Parma Eldalamberon ... The Book of Elven Tongues ... is a journal of linguistic studies of fantasy literature, especially of the Elvish languages and nomenclature in the works of J.R.R. Tolkien. It is published at irregular intervals as sufficient material becomes available.

By special arrangement with Christopher Tolkien and with the permission of the Tolkien Estate, previously unpublished material from the manuscripts of J. R. R. Tolkien have been published as special editions of Parma Eldalamberon.

Revised Printing of



The Qenya Phonology and Lexicon

by J. R. R. Tolkien

edited by

Christopher Gilson, Carl F. Hostetter, Patrick H. Wynne, and Arden R. Smith


Parma Eldalamberon No. 12 - Revised 3rd Printing
11 July 2011

Parma Eldalamberon Issue No. 12 contains the "Qenya Lexicon" in its entirety.  This is a dictionary of the language of the Elves of Tol Eressea as created by J. R. R. Tolkien.  It is organized by roots, related words being grouped together under a designation of the sounds that they share due to their relationship.  Thus, for example, the Qenya words alda 'tree', aldea 'tree-shadowed', aldeon 'avenue of trees', alalme 'elm (tree)', and almo, aldamo 'the broad of the back from shoulder to shoulder', are all given under the root ALA 'spread'.  Excerpts from the Lexicon were published in the Appendices to The Book of Lost Tales, those items that threw light on the names of people and places in the Lost Tales.  This edition includes the whole dictionary, which runs to about 600 roots and over 3000 entries.

In his remarks about the Lexicon, Christopher Tolkien said, "Some early phonological description does exist for Qenya, but this became through later alterations and substitutions such a baffling muddle (while the material is in any case intrinsically extremely complex) that I have been unable to make use of it" (LT1, p. 247).  This description, called "The Sounds of Qenya," is also very interesting, as it traces the phonological development of the language from its origins in primitive Eldarin.  Because of the light it throws on both the Qenya Lexicon and the Gnomish Lexicon, we have included this Qenya Phonology in Parma Eldalamberon No. 12.

The Qenya Lexicon entries are fully cross-referenced to both The Book of Lost Tales and to the Gnomish Lexicon (I-Lam na-Ngoldathon, published in Parma Eldalamberon No. 11).  Both the Phonology and Lexicon, to which J. R. R. Tolkien gave the overall title of Qenyaqetsa, are presented with editorial commentary on changes made in the manuscript, and the relation of this linguistic work to Tolkien's other contemporary stories, poems, and drawings.


Issue 12 is

Out of Print

Parma Eldalamberon is sold on a per-issue basis.

Issues Currently Available
Order via PayPal on the pages at these links:
Issue 21 | Issue 20 | Issue 19
Issue 16
Issue 7 | Issue 6
Out of Print
Issue 18 | Issue 17
Issue 15 | Issue 14 | Issue 13 | Issue 12
Issue 11 | Issue 10 | Issue 9 | Issue 8
Photocopies of issues 1 through 5 are available from the 
Mythopoeic Society


A retrospective collection of cover art, title pages and other

illustrations by artists Patrick Wynne and Adam Christensen

appear in the Eldalamberon Gallery

Return to Eldalamberon

page design, colorization and animations © 2001–2002 Adam Victor Christensen