as incomprehensible or unfamiliar aspects of the language can separate this culture from their audience, the use of cognates or recognizable sounds can more closely align an imagined group with their audience. Anyone engaging in language construction must now deal with the question of affect when selecting how similar or different sounding a word can be from a natural language. It is again evident here that the relationship between the sound-image and the concept is not at all arbitrary, but mindfully selected and used to accomplish a specific narrative goal. Within Tolkien’s languages, we are presented with a number of similarities to particular natural languages, and with that in mind it is important to understand the role of affect as it applies to the sound that appear in these conlangs.  In his 1977 overview of semantics, linguist John Lyons provided a broad distinction between descriptive or propositional meaning and non-descriptive or non-propositional meaning. He states that it is “a universally acknowledged fact that languages can be used to make descriptive statements which are true or false according to whether the propositions that they express are true or false” (Lyons 44). Non-descriptive meaning, on the other hand, is “less central” as it “includes an ‘expressive’ component’” (44). This expressive component is the way that a speaker can “express, rather than describe, their beliefs, attitudes and feelings” (44). This expressive component is the affective or emotive element of language. The affective element 		20  elucidates the speaker’s outlook on the propositions they are expressing (Besnier 419); this part of speech is where the speaker’s attitude toward the descriptive statement they are making is encoded. Niko Besnier points out that Lyons, and the theorists who expressed similar conceptions of firm distinctions between referential meaning, social connotations, and expressive or affective significance, are falsely relying on a number of assumptions about communication. These assumptions are that meaning is a unidirectional process, and that “cognition and emotion…are dichotomous” (420). Another assumption of the strict distinction between descriptive, social and emotive meaning is that “meaning is also attributed to the language producer,” as the affective meaning exists in the encoded expression of the attitudes and feelings of the speaker, which is in turn interpreted by the listener or listeners (420). Besnier points out that in the years since Lyons wrote his introduction to semantics, linguistic anthropologists have demonstrated the connection between signs and reality is not as unidirectional as this model would suggest, and that rather than a one-way mapping of meaning there exists instead a more “complex constitutive linkage” with emotions, meaning, and social processes. Affect has become a more popular topic of study, along two major lines of study: the role of affect in language acquisition, and its impact on poetics and performance (420-421). The role of affective language in poetics is particularly important; the practice of writing literature and creating languages alike must be concerned with affect and the emotional response the text evokes. While authors are obviously concerned with affect and phonology when writing, a conlanger has a particular investment in the system of sounds they choose to utilize, as they are essentially unlimited in which sounds they can include. The more languages a language creator is exposed to or familiar with, the wider their phonetic bank will be. It is only natural that the affective quality of these sounds should play a role in their selection.  		21  The role that affect plays in lexicon (the individual words that make up an entire language) is readily apparent. There are words in every language that can be used to cause an emotional reaction. A good example of this would be insults, and many conlangers use insults as a way to showcase what words and ideas would have the most emotional impact for the culture they are inventing. An interesting example is Dothraki, where much of the language is associated with the equestrian, as horses are very culturally relevant to the Dothraki. Their idioms are geared towards this theme as well, “hash yer dothrae chek?” is a popular greeting that translates to “do you ride well?” (Destruel 2). Dothraki insults are likewise revealing of their cultural values, as they refer to foreigners as “ifak” or walkers (2). This role of affect in lexicon can also be seen in all of Tolkien’s languages, and we have many examples to look at from Qenya. Qenya is not to be confused with Quenya; the former is the original name of the High-Eleven language that would become the Quenya of The Lord of the Rings. While the two are similar in phonology, Qenya has more Finnish influences according to some scholars. Tolkien began his work on Qenya in 1915, and it is common for Tolkien scholars to use the name Qenya to refer to early stages of the language and Quenya for the version which appears in the trilogy. In Book of Lost Tales, Christopher Tolkien wrote that, “Some early phonological description does exist for Qenya, but this became through later alterations and substitutions such a baffling muddle… that I have been unable to make use of it" (247). It was an impressive feat for the editors of Parma Eldalamberon to publish the Qenya lexicon in 1998.  Several of the words included in the lexicon do not make much sense in the world of Middle-earth; Tolkien included place names for a number of real places like Warwickshire, Oxford, Germany and Norway. Additionally, there are many words which reflect his own religious sentiments, including words that had not previously been published like evandilyon 		22  meaning gospel, and evandl for missionary. Other words, which had appeared elsewhere, were now given more Christian connotations, like Atar for father, was now noted to refer “usually to 1st Person of the Blessed Trinity” (33). His politics also inform his choices when constructing Qenya, and a particularly telling word-group with the root Kalimb was quite clearly influenced by his service in World War One, as at the time of writing the lexicon, Tolkien was serving with the British Army (Carpenter 78-84). Here are the entries for the word group: kalimbo (o) a savage, uncivilized man, barbarian. - giant, monster, troll. kalimban (n-) "Barbary", Germany. kalimbardi the Germans. kalimbarie barbarity.  It’s easy to see many ways that affect impacts the lexicon of a conlang. This can be seen both through looking at the specific types of words a language has and does not have, to get a better understanding of the culture of the speakers, but also by looking at what words the conlanger themselves chose to translate from their own natural language(s).     There are a number of variables that have an impact on sound affect, and one of the largest of these is cultural context. An interesting feature of language where we can observe this phenomenon is with the way we talk about colours. I think it is important to point out that the way I as a mother-tongue English speaker understand and am able to describe colour is different from many of the cultures whose translations I will look at. In Words and Meanings: Lexical Semantics Across Domains, Languages, and Cultures, authors Cliff Goddard and Anna Wierzbicka discuss the pervasiveness of English linguistic conventions in discussions of speech patterns in many other languages. They suggest that although linguists and anthropologists recognize, at large, the problem of centralizing English, “in practice it seems that sometimes [they] behave as if they believed that English is indeed the fittest. This is done by implicitly absolutizing some concepts which are lexically encoded in English, and giving them a 		23  fundamental status in human cognition” (80). Particularly as this applies to colour, they further suggest that “the idea of ‘colour universals’” has largely been “based on English words like white, black, red, blue, and so on” and that many languages do not even have a word for colour, demonstrating how far from universal the English-speaking perspective is. An example they provide is a popular one, a comparison between the Russian and English ideas about “blue.” Russian has no word that directly corresponds to the English word “blue,” and English in turn has no words that convey what “goluboj” or “sinji” signify. We might understand them as representing “dark blue” and “light blue,” but this is not exactly correct since “blue” is not a concept, from a Russian speaker’s perspective; “goluboj” or “sinji” are two different colours. The affective connotations around colours also varies widely cross-culturally. Some colours have more positive connotations in one language or language group than they do in another, for example orange evokes a positive national feeling in Denmark, just as green does in Ireland.   