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Tolkien's Middle-earth:

Lesson Plans for Secondary School Educators

Unit Four: One Ring to Rule Them All


Sources of the Elven Tongues

Sindarin and Welsh Compared

O Elbereth! Gilthoniel!

O Star-Queen! Star-Kindler!

(Sindarin, The Lord of the Rings, page 191)

Ai na vedui Dúnadan!

O it is at last