Adûnaic

adûn izindi batân tâidô ayadda

[the] road west once went straight, (lit.) west straight road once went

The 11th phrase of the Lament of Akallabêth (SD/247), whose word order varied considerably in the different drafts of the text. The first two words are the adjectives adûn “west” and izindi “straight, right, true”. They modify the subject batân “road, path, way”, which is in the normal-case rather than the subjective. This is consistent with the grammatical rules of Lowdham’s Report, since the verb ayadda has a pronominal suffix a- “*it” (SD/429).

The fourth word is an adverb tâidô “once, then”. The verb form yadda seems to be the past tense of #yad- “to go”, functioning here as a pluperfect (see SD/439). This makes sense in the narrative, since this sentence describes the previous state (the road west going straight to Valinor) while the next sentence uses the aorist tense to describe the current state (all roads being bent around the now-round world).

Tolkien’s glosses match the word order of the Adûnaic sentence: “west straight road once went”. This might be rendered in more ordinary English as “[the] road west once went straight”.

The previous (second draft) version of this sentence had more differences from the final version than any other sentence in the second draft (SD/312). It had a different word order, with the adjective izindi “straight” appearing directly before the verb, perhaps functioning as an adverb. It has ēluk instead of tâidô and the verb form yadda is missing the pronominal prefix a-. Unfortunately, Christopher Tolkien did not publish the English glosses for this sentence, so it is hard to decipher the meaning (if any) of these differences.

Adûnaic [SD/247; SD/312; VT24/12] Group: Eldamo. Published by