Q. Silmaril (Silmarill-) pn. “Great Jewel”
The name of the great jewels crafted by Fëanor from which The Silmarillion legends gets their name (S/33). It sometimes appeared in the longer form Silmarillë (PE17/47, PM/363). Tolkien translated this name as “radiance of pure light” (Let/148) and said that it was a combination of silima, the crystaline substance from which the jewels were made (RGEO/65), and a derivative of the root √RIL “brilliant, brilliance” (PM/363), perhaps in the form [ᴹQ.] rille “brilliance”.
Conceptual Development: The name ᴱQ. Silmaril dates back to the earliest Lost Tales (LT1/128). Christopher Tolkien suggested that at this early stage it was a compound of ᴱQ. Sil “Moon” and ᴱQ. marilla “pearl” (LT1A/Silmaril), which is consistent with its Gnomish cognate G. Silubrilt. In The Etymologies, the name ᴹQ. Silmaril appears as a combination of silma “silver, shining white” and the root ᴹ√RIL (Ety/RIL, SIL), similar to its later etymology.
References ✧ Let/148, 425; LotR/1033-1034; LotRI; MRI; PE17/19, 47, 112; PM/30, 363; PMI; RGEO/65; S/33; SA/ril, sil
|Silmarillion||genitive plural||“of the Silmarils”||✧ S/33|
|Silmarilli||plural||“radiance of pure light”||✧ Let/148|
|Silmarilli||plural||✧ Let/425; LotR/1033; MRI/Silmaril; PM/30; PMI/Silmaril; SA/sil|
|silima||“crystal substance devised by Fëanor”||✧ RGEO/65; SA/sil|
|√RIL||“brilliant (light), brilliance”||✧ PE17/47; PE17/112 (RIL); PM/363; SA/ril|
|√SIL||“shine (white or silver)”||✧ Let/425|
ᴹQ. Silmaril (Silmarill-) pn.
References ✧ Ety/MIR, RIL, SIL; LRI; TII; WRI
|Silmarilli||plural||✧ Ety/MIR; Ety/RIL|
|silma||“silver, shining white”||✧ Ety/SIL|
|ᴹ✶silima-rille > Silmarille||[silimarille] > [silimarill] > [silmarill] > [silmaril]||✧ Ety/RIL|
ᴱQ. Silmaril pn. “*Moon-pearl”
References ✧ GL/67; LT1/128; LT1A/Silmarilli; LT1I/Silmarilli
|Silmarilli||plural||✧ LT1/128; LT1A/Silmarilli; LT1I/Silmarilli|
|Sil||“Moon; Rose”||✧ LT1A/Sil|