From Tolkien Gateway
This article is about the languages. For the people, see Pre-Númenóreans.

Pre-Númenórean is a term used to refer to several Mannish tongues and dialects in Gondor that predate Númenórean settlement. Its speakers were the Pre-Númenóreans, including the folk of Agar,[1] the Drúedain, the Men of Dunharrow, the Dunlendings[2] and several other inhabitants of Lamedon and Anórien.[3]

Roots[edit | edit source]

Pre-Númenórean languages derived from the settlers who were separated relatives of the House of Haleth. Their members stayed back in Eriador while the Edain migrated to the west during the First Age.[4]

Their language was foreign to Taliska, the language of the other two tribes, and as a result, the evolved languages became distinctly alien from Adûnaic,[2] being closer to the tongue of the Haladin.[4]

Survival[edit | edit source]

The only pre-Númenórean tongues that survived into the Third Age as active languages were Dunlendish[2] and the Drúedain tongue.[5] For the former, it was the result of a long enmity and a reluctance to speak Westron,[2][6] while in the latter case it was isolation.[4]

The pre-Númenórean tongue of the Ethir and Pelargir merged with Adûnaic into Westron.[2] Under the Númenórean dominion, the language only survived in placenames and personal names, such as Eilenach[3], Rimmon and Forlong.[2]


Languages and scripts in Tolkien's works
Elvish Angerthas (Angerthas Daeron) · Avarin · Cirth (Certhas Daeron) · Common Eldarin · Mátengwië · Moon-letters · Nandorin · Primitive Quendian · Quenya (Exilic · Valinorean · Vanyarin) · Sarati · Silvan Elvish · Sindarin (Doriathrin · Falathrin · Númenórean · Mithrimin · Old) · Telerin (Common) · Tengwar
Mannish Adûnaic · Dalish · Drúadan · Dunlendish · Halethian · Northern Mannish · Pre-Númenórean · Rohanese · Taliska · Westron (Bucklandish · Hobbitish · Stoorish)
Dwarvish Angerthas (Erebor · Moria) · Aulëan · Iglishmêk · Khuzdul
Other Black Speech · Old Entish · Orkish · Valarin · Warg-language
Earlier legendarium Gnomish · Gnomic Letters · Gondolinic Runes · Ilkorin · Keladian · Noldorin (Kornoldorin) · Melkian · Oromëan · Qenya · Valmaric script
Outside the legendarium Animalic · Arktik · Goblin Alphabet · Mágol · Naffarin · New English Alphabet · Nevbosh · Privata Kodo Skauta
Real-world Celtic · English (Old · Middle · AB) · Finnish · Germanic · Gothic · Hebrew · Runic alphabet · Welsh
"A Secret Vice" (book) · "The Lhammas" · "The Tree of Tongues" · Sub-creation