Isil (þ) place-name "Moon" (FS; SA:sil, Appendix E, SD:302, SIL; also defined as "the Sheen" under THIL); Isildur masc. name., *"Moon-servant" (SA:sil, Appendix A, NDŪ)
noun. Moon, (lit.) Sheen
The usual name for the Moon in Quenya, also translated as “Sheen” (LR/240; MR/130), from an augmented form of the root √THIL (Let/425; Ety/THIL). This word is most likely the proper name of the Moon, analogous to English “Luna”. Compare this to Q. Rána “Wayward”, which is more descriptive of the nature of the body and hence closer to “Moon” (and “moon”).
Conceptual Development: The precursor to this name seems to be ᴱQ. Sil (Sill-) “moon” from the Qenya Lexicon of the 1910s, derived from the early root ᴱ√SILI (QL/83). The root had various derivatives having to do with “gleam(ing)”, but in the contemporaneous narratives ᴱQ. Sil was translated “(silver) rose” (LT1/192 and 197 note #17). There was also ᴱQ. Silmo as a masculinized name for “moon” (QL/83), which seems to be the ordinary word for “moon” in the English-Qenya Dictionary of the 1920s (PE15/75).
The name ᴹQ. Isil first appeared in early versions of the tales of Númenor from the 1930s (LR/41). The derivation given above appeared in The Etymologies of the 1930s (Ety/THIL) and again in a 1972 letter to Richard Jeffery (Let/425).
- S. Ithil “Moon” ✧ Let/425; LotR/1114; PE17/039; PE17/121; SA/sil
Development Stages Sources √THIL > Isil [itʰil] > [iθil] > [isil] ✧ Let/425
- Ithil ✧ NM/280