S. Argonath loc. “Pillars of the Kings, (lit.) Royal Stones”

S. Argonath, loc. “Pillars of the Kings, (lit.) Royal Stones”

Two statues of Gondorian kings just north of Nen Hithoel, translated “Pillars of the Kings” (LotR/392), more literally “(Pair of) Royal Stones” (RC/347, RGEO/67, Let/427). It is combination of the prefix ar(a)- “noble”, the noun gond “stone”, and the class-plural suffix -ath (RC/347).

It is not clear why this noun uses the class-plural. However, in one place Tolkien describes a dual variant argonad using the archaic dual suffix †-d (Let/427). Perhaps this was the original form of the name, altered to Argonath after the Sindarin dual form was forgotten.

Conceptual Development: In Lord of the Rings drafts from the 1940s, this name first appeared as N. Sern Aran(ath) “King Stones” along with an alternate name N. Sern Ubed “[Stones of] Denial” (WR/98, 132). Later in these drafts it was revised to N. Argonath (TI/366).

References ✧ Let/427; LotR/392; LotRI; PMI; RC/347; RGEO/67; SA/ar(a), gond; SI

Glosses

Variations

Inflections

#argonad dual ✧ Let/427

Elements

ar(a)- “noble, royal, high” ✧ RC/347
gond “stone, rock” ✧ RC/347 (gon-); SA/gond
-ath “collective or group plural” ✧ RC/347
arn(a)- “noble, royal” ✧ Let/427
RĀ/ARA “noble, high, royal” ✧ SA/ar(a) (ar(a)-)

N. Argonath loc. “King Stones”

See S. Argonath for discussion.

References ✧ TI/366; TII; WRI


N. Sern Aranath loc. “King Stones”

Earlier name for the Argonath appearing in Lord of the Rings drafts from the 1940s (TI/366), a combination of the plural of sarn “stone” and the class-plural of aran “king”. It also appeared with the ordinary plural Sern Erain, and the singular form Sarn Aran (WR/98).

References ✧ TI/366; TII/Argonath; WR/98, 132; WRI/Sarn Aran, Sern Aranath

Glosses

Variations

Related

Changes

Elements

sarn “stone as a material” plural ✧ WR/98 (Sern)
aran “king, lord (of a specific region)” class-plural ✧ WR/98 (Erain)

N. Sern Ubed loc. “[Stones of] Denial”

Earlier name for the Argonath appearing in Lord of the Rings drafts from the 1940s (WR/132), a combination of the plural of sarn “stone” and ubed “denial”.

References ✧ WR/132; WRI/Sern Ubed

Glosses

Variations

Related

Elements

sarn “stone as a material” plural ✧ WR/132 (Sairn); WR/132 (Sern)
ubed “denial”