S. [ǭ] became [au]; [ǭ] > [au]

S. [ǭ] became [au]; [ǭ] > [au]

The Primitive Elvish long vowel [ǭ], a slacker and lower long [ō], developed into [au] in Sindarin (PE18/96). A similar sound change occurred in Noldorin, though the exact details of the phonetic development are different. Tolkien described this sound change in several places, with somewhat different details each time:

In the earliest recorded Noldorin, [ē, ǣ, ā, ǭ, ō] remained distinct though changed to [ī, ei, ǭ, ou, ū]; later ei, ou products of ǣ, ǭ became ai, au coalescing with original ai, au (first version of Tengwesta Quenderinwa [TQ1], 1930s, PE18/46).
   é called (amba-wai) “raised-w”. This was frequently used above letters to denote a following w: thus = khw, = rw, etc. Its most regular use was to express the diphthongs au̯, and the archaic ou̯ from PQ ǭ which later became au̯: thus [au̯] (and archaic [ou̯]). These were seldom written ]., or h. (Feanorian Alphabet, 1930s, PE22/27).
In the earliest Noldorin ē, ę̄, ā, ǭ, ō appear as ī, ę̄, ǭ, ǭ, ū; later ę̄, ǭ coalesce with as ai, au (second version of Tengwesta Quenderinwa [TQ2], circa 1950 written shortly before the change of Noldorin to Sindarin, PE18/96).

The sound [ǭ] was fairly common in Old Sindarin and Old Sindarin, since primitive [ā] became [ǭ], and long [ā] was very common in Primitive Elvish. Most examples of this phonetic development are of this origin: [ā] > [ǭ] > [au]. However, this sound also arose as the a-fortification of o in Primitive Elvish. Some of the cleanest examples of the sound change come from this original primitive [ǭ], since there are fewer intermediate changes to examine. Here are some clear examples of this phonetic development:

The last example is somewhat obscure because Tolkien frequently represented [ǭ] as ō in The Etymologies; the long vowel [ō] could not itself appear in Old Noldorin, since earlier long [ō] became [ū]. It is possible, though, that in some conditions [ǭ] became [ō] instead: see the entry on how [au] became [o] in polysyllables. This later development of diphthongal [au] to short [o] frequently masked the earlier change of [ǭ] > [au], as shown in the final syllables of the first example Hadhod above.

In the Comparitive Tables for phonetic developments composed in the 1930s, Tolkien shows a more intricate development than the one given above. In particular, all of ā, ǭ and au merged into ǭ, which then becomes ou and then finally au (PE19/25): ā/ǭ/au > ǭ > ou > au. The same intermediate development ǭ > ou > au appears in the Noldorin notes from the 1930s on how ǭ evolved (PE18/46, PE22/27); see above for details. There are examples showing this fuller development in The Etymologies:

The second example does not show the intermediate form *Feanaur before the [au] became [o] in the final syllable, but is otherwise consistent with the same ǭ > ou > au development as the first example. There is no evidence that Sindarin shared this more complex development, but there is a note from Tolkien stating that the later diphthong [ou] became [au] (PE17/99). This sound change could not have applied to the primitive diphthong [ou], which became [ū] in Sindarin:

Q Orome gives S Araw, from Oromē. > Orom̆ > Orow̯ (so finally) > Araw. ow new > aw, but old ow- > ū (PE17/99).

Thus, it is conceivable the more complex series of sound changes ǭ > ou > au applied to Sindarin as well, and we simply have no examples of it. However, I personally consider this unlikely.

Conceptual Development: There are no clear indications of ǭ in Tolkien’s earliest conceptions of Primitive Elvish from the 1910s and 1920s. It was introduced into Primitive Elvish in the 1930s, and thereafter the Noldorin and Sindarin developments seems to be mostly the same, except for the intermediate Noldorin sound change to ou (which may or may not have applied in Sindarin).