The affective connotation of words extends far beyond the way we describe colours. As I previously pointed out, insults behave similarly with regards to cultural connotation and affective quality. More important for this study is the way that affect is specifically relevant to sound. Though less immediately obvious to readers, sound is very significant for the way we interpret the languages and in turn the cultures found in Middle-earth. The way in which affect is encoded into sound is difficult to study in natural languages, though in the case of constructed languages I feel we have a unique opportunity to examine the impact that phonological elements of conlangs have. Besnier describes the phenomenon of ideophones, words that are “not necessarily onomatopoeic, whose phonological structure itself encodes meanings” (423). For example, words that start with "gl" often have to do with light (glow, gleam, glimmer, glitter, glisten, etc.) even though they are not all related historically. Similarly, words that start with "sn" often have 		24  to do with the nose (snoot, sniffle, snot, snore, sneeze, etc.). This is not to say that all words with those letters have the meaning in common, but that a notable trend exists. These type of words, Besnier suggests, are “rich in affective meaning” (424). While ideophones do not frequently appear in English, they are more common in other languages, like Siwu which uses “gidigidi” to mean “run energetically” (Pexman, Sidhu 2). The act of conscious selection on the part of a single language creator lends itself quite well to the concept of ideophones, much more readily perhaps than they appear in natural languages. Additionally, a key consideration in language creation is the affective quality of names. Psychology professors at the University of Calgary, David M. Sidhu and Penny M. Pexman, summarize how names can influence how we visualize the shape of objects. They describe a famous example of the “Bouba/Kiki Effect,” a study in which participants were shown two shapes, one rounded and the other jagged, and told they were called kiki or bouba. The majority of participants assigned the name bouba to the rounded shape, and kiki to the pointy one. The authors suggest that this trend is widespread, extending to a wide variety of phonemes (2). They summarize their findings as follows: In general, voiced bilabial consonants (i.e., /b/ and /m/) and certain other voiced consonants (e.g., /l/ and /n/) tend to be associated with rounded shapes, while voiceless stop consonants (i.e., /k/, /p/ and /t/) tend to be associated with sharp shapes …Likewise, rounded vowels (e.g., /u/ and /o/) tend to be associated with rounded shapes, while unrounded vowels (e.g., /i/ and /ʌ/) tend to be associated with sharp shapes. (2) The same authors conducted a study of first names and found that round-sounding names fit females better, and sharp-sounding names fit males better. This study was conducted with fifty-three participants, all of whom were undergraduate students at the 		25  University of Calgary and fluent English speakers. Not only did the authors report finding that gender was built into this sound symbolism, but so were particular personality traits, as participants were asked to attribute particular adjectives about the names and found that trends about disposition and character were also constructed in particular sounds. Sidhu and Pexman demonstrate that the “kiki/bouba effect” can be seen even in examples with known referents, like first names (17) and they go on to describe how this applies to fictitious names. They also return to Juliet’s famous example, and suggest that while she is correct that a rose will smell the same no matter its label, if instead it had been named “Molly” we would be more inclined to view it as friendlier3 (19). It’s important to note that their findings apply to the English-speaking participants they interviewed in their study, and other cultures may have connotations of the sounds in “rose” that are entirely different. Even so, it is very interesting that most European languages have some form of the root “rosa,” and I cannot imagine that if this root were to be changed to “zubix” or “kakafa” that we would feel the same way about it.   While the role of sound symbolism is an important consideration for any author, those who engage in world-building and importantly language construction must be even more cognizant of how the sounds they include in their creation of words and names will have an emotional meaning for readers. Non-descriptive meaning plays a large role in how Tolkien’s languages and cultures are read by international audiences, though their creation may have considered these sounds from a more eurocentric perspective. In the next chapter, I will examine the natural language sources for the                                                 3 As is indeed the case with another classic of the fantasy genre, Harry Potter, where Molly Weasley is a recognizably friendly, nurturing character.  		26  phonology and grammar of Tolkien’s languages, and how these relate to language ideologies.    		27  Chapter 3: Ethnocentrism and Language Status  3.1 Language Ideologies and Status  In sociolinguistics, the concept of language ideologies refers to the beliefs or opinions held by speakers about languages. Linguistic anthropologist Michael Silverstein has been noted as a pioneer in this field, and in 1979 he defined language ideologies as "sets of beliefs about language articulated by users as a rationalization or justification of perceived language structure and use" (193). More recently, scholars have tended to focus more on the social aspects of language ideologies, and how linguistic perspectives play a role in cultural or political systems. There are differing opinions on what constitutes language ideology, just as the larger concept of ideology itself has had various interpretations. Linguistic anthropologist Kathryn Woolard points out that a dominant view in linguistics and anthropology has been that ideology is a “somewhat unfortunate, though perhaps socioculturally interesting, distraction from primary and thus ‘real’ linguistic data” (11). It is a more recent field of study, whereas anthropology, as she further asserts, has generally “participated in a kind of naturalization of the cultural, casting culture as a shared and timeless prime motivator” (10). Woolard’s reasoning mirrors my own view that language ideologies are significant and consequential, and as much a product of culture as of individual experience. In the introduction to her collection of essays on the subject, Woolard clarifies that language ideology (which she uses interchangeably with linguistic ideology) deals with “cultural conceptions” that are “partial, interest-laden, contestable, and contested” and therefore require a careful attention to the social relations at play, and importantly relations of power (10).  This description of language ideologies is integral to understanding how Tolkien’s constructed languages reflect wider cultural relations as well as his own personal linguistic 		28  experiences. The languages that an English-language speaker would perceive to be more beautiful depends not only on their own linguistic tastes, but also on their social relationships and their knowledge of that group of speakers. As Woolard points out, however, this relationship is only partial; the impact of our cultural background contributes to but does not entirely define the way we ascribe meaning to sound. A body of work as widely influential as LOTR will undoubtedly have an impact on subsequent constructed languages in the fantasy genre. Tolkien links specific natural languages to his most celebrated and distinguished cultures, like the Elves. In doing so, he adds value to those natural languages and cultures in a particular way that readers may, even unconsciously, pick up on. The importance of the “beautiful” sounds of Finnish and Welsh appearing in Elvish reinforce eurocentric ideas about natural languages and cultures. In this chapter, I examine the kinds of linguistic biases Tolkien displays or overtly tells us he holds, and how these are revealed in the sounds of his constructed languages. I also highlight how much phonetic “borrowing” occurs from the natural languages that influence the conlangs of Middle-earth, and what impact this may have on how readers will in turn view those natural languages and the cultures that speak them.  Prestige is a term applied to language in a sociolinguistic context, and it typically describes bilingual settings and the esteem of one language in relation to another amongst a group of speakers. There are a number of factors that influence how prestigious a language may be, and different groups of speakers will value particular languages more in specific contexts. If the same community of speakers are switching between languages in different situations, this is considered diglossia. This usually applies in situations where two languages are used with different prestige levels are used, depending on the subject matter or where they are being spoken. Diglossia occurs when multilingual speakers will choose to use particular languages (or 		29  particular dialects) in different contexts, often with one being considered more formal. While there are numerous natural languages examples of this phenomenon, language prestige also exists with constructed languages and their speakers. Because Tolkien carefully considered the linguistic landscape of his books, his languages have constructed evolutionary trees, and the Elvish languages in particular demonstrate differing prestige levels.  