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Thread: gimli's elvish insult

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In the extended edition of the fellowship, when they are trying to enter Lorien, what does Gimli say in elvish to Haldir that is so insulting. After Gimli says that Aragorn replies with "Now that was not so smart" or something like that. So does anyone know what Gimli says?
Gimli: "So much for the legendary courtesy of the Elves! Speak words we can also understand!"
Haldir: "We have not had dealings with the Dwarves since the Dark Days."
Gimli: "And you know what this Dwarf says to that? Ishkhaqwi ai durugnul!" (I spit upon your grave!)
Aragorn: "That was not so courteous."

What a temper..

Gimli: "So much for the legendary courtesy of the Elves! Speak words we can also understand!"
Haldir: "We have not had dealings with the Dwarves since the Dark Days."
Gimli: "And you know what this Dwarf says to that? Ishkhaqwi ai durugnul!" (I spit upon your grave!)
Aragorn: "That was not so courteous."

Where did you get that translation Rhapsody? is such a nice site. Every time I Elvish... I think of Elvis Presley.

The real fast shortcut ... here ya go.
Thanks man!

I need to get my other Avatar back. Or to quote Eowyn: "I am no man!!"

I am really a woman. I am.
I too thank you Rhapsody and Floyd for answering that question. I wondered what Gimli had said that offended Haldir , but didn't know where to look it up. I don't remember that scene from the book either, but then again I haven't read it for about a year now. I'm surprised Haldir didn't knock Gimli flat for such an insult, but perhaps that would have been beneath his dignity as an elf.
Gimi's insult to Haldir in fact, didn't occurr in the book. He only spoke when it became blindfold time and he was more concerned about his honor not being accepted, than putting down Elfkind.

I think Arvedui's "Thanks man!" was more in the neutral generic "Mankind" mode rather than the gender specific, but I guess what matters is how it was taken, so I'll butt out now. Elf With a Big Grin Smilie
LOL That was ok, I just had a perfect excuse to quote Eowyn. Although many see me as a man, but that has more to do with the nick. Fat Santa Smilie
I think Rhapsody is a very feminine nick, like Melody.
I have always felt that the Rhapsody nick was feminine; while the white ship avatar has felt masculin, though ships are spoken of as 'she' and the whiteness represents the purity of newly fallen snow. Were the avatar dressed in a pastel colored, long flowing, gossamer, gown there probably wouldn't be any confusion: as long as the nick used wasn't "Phred". Elf With a Big Grin Smilie
Rhapsody sounds feminine to me, as does Melody, thats only cos they were angels on Captain Scarlet...i think ill stop there.......god im too young
thought that was a dudes name myself, probably cuz i not sure if i'm pronouncing it correctly... well now i know not to call refer to you as a man. Although when i saying something to chics i sometimes end the sentence with "man." but the girls i hang out with don't mind, man... Wink Smilie
Well I am used to it by now Cool Smilie Although it can be quite funny when they realize you are a woman. Smiling Santa Smilie

Regarding my Avatar, I have been trying to uload one for quite some weeks now, but it doesn't wanna play nice.
The avatars seem to not like us anymore Sad Smilie
wasn`t this thread supposed to be about gimlis insult?
To be quite honest G’sh, i think this thread died many moons ago Sad Smilie never good, will someone resurect it???

last post:
has made 514 posts is a Nazgul from Minas Morgul and is not Online.
Posted Thursday 23rd December 2004 (04:46pm)

Hey ive just noticed our Avatars go pretty well together Big Smile Smilie
And the translation of the Movie Gimli's insult is up there for you to read. The Book Gimli wasn't the class clown and didn't insult those he was hoping would provide succour to the Fellowship in their time of need. Though he was stiff-necked when it became blindfold time.
Not to mention, a Dwarf would never ever use his own language in the company of non-Dwarves.
So i see that Aragorn speaks many languages fluently, very clever he is
Virumor is completely correct that no Dwarf would speak Khuzd’l (other than place names) around non-Dwarves. There is no chance that Aragorn knew Dwarvish (even Gandalf didn't). However, this is the movies... and only one word in the sentence is Tolkien's Khuzd’l, anyway. The only explanation I can think of (as gathered from discussion of this topic on other sites) is that perhaps Aragorn obviously recognized Gimli's hostile tone to mean he had said an insult. Or, Aragorn knowing Dwarvish is just yet another inconsistency with the books.
There is no chance that Aragorn knew Dwarvish (even Gandalf didn't)

Actually in the FOTR just before they enter Moria, doesn't Gandalf claim he once knew every spell in Elvlish, Men, Dwarves, and even Orcs?

