Peter T. Daniels wrote:

> Tengwar has something to do
> with Tolkien but I don't know what. Is it the one that works like
> Shavian?

To some degree. Tengwar (in its own world, not in our world)
began as an abjad with vowel signs and evolved into a
full alphabet, both modes eventually being in use simultaneously,
more or less analogous to Hebrew (abjad-style) and Yiddish (alphabet-

Many but not all of the letters are featural. Those which are,
have a vertical part which encodes manner of articulation and a looping
part which encodes place of articulation; e.g. a descender means
"voiceless stop" and a clockwise loop to the left of the descender
means "labial", so the unique letter with both encodes /p/.
Pictures and text at

> Anyway, I don't recall any Tolkien script having an inherent
> unmarked vowel.

In the Tolkien language Quenya when written in Tengwar, the vowel sign
for /a/ is optional because reconstructible. This is not true for
other languages when written in Tengwar (nor for Quenya written in Latin

Not to perambulate || John Cowan <jcowan@...>
the corridors ||
during the hours of repose ||
in the boots of ascension. \\ Sign in Austrian ski-resort hotel