Reference ✧ PE18/96

Order (02000)

Before 02200 short final vowels vanished Val. Arǭmēz > arāmē/arǭmæ > araum(a) > araum̌/arauv > S. Araw WJ/400
Before 04100 initial [x-] became [h-] Kh. Khazād > chaðǭd > chaðaud > S. Hadhod WJ/388
Before 04500 [au], [ae] became [o], [e] in polysyllables akjāwē-n > agauwen > S. agowen PE22/152
Before 05000 [mb], [nd] became [mm], [nn] findarātō > find-raud > findrod > S. finrod VT41/9
Before 05500 non-initial [m] usually became [v] Val. Arǭmēz > arāmē/arǭmæ > araum(a) > araum̌/arauv > S. Araw WJ/400
Before 05900 final [w], [v] vanished after [u] nābā > nauv > S. naw WJ/414
Before 06100 [h] vanished after vowels SAM > ahawv > S. aw PE17/173

Related

Phonetic Rule Elements

[ǭ] > [au] ✧ PE17/45 (ǭ > aw); PE17/108 (ǭ > au); PE18/96 (ǭ > au; coallesced with); PE19/91 (ǭ > au)

Phonetic Rule Examples

abakarǭ- > abakarau- ǭ > au aba-kar ā > S. avgaro ✧ WJ/371
ahǭme > ahaume ǭ > au SAM > ahawv > S. aw ✧ PE17/173
aɣǭle > aɣaule ǭ > au agālē > ãlē > S. aul ✧ PE17/131
aikanǭro > aikanauro ǭ > au Aika-nār- > S. Aegnor ✧ PM/347
akǭra > akaura ǭ > au akāra > S. agor ✧ WJ/415
akǭwen > akauwen ǭ > au akjāwē-n > agauwen > S. agowen ✧ PE22/152
aklǭra > aklaura ǭ > au aklā́ra > aklōra > aglaur > ᴸN. aglor ✧ PE18/87
amǭn > amaun ǭ > au Ámān > S. Avon ✧ PE17/162
anǭr > anaur ǭ > au (A)NAR > S. anor ✧ PE17/38
arǭme > araume ǭ > au Val. Arǭmēz > arāmē/arǭmæ > araum(a) > araum̌/arauv > S. Araw ✧ WJ/400
arǭta > arauta ǭ > au arātā > S. arod ✧ PM/363
astǭr > astaur ǭ > au as’tāră > S. astor ✧ PE17/183
ǭ > au ǭ > au ā > ō > S. o ✧ WJ/365
ǭ > au ǭ > au ā > S. -o ✧ WJ/372
bǭ > bau ǭ > au > S. baw ✧ PE17/143
bǭ > bau ǭ > au > S. baw ✧ PE17/145
bǭ > bau ǭ > au BA > S. baw ✧ WJ/371
bǭ > bau ǭ > au > S. baw ✧ WJ/372
bǭme > baume ǭ > au ñgwām > mbaum̃ > S. baw ✧ PE19/107
bǭta- > bauta- ǭ > au > S. bauda- ✧ PE17/143
bǭta- > bauta- ǭ > au bā-ta > S. boda- ✧ WJ/372
dǭra > daura ǭ > au dāra > S. Daur ✧ PE17/102
ekǭ- > ekau- ǭ > au HEK > hek(e) ā > S. ego! ✧ WJ/365
elǭ > elau ǭ > au el/ele/el-ā > S. elo! ✧ WJ/362
findarǭto > findarauto ǭ > au findarātō > find-raud > findrod > S. finrod ✧ VT41/9
