Q. Eä n. “Creation, the (Material) Universe, Cosmos, World; it is, let it be” (Category: Universe)
A term for all Creation, it is simply the present tense or imperative of the verb Q. ëa- “to exist”, literally meaning “it is” or “let it be” (Let/286; MR/39; NM/231). In various notes from the late 1960s Tolkien clarified its meaning:
Thus it seems Eä is limited in scope to the material universe, as opposed to other terms like ilu and ilúvë which also include the spiritual realm. Tolkien occasionally translated Eä as “World”, but probably only in a poetic sense. The term Ambar is more proper when referring only to the world itself rather than the entire Cosmos.
Conceptual Development: The term ᴹQ. Ea “all that is, the World” was first introduced in the Quenya Verbal System of the 1940s along with the verb ᴹQ. ea-, but in that document the verb ea- was the general verb for “to be” rather than being limited in sense only to existential statements (PE22/122).
References ✧ Let/284, 286; LRI; LT1I; MR/7, 39, 330; MRI; NM/231; PE17/22, 74; PE22/138, 147; PMI; SDI2/Eä; SI; SMI; UTI; VT43/13-14; VT49/28; WJ/402; WJI
|ëa-||“to be, exist”||imperative|
|√EŊE > ëa||[eŋa] > [eɣa] > [ea]||✧ PE22/147|