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ᴹ√A root. “intensive prefix”

⚠️ᴹ√A root. “intensive prefix”
Q. an- “intensive prefix”
S. #an- “intensive prefix”

An “intensive” root addition described by Tolkien in The Etymologies from the 1930s (EtyAC/A). It was one of two basic intensive mechanisms, along with the (syllabic) prefixed N- (EtyAC/N). The prefixed vowel a- seems to have been used originally in Primitive Elvish when the base vowel was a, and similarly with E and I (EtyAC/E; Ety/I²); whether this was also true of the vowels o, u is unclear, as Tolkien didn’t mention them. These various vocalic intensifications were frequently accompanied by dynamic lengthening (doubling), with the example given by Tolkien being: ᴹ✶parkā “dry” → ᴹ✶apparkā “very dry, arid” (> N. afarch).

In the case of e- and i-, the examples were dero, dise → ᴹ✶Endero, ᴹ✶Indise “groom, bride”; these examples indicate that other kinds of consonant fortifications where possible, in this case nasalization of stops, which often replaced consonant-doubling for voiced stops in Primitive Elvish.

Specifically in the case of a-, however, it seems it could be used as a general intensive that “was distinct in origin, though similar in function, to the prefixed basic vowel”. Why this was true of a- alone is not clear, but there seems to have been some complex interplay between the vocalic intensives and the intensives derived from syllabic initial ṇ-, with the net result that the intensive prefix in Q. became an-, am-, añ-, depending on the initial consonant.

See the entry on the Quenya comparative for a more detailed discussion of the conceptual development of intensives in Eldarin.

References ✧ EtyAC/A, GOS, N, TALÁT

Glosses

Related

Derivatives


ᴱ√AKA root. “*intensive, excessive”

A root in the Gnomish Lexicon of the 1910s whose derivatives have to with “extreme” and “excessive“ (GL/17). It’s probably related to the intensive prefix ᴱQ. aka- from the 1920s Early Qenya Grammar (PE14/81). Given the differences in later intensive prefixes and its clash with other roots like 1930s ᴹ√AK “narrow” and (Sindarin only) √AK “hostile return”, it is unlikely this root remained valid in Tolkien’s later conception of the languages.

References ✧ GL/17

Variations

Derivatives


ᴹ√E root. “intensive prefix”

See ᴹ√A for discussion.

Reference ✧ EtyAC/E ✧ “intensive prefix”

Derivatives


ᴹ√ root. “intensive prefix”

See ᴹ√A for discussion.

References ✧ Ety/I²; EtyAC/I²

Glosses

Derivatives