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2.9 out of 5 stars
The Languages of Tolkien's Middle­earth
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 24, 2003
I bought this book before checking it out much. Now that I've got it I've been looking on the internet, and have heard, to my dismay, that this book is incorrect and out-of-date.
Therefore, I no longer use it for a guide on Elvish, which was what I was (and still am) looking for. Instead, I use the dictionary to increase my somewhat small vocabulary of words, in Elvish and Tolkien's other languages.
The conlusion: I would recommend buying this book with another book, like An Introduction to Elvish (that's not the full name, just type in "An Introduction to Elvish" in the Amazon.com search field and you'll get it)...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 28, 2004
This is a thorough-going vocabulary list and (morphological) analysis of Tolkien's LOTR languages. A fun resource for fans, but also rather fascinating for anybody into conlangs (constructed languages), and anybody researching LOTR purely as a pop culture phenomenon. I was a little disappointed in the presentation of the script (the page is a bit blurry), and would have loved a little more info on the process of creation. But still just a neat book!
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on July 10, 2003
This author tried, but I'm afraid the book is now somewhat obsolete with the publication of new linguistic information in Christopher Tolkien's editions.
I faithfully copied down the tengwar (in my rather bad handwriting) and the Quenya conjugations, though I have no conception if the latter are really right. I noticed that mutation (the change of an initial letter, as Balrog -- i Malrog) isn't ever mentioned, that I could find. In addition, of Elvish languages, only Quenya and Sindarin really get mentioned -- again, some of the more obscure languages were unknown to the public until the History of Middle-Earth was published. Interesting issues, such as the existence of Exilic Noldorin (I'm a believer in this!) weren't available yet for the author to discuss.
I was interested to find that the language of Rohan is really Anglo-Saxon letter for letter.
Because it's dated, this is hard to recommend, though one has to appreciate the work the author did.
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This book contained some inaccuracies when it was published 23 years ago, and they have been fruitful and multiplied. In the years following its publication, almost all of the current information regarding Elvish has been released after that date (always excepting LOTR and The Hobbit). The Silmarillion, the History of Middle Earth (All 12 Volumes), and most of Tolkien's letters were published in the years following the publication of LoTME. Thus whatever value this book possessed with regards to Elvish at publication is virtually voided now. There is a small degree of merit in the categories of Dwarvish and Hobbit-tongue, but it is almost solely in the area of names and not linguistics.
There are no comprehensive books on the Eldalambe (Tongues of the Elves) in publication...
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This book contained some inaccuracies when it was published 23 years ago, and they have been fruitful and multiplied. In the years following its publication, almost all of the current information regarding Elvish has been released after that date (always excepting LOTR and The Hobbit). The Silmarillion, the History of Middle Earth (All 12 Volumes), and most of Tolkien's letters were published in the years following the publication of LoTME. Thus whatever value this book possessed with regards to Elvish at publication is virtually voided now. There is a small degree of merit in the categories of Dwarvish and Hobbit-tongue, but it is almost solely in the area of names and not linguistics.
There are no comprehensive books on the Eldalambe (Tongues of the Elves) in publication...
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on August 3, 1999
I discovered this book back in 1980, when it first came out. At the time it was without a doubt the best source I had ever seen. Unfortunately the tiny book was poorly constructed and eventually deteriorated from over-use. I am thrilled to see it still available here, as most conventional locations return querries with blank stares. The Histories books by Christopher Tolkien may be more comprehensive, but the information is handy in Noel's text. Unless I encounter a high elf, the translations are adequate for most needs and more convenient than lugging around a ten volume hard bound set. Last I would note that Ms. Noel gave us a lexicon for fantasy long before the current craze (i.e. Klingon language resources) and thus was way ahead of her time. An old favorite...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on June 4, 2003
The languages of Tolkien's Middle Earth is a great book. I was particularly impressed with the Elvish to English and English to Elvish dictionaries. It tells a lot about Tolkien and the early formations of his ideas. It's a worthwhile book.
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on March 11, 2004
I know, you'll hear it's inaccurate, not up to date, and not "true" to Tolkien's works. I'm sure there are some mistakes in this book, but overall I think it's excellent.
If you care enough that a few Elvish words are wrong, don't buy it, but if you want to learn to speak and write Elvish, if you like challanges, of you love Tolkien, and you want to have fun, by all means; buy this book. By the time I got home from the bookstore, I had conjugated 4 verbs into past, present, future, subjunctive, and imperitive, and was making a vocabulary list to study. I had a wonderful time, and hope that all the buyers of this book will enjoy it to it's fullest!
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on November 8, 1999
My God! This book is horrendously inaccurate. The text is so incoherent and vague I can hardy understand what the author is trying to say. One minute, she is talking about some so-called "similarity" between an ancient Greek or Roman god and something from Tolkien, and the next she states there is nothing the same about them except for there appearance. It utterly confuses even the most dillegent and devout fan when she begins to speak of grammar and sentence structure; in fact, the only clear thing in this wildly overpriced book is the rune and tengwar charts she copied out of LOTR!
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on August 28, 1999
This book is very outdated and not entirely accurate. It really contains only a fraction of the available Tolkien language material, and there are some languages that nobody even knew existed when this work was published.The chapters about Dwarven names and those of the Hobbits and Rohhirim are good, though. As for the rest of the book, if you want up to date, accurate info, I advise you to go to Helge Fauskanger's excellent web-page, Ardalmbion [online] the biggest and best resource on the net or in print.
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