Primitive elvish


root. lie, lie, [ᴹ√] lie down; [ᴱ√] rest, dwell

Tolkien used this root for “lie (down)” for most of his life. It appeared as ᴱ√KAYA “lie, rest; dwell” in the Qenya Lexicon of the 1910s (QL/46), but in that document there was another root ᴱ√KAMA “lie down”, with the derivative ᴱQ. kama- “to lie down” (QL/44). There is no sign of ᴱ√KAMA¹ being used this way after the 1910s, and in the 1920s Early Qenya Grammar, the verb for “lie down” was kaita- (PE14/58), which in the Qenya Lexicon of the 1910s had the transitive sense “to place” (QL/44).

The root ᴹ√KAY “lie down” reappeared in The Etymologies of the 1930s (Ety/KAY), and it appeared again in the Quenya Verbal System of the 1940s as the basis for the verb ᴹQ. kaita- “to lie (down)” (PE22/126). The root and associated Quenya verb continued to appear in Tolkien’s later writings all the way up through the late 1960s, always with the sense “lie” (PE17/72; PE22/156).


  • Ad. khay- “to lie (down)”
  • kainu- “to lie down” ✧ PE22/136
    • ᴺQ. cainu- “to lie down, *bend down; [with locative] to endure, suffer (from)”
  • kaita- “to lie, be on the ground” ✧ PE22/136
  • Aq. caia- “[unglossed]”
  • Q. cairë “[unglossed]” ✧ PE17/101
  • Q. caita- “to lie (down)” ✧ PE17/072; PE22/156
  • Q. caita-to lay (transitive), to lay (transitive); [ᴱQ.] to place, lie down”
  • Q. cëa “*hedge” ✧ PE17/101
  • ᴺS. caeda- “to lie; to lay (down)”
  • S. caer “*flat isle on a river, [N.] flat isle on a river” ✧ PE17/101
  • S. cai “hedge” ✧ PE17/101

Element in

  • ᴺS. osgaef “surroundings, environs, milieu”


  • KAYA ✧ PE17/101
  • KAJ ✧ PE22/136
Primitive elvish [PE17/072; PE17/101; PE17/156; PE22/136; PE22/156] Group: Eldamo. Published by


verb. lie, be on the ground

Primitive elvish [PE 22:136] Group: Mellonath Daeron. Published by