In her examination of constructed languages in works of science fiction, contemporary literature scholar Ria Cheyne claims that “created languages, just like their real-world counterparts, are often designed with the aim of influencing views about language” (395). A reader coming across a constructed language is invited to examine the use of language as a creative enterprise; authors can manipulate traditional structures to offer insights into how language works. The way this is done has a particular power. A constructed language can challenge or reinforce one’s own understanding of linguistic superiority. To elucidate my meaning here, I will use the example of Trigedasleng from the television show “The 100.” This particular invented language might reinforce ideas about English being an essential international language. The characters in this post-apocalyptic setting have their own pidgin language, Trigedasleng, which every member of the community is able to speak, and yet they all also speak flawless contemporary English, which suggests that English has an intrinsic value that even thousands of years and an entirely new language cannot outweigh. Constructed languages in fiction have the ability to both impact and reflect the linguistic values not only of the invented cultures within, but also those of their audiences. Cheyne adds that, “as readers encounter a created language…they only acquire information about the language in order to understand the character of the beings who speak it” (396). Throughout The Lord of the Rings, readers are given many examples of the varying levels of prestige amongst the languages, both within language 		30  families, like the different Elvish languages, and across them, as with Mannish tongues (the languages of the race of Men on Middle-earth) and Elvish ones. There are the contexts of use which provide indications of which languages have a higher status, but even on the level of the language names we can see a hierarchical relationship. The translations provided for “Sindarin” is “Grey-Elven,” and the Sindar are grey because they have not been to Valinor (or the “Undying Lands” which is not dissimilar to a faerie realm, see Fig.1.) whereas “Quenya” translates simply to “language,” which seems to be a fairly pointed way of marking its primacy.  In order to further examine language ideologies of these constructed languages, this chapter will examine the linguistic and particularly the phonological qualities of both Quenya and Sindarin, as well as Rohirric and a few other significant languages from Middle-earth. To inform this discussion, I will begin with a consideration of Tolkien’s linguistic background, and the natural language “sources” that inform his constructed languages.   3.2 The Pleasure of Language: “O felix peccatum Babel!”   After World War I, Tolkien returned to his studies and was invited to work as a junior editor of the Oxford English Dictionary. According to Daniel Grotta’s biography, this job motivated “Tolkien’s greatest impetus to transform Elvish from an experiment to a life-long pursuit” (38). Walter E. Meyers suggests that Tolkien’s work on the OED positioned him “as the academic heir…of the nineteenth century tradition of historical philology” and that thanks in part to this, Tolkien would shape The Lord of the Rings to fit not just the languages as they looked at the time of the story, but an entire history of cultural and linguistic evolution. He created a “whole world of languages…molded by the principles of historical change” (Meyers 149). The “experiment” that was Elvish was influenced not only by Tolkien’s extensive knowledge of the historical development of language, but also from the deep joy he found in learning and using 		31  languages. At the end of his 1955 O’Donnell lecture “English and Welsh,” Tolkien offers some insight into the pleasure he finds in language. His Latin exclamation, O felix peccatum Babel! (Oh, happy the sin of Babel) is a play on the medieval aphorism for the “fortunate fall,” O felix peccatum Adae (Oh, happy the sin of Adam!). According to Tolkien, good comes out of evil through the multiplicity of language because we discover our own “personal linguistic potential” or our “native language” (190). The richness of experience the diversity of language offers allows us to find our own “inherent linguistic predilections” and Tolkien feels this pleasure is more often or more strongly found in the study of foreign languages. He attributes this to two factors, the first being that we may discover the desirable elements denied to us in our mother tongue, and the second that we might “escape” from the dull or inattentive use of our mother tongue (191). Tolkien highlights that the kind of pleasure one takes from language will be partially informed by our individual “linguistic potential,” but also that many of these predilections would be shared within communities.  Tolkien’s own linguistic predilections are informed by his extensive linguistic knowledge, and he provides examples of the kind of pleasure particular languages provide for him. Latin, he says, was too “normal” to provide any particularly strong pleasure or displeasure, while French was less pleasurable than any other language he had studied (191). Greek was enjoyable for its “fluidity punctuated by hardness” and it was captivating in its “antiquity and alien remoteness.” Spanish was for him the most pleasurable of the Romance languages, though Gothic was the first to “take [him] by story…to move [his] heart” (191-2). Welsh, on the other hand, Tolkien describes more viscerally, as an embodied experience. Tolkien shared that it was harder for him to come by material in Welsh, and perhaps the act of persistently seeking out opportunities to study it played a role in the impact Welsh had on him. He describes it as striking 		32  at him, “piercing [his] linguistic heart,” a sort of ever-present call “bound to win in the end” (192). The pleasure he finds in Welsh, though it is informed by his own personal tastes, would not be “peculiar to [himself] among the English” (194). Tolkien believes that the enjoyment we find in language is a product not just of our individual natures, but also of collective and culturally imparted histories and patterns.  Tolkien did not think this “English and Welsh” speech was particularly impressive, and later called it unoriginal and dull. This is far from the case, as the speech offers not only a celebration of linguistic exploration, but also valuable insight into Tolkien’s process of language creation and his philological and phonetic choices in constructing his languages. Furthermore, as John Garth contends, this speech provides a “warning against theories of ‘race,’ a daring hypothesis about inborn linguistic tastes, and the clearest expression of Tolkien’s views on linguistic aesthetics” (Garth 162). In the speech, Tolkien asserts that “language is the prime differentiator of peoples- not of ‘races’” which Garth argues challenges views of racial identity versus cultural self-realization (162). Tolkien’s views on linguistic aesthetics evolved over his career. They were the primary focus in his talk “A Secret Vice.” In the foreword to The Monsters and the Critics, Christopher Tolkien explains that although “A Secret Vice” was published in 1931, the single manuscript for it has no date and gives no indication of where it was delivered (MC 3). The paper begins with a reference to an Esperanto Conference at Oxford being “a year or more ago,” and from that Christopher infers when the speech was drafted. The manuscript is heavily revised “apparently for a second delivery” between twenty and forty years later (MC 3). For the version that he publishes in The Monsters and the Critics, Christopher Tolkien adopts some of the edits made to the manuscript. These differences do prove to be significant to Tolkien’s discussion of linguistic aesthetics and pleasure. In its earliest version, Tolkien 		33  discusses the “aesthetic pleasure afforded by Greek, Welsh and Finnish,” which according to Carl Phelpstead implies that “their beauty is generally apparent” (Tolkien and Wales 42). In the published edition of “A Secret Vice,” Tolkien says of these languages that they have a characteristic beauty “readily seizable by the sensitive at first sight” (MC 207). Tolkien again brings up his fascination with Welsh in this speech, stating that, “I have heard others independently voice my own feeling that the Welsh names on coal-trucks have stirred a sense of beauty” (MC 207). It is reasonable to assume here that the “others” he refers to are English, for two reasons. One, Welsh trucks probably spend more time around the UK than they do other parts of the world, and two, his later appeal to the Arthurian and Celtic stories that he argues Welsh evokes, for it is like a “native language” that he says “we would still go home [to]” referring to his own countrymen (MC 194). It is important to understand who Tolkien is referring to when he suggests that it is not merely a personal sense of beauty in the language, because this points to the culturally shared elements of phonetic appreciation, and it contributes to my assertion that Tolkien’s languages more generally were written with an English-speaking audience in mind. His