Q. ar ámen apsenë úcaremmar “and forgive us our trespasses”

Q. ar ámen apsenë úcaremmar “and forgive us our trespasses”

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The seventh line of Átaremma, Tolkien’s Quenya translation of the Lord’s Prayer. The first word is ar “and”, followed by a combination of the imperative particle á and the (dative) second person plural pronoun men “[for] us”. Next follows apsene, the aorist form of the verb apsen- “forgive”. The final word úcaremmar “our trespasses” is the first person plural exclusive possessive form of úcarë, with the usual plural suffix -r indicating the possessed noun was also plural (“trespasses” as opposed to “trespass”).

Decomposition: Broken into its constituent elements, this phrase would be:

ar á-me-n apsenë úcare-mma-r = “*and (imperative)-us-for forgive trespass-our-(plural)”

Conceptual Development: Earlier versions of the prayer used a different verb avatyar- for “forgive”, in what was probably a suffixed imperative form avatyara (I-IIa) or ávatyara (IIb-IV). In version I-IV, this was followed by the ablative form mello “[from] us” of the pronoun me.

Earlier versions of the prayer used a variety of words for “trespass”: lucassë (I), lucië (IIa-IIb), luhta (III-IV deleted) and rohta (III-IV). Most instances used the same possessive suffix -mma² “our” as the final verion of the prayer, but version III used an independent pronoun menya, in its plural form menye to agree with the plural noun “trespasses”.

avatyara ávatyara ámen
mello apsene
lucassemmar i luciemmar menye {luhtar >>} rohtar {luhtammar >>} rohtammar úcaremmar

References ✧ VT43/8-12



ar “and” ✧ VT43/18
á “imperative particle” ✧ VT43/19
me “us (exclusive)” dative ✧ VT43/19 (mello); VT43/19 (men)
#apsen- “to remit, release, forgive” aorist ✧ VT43/18 (apsene)
#úcarë “*sin, debt, trespass” 1st-pl-exclusive-poss plural ✧ VT43/19 (úcaremmar)
#lucassë “*debt, trespass” 1st-pl-exclusive-poss plural ✧ VT43/19 (lucassemmar)
#avatyar- “*to forgive, (lit.) do away with” imperative ✧ VT43/18 (avatyara); VT43/18 (ávatyara)
“the” ✧ VT43/19
#lucië “*debt, trespass” 1st-pl-exclusive-poss plural ✧ VT43/19 (luciemmar)
menya “*our (exclusive)” plural ✧ VT43/19 (menye)
#luhta “*debt, trespass” plural ✧ VT43/19 (luhtar); VT43/19 (luhtammar)
#rohta “*debt, trespass” plural ✧ VT43/19 (rohtar); VT43/19 (rohtammar)

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