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Thread: The loveliest word

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Which is your loveliest word of Tolkien books? and why? Mine is Nimloth. It has some elements I really like. First of all, it's a tree, it was a present from the Valar and remains the light of Valinor. Moreover, it was the hope for men. Meanwhile the tree lived, man would live (or at least the kings would lead mankind). Trees are magic. Their roots are connected with the deep soil down the earth and their branches always grow searching for the light above in the high sky... I'm very sensitive today, I don't want to seem stupid but there are days....

Osgilliath, the dome of the stars! I think it pretty much has to do with how I imagine it! I picture it as a  mighty circular hall, in the same design as the King's hall of  Minas Tirith, with Statues of the Great Kings of men standing vigil all around! In the middle stands a great pedestal where the Palantir resides, reflecting its surroundings in its dark surfaces.


Maybe the dome itself is made of some strange black stone, like Orthanc, which at Night reflects the stars or varda on its surface and maybe by some arts is visible on the inside...

What a beautiful place! I can also imagine it. It seems that all of us are staring at the stars lately or looking above as if we were waiting for something.

Ah! I remember you posted something about studying cosmology, didn't you Thorin?

I am not studying cosmology per se, but I am interested in it. I like reading about the stars, galaxies and the universe. When you think in term of the universe all of our doings here on earth seem so petty and unimportant! 

I totally agree.

For me its Ithilien.  It just melts off the tongue, what a beautiful name for a beautiful place.  Ithilien "Moon Land".

Beautiful thread Elbereth.

Undomiel-- evenstar.It sounds like a whisper and a sigh. A star to gaze at and share your secrets with, a star to pray under for victory over the unnatural darkness of evil. Thorin, that was beautiful and yours also Brego it is an enchanting hauntingly beautiful word.

I always loved the name "Elessar" - there is something powerful, but also mystical and kind of romantic in it. It suits Aragorn well, and the translation confirms my feelings. Both elvish names Elbereth and Undomiel are amazing in my opinion - they have their own melodies (which I find characteristic when it comes to elvish languages) and they have their "elvish" dignity.

I like the sound of male Hobbit names - Bilbo, Frodo, Otto, Longo, Bingo etc.  - they define hobbits really well, aren't they? Fun, easygoing, simple.

Among geographic names my favourites are Aman (sounds to describe it - pure? sacred?) and Gondor (the name really suggests that it has to be a noble place).

Great choices so far... Osgiliath and Ithilien especially in my opinion! yes! And I'll add Maedhros too... 


... but there are so many! Asfaloth, Amroth, Nimrodel, Galadhon... and on and on. I could not pick one favorite for sure, and would probably not be able to pick a top twenty for example!


Glaurung - the name suggests something strong and large, and something you would fear. I also happen to find it a powerful word just to hear spoken.

Ithildin made from Mithril and Cuivienen and Oiolosse are other of my Fav's.  And Galin Maedhros, wonderful choice.

Brego, "ithildin" is a beautiful word indeed. Like it was holding some kind of amazement in it. And "moon sparkle" definitely would be an amazing thing.

Fornad! I love hearing from you. It always makes me think for one shining moment that Grondy is here, my beloved Grondy, and everything is as it was, when you and Sian and Mellon and all the rest walked the hallowed halls frequently. sigh............

Just listening to your words and descriptions i almost feel like I have entered an enchanted place and any wondrous and tender or amazing thing can come into view. How peaceful, you have no idea how I am drinking it in and appreciate it at this time. thankyou.

Athelas, I dearly love that word, both the sound and meaning. Again the word , like Undomiel presents to me a picture of soft wind, trees-their leaves softly moving and rustling in a gentle warm breeze. And the healing and rest that results from skillful application. The life brought back, limbs , mind and body renewed.

What about Amon Sul, Weathertop? I think the name is very fitting and goes well with ancient condition of the Tower. It conveys both a  mysterious note as well as something very noble.


When you read the Books, Aragorn reference to the old places of Arnor conveys a sense of mystery to you and makes you want to know its history!

Mine would be the beautiful word Elanor, It's a yellow winter flower of Lórien in the shape of a star.  It reminds of a beautiful Summer day with a gentle breeze in a world where everything is perfect.