appreciation for the beauty he finds in Welsh likely has more to do with the phonological qualities of Welsh than the look of it written down, based on his discussion of Welsh as a beautiful sounding language. Here again is the influence of sound symbolism, the “characteristic…beautiful word-form” of Welsh. His reaction may be more characteristic of the English, rather than English-speakers more broadly, and certainly does not seem to apply very broadly to other speakers. In “English and Welsh,” Tolkien describes one Norwegian radio host calling the Welsh language “a mass of grunts and gargling sounds" (MC 197). While Tolkien may have felt that the English shared a sense of appreciation for Welsh, this was not always the case. Fans of the BBC television show Blackadder will remember the rather cutting remarks 		34  made by the eponymous butler in the third series, “You need half a pint of phlegm in your throat just to pronounce the place names. Never ask for directions in Wales…you'll be washing spit out of your hair for a fortnight” (Blackadder III, “Amy and Amiability”). This example is indicative of a wider trend towards a tendency to poke fun at – or indeed openly mock – Welsh for being unpronounceable or not worth revival efforts. Tolkien’s praise for the language here demonstrates either a particular social understanding of what his contemporaries would find pleasing, or his own personal preference which he believes to be widespread. In either case, this is a clear example of how linguistic preferences are informed by multiple sources, both cultural and personal.  3.3 Tolkien’s “NatLang” Sources and the Languages of Middle Earth While discussing the influence of existing natural languages on Tolkien’s created ones, Carl Hostetter points out the difficulty with the idea that the Elvish languages are “based” on Finnish and Welsh (335). While the influence of these natural languages is important, it is subtler than one might first assume. Hostetter suggests that there are three key features of this influence: structural, phonological and lexical. This list, he suggests, “decreases in order both of abstractness and…of importance as influencing Tolkien’s inventions” (335). Most might assume that the majority of the borrowing would come from the lexicon, and the “pairing of particular phonetic forms with particular meaning” (335) but Hostetter is keen to point out that while these similarities are present, this is the least “influenced” aspect of Tolkien’s languages. That is to say that while Sindarin may be “based on” Welsh, we will see much more influence from the structure and phonology of these languages, than we will in the actual lexicon (335). These distinctions are very important, as what I wish to examine is primarily the phonologies Tolkien 		35  invents, and how the sounds have an inherent significance, beyond their lexical meaning. In his speeches and essays, Tolkien focuses more on the structural and phonological characteristics of the languages that moved him, and consequently these are the elements of the highest importance for my examination. In the following sections, I examine the sounds in a number of Tolkien’s languages, to highlight the specific elements of natural languages which appear in the conlangs. I use this information to connect the cultures in Tolkien’s works to his system of language status. With the understanding that there is a hierarchy of aesthetics and value ascribed to the constructed languages, it becomes clear that existing values (for natural languages) can be reinforced in the texts. Ethnocentric perceptions of beauty and value in language are inscribed into the cultures of Tolkien’s Middle-earth through the conlangs.   3.4 Rohirric Language and People The Mannish languages (those spoken by the race of men in Middle-earth) offer a very different insight into Tolkien’s opinions about language, as these are not languages he devised but instead presented in translation. Rohan, a kingdom of men, has a countryside of pastures and grassland, which is said to resemble a “sea of grass.” The inhabitants, or “Eorlingas,” are described as proficient horsemen, and importantly, as less culturally developed than the kingdom of Gondor. In The Return of the King, Tolkien contrasted the Gondorians and the Rohirrim, designating the Rohirrim as “a simpler and more primitive people living in contact with a more venerable culture, and occupying lands that had once been part of its domain” (RK appendix F). In a discussion of the culture and history of the Rohirrim, Thomas Honeger argues that the “crucial decision” that would influence the development of the Rohirrim “came with the choice of language” (119). He summarizes the context of the language amongst the other “Mannish 		36  core-languages,” pointing out that The Lord of the Rings is presented (in Tolkien’s narrative) as a translation of the original Westron, also called Common Speech (120). Honegger also writes that it is important to understand all the other Mannish languages with this understanding, and provides Tolkien’s own table of what he calls “linguistic correspondences”: Language of the Shire = modern English Language of the Dale = Norse (used by Dwarves of that region) Language of Rohan= Old English “Modern English” is a lingua franca spoken by all people (except a few secluded folk like Lórien) but little and ill by orcs. (Tolkien, qtd. in Honneger 5)   This is used to create an understanding of the level of linguistic variation between these languages, in addition to making it much easier for the average reader with our “translated” version of the text. Tolkien represents the Rhohirrim language with Old English, specifically the dialect of the Kingdom of Mercia, which includes his own stomping grounds Birmingham and Oxford. While Tolkien argued against drawing any direct correlations between the Anglo-Saxons and the Rohirrim (Honegger 121) it is still obvious that some relation exists, and Honegger also suggests there are elements of their culture reminiscent of the East Germanic Goths (123).  3.5 Elvish Languages: A brief history of the different Elvish groups is important to note here to understand their relative prestige. Sindarin is the name of the language of the Sindar, or Grey-elves, so named because they are not “Elves of the light” (or “Calaquendi” who had been to Valinor). Quenya was the speech of two groups of Eldar (or High Elves) the Noldor and the Vanyar, who left Middle-earth for Valinor. Below is an abridged representation of the Elven groups, the groups in yellow are 		37  known as the Calaquendi, or “The Elves of Light” and the “High Elves” who have been to Valinor. At the time in the history of Middle-earth in which The Lord of the Rings is set, Sindarin is the language most commonly spoken by the elves, and is often referred to simply as “elven-tongue.” The name “Sindarin” is actually a Quenya word, and what the Sindar called their own language is not known.  Figure 1: The Elves  Figure 1. The groups in yellow are the Calaquendi, the High Elves, and in green are the Moriquendi, the Elves of the Darkness who have not seen Light of the Two Trees of Valinor. Source: Lord of the Rings Wiki, based on information from The Silmarillion.    Quendi(name	for	all	Elves)Eldar(took	the	"Great	Journey"	from	Cuivenen)Vanyar("Fair	Elves")Noldor("Deep	Elves")Teleri("Singers"	those	who	remained	in	Beleriand)Falmari(followed	the Great	Journey into Beleriand and	reached Valinor)Sindar	(the	"Grey	Elves",	All	Teleri	who	remained	in	Beleriand)Nandor(includes	Silvan	and	Green	Elves)Avari	("the	Unwilling"	who	did	not	take	the	"Great	Journey")		38  3.5.1 Sindarin Sindarin is called the “Grey Language” or “Grey Elven.” Some notable moments from The Lord of the Rings where Sindarin appears would include Bilbo’s song in Rivendell, as well as Gandalf’s spell and the inscription on the Gates of Moria. The former is the longest Sindarin text that appears in print, a poem called “A Elbereth Gilthoniel,” the first few lines of which looks like: “A Elbereth Gilthoniel/ silivren penna míriel/ o menel aglar elenath!” (The Fellowship of the Ring). In a 1955 letter to the Houghton Mifflin Co. Tolkien explained in a footnote the connection between Sindarin and existing natural languages: “The 'Sindarin', a Grey-elven language, is in fact constructed deliberately to resemble Welsh phonologically and to have a relation to High-elven similar to that existing between British …and Latin” (Letters 232). As I have made reference to previously, Sindarin shares many phonetic features in common with Welsh, including its phonotactics. The phonotactics of a language are the “relation of sequence…in which phonemes or other phonological units” can appear (Matthews n.p.). In English, an example of this is that a word can begin with at most three consonants, and only particular sets of consonants. A particular commonality between Sindarin and Welsh can be seen in their syllabic stress patterns. In Sindarin words that have two syllables, the stress will fall on the first (Fauskanger). In a section describing the stress in Eldarin languages (the language family to which both Sindarin and Quenya belong) in the appendices of The Return of the King, Tolkien notes:   The position of the 'accent' or stress is not marked, since in the Eldarin languages concerned its place is determined by the form of the word. In words of two syllables it falls in practically all cases on the first syllable. In longer words it falls on the last syllable but one, where that contains a long vowel, a diphthong, or a vowel followed by two (or more) 		39  consonants. Where the last syllable but one contains (as often) a short vowel followed by only one (or no) consonant, the stress falls on the syllable before it, the third from the end. Words of the last form are favoured in the Eldarin languages, especially Quenya. (Appendix E) In Welsh, the stress typically lands on the penultimate syllable in words that have two or more syllables, though the final syllable does receive a higher pitch (Hannahs 43).  