Sindarin 

aer

adjective. holy

Sindarin [VT/44:21,24] Group: SINDICT. Published by

aer

noun. sea

Tolkien changed this word several times, see aear , gaear

Sindarin Group: SINDICT. Published by

aer

adjective. *hallowed, holy

This word appears in the phrase no aer i eneth lín “hallowed by thy name”, the second line of Ae Adar Nín, Tolkien’s Sindarin translation of the Lord’s Prayer. It is untranslated, but in context clearly means “✱hallowed, holy”. It is apparently the Sindarin cognate of Q. airë of similar meaning, which appears in the Quenya translation of the same prayer: Q. Átaremma.

Possible Etymology: David Salo suggested that aer may be a lenited form of the Sindarin adjective gaer (GS/231). Although N. gaer was glossed “dreadful” in The Etymologies (Ety/GÁYAS), in later writings Tolkien derived Q. airë “holy” from a similar root √GAY(AR) “awe, dread” (PM/363). The sense “dread” did not necessarily connote terribleness, but could also imply awe and respect. It was from this meaning of the root that words with the connotation “holy” arose, at least in Quenya (PM/363).

Bill Welden instead connected S. aer “holy” with the word aerlinn in the phrase Aerlinn in Edhil o Imladris (RGEO/62). This phrase is untranslated, but it is widely believed that aerlinn means “✱holy song” (VT44/24). Since aer cannot be lenited in aerlinn, this indicates that aer is the normal form of the word. In other writings, Tolkien derived Q. airë from primitive ✶airē “holiness, sanctity” (PE17/149), which could also be the origin of S. aer. That is the theory used here.

It is possible that this word appears in the name Aerandir, but that is rather speculative.

Conceptual Development: In the Gnomish Lexicon from the 1910s, there was a word G. air(in) “holy, sacred” (GL/18) marked archaic (†); this is probably the earliest precursor to S. aer. The form air reappeared in the Gnomish Lexicon slips, besides a new form eirin “holy” (PE13/113), reflecting Tolkien’s ongoing vacillation on the development of the diphthong ai.

Cognates

  • Q. airë “holy; sanctity, holiness”
  • Q. aira “holy, sanctified, holy, sanctified, [ᴱQ.] worshipful”

Derivations

  • AYA(N) “blessed; treat with awe/reverence, blessed; treat with awe/reverence; [ᴱ√] honour, revere”

Element in

aear

Sea

_n. _Sea, especially the Great (Western) Sea. Q. ear. nef aear, sí nef aearon lit. 'beyond the Sea, here beyond the Great Sea'. >> gaear, gaer

Sindarin [(PE17 Sindarin Corpus) PE17:20-1:27] -. Group: Parma Eldalamberon 17 Sindarin Corpus. Published by

aear

noun. sea

Tolkien changed this word several times, see gaear

Sindarin Group: SINDICT. Published by

aear

noun. sea

gaer

Sea

_n._Sea, especially the Great (Western) Sea. Shorter form of gaear.Q. aire (obsolete). >> aear, gaear

Sindarin [(PE17 Sindarin Corpus) PE17:27] < _gaı_9_ră _< GAY(AR). Group: Parma Eldalamberon 17 Sindarin Corpus. Published by

gaer

noun. sea

gaer

noun. sea

Sindarin [Ety/349, S/431, PM/363] Group: SINDICT. Published by

gaear

noun. sea

Sindarin [Ety/349, PM/363, RGEO/73] Group: SINDICT. Published by

gaear

Sea

_n. _Sea, especially the Great (Western) Sea. Shorter form gaer. Q. ear. >> aear, gaer

Sindarin [(PE17 Sindarin Corpus) PE17:27] < GAY(AR). Group: Parma Eldalamberon 17 Sindarin Corpus. Published by

gaear

noun. sea

A word for “sea” variously attested as gaear (PE17/027; PM/363; WJ/400), gaer (PE17/27; PE17/149), and aear (Let/386; RGEO/65) in later writings. Of these, I prefer gaear.

