Q. Olwë m.
Younger brother of Elwë (Thingol), who became the leader of the Teleri after Elwë was lost (S/58). The name is ancient and of unclear meaning. Its final element is the suffix -wë common in ancient names, and the initial element is generally assumed to be the root √OL associated with plants and dreams (PM/340).
Conceptual Development: In the earliest Lost Tales, the leader of the third tribe of Elves was named Sol. Ellu or Ellu Melemno (LT1/155). At this early stage the character was distinct from the contemporanerous character that would develop into Thingol (G. Tinwelint). The name Ellu changed to (Telerin?) Elu with one l in very early Silmarillion drafts (SM/13, 85), with a Qenya cognate of ᴱQ. Elwe.
In the Annals of Beleriand from the 1930s, this ᴹQ. Elwe was identified as the brother of Thingol (SM/264) and so remained in Silmarillion drafts of that period (LR/217). It was not until Silmarillion revisions from the 1950s-60s that the name Q. Elwë was assigned to Thingol and his brother was became Solwë >> Olwë (MR/82, 169).
References ✧ LRI; LT1I/Ellu, Olwë; LT2I; MR/169; MRI/Olwë, Solwë; PM/340, 357; PMI; SI; SMI/Elwë, Olwë; UTI; WJ/369; WJI
|-wë||“ancient name suffix (usually but not always masculine)”||✧ PM/340|
ᴹT. Elu m.
References ✧ SM/85; SMI