Hi! I like most of the elvish names for women, their meaning is so beautiful! Galadriel, Undomiel, etc. I agree with Brego in the name of Ithilien for a place. It sounds peaceful and even magical, a kind of paradise. As for Athelas, I always made my mind for this plant to be such as a clover, I don't really know why.     A healing plant, a simple plant that can make people come back to life... Lovely Leelee!

And a name for a man.... well, I think I would choose Beregond (in the LOTR). A loyal man.

... and for a creature Balrog! it scares anyone. Then this would be the most terrific word. Hahaha.

I love Mithrandir, it evokes ancient splendor and wisdom and peace to my heart. As well I love Luthien.

I find Pippin very funny, full of joy and tenderness too; even the pronunciation is cheerful. Merry ain't that good but it suits perfect for a hobbit! Sweet, innocent, kind-hearted creatures.

I do get touched when I see the Shire in the film and all those hobbits taking care of their duties in such a cosy place.

Yes Elbereth the Shire the Shire a beautiful name for a beautiful place. Also Minas Anor and Minas Ithil. The towers of the Sun and Moon. What beautiful creations from our favourite professor.

You are right Brego. It would be marvellous to see those places in reality and move from one to another according to our mood. Anyway, imagination works perfectly and can take us there if we want at any time.

Tolkien created that world for people like us to enjoy it. It's alive in our minds.

Tolkien said it was Sam not Frodo that was the real hero in that he was the common man' as it were, that being that got up in the morning , worked and loved deeply his wife and children, the home, the land and brought stability and beauty to life. And so when I hear that soft Name, just Sam it is soothing and lovely and a name full of life at an even slow and fruitful pace,  age after age. Sam.

Hello everybody; due to personal reasons I have been away a long time; reading your thread, I am crying..I have missed you all so much...may I join in again ?

Favourite word..."Mellon"..."friend".....

How lovely to hear from you Alana. I hope your trials are not too heavy and dark. And what a wonderful word. Welcome back Mellon.

AAAHHH !!...thanks so much , Brego,,,and to all my friends here.....yes, the road has been dark, but "there is a high and ancient beauty , which is forever beyond it's reach" good to be back...

LeeLee, I agree with you. I always thought about Sam to be much more... real person than the others characters in LOTR. I mean - he's so human, he's so normal - like any other average man. He could be anyone's neighbour. And his name completely portrays it - we don't have many Aragorns or Bilbos on this planet, and Sam is a real, popular name. Simple name. Sam is like 'everyman' in some way (although I find it in other characters as well when I'm thinking about it) - he has a plain job, he's story is simple - he just wanted to help his friend and stayed loyal the entire time, and that's the thing that makes him extraordinary - not his history, his connections, his job or his ancestors. And yet he was so important to the story, he's like a link between the fictional characters in the book, and the real, normal people.

I saw this thread and I felt the urge to post. It is such a wonderful thought to rack our minds for the most beautiful of words. One of my favorite's, though so many there are I could not name, would have to be 'Minas Tirith' The name pronounced says so much about the city its self. Elegant beauty, that is said only in honour, for no other way can it be pronounced. Just one of my many thoughts...


Fahv  how true your words, Minis Tirith sounds so magical and luminous and almost divine.

Alana! I never thought i would 'hear' your dear voice again. Life takes a toll on so many and we have to , one by one leave this dear place for a brief while and sometimes forever. Welcome back ! I grieve with you for all your pain and the dark tunnel, but if there ever is a place to come to where you will be understood it is this place, where the dear professor wove so much grief and pain from real life into his work.

Indis your words moved me very much and even more do i appreciate our Sam. He truly is the one any straight thinking girl would be honored to marry, for there would be no ugly surprises , no being abandoned , and such peace and tranquility to just be around him.What blessed children he had. And yet he could be as fierce as any warrior even against the dread orcs and urukai. 

And speaking of the word Mellon, I long for our very own Mellon to come back on for just a little while. After Loss those years ago she was my first friend and then Sian . I miss them so and Lord of All. But the most is our Grondy. That is why it is so wonderful to go down old roads thru the old threads, listen and laugh once more, and have little Cloveress judging us one and all. Hope you are having a wonderful time a uni Cloveress. hugs to all of you.


LeeLee..thank you so much..your words mean so much to are truly the kindest person i have ever known.....big hugs...

