Q. Litany of Loreto

Q. Litany of Loreto

Tolkien’s translation of the Litany of Loreto prayer into Quenya, composed sometime in the 1950s (VT43/7), first published in the “Words of Joy (Part Two)” article in Vinyar Tengwar #44 (VT44/12). Tolkien did not provide an English translation of the prayer; following the editors of the “Words of Joy” article, I used a modern English translation of the prayer.

In the original prayer, the response “pray for us” (Q. arca atarmë) would have followed each line addressing Mary, but Tolkien only included this phrase in the first line where it appeared (a Aina Maria arca atarmë). Similarly, he abbreviated “have mercy on us” (Q. órava (o)messë) as o.o in the last line where it appeared.

Further discussion can be found in the analysis of the individual phrases. My analysis largely follows that of the “Litany of Loreto” section (VT44/11-19) of the “Words of Joy” article. As noted by the Wynne, Smith and Hostetter, Tolkien omitted lines 3 to 5 of the original prayer. For consistency with the analysis in the Vinyar Tengwar article, the phrases presented below uses the lineation from the original prayer rather than from Tolkien’s translation.


Heru órava omessë “Lord, have mercy on us”
a Hrísto órava ómessë “Christ, have mercy on us”
Atar meneldëa Eru órava (o)messë “God the Father of Heaven, have mercy on us”
a Eruion Mardorunando, Eru órava (o)messë “God, the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us”
a Aina Fairë, Eru órava (o)messë “God, the Holy Spirit, have mercy on us”
a Aina Neldië Eru Er órava (o)messë “Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us”
a Aina Maria arca atarmë “Holy Mary, pray for us”
Aina Eruontarië “Holy Mother of God”
Aina Wendë mi Wenderon “Holy Virgin of virgins”
Amillë Hristo “Mother of Christ”
Amillë Eruva lissëo “Mother of divine grace”