√KAB root. “hold, contain, retain, possess, have in hand”
This root’s most notable derivative was one of the Sindarin words for “hand”, S. cam, supplanting archaic S. †maw which survived only in compounds (VT47/6-7). This root first appeared in The Etymologies of the 1930s glossed “hollow” (Ety/KAB), replacing an earlier entry glossed “hold, (?contain)”. The root reappeared in the late 1960s in Tolkien’s notes on Eldarin Hands, Fingers and Numerals, variously glossed “hold, contain, retain” (VT47/7) or “to hold, possess, have in hand” (VT47/20).
A later addition to these notes then made the rather surprising claim that “kamba is from KAM not KAB”. This seems to be supported by a Quenya verb form camnelyes “you received it” (VT47/21), where the past form camne must be from √KAM. However, the form cambelyes was written below this, possibly indicating a restoration of √KAB, as suggested by Patrick Wynne.
Neo-Eldarin: For purposes of Neo-Eldarin I think it best to continue to assume the existence of √KAB.
References ✧ VT47/7, 20
ᴹ√KAB¹ root. “hollow”
References ✧ Ety/KAB, KHYAR, KWAT, LUS, MAƷ, PHOR; EtyAC/KAB, MAƷ