I'd be very surprised if Gandalf didn't know dwarf speech.
I'd be very surprised if Gandalf didn't know dwarf speech.
Jumping Flame SmilieSURPRISE!!! Jumping Flame Smilie
'I once knew every spell in all the tongues of Elves or Men or Orcs, that was ever used for such a purpose. I can still remember ten score of them without searching my mind. But only a few trials, I think, will be needed; and I shall not have to call on Gimli for words of the secret dwarf-tongue that they teach to none. - from 'A Journey in the Dark' in FotR
Teacher Smilie

Of course we were talking about the movie here, so the above may not count, because PJ's script may have said otherwise. Elf With a Big Grin Smilie
I never really understood the dwarves in the Hobbit. On the one hand they were rich in history and when Thoran Oakenshield is described he is so fabulous and noble looking.
I could not tell if they were just folk who liked to keep to themselves and were naturally suspicious of all others, elves, men and perhaps a little less of Hobbits. Or were they naturally arrogant and rude because of their great ingenuity and skill in their crafts and they unbelievable ability to make dead stone sort of come alive with their creations?
I never did figure that out.
So Gimli's behaviour when he had to be blindfolded in the book, or his reaction to Haldir in the movie cannot be explained by someone like me. I don't know how I would behave were I a dwarf that had pain and hostile feelings still because of problems between elves and dwarves in the past. Would I be blustery and try to cover any emotional feelings or would I j ust be rude because that was me? I don't know, but Gimli's ultimate love for Legolas tells me he could not have been that bad or Legolas would have loathed his lack of social graces.
I could not tell if they were just folk who liked to keep to themselves and were naturally suspicious of all others, elves, men and perhaps a little less of Hobbits.

Since the first Dwarves used to be hunted by Elves in the First Age, and since Dwarves destroyed Menegroth and were butchered by Laiquendi lead by Beren, and awoke Durin's Bane in Moria in 1980 III, there had always been kind of a 'love-hate relationship' between Dwarves and Elves, though this is perhaps too exaggerated. 'Friction' might be the correct term here.

Once one had won the trust of Dwarves (which can be done easiest by sharing their love for craftsmanship), they proved to be stalwart allies for all time. Note the great friendship and cooperation between Ost-in-Edhil and Khazad-D’m in the Second Age, and between E’l and the Dwarves of Nogrod and Belegost.

I would not say they keep to themselves, since they often leave their underground homes to deal with Men - there is after all cooperation between Erebor and the men of Dale.

I think the fact that there's friction/mistrust between Elves and Dwarves, is typical for the end of the Third Age... after all after the Second Age, the Last Alliance slowly shattered and Elves and Men/Dwarves had very few interactions, with the Elves rarely leaving their safe havens of the Woodland Realm, Rivendell and L’thlorien.

Nevertheless, when the storm was brewing near the end of the Third Age, each side managed to set aside these minor differences (minor, at least, compared to what was going on) although they still surfaced now and then, especially in L’thlorien.
The reasons given in the above post made by Viromor may contribute to the overall suspicion between Elves and Dwarves but there is one major quote you have all missed:

"But when the time comes I will awaken them, and they shall be to thee as children; and often strife shall arise between thine and mine, the children of my adoption and the children of my choice." - The Silmarillion, Iluvatar speaking to Aule

Other possible reasons why they are like this towards eachother are as follows:
Dwarves greed for gold (remember in The Hobbit it says Elrond did not approve of Dwarves and there greed for gold),
The Dwarves were actually the Firstborn. However they were laid to sleep until after the coming of the 'official' firstborn. Perhaps Elves know this but do not accept it,
Some already reasons given are that they destroyed the Thousand Caves and killed Great Thingol, and indirectly caused the ruin of Doriath,
Elves are naturally proud and think themselves supirior to Men and Dwarves in many ways. Thus when they ask a Dwarf to do something they expect it done. However Dwarves are often too stubborn to heed there requests (as the example of Gimli shows).
I always laugh at that part in the movie!

