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Александр Запрягаев Jan 27, 2016 (15:22)


The stem, MEN, does not even appear in the Etymologies as verbal; the only thing it says about the unglossed root is that it derives in Q men 'place, spot' and ména 'region' [cf. also Men Falros, on of the preceding names to Cair Andros, at WR:326 for a Noldorin (Ilk?) equivalent — but, per +Roman Rausch [1], men < mindâ from MIN is yet not out of the question] as well as forming the basis for compass-points: Númen, Rómen etc.

* 1948 Apparently, the verbalization of the stem happens midway through the writing of QVS. The first emergence of MEN is at the description of past-forms, on PE22:103, where it is given as 'MEN, aim at, intend, purpose, with allative "make for, proceed towards", menne'. The 'Syntactical notes' below (118 etc.) employs it much in the given meaning, with such examples as ni•mene tule 'I wish to come', me menilti karilti 'we wish them to make them (other things)' and more.
However, a huge change of concept can be traced in a simple note to himself he put on page one upon completion (99): "alter mene throughout in sense 'mean' > tele. Wish, want is mer with true R". Faithful to his words, Tolkien did perform that throughout: ni mene tule becomes ni tele tule, but in most cases mene is changed to mere. The gloss of MEN itself is also altered simultaneously, in red ink, into bare 'MEN, go, proceed, menne'. As we observe, since now the stem joins the roster of movement verbs — but is it with implied allative or without? As we shall observe, the question was not so simple for Tolkien.

* Mid-50s The stem was not used in print in LotR; yet its reappearance might be during the composition of the Lord's Prayer. Per VT43:15, in At. I-IV the concept 'thy will' was rendered by mendelya, which the editors trace to MEN. Note, also following their analysis, the emphasis on intended, desired direction, still connected to will of one moving.
However, the verb men is somehow present in omentie 'meeting'; in the various attempts during the 50s, Tolkien glosses it first as "go, move (generally)' [WP1>, then 'go, come' > 'go, proceed' [WP2] and 'go, proceed' from the beginning in the final WPP (all PE17:013). While attempting to explain mae govannen several pages below (16), Tolkien notes BA(N) as a Sindarin stem corresponding to MEN in Quenya and derived ultimately to Quenya BA/ABA 'go away' (this is to be noted, for the idea of Quenya 'go away' losing the 'away' connotation in Sindarin will persist, though with the stem WA, in the QE-related batch; I plan to discuss it closer when dealing with WA), immediately re-interpreted with BAN 'meet' and then apparently with BAD.

* Late 50s The vast majority of MEN-related material can be retrieved from the texts connected with Quendi and Eldar essay. The advent of MEN can be traced to Tolkien's 'definitive linguistic note' (much revised afterwards) on the alteration of negation in Eldarin; as in PE17:143, he chooses to eliminate BA(N) 'go' in order to use it for negation of command; the missing spot is immediately filled: 'For this sense Quenya, Sindarin stem is MEN'. (Maybe Tolkien opted to replace govannen with govennen?). Further DLN explanation follows the roadmap by defining (165) MEN as 'go, move, proceed in any direction (irrespective of speaker's position, or assumed point of thought)'. Furthermore, mēn is glossed 'a way, a going, a movement'.
* Late 50s The QE itself, however, uses DEL for basic 'going', and the idea of will is present again. VT39:11, Note 7, gives MEN as bare 'go', yet uses it to derive desiderative mína n. 'desiring to start, eager to go' and even v. 'desire to go in some direction, to wish to go to a place, make for it; have some end in view' (emphasis on allative is mine). The etymological commentary to Ósanwe-kenta makes the point clearest (VT41:06): 'MEN move, proceed (in a direction intended by a person)' and even supplies a causative, '_menta_ send, cause to go (in a desired direction). Cf. also sanwementa 'thought-sending, mental message' in SAM (05).
To be exact, the verbal stem menta did appear while interpreting omentie as early as WP1; but, apparently unsatisfied with the necessity to render a simple verbal stem MEN as an extended menta ('meeting' does not suggest 'together-sending'), he reinterpreted it in the final manuscript as men + tie, 'way-path'.
* 1959 A list with note on Dwarf (see PE17:046), supplied to a list of roots dated 'Dec. 59', gives (ibid.:166) a number of prefixes meaning 'back'; while discussing NDAN 'back again', Q nanwen, S dadwen 'return, go, come back' are mentioned (going 'back' might also imply allative).

