(J.R.R. Tolkien > Arda > languages > Sindarin)

I. NUMBER

Sindarin nouns can be in the following number:

  • singular
  • plural
  • Class Plural (used for natural classes or groups of things)
  • the old Dual Number (used for natural pairs, only)
Normal plurals
Normal plurals use vowel affection (umlaut or S. prestanneth) to be formed. This is akin to English, where the plural of "man" is "men". Herefollows a chart of the standard mutation of vowels to form plurals in Sindarin:

Non-finals

a > e
e.g. aran > erain

e = e
e.g. edhel > edhil

i = i
e.g. ithron > ithryn

o > e
e.g. onod > enyd

u > y
e.g. tulus > tylys

y = y
e.g. ylfdan > ylfdain

au > oe

ae = ae

ai = ai

ei = ei

ui = ui

Finals

a > ai
e.g. tal > tail

ar > er
e.g. narn > nenr

ang > eng
e.g. fang > feng

alph > eilph
e.g. alph > eilph

e > i
e.g. edhel > edhil

é > í
e.g. têw > tîw

ie > i
e.g. Miniel > Minil

i = i
e.g. sigil = sigil

o > y
e.g. orch > yrch

ó > ý
e.g. bór > býr

io > y
e.g. thalion > thelyn

u > y
e.g. tulus > tylys

ú > ui
e.g. dûr > duir

y = y
e.g. ylf = ylf

ý = ý
e.g. mýl = mýl

au > oe
e.g. naug > noeg

ae = ae
e.g. aew = aew

ai = ai

ei = ei

ui = ui
e.g. luin = luin

Class Plural

The class plural is split into two types:
  1. Collective: -ath
    e.g. elenath "star" < êl, elin
    ennorath "middle lands"
    sammath "chambers"

    Tolkien explains it thus:

    "the suffix -ath (originally a collective noun-suffix) was used as a group plural, embracing all things of the same name, or those associated in some special arrangement.

    It was a collective or group suffix, and the nouns so formed were originall singulars. But they were later treated as plurals, especially when applied to people(s)... e.g. Perinannath the Hobbit-folk, as distinguished from periain, an indefinite number of 'halflings'." (Gilson, p. 100)

  2. General:
    -rim e.g. "people"
    -hoth e.g. (pejor.) "folk"

    "The 'correct' plural of onod was enyd, or general plural onodrim though ened might be a form used in Gondor.

    Another words used for this purpose if hoth "host, horde", as in gaurhoth 'werewolves', and Glamhoth 'din-hode' = 'Orcs'" (Gilson pp. 100-101)

    Though the intial h of the suffix -hoth was sometimes dropped, e.g. Lossoth "the Snowmen" < loss-hoth.
There was a also special plural -in, that appears to be used for groups of things, e.g. êl > elin "stars".

II. DERIVATION

The derivation of Sindarin nouns can sometimes be seen from the prefixes or suffixes attached to them. Indeed this can be a highly effective way of constructive small phrases (e.g. lotheg "the little flower"):

Augmentative: -on
e.g. sirion "great river"

Diminutive: -eg
e.g. nogotheg "dwarflet"

Pejorative: ú
e.g. úmarth "ill-fate"

Negative:
pen-, e.g. penadar "fatherless"
al-, e.g. alfirin "immortal"

III. DECLENSION

Sindarin nouns are divided into common nouns and proper nouns. Bother can act as subjects (nominative case), attributes/predicates, the direct object (acc.), the indirect object (dat.), the object of another noun (gen.), the object introduced by a prepositive, or in the vocative case, etc..

However, unlike Quenya with its highly-inflected word-endings, Sindarin nouns do not normally decline based on case. This is normally indicated by two means:

Declension by word order

For example a noun can function as a genitive without changing form:
e.g. Condir i Drann "Mayor of the Shire"
Ennyn Durin "Doors of Durin"
fennas nogothrim "Gateway of dwarf-folk"

The accusative and dative can both be expressed by an uninflected Sindarin noun. The indirect object (dat.) follows the direct object: e.g. Ónen i-Estel Edain "I gave Hope to the Men".

Declension by preposition
Cases can be expressed by prepositions, e.g. o Eregion "from Hollin", na-chaered "to a remote distance".
There are a few exceptions: "-ion is preserved in a few compound names, such as Orgilion ... and Dorthonion 'Land of Pines'. There is also a suffix -a on the second word in the phrase Dagnir Glaurunga 'Glaurung's Bane'" (Gilson, p. 101)


N.B. Please excuse the brevity of this. I only realised today that out of my series of w/us, this one was missing…however I did not have the text. The text above is my quickly-cobbled-together attempt at a reconstruction based on information I deem to be missing.

References/sources:

  • Derdzinski, Ryszard, Summary of Sindarin Grammar, at http://www.elvish.org/gwaith/sindarin_intro.htm
  • Fauskanger, Helge K., Sindarin the Noble Tongue, at http://www.uib.no/People/hnohf/sindarin.htm
  • -, proposed Sindarin Course, [avail. Online, but URL unknown at present]
  • Gilson, Christopher, Gnomish is Sindarin in Flieger & Hostetter, Tolkien's Legendarium (Greenwood Press, 2000; ISBN: 0-313-30530-7)
  • own notes

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.