"The Enshadowed Wood", Rokbeigalmki, and Proto-Elven
|From:||Steg Belsky <draqonfayir@...>|
|Date:||Tuesday, June 12, 2001, 1:44|
Doing that translation exercise with the word "Hell" in it got me
thinking about what would be the closest Rokbeigalmki equivalent to such
a concept, since their Afterlife belief is nothing like it.
As i said when i translated it:
Aurdzasht-a oolu-Daraflep-ad = 'the Darkened Forest', the closest the
Rokbeigalm have to a conception of a "Hell". The Darkened Forest is the
memories of the oldest elves among them, who remember the servants of
Morgoth that used to prowl the woods around Cuivienen.
So i've settled on the word _aurdzasht_ for "forest"... it's related to
_aurez_ "wood" and _gores_ "tree"... i'm not sure what the element
_d...asht_ represents... possibly something like _daasht_, "surround"?
Yep, that sounds like a good word. But now i've realized that
_daraflep-ad_ "darkened" wouldn't have the same malevolent connotations
to the Rokbeigalm that it has to me - their cultural enmeshing with the
elves has weakened their typical human 'fear of the dark'.
Trying to figure out a Rokbeigalmki name for the elves among them's
deepest nightmare, i suddenly realized - they would just borrow whatever
term the Elves were using for it!
This is the passage in the Silmarillion that talks about it:
"Yet many of the Quendi were filled with dread at his [Oromë's] coming;
and this was the doing of Melkor. For by after-knowledge the wise
declare that Melkor, ever watchful, was first aware of the awakening of
the Quendi, and sent shadows and evil spirits to spy upon them and waylay
them. So it came to pass, some years ere the coming of Oromë, that if
any of the Elves strayed far abroad, alone or few together, they would
often vanish, and never return; and the Quendi said that the Hunter had
caught them, and they were afraid. And indeed the most ancient songs of
the Elves, of which echoes are remembered still in the West, tell of the
shadow-shapes that walked in the hills above Cuiviénen, or would pass
suddenly over the stars; and of the dark Rider upon his wild horse that
pursued those that wandered to take them and devour them. Now Melkor
greatly hated and feared the riding of Oromë, and either he sent indeed
his dark servants as riders, or he set lying whispers abroad, for the
purpose that the Quendi should shun Oromë, if ever they should meet."
(ch.3, pp.49-50, ballantine gold-colored cover edition)
And after a short paragraph describing Oromë's (possibly _Auráún_ in
Rokb.) initial encounter with the Quendi, the text goes on to describe
how according to "the wise of Eressëa" those elves who were taken by
Melkor/Morgoth were corrupted and tortured into the ancestors of the
Orcs. The Rokbeigalm also know this - the leader of the Avarin
contingent among the Elven Rokbeigalmkidhm, Shalhévet, was herself
captured by 'the dark Rider upon his wild horse' and barely escaped with
her life; her brother Térabaj wasn't so lucky. (Their other sister,
Jekifíí, reached Valinor, and their other brother Alaklín became one of
the Sindar in Beleriand).
So now i'm thinking that the Elves would have named this memory "The
Forest of Shadows", or something similar. I have a few txt files on my
computer of lists of different Tolkienian languages' roots, and i found
the following possibilities:
phuy- = deep shadow
tawar- = wood, forest
tauree = great wood, forest (this entry has "tawar-" in braces after
spar- = to hunt, pursue
Does anyone here have enough knowledge of Proto-Elven to come up with a
plausable term for something like "The Forest of Hunter-Shadows"? Or
something else, if you have a better idea?
Hmm... that gives me the idea that Rokbeigalmki would have two words for
'shadow' - one positive/neutral, like the shade that you go into when
it's hot outside, and the other negative, the spooky shadow where
dangerous things lurk.
"...never forget, my son, that you are not a Northlander..."
~ from Gamnoosólg's will to his son Urgámn, in Rivendell