Below, I have included the International Phonetic Alphabet charts outlining the consonant and vowel sounds present in Welsh and Sindarin, respectively.  Table 1: Welsh Vowel IPA Chart   Front Central Back Short Long Short Long Short Long Close ɪ iː ɨ̞ ɨː ʊ uː Mid ɛ eː ə (əː) ɔ oː Open   a aː   Source: Glyn Jones, “The Distinctive Vowels and Consonants of Welsh,” in Welsh Phonology: Selected Readings, Cardiff UP, 1984, 40-64.  Table 2: Sindarin Vowel IPA Chart Vowels Front Near-front Near-back Back Close i y   u Near-close  ɪ ʊ  Open-mid ɛ   ɔ Open a  		40   Table 3: Welsh Consonant IPA Chart  Labial Dental Alveolar  Postalveolar Palatal Velar Uvular Glottal Nasal m  n   ŋ   Plosive p b  t  d   k g   Affricate    (t͡ ʃ) (d͡ʒ)     Fricative f v θ ð s (z) ɬ ʃ   χ h Trill   r      Approximant    l  j (ç) w   Source: Glyn Jones, “The distinctive vowels and consonants of Welsh,” in Welsh Phonology: Selected Readings, Cardiff UP, 1984, 40-64.  The sounds in this chart which are in brackets are either allophones4, or found only in loanwords.5  Table 4: Sindarin Consonant IPA Chart  Labial Dental Alveolar Palatal Velar Glottal Nasal m  n  ŋ  Plosive p b  t  d  k g  Affricate       Fricative f v θ ð s ɬ   x h Trill   r    Approximant    l j   ʍ w   It is clear that there is a significant overlap here in the consonants of these two languages. While Sindarin includes neither uvular nor postalveolar consonants, this is only at odds with two sounds regularly present in Welsh. While this similarity has been frequently noted by scholars, a                                                 4 Allophones are sets of multiple possible spoken sounds (or phones) that can be used to pronounce a single phoneme, typically without changing the meaning of the word. These are variations of the same sounds that change due to phonetic processes during production.   5 Loanwords are adopted from one language (“donor”) into another, without translation. English examples include “Kindergarten” from German or “Café” from French.  		41  comparison of the specific common sounds found in these languages helps provide a more solid basis for this claim. It may be difficult to get an idea of what Sindarin actually sounds like from these sound inventories, but conlanger David Salo has provided a very helpful chart in his book A Gateway to Sindarin. He includes examples of pronunciations in American English, and I have adapted his list below to provide some context for the sounds that make up Sindarin.                   		42  Table 5: Phonology of Sindarin Letter IPA Example Pronunciation Notes a, ä a Aragorn  a is most like a in English father  á aː   á is the same sound as above, pronounced just noticeably longer in duration than a ae a͡ɛ Maedhros like the i in English high, occasionally written as ai in non-final syllables au, aw a͡ʊ Glaurung;Araw au and aw are most like ou in English proud (but beginning with sound of Sindarin a) b b Beleriand  Like English b c k Celeborn always like in English k. Never soft c like in English cell. ch x orch always like ch in Scottish loch. Never like ch in English chill. d d Dúnedain  like English d dh ð Caradhras like the voiced English th in those, blithe.  e e Beren e is most like English e in bed é eː   Sindarin é is pronounced just noticeably longer in duration than Sindarin e, but otherwise is pronounced the same. ei e͡ɪ Ereinion Sindarin ei is most like ey in English grey, always with the y off-glide. f f, v Fëanor represents [v] when final or before n, and [f] everywhere else. g ɡ Galadriel always hard g like in English gasp. Never soft g like in English gem. h h Húrin like the h in  English hill or ahead hw ʍ   a voiceless w, like the wh of English wheel, whale  i ɪ, j Minas Tirith Sindarin i is usually pronounced as the i in marine.  at the beginning of a word before a vowel, the Sindarin i is more like y in English young í iː Círdan like i but twice as long in duration l l Legolas like the l of English less,  palatalized (as in million) between e or i and a consonant  lh ɬ Lhûn a voiceless l m m Mordor like English m 		43  n n Nevrast like English n, or before c or g more like the ng in ring ng ŋ(ɡ) Fingolfin;Glamdring like ng in English ring, kingdom, between vowels or before r, l, w, like ng in hungry  o, ö ɔ Gorgoroth Sindarin o is most like o in (British) English hot, but more rounded  ó ɔː Dor-lómin pronounced the same but twice as long as Sindarin o oe o͡e   like oy in English toy p p Pengolodh like p in spy ph f, fː Ephel Dúath Represents [f] when final, [fː] everywhere else. r r Boromir Sindarin r is always trilled or at least flapped wherever possible (like in Scottish English)   rh r̥ Rhovanion a voiceless r s s Sirion voiceless, Sindarin s is always pronounced like s in English say, loose, and never like s in English ease (There is no voiced z in Sindarin) t t Túrin like English t in stair th θ Ecthelion like English voiceless th in thick, path u ʊ Curufin Sindarin u is most like u in English brute ú uː Lúthien like Sindarin u, prolonged for twice as long  ui u͡ɪ Orodruin similar to French oui in Louis but one syllable v v Tinúviel like English v w w Gwaihir like English w y y Emyn Muil Like the sound u in French vu  Source: David Salo, The Sounds of Sindarin, A Gateway to Sindarin: A Grammar of an Elvish Language from J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings, U Utah P, 2004, Print, table 2.1 (example words from “Sindarin Phonology” on   Moving from the level of individual sounds to that of words, there are different categories of language morphologies: isolating (analytical) agglutinating, polysynthetic and fusional languages. Sindarin is a fusional or “inflectional” language, meaning that a single morpheme can mark multiple pieces of grammatical information. For example, tense and number may be 		44  marked together in one morpheme. While Sindarin does not have gender markers, it does have two systems of grammatical number, just as Welsh does. Welsh has a system to mark differences between singular and plural, as well as between collective and singulative. Making a noun plural can be done by changing the suffix (as in the case of moch meaning "pigs” in basic form, where the suffix is added to form the singuar mochyn “pig”). Plurals can also be marked through vowel mutation (for example in bachgen for “boy” and bechgyn for “boys”). This also happens in Sindarin, where some plural nouns are marked with a suffix like –in (Drû becomes Drúin for "wild men”) where others demonstrate vowel change (Moredhel, and Moredhil, meaning "Dark-Elves") and other words use a combination of vowel mutation and suffix (Words, Phrases and Passages 45-46). Both Welsh and Sindarin mark not only singular vs. plural nouns, but collective and singulative as well. Just as Welsh does, Sindarin marks collective nouns with a suffix. One example of this is elenath meaning “all of the stars” where the suffic –ath is used to mark the collective (45-46). Another similarity is in word order. Welsh word order is VSO, meaning a typical sentence will have the verb followed by the subject and then the object. Only around ten percent of natural languages follow this sentence structure (Tomlin 22). A sample Welsh sentence, “Welodd Siôn ddim y defaid” meaning “Sion did not see the sheep” can be broken down as: Welodd (saw) Siôn ddim (negative) y (the) defaid (sheep), which illustrates the order of verb, subject and object (Borsley 29). Sindarin also follows the VSO word order, so a Sindarin sentence could look like “caro den i innas lín” which translates to “may one do your will,” or “may your will be done” but would break down to: caro [may do] den [one] i innas lín [your will] (Salo 204). Not only are the sounds of these languages similar, but there is also obvious overlap in their syntax and grammar.   		