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Forum:URGENT: Roots and words.

Tolkien Gateway > Forums > URGENT: Roots and words.

Guys, I believe that it is high time we had a proper compilation of the primitive Elven roots, both from The Etymologies, the Addenda/Corrigenda published in Parma Eldalamberon and Vinyar Tengwar, and the Elven mini-lexicon at the end of the Silmarillion.

I know it is a painstaking task, but this whole thing is a knowledge base, right? We have to take the time to do this. Recently I was able to acquire a copy of the Lost Road, so I now have access to the whole range of roots, stems, and words. Frankly, I was astounded at the huge amount of information in there- and also, how little of it is up here. Maybe we should get a team together? Transcribe say, two roots (and all corresponding info) a day, and post them up here. Each. We could get done quite quickly, but I need volunteers. We could quite easily make a full Elven-corpus, as it is, with Quenya, Sindarin, Telerin, Ossiriandic, Doriathrin, etc. Simply because we have access to all of it. Maybe an interactive Etymological engine. I know Morgan's got a lot of info up here too in his own dictionaries. Would it really take that long to establish a language-base here? If we had 50 people willing to do this, and we each did 2 roots a day, we would be done in less than a week. Dunno, actually, haven't counted how many there are. But definitely not more than five days.

OBVIOUSLY... we won't get fifty people. And that's okay. It can be over time. Willingly we could do more. But really, i think it is a rather splendid idea to get together a full knowledgebase, user-friendly,practical as well as abstract, for those who understand linguistics and those who don't. I want to make this better than what we have at Ardalambion,with lookup functions for all the Elven-tongues, and English too.

What do you say? who is willing? we need as many people as possible, but they must be committed enough to copy out around 2 entries from the book every day. Also, you must have access to the material.And finally (if we do get a team together) maybe the admins could make us a seperate, veiled-off section on this site for us to work on and compile stuff. Would all this be possible? Unsigned comment by Reallyfat (talk • contribs).

I'm glad to see your enthusiasm, Reallyfat! While I basically agree with your idea, you have to remember that the work is more tedious than one can imagine. Two years ago I had rather much free time, and wrote ca. 20 or 30 linguistic articles about primitive Elven roots. The problem is that it often takes many hours to write a good article, checking information in PE, VT and HoMe 5 (you also have quite many roots in War of the Jewels, and some other writings). In other words I sadly don't think it's possible to get a team of volunteers together to do this on a regular basis. But if you're excited to get started, there's nothing holding you back! :-) --Morgan 17:12, 9 April 2013 (UTC)
I have some reservations, eg. I am sure we must resolve in some subective interpretations, such as deciding if a root is related to another or not, or whether we should update it to comform with a word Tolkien later updated (see for example, ocamnar). Other than that, I am with you. Sage 17:55, 9 April 2013 (UTC)
Well, as far changing, obsolete, and similar roots I agree 100%. And Morgan, my plan was not to write articles, but to establish a database. Kind of like you have done with your dictionaries. But a full, searching/finding, in depth dictionary.

So, what do you say? Are you in too? Really, it is as simple as opening up the etymologies and transcribing in two entries every day.

Sage, if you are 'officially' in, shift over to my talk page, and we can begin assignments there. I also hope that an admin (Ederchil, we need you) will soon be able to offer us a better place on the site for putting together the work.

Thanks.Unsigned comment by Reallyfat (talk • contribs).

Well this sounds rather interesting if you ask me, although I'm mainly interested in Noldorin and I truly must say that I have no idea how much time I would have available to spend on this. ~denDAY 22:04, 3 July 2013 (UTC)

I'm not sure if there's a need to reinvent the wheel. Certainly I'd like (and plan) to go through the articles here and clean up a good amount of the unsourced and/or incorrect or (inappropriately) speculatory Elvish content on here (especially for name etymologies and standalone word pages), but as far as an actual database goes a much higher caliber one is already in progress: Paul Strack's Eldamo. For an example, look at his page for the root KAL. While it is a work in progress and he is still going through the issues of Parma Eldalamberon and adding every entry necessary before he goes back to double-check and crossreference everything, he's working quickly, only taking (e.g.) a few months to add the entire contents of lexicon-heavy PE13. Unless we are planning to create an even more comprehensive database, I think our time and effort could be better spent on other tasks which already need doing around here.

On a side note, years ago there was a previous attempt to create a linguistic database like this, but in a wiki format (and not all done by one person like Eldamo): EldarinWiki, hosted/founded by Tamas Ferencz, webmaster of the (unfortunately) now-defunct Aglardh (and now of a Google+ Elvish community with a good amount of traffic: certainly more than several once-popular forums and mailing lists). It was relatively slow-paced, with only a few people adding entries at differing frequency (I was one of the less frequent), and some continually having to rewrite new entries made by others in order to maintain style consistency. Ultimately it ended up shutting down after a deluge of spambots continued to bypass attempts at blocking their registration and then drowned pages and new articles with gibberish and advertising links. The few users (and one overworked admin) were unable to keep up with removing all the new spam entries and additions to already-existing pages, so that the already slow pace of linguistic addition halted entirely. The wiki was locked, and later its hosting wasn't renewed. Unweg 02:04, 14 July 2015 (UTC)

This conversation started about 2 years ago, and we still haven't done anything on it. I sorta get this tech idea and we definitely can't have a bunch of advertising here(considering the recent game of war advertising), but the format is different on our site. However, I don't think we should take this risk until we do enough studying to find out if it is a risk or not. If it isn't a danger to Tolkien Gateway, count me in as a volunteer Arya 01:28, 16 July 2015 (UTC)