What about "Elbereth Gilthoniel"; it is just the sound of the name , it just flows, does it not....and the wraiths could not bear it..Aragorn said at Weathertop that the most deadly name for the Witch King to hear was "Elbereth"...or something like that!!..haha

Indis, you wrote in words my thoughts about Sam. There would be more "Sams" loving and caring about simple things. I have nothing more to say.

Indis, Elbereth, LeeLee

You are so right about Sam; wasn't it great....when Frodo & Sam were resting outside Shelob's Tunnell; Sam wondered if their story would ever be written down; and people would read about it....and now it has been writeen down...and Sam is famous....I believe all this reall happened you see!! i crazy ??

I'm surprised no one has brought this name yet, Laurelindórenan, the land of the valley of Singing Gold! Even if you cannot imagine what it looks like, the name itself and its meaning is wonderful on the tongue and in the ear!


I remember when I first read LOTR and came to the part where Treebeard spoke of Laurelindórenan,
I took a fancy to the word and used to repeat it to myself. I still do that now and then Big Smile Smilie


LeeLee, Elbereth, Alana - I glad you know what I meant describing my thoughts about Sam. I find it hard to put my cogitations into words, especially in a foreign language.

Thorin, "Laurelindórenan" is not an easy word, that would be great if someone suddenly feels the urge to curse - say "Laurelindórenan" and before you finish, the urge to curse is gone Wink Smilie I'm joking now, but the word is beautiful, very flowing. Just a bit hard to repeat. By the way - you wrote before, that you like Amon Sûl - how about amon Hen? I was thinking about Amon Hen entering this thread today. Hill of the Eye. It is so mysterious for me, and considering its purpose it is mysterious and dangerous at the same time. But beautifull.

Ah! I didn't take into account that laurelindorenan could be hard to pronounce. I am atleast bilingual, speaking English and French fluently so I don't really have that much of a problem.


As for amon hen. while it is mysterious I would Still prefer Amon Sul and that would mostly be because I think it to be a more beatiful word when pronounced than Hen.

I agree dear Thorin, Hen does nothing for me, except remind me of eggs and that i am rather hungry.

As for the other gorgeous word, I simply cannot say it, my mouth won't let me. I tried, and I failed. So you must say it for me!

Elbereth Githoniel is special to me. When I am sad or in despair sometimes I say it.

Alana, you are far from crazy. i believe concsciously or un, our beloved professor wrote of these things, having the common man and his struggles which are largely unappreciated or unknown including their works of sacrifice and their valiant attempts to better mankind through sweat, tears, suffering and in my mind they came together as Sam and Frodo, Merry , Pippin, those that the world knew not but saw through eyes like Aragorns that they in the end were quite the heroes of the day. So when we read of Sam's words and then the telling of his feats and the others we get tears in our eyes, for in some small measure our sufferings and those of those we know about are made into a tale as well and it makes it all worth while.

I agree with you Elbereth, thankyou.

You know if we were all in the same room together over supper I would be too busy listening in awe to each of you in the small time alloted to say but a word or two. I should not wish to miss a thing.

LeeLee, I am lucky then - in Polish "Hen' has nothing to do with food Wink Smilie

When we started posting in this thread I thought "Well, there is a lot of lovely words in Middle Earth realm, that has to be a long topic! If we'll think about it long enough we end up writing every word possible.". And new suggestions are coming, and coming and coming!

I'm in love with all those names, it's so hard not to. Did I miss someone writing "Cuiviénen"? Oh, yeah - Brego wrote about this one. Beautiful, really beautiful.

Ilúvatar. Divine name. Immediately reminds me of great, mysterious, timeless light.

Maybe I wouldn't say "loveliest" to describe the another one, but it definitely has a great power in it. I'm talking about the "Nazgûl" word. It sounds... ghostly. I love how Viggo Mortensen says it in the scene, where Aragorn explains to hobbits who the Black Riders really are. It always gives me chills. Can you imagine hearing the word and not seeing a dark, tall, nightmarish figure in your head?

Ilúvatar. Divine name. Immediately reminds me of great, mysterious, timeless light.




A great name, yes (meaning All-father), and possibly the most misspelled name in Tolkien forums all over the web.

