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Finnish

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Finnish is a Scandinavian language, and one of the few non-Indoeuropean languages spoken in Europe.

The phonotactics of the Finnish language excited J.R.R. Tolkien which he likened to "bottles of an amazing wine of a kind and flavour never tasted before" that "quite intoxicated" him.[1]

It became was the inspiration for the Elvish language which Tolkien named Qenya (later Quenya), a language designed to emulate the beauty evoked by Finnish. Other than in the field of phonotactics, a small part of the Quenya vocabulary was probably directly inspired by Finnish words, cf. Q. lapse "baby", perhaps from F. lapsi "child".

References

  1. J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 163, (dated 7 June 1955)

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