Tolkien Gateway


The Ósanwe-kenta, or "Enquiry into the Communication of Thought", is a manuscript by J.R.R. Tolkien. It was written in c. 1959-60 as a typescript of eight pages and was published in Vinyar Tengwar, Number 39, July 1998. A related manuscript, "Etymological Notes on the Ósanwe-kenta", was published in Vinyar Tengwar, Number 41, July 2000.

In the framework of the legendarium of Middle-earth, the text is a summary by an unnamed editor of a longer treatise by Pengolodh of Gondolin.

The subject-matter is sanwe-latya (Quenya for "thought-opening", but better translated as "telepathy"). Pengolodh included it as an appendix to the Lhammas because of the implications of tengwesta ("grammar, language") on thought-transmission, i.e. with the development of language, telepathy became more difficult and all but fell out of use among the "incarnated" (those beings with hröa).