Quenya Phonetics

Ancient Quenya Phonetics P18: initial [s] plus continuant became voiceless continuant

AQ. initial [s] plus continuant became voiceless continuant; [sm-|sn-|sr-|sl-|sj-|sw-] > [m̥-|n̥-|r̥-|l̥-|j̊-|w̥-]

In Ancient Quenya, any initial [s] appearing before a voiced continuant vanished, unvoicing the following consonant in the process. This occurred before nasals m, n, liquids l, r, and the semi-vowels y, w. Tolkien described this process in some detail in both the first and second versions of his outlines of Quenya phonetic development (OP1, OP2) from the 1930s and 1950s respectively.

Quenya Phonetics: Introduction

I was originally planning on doing a bunch of research and organizing all of my notes before starting to write about Quenya phonetic developments. However, that’s turning into a real slog and I am finding the need to break up the basic research with some writing. I have therefore decided to write some draft posts once certain phonetic rules are properly organized.