45  3.5.2 Quenya In my second chapter, I outlined the stages of development for the High-Elven tongue, first called Qenya and later Quenya. David Salo, the linguist and conlanger who worked on the Elvish languages for the film version of The Lord of the Rings, has written a comparison of Qenya and Quenya phonology. He outlines that the original Qenya and the newer Quenya “differ considerably in terms of vocabulary, underlying structure, and…in grammar” but that the “phonetic inventory is pretty much identical, and the distribution of sounds is very similar” (Elfling online forum, 2013). A scholarly discussion of the Qenya vocabulary was published in the 1998 Parma Eldalamberon edition that looked at the Qenyaqetsa or Qenya Lexicon documents Tolkien had sketched out beginning in 1915. As the work on Qenya was started decades before the novels, several of the words included in the lexicon do not make much sense in the world of Middle-earth. As noted earlier, Tolkien included place names for a number of real places like Warwickshire, Oxford, Germany and Norway. Additionally, there are many words which reflect his own religious sentiments, including words that had not previously been published like evandilyon meaning gospel, and evandl for missionary. Other words which had appeared in other works Tolkien published were now given more Christian connotations; for instance, Atar for father, was now noted to refer to “usually to 1st Person of the Blessed Trinity” (33).  The primary linguistic consideration this study is concerned with is phonology, and as such I will not spend much time differentiating these two evolutionary stages in the construction of High-Elven. As David Salo has pointed out these languages are phonetically very similar, I will focus from this point on Quenya, the version appearing in the majority of the canon. Just as Sindarin is widely connected with Welsh, Quenya is similarly influenced by Finnish. Tolkien’s 		46  fascination with Finnish dates to 1907 when he first read a translation of Kalevala, the national epic of Finland, gathered from a collection of Finnish oral folklore and mythology. According to biographer Humphrey Carpenter, Tolkien was so invested in this work that he found a Finnish grammar and learned the language well enough to read Kalevala in its original version (Letters, 227). The stories had a powerful influence on Tolkien’s writing, directly inspiring characters like Túrin who was based on the ill-fated Kullervo (West 211). In an interview for the BBC, prominent Tolkien scholar Verlyn Flieger also suggested that the “most Finnish” aspect of Tolkien’s works was the mood, “there is a strain of deep tragedy and pessimism that runs through Tolkien's work, even The Hobbit and certainly Lord of the Rings. The Story of Kullervo is without a doubt the darkest story he ever wrote. It is our first experience of that darkness" (Sander). The Finnish language itself had an affective quality for Tolkien, and he wrote in a letter to W.H. Auden that the discovery of the Finnish Grammar in Exeter College was like “discovering a complete wine-cellar filled with bottles of an amazing wine of a kind and flavor never tasted before. It quite intoxicated me” (Letters 228). After this, he tells Auden that he “gave up the attempt to invent an 'unrecorded' Germanic language, and my 'own language' – or series of invented languages – became heavily Finnicized in phonetic pattern and structure” (Letters 228). In another letter, this one to W. R. Matthews, Tolkien expands on the connection between Finnish and Quenya specifically, outlining the phonetic elements that are influenced by Finnish: The ingredients in Quenya are various, but worked out into a self-consistent character not precisely like any language that I know. Finnish, which I came across when I had first begun to construct a 'mythology' was a dominant influence, but that has been much reduced [now in late Quenya]. It survives in 		47  some features: such as the absence of any consonant combinations initially, the absence of the voiced stops b, d, g (except in mb, nd, ng, ld, rd, which are favoured) and the fondness for the ending -inen, -ainen, -oinen, also in some points of grammar, such as the inflexional endings -sse (rest at or in), -nna (movement to, towards), and -llo (movement from); the personal possessives are also expressed by suffixes; there is no gender. (From a letter to W. R. Matthews, dated 13–15 June 1964, published in Parma Eldalamberon)  As with Sindarin, I will outline the sounds present in Quenya and in Sindarin, to demonstrate the similarities in the phonologies of these languages. Quenya has five vowels, and a distinction for length. The short vowels are: a, e, i, o, u and the long ones are marked by an acute accent, like: á, é, í, ó, ú (the only official Tolkien-published phonology is out of print, issue #19 of Parma Eldalamberon called “Quenya Phonology”).  Table 6: Quenya Vowel IPA chart   Front Back Close i(ː) u(ː) Close-mid eː oː Open-mid ɛ ɔ Open a(ː)  Source: J. R. R. Tolkien. "Outline of Phonology", Parma Eldalamberon (19), p. 88    		48   Table 7: Finnish Vowel IPA chart   Front Back  unrounded rounded unrounded rounded Close i y  u Mid e ø  o Open æ  ɑ  Source: Suomi, Kari, et al. Finnish Sound Structure: Phonetics, Phonology, Phonotactics and Prosody. U of Oulu, 2008.  Table 8: Quenya Consonant IPA chart  Labial Alveolar Palatal Velar Glottal Nasal m n  ŋ   Stop p b t d  k ɡ   Fricative f v s (ç) x h Trill  r    Semivowel (ʍ) w   j   Approximant  l    Source: J. R. R. Tolkien. "Outline of Phonology", Parma Eldalamberon (19), p. 43  As noted in the previous IPA Welsh and Sindarin charts, the brackets indicate sounds that appear in the language as allophones or in loanwords.  		49   Table 9: Finnish Consonant IPA Chart  Labial Alveolar Palatal Velar Glottal  Nasal m n  ŋ   Stop p (b) t d  k (ɡ)  ʔ  Fricative (f)  s (ʃ)   h Trill  r    Approximate ʋ l j    Source: Suomi, Kari, et al. Finnish Sound Structure: Phonetics, Phonology, Phonotactics and Prosody. U of Oulu, 2008. There is less overlap between these IPA charts than between Sindarin and Welsh, though these languages certainly share many elements in common. Some of the sounds that appear in Quenya but not in Finnish could be the result of the other languages Tolkien considered in his construction of High-Eleven, like Latin. Structurally, Quenya resembles Finnish in its morphology as both Finnish and Quenya are agglutinating languages, whereas Latin is a synthetic, fusional one. The sentence structure is also consistent between these languages, both Quenya and Finnish follow the subject-verb-object order (SVO), though both are freer than in English where the same order exists.   3.6 Black Speech and Other Languages The Black Speech, also called the Language of Mordor, was created by Sauron (a Maia formerly devoted to Aulë) to be used by his slaves and those he ruled over. Hostetter writes that the orcs 		50  speak a “debased form” of the language, along with Common Speech. He also says that Tolkien (and in turn, Sauron) constructed the language with “harsh and guttural sounds” (Languages Invented by Tolkien, 343) including characteristic consonant clusters like sh, gh, and zg. Very little work was done to develop this language, and the inscription on the One Ring, “Ash nazg durbatulûk, ash nazg gimbatul, ash nazg thrakatulûk, agh burzum-ishi krimpatul,” is the only example of “pure” Black Speech that exists in Tolkien’s works. The other instances of this language, like the curse of the Uruk from Mordor in “The Two Towers,” are considered debased, and as such have no one consistent translation. The curse is written (in a Romanized script) as “Uglúk u bagronk sha pushdug Saruman-glob búbhosh skai” and has been translated by Christopher Tolkien in “The Peoples of Middle Earth” to mean “Uglúk to the cesspool, sha! the dungfilth; the great Saruman-fool, skai!" but Hostetter’s translation published in Vinyar Tengwar was "Uglúk to the dung-pit with stinking Saruman-filth, pig-guts, gah!" Without a fully developed language, the lexicon for this language is largely based on the few examples of “debased” Black Speech in the novels. Another language is Khuzdul, the language created by the Aulë, the Vala who also created the first Dwarves. Some consider this language to operate like a conlang even in the context of the narrative, as Aulë taught the Dwarves the language he had devised for them. Early in constructing his languages, Tolkien devised three language “branches” which were later revised. These original three branches to which all his conlangs were attributed included Oromëan, named for Oromë, who taught the first Elves to speak; Aulëan, to which Khuzdul belongs, and Melkian, named for Melkor, which included the languages of orcs and other evils 		51  beings, but is not related to “Black Speech” (Lhammas,6 The Lost Road and Other Writings). It is difficult to say firmly how many languages Tolkien created, as this count may vary based on the level of “completeness” of the language, and different historical iterations of a language may or may not count independently. A very comprehensive list would include: Table 10: List of Languages Elvish languages:  o Primitive Quendian (the original language of the Elves) o The Avarin languages (six, one for each Avari tribe, though only one word appears from each) o Common Eldarin (early tongue of the Eldar) o Quenya (both Vanyarin Quenya and Ñoldorin Quenya) o Common Telerin, and Telerin of Valinor (considered a dialect of Quenya) o Sindarin (including at least three dialects) o Nandorin (which becomes extinct) Mannish languages:   o Languages of forefathers of the First and Third Houses of the Atanatári o Taliska (two dialects, based on Germanic languages, has an extant but unpublished grammar)  o Adûnaic o Westron  o Hobbitish  o Black Adûnaic of Black Númenóreans o Languages of Men of Eriador during the Second Age o Languages of Northmen (Dalish and Rohirric) o Language of the Second House of the Atanatari (including Haladin and Dunlending) o Drûg languages (including the Language of the Drúedain of Brethil and the Language of the Woses of Drúadan Forest) o Many Haradrim languages (Harad being an immense area of land, south of Gondor) o Many tongues of Easterlings (those who live in Rhûn, east of Mordor)  o The tongues of Forodwaith and the Lossoth Tongue of Dwarves: o Khuzdul  Languages of the Ents   o “Old” and “New” Entish                                                  6 Lhammas is the fifth chapter of the second section in The Lost Road and Other Writings, entitled “Part Two: Valinor and Middle-earth before The Lord of the Rings.” It is a sociolinguistic account of the languages of Middle-earth, attributed to a Pengolod, and elf of Gondolin.   		