Quenya 


kindle, cause to sparkle

tinta- vb. "kindle, cause to sparkle", cf. Tintallë (TIN, SA:tin, MR:388)


verb. to kindle, cause to spark, to kindle, cause to spark, [ᴹQ.] make to spark

A word for “to kindle, cause to spark” (MR/388; PE17/69), a causative verb form based on the root √TIN (PE17/22, 69). Its most notable use is in the name Tintallë “(Star) Kindler” for Varda.

Conceptual Development: ᴹQ. tinta- “to kindle, make to spark” appeared in The Etymologies of the 1930s with the same derivation (Ety/TIN), and the verb’s introduction probably coincided with Tolkien’s invention of Varda’s sobriquet.

Neo-Quenya: For purpose of Neo-Quenya, I’d limit this verb’s use to “kindle” = “make a spark”. For “kindle” = “set on fire” I’d instead use [ᴹQ.] narta-.


  • TIN “sparkle, spark, sparkle, spark, [ᴱ√] twinkle, [ᴹ√] emit slender (silver pale) beams” ✧ PE17/022; SA/tin

Element in

  • Q. Tintallë “(Star) Kindler” ✧ MR/388; PE17/022; PE17/069; PE17/069; PE17/069; PE17/069; SA/tin


tin-“to spark, glitter, to spark, glitter, [ᴹQ.] glint, [ᴱQ.] gleam, shine as a star”
-ta“causative verb suffix”

Phonetic Developments

TIN > tinta-[tinta-]✧ PE17/022
tin- > tinta[tinta-]✧ SA/tin


  • tinta ✧ MR/388; MR/471; SA/tin
Quenya [MR/388; MR/471; PE17/022; PE17/069; SA/tin] Group: Eldamo. Published by



Tintallë noun "Kindler", a title of Varda who kindled the stars (TIN, Nam, RGEO:67). From tinta- "kindle, make to sparkle" (MR:388). According to PE17:69, the form "should be Tintalde", apparently because -llë was at the time the ending for plural "you" and Tintallë could be taken as meaning *"you kindle" rather than as a noun "Kindler". However, Tolkien later changed the pronominal suffix, eliminating the clash of forms while leaving Tintallë correct (after the revision, it was *tintaldë itself that would be the verb "you kindle").



Tintanië noun "Kindler" = Varda (TIN; Tintánië under TAN, which according to VT46:17 Tolkien interpreted both as "Star-maker" and "Star-making")



narta- vb. "kindle" (VT45:37)



tunda- vb. "kindle" (LT1:270; rather tinta- or narta- in Tolkien's later Quenya)


verb. to kindle, to kindle, [ᴹQ.] (cause to) shine, light up, [ᴱQ.] set light to

This causative verb meaning “kindle, cause to shine” was based on the root √KAL “light; shine” and had a lengthy history in Tolkien’s Elvish languages. ᴱQ. kalta- “kindle, set light to” first appeared in the Qenya Lexicon of the 1910s under the early root ᴱ√KALA “shine golden” (QL/44), but in The Etymologies of the 1930s ᴹQ. kalta- was only glossed “shine” (Ety/KAL). However in the Quenya Verbal System of the 1940s kaltā́ was given as an example of causative verbs and glossed “cause to shine, light up, or kindle (lamp etc.)” (PE22/114). In Common Eldarin: Verb Structure from the early 1950s (primitive) kalta- was glossed “cause to shine, kindle” (PE22/156). This verb also appeared in Late Notes on Verb Structure (LVS) from 1969 as an element in the adjective Q. lacaltaima “not possible to be kindled”.


  • kalta- “cause to shine, kindle”
    • KAL “light; shine, be bright, light; shine, be bright, [ᴱ√] shine golden” ✧ PE22/129

Element in

  • Q. lacaltaima “not possible to be kindled” ✧ PE22/156


  • kalta- ✧ PE22/156



turu- (2) vb. "kindle" (a "Qenya" form from LT1:270; rather narta- or tinta- in LotR-style Quenya)



-ldë (2) feminine agental suffix. Tolkien at one point commented that Vardas title Tintallë "Kindler" should be Tintaldë because the ending -llë was rather the suffix for plural "you" (PE17:69). Since this pronominal suffix -llë was later revised to -ldë, it is now the ending of Tintaldë itself that would be potentially problematic.


one of several suffixes indicating feminine agent

-llë (1) "one of several suffixes indicating feminine agent", as in Tintallë "kindler" vs. the verb tinta- "to kindle". In the source _(PE17:69) _Tolkien noted that -llë was little used because of the clash with the pronominal ending -llë (see #2 below), but the latter ending was later revised.