grǭ > grau ǭ > au grā > S. graw ✧ VT47/12
gwǭ- > gwau- ǭ > au > gwǭ > S. go ✧ WJ/364
gwǭ > gwau ǭ > au > S. gwāw ✧ PE17/34
gwǭvandena > gwauvandena ǭ > au gwā-ƀandina > S. ’ovannen ✧ PE17/17
jǭna > jauna ǭ > au yānā > S. -ı̯aun ✧ PE17/42
jǭna > jauna ǭ > au yānā > S. iaun ✧ PE17/42
kǭlo > kaulo ǭ > au KOL > kālō > S. caul ✧ VT39/10
kǭna > kauna ǭ > au kānā > S. caun ✧ PM/362
-kǭno > -kauno ǭ > au -kānō > S. -gon ✧ PM/352
kawathǭne > kawathaune ǭ > au kjawathāni > S. cawathon ✧ PE22/152
kawǭ- > kawau- ǭ > au kyaw-ā > S. cawo ✧ PE22/152
kȳrǭna > kȳrauna ǭ > au keu̯rānā > cýrawn > S. cýron ✧ VT48/7
lastǭ- > lastau- ǭ > au LAS > S. lasto ✧ PE17/46
lǭmena > laumena ǭ > au lāmina > lǭ́m̃en > S. loven ✧ PE17/133
lindǭna > lindauna ǭ > au Lindānā > S. Lindon ✧ WJ/385
mǭ > mau ǭ > au MAƷ > S. †maw ✧ PE17/162
mǭ > mau ǭ > au > S. †maw ✧ VT47/6
mǭ > mau ǭ > au mag > S. maw ✧ VT47/18
mǭlime > maulime ǭ > au mā-limi > S. molif ✧ VT47/6
narǭka > narauka ǭ > au Kh. Narâg > S. Narog ✧ PE17/37
nǭpata > naupata ǭ > au nāpata > S. nobad ✧ VT48/5
nǭr > naur ǭ > au (A)NAR > S. naur ✧ PE17/38
nǭva > nauva ǭ > au nābā > nauv > S. naw ✧ WJ/414
orǭme > oraume ǭ > au Orǭmē > Oraúmh > Araúv > S. Áraw ✧ PE17/153
pǭr > paur ǭ > au kwāra > S. paur ✧ PM/318
pǭre > paure ǭ > au kwārē > S. paur ✧ PE17/42
rǭta > rauta ǭ > au (a)rātā > S. raud ✧ PE17/49
rǭta > rauta ǭ > au áratā > (a)rā́tā > S. raud ✧ PE17/118
rǭta > rauta ǭ > au rāta > S. raud ✧ PE17/186
r̥ǭva > r̥auva ǭ > au S-RAB > S. rhaw(f) ✧ PE17/78
r̥ǭvan > r̥auvan ǭ > au srāban > S. rhovan ✧ PE17/78
r̥ǭwe > r̥auwe ǭ > au srāwe > S. rhaw ✧ MR/350
siriǭna > siriauna ǭ > au siriānā > S. Sirion ✧ PE17/42
tahǭre > tahaure ǭ > au tăsăre > tachaur > S. †taur/taor ✧ PE17/81
tǭ > tau ǭ > au tad > tað > > S. taw ✧ PE19/104
turukǭno > turukauno ǭ > au Turukāno > S. Tur(u)gon ✧ PE17/113
θǭne > θaune ǭ > au thānĭ- > S. thaun ✧ PE17/81
θǭniel > θauniel ǭ > au THAN > S. thoniel ✧ PE17/82
xaðǭd > xaðaud ǭ > au Kh. Khazād > chaðǭd > chaðaud > S. Hadhod ✧ WJ/388
xǭno > xauno ǭ > au KHAN > S. †hawn ✧ VT47/14

