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Quenya Phonetics

My analysis of Quenya phonology is based mainly Tolkien’s “Outline of Phonology” from the 1950s (PE19/68-107). I made one pass through the material back in 2012, but I have since completely changed the way I record phonetic analysis and have not had time to go back and update this material. This phonetic analysis should be ignored until I have time to revisit the material, but this won’t happen for a while, since I intend to work out the phonology of both Early Quenya and Middle Quenya first.

Phonemes

  p-series t-series ty-series k-series kw-series
voiceless-stops [p] [t] [tʲ] ‹ty› [k] ‹c› [kʷ] ‹qu›
voiced-stops [b] [d] [dʲ] ‹dy› [g] [gʷ] ‹gw›
voiceless-spirants [f] [s] [θ] ‹þ› [j̊] ‹hy› [h] [x] ‹χ› [w̥] ‹hw›
voiced-spirants [v]
nasals [m] [n] [nʲ] ‹ny› [ŋ] ‹ñ› [ŋʷ] ‹nw›
continuants [w] [l] [r] [j] ‹y› [w]
voiceless-continuants [l̥] ‹hl› [r̥] ‹hr› [j̊] ‹hy› [w̥] ‹hw›

vowels [i] [e] [a] [o] [u]
long-vowels [ī] [ē] [ā] [ō] [ū]
diphthongs [ai] [oi] [ui] [au] [eu] [iu]
others [ø]

Phonetic Groups

Phonetic Rules

[d] between [n], [r], [l] and [j] vanished [{nrl}dj] > [{nrl}øj]
[ɣ] between [i], [e] and a vowel became [j] [{ie}ɣV] > [{ie}jV]
[ɣ] from [g] disappeared [ɣ] > [ø]
[ɣ] vocalized before [r], [l], [w], [j] [Vɣ{rl}|ɣj|ɣw] > [V̄ø{rl}|ij|uw]
initial [ɣ] became [h] [ɣ-] > [h-]
initial [ŋ] became [n] [ŋ-] > [n-]
initial [sr], [sl] became voiceless [l], [r] [sr-|sl-] > [r̥-|l̥-]
initial voiceless nasals [hm], [hn] became voiced [m], [n] [m̥-|n̥-] > [m-|n-]
initial [wo] became [o] [wo-] > [o-]
long vowels before clusters were shortened [V̄CC|V̄tj|V̄kw] > [V̆CC|V̄tj|V̄kw]
medial [ð], [z] dissimilated to [l], [s] after [r] [rVðX|rVzX] > [rVlX|rVsX]
medial [ŋ] after a [n], [ŋ], [l], [r] became [g] [-{nŋlr}ŋ-] > [-{nŋlr}g-]
[ŋ] assimilated to following [n] after [e], [a], [o] [{eao}ŋn] > [{eao}nn]
[ŋ] before [m], [n] vanished while lengthening preceding vowel [Vŋ{mn}] > [V̄ø{mn}]
[n] vanished between vowels and [r] with compensatory lengthening [Vnr] > [V̄ør]
[p], [k] before [t] spirantalized to [β], [x] [{pk}t] > [{βx}t]
[rɣe], [lɣe] became [rjĕ], [ljĕ] [{rl}ɣe] > [{rl}jĕ]
[rɣ], [lɣ] became [rr], [ll] [rɣ|lɣ] > [rr|ll]
[rl] became [ll] [rl] > [ll]
[r], [l] following many consonants developed a preceding vowel [V₁{ptkɸθxnrz}øl|{ptkɸθx}ølV₁|V₁{nr}øl|møl|{ptkɸθxmnz}ør] > [V₁{ptkɸθxnrz}V₁l|{ptkɸθx}V₁lV₁|V₁{nr}V₁l|mul|{ptkɸθxmnz}ar]
[rs] became [ss] [rs] > [ss]
second short vowel of same quality lost [] > []
[sf] became [f] [sf] > [f]
[sj], [xj] became [j̊] [{xs}j] > [j̊]
[sp], [sk] metathesized to [ps], [sk] [sp|sk|skw] > [ps|ks|skw]
stressed non-final [ei] became [ē] [éi] > [ē]
syllabic [s] developed a preceding [i] [ṣ-] > [is-]
[θ] became [s] [θ] > [s]
[v] after [s,z,n,r,l,ao,ai] became [w] [{sznrl}v|{ao}iv] > [{sznrl}w|{ao}iw]
[w̥] after [p] became [p] [p{ww̥}] > [pp]
[w] from [gw] initially and between vowels became [v] [w-|VwV] > [v-|VvV]
[w̥], [j̊] after voiceless stops merged with [w], [j] [{ptk}{w̥j̊}] > [{ptk}{wj}]
[x] became [h] except before [t] [x|xt] > [h|xt]
[z] assimilated to following [m], [n] [zm|zn] > [mm|nn]
[z] became [r] [z] > [r]
[ɸu] became [hu] [ɸu] > [hu]
[ɸ], [β] became [f], [v] [ɸ|β] > [f|v]
[ɾ] became [r] [ɾ] > [r]

Other

conceptual-changes-in-phonetic-developments
dissimilation
final-vowels
initial-clusters
initial-consonants
long-consonants
long-vowels
medial-clusters
medial-consonants
metathesis
phonetics
reformation