https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Iliektrainzzzzz

Project Elvish

Hello everyone! I want to introduce a new language! It is the Lord of the Rings' Language of the Elves! Also known as Sindarin (Conversational Elvish). The proper term for Elvish is Tengwar, and I speak this mythical language of middle earth!

I NEED ALOT OF SUPPORT, SO PLEASE HELP, THANK YOU!

Navaer (Farewell), Starfox9774

April 19, 2014

170 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BearlyThere

We already have Klingon and dothraki so Elvish is a must. Also the language of the Ents would be welcome.

October 8, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iSamuelHoffman

I speak Entish. But it takes me forever to say "Good morning."

July 3, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SushiSpinner23

lol

July 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ElltheWyverary

:D Ha!

May 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mirimi06

I wholeheartly agree that Sindarian deserves a spot on duolingo

July 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hambo125

They already have Sindarin in the Incubator

So I would just go to the contribute to a course page and start helping

October 14, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

Actually, Sindarin is NOT in the Incubator and a course is NOT currently being developed. It is just an option in the application.

November 3, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ISpeakAlien

But the fact that it is an option suggests that it is eventually going to be added.

August 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gunanaomi

Does anyone know if the Elvish course is still happening? :)

July 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WrigGeor

I have thought about signing up to contribute to a Quenya for English speakers course, as it is the more complete of the two (the other being Sindarin) and I am fluent in it. However, popularity-wise Quenya isn't as well-known as Sindarin, and so I probably wouldn't contribute if the course didn't have enough interest. I'm also in my final year of schooling and so probably wouldn't sign up until after November so I'm not worrying about the progress of the course during exams and assignments. Another thing I have considered is trying to pick up Sindarin within the next few months and contribute to that course, but I've found Sindarin to be a little different to Quenya (mainly pronunciation-wise) and so the choice is a little hard to make.

In short, I'm happy to sign up for the Quenya course and contribute to it once I have graduated, but I wouldn't do it if the general consensus was that people would prefer to learn Sindarin rather than Quenya.

July 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/danielmonteiro16

I know a group on facebook where Quenya is being studied for a lot of persons, I'll ask them for it.

July 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/literalmind

I would LOVE if Duolingo had Sindarin. I've been looking through Dreamingfifi's Sindarin Textbook course on Realelvish, but I find that I've become way too used to Duo's way of learning! (However, as others have pointed out, Tengwar only refers to the script, not the actual language, so that kind of makes me question your authority on the subject.) The Tengwar themselves don't even need to be introduced if that would present too many font problems--just transcribe everything into the Latin alphabet. I really hope this becomes a reality! I mean, if Klingon can make it on here, surely Elvish can too!!

July 27, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

I love Sindarin and Quenya but Klingon has many advantages over either of them so it makes a little more sense as a Duo course. (As far as I know) Klingon is a fairly complete language with 3000+ words and a fleshed-out grammar that allows for full conversation in that language and furthermore the creator is still around to answer questions and add to the language to fill in the gaps. Unfortunately, both of the Elvish tongues fall short on every one of those points. Whenever you "learn" Sindarin or Quenya through one website or another, you are really learning one interpretation of that language because Tolkien constantly tweaked them in both grammar and vocabulary such that it is difficult (impossible maybe) to reconstruct either language in a way that would be suitable to a Duolingo course without making up, reinterpreting, or extrapolating a significant portion of the language.

I feel like I'm always the bearer of bad news on this subject and I don't want to give anyone the impression that I dislike the idea because I was myself excited about a Quenya or Sindarin Duolingo course at one time, until I started to study them in a little more depth and realized that, as much as I hate to say it, I don't think it would really work.

July 27, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/literalmind

True. You have a good point. I got myself all confused just yesterday about Tengwar modes.

July 28, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WrigGeor

I'd honestly prefer Quenya as a course, as I'm already a beginner in that, but Sindarin would definitely be a great addition to Duolingo!

July 30, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EssenceOfRandom

I agree, Sindarin would be totally awesome.

October 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rockerbox

I'd be extremely interested in learning Sindarin. Are you still working on this?

August 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kkbruv

Hi Starfox,

I understand you want to promote Tengwar but I don't know if Duolingo will except this new language. I support you 101%.

Navaer, Oropher Mithrandir -Aerandir Elensar

April 19, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/amazingchef

Quenya also!

June 12, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RYK90

I want this. I need this. Can this still happen? Please?

May 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IHaveABonheur

Tolkien's Elvish must be the most beautiful and famous constructed language ever originating from fiction... If Duo has Klingon it should definitely get Sindarin or Quenya. I'd really like to see that happen!

December 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tyelcanaro

Hmm... You know, tengwar is the writing system.

March 4, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/veridisqvo

"The inescapable fact is that no one can learn to speak a language without a corrective speaker or model against which to gauge grammaticality and comprehensibility (be it an already fluent speaker or speech community, or a comprehensive, fully descriptive grammar and pedagogical course). Since Tolkien never fixed his languages firmly or described them completely enough to provide any such comprehensive and corrective model (that never being his goal), and since thus even Tolkien himself was never able to speak Quenya or Sindarin fluently or casually (that too never being his goal), it is consequently a further inescapable fact that no one has or ever will be able to speak Quenya and Sindarin, any more than anyone will ever (again) be able to speak, say, Etruscan or any other fragmentarily-attested non-living language."

Source: http://www.elvish.org/FAQ.html

March 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

Thank you for providing that. Despite my top comment where I provide several reasons why I do not think Duolingo is an appropriate venue to study these languages, people still comment on here hoping the course will happen, clearly not having read my comment or having studied the language at all to understand its history and purpose.

I would also point people to another quote from the link above:

"How do I learn Quenya and Sindarin?

"That depends on what you mean by "learn". If you mean "learn" in the sense in which one can "learn German" or "learn Japanese", then the short answer is that you can't; see the previous question [part of which the previous poster quoted]. If you mean "learn" in the sense of "learn Gothic" or "learn" any other fragmentarily-preserved, non-living language, then one answer is to read well-researched, thoroughly documented, purely descriptive articles and discussions about the languages, based upon Tolkien's writings and free from artificial, utilitarian agendas; and to do so in conjunction with an independent examination of the data cited to verify claims. But the best way to engage with Tolkien's art-languages is to simply study this evidence for yourself, to read and ponder Tolkien's own compositions and commentaries. It must be remembered that Tolkien is the sole and final authority on his languages; anything not written by Tolkien is strictly speaking not Quenya or Sindarin, but is simply more or less reasonable conjecture based on a selective set of data and supposed facts derived from them.

This is not to say that the artificial, homogenized Quenya presented on Helge Fauskanger's Ardalambion site, or the pseudo-Sindarin inventions of David Salo for Peter Jackson's films, are without interest or merit (but neither are they without serious problems); but rather that meaningful study of Tolkien's languages cannot be achieved simply by mastering the artificial, simplified, patch-work systems of these popularizers. Instead, the study must be always and primarily based and centered on reading, pondering, and understanding the exemplars and statements that Tolkien himself made, in their context and in relation to one another, across the decades of his life and the millennia of internal development they were created by Tolkien to exhibit."

March 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kalexbro

Starfox9774, Duolingo doesn't have a lot of staff, so there isn't a lot of people who can work on the languages. Many are still in beta because not enough people speak those languages. Their primary focus is on the real languages, but if you can find people who can "speak" Elvish, and who are willing to help contribute to the course, then you can pitch the idea to the Duo staff.

April 19, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kkbruv

Support the dude! I speak Elvish too!

April 19, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iSamuelHoffman

I'll help! I speak and fully support LOTR languages!

July 3, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/J.R.RTolkien

iSamuelHoffman where did you learn?i realy want to speak tengwar

June 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

But most importantly to those interested in learning elvish (Quenya or Sindarin), see here: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/24074665

September 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SirAmelius

i would totally learn it! Just go for the one that is most complete rather than most popular.

October 11, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WrigGeor

Unfortunately, that would mean Quenya - it /is/ the most complete however since it is rarely spoken in the books and movies not many people have even attempted to learn it. I'd be more than happy to contribute to a Quenya course, but one contributor is not enough to bring a course to beta in a sufficient amount of time.

Also, with the development of a Quenya course, I'm pretty sure there would be a case of what is happening with the Czech course - the completed percentage would constantly be at a near-beta level even as we only begin building the tree, as we wouldn't be able to predict how many words/lessons we would include.

But, as I have said before, I'm more than happy to contribute to a Quenya-English course, and in about five weeks I'll have quite a bit of time on my hands to get started if there's enough interest in the project.

October 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/giamma-99

I'd like to help for Quenya course, as I know quite well its grammar

December 17, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/swingbeatnik7

Any updates?

December 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JurgenLethbridge

i am keen to learn it, if it happens

January 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KellyPeed

Aiya,

Woah o.o

There's one thing though, Sindarin doesn't have as complete grammar as Quenya does. Linguistics still have about 20 more years of work to get through to have all of what Tolkein invented before he died, so until then I suggest on holding off on Sindarin and try Quenya first.

I also have an idea for the Tengwar. You know how it has the "select bread" or whatever and there's a picture of bread with the word in another language under it? What if we could do that but insert the Tengwar instead of the pictures? (Such as "Select 'bread'" and underneath would be the Tengwar picture for 'masta' or 'bread' with the Quenya translation "Masta" underneath.) If that's not possible we could link a Tengwar lesson at the bottom of each lesson or something.

Oh, and I do speak Quenya so I would be more then glad to help :)

April 30, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Erika2140

I would love to be able to learn Sindarin on here. I have David Salo's book 'A Gateway to Sindarin' however the duolingo format would help me a lot. I hope this course will be realized. I can't wait!

June 8, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/riverthoughts

hahaha i was just noticing there's klingon and valyrian on there so i was just remarking to my husband, "HOW COME THERE IS NO ELVISH?!" so yes, i would be very interestedi nthis!

August 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/felitolhoeks

I wonder if there is still interest in this. It would be amazing to have Sindarin Elvish on Duolingo!

December 4, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BipolarAnt

there's plenty of interest, just not enough of a solid base to build this on

March 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/J.S.Clingman

Hi lliektrainzzzzz, I am fascinated at your project - it sounds like something quite wonderful to see on Duolingo! I am, in fact, a Tolkien fan - however, I have lived in ignorance of his languages. It would be a wonder to see that language on here!!

How is your progress, if I may ask??

:)

Sincerely, Me.

December 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Funguydaman

Count me in

December 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BlackSwordsman6

I'd love to learn proper elvish!

December 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sasha686967

Are you actually going to make the course? I would love to learn Elvish!

December 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/keithcymry

Hi, Iliektrainzzzzz I support your idea, although I cannot contribute. I recently spoke with David Salo, the man who did the Sindarin for The Lord of the Rings movies, and he warned that those holding the rights to JRR Tolkien's works are zealous guardians. Therefore, anything put into the incubator is limited to only what Tolkien himself created since, unlike the creators of Klingon and High Valyrian, he is no longer with us to consult with. Although I think it would be great to learn, I urge caution and suspect the reason Sindarin is not already available has a lot to do with legalities and those holding professor Tolkien's rights.

January 17, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/pont

Hi Starfox9774,

Thanks for volunteering to create this course! You can submit your application at http://incubator.duolingo.com/apply . (Elvish is not explicitly listed, but you can choose "other" in the drop-down.) It may be a while before they get to Elvish since there are a lot of languages in the pipeline already, but if your application is in the system you will be considered when the time comes.

Unfortunately I only know two words of Elvish so I can't help, but I wish you luck with the course!

April 20, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kkbruv

if you know any elvish plz donate it to Starfox.

April 22, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Iliektrainzzzzz

I know alot, and i hope for support (im a serious lotr fan)

April 22, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/J.S.Clingman

Yay Sindarin! It's not fair that Game of Thrones fans get to see Valyrian on Duolingo and that Tolkien's languages are virtually non-existent! :)

December 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/em_green

Totally

December 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/freya903777

Yes!!

June 30, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CodyORB

Sindarin, the language mentioned here, is now available as an option :)

March 12, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Siotara

Where????

April 15, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Siah2222

Where???

March 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Crispie89

This course is available on the "contribute to a course" on the incubater webpage. https://incubator.duolingo.com/apply You will she Sindarin's Shining flag in the drop down menu. Please contribute if you can! <3

April 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

But please read my comments below first...

April 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Siah2222

Thanks!

April 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/patbo

Mae govannen, Starfox! Would be nice indeed to have Sindarin around, though there are certainly more important courses. But even though I don't want to discourage you, are you sure that you know enough about it? The Tengwar are only the script, not the language itself. They are used for more than just Sindarin, too, like for example Quenya.

Words like "navaer" also beg the question if you would include reconstructed words or even words simply invented by fans (I would strongly advise against the latter at least), or only limit the course to what is actually attested in Tolkien's work.

April 20, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Axelsander

How about having two part courses? So that the first part is only tolken and "true" words. But once you pass all that you can have a disclaimer warning you that if you that the next levels use fan-made words.

Alternatively one could pay lingots for fan-based levels.

December 24, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Deutscherussisch

My thoughts exactly.

