Category Archives: Phonetics

Finns finished fishing the finishing Finnish fish…

Oh, sweet melodious Finnish! We owe you so much! Quenya owes you so much. It’s like a distant uncle who although he lives far away, is most cherished and beloved by his little niece, Quenya. Below, you’ll find some tongue twisters in FINNISH (for fun and curiosity) just to mess with your ears while enjoying the nice phonetics of this beautiful language.  By the way….can you repeat them all? OUCH! Go for it!

 

Appilan pappilan piski paksuposki pakkas kapsäkin ja pinkaisi juoksuun

(The dog from the presbytery of Appilan has packed its bags and started running)

This sentence makes no sense at all! Specially when we all know the dog from the presbytery of Appilan has only 3 legs and runs very badly.

Appilan pappilan apupapin papupata pankolla kiehuu ja kuohuu

(The beans’ bread of the deacon of Appilan boils and seethes all over the cooker)

Well, definitely, some serious shit happens in Appilan!!! The place to be!

Kokoo kokoon koko kokko! Koko kokkoko? Koko kokko

(Kokko, collect all the wood to make a fire! All the wood? Yes, all the wood)

Apparently, Kokko and all those almost-homonyms can mean different things altogether. Also, ‘ko’ indicates a question so it’s not quite hard to have a weird sentence like that above.

Hurskastelevaisehkollaismaisellisuuksissaankohankin hän toimi?

(I wonder if he did this in order to show that he was able to have an attitude a little bit Hippocratic?)

Well, you know…I often wonder the same thing!

Keksijä Keksi keksi keksin keksittyään keksin keksijä Keksi keksi keksin keksityksi

(The inventor Cookie has invented the cookie. After Cookie invented the cookie, he invented that the cookie was invented.)

The same principle of Kokko applies here. Anyway, I’d like to know more about this inventor…

Lentokonesuihkuturbiinimoottoriapumekaanikkoaliupseerioppilas

(?)

The hugest word in Finnish dictionary! 61 letters which basically (emphasis on “basically”) is a military term used in the Air Force to describe a engineer specialized in aircraft jet engines.

Olin sedälläni seitsemän vuotta kodossa renkinä

(I was the maid of my uncle for seven years at his home)

Well, where’s the tongue twister? Here the trick is different. If you pronounce this sentence a bit wrongly, you end up meaning: “I worked seven years in my anus”. Better watch your mouth!!!

Riiuuyoaie

(!)

And the Finns strike back! This is the word with most consecutive vowels in the World! It’s known exactly what it means but it refers to night time. Death to consonants!

 
Inspired by topito.com

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Q101Tight

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Psalm in Quenya

bible-pageIt doesn’t matter what you think about the Bible, it is by far the most read book of all time. It’s ancient, it has solid principles to rely on even to this day and although it was written by more than 40 different human beings, the 66 books which form the Bible remain internally accurate and with one single theme from the beginning to the end. When you really read and study it, you realize no human being would be able to write such a book. It’s beyond our mortal ability. I have a deep respect for this book and appreciation that nowadays we can so easily read it! You know, there was a time people were burnt and killed methodically for trying to read the Bible.

But elves don’t know that. In Arda, there’s no Bible. Their history is very different. To mend this huge shame, why not starting to translate a little bit so elves can taste the Bible in their mother tongue? Just for starters, here comes the famous, widespread Psalm 23.

Psalm 23

Lin Meldonwa

  1. Yáwë ná mámandillinya. Meruvan munta.
  2. Salquëa nesselessë cariryen caita; ara mára senda nanda tentaryen.
  3. Fëanya ceutas. Tulyaryen tiennar failaleva rá esseryan.
  4. Ananta vantan nuruhuinenandessë, rucin lá ulcallo, an nalyë óni; tulwë ar vandilelya nar i nati yar asyar ni.
  5. Manwal opo ni sarno opo queni yar tanar henulca nin. Millonen amániel casinya; yulmanya ná mai quanta.
  6. Tancavë marië ar mára melmë intë sacuvar ni ilyë rer cuilenyava; ar maruvan coassë Yáweva tennoio.

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Q101Tight

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X101

Extra101

Public announcement

Starting this December, 1st, 2013, people will have a new Fast Line feature. It’ll be called eXtra101 (X101) where you’ll get MUCH MORE than what Fast Line already gives you. After you’re familiar with Fast Line rules, read below what’s different with X101 and the good things that are kept the same!

