pé noun "lip", dual peu "the two lips, the mouth-opening" (VT39:9; VT47:12, 35). In an earlier source, the Etymologies, pé was glossed "mouth" (PEG), whereas in PE17:126 it is more specifically "the closed mouth".
noun. (closed) mouth; lip, (closed) mouth; the two lips [as dual], lip
A word for the (closed) mouth (PE21/70; PE17/126) which Tolkien sometimes used as “lip” (VT39/9; VT47/12); see below. Its dual form peu referred to “the two lips, the mouth-opening” (VT39/9), as opposed to a single lip which seems to be Q. pempë (PE17/126).
Conceptual Development: This word dates all the way back to the Qenya Lexicon of the 1910s, where Tolkien gave ᴱQ. pē “the two lips, the (closed) mouth” from primitive ᴱ√PĒ (QL/72). In the contemporaneous Gnomish Lexicon, ᴱQ. pê was simply glossed “mouth” and was connected to G. beg “chin” (GL/22), indicating that the early root might actually have been ✱ᴱ√BĒ since primitive initial voiced stops were unvoiced in Early Qenya.
ᴱQ. pē “mouth” reappeared in a list of body parts from the 1920s (PE14/117), and ᴹQ. pé “mouth” appeared again in the Declension of Nouns from the early 1930s as an example of vocalic monosyllabic noun from primitive ✶pē (PE21/38); at the beginning of this document the primitive form was glossed “mouth, lips” (PE21/1). In The Etymologies of the 1930s it was ᴹQ. pé “mouth” derived from the root ᴹ√PEG (Ety/PEG); this entry had a difficult-to-read word inserted before its gloss, possibly “outer”, so perhaps the meaning was revised to “outer mouth” (EtyAC/PEG).
In the 1950s and 60s, the word pé was generally derived from √PEÑ (PE19/102; PE21/70; VT39/11). In notes associated with the Quendi and Eldar essay of 1959-60, Q. pē was glossed “lip” and its dual peu referred to “the two lips, the mouth-opening” (VT39/9). In 1964 notes on parts of the mouth Tolkien glossed pē as “the closed mouth” (PE17/126), but in notes from 1968 it was again glossed “lip” (VT47/12). In notes on monosyllabic nouns from this period Tolkien said ✶pē “lip” was a primitive monosyllabic vocalic noun, but that it was reduplicated to ✶pē̆pe (VT47/35). In green-ink revision to Outline of Phonology from around 1970, Tolkien again affirmed the original primitive form was pe(ñ), though the ñ was lost very early (PE19/102 note #102).
Neo-Quenya: For purposes of Neo-Quenya, I would use pé as a word meaning “mouth”, more specifically for “closed mouth” as opposed to the general word for mouth: Q. anto. For a single “lip” I would use pempë, but I would use peu as a dual form indicating both lips, whether open or closed. All these words are in general use, but pé is also used as a technical term in linguistic discussions for the close mouth in formation of consonants such as voiced and voiceless stops.
- ᴺQ. pérappa “bridle, (lit.) lip-rope”
Development Stages Sources ✶peñ > pē [peŋ] > [peɣ] > [pē] ✧ PE19/102 √peñe > pē [peŋe] > [peɣe] > [pē] ✧ VT39/11 ✶peñū > peu [peŋū] > [peɣū] > [peu] ✧ VT39/11 ✶pē > pé [pē] ✧ VT47/12
- pē ✧ PE19/102; PE21/70; VT39/09; VT39/11
#pempë noun "lip" (attested only in pl. pempi, PE17:126); cf. pé.
A word for “lip” appearing only in its plural form pempi in 1964 notes on the parts of the mouth, where it was related to Q. pé “the closed mouth” (PE17/126). In 1968 notes on monosyllabic nouns, Tolkien said the primitive ✶pē “lip” was reduplicated to ✶pē̆pe; this is likely connected to an irregular plural form péti in the (untranslated) phrase et i péti “✱out of the mouth/lips”, with dissimilation of the second p to t as suggested by Patrick Wynne (VT47/35): ✱pēpi > péti. The 1964 form pempe is probably also the result of reduplication, likely ✱peñ-peñ > pempe(ñ), since √PEÑ was the usual root for “lip” (PE21/70; PE19/102).
Conceptual Development: The earliest “lip” word was ᴱQ. kilme from the Qenya Lexicon of the 1910s under the early root ᴱ√KILI “edge” (QL/46), a form also appearing in the contemporaneous Poetic and Mythological Words of Eldarissa (PME/46). A similar form ᴱQ. kilma “lip” appeared in a list of body parts from the 1920s, along with an alternate word ᴱQ. kaile “lip” (PE14/117). There are no signs of these early lip-words after that point.
Neo-Quenya: Tolkien also sometimes used Q. pé for “lip”; see that entry for discussion. For purposes of Neo-Quenya, I recommend using Q. pé mainly for “closed mouth” and pempë for a single “lip”. However, the dual form peu of pé was used of “the two lips, the mouth-opening” (VT39/9), which I would use for “a pair of lips for one person (open or closed)”, functioning as an irregular dual of pempë.
- ᴺS. pemp “lip”
- √PEÑ “*lip, mouth”
- Q. et i péti “*out of the lips, out of the mouth” ✧ VT47/35
the two lips, the mouth-opening
peu dual noun "the two lips, the mouth-opening" (VT39:9); the dual of pé, q.v.
ópa noun "mouth", in the sense of mouth-opening with lips as the edges (PE17:126)
carpa ("k") (1) noun "mouth", including lips, teeth, tongue etc. (PE17:126); also used for "language", in particular the phonetic system.Cf. náva and páva.
páva noun "mouth" (including tongue, lips and teeth). Apparently changed by Tolkien to náva, q.v. (VT39:19)
- Q. pávatengwë “consonant” ✧ VT39/19
noun. mouth, mouth [as a thing for eating]; [ᴱQ.] jaw
The basic Quenya word for “mouth”, appearing as the name of tengwa #13 (4) in The Lord of the Rings Appendix E (LotR/1123). It is likely derived from the root √MAT “eat” from primitive ✱amtō, and hence refers to the mouth as a thing for eating. Quenya has a number of other more specialized words for the mouth, however, such as Q. pé for the closed mouth, Q. ópa for the mouth opening, Q. songa for the interior of the mouth and Q. náva for the entire mouth apparatus (tongue, lips and teeth) used for speech.
Conceptual Development: ᴹQ. anto “mouth” first appeared in notes on The Feanorian Alphabet from the 1940s, where it replaced ᴹQ. anta “jaws” (PE22/50 note #50). In the Qenya Lexicon of the 1910s, ᴱQ. anto (antu-) was itself glossed “jaw” and was based on the early root ᴱ√MATA “eat” (QL/31, 59).
- √MAT “eat”
- ᴺQ. antolatta “bridle, (lit.) mouth-strap”
anto (1) noun "mouth", also name of tengwa #13 (Appendix E)
náva ("ñ")noun "mouth", apparently not only the lips but also the inside of the mouth (VT39:13 cf. 8). Possibly, but probably not, the same element that is translated "hollow" in Návarot, q.v.
songa noun "mouth", in the sense of "interior cavity behind the teeth, containing tongue" (PE17:126)