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Leonard W. Sep 20, 2017 (09:23)

Mellyn! What do we know about the rules for lengthening vowels in compounds and inflections in Quenya? A typical example of what I am trying to understand would be eldaliéva.

Александр Запрягаев Sep 20, 2017 (10:04)

Rule-of-thumb: the stress tries either to stay at its place or move iambically (two syllables to the right). If a new inflection forces the stress to move non-iambically (one syllable to the right) but that can be fixed by a penultimate lengthening, the lengthening does happen.

Leonard W. Sep 20, 2017 (10:11)

Thank you, but how do we know when to move stress?

Александр Запрягаев Sep 20, 2017 (10:34)

+Leonard W. The third mora rule works in Quenya perfectly.

Tamas Ferencz Sep 20, 2017 (10:56)

+Leonard W. I call it "the horror of four shorts"; i.e. Quenya does not tolerate four short syllables in a row therefore it lengthens the penultimate syllable which then receives the stress. If = is a long syllable and ^ is a short one then
eldalie: =^^^
**eldalieva would be =^^^^ so it becomes eldaliéva =^^=^

A good example to demonstrate the rule is what happens with the long form of the 3rd person singular pronominal suffix in future conjugation. The suffix has two possible long forms: -sse and -se. If the future form of the verb has 3 short syllables (tuluva) and it receives -sse then the penultimate syllable naturally receives the stress: tuluVAsse; but if the suffix is -se, then the horror of four shorts kicks in and a lengthening takes place: tuluVÁse.

Leonard W. Sep 20, 2017 (11:28)

Thank you, +Tamas Ferencz, for your brilliant explanation! I just have one more question pertaining to syllables: how do I identify a long syllable?

Александр Запрягаев Sep 20, 2017 (11:37)

+Leonard W. By a long vowel, a diphthong or being closed by a sequence of two or more consonants (well, according to PE19, the absolute final syllable closed by one consonant is also heavy, but it is irrelevant).

Leonard W. Sep 20, 2017 (11:41)

Awesome! Thanks a lot guys! :D

Paul Strack Sep 20, 2017 (13:02)

I would suggest one additional rule. In cases where the stress moves forward, there is a general tendency to place it on the final vowel of the uninflected form. Thus Eldaliéva but malinornélion, as opposed to (incorrect) malinornelíon. An alternate rule that has a similar effect: Quenya dislikes placing the stress on the first of two short vowels in hiatus.

Also, the stress only moves forward when the original stress is more than three syllables from the end, so malinorneva without any lengthening, because the original stress is still within three syllables of the end.

Paul Strack Sep 20, 2017 (13:14)

One more addendum: vowel lengthening (as opposed to simply moving the stress) seems to occur only when the uninflected word has at least three syllables. Thus ciryalion (stress on the third-to-last syllable, but no lengthening). But Oroméva.

Tamas Ferencz Sep 20, 2017 (13:27)

+Paul Strack this latter addendum does not contradict the horror of four shorts rule: ciryalion has its first syllable long because of the ry palatalized consonant, so no need for lengthening; whereas **Oromeva would have four short syllable, hence the é.

Александр Запрягаев Sep 20, 2017 (13:43)

Note also that any addition to a vowel-ending stem which is supposed to be long or over-long basically brings the finally shortened length back.

Paul Strack Sep 21, 2017 (02:32)

+Tamas Ferencz I am pretty sure if it were Orrome (long short short) the possessive would be Orroméva.

I think the trigger for vowel lengthening is not 4 short syllables. I think it is (a) polysyllabic vocalic noun that (b) has a suffix long enough that the stress must move forward. In such cases the stress "wants" to fall on the final vowel of the uninflected word to separate the noun from its suffix. If that final vowel is in a short syllable (followed by a single consonant) it is lengthened.

Thus malinorne >> malinornélion (stress moves forward one syllable to final vowel of uninflected form) but cirya >> ciryalion (no lengthening because not a polysyllabic noun, although stress moves forward one syllable).

Also Orome >> Oroméva (stress moves forward two syllables to final vowel of uninflected form) but Elda >> Eldava (stress doesn't move). Also note Elda >> Eldaiva (stress moves but no lengthening because stress already falls on a long diphthong).

There are two possible exceptions to the polysyllabic noun rule: Huinéva and táríva. It may that a disyllabic noun with a diphthong or a long vowel allow the stress to move forward with vowel lengthening even though, strictly speaking, it isn't necessary, but that hard to judge.

Leonard W. Sep 21, 2017 (07:32)

+Paul Strack I am not sure I understand. How is cirya not polysyllabic: kir-ja?

I realised, by reading your former posts, that polysyballic actually means at least three or more syllables.

Tamas Ferencz Sep 21, 2017 (08:25)

+Paul Strack hm, indeed, that seems to make sense, and the rule seems to work for compounds as well, cf. Cuiviénen.

Thank you, this has helped me, too, understand the patterns involved.

Paul Strack Sep 21, 2017 (13:33)

+Tamas Ferencz I didn't even think to look at compounds! Unfortunately, there don't seem to be many compounds whose initial element is trisyllabic or longer, but Cuiviénen vs. Cuivienyarna does seem to be another confirmation of the pattern.