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LAL root. “laugh”

LAL root. “laugh”

A root for “laugh” appearing in notes written around 1959 (PE17/159), likely connected to S. Lalaith “Laughter”, the name of Túrin’s deceased sister (S/198). Some possible precursors appeared in the Qenya Lexicon of the 1910s: unglossed ᴱ√LALA whose derivatives had to do with babbling (QL/50), and ᴱ√KAKA “laugh” with derivatives in both Qenya and Gnomish (QL/44; GL/24).

Tolkien gave a different primitive form ✶glada- as the basis for “laugh” words in The Shibboleth of Fëanor from the late 1960s; this produced S. glað- but still resulted in Q. lala- (PM/359). This new primitive had two problems (1) it is not compatible with S. Lalaith and (2) it shows a rather unusual assimilation of primitive d to preceding l in Quenya rather than the normal change to r: ✶(g)lada- > laða- > Q. lala- instead of **lara-. Elsewhere such assimilation did not occur, for example Q. lerembas < ✶led(e)mbasse (PE17/52).

Thus for purposes of Neo-Eldarin I think it is preferable to assume √LAL was the root for “laugh” words. However, I also think it is worth retaining √GLAD as a Sindarin-only root for similar concepts, perhaps “guffaw” and “joke”, given the limited semantic space we have in Elvish roots.

References ✧ PE17/159, 182





ᴱ√KAKA root. “laugh”

A root in the Qenya Lexicon of the 1910s glossed “laugh” with derivatives like ᴱQ. kaka-/G. cacha- of the same meaning (QL/44; GL/24). It was likely made obsolete by later roots for “laugh” like √LAL.

Reference ✧ QL/44 ✧ “laugh”


ᴱ√LALA root. “*babble”

See √LAL for discussion.

Reference ✧ QL/50