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Q. nam- v. (basic-verb) “to judge” (Category: to Judge)

Q. nam-, v. (basic-verb) “to judge, *think (have as an opinion)” (Category: to Judge)
Q. nav-¹ “to judge, think [have as an opinion]”
Q. #ham- “to judge”
Q. nem-¹ “to judge”

The verb nam- “judge” appeared in 1968 notes associated with the The Shibboleth of Fëanor, attested in the phrase namin alasaila “I judge [it] unwise” (VT41/13). This version of the verb is consistent with the name Námo, given in The Silmarillion as the true name of Mandos (S/28).

In a marginal note within Late Notes on Verb Structure (LVS) from 1969 Tolkien revised the root to √NDAB “to judge” with a new form Návo to replace Námo (PE22/154 note #53). These notes initially had nem- for “judge”, revised to ham- and finally to nav- (PE22/154 note #53, 55, 56); it was after all these revisions that he coined the new root √NDAB.

The verb nav- “judge” appeared in several phrases:

Based on the above phrases, it seems the basic sense of the verb is “judge” or “think = *have as an opinion”.

Conceptual Development: Tolkien introduced the name Námo in the 1950s, which is probably where this concept originated. It seems to have remained √NAM up through 1968, and then nam- >> nem- >> ham- >> nav- in 1969.

Neo-Quenya: For purposes of Neo-Quenya, I prefer to use the form nam- “judge, *think [have as an opinion]” for consistency with the name Námo in The Silmarillion as published.

References ✧ VT41/13



namin aorist 1st-sg “I judge [it]” ✧ VT41/13

Element In