N. [ǭ] became [ou]; [ǭ] > [ou]

GS/§4.109 @@@ Orǭmē > Oroume > ON. Araume implies sound change occurred before final vowel loss, but plurals like naug (< nǭka < nauka) vs. nuig (< nǭik < nǭki) imply it occurred after final vowel loss)

Reference ✧ PE22/27

Order (00300)

Before 01900 [ou] became [au] ᴹ✶Orǭmē > Oroume > ON. Araume Ety/ORÓM

Phonetic Rule Elements

[ǭ] > [ou] ✧ PE19/25 (ǭ > ǫu); PE19/25 (ǭ > ǫu); PE19/25 (ǭ > ǫu)

Phonetic Rule Examples

abǭro > abouro ǭ > ou ON. abōro > N. Afor ✧ Ety/AB
anǭr > anour ǭ > ou ᴹ✶anār- > N. Anor ✧ Ety/ANÁR
anǭr > anour ǭ > ou ᴹ✶Anār > Anaur > N. Anor ✧ SD/306
atlǭta > atlouta ǭ > ou ᴹ√TALÁT > atlaud > N. aclod ✧ Ety/TALÁT
bǭda > bouda ǭ > ou ᴹ✶bād- > N. bauð ✧ Ety/BAD
bǭka > bouka ǭ > ou ᴹ√MBAW > N. baug ✧ Ety/MBAW
bǭla > boula ǭ > ou ᴹ√ÑGWAL > N. baul ✧ Ety/ÑGWAL
brekǭla > brekoula ǭ > ou ᴹ✶berékā > N. bregol ✧ Ety/BERÉK
brekǭla > brekoula ǭ > ou ᴹ√MERÉK > N. bregol ✧ Ety/MERÉK
daniθǭro > daniθouro ǭ > ou ᴹ✶ndani-thārō > N. Dainthor ✧ LR/188
dǭda > douda ǭ > ou ᴹ✶dagdā > N. dauð ✧ EtyAC/DAG
dǭko > douko ǭ > ou ON. ndōko > N. daug ✧ Ety/NDAK
dǭra > doura ǭ > ou ᴹ✶daʒrā > N. daur ✧ EtyAC/DAƷ
drǭka > drouka ǭ > ou ᴹ✶d’rāk > N. draug ✧ Ety/DARÁK
glǭ > glou ǭ > ou ᴹ✶g’lā́ > N. glaw ✧ Ety/KAL
glǭre > gloure ǭ > ou ᴹ√GLAW(-R) > N. glaur ✧ Ety/GLAW(-R)
glǭre > gloure ǭ > ou ᴹ√GLÁWAR > N. glaur ✧ Ety/LÁWAR
goθombǭko > goθombouko ǭ > ou ᴹ✶Gothombauk- > N. Gothmog ✧ Ety/MBAW
goθorǭko > goθorouko ǭ > ou ᴹ✶Gothorauk- > N. Gothrog ✧ EtyAC/MBAW
gǭha > gouha ǭ > ou ᴹ✶gāsa > N. gaw ✧ Ety/GAS
gǭle > goule ǭ > ou ᴹ√GAWA > N. Gaul ✧ Ety/GAWA
gǭle > goule ǭ > ou ᴹ√ÑGAW > N. gaul ✧ Ety/ÑGAW
gǭro > gouro ǭ > ou ᴹ√ÑGAW > N. gaur ✧ Ety/ÑGAW
gǭta > gouta ǭ > ou ᴹ√GAWA > N. gaud ✧ Ety/GAWA
jǭ > jou ǭ > ou ᴹ√YA > N. io ✧ Ety/YA
jǭbe > joube ǭ > ou ᴹ√YAB > N. iau ✧ Ety/YAB
jǭbi > joubi ǭ > ou ᴹ√YAB > N. iui ✧ EtyAC/YAB
jǭna > jouna ǭ > ou ᴹ√YAN > N. iaun ✧ Ety/YAN
jǭra > joura ǭ > ou ᴹ√YA > N. iaur ✧ Ety/YA
katwǭra > katwoura ǭ > ou ᴹ✶katwārā > N. cadwor ✧ Ety/KAT
kemenǭro > kemenouro ǭ > ou ᴹ√KEM > N. cevnor ✧ EtyAC/KEM
klǭra > kloura ǭ > ou ᴹ√KAL > N. †claur ✧ Ety/KAL
kǭha > kouha ǭ > ou ᴹ√KAS > N. caw ✧ Ety/KAS
kǭne > koune ǭ > ou ᴹ√KAN > N. caun ✧ Ety/KAN
kǭr > kour ǭ > ou ᴹ✶kǭro > N. Caur ✧ EtyAC/KOR
lǭka > louka ǭ > ou ᴹ✶lauka > N. lhaug ✧ Ety/LAW
mǭga > mouga ǭ > ou ᴹ✶māgā > N. maw ✧ Ety/SMAG
