The All-Elvish Tengwar Keyboard

This post is dedicated to Troy Telford. He requested me through Fast Line to help him in writing down a full Tengwar Keyboard, but not only that; he also wanted some important keys like Ctrl, Alt, Shift and so on to be translated into Quenya. I found his idea pretty cool and as he’s set to make the elvish keyboard a reality, why not participating in this interesting project?

Additionally, I think this will interest a lot Elizabeth from New Zealand who recently asked me about math operations (the basic ones) and their adaptation into Quenya.

That’s exactly what Quenya101 is all about! We’re set to help YOU with everything you may need concerning Quenya lore! I hope Troy, Elizabeth and many fans out there enjoy a lot this humble post and use it anyway they feel like (just don’t forget the credits please, it’s not much I ask)

Firstly, you’ll find a table with the ideas behind the project. Have in mind that many things came out from Troy himself. I just corrected one thing or two and establish a standard when adapting words and concepts. Here it goes:

Quenya keyboard table

Obviously, here in Quenya101, we followed Dan Smith’s mapping because it flows natural when you type them. It’s not like a Roman alphabet mind would expect it to be (like qwerty positioning) but when it comes to Tengwar itself, it makes a whole lotta sense. All the translations shown above are presented delightfully in the image below. Click to make it big:

Tengwar full keyboard

This is the closest one can get when imagining how a keyboard would be in Middle-Earth or Valinor. It’s got all keys translated into Quenya, tengwar are positioned on their proper places (red ones are reached by SHIFT) and even math operations (+ – * /) appear in the num pad. Those are adapted using Sarati, an ancient elvish alphabet, which would correlate with Greek and its symbols so widely used in maths.

Troy, if you ever get this keyboard done, if it ever comes to existence, if you got on your hands on something like this, PLEASE show me! Please please please show me and tell me how you got it. I’d love to type things using that baby!




Filed under Elvish, Guide, Keyboard, Quenya

20 responses to “The All-Elvish Tengwar Keyboard

  1. Huong

    I love you forever

  2. Irena Barbosa Rocha

    Sorry, I can’t translate everything!

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  5. This is amazing! I want to buy one, or make one for myself somehow!

  6. Alassëa Eruvandë

    I love it! Definitely finding myself a keyboard to scrub the characters off for replacement :D. Just wondering though why the sarat for w was used for napanë?

    • That’s a reconstruction of the root of the prefix o- (together) which comes from WŌ and for flavor, it was written with the corresponding sarat. Got it?

  7. Ondo Carniliono

    The only downside to it is the ambiguous mathematical notation. It may become a problem to differentiate Σ (sum operator) and + (sum). But that’s just me being a nerdish nerd…. XD

  8. troytelford

    Curses… I had posted a comment but it was eaten by a grue (I can throw in Zork if I wanna…)

    I’ll absolutely forward information and the final layout files for the keyboard, as well as what I did to make it a reality, pictures, and so on. It may be a few weeks, but I’m determined to see it done.

    I’ll make two layouts: One for Dan Smith’s layout, and another for the unicode layout I prefer.

  9. Troy Telford

    Well, I won’t get that particular layout done — I’m personally attached to the Unicode layout – it “just flows” for me.

    That said, I’ll take this & generate the UTF layout for myself, generate a Dan Smith layout for anybody who wants it, and provide details for how to get one made.

    And I’ll absolutely send pictures after it’s made. Art is best when it’s shared.

    • Thank you so much, Troy!

      Your idea and contribution here sparkled many flames in many Tolkien fans here! Super awesome what you’ve done!

    • I’m more interested in the UTF layout for the freetengwar.sourceforge fonts, particularly T.Telcontar. I looked up the website where you’re having it made, though, and it looks a little out of my budget. I may just have to settle with defacing a cheap keyboard and painting on my own symbols.

  10. Ondo Carniliono

    This is FANTASTIC. I need it, how do I get it?

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