"We could have shot the dwarf in the dark he breathes so loudly."
Sure that's not a direct quote...oh well!!

Smile Smilie

Concerning the insult. Did Haldir understand the dwarvish insult, and thus the dwarvish language, to get angry?
Gimli insulted someone in his own, secret Dwarven language nobody save Dwarves speak?! What a chicken! No wonder he hides behind/under the skirt of a she-elf Queenie!
Well at leat that shows there confusion in the elvish camp as the queenie, prefering the dwarf to his own servant, did not turn the insolent dwarf into stone! Serves Haldir right!!
since when did she turn anything to stone???

-- I think the implication that Aragorn understood the Dwarvish in the movie had something to do with the screenwriter's or the director's desire to display the wealth of Aragorn's experience in the world. In the process it mutilates the depth and mystery of the Dwarf's culture, but apparently the scriptwriters thought more of the need to show off Aragorn than to show off the Dwarves.

hello i am new to this site so greetings fellow ringers.  I am not too sure what Gimli is saying, though i have often wondered myself. Aragorn was not best pleased and told him he was not so polite. I think it must have been an insult of sorts.blush

Hello, and welcome Iamnoman! We do know what the filmmakers intended Gimli to say -- it's already posted in the thread -- but I will echo some points already made, and add my own.


A) it's not in the book.


B) it very arguably goes against what Tolkien notes in the book (which is different from A), with respect to the speaking and understanding of Dwarvish.


C) I would argue that Tolkien's Gimli (the real and only Gimli in any event) would in theory never say such a thing in this circumstance.


D) with respect to Tolkien's languages, what film-Gimli said is fan-invented film-Dwarvish. 


All this, in my opinion, is quite unnecessary; and to my mind another example of the filmmakers putting Tolkien aside to create what they think makes good film.

To be honest it wouldn't be hard to guess if you was being insulted in any language because of tone of voice and body language they merely could have been reacting to that rather than actually knowing the content of what was said... 

Yet even if Aragorn only guessed at an insult due to these things, the Dwarves did not use their tongue openly, outside of noted exceptions.

Woah woah woah, hold your Shadowfax. Excuse me for ressurrecting a 3 year old thread, but this was never fully stated (or I missed it).

The question is "Gimli's Elvish Insult", and I always assumed it was Elvish. So, was it Elvish or Dwarf language? I assumed it was Elvish as Aragorn seems to understand, and Haldir isn't very impressed with it either. Also, no one but Dwarves can speak their language. However, I can also understand speculations of the character's assuming it was an insult, and not actually knowing what he said.

So basically, did he speak Dwarvish or Elvish?

It is an insult in Khuzdul, but Gimli would never actually use Khuzdul in the company of elves, men, hobbits and an Istari. He would also probably not insult them at all, as he did hope for help from them. I don't think Gimli would speak elvish, he is young and has little experience with elves (he has negative stereotypes but quickly befriends an elf showing that he has never actually known an elf very well). Another thing is that the dwarves language was not really developed as much as the elvish language, so that was probably fan invented. However, it wasn't in the book, it was invented by PJ. So, it could not have been either Khuzdul or Sindarin, or Queyena. I think the title was referring to who he was insulting not the language which he was using. PJ did make that Khuzdul, but that is in direct opposition with the books.

So basically, did he speak Dwarvish or Elvish?

Welcome Frodo!

As noted this is a fan invented attempt at Dwarvish, not Elvish. The example in question, Ishkhaqwi ai durugnul, contains the sound -sh- for example, which occurred in Westron, Dwarvish, and Orkish, but was not found in Quenya or Sindarin.


I guess we'll never really know, which is a shame! I understand that this scene contradicts from the book, and it's not in Gimli's character, but even still this will bother me a bit. Oh well, thanks for the information!

I guess we'll never really know, which is a shame!

I'm not sure what you are referring to here. The person who invented this line has noted that it is intended to sound like Dwarvish, but we already know it was meant for the films in any case, and is not true Dwarvish [Tolkien's Dwarvish].

That is, in the context of the films, it's intended to be Dwarvish, not Elvish.

By the way, if anyone is interested, the fan who did a lot of the language invention for the films has a blog...

... it's called midgardsmal, and just add a .com to find it.