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Common Telerin

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Common Telerin is the primordial tongue of the Teleri or Lindar clan of the Elves. It is the common ancestor of Valinorean Telerin the vernacular Elvish languages of the Westlands (the Sindarin dialects, and some of the Silvan Elvish like Nandorin).



It descended from Primitive Quendian, the original language of all Quendi, or Elves, but split off Common Eldarin early, at some time during the Great Journey.

Its descendants are the language of the Teleri of Valinor Telerin, as well as all the languages of Beleriand of the First Age, like Sindarin, and the various Nandorin languages.


One major Telerin change was that where Primitive Quendian used 'KW', Telerin had evolved it into 'P'.

Another significant change was the simplification of palatal 'J' into the vowel 'I'.

Another yet characteristic see in the Telerin languages was the loss of an unaccented pre-stress vowel, for example PQ turúmbê becomes t'rumbê and *berektâ becomes *b'rektâ.

Other versions of the legendarium

The model of Common Telerin belongs to a newer part of Tolkien's writings. In his personal early unpublished writings like The Etymologies, the only languages which possess the qualities of the Telerin languages are Old Noldorin and Noldorin.

The other languages of the Great Lands like Doriathrin, Ilkorin etc don't; for example, they had retained the Primitive 'KW' (cf. Ilkorin cwess and Doriathrin cwindor)

Fans who believe that those early languages are not obsolete in the later continuity, interpret them as dialects of Sindarin and/or Telerin languages in their minds. In that case those "anomalous" words that don't fit Telerin, are "updated" in Neo-Sindarin (for example *pess and *pindor)

See also