Must All Names End with Gender Suffix?

Frances #1019

I'm very much a beginner, so apologies if I miss some obvious things.

When I look at name translation, whether to Quenya or Sindarin, in this website or in Realelvish, it seems that the names are always translated using the formula noun/adjective+gender suffix (-wen etc). For example, in the most recent thread on name translation request, the name 'Elaria (joyful) Luna (moon)' is translated into two names, Glassiel and Ithilwen.

My question is: do all names must be translated that way? I do realise that the compability between the words is an important factor ('Glass' and 'Ithil' seem difficult to combine), but if the names can be combined into one, why not?

I'm curious because when I look at elven names in the books, it seems fine to do this. Like Melian (dear gift), Nimloth (white blossom), or Elwing (star-spray).

I'd be grateful for explanation!

2019-10-06T11:02:51+00:00
Cellindir #1020

Combining words (and sometimes roots) is often not a problem -- though there are a lot of rules that have to be taken into account. However, sometimes people want a name that has one meaning, which means that a gender suffix has to be applied, since a standalone word does not work as a name. The names Ingwe, Finwe and Elwe show this.

Thus a name such as Glassiel can work, but standalone **Glass does not. Melian, Nimloth and Elwing work as they are compounds, where a gender suffix is not needed.

2019-10-06T13:56:17+00:00
Elaran #1021

I will let Tolkien explain:

The mere names of things, such as 'hill, river, tree', and especially of unique things, as 'sun', were not used, at any rate without differentiation: [...] for that would imply some kind of total equation or identity. An Elf (or Man) would not be called Anar 'Sun' even to depict great glory or radiant vigour. [...] But an Elf or Man could be called Anárion, Anardil [etc.] [PE21/86]

In other words, "Flower", for example, cannot be used as a name, because it refers to another existing thing or concept in the world, but "Flower-daughter" can be used, due to its additional distinguishing element. So when translating names with no additional elements, the default addition (due to the explained necessity) is "son/daughter", which act more or less as masculine & feminine suffixes. But, for example, when there is an additional element like "white flower" rather than just "flower", then Nimloth "White-flower" can work as a name, with or without any further additions.

2019-10-06T19:22:24+00:00