What’s the same:

  • 101-hour delivery time guaranteed!
  • Answers given publicly through the site.
  • Accuracy primed so you get the best there is concerning Quenya syntaxis, name’s etymology and so on.

What’s different:

You get MORE, always more according to the request you make.

Names

Poem & Prose

How do we say (…) in Quenya?

Attention: My special day in the Elvish Calendar does not participate in the X101 new feature.

Crazy, huh? Yeah! Fast Line is a huge success and X101 will only give you MORE!

Arwen

If you want it EXTRA, come and get it!

If you’re ready for the extra elvish feeling, get it below. Don’t forget to leave a very specific message attached with your Paypal donation (or send an email to me). If you don’t specify which elvish pack and huge elvish font you want, it’ll be randomly chosen for you.

Do you want more? MUCH MUCH MORE? Then click here!

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Q101Tight

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Filed under Ads, Guide, Linguistics, News, Phonetics, Poem, Prose, Quenya, Tengwar, Tolkien

Tengwar Klingon Mode

Star-Trek-Poster

A couple of weeks ago, I watched the new Star Trek movie, Into the Darkness and one part that captured my attention was the conversation in Klingon. I cannot explain why but I was never interested in this artificial language. The sound is orcish-like, the writing is wEIrd anD oDD and I was never a Star Trek fan to be honest.

Anyway, I recognize the power of this franchise and the respect it deserves as it’s a pretty solid stuff. I have already dedicated some space here for Vulcan (which got an outstanding alphabet) and now the time has come for Klingon!

Tengwar Klingon Mode

KlingonTengwar

 

What do you need to understand the image above? If you don’t have the right tools, it may end up looking like an esoteric topic. Here’s what you need:

  • Understanding of the Klingon sound inventory
  • Familiarity with Appendix E of The Lord of the Rings, particularly section II
  • Some understanding of phonology
  • Return of the King
  • HolQeD Vol.1, No.1

I fail when it comes to Klingon knowledge. I was doing some research to understand better the phonetics, and to me it sounds much like Arabic. (This is a rookie view. If you know better, please comment below, I’d be happy to learn more)

klingon

As explained in Appendix E of The Lord of the Rings, the Tengwar are divided into four series and six grades, with additional letters added. Series I was used for the “dental” series in all modes, and Series II the labial series. The application of Series III and IV varied. Grades 1 and 2 were used for unvoiced and voiced stops, Grades 3 and 4 for unvoiced and voiced “spirants” (fricatives and affricates), and Grades 5 and 6 varied, usually for nasals and weak or semi-vocalic consonants.

Because Klingon has such a varied set of articulation points and manners, I wondered how to assign the series and grades for Klingon. I went back to HolQeD Vol.1, No.1, to Allan C. Wechsler’s excellent, though very technical, article “First Steps Towards a Phonological Theory of Klingon.” Wechsler examines the consonant system of Klingon and determines that it has 7 or 8 distinctive points of articulation, as well as 11 different manners of speaking at these points, but that most of the possible consonants created by this matrix aren’t used in Klingon. He then postulates a consolidated matrix that might apply to Klingons, given “relatively shallow production rules” (e.g., p and b are bilabials and v is a labial-dental, but he’s going to say that they can all be called “labials” and that they are produced in a similar enough fashion as to be classified together).

This idea reduces the table into one with only four articulation points. That’s the number of Tengwar series! We will accept Wechsler’s hypothesis as correct for the purpose of creating this mode.

We still have too many manners, though. There are unvoiced and voiced stops, unvoiced and voiced fricatives, unvoiced and voiced affricates, nasals, glides, a trill, a lateral, and a lateral affricate. We’re going to need those extra Tengwar letters.

Assigning characters

As per the matrix, Series I will be the “Apical” series, series II will be the “Labial” series, series III will be the “Dorsal” series, and series IV will be the “Glottal” series. Grade 1 will be the unvoiced stops, and Grade 2 the voiced stops. Grades 3 and 4 are problematical; I’ll return to them in a moment. Grades 5 and 6 will be as the common Elvish modes: 5 is for nasals, 6 is for “weak” consonants.

When Tolkien used the term “spirant”, he meant both fricatives and affricates. But we have, for example, two unvoiced dorsal spirants in Klingon, one a fricative (H) and one an affricate (Q). They can’t both use the same letter! Fairly arbitrarily, I’m going to assign Q to letter No. 29: Quenya used No. 11 for the same sound as Klingon H, so I’ll keep No. 11 as H. No. 33 was an alternate for No. 11 (though I’d hardly call it a “weaker” sound, which is what it was usually used for), so Q will go on No. 33. Likewise, we have a conflict with S and ch (both of which want to go on No.9). Since No. 29 typically represented s, I’ll again arbitrarily put Klingon S there, leaving ch to go on No. 9. That leaves the rest of the “spirants” free and clear. For dealing with vowels (see below), we’ll also want to use No. 30: a variant ofNo. 29 that is more convenient when using tehtar.

This particular choice is desirable for another reason: H has a voiced counterpart (gh), as does ch (j), but Q and S. don’t. Better to put these down below rather than the others.

So, let’s map those sounds!

Curious? MORE? Check the source where this post was based! Here: http://www.trimboli.name/KlingonTengwar.html I cannot help it but to congratulate the one who devised this Mode. Klingon is harsh and I bet it wasn’t that easy to come up with this particular Tengwar Mode!

Bonus Round

Listen Klingon and and let’s see if you’ll end up singing like him!

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Almárë Speaks: Namárië

I recently recorded myself reciting the poem Namárië, or Altariel Nainië Lóriendessë.

It’s not perfect (far from it I imagine), but it was fun to do and now I’m more familiar with the audio software perhaps I’ll do some more recordings of various things (if anyone has any requests, do let me know).

Á lasta sís: Namárië.

The stress pattern I attempted to follow was (long vowels are written with double vowels instead of accents):

al-ta-ri-ELL-o  NAI-ni-e   loo-ri-en-DESS-ë

AI!   LAUR-i-e   LANT-ar   LASS-I   SUU-ri-nen

YEE-ni   uu-NOO-ti-me   ve   RAA-mar   ALD-ar-on

YEE-ni   ve   LINT-e   YULD-ar   a-VAAN-i-er

mi   o-ro-MARD-I   LISS-e   mi-ru-VOO-re-va

an-DUU-ne   PEL-la   VAR-do   TEL-lu-mar

nu   LUIN-i   YASS-en   TINT-il-ar   i   EL-en-i

oo-MA-ryo   ai-re-TAA-ri   LII-ri-nen

SII   man   I   YUL-ma   nin   en-QUAN-tu-va

an   sii   tint-ALL-e   VAR-da   oi-o-LOSS-e-o

ve   FA-nyar   MAA-ryat   el-en-TAA-ri   ORT-a-ne

ar   I-lye   TI-er   un-du-LAA-ve   LUMB-u-le

ar   sin-da-noor-i-ELL-o   CAI-ta   MORN-i-e

I   fal-ma-LINN-ar   IMB-e   met   ar   HII-thi-e

un-TUU-pa   ca-la-CI-ryo   MII-ri   OI-a-le

sii   VAN-wa   NAA   roo-MELL-o   VAN-wa

VAL-i-mar

na-MAAR-i-e   NAI   hi-ru-VA-lye   VAL-i-mar

NAI   E-lye   HI-ru-va   na-MAAR-i-e

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L101

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Eärendil finds his harbour

Eärendil around the worldHe did it! Eärendil did it! This is the last part of ‘Eärendil series’ where we sailed around Google Translator listening to several languages pronunciation of this single Quenya word Eärendil and comparing it to Quenya phonetics. Which one is the closest of all? Follow this ride and find what Eärendil has found! Surprised or not, you’ll be aided to keep in mind the correct Quenya pronunciation! 

(While you read this guide, go to http://translate.google.com type Eärendil and listen each language mentioned below! A cool and easy tool to aid you with phonetics)

Portuguese

4 stars

Portuguese shares many phonemes with Spanish and that contributed for a high rate here. We got EÄRENDI here, so almost on the spot!

Norwegian

4 stars

Oh yeah, baby! Norwegian got a solid pronunciation like Hungarian did. The first E is too open, but we got ÄRENDIL pretty good.

Korean

2 stars

Well, as long as Far-East is concerned, Korean is good! It has firm vowels and some consonants stand up for the task. We got a ÄREND in Korea!

Slovak

2 stars

That’s another language I know nothing about and have never heard before. I can’t say more about its phonetics but in this exercise, we have a RENDI here.

