Quenya Verbs Conjugation Guide

VERBVerbs! The mortar of every syntax! Through this guide, you’ll be given the tools to conjugate most of the Quenya verbs (the regular ones at least) and I hope it helps you to understand better how the language works. Here, I’ll treat specifically about the tenses and suffixes. Further and deeper explanations as well as exercises to help your progress will be given in Quenya101 Elvish School Basic Course

Quenya has 12 verb forms (including the root). Though not completely alike English, it’s not that hard to grasp when to use one tense or the other. The functions are pretty clear. When you translate sentences having in mind the function of the verb, you won’t commit mistakes. Do not pay attention to the surface. English has dozens of functions involving the same suffixes like -ing, -ed, that may lead you to error!

There are 2 classes of regular verbs in Quenya. They are divided according to how their roots look like and how they evolved. Check below:



A-stem verbs Primary verbs
nyéna- mat-
mapa- car-
ista- suc-

Primary verbs are verbs which had no “intrusion” of a vowel in its root. A-stem verbs had the addition of “a” in it. Easy, right? Let’s move on!


A-stem verbs Primary verbs
nyéna (to lament) matë (to eat)
mapa (to grasp) carë (to do)
ista (to know) sucë (to drink)

As easy as it gets! A-verbs stay the same! Primary verbs have their infinitive form ending in -ë.


A-stem verbs Primary verbs
nyénëa (is lamenting) máta (is eating)
mápëa (is grasping) cára (is doing)
istëa (is knowing) súca (is drinking)

Careful! Present tense in Quenya is NOT like Present tense in English. The function is different. Present tense in Quenya actually means Present Continuous in English. A-verbs add the ë before the final a and the first vowel becomes long if not already and if not in the initial position. Primary verbs get the first long too and end in a.


A-stem verbs Primary verbs
nyéna (laments) matë, mati- (eats)
mapa (grasps) carë, cari- (does)
ista (knows) sucë, suci- (drinks)

Aorist is the English Simple Present. It’s just a matter of naming. It’s not hard. A-verbs remain as infinitive. Primary verbs do too! But when attaching suffixes (personal pronouns or plural markers) the stem vowel changes from e to i. So, carë (regular form) against carin (I do), caril (you do) and so on…



A-stem verbs Primary verbs
nyénanë (lamented) mantë (ate)
mampë (grasped) carnë (did)
sintë (knew) suncë (drank)

Ouch! Watch out here! Past tense is full of irregular forms and this is where the trouble begins. The regular suffix is -në as you can see in nyénanë and carnë. But its addition most of the times will create a consonant cluster that is not allowed in Quenya that’s why we have mantë instead of matnë or suncë instead of sucnë. See? After the first glimpse, they are not that irregular! Well…sintë is the only truly irregular verb in this mini table.


A-stem verbs Primary verbs
nyénuva (will lament) matuva (will eat)
mapuva (will grasp) caruva (will do)
istuva (will know) sucuva (will drink)

Phew! Unlike Past Tense, Future is very nice and friendly. It’s all about -uva. Add it and you’re good to go! Don’t forget to drop the ‘a’ in the A-verbs root when adding the future suffix! One thing interesting about Future in Quenya is that there are no distinctions between near and far future. Everything’s gonna be the same. Uva here and uva there!

…to be continued…




Filed under English, Guide, Linguistics, Quenya

10 responses to “Quenya Verbs Conjugation Guide

  1. Lily

    Ok, so if you’re using the future tense do you have to put the personal pronouns before or after the main word (yeah awesome technical language) for example if I wanted to say I will find would I just say ‘hiruva’ or would I use a personal pronoun and where would I put it:) And what are the personal pronouns do they change?

  2. Your graphics and layout distill out the essence of the matter more clearly than an essay can. I hope that irregulars (the bane of language students!) will prove amenable to similar distillation. Thank you for you effort.

    • Thank you! It’s always my goal to be the most visual possible when explaining something. It helps people to understand and really grasp the thing as a whole.

      I’ll try my best to make something for irregular verbs. They are not that easy for sure!

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  5. Well…Your way of explaining it is much easier to understand, than anything else I’ve seen – – especially the difference between Present and Aorist! Most of the explanations I’ve seen, my extremely unintellectual mind gets lost in!

    • Thank you, Linda for the compliment!

      I strive to make things easier when explaining. I like to do that way. Sometimes changing terms, shifting ways to say it is the best alternatives to spread knowledge. Of course, technical details are always welcome, but it may hinder the first steps to obtain sure footed knowledge.

  6. i love it!!!!!!! , its super useful thank you very much !!!!

    • Hoooray! Thank you! Mission accomplished! I hope it helps whenever one is undecided about conjugation a Quenya verb. Sure, it won’t bring the answer for everything, specially when it comes to irregularities, but it’s a initial path to follow.

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