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Read by Tolkien
It seemed to us that a website featuring the pronunciation of Tolkien’s invented languages would not have been complete without having called upon their author himself to "speak". This is possible, for our greatest joy, since some recordings of Tolkien reading his own texts do exist. Those recordings are valuable for the study of pronunciation, although it may be necessary to take into account natural interference with English phonetics (for which Tolkien did apologise, of course!); for that matter, an analysis of Tolkien’s pronunciation has been led by Laurence J. Krieg at the Phonetics Laboratory of the Michigan University, whose results have been published in An Introduction to Elvish pp. 152-159.

However, the total amount of these recordings being sizeable, it would have been impossible (for various reasons) to provide here the texts in full. Thus, for the sake of usefulness, we chose to give here a list of invented words/names pronounced by Tolkien and to provide for each one a short illustrative audio extract – except these two integral Elvish texts, that we did not want to denature: Tolkien’s records are dated to 1952, August for the greater part. They have been published several times for various occasions: We have separated those extracts into two categories:

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.
Last update of the site: March 25th 2017. Contact us: