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Quenya lessons 11-14

Lesson 6

The verb 'to be'

There are three known forms of this verb in Quenya:

n, nar (is, are) - present
nauva (will be) - future
n, ner (was) - past

These forms can be combined, like all other verbs, with pronominal endings:

nan, nany- I am
nal, naly- you are
nat- you are (intimate singular)
nas, nary- he, she, it is
nalm/nalv/namm- we are (exclusive/inclusive/dual)
nant- they are

Note: It is permissable to leave out the copula and use an independant form of the pronoun instead.

The verb a

This verb has a similar meaning to the verb to be. It is used to denote the presence or existence of something. It's present tense and imperitive is a, ("it is", "let it be"). It's past tense is eng and the future, euva, though the latter is not certain.

Ma and sa

The question words we discussed in a previous lesson all start with ma. It is believed that the word ma, used by itself, can turn a statement into a question. Sa is a word that translates to "that".

Lesson 12-Partitive plural

Quenya has three forms of plural; ordinary plural, dual, and partitive plural. We already discussed the first two in earlier lessons. This lesson discusses the latter form.
The ordinary plural implies that we are talking about all of something (ex: Wheels are round), whereas the partitive plural implies some, any, a few of something (ex: Some people are tall). It can also denote something of a larger entity, or something that is part of a larger group.
The adjective accompanying a partitive plural noun takes on the normal plural form. Case-suffixes are applied to the noun even if an adjective or a pronoun follows behind the noun.
The partitive plural is formed by adding the suffix -li to the end of the noun. Words ending in -r, -n and -s change that ending to -l, and nouns that end in -t take on an additionnal -e. If a noun has a special stem form it is applied before adding the partitive plural ending, except for nouns whose normal forms end in -r, -n or -s. These change to -l just like before.

To combine case endings with the partitive plural, the following changes must be made:
-for the possessive and instrumental case, the final -i is lengthened, to either -va or -nen, but only before -l. Before -ll, the -i is not lengthened.
-for the genitive case, the ending -on is added, and for the dative case, -n.
-for the locative, ablative and allative case, either the singular endings, -ss, -llo and -nna, or the plural endings, -ssen, -llon and -nnar (The plural endings are preffered).

Lesson 13- Quenya numbers

In lesson 9, we saw the first nine numbers and ordinals. We will see them again, plus some other useful ones.

Cardinal numbers
munta zero
min one
atta two
neld three
canta four
lemp five
enqu six
otso seven
tolto eight
nert nine
cainen ten
minqu eleven
yunqu, rasta twelve

13 to 19 are formed by adding the suffix -ca to the number words for 3 to 9:
nelca thirteen
canca fourteen
lenca fifteen
enca sixteen
occa seventeen
tolca eighteen
nerca* nineteen

The multiples of 10 (20 to 90) are formed by adding the suffix -cainen to the number words:
yucainen twenty
nelcainen thirty
cancainen fourty
lemincainen fifty
eneccainen sixty
otsocainen seventy
tolcainen eighty
nercainen* ninety
tuxa one hundred

To write numbers, the unit is written first, and after the multiple of 10 is written (ex: tolto nelcainen-thirty eight). Numbers between 100 and 200 are written in the same way.
110 and 120 can be written two ways:
cainen tuxa, minquecainen 110
yucainen tuxa, yunquecainen 120

200 to 900 are written after the same fashion of the multiples of 10, except with the suffix -tuxa:
yutuxa 200
neltuxa 300
cantuxa 400
Other known numbers are:
hm 1000
mindra one million

Note: When the number words from 20 upwards are followed by a noun, this noun is in the partitive plural.

* The words for 19 and 90 changed to suit the new form of the word 9, nert. The given forms of these words are hca and huecainen.


minya first
tatya second
nelya third
canta fourth
lempa fifth
enqua sixth
otsa seventh
tolta eighth
nerta ninth
quaina tenth
minqua eleventh
yunqua twelfth

* The word perya is translated to half.


These are used when something happens a certain number of times and are used as adverbs. They are:
eru once
y twice
nel thrice
can four times

All the higher quotientials are formed by adding the suffix -llum.
lemillum five times
enquellum six times
callum ten times
tuxallum one hundred times.

Lesson 14

Wishing formulas

In lesson 6, we spoke briefly of the word nai, "be it that", used at the beginning of a sentance when we want to express a wish, something we hope will happen. The word nai can also be translated to "may", "I hope", "I wish" and "probably". Nai is used when there is a strong probability that something will happen. There exists another word, c, which has similar meaning to nai, with the additionnal translation "maybe". C is mostly used when there is a strong doubt that something will happen.

Note: The verb following either nai or c is always in the future tense.

Conditional sentances

In English, a conditional sentance begins with either with or if. In the former case, it is certain that something will happen; in the latter case, there is a doubt.

The Quenya word for "with" is r, and the word for "if", mai (or ai). If you wish to express doubt over another part of a sentance, either the word nai or c are added to the end of the sentance without r or mai.

The passive voice

In lesson 6, we saw how adjectives are formed with verbs, making the passive participle. The passive participle can also be used to form passive sentances, as we will see here. A passive sentance is when the subject undergoes the action of the verb, unlike an active sentance where the subject does the action.
In case you don't remember, passive participles are formed:
-for primary verbs, the ending -na is added, except when the word ends in -c, -t or -p. The ending -ina is added in that case. Words ending in -l take on the ending -da.
-for a-stem verbs, the ending -ina is added.
-passive participles agree in number.

To make a passive sentance, the copula n ("is") is inserted before the passive participle. The adjective is thus in the predicative position. Remember that this adjective becomes plural when the subject is plural.

The Quenya passive voice only has three tenses, since n does not have a seperate perfect tense. They are: present tense/aorist, past/perfect tense and future tense.

The agent in a passive sentance performs the action. The agent is in the instrumental case. Passive participles used as an adjective can also have an agent.

Passive infinitives

When a passive sentance contains a verb in the infinitive, that verb takes on the prefix a-. When the verb begins with a vowel, a hyphen (-) is inserted before the prefix and the verb stem.
Also, with some verbs, old Elvish stems appear when the prefix is applied. (More on this in lesson 15)