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Mannish

Revision as of 10:09, 29 December 2008 by 94.65.203.67 (Talk)

A term to refer to the languages of Men, as opposed to the Elvish tongues, or those of the other races of Middle-earth. By far the most prominent Mannish languageis Westron, also called the Common Speech.

Translation

Tolkien used real-life languages and names to present Mannish. The most known example is Westron, which is always replaced with modern English.

This logic went one step further by also presenting all languages akin to Westron in languages related to English, so that their "understandability" by the protagonists is simulated to the English reader. Since English belongs to the germanic family, most names Tolkien uses are germanic (Norse, Gothic etc) with some celtic exceptions.

  • Rohirric, the language of the Rohirrim was replaced by Anglo-Saxon, as Rohirric is an archaic relative of Westron, much as Anglo-Saxon is an archaic relative of English;
  • The tongue of Dale (from which came the names of the Dwarves of Durin's Folk), was translated into Old Norse, a language related to Anglo-Saxon and modern English as Dalish was related to Rohirric and Westron;
  • The hobbit names of the Stoors, Buckland as well as some Bree-land names are Celtic;
  • Few "heathen" names related to Rhovanion (such as "Vidugavia") are Gothic, indicating a relationship to Dalish but not recognisable by Westron.

Mannish languages unrelated to Westron that sounded alien to the protagonists, were left in their "genuine" form.

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