the first article i ever published was in an obscure 'zine called the
*rhodomagnetic digest*, around 1950, and it was about the relationship
between linguistics and science/fantasy fiction. (this 'zine is on file in
the UC berkeley library.) oh my prophetic soul! cheers; bill

>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
> - world's writing systems.
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William Bright
Professor Emeritus of Linguistics & Anthropology, UCLA
Professor Adjoint of Linguistics, University of Colorado, Boulder
Editor, Written Language and Literacy
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