However, there are two texts of interest, postdating Quendi and Eldar.
* Ca. 1964 Comparative in Eldarin provides, in PE17:093, Note 5, a rather unexpected rendition of MEN. Describing 'verbs using intransitive ta only in the present/aorist', it provides an example of MEN, glossed 'have as object, (in)tend, proceed, make for, towards' as menta present (omentie problem again?), past menne. The example is even more strange noting ā mene ammēnie 'proceed with more determination' (ibid.:094) while answering to Plotz. Tolkien's elimination of any stem to mean 'send' is discouraging. Anyway, the circle is complete; the similarity of the verbal gloss to one in original QVS layer twenty-some years before is striking.
* Ca. 1969 In Hands, Fingers and Numerals, Tolkien writes the same sentence again and again (thrice), while revising the same page: Imbi Menel Kemenye mene Ráno tie, 'between Heaven and Earth goes the path of the Moon' (VT47:11). This usage for simple 'go' (though following the path still) is not really expected, but goes in line with the decision (quickly abandoned) to obsolete DEL 'go' by DEL 'will' in Fate and Free Will.
* Ca. 1969 A list is in existence (VT49:23-24), describing various 'go' stems as they stood in the latest period of linguistic creation. Among other roots it gave originally ten, invoked to explain tenna in Elendil's Oath. The forms given were: aorist tene indefinite in time, téna 'is on the point of arrival', tenne 'arrived' with locative, eténie 'just arrived' and tenuva will arive. Subsequently, however, he revised TEN here to MEN in all its occurences; what are we to make of such a spontaneous decision? Obviously, everything we knew about MEN before contradicts this 'arrival-based', 'right to a point'-verbal stem, as well as the use above; mene Ráno tie and quiquie menin koaryanna are more apart than similar. I'd risk to say it's safe to disregard this replacement (the actual replacement verb may rather be anya 'to arrive', consistently mentioned in the latest of this period, LVS10 (PE22:157, 'go to, reach'), LVS13 (ibid.:163, 'arrive at, reach') — the similarity of gloss with 'to be on point of arrival, to come to an end' given for ten/men is heavy; but perhaps we should abstain from making final decisions before the complete list is released.
In UT, Men i Naugrim in S. uses men as 'way, path', unlike the earlier Noldorin example.

This will be controversial and might spark discussion, but I understand Tolkien's concept as such:
* The stem MEN is verbal and implies will to go to an end. The meaning of men is 'go towards' (with allative), proceed (also figuratively, make for, aim for an object)'. It is conjugated as a basic verb and has a causative menta, 'to send'.
* The derivatives include 'to return', Q nanwen, S dadwen, 'a message', menta, and men, which is apparently 'way, path' in both Q and S (though Etym might still hold). Further prefixation yields yomen/omen, 'to meet', substantivised as yomenie/omentie (t actually from tie but understood as a further implication of duality — cf. WJ:407).
* The idea of 'arrival' is expressed by a wholly different verb, anya, ánea, anne (ananye?), (an)ánie, anuva.

[1] Essekenta Endamarwa by Roman Rausch: .

Dedicated to C. N. Next time, with Eru's help, I hope to survive TEG, TEγ, TEK and TEÑ (to say nothing of TEN!).
Essekenta Endamarwa: Names from The Return of the Shadow, The Treason of Isengard and The War of the Ring
If we seek to recapture what they had forgotten, and examine each of the original elements in turn, it must be rather for the pleasure of the hunt than in hope of a final kill. J.R.R. Tolkien — Medium Ævum III 2 p. 95. √TĂR > tāra, tall, ups…sta… PE17:186 ...

Tamas Ferencz Jan 27, 2016 (16:13)

Nice analysis! Although I am not sure what is so controversial about your conclusion?

Александр Запрягаев Jan 27, 2016 (18:23)

+Tamas Ferencz Well, the 'read anya for men in VT49' bit. Though I strongly believe everything we know about Tolkien's work and way of thinking allows us to disregard the ten > men replacement as an experimenting/error.

This part was much harder than the previous, because Tolkien used this stem too much — and constantly shifted accents!

Tamas Ferencz Jan 28, 2016 (09:07)

Let's consider though that ten also features in LVS10 in the forms of tensi and tenta (transparently "up to now" and "up to then"). So ten- as a verb could be explained away the same way as anya-: a verb formed from a prepositional stem, TEN being "as far as" (cf. Hungarian -ig), AN "to, towards" (Hungarian hoz/hez/höz)

Александр Запрягаев Jan 28, 2016 (15:41)

+Tamas Ferencz I agree that TEN needs further consideration (which I'll give to it when studing TEK/TEG etc.). However, I do not believe that even the original layer, with the verb ten, is to remain: a critical amout of data (see tenante/tentane in Ambidexter Sentence) points to TEN as a prepositional/adverbial stem, with much known derivatives and an Eldarin impossibility to form a verb without extension. However tenta < TEN follows the pattern indicated by orta < OR. There is nothing in the entry to suggest an identity; in fact, the meaning of TEN-verbal derivatives elsewhere ('point, indicate' as basic) is quite far from 'arrive'. A semantic closeness is apparent - but not an equality!

Александр Запрягаев Jan 29, 2016 (13:35)

+Tamas Ferencz An addition I'd like to make, in RGeO (canonically settled) p. 64, men is glossed 'direction, region'. Apparently, the 'active' meaning of men as 'way' in S still coexists with the Etym interpretation for Quenya. We still need Númen, after all.

Ekin Gören Jan 31, 2016 (23:07)

+Александр Запрягаев A job well done! I can't wait for TEN(/TEÑ?)-TEK/TEG..!