Greek

4 stars

4 stars? Really? YES! Greek kicks ass! Quenya was based on Greek after all. But there’s a trick because of the alphabet. You gotta type Εαρεντιλ (Earentil) so you can hear EÄRENDIL. See? Whole word!!! Unfortunately, the stress is not correct, otherwise it’d be a 5-star!

Finnish

5 stars

Obviously, Eärendil finishes his tour in the land of the Finns! Finnish got it all! Pronunciation, stress. This is IT! It IS Quenya pronunciation of 

EÄRENDIL!

Eärendil finishes

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Eärendil comes and sails away

Eärendil

Eärendil doesn’t stop! Now it’s time to visit another places, check another languages. Resuming from our previous post, let’s listen different native people speaking their languages (through the use of Google Translator tool) and compare how close that pronunciation is to actual Quenya. Don’t forget: The word we take for our ride is Eärendil!

(While you read this guide, go to http://translate.google.com type Eärendil and listen each language mentioned below! A cool and easy tool to aid you with phonetics)

Italian

3 stars

No big surprise as Italian is a Latin based language like Quenya is. We got a good pronunciation of RENDIL here.

German

2 stars

German has a solid Quenya-like vowels resemblance, but the advantage stops there. Consonants are another matter. We got a good ENDIL here.

Dutch

2 stars

Dutch sounds like German (ok, that’s a superficial view) and for Quenya phonetics, Dutch behaves the same way as German too. There’s an ENDIL there and nothing more.

Russian

1 star

No, no. Russian is just not meant for Quenya. They wouldn’t get along. I heard a good REN even though the stress is absolutely different.

Hungarian

4 stars

Fantastic surprise! Hungarian nailed 99% of the word! It’s ÄRENDIL straight up man! A pity the initial E is too open for Quenya standards.

Spanish

4 stars

Spanish deserves a 5-star rate! Its phonetics is excellent for Quenya! Unfortunately, there’s a lil’ slip with the ERENDIL we hear there. Perhaps some regional variant wouldn’t miss the ä.

Wait! It’s not over yet! Eärendil is a mariner, he likes travelling and won’t stop his voyage just now! Stay tuned and sail away with him in the next episode of….

Eärendil around the World!

Eärendil around the world

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Eärendil around the World

EärendilShall we have an interesting exercise? It’s easy, quick and a pretty interesting tool for the ones who crave to listen to Quenya!

As it’s known, there is no online Quenya translator (that I am aware of, at least). Quenya is an artificial limited language and that poses double extra toughness for one to create such resource. I’m very happy about that as there are too many people pretending to know something about “elvish” with an online translator….I think you can picture the hell it would be.

But I digressed. I mentioned online translators here due to the resourcefulness of the ones available right now. Google Translator, the most famous, I guess; gives you the opportunity to listen many languages spoken by native people. That’s an A+!

Elvish Google

Now, here’s the trick: Which pronunciation would be closer to Quenya? For advanced students, that’s quite easy to answer, but let’s ride together and rate each language based on their phonetics. The word to be used as example is: Eärendil. The number of stars stand for how close that particular pronunciation resembles Quenya itself.

(While you read this guide, go to http://translate.google.com type Eärendil and listen each language mentioned below! A cool and easy tool to aid you with phonetics)

English

1 star

Awful! Nothing to do with Quenya. The only letter that sounds like Quenya is the D in Eärendil. Basically, English teaches you how NOT to pronounce Quenya!

French

1 star

Ouch! French may sound fancy but not for Quenya. We got only the DI in Eärendil sounding decently, the rest, oh no!

Czech

3 stars

Surprise, surprise! I know nothing about Czech but the sound is quite good for Quenya. We got the RENDI nailed in Eärendil.

Turkish

2 stars

Well, I have already heard a bit of Turkish and it definitely doesn’t sound like Quenya. Some phonemes are close though and here we got REN in Eärendil.

Danish

1 star

Uh-uh, not Danish! Again, there’s only the in Eärendil, nothing more.

Swedish

3 stars

Almost Swedish! Well, ALL phonemes are there, but the stress is not good. It falls in the last syllable and that’s weird (i.e. wrong) in Quenya!

Which countries Eärendil will visit next? Which ones will his Quenya ear be fond of? Stay tuned and don’t miss our next episode of….

Eärendil around the World!

Eärendil

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