Post MQK5df8PsvM

Leonard W. Aug 26, 2014 (11:59)

Hi! I'm trying to translate "under your veil," and I note that there are two prepositions I can use, namely di and nu. Do we know what the distinction between them is?

Tamas Ferencz Aug 26, 2014 (12:19)

+Leonard W. int which language are you translating?
 I am assuming Sindarin. To my knowledge there are no differences between the two prepositions (oter than I don't think I have seen di with the definite article affixed)

Leonard W. Aug 26, 2014 (12:54)

It's indeed Sindarin! :) I'll use these prepositions interchangeably then, where appropriate! Thanks!

Björn Fromén Aug 26, 2014 (21:44)

di is only known from Sam's invocation: di-nguruthos, glossed 'beneath death-horror' and 'overwhelmed in dread of death' in The Road Goes Ever On. This single example points to a more figurative sense than that of nu, which indicates physical localisation (Taur nu Fuin, Dagor nuin Giliath).

Lőrinczi Gábor Aug 27, 2014 (01:19)

+Björn Fromén On the other hand, according to PE/17:95 di means simply "beneath, not touching, under".

Btw, I think that the  meaning of nu in the name Taur-nu-Fuin ("the Forest under Night") is just as figurative than that of di in the expression di nguruthos.

Björn Fromén Aug 27, 2014 (10:30)

Strictly speaking it is Q that is said to mean "beneath, not touching. under". But the RGEO commentary confirms 'beneath' for di, used in a figurative sense (= "overwhelmed in").
And since fuin refers to a physical darkness, I find nu-Fuin less figurative than di-nguruthos, which refers to a state of mind.

Roman Rausch Aug 27, 2014 (15:14)

It is used in a figurative sense, i.e. it's just a metaphor, but I doubt that this is something inherent to the preposition. Such a thing was once claimed for the short -s case in Quenya as well (based on kále hendus), but now we've got some non-figurative locative examples as well. Note also that in Quenya, nuhuinenna 'under shadow' uses nu.

In fact, it's clear what happened (and it's quite typical, really): Di was probably intended to mean 'in', one of the translations has 'in the shadow of death' (I don't have my sources at hand right now, I think it was in Letters; VT45/46 should have NDI-, N dî/di 'in' and di ngorgoros). Later, Tolkien reinterprets it as 'beneath', leaving us to guess what this means for nu.

Lőrinczi Gábor Aug 27, 2014 (15:47)

+Björn Fromén
True, but I'm not sure that fuin refers here only to physical darkness, since Taur-nu-Fuin was a corrupted, haunted land.