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Q. ataformaitë adj. “ambidextrous” (Category: Hand (other))

Q. ataformaitë, adj. “ambidextrous” (Category: Hand (other))

A word for “ambidextrous” in the so-called Ambidexters Sentence written in 1968, replacing various alternate forms like at(t)aformor and attaformaitë (VT49/6-8). As pointed out by Patrick Wynne, this word is a combination of at(a)- “double” and formaitë “right handed”, analogous to the Latin formation “ambidextrous” (VT49/9), and indeed ᴹQ. formaite was glossed both “righthanded” and “dexterous” in The Etymologies of the 1930s (Ety/PHOR). However, the point of the Ambidexters Sentence is that the Elves themselves where naturally ambidextrous and equally skilled with both hands, so the notion that “righthanded” is connected to “dextrous” makes no sense for the Elves. Thus, the term was likely coined after the Elves encountered Men, for whom right-handedness was common.

References ✧ VT49/9, 11





ataformaiti plural “ambidextrous, ambidexters” ✧ VT49/9


at(a)- “double, second time” ✧ VT49/11 (#ata-)
#formaitë “righthanded, dexterous” ✧ VT49/11 (#formaitë)

Element In