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Limpë by Vinyatar

Limpë was a magical elven drink that appeared in The Book of Lost Tales, an early form of Tolkien's legendarium.

History[edit | edit source]

Limpë could heal longing caused by Tinfang's music. Only queen Meril could give it. Drinking it was dangerous for a mortal Man, as Ilúvatar made his Children different, and drinking limpë would erase his old desires but awake new ones. Sometimes, after teaching and examination of the heart, it was given to children from the Cottage of Lost Play, but giving it to an adult was different and the person would suffer. It gave youth, but the man had to die anyway.[1]

Because Noldoli had not had it yet during their flight from Valinor, the evil soon ensnared them.[2] Limpë was given to elves by Tulkas during their great expedition to save enslaved Gnomes.[3]

Limpë (maybe given by Eärendel) made a man named Ingwë, king of Luthany, immortal.[3]

In the story of Eriol[edit | edit source]

Eriol learnt about limpë from Vairë. When he went for it to Meril-i-Turinqi, she refused to give him it immediately, as first he had to learn more. She told him about the chaining of Melko[1] and the coming of the elves.[4] Later Lindo explained that Eriol had to visit Gilfanon in his House of the Hundred Chimneys.[5] As the last condition, Gilfanon bid Eriol to write down all the tales that he had heard in Tol Eressëa. Then Eriol drank limpë. He was forever young and married Naimi, an elf, but finally he died in Tavrobel, homesick.[3]

Etymology[edit | edit source]

The name limpë was Qenya for "drink of the fairies", and it came from the root LIPI, related with "drip, drop". Its Gnomish cognate was limp or limpelis.[6] However, later Gnomish forms were limfa or limfelis.[7] In Old English líp.[3][8]

See also[edit | edit source]