Forum: Languages in Arda

Discussing: So who did speak what, then?

So who did speak what, then?

There seems to be some contention (see recent exchanges in HASA) as to what languages they spoke in Gondor as first, second, third &c (from Adunic, Sindarin and Westron) and whether this might have varied over time, with class of speaker, personal inclination &c.

If anyone can cite chapter and verse (I know I can't) then posting the details here would be fun.




Re: So who did speak what, then?

Well, I've not been participating in that discussion 'cause I don't know anything about the languages of M.E., but it did get me curious. I found the following two articles of interest:

Adûnaic - the vernacular of Númenor

Various Mannish Tongues - the sadness of Mortal Men?

They're not very comprehensive from the standpoint of one who really wants to understand the languages of Men in M.E., but I get the impression that JRRT didn't give a whole lot of thought to them anyway. It seems that the most has been written about the language of the Rohirrim, but not a lot about other languages but Elvish.

If I get the time, I'll go back through the list emails and see what I can glean from the messages there, and post my findings.



Re: So who did speak what, then?

Ahm, how do you mean that question exactly? Do you mean how well-known these languages were in Gondor according to social class and other things or do you want to know the historical succession within the Gondorian realm?



Re: So who did speak what, then?

Roughly on this topic - what would Boromir have spoken? Westron only? Westron but some Sindarin?





Re: So who did speak what, then?

Boromir would spoken Westron and at least some Sindarin, and might even have been fluent. Since Faramir was the scholar, I expect he would have been fluent.

From Peoples of Middle-earth:
But among themselves the kings and high lords, and indeed all those of Numenorean blood in any degree, for long used the Noldorin speech; and in that tongue they gave names to men and to places throughout the realms of the heirs of Elendil

A few paragraphs later speaking of the events at the time of LotR:
...while Men who dwelt in Eriador, the wide land between the Misty Mountains and Ered Lindon, or in the coast-lands south of the White Mountains, used the Westron only and had long forgotten their own tongues. So it was with the folk of Gondor (other than the lords)...

Now looking forward to your new story with Boromir,



Re: So who did speak what, then?

Thank you, Lyllyn.




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