Visual Poem Extra Edition: All that is gold does not glitter

…Not all those who wander are lost.” Those are the first two sentences of this ultra famous Tolkien’s poem! Honestly, I cannot understand why but those sentences have so much meaning for so many people, hard to explain even though one might try.

Anyway, today is the anniversary of the well-known Quenya translation of this poem published here! 1 year has gone by!

To celebrate the date, I tried my best to design the images below, one for each verse with arranged Tengwar, related background and the like. I hope you like it and spread anywhere you want!

All that is gold does not glitter

Not all those who wander are lost

The old that is strong does not wither

Deep roots are not reached by the frost

From the ashes a fire shall be woken

A light from the shadows shall spring

Renewed shall be blade that was broken

The crownless again shall be king

Ilya i laurëa ná, mirilya lá;

Queni ya ranya illumë vanwë umir;

I yára ya tulca ná, hésta lá,

Tumnë talmar rahtaina i nixenen umir.

Yúlallo nárë nauva coivaina,

Cálë lómillo tuiuva;

Ceura nauva hyanda ya né rácina,

I ríelóra ata aran nauva.



Filed under Art, Elvish, Poem, Quenya, Tengwar, The Lord Of The Rings, Tolkien

34 responses to “Visual Poem Extra Edition: All that is gold does not glitter

  1. Michael

    whats the difference between Quenya and Sindarin…. i need guidance i am getting a tattoo of the first 2 lines of the riddle of strider and i would like to know being that im a huge legolas fan and i would like to get it in his language (Woodelves) which i believe are sindarin????


  2. Hi! Im a huge LOTR fan and planning to get a tattoo of the first two phrases of striders riddle in quenya or high elvish but have found many different versions. Could you please tell me how to write

    All that is gold does not glitter,
    Not all those who wander are lost;

    in Quenya or High Elvish?


  3. Hey? I’m a huge Tolkien fan and am planning on getting a tattoo of the first two lines og striders riddle. I was interested in doing this in quenya or high elf but have found different translations. Can you please tell me which would be the correct one? Or how to say:

    “All that is gold does not glitter,
    Not all those who wander are lost.”

  4. Al

    Hello! I relly adore Tolkien and his works and am fascinated by him and his languages, especially his love for languages. I am writing a thesis about him and the languages and would like to present the poem All That Is Gold Does Not Glitter and if possible add a Quenya version as well to simply show a) what Queny is and b) how elaborate it is and not just a random amount of words called a language by some old fogie (get to hear that a lot).
    That is why I am asking for your permission to use the translation with the explanation.
    Looking forward to hear from you soon! =)

  5. Aiya, I’m new to this Tengwar stuff, but I’ve already kinda got the hang of it. So, I understand that in Sindarin and English modes the vowel goes on top of the following consonants, but in Quenya it goes on top of the preceeding consonants, correct? My question is, in what occasion do you put the vowels under the consonants? And does the Tengwar have a symbol for ‘c’ that does not sound like the ‘c’ in ‘cat’? If you can help, I would be so grateful 🙂
    Hantanyel, namárië!

    • Hi, Aurelia!

      YEAH, correct! You got the thing about vowels! Pretty good!

      Answering your questions:

      1 – We NEVER put vowels under the tengwar. Any diacritic that may come underneath a tengwa is not a tehta (vowel). They are markings of labialization, doubling of consonants and others. Here, you’ll learn more:

      2 – In Quenya there are “c” like “Cat” and “s” like “CeaSe” At the link above, you’ll find it as well. C = K always, in Quenya.

  6. Is there any way I could get an image of *just* the line “Not all those who wander are lost” from this translation? Like others, I am looking to get it tattooed but have been searching for the correct translation. I am so glad I stumbled upon this website!

  7. Hello I had two questions for you. Other websites and a personal friend of mine say that illume in this translation is spelled wrong and that you have written out ullume instead in the second line. I have seen the word with a dash over the letter instead of the curl which indicates a u (I do not study elvish myself I just had a buddy of mine double check it as I want to get a tattoo done as well and wanted to double check the spelling. your spelling of illume was the only thing he was confused about)

    Also is there any way you could post this in the tengwar anatar regular font? I don’t want to transcribe it myself and screw it up but I might want to get my work done in the other font depending on what it looks like. This would be a great help to me.

    Thank you so much for posting a reliable translation! I haven’t been able to find this anywhere else online and have wanted to get a tattoo done of it for a while so I was very relieved for find a reliable transcription on your site. I will be sure to send you a picture after I get my work done!

    • Hi, Jessica.

      I have already answered the same question some time ago, but unfortunately it was through Twitter, so there is no register (otherwise I could link you there)

      So…illumë and ullumë are complete antonyms, right? But to the sentence and Quenya syntax, the effect is null. I see, there Roman text differs from the Tengwar text. I think that happened through the review process, I don’t know…but I hadn’t fixed before, because it doesn’t affect the meaning.

      Literally what we have is:

      Queni ya raina illumë vanwë umir = People who wander always lost are not.
      Queni ya raina ullumë vanwë umir = People who wander never lost are not.

