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Discussing: Place naming conventions

Place naming conventions

I am writing a story set in the Second Age, and I need to come up with names for a few towns. The inhabitants are descendants of the House of Hador, so I assume their language would be close to Adûnic, with many Sindarin words. Please correct me if this is wrong.

I am looking for names of towns along the Baranduin River, that would be way south of where the Shire stands in the Third Age.

Please comment on what I have come up with so far:

At the mouth of the river Ethir Baranduin could be correct, if uninspired. For midway along the river, given that there were deep forests in the second age, I thought of something on the order of Gwath Athrad (shadowed crossing) or Gwath raw (shadowed riverbank)

I am working from ignorance and sindarin word lists. I have no idea if my word order is correct. All suggestions gratefully received. Help!

Lyllyn

 

 

Re: Place naming conventions

At the mouth of the river Ethir Baranduin could be correct, if uninspired.

Actually, due to the word order, Baranduin would be lenited to Varanduin.

I thought of something on the order of Gwath Athrad (shadowed crossing) or Gwath raw (shadowed riverbank).

In Sindarin, the adjective generally follows the word it modifies and is lenited in this position; I would suggest using gwathren or gwathui rather than gwath, which is a noun. Alternatively, you could also use hall. So what you end up with is something like Athrad (or Raw) Wathren, Athrad Wathui, or Athrad Chall.

Cheers,
Aerlinnel

 

 

Re: Place naming conventions

Thanks Aerlinnel, this is exactly the kind of help I needed.

I may ask for some help with a few more names of towns on the river, I'll try to find the base idea first, unless you have more suggestions now?

Thanks, thanks, thanks!
Lyllyn

 

 

Re: Place naming conventions

unless you have more suggestions now?

Just let me know what kind of names - i.e. what sort of towns you're thinking of, and what connotation each might have for a speaker of Sindarin (Shadowed Crossing, for example, paints a pretty clearly dark and/or dismal picture).

Can also do Quenya, BTW, if you want.

-Aerlinnel

 

 

Re: Place naming conventions

Shadowed Crossing, for example, paints a pretty clearly dark and/or dismal picture

I actually was trying to hit something like 'shady crossing' since there is a forest around it. If the translation is too grim sounding, I'll rethink it.

I need one fair size town on the river, one which traders will stop at, and which would be a step up from the smaller settlements. I need a few small settlements on the river, at least one of which could even be at or near Sarn Ford and I'd just use that name. Finally, I need the settlement near the river's outlet, and perhaps a second one nearby. I have the one name, the second might be a more cheerful one, or one suggesting that the settlers were hoping for a good living from the sea.

If anything comes to mind, I'd love to hear it.

Lyllyn

 

 

Re: Place naming conventions

You could also play around with Adunaic a bit, based on Ardalambion. There's a word list and some grammar.

 

 

Re: Place naming conventions

I'm looking to find a name for a place for traders from the various races to exchange goods. It would be Second Age, on the Great East Road or Dwarf Road which runs from just below Erebor, through Greenwood and over the Baranduin toward Mithlond and the gulf of Lune. It would be located near where the Brandywine bridge stands at the end of the Third Age.

I'm assuming it would have an elvish name, as the Men living nearby would use elvish words.

Working from a Sindarin word list, but knowing no grammar, I have put together a few possibilities that I hope someone will help me refine:

approach to the west - anglenna annûn
gateway to the sea - fennas aear

or even Wanderer's camp - Randir echad

On a different non-place subject, I'm also looking to name a small sailboat. My preliminaries:
Little fish - lim tithen
Seed of the West - eredh annûn or eredh dûn
Ocean butterfly - gwilwileth gaearon

Thanks for any help with this.
Lyllyn

 

 

Re: Place naming conventions

Suilad Lyllyn,
You have some good suggestions. Here’s one try at the Sindarin grammar ‘stuff’

As was mentioned above, one of Sindarin’s peculiarities is the lenition (or ‘soft mutation’) of certain consonants at the beginning of an adjective that follows the noun it modifies (which is the normal position for such an adjective.)

approach to the west - anglenna annûn
Also perhaps: Anglenna Na Dhûn (The ‘d’ in Dûn would lenit to ‘dh’ here with or without the pronoun _na_ - ‘to’.)
Maybe also _Anglenna Annui_ ‘Western Approach’

gateway to the sea - fennas aear
I think the preferred form of ‘sea’ is _gaear_ . When ‘g’ is lenited, it disappears entirely, and is usually replaced by an apostrophe. So: _Fennas ‘Aear_ or perhaps: _Fennas Na ‘Aear_ or even _Annon Na ‘Aear_ .