Not here though. You've got it right. One L... although I've seen people add an extra L even when they are quoting a passage! Maybe it's some sort of visual thing I guess.

As for the other gorgeous word, I simply cannot say it, my mouth won't let me.


I can help you here my Friend! I pronounce it as Low Ray Lin Dough Ray Nan Elk Grinning Smilie

It's very hard to suggest pronunciation in this way, as when I say English 'low' (as opposed to high) it doesn't sound right to me (for this word)...

... I think the first syllable, for example, is like the sound in English cow. So if you are just using L because of the way the word begins (as seems obvious enough), it could be confusing. 

A great name, yes (meaning All-father), and possibly the most misspelled name in Tolkien forums all over the web.

I forgot about the meaning to be honest. Beautiful, and so powerful. Didn't know it is misspelled so often - I don't remember many double "L" letters in the names created by Tolkien.

Thorin, how about "Calacirya"? I have no idea how to pronounce it, and you seem to have some special abilities when it comes to tongue twisting!

The dough ray bit reminds me of the sound of music Thorin and my voice lessons as a child. But it does break it down and thank you. I will practise it along with susie sells sea shells by the sea side, another thing I struggle intensely with. indecision


And referring back to Polish, what is the word for hen then? And have you ever watched the stunningly beautiful movie called Ladies in Lavender which tells the story about elderly sisters that find a young polish boy near dead who mysteriously washes up on shore from which ship they never find out and the amazing surprise when they see just who he is.?  Masterpiece.

Although Pippen is called that, his real name is Peregrine and i have always loved the sound of that name, because i always see in my mind the bird high in the air , beautiful, graceful , and then suddenly with amazing skill and speed swooping down and catching his prey, showing amazing courage just like our Pippen did at the crucial moments.

What a beautiful post "The loveliest word". Today, is my first day here and  I find this post about the beauty of the words of Tolkien. LOTR is so full of language that is is hard to know where to begin or what to respond to. 

Let me first of all agree with LeeLee who was talking about Sam and how normal he was (How human - how very British).  He was just a gardiner and yet the whole story hinges on his faith, his friendship, his love for Frodo.   To me he is Samwise Gamgee, is left with Rosie at Bag End when all the great elf Lords and ladies and wizards depart to the west.

So normal, so heroic, so normal.  Samwise the Brave!

ah, yes...Samwise...."if I could grow apples like that I would call myself a gardener.....but it was the music that went to my heart..."

Don't you just love him...?....haha...

What about...."Luthien Tinuviel"...doesn't that just sing to your heart.....oh, sorry, did someone already say that ?

Alana, when I was reading "Silmarillion' and I found out  that  "Tinuviel" an elvish name for nightingale I was a little shocked, because the word reminded me of singing birds even when I had no idea what it is supposed to mean. Maybe it was because a lot of art with Luthien featured birds flying around her in a morning sun, but it really is twittering and chirping when you say it. How beautiful!


And referring back to Polish, what is the word for hen then? And have you ever watched the stunningly beautiful movie called Ladies in Lavender which tells the story about elderly sisters that find a young polish boy near dead who mysteriously washes up on shore from which ship they never find out and the amazing surprise when they see just who he is.? Masterpiece.

No, I haven't seen this, but it lookes rather interesting from what you said. I'd like to watch it.

Pippin - yeah, this is a funny name. Peregrin sounds too serious for the way I portray him in my head.

oh Indis, I know; you are so right...somehow you just know it means Nightingale...and when Luthien sang, her voice could entrance anyone!!...she even toppled Melkor from his throne!!...what a gal, eh...he h, heh

What about Nienna? I found it a beautiful name, short but powerful. I would pronounce it with a long "i". It includes beauty, melancholy, mercy, comprehension, etc. I found it terribly noble. Those features are a gift for the people who own them and behave according to them.

And referring back to Polish, what is the word for hen then?

Ah, I forgot to answer!

There is a word "hen" in Polish. You could translate it as "far away", it is often in tales - you know, like when you tell your kids a story and you say "far far aywa there was a castle". You could use "hen" word there. So Amon Hen gives me this kind of distant feeling, intentionally or not.

Elbereth, I forget...was "Nienna" the Vala  who wept for all the sorrows of Middle Earth ??

Yeah!!! that one.


By the way, nice to meet you Alana!

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