52  Languages of the Ainur (the Valar and Maiar)  o Valarin o Black Speech, created by Sauron   Source: adapted from   A more comprehensive study, comparing what is known of these other languages, would provide further insight into Tolkien’s process of language invention. An examination of the languages of the Haradrim and the Easterlings would, in my opinion, be particularly valuable for a discussion of linguistic and cultural bias in conlanging. We have little language material for these cultures, which in itself is telling. A closer look at what linguistic elements, and particularly phonological elements, Tolkien chose to include with these mysterious Eastern cultures of Middle-earth would be important for distinguishing the sounds he found less pleasing than those he would give to the elves, and perhaps harsher than those he gave to the men. Though there is very little material available on these languages, in The Two Towers we are given a description of the Haradrim as “swarthy” and the physical landscape is said to have jungles populated with apes and elephant-like creatures called mûmakil. In The Return of the King, we are told that to Gondorians, the Haradrim sounded harsh and beast-like.  There are several fan sites, particularly related to LOTR-themed role playing games, which imagine these languages and create names for places and people. Mûmakil may be the only word that appears in print from a Haradrim language, but fans have taken up the enterprise of imagining both this place and the languages that fill it. The kind of “fanlang” based on Tolkien’s works in these online communities that have formed around games like The Lord of the Rings Strategy Battle Game have explicitly tied Haradrim (or Haradaic on some sites) to African and Arabic languages, including the use of actual Arabic words as Haradrim ones. While 		53  this does not speak to any direct parallel Tolkien may have had in mind, it does strongly support my claim that the connection of his languages to existing natural languages has had a significant impact on fans of his novels and subsequent world-building efforts. In the imagination of fans, as in the imagination of Tolkien himself, names are particularly significant. As Treebeard the Ent puts it “real names tell you the story of the things they belong to” (Two Towers 454). Author Michael T. Saler believes that it was Tolkien’s “cultural nationalism” which influenced his representation of language in essentialist terms, and that language was the “primary vehicle by which …an essential English nature might be conveyed” (178). In fact, when Dutch translators provided their own terms for the names of people and places in the translated version of the novels, Tolkien objected on the grounds that “The book is English, by an Englishman” and that those references were “integral and essential” (Saler 179).   3.7 Metalinguistics and Determinism   One of the influences on Tolkien’s understanding of language is his fellow Inkling, Owen Barfield. The Inklings, an informal literary group at Oxford, famously included both Tolkien and C.S. Lewis. Barfield, known as “"the first and last Inkling," was a philosopher and linguist, and according to Ross Smith his particular understanding of sound-symbolism and the connection of language to land was reflected by Tolkien (Smith 69-71). In J. R. R Tolkien Encyclopedia: Scholarship and Critical Assessment, Barfield warrants his own section, in which Verlyn Flieger summarizes his work on the interconnected relationship of language and perception wherein words “express and foster ongoing development in human consciousness” (50). C. S Lewis wrote to Barfield about the impact Barfield’s work had on Tolkien in a 1928 letter:  		54  You might like to know that when Tolkien dined with me the other night he said, apropos of something quite different, that your conception of the ancient semantic unity had modified his whole outlook, and he was always just going to say something in a lecture when your concept stopped him in time. ‘It is one of those things,’ he said, ‘that when you have once seen it there are all sorts of things you never say again.’ (Carpenter 42)  Ross Smith relates Barfield’s view that words retain their original character and their “ancient oneness with natural phenomenon” to Tolkien’s perspective that language is intricately connected to the land or physical environment that it is from (Smith 70-71). Smith also suggests that this line of thinking can be further drawn out to connect with ideas of linguistic determinism, as in the works of Benjamin Whorf and Edward Sapir. Sometimes called the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis (though the two never co-authored anything), linguistic determinism refers to the idea that “we see and hear and otherwise experience very largely as we do because the language habits of our community predispose certain choices of interpretation” (Sapir 210). Another way to understand this theory is that we are unable to think with words we do not possess, or that we will have difficulty processing which we are unable to articulate. This theory has important applications in language creation. Through conlangs, authors can explore the potential implications of linguistic determinism. This is something George Orwell does with the political impacts of Newspeak in 1984, or more recently how Ted Chiang in “Story of Your Life” (adapted to the movie Arrival) employs linguistic determinism and a constructed logographic language to explore the linearity of time as an illusion. To whatever extent we accept the theory of linguistic determinism, it can be an important tool for studying constructed languages. Walter E. Meyers points out that there is an important corollary to the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, “if it is 		55  true that our language determines our perception of reality, then whoever controls language controls the perception of reality as well” (163).   Through incorporating sounds from particular natural languages into Middle-earth cultures, Tolkien has associated the cultures within the novel with those natural ones to which they are linguistically similar to. Tolkien associates privileged natural languages (like Finnish, Welsh, and Latin) with the “linguistically superior” cultures within the narrative (those who have the power to create and change language as the Elves do). The valuing of those languages - and in turn the natural languages that inform them - can further be understood as an implicit valuing of those natural cultures more broadly.  		56  Chapter 4: Conclusion  My own interest in constructed languages stems from the growing understanding within popular culture of the tools for world-building, and their importance in creating narratives. Language is recognized as an important tool for expression in fiction, but I feel that its use as a tool for representing and embodying invented cultures is too often overlooked. Tolkien’s languages represent a pivotal moment in the history of constructed languages, as his use of language was not only widely circulated but also very detailed. While Tolkien was by no means the first to use constructed language for this purpose, he remains a staple among those who study world-building and constructed languages as his languages were so thoroughly planned and carefully developed over his lifetime. With television and film productions becoming more invested in creating realistic fictional worlds, the demand for people to create languages for those worlds has increased. It is imperative that those who work on constructing new languages be aware of the cultural impact of their work. Examining the positive and negative impacts in the work of a prominent practitioner of constructing languages like J.R.R. Tolkien, we can ensure a more nuanced and thoughtful process of language construction that is mindful of the ways fictional cultures represent natural ones. To accomplish this, it is important to reflect not only on how constructed languages have been conceived, but also how they are understood by their audiences. All conlangs must convey cultural information about their speakers, and this can imitate existing linguistic and cultural patterns in the world. The sound symbolism of Tolkien’s languages is related to the importance he places on the “phonetic fitness” of sounds. Such factors are important for conlangers to consider because they create a system wherein certain sounds have more value than others, and thus also certain languages are deemed phonologically better