Wanderer's camp - Randir echad
Suggestions either with or without the genitive pronoun: _Echad en Randir_ or _Echad Randir_

Little fish - lim tithen
_Limeg_
The suffix _-eg_ is a ‘diminutive’ ending; hence, _Limeg_ would mean ‘Little Fish’
The two-word alternative would need lenition – t>th producing _Lim Thithin_ unless you reverse the order - which can occasionally be done for emphasis - resulting in _Tithen Lim_.

Seed of the West - eredh annûn or eredh dûn
I would go with _Eredh Annún_ here as the other suggestion would run into lenition - d>dh resulting in _Eredh Dhûn_, perhaps a bit awkward to pronounce. Reversing the order might change the meaning too much here.

Ocean butterfly - gwilwileth gaearon
Again, that pesky lenition would be necessary – but resulting in a beautiful name: _Gwilwileth ‘Aearon_ or how about _Gaeron ‘Wilwileth_?

Hope this was helpful,
Ithildin

 

 

Re: Place naming conventions

I actually was trying to hit something like 'shady crossing' since there is a forest around it. If the translation is too grim sounding, I'll rethink it.
_Lumren_ means 'shady' so how about _Athrad Lumren_ ?

 

 

Re: Place naming conventions

Hope this was helpful,
Extremely helpful, thanks so much, Ithildin.

but resulting in a beautiful name: _Gwilwileth ‘Aearon_ or how about _Gaeron ‘Wilwileth_?
I did have a fondness for this one because Gwilwileth is so lovely to pronounce. I have no idea if Elves would name a ship that, but based on 'foamflower' I figured I could get away with a lot.

And I'm so glad Hiswelókë has the word lists, without them I couldn't even start.

Ooops, just saw your second suggestion on shady. That would sound less grim.

Hannon le. (correct me if wrong )

Lyllyn

 

 

Re: Place naming conventions

After refreshing my (quite porous) memory on some things, here are a few corrections and additional suggestions. I hope I got it right this time!

The singular genitival article _e,en_ seems to trigger the mixed mutation and it would seem to be more proper to use the article when the second word of the construction is not a proper name.

gateway to the sea - fennas aear
instead of _Fennas ‘Aear_ I would suggest:
_Fennas e-Gaear _ Gateway of (the) Sea

Seed of the West - eredh annûn or eredh dûn
Instead of _Eredh Dhûn_ I would suggest:
_Eredh e-Dûn_ Seed of (the) West

Instead of _Eredh Annún_I would suggest:
_Eredh en-Annûn_ Seed of (the) West

Ocean butterfly - gwilwileth gaearon
Instead of _Gwilwileth ‘Aearon_ I would suggest:
_Gwilwileth e-Gaearon_ Butterfly of (the) Ocean
If referred to by the owner as “the Butterfly” it would be take the lenited form
_i ‘Wilwilith_.

An additional suggestion for the sailboat might be:
_Heledir_ ‘Kingfisher’ (_i Cheledir_ ‘the Kingfisher’)

As far as I know, I think the other constructions offered can stand as they are.

Also, on the _gwathren, gwathui_ vs. _lumren_, _hall_ issue I second Aerlinnel’s comments. From what I can tell I believe the words based on [GWATH] would have a darker meaning than the others.
_Lumren_, from [LUM] being one of the elements in _Hithlum_ (the other being _hith_ ‘mist,fog’) seems to me to mean a more natural sort of shadow.
Depending on what meaning you are looking for, Aerlinnel’s suggestion of _Athrad Chall_ is also a good possibility; _hall_ is glossed as ‘veiled, hidden, shadowed, shady’ and is from the root [SKAL] glossed as ‘screen, hide (from light)’. The name _Haldir_ also comes from the same root, meaning ‘hidden hero’ (ETY, Lost Road: SKAL1).

Galu, (blessings)
Ithildin

 

 

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