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Q. mátengwië n. “language of the hands”

Q. mátengwië, n. “language of the hands”

The Quenya term for sign language, literally “language of the hands” (VT47/9). It is a compound of “hand” and tengwië “language (*signing)”.

Conceptual Development: Tolkien first wrote, then rejected, the word Málambe for this term (VT47/23). As pointed out by the editors of the article (@@@ give names), the term lambë was associated with vocal languages, and therefore inappropriate for signing with hands.

References ✧ VT47/9, 23

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Elements

“hand”
#tengwië “reading; language (*signing)” ✧ VT47/23