      The double negative in Quenya with ullumë and umir are complementary to each other and there’s no problem having them both in the same sentence. The key is the negative verb umë. Without it, the whole sentence would be wrong. The adverb used, illumë or ullumë intensifies its meaning, one way or the other. The final result is the same.

      I don’t do rewritings of that sort like you request here (just to change the fonts). If you want use FAST LINE special services, then I can make an exception for you. Check how FAST LINE works here:

  8. Kelsey

    Hey there! I absolutely love this site, it has been a huge help to me recently 🙂

    I was just wondering if you have the line ‘Not all those who wander are lost’ translated by itself? Planning on getting a tattoo of it, but I don’t want to end up getting gibberish.

  9. Tim

    First and foremost thank you so much for this great site and for all the work you put into it! I’ve always found languages interesting and Quenya is no exception!
    I would be interested in seeing a breakdown of the second sentence of the poem in the way you do analysis breakdowns over on the “How do I say (…) in Quenya?” page. I love the translation but I am having trouble locating the roots and patterns of the words to fully understand the nuances of its diction. I ask because I have seen a few different translations of the “Not all those who wander are lost” line and I’d love to see the technical side of the breakdown from you guys who have done extensive research and thorough study of the quenya language!

    Thanks so much!

    • There you are, Tim!!!

      So…about your request:

      The sentence is “Not all those who wander are lost”. The translation here was made by Ondo Carniliono and revised by me, originally posted in 2011 here:

      It’s a poetic translation of the sentence and the metric and rhyme (VERY DIFFICULT to achieve in Quenya) was something Ondo had in mind when he set out for the task.

      Enough with the background, let’s head for the analysis:

      “Queni ya ranya illumë vanwë umir”
      Lit. = “People that stray always lost are not”

      That may sound Yoda-like but Quenya syntax allow this (to some extant) this odd word order.

      Word by word we have:

      Queni = quén+[i] = n.person, one+[plural marker]
      ya = rel. pron. that, which, who
      ranya = vb. to stray, to wander
      illumë = adv. always (lit. all time)
      vanwë = vanwa+[ë] = adj. lost, gone, depart+[plural marker]
      umir = umë+[r] = neg. vb. not to do, not to be+[plural marker]


      Some people in the past have already asked me about the “illumë” (always). Why not ullumë (never) instead? Well, that can be used too, but slightly redundant when you put together two negative elements like ullumë + umir (never + are not)

      So, I hope you enjoyed the analysis of this poetic translation into Quenya of this famous Tolkien sentence.

      I’m glad to be helpful and any time you need anything, just tell me! I’m at your services!

      • Tim

        Heya! I thought I’d drop by with a quick message to show off my new art! Can’t thank you and everyone here at Quenya101 enough. 😀 It has quickly become my favorite of all the pieces I have had done, and I never tire of explaining it to everyone who asks! (It sparks a ton of conversations; people have come from across the room just to find out about it, I really love it :P)

        More than happy to take some more or different shots if you’re interested, I just wanted to throw some quick ones up as a thank you. 🙂

        Work was done at the famous East Side Ink in New York City. The artist did a phenomenal job on some small, extremely intricate line work! Couldn’t be happier!

      • Tim

        For some reason it won’t let me reply to your last comment so I’m replying here and hopefully you can move the comment.

        I don’t have a facebook, but you can always email me using the email I have signed up here with or you can shoot me an email and I can give you my gchat or skype.


  10. Hi!! Thank you so much for creating this site. I am very new to trying to learn Quenya and writing Tengwar. Stumbling upon your site has been a great resource for me so far! For a long time I have been considering getting the first two lines of this wonderful poem tattooed on my ribs. I was going to get it in English but I think I want to get it in Quenya instead! (Just don’t want to be one of those people who end up with butchered versions of the language.) Just to clarify, the last image on this page is in Quenya, correct? Thanks so much!

  11. Pardon my ignorance, I am very new to all of the Quenya/Tengwar differences. This poem is very meaningful to me, when I was a kid my dad used to read LoTR to my sister and I, and this poem is so wonderful. I’m thinking of getting the first two lines of this poem tattooed on me, but I’m definitely going slow and making sure that IF I go through with it I don’t have gibberish stuck on me for life.
    So, just to make sure I understand everything right. I was looking at the following translation ( )
    Just to make sure I understand clearly… The image I linked to above is basically Tengwar characters for the English. What is on this site is translating and transcribing… so the poem here is basically the poem as a native speaker (if native Tengwar speakers existed) would write if I asked one to write out the poem?

    • Hello! Come and sit here with us! Welcome!

      So…the link you showed me, it’s Tengwar English Mode. It’s just English written with another alphabet, Tengwar. What is done here is the translation of the poem to Quenya AND then the writing in Tengwar. So, of course, words are different but the meaning is the same! It is how an elf of Valinor might have read the poem on his native tongue. (Sure, there are different ways of arranging words for poetic purposes and this was also observed here). Concluding, all your assumptions were correct and you do VERY WELL to be cautious of getting a gibberish tattoo! There is so many out there!

      PS: Tengwar speaker?! No, nobody speaks Tengwar!!! Check:

  12. One of the most beautiful poems, on Earth.

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