Quenya Phonetics P25: [ij], [uw] became [i], [u]

Quenya Phonetics P25: [ij], [uw] became [i], [u]

Q. [ij], [uw] became [i], [u]; [ijV|uwV] > [iV|uV]

Just as [ji], [wu] became [i], [u], the semi-vowels, y, w vanished when they followed the vowels i, u respectively. Such combinations are relatively rare. They mainly arose:

  1. When spirants vocalized before y, w: Vʒj, Vʒw > Vij, Vuw (PE19/75-76).
  2. When intervocalic y diphthongized after long vowel: V̄jV > VijV (PE19/62).
  3. From ancient suffixes like the abstract noun/gerundal suffix ✶-(i)yē > Q. -ie (PE17/58; PE22/137) and the perfect suffix ✶-iyē > Q. -ie (PE18/086).

Examples include:

Conceptual Development: Tolkien mentioned similar reductions of semi-vowels in the Qenyaqesta of the 1910s:

i̯, u̯ vanished after e/i o/u respectively in certain frequent cases ... vanishes after i- (iı̯i > ī) ... vanishes after ú (uu̯u > ú) (PE12/12).