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LOK root. “bend, loop”

LOK root. “bend, loop, [ᴱ√] twine, twist, curl; [ᴹ√] great serpent, dragon”

A root having to do with bending things, whose most notable derivatives are Q. (h)lócë/S. lhûg “snake, serpent, reptile, worm”. The first appearance of this root was as ᴱ√LOKO “twine, twist, curl” in the Qenya Lexicon of the 1910s (QL/55), and in this period it had derivatives like ᴱQ. lóke “snake” and G. ulug “dragon”, but also derivatives like G. log- “curl, bend, wind, twine” and G. lonc “curl” (QL/55; GL/54).

In The Etymologies of the 1930s, however, ᴹ√LOK was glossed “great serpent, dragon”, and all its derivatives were dragon words based on ᴹQ. lóke and N. lhûg (Ety/LOK). In this period the “curl” words might have been allocated to the unglossed root ᴹ√LOKH which had derivatives like N. lhoch “ringlet” as well as ᴹQ. lokse and N. lhaws “hair”, so perhaps meaning “*curl (of hair)” (Ety/LOKH). In notes from the late 1950s, Tolkien again generalized the meaning of the root √LOK to “bend, loop”, with additional non-serpent derivatives like Q. lokin “bent” and Q. lōke “bight, bend, curl of hair” (PE17/160); thus √LOK may have (re)absorbed the meanings of ᴹ√LOKH.

References ✧ PE17/145, 160; SA/lok

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ᴹ√LOK root. “great serpent, dragon”

See √LOK for discussion.

References ✧ Ety/ANGWA, LOK; EtyAC/LAK¹

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ᴱ√LOKO root. “twine, twist, curl”

See √LOK for discussion.

References ✧ LT2A/Foalókë; QL/55

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