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Narqelion
English
Qenya
Sarati

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N·alalmino lalantila
Ne·súme lasser pínea
Ve sangar voro úmeai
Oïkta rámavoite malinai.

Ai lintulind(ov)a Lasselanta
Piliningwe súyer nallar qanta
Kuluvai ya karnevalinar
V’ematte sinqi Eldamar.

San rotser simpetalla pinqe,
Súlimarya sildai, hiswa timpe
San sirilla ter i·aldar:
Lilta lie noldorinwa
Ómalingwe lir’ amaldar
Sinqitalla laiqaninwa.

N·alalmino hyá lanta lasse
Torwa pior má tarasse:
Tukalla sangar úmeai
Oïkta rámavoite karneambarai.

Ai lindórea Lasselanta
Nierme mintya náre qanta.
From the elm-tree falling one by one
small leaves were in the wind,
like throngs ever large
of yellow birds on the wing.

Oh! Fall with its many swallows,
the airs are so full of golden feathers,
and orange-red ones too,
that they call to mind the gems of Elven-home.

Then pipes playing their thin music,
slender columns of pearl, a dim rain
at that time flowing though the trees:
the dancing Gnome-folk
sang a gentle tune with many voices,
sparkling green and blue.

From the elm-tree here a leaf falls,
the dark-brown fruit in the hand of the hawthorn:
attracting large throngs
of red-breasted birds on the wing.

Oh! with singing at dawn Fall
reminds me that it is filled with grief.

Commentary
Narqelion “Autumn” is the first poem J. R. R. Tolkien composed in one of his Elvish languages. The manuscript by which we know it bears the dates of November 1915 to March 1916, presumably the period at which it was composed. There is no translation, but most of the poem can be elucidated today.

Narqelion was presented for the first time in full in the fanzine Mythlore (n° 56, hiver 1988, p. 48), together with an interpretation by Paul Nolan Hyde. Patrick Wynne and Christopher Gilson propounded another one in 1990 in Parma Eldalamberon n° 9. Since then, the Qenya Lexicon has been published and has greatly increased our knowledge about the early forms of Qenya: as a consequence the poem was newly published in 1999 in Vinyar Tengwar n° 40, with a facsimile of the manuscript, a transcription, a detailed analysis and two translations (a literal version on the one hand, a freer poetic rendering on the other hand) by Christopher Gilson. The texts we give here come from his work.

The text is transcribed in sarati or “letters of Rúmil”, written vertically from top to bottom and from left to right. The signs are used according to Tolkien’s valuation for Quenya. We made use of Måns Björkman’s typeface Sarati Eldamar.

References
Parma Eldalamberon: The Book of Elven-tongues. Edited by Christopher Gilson. Cupertino (California): 1971-  . 🌍 Eldalamberon.
Vinyar Tengwar: The journal of the Elvish Linguistic Fellowship, a Special Interest Group of the Mythopoeic Society. Edited by Carl F. Hostetter. Crofton (Maryland): 1988-  . ISSN 1054-7606. 🌍 The Elvish Linguistic Fellowship.

The works of John Ronald Reuel and Christopher Tolkien are under the copyright of their authors and/or rights holders, including their publishers and the Tolkien Estate.
Quotations from other authors, editors and translators mentioned in the bibliography are under the copyright of their publishers, except for those whose copyright term has ended.
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