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S. a Hîr Annûn Gilthoniel, “*oh Lady of the West, Star-kindler”
The fourth phrase of Lúthien’s Song (LB/354). Three translations of this phrase are:
- Patrick Wynne: “*O Lord of the West, star-kindling” (NTTLS/11)
- David Salo: “*O Lady of the West, star-kindler” (GS/211)
- Bertrand Bellet and Benjamin Babut: “*O Lady of the West, Starkindler” (GTLC)
The first word is the vocative particle a² “O”. The second word hîr is typically translated as masculine “lord”, but since in this case it is addressing Elbereth, I think (like Salo, Bellet and Babut) it is better to translate it as “lady”, even though elsewhere the Sindarin word for “lady” is given as híril or heryn. The third word is annûn “west” and the last word is Gilthoniel “Star-kindler”, one of the names of Elbereth (Varda).
Patrick Wynne instead suggested (NTTLS/10) that the fact that the word gilthoniel is lower case might mean it is an adjectival form “star-kindling” applied to the Moon rather than Varda, and he is addressed as “Lord” (the Elves considered the Moon to be male). This does explain the masculine form Hîr, but I find it difficult to believe that Lúthien would address the Moon by one of Varda’s name, and follow Salo, Bellet and Babut in assuming the words are spoken to Elbereth.
Reference ✧ LB/354 ✧ A Hîr Annûn gilthoniel
|hîr||“lord, master”||✧ LB/354.3102|
|annûn||“sunset, west; (lit.) going down”||✧ LB/354.3103|