Tattoo in making

Discussion in 'The Languages of Middle-earth' started by Bigbm, Dec 3, 2018.

  1. Bigbm

    Bigbm New Member

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    Hello Every1 who might still be here on this marvelous forum .

    I have a Tattoo in a making and I need help , I am not well aware of the Elvish language, I dont know who is .

    I am making a Tattoo , of a ring around my arm .

    I want the Tatoo to have a phrase from a song of Bob Dylan "Don't criticize what you can't understand"

    I tried online Translators and it gave me the following
    upload_2018-12-3_14-5-31.png

    I wanted to know first if it is correct translation , or is it just each letter translated because it does seem like that , it doesnt work like google translate in that manner where the word changes accordingly .

    Also , Pronunciation I want to know to how read it
    I have a few of the words and also i would like to know it is true .

    [​IMG]

    = Don't = Aba/Ava (pronunciation)

    [​IMG]

    = Criticize



    [​IMG] = What = Deg (pronunciation)




    [​IMG] =You = de(pronunciation)



    [​IMG]

    =Can't =


    [​IMG]

    = Understand =Hanya (pronunciation)



    In elvish:

    Ava ______ deg de ______ Hanya


    Any help in that matter would help a lot
    Thank you all
     
  2. Azrubêl

    Azrubêl Drúadan

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    YES, DO IT!!!
     

  3. Bigbm

    Bigbm New Member

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    Lol I shall Indeed , just need an advice regarding the elvish before .
     
  4. Arquen

    Arquen New Member

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    Hello, Bigbm.
    What you found as "translation" is indeed just transribed letter by letter from latin script to elvish script (called Tengwar), i.e. it's still written in English.

    For the translation, we first have to establish, what you mean by "elvish". Because when talking about Tolkien's languages, the term "elvish" describes a language family, rather than the individual language. There are two major elvish languages: Quenya and Sindarin. Sindarin is what you hear in the films and Quenya is kind of like the "latin of the elves"; an older language, used in the films only scarcely. What I can remember from the top of my head is Saruman's weather spell and Frodo's incantation when using the light of Eärendil in Shelob's lair. Quenya is also what people usually mean when they say they learn elvish. Because Quenya has got much more materials to learn from than Sindarin.

    The difference between the looks between the two is like this:
    Sindarin: Nîn o Chithaeglir lasto beth daer; rimmo nîn Bruinen dan in Ulaer! (Arwen's river spell)
    Quenya: Cuiva nwalca Carnirassë! Nai yarvaxëa rasselya taltuva ñotto-carinnar! (Saruman's spell)

    The difference in sound, simply put, is that Sindarin sounds like Welsh and Quenya sounds like Finnish.

    For the actual translation, I can help only with Quenya, not with Sindarin.

    Here's how I would translate the phrase:
    Áva naiquetë tai lá polit hanya.

    Áva - "
    don't"
    Naiquetë - infinitive of naiquet-, meaning "to curse" or "to blaspheme". (negative imperative is formed from the negative imperative particle áva + infinitive) There is no word for "to criticise", so we have to get creative.
    Tai - "that which"
    Lá - negative verbal particle
    Polit - second person singular aorist (~present simple) of pol-, meaning "can" or "to be able to"
    Hanya - infinitive of hanya-, meaning "to understand"

    Another alternatives may be:
    skipping the "can't" part and just say ...tai lá hanyat: "...what you don't understand"
    different version of the negative: ...tai uat polë hanya/...tai uat hanya

    As for pronunciation, it's pretty straightforward. Everything is read exactly as it is written, with some details to pay attention to:
    Á is a long A and is more open than the English A. A good example would be German I'd say. (This goes to all A's, not just the long ones)
    que is /kwe/ and not /ke/
    nai and tai are with the same /ai/ sound as the word "lie", just short.
    the E at the end of naiquetë is not silent. It's also not /ey/ or a shwa; it's just an /e/, like in "bed"
    , again with long A. L itself is quite different from the English L, but that goes for pretty much every letter in Quenya an we'd be here till Christmas if we were to obsess over every single phonetic detail.
    polit is simply /polit/, not /poh-lit/ and the I sound softly like in "machine", not like [ɪ]. And the O is an actual O, not the American O.
    hanya is a little more complicated to explain becase the ny represents one sound and that sound doesn't per se exist in English. The IPA symbol for it is ɲ (a palatal nasal). I just suggest googling it and finding the recording of the sound on wikipedia.

    Well, that's all for my wall of text. I hope it helps.

    EDIT: For transcription to Tengwar just go to Tecendil.com and copy paste the phrase in (make sure you copy the long vowels). IMPORTANT: make sure to go to options on the website and switch it to Quenya mode. The translator you used was in Sindarin mode and there seemed to be no way to change that. Sindarin and Quenya use different rules for vowel placement and some characters are different, so the result would be very different, and wrong.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2018 at 9:16 AM

  5. Bigbm

    Bigbm New Member

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    First of all my dear Mellon , you are great , great person and possibly also an amazing Elf

    So thank you so much for this help , this is something that is going to stick with me for the rest of my life apparently .
    I have also learned a lot and I will learn more myself.

    I have translated this on the website you sent me, and took this Phrase :
    Áva naiquetë tai lá polit hanya upload_2018-12-13_16-1-28.png



    This will look great around my arm , I will send here and upload the Tattoo after its made

    Many Many Thanks
     
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