m̥ǭga > m̥ouga ǭ > ou ᴹ√SMAG > N. hmaw ✧ Ety/SMAG
mǭga > mouga ǭ > ou ᴹ✶māga > N. maw ✧ EtyAC/MAG²
mǭre > moure ǭ > ou ᴹ✶mǭri > N. maur ✧ Ety/MOR
narǭka > narouka ǭ > ou ᴹ✶narāka > N. Narog ✧ Ety/NÁRAK
nǭki > nouki ǭ > ou ᴹ√NAU̯K > N. nuig ✧ EtyAC/NAUK
nǭkla > noukla ǭ > ou ᴹ√NAU̯K > N. naugol ✧ Ety/NAUK
nǭko > nouko ǭ > ou ᴹ√NAU̯K > N. naug ✧ Ety/NAUK
nǭr > nour ǭ > ou ᴹ√NAR¹ > N. naur ✧ Ety/NAR¹
nǭta > nouta ǭ > ou ᴹ√NUT > N. naud ✧ Ety/NUT
orǭme > oroume ǭ > ou ᴹ✶Orǭmē > Oroume > ON. Araume ✧ Ety/ORÓM
orǭme > oroume ǭ > ou ᴹ✶Orǭmē > ON. Araume ✧ PE22/37
ǭra > oura ǭ > ou ᴹ√AR¹ > N. aur ✧ Ety/AR¹
pǭme > poume ǭ > ou ᴹ√KWAM > N. paw ✧ Ety/KWAM
pǭre > poure ǭ > ou ON. pōre > N. paur ✧ Ety/KWAR
rǭ > rou ǭ > ou ON. > N. rhaw ✧ Ety/RAW
rǭba > rouba ǭ > ou ᴹ√RAB² > N. rhaw ✧ Ety/RAMBĀ
rǭba > rouba ǭ > ou ᴹ✶rāba > N. rhaw ✧ Ety/RAB
rǭbana > roubana ǭ > ou ᴹ√RAB > N. rhofan ✧ EtyAC/RAB
rǭda > rouda ǭ > ou ᴹ✶rǭda > ON. rauda ✧ Ety/ROD
rǭko > rouko ǭ > ou ᴹ√RUK > N. rhaug ✧ Ety/RUK
rǭmale > roumale ǭ > ou ᴹ✶rāmalē > N. rhofal ✧ Ety/RAM
rǭmali > roumali ǭ > ou ᴹ✶rāmalē > N. rhofel ✧ Ety/RAM
rǭne > roune ǭ > ou ᴹ√RAN > N. rhaun ✧ Ety/RAN
rǭta > routa ǭ > ou ON. rauta > N. rhaud ✧ Ety/RAUTĀ
rǭwi > rouwi ǭ > ou ON. rōwi > N. rhui ✧ Ety/RAW
sǭba > souba ǭ > ou ON. sōba > N. saw ✧ Ety/SAB
sǭbi > soubi ǭ > ou ON. sōba > N. sui ✧ Ety/SAB
sɸǭna > sɸouna ǭ > ou ᴹ✶spāna > N. faun ✧ Ety/SPAN
sɸǭra > sɸoura ǭ > ou ᴹ√SPAR² > N. faur ✧ EtyAC/SPAR²
tlǭta > tlouta ǭ > ou ᴹ√TALÁT > tlaud > N. claud ✧ EtyAC/TALÁT
tǭra > toura ǭ > ou ᴹ✶tau̯rā > N. taur ✧ Ety/TĀ
tǭre > toure ǭ > ou ᴹ✶tau̯rē > N. taur ✧ Ety/TÁWAR
tǭro > touro ǭ > ou ᴹ✶tārō > N. †taur ✧ Ety/TĀ
θǭha > θouha ǭ > ou ᴹ✶thausā > N. thaw ✧ Ety/THUS
θǭn > θoun ǭ > ou Ilk. thōn > N. thaun ✧ Ety/THŌN
θǭni > θouni ǭ > ou Ilk. thōn > N. thuin ✧ Ety/THŌN
θǭrena > θourena ǭ > ou ᴹ✶tháurēnā > N. thoren ✧ Ety/THUR
wǭn > woun ǭ > ou ᴹ✶WĀ-N > N. gwaun ✧ Ety/WA-N
wǭni > wouni ǭ > ou ᴹ✶WĀ-N > N. guin ✧ Ety/WA-N
wǭra > woura ǭ > ou ON. wóra > N. gwaur ✧ Ety/WAƷ
xǭda > xouda ǭ > ou ᴹ✶khagda > N. hauð ✧ Ety/KHAG
xǭsta > xousta ǭ > ou ᴹ✶khau̯-stā > N. haust ✧ Ety/KHAW
ɸaianǭr > ɸaianour ǭ > ou ON. Phayanṓr > Feanoúr > N. Féanor ✧ Ety/PHAY
ɸindekǭno > ɸindekouno ǭ > ou ᴹ✶Findekāno > N. Fingon ✧ Ety/PHIN
ɸinderǭto > ɸinderouto ǭ > ou ᴹ✶Phinde-rauto > N. Finrod ✧ Ety/PHIN
ɸǭka > ɸouka ǭ > ou ᴹ√PHAU̯ > ON. phauka ✧ Ety/PHAU