than others. In incorporating 		57  sounds from certain natural languages into Middle-earth cultures, Tolkien creates a hierarchy of value amongst not only the cultures in the text, but those natural languages and cultures which influenced their construction. This happens through the association of the natural languages and cultures that are closely linguistically paralleled in Middle-earth. Tolkien associates privileged natural languages with the “linguistically superior” cultures within the narrative (those who have the power to create and change language as the Elves do). It is easy to see how the valuing of those languages - and in turn the natural languages that inform them - can further be understood as an implicit valuing of those natural cultures more broadly. Dr. Bettina Beinhoff presented a study at the sixth Language Creation Conference in 2015, entitled “Attitudes Towards Conlangs and Natlangs- a Comparison.” Her informal study had one hundred and nine participants surveyed about their opinions of twenty-four different languages. Participants were asked to assign traits to the languages based on sounds, and to declare whether they found the languages to be pleasant, friendly, educated, peaceful/aggressive, familiar/strange, or natural/artificial. Beinhoff found that there were trends in the responses to these questions around traits, including that languages found to be the least familiar sounding (namely Hawaiian and Inupiatun) were also found to seem the least educated sounding. Dothraki was found to be both unfamiliar, unpleasant, and unnatural sounding by most respondents. Languages that were found to be more familiar were also seen as more pleasant and natural, including English, French, and Spanish. French and Spanish also ranked highly in terms of how educated respondents felt they sounded. Beinhoff also remarked that speakers who found that Dothraki sounded like Arabic were less likely to report it being pleasant or natural sounding. Although this study lacked formal rigor, it does reveal critical information about how constructed languages are received by their audiences. Mark Okrand, the creator of Klingon, was well aware 		58  of the problems of making a constructed language too familiar to an existing natural language. In a video by Academy Originals (the same “Academy” as behind the Oscars) the conlangers behind popular film projects were interviewed and asked to describe their own creation process. Okrand discusses how early on in his work on Star Trek, he realized that he had a responsibility to his audience. During the interview, he states that “in making up Klingon, I tried very, very hard to not make it resemble anything because Klingons at the time, all we knew about them was that they were mean, horrible, awful people. I didn’t want somebody to come up to me afterwards and say ‘how come you made the Klingon language like my language? What’s that saying about me?’” Both of these examples highlight the challenges language creators face. As the pioneer of modern conlangs, Tolkien set the bar high for the level of detail and attention to authentic world-building in his languages and constructed cultures. That said, the impacts of where his languages echo ethnocentric biases can still be seen today. There are no fantasy writers today who can say they are working entirely outside of Tolkien’s influence; the impact of The Lord of the Rings has permeated much of the genre, and the conlangs are no different. Close examination of seminal works such as Tolkien’s remain important, as these questions of cultural representation in literature and film are critical to challenging the institutional and often damaging history of media representation. Beinhoff’s study demonstrates that audiences associate particular characteristics with specific sounds and languages. If an author wishes to call on those associations, how best can they do this without reinforcing cultural stereotypes of existing languages? Could personal linguistic biases be mitigated in these instances by working collaboratively to create languages for media? Using Tolkien’s work as a model for its attention to linguistic detail in fiction, and for its enduring impact on audiences and their perception of the 		59  culture through sounds, we have a solid base on which to examine these questions, and aim for a best practice of language creation.                                         		60  References:  Academy Originals. “Credited As: ConLangers (How to Create a Language).” YouTube. 17 Jan. 2016. Web. 20 Sep. 2017.  Adams, Michael. From Elvish to Klingon: Exploring Invented Languages. Oxford University Press, 2011. Allott, Robin. "Sound Symbolism." In Language in the Wurm Glaciation. Ed. Udo Figge. Bochum: Brockmeyer, 1995. 15-38. Ebook. Beinhoff, Bettina. “Attitudes towards Conlangs and Natlangs – a Comparison.” Language Creation Society Conference, 25 April 2015, Horsham, UK. Conference Presentation. Besnier, N. "Language and Affect." Annual Review of Anthropology, vol. 19, 1990. doi:10.1146/annurev.anthro.19.1.419. Borsley, Robert D. “On the Nature of Welsh VSO Clauses.” Lingua, 116.4 (2006) 462–490. doi:10.1016/j.lingua.2005.02.004.  Carpenter, Humphrey. The Inklings: C. S. Lewis, J. R. R. Tolkien, Charles Williams, and their Friends. G. Allen & Unwin, London, 1978. Cheyne, Ria. “Created Languages in Science Fiction.” Science Fiction Studies 35.3 (2008): 386–403. Destruel, Matt. "Shekh Ma Shieraki Anni: Typology of a Fictional Language Created for Artistic Purposes." Lingua Frankly 2.1 (2014). Web. 19 Apr. 2015.  Garth, John. "English and Welsh." J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia, Scholarship and Critical Assessment. Ed. Michael D.C. Drout. New York: Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, 2013. 162-3. Print. 		61  Goddard, Cliff, and Anna Wierzbicka. Words and Meanings: Lexical Semantics across Domains, Languages, and Cultures. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2014. Oxford Scholarship Online. Jan. 2014. Web. 20 Nov. 2016. Grotta, Daniel. J.R.R. Tolkien: Architect of Middle Earth: A Biography. Running Press, Philadelphia, 1976.  Hannahs, S. J. The Phonology of Welsh. Oxford: OUP, 2013. Ebook.  Hemmi, Yoko. "Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings and His Concept of Native Language: Sindarin and British-Welsh." Tolkien Studies 7.1 (2010): 147-74. Web. 12 Oct. 2016. Hinton, Leanne, Johanna Nichols, and John J. Ohala. Sound Symbolism, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1995. Print Honegger, Thomas. "The Rohirrim: 'Anglo-Saxons on Horseback?' An Inquiry into Tolkien's Use of Sources." Tolkien and the Study of His Sources: Critical Essays. Ed. Jason Fisher. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2011. 116-32. Print. Hostetter, Carl F. "Languages Invented by Tolkien." J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia, Scholarship and Critical Assessment. Ed. Michael D.C. Drout. New York: Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, 2013. 332-43. Print. Jespersen, Otto. Language: Its Nature, Development and Origin. London: G. Allen & Unwin, 1922. Web. Jones, Glyn. “The Distinctive Vowels and Consonants of Welsh,” Welsh Phonology: Selected Readings, Cardiff UP, 1984. 40-64. Web. Lyons, John. Semantics. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1977. Web. 		62  Matthews, P. H. "Phonotactics." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Linguistics. Oxford UP, 2014. Meyers, Walter E. Aliens and Linguists: Language Study and Science Fiction. University of Georgia Press, Athens, 1980. Print. Milani, Matteo. "An Interview with Paul Frommer, Alien Language Creator for Avatar". USO project (2009). Web.  Nuckolls, Janis B. "The Case for Sound Symbolism." Annual Review of Anthropology 28 (1999): 225-52. Web. Okrent, Arika. In the Land of Invented Languages: A Celebration of Linguistic Creativity, Madness, and Genius. Spiegel & Grau Trade Paperbacks, 2010. Print.  Peterson, David J. The Art of Language Invention: from Horse-Lords to Dark Elves, the Words behind World-Building. New York: Penguin Books, 2015. Print. Phelpstead, Carl. 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Cary, US: Oxford University Press (US), 1998. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 21 January 2017. Shippey, T. A. The Road to Middle-Earth. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1983. Print. Sidhu, David M., and Penny M. Pexman. "What’s in a Name? Sound Symbolism and Gender in First Names." PLOS One 10.5 (2015): 1-22. PLOS Online. Web. 22 Nov. 2016. Silverstein, Michael. 1979. Language Structure and Linguistic Ideology. In The Elements: A Parasession on Linguistic Units and Levels, ed. Paul R. Clyne, William F. Hanks, and Carol L. Hofbauer, pp. 193-247. Chicago: Chicago Linguistic Society. Smith, Ross. "Fitting Sense to Sound: Linguistic Aesthetics and Phonosemantics in the Work of J.R.R. Tolkien." Tolkien Studies 3.1 (2006): 1-20. Print.  Smith, Ross, and Thomas Honegger. Inside Language: Linguistic and Aesthetic Theory in Tolkien. Zollikofen, Switzerland: Walking Tree, 2007. Print. Tolkien, J.R.R. The Fellowship of the Ring. New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1994. Print. —. The Two Towers. 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