ᴹ√LU root. “*time”
This root and ones like it were the basis for time words throughout Tolkien’s life. The earliest appearance of this root was as ᴱ√LUHU or ᴱ√LU’U (the latter marked by Tolkien with a “?”) in the Qenya Lexicon of the 1910s, unglossed but with derivatives like ᴱQ. lú “24 hours, day” and ᴱQ. lúme “time” (QL/56). It also had derivatives in the contemporaneous Gnomish Lexicon like G. lu “occasion, time” and G. lust “time; tide; weather” (GL/55). It appeared as unglossed ᴹ√LU in The Etymologies of the 1930s with derivatives like ᴹQ. lú “a time, occasion”, ᴹQ. lúme “time”, and their Noldorin cognate N. lhû (Ety/LU).
The Etymologies had a distinct root ᴹ√ULU “pour, flow” (Ety/ULU). It was not explicity connected to ᴹ√LU in this 1930s document, but in notes from around 1959 Tolkien said lūmē “time” was derived from √ULU “flow” (PE17/168), so it is likely that √LU is an inversion of this more basic root.
References ✧ Ety/KWET, LU, NAR², YA
ᴱ√LUHU root. “*time”
References ✧ QL/56