Q. Silmaril (Silmarill-) pn. “Great Jewel”

Q. Silmaril (Silmarill-), pn. “Great Jewel”

The name of the great jewels crafted by Fëanor from which The Silmarillion legends gets their name (S/33). It sometimes appeared in the longer form Silmarillë (PE17/47, PM/363). Tolkien translated this name as “radiance of pure light” (Let/148) and said that it was a combination of silima, the crystaline substance from which the jewels were made (RGEO/65), and a derivative of the root √RIL “brilliant, brilliance” (PM/363), perhaps in the form (ᴹQ.) rille “brilliance”.

Conceptual Development: The name ᴱQ. Silmaril dates back to the earliest Lost Tales (LT1/128). Christopher Tolkien suggested that at this early stage it was a compound of ᴱQ. Sil “Moon” and ᴱQ. marilla “pearl” (LT1A/Silmaril), which is consistent with its Gnomish cognate G. Silubrilt. In The Etymologies, the name ᴹQ. Silmaril appears as a combination of silma “silver, shining white” and the root ᴹ√RIL (Ety/RIL, SIL), similar to its later etymology.

References ✧ Let/148, 425; LotR/1033-1034; LotRI; MRI; PE17/19, 47, 112; PM/30, 363; PMI; RGEO/65; S/33; SA/ril, sil

Glosses

Variations

Inflections

Silmarillion genitive plural “of the Silmarils” ✧ S/33
Silmarilli plural “radiance of pure light” ✧ Let/148
Silmarilli plural   ✧ Let/425; LotR/1033; MRI/Silmaril; PM/30; PMI/Silmaril; SA/sil

Elements

silima “crystal substance devised by Fëanor” ✧ RGEO/65; SA/sil
RIL “brilliant (light), brilliance” ✧ PE17/47; PE17/112 (RIL); PM/363; SA/ril
SIL “shine (white or silver)” ✧ Let/425

Element In


ᴹQ. Silmaril (Silmarill-) pn.

See Q. Silmaril for discussion.

References ✧ Ety/MIR, RIL, SIL; LRI; TII; WRI

Variations

Related

Inflections

Silmarilli plural ✧ Ety/MIR; Ety/RIL

Elements

silma “silver, shining white” ✧ Ety/SIL
ᴹ√RIL “glitter” ✧ Ety/SIL

Cognates

Derivations

Phonetic Developments

ᴹ✶silima-rille > Silmarille [silimarille] > [silimarill] > [silmarill] > [silmaril] ✧ Ety/RIL

ᴱQ. Silmaril pn. “*Moon-pearl”

See Q. Silmaril for discussion.

References ✧ GL/67; LT1/128; LT1A/Silmarilli; LT1I/Silmarilli

Variations

Inflections

Silmarilli plural ✧ LT1/128; LT1A/Silmarilli; LT1I/Silmarilli

Elements

Sil “Moon; Rose” ✧ LT1A/Sil
marilla “pearl” ✧ LT1A/Silmarilli

Cognates

Derivations