Possible Etymology: The presence or absence of the initial g- depends on whether the word’s root is √AY(AR) (as it appears in The Etymologies and some later writings) or √GAY(AR) (as it appears in other later writings). See the entry of the root √GAY(AR) for a discussion of this vacillation. Similarly, the form gaer appears primarily as an element in compounds, and can be explained as a reduced form of gaear in that context. For these reasons, this entry uses gaear as the ordinary Sindarin word for “sea”. This has the additional advantage of disambuiguating it from the adjective gaer “dreadful”.

Conceptual Development: This word appeared as N. oer or oear “sea” in The Etymologies of the 1930s, reflecting the Noldorin sound change of ai to oe (Ety/AY). However name for the “Great Sea” was N. {Belegar >>} Belegaer in the narratives of this period (LR/19), and the name N. Rhûnaer “Eastern Sea” appeared in draft Lord of the Rings maps from 1943 (TI/307). The element N. oer did appear in the day-of-the-week name N. Aroeren “✱Sea-day” in drafts of The Lord of the Rings appendices, but this was revised to S. Oraeron (PM/130, 138).

Cognates

  • Q. airë “sea” ✧ PE17/027
  • Q. ëar “sea, great sea, sea, great sea, [ᴹQ.] open sea; water” ✧ Let/386; PE17/027; PM/363; RGEO/65; SA/ëar; WJ/400

Derivations

  • AY(AR) “sea” ✧ Let/386
  • GAY(AR) “awe, dread; astound, make aghast; sea” ✧ PE17/027; PE17/149; SA/gaer
  • gayār “sea, the terrifier” ✧ PE17/027; PM/363; WJ/400
    • GAY(AR) “awe, dread; astound, make aghast; sea” ✧ PE17/027; PM/363; WJ/400

Element in

  • S. Aerandir “Sea-wanderer”
  • S. Belegaer “Great Sea” ✧ PM/363; SA/ëar; SA/gaer
  • S. gaearon “ocean, (lit.) great sea” ✧ PE17/027; PE17/149; PM/363; RGEO/65
  • S. Gaerdil “*Sea-lover” ✧ PE17/027
  • ᴺS. gaeruil “seaweed”
  • S. Gaerys “Ossë” ✧ SA/gaer
  • ᴺS. gaessarn “pearl, (lit.) sea-pebble/stone”
  • S. nef aear, sí nef aearon “here ... beyond the Sea, beyond the wide and sundering Sea” ✧ LotR/0238; PE17/027; RGEO/63; RGEO/64
  • S. Tirith Aear “Sea-ward Tower”

Phonetic Developments

DevelopmentStagesSources
gaı̯ră > gaer[gaira] > [gair] > [gaer]✧ PE17/027
Gayar- > gaear[gaiara] > [gaiar] > [gaear]✧ PM/363

Variations

  • aear ✧ Let/386; RGEO/65
  • gaer ✧ PE17/027; PE17/149; SA/ëar; SA/gaer
Sindarin [Let/386; LotR/0238; PE17/027; PE17/149; PM/363; RGEO/63; RGEO/64; RGEO/65; SA/ëar; SA/gaer; WJ/400] Group: Eldamo. Published by

aearon

noun. great sea, ocean

Tolkien changed this word several times, see gaearon

Sindarin Group: SINDICT. Published by

gaeron

noun. great sea, ocean

Sindarin [PM/363, PM/348, RGEO/72-73] Group: SINDICT. Published by

gaearon

noun. great sea, ocean

Sindarin [PM/363, PM/348, RGEO/72-73] Group: SINDICT. Published by

aear

sea

aear (ocean); pl. aeair. The shorter form aer (for N oer) is maybe best avoided since it can be confused with aer "holy", unless the latter is actually a lenited form of gaer. Forms with g-, representing an alternative concept of the word for ”sea”: gaear (i **aear) (ocean), pl. gaeair (i ngaeair = i ñaeair) (PM:363), also gaer (i **aer, no distinct pl. form except with article: i ngaer = i ñaer), but homophones of the latter mean "reddish, copper-coloured, ruddy" and also "dreadful, awful, fearful; holy".

gaer

holy

gaer (awful, fearful); lenited aear; no distinct pl. form. Note: homophones mean "reddish, copper-coloured, ruddy" and also "sea".