October 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Crispie89

This course is available on the "contribute to a course" on the incubater webpage. https://incubator.duolingo.com/apply You will she Sindarin's Shining flag in the drop down menu. Please contribute if you can! <3

February 5, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Iliektrainzzzzz

Orlando Bloom, Viggo Mortensen, and Liv Tyler all speak it.

April 23, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kalexbro

Do you think they could contribute to the website?

April 23, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Iliektrainzzzzz

I dont know...Maybe if someone applies for Peter jackson's next tolkien movie and meets orlando, i dont think so. But they are indirectly contributing by me learning bits and pieces from the movies...

May 3, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Heysoos1

I feel like reconstructed words are gonna be necessary. Otherwise, honestly Sindarin isn't going to get very far. I can read Tengwar script, (use it when I want to be all cryptic. I actually made my own French orthography, but because of all the vowels I had to borrow some from Hebrew and Arabic, lol).

I would try out a Sindarin course, honestly it was the lack of motivation that stopped me, but Duolingo's courses solve that! :D

March 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Iliektrainzzzzz

Elvish is actully a popular language in new zealand.

April 23, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/linnaeas

do you find that surprising?

February 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/wintertriangles

Awesome man, good luck applying for the incubator

April 20, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/caselthor

I would definitely enjoy a course in any Tolkien language.

April 21, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Iliektrainzzzzz

great! because elvish is the basis of all tolkien languages!

April 22, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kkbruv

Hi Starfox, support u

April 22, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BobbieL

I'm sure the Duolingo staff would be happy to let someone develop the course at some point. I just really doubt that they're going to put much effort into setting it up any time soon when they have a lot of significant real world languages that aren't well supported.

Keep in mind that Duolingo's primary mission is to improve communication opportunities in the real world. They want to translate the web and help people learn languages so that everyone can communicate. Tolkein's Elvish doesn't do a lot to bring them to that goal, compared to a huge number of other things they can do.

There's certainly nothing stopping you from digging in and working on materials designed to teach Sindarin NOW, though, while you wait until Duolingo reaches the stage where they have the spare time and attention for something like that. This is a very nice language learning platform, but it's not the only possible option.

April 21, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EssenceOfRandom

They have already developed Klingon and High Valyrian, so I don't see what reason there is to do those and not elvish.

November 3, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

Then you should probably read the rest of the thread as well as this thread: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/24074665

November 3, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/J.S.Clingman

Yes!

December 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kkbruv

Are you promoting Project Elvish or not???

April 23, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndrewWing644

Yeah, but they've already opened the door for artistic conlangs with Klingon/High Valyrian when they could have been supporting real languages like Finnish, Kurdish, or Latvian/Lithuanian for example

April 24, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AaronM676

It doesn't work like that. Its not a zero-sum position. Most of the work on languages like Klingon was done by volunteers. You're implying that if they weren't volunteering on Klingon they would have been working on something you think more valuable.

April 24, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mickwalter

I would TOTALLY learn that. Awesome choice, my friend.

April 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/anika64

This is really cool! I don't know a bit of Sindarin but I will be sure to find people that do!

June 24, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aleifr

Fantastic initiative, but is this still continued?

July 22, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/2017fionak

i don't know any elvish but i really want to learn

September 25, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iaintnoloverboy

because I am almost fluent in Quenya and I could help

November 25, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nasta

best idea ever!!!! i want it so much!!!!

February 20, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/xaxes

Is this idea still alive? I know group of people who could help creating this course.

March 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BipolarAnt

yes, Sindarin is actually a option in the dropdown without having to select other.

March 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/giamma-99

I'm still disposed to make the elvish course

March 4, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jeffrey.jo7

I would definitely take this course if it came up.

March 23, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alexis.Kustka

elvish uses different symbols rather than letters and they work in pairs so two of the same english letters form one elvish letter which would be hard to program onto something like duolingo using the standard keyboard, but i hope you can figure out how to make that part of the program. i hope this works out for you, if this is still going on. this is a pretty good website to get it from only if you want to http://www.jenshansen.com/pages/online-english-to-elvish-engraving-translator

March 24, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Heysoos1

I can think of a lot of problems with making this course, but the writing system is one of the easy things. After all, Hebrew and Arabic only show consonants (most of the time), it's a similar system to Tengwar. Even at that, the most common way to write Sindarin is one letter per sound, (including vowels).

March 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ben996134

You could also just use latin letters...

February 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NathanaelPaul

I support u :). well everyone who loves LOTR supports U. "your burden is great, I can't carry it for you... BUT, I CAN CARRY YOU"

April 22, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

I posted this quite a while ago in the parallel thread requesting a Quenya and I thought it would bear repeating here. I wrote the post with Quenya in mind but it applies equally well (perhaps even better) to Sindarin:


I posted in this thread before that I would consider applying as a contributor after I had studied the language a bit more. But after spending several months diving into Quenya deeper than I have before, I am convinced that a Quenya course for Duolingo would be very difficult and would need to be done with much care. I still think it would be amazing but I am not sure that I trust myself with the burden.

The problem is that Tolkien's languages were made for his own amusement and not for practical use. Not only does this mean that the vocabulary is limited, it also means that we know nothing about discourse in these languages and furthermore because it was Tolkien's private hobby for decades before Quenya and Sindarin were used in the LOTR, there are many different versions of these languages and even the publication of the LOTR did not stop him from tinkering with them. Even the iconic greeting that Frodo uses "Elen sila lumenn' omentielvo" was changed in later editions. The earlier form was "Elen sila lumenn' omentielmo."

Which brings up the point of why it would be so difficult (perhaps not impossible, but extremely tricky) to create a Duolingo course on Quenya. The ending -vo/-mo in the above phrase is a first person plural pronominal ending (specifically "our"). So which ending should be used in the course? The original or the one Tolkien used later? Indeed, the pronouns in Quenya tend to be quite slippery and Tolkien changed his mind about them (and many other things) just about every time he sat down to write something! Mixing and matching from different documents and different periods of Tolkien's life does not accurately represent Quenya, it creates a new language based on Quenya ("Neo-Quenya") which might derive from Tokien's language but is emphatically not the language that Tolkien created.

And the problems only start there. Many aspects of Quenya grammar are fraught with this type of fluctuation in Tolkien's many conceptions of the language. Any website out there claiming that it can teach you to write or speak Quenya is actually teaching you that author's particular amalgamation of the language, a "Neo-Quenya" version created by them and based on Tolkien but definitively not Tolkien.

In my opinion, the problem is even worse for Sindarin. Quenya generally has much better documentation and a much longer history. If you go to the Duolingo Incubator, you will see that you can apply as a Sindarin course contributor. I fear that if such a course were made, though, it would actually (necessarily) be a form of Neo-Sindarin. Indeed, if the course were based on David Salo's Sindarin that is used in the movies, I would have to decry it as something wholly different from Tolkien's Sindarin. For a review of Salo's book on Sindarin, see

https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/lambengolmor/conversations/topics/760

If you want an even more comprehensive explanation of the several points I have made above about why a course in Quenya (and even more so in Sindarin) would be extremely difficult and should only be attempted with the utmost care, consideration, and trepidation, the following article is a must read:

http://www.elvish.org/articles/EASIS.pdf

In short, I think Quenya and Sindarin can be used for composition in interesting ways if the writer is careful and has a deep understanding of the histories of the languages and is able to take that into account in their composition. But I am not convinced that this can be taught effectively through a Duolingo course. The course would end up being overly simplistic to avoid errors or to constrain itself to only the most basic and consistent aspects of grammar (and therefore not of much help to the aspiring elvish student) or it would be a full language course that necessarily deviates from Tolkien's Quenya and instead uses a form of Neo-Quenya that does not necessarily conform to Tolkien's conception of the language.

June 30, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IanSkeirik

everything you said is totally valid, but the answer isn't to give up. its to get the tolkien fan community together and successfully develope a full neo-sindarin/neo-quenya/neo-khazdul/neo-telerin/neo-(insert tolkien language here)

February 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

Well, I actually never said the answer was to give up. I actually still study and use Quenya on occasion. The main point I was trying to make was that, in my opinion, Duolingo is not really the right medium through which to teach those languages.

Take Quenya for example: as you suggest, members of the Tolkien fan community have already created "Neo-Quenya". The problem is that there are actually several different Neo-Quenyas because several different people have taken a crack at the project and have come to different conclusions about different grammar points. Helge Fauskanger's Quenya course, for example, makes several different suggestions on which pronominal endings to use on verbs. Thorsten Renk's Quenya course suggests different pronominal endings which he feels are more/most closely associated with the Quenya used in the LOTR books.

Or, to take another example, Helge Fauskanger suggests using the ending -ëa for present tense A-stem verbs. However, Carl Hostetter has criticized this and said that Fauskanger's deductions about present tense A-stem verbs is too far-reaching as they come from a single example that may have been a short-lived evolution in Tolkien's ongoing invention of the language.

And if I were to work on a Duolingo course, I would take an extreme disagreement with Fauskanger's pension of inventing new words. For example, Hostetter points out in his essay "Elvish as She is Spoke" that in one translation Fauskanger translated "insect" as "celvalle", which is a diminutive of the attested word "celva", which means "animal." So he translated "insect" as "little animal" because there is no attested word for insect in Quenya. In my opinion, this is too far and I would not include such words in my version of Neo-Quenya.

In short, there are already as many Neo-Quenyas as there are students/users of Quenya. So which one should be used for a Duolingo course? Which would should be promoted as implicitly better or more correct by this website? I think that is a difficult decision to make and not a debate the Duolingo staff should enter.

And the above problems only multiply for Tolkien's other languages, which are not as well-attested, not as well-developed, nor as well-studied as Quenya. If any other of Tolkien's languages was made into a Duolingo course, it would necessarily involve a lot of fan-creation and would be pretty far from what Tolkien created and intended. And this is fine on other mediums such as a forum dedicated to Tolkien's languages or someone's personal website or blog about their version of Neo-Sindarin or Neo-Khuzdul, for example. But these should not be singled out and promoted by Duolingo when there are several equally valid versions of Neo-(language) out there.

February 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IanSkeirik

well i mean thats the thing. If someone put there neo (language) it would no longer be a question. it would be the official version. and i don't honestly care to much which it is. I just want the fan community to come together and decide on one.

February 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

It has been many years and the fan community still has not settled on just one version of Quenya. There are still legitimate disagreements about proper use of tenses and pronominal endings, for example. There is no governing body that can resolve these disputes and I don't think there should be. Tolkien changed the language throughout his life and to really study and use the language you have to understand that. It is the unfortunate truth in Tolkien's languages that they changed often so you can not just study "Quenya" and say that you know it. You have to study the history and evolution of Quenya to understand how it changed and what we can understand from that. I hate to be the one to say there are no easy solutions when it comes to studying Tolkien's languages.

February 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IanSkeirik

sigh.... I guess that makes sense.

February 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MusicalTarrasque

Can Christopher Tolkien say what is official and if he does won't most fans be happy?

March 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ausir

Christopher Tolkien or the Tolkien Estate could develop or designate an official version of Neo-Quenya or Neo-Sindarin if they wanted to. But they don't appear to have any desire to do so.

April 1, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HeartOfGoldMars

AGREED! Couldn't have said it better!

February 21, 2017

[deactivated user]

    I would love to add a conlang to my languages! I once went to Hobbiton to apply for a job and took the tour while I was there. I spoke to the tour guide, and I mentioned I wanted to learn the language. He said lots of visitors could; and that one couple who couldn't speak each others language used it to communicate - the guy even proposed in Elvish!

    September 29, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

    Well, there is actually a Quenya verb for to marry: "verya-" which can also have the meaning of "dare" or "join". So proposing to someone in Quenya is plausible.

    As for lots of visitors being able to communicate to each other in Elvish? No. I heard the same tales at Hobbiton and on another LOTR tour when I was in New Zealand a couple years ago but I just held my tongue because I didn't want to get in a nerd-war with these well-meaning tour guides. Is it possible to communicate in Quenya or Sindarin? Yes, but only in the most basic sense. But we don't have words for many of the most common, every-day items and far too few verbs to function adequately for anything more than a really simple conversation. Furthermore, much of the grammar is either unknown or has several different versions from different periods of Tolkien's life because he changed his mind so often.

    So if you mashed up vocabulary from different periods of Tolkien's life and if you made some arbitrary decisions about which grammar to follow and which to ignore and again mixed up different grammars from different periods of Tolkien's life, then sure, you can "speak" a little Quenya (or maybe even a little Sindarin, although even less is known for sure about Sindarin). But could you maintain long conversations about diverse topics or even speak fluently with someone without having the same conversations day after day? No, I really don't think it's possible, as much as it pains me.

    I've studied Quenya and tried my hand at translating some things before. And don't get me wrong, you can write some simple things in Quenya and have fun with the language. But trying to use it to translate anything or use it in daily conversation is really just not possible without a lot of interpolation beyond what Tolkien left us.

    September 29, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/swingbeatnik7

    I really hope this is still in the works. Seems to be plenty of people who are confident in their abilities to work with Sindarin. It's about time.

    December 17, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/swingbeatnik7

    I would love Quenya also but a lot of people are adding energy as to why it shouldn't when there are ways to work around it.

    December 17, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ben996134

    I'd like it!

    January 27, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Deutscherussisch

    Problem is, Sindarin was not developed enough for someone to actually learn it, and also, Tolkien was always changing this and that as he went along. Maybe you could use the latest version of Elvish but even that is not definite enough.

    That being said, I think a Sindarin Duolingo might be cool, with some disclaimers.

    May 10, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/langpedia

    I love the idea of learning languages created for fiction, however I've seen a lot of comments such as being "fluent" in Sindarin or Quenya and I want to pose this question: what is your definition of fluent? Does it mean you can have a long conversation? Does it mean you could give a lecture on sustainable agriscience?

    Another issue that others have pointed out is that Duolingo focuses on expanding communication around the world. Yes, there are a lot of people interested in learning to speak Elvish but what would the future truly hold for it? To be frank, we are a group of people on the internet; I very severely doubt that we will be using Elvish to communicate in our everyday lives, or that it will be a helpful language to learn.

    I cannot see how Sindarin would be a language which will last. Whether people forget things, or simply don't complete the tree, I think there are far more valuable languages to learn and while I don't discourage learning the language itself - it's a personal choice - I do question whether it suits Duolingo.

    Again, I don't wonder whether people should bother learning the language at all. I'm from New Zealand- a few people have used the language to help tourism over the years, and I remember a weather presenter (Tamati Coffey) once delivering an entire weather segment in Elvish to promote one of the films- but in terms of using the language in daily life, I severely doubt that the sentiment will be shared.

    July 25, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ElltheWyverary

    I get what you're saying, but I feel like learning languages doesn't just teach you the language itself, it gives a platform off which to work when learning OTHER languages. In that way, learning even a language that might seem unhelpful could be, in fact, useful. Why do people learn Latin? I personally find that, as my French improves, I'm learning a lot about English and languages in general. Languages are the way people communicate, and any realistic or real language reflects this. Not that we should all give up learning Korean or Spanish or other languages spoken in people's normal lives all over the world to learn only invented languages. Balance. As well, I love Tolkein's work, and learning Sindarin or Quenya would not only be incredibly snazzy, but also give a deeper level of understanding regarding this incredible author and linguist, and his writing.

    April 5, 2019

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kristie719578

    I'm so excited about this!

    September 7, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Daneriba

    I want! How do I get on this train?

    October 27, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FatmaMarta

    I'd love to learn SIndarin (Love Tolkien's Books)

    December 1, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JackyGurn0

    What kind of support are you needing??

    January 10, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/littlecutel

    would love to learn elvish, it sounds so pretty to speak.

    July 13, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bellefire11

    I CAN HELP!!!!! I studied it!!!

    July 31, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/freya903777

    cool. Where did you study it?

    August 1, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RicardoIbarraGT

    I support your proposal. What can I do?

    August 21, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-PugLover-

    YES YES YES!! PLEASE MAKE AN ELVISH COURSE!!!! :DD

    September 7, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mr.BlueWolf

    Resurrect Project Elvish!

    September 16, 2018

    [deactivated user]

      I want to help you out. But I cannot speak Sindarin. How can I help you

      November 7, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mia278763

      Yes! Totally for it! Lets do it!

      November 10, 2018

      [deactivated user]

        I desperately want to see this happen!! My mother used to speak fluent Sindarin but had forgotten most of it. I always loved the beauty of Sindarin, and to learn it would be a dream-come-true.

        January 29, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Maskakota

        I really want to learn Elvish, Sindarin or Quenya. I would love for this to be on Duolingo! Klingon and High Valarian are on here, so why not get some Tolkien up in here!

        February 17, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/william803231

        well when is it going to happen?

        February 23, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IanThomas5555

        I would really like to learn elvish, it would really help with RP

        February 27, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Spacekido.2

        omg learning Elvish would be so cool!

        March 5, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Opasmaus

        YES! do it… :D

        March 27, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Opasmaus

        dooooooo it please!!

        March 27, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NeoNeko77

        This would be wonderful ^_^ And a dream come true!

        May 8, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rachelrogstad24

        Yes! We definitely need Sindarin and/or Quenya as a language on Duolingo! That would be so cool! I fully support that idea, and I am a huge Tolkien fan!

        June 23, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gracieace1

        I would love for Elvish to be on Duolingo!!

        July 9, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gracieace1

        How many people have to vote for this to become a language??

        July 10, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gracieace1

        Cause I will find people that want to learn it and have them vote if need be.

        July 10, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mirimi06

        I would love to learn Sindarin as I read many fanfiction and I would like to create my own, but I know only a little. Just the things that I pick up from the fanfics. I know that it would be hard to create a course that is somewhat authentic because it is a varsatile language that is also created by the fans to be able to speak but duolingo has to option to show more than one translation of a word.

        July 18, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ISpeakAlien

        I support all language requests on Duolingo, even constructed ones. I hope that a toki pona course will also be added eventually.

        toki wile pi toki ali pi lon lipu Duolingo li pona tawa mi. kin la toki pali li pona tawa mi. mi wile e ni: tenpo lili la nasin pi kama sona pi toki pona li kama lon ilo Duolingo.

        August 5, 2019

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sayeediid

        I could help a little

        October 13, 2015

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Shadow_Moonrise

        I don't know any Elvish , but that's pretty cool . As soon as It comes out , I will try learning .

        March 28, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NathanaelPaul

        Are you creating this language on Duolingo?

        April 22, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Fiat-Ferrari

        Unfortunately I would be zero help in creating, but I would love to take a Sindarin or Quenya course!

        April 24, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NathanaelPaul

        that is Okay you just need to give this guy support you don't need to help make it :)

        April 25, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NathanaelPaul

        when are you planning on starting????

        June 29, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iSamuelHoffman

        I agree entirely. I've also been learning the languages of LOTR in other websites. I would love to see those languages here and would even help develop it.

        July 3, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/aspiec

        How can I help?

        July 30, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TheSpeakingEagle

        Can't wait to see it on this amazing website! In the mean time, here's a link for everyone to check out! : http://realelvish.net/

        October 9, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/QueenMaultsby

        I would love to have the opportunity to learn this language!!! I know that after Klingon was started in the Incubator, a lot of my friends who aren't currently on Duolingo have been watching to see if Sindarin would be released. It would be really popular if it was released!

        October 13, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

        See my very long comment above. Or see my top comment here, it's mostly the same but easier to find: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/8438323

        October 13, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SureFireShannon

        I would love to learn Sindarin on duolingo! I have tried to piece information together from different websites, but it was ultimately too difficult to try to do all by myself. Having it in one place would be super helpful!

        December 2, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/valkguy27

        Is this still a thing or should I give up hope?

        January 4, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

        I'm not sure what you mean. Sindarin never got added to the Incubator (https://incubator.duolingo.com/) so it's not actively being developed. This was just someone hoping that the course would be created.

        January 4, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Siah2222

        Yes please!

        March 18, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KityKat96

        I really really really hope they make a Sindarin course! I have been wanting to learn to speak it for sooo long!

        April 6, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-PugLover-

        Same!! :D

        November 7, 2018

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DZB123

        I think it would be great to speak elvish...

        April 26, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jeremiah1101

        It would be great if both elvish languages were made Sindarin and Quenya. I would be happy to learn this language.

        April 26, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mad_Catter

        lets do it

        May 11, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/theikkero

        i would love to learn Sindarin or Quenya.

        May 12, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eard_Stapa

        Well there's nothing stopping you....

        May 12, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ElltheWyverary

        GO STARFOX! I totally wish I could help, but barely know any Sindarin myself. Sorry. Goheno nin!!!

        May 12, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AidanCamac

        I agree

        May 20, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lukyril

        I could help for Quenya but... its kinda hard cause not all word are in there...

        May 27, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Megan22581

        This would be so helpful

        June 8, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/radikian

        As a tolkien fan, this would be really cool to have!

        July 7, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sebastianorion

        We need this.

        July 17, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/roniblack

        Would love to learn Sindarin!

        July 19, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HannaDymava

        It would be fantastic to learn Sindarin here on Duolingo. I am a huge fan of J.R.R. Tolkien and I have started to learn Sindarin a few years ago but I gave it up. Some light everyday duolingo elvish would be exactly what I need.

        August 2, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Nate605330

        What ya need. You could probably just ask Duolingo to start the incubation process. I might be able to give you 50 USD on Kickstarter if you need me to.

        August 6, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EpicVictory12
        December 22, 2017

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/notyoursenpai5

        I would like to help!!!

        June 21, 2018

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/freya903777

        Same. I think that it would be really cool to learn Sindarin, and I would love to learn elvish.

        June 30, 2018
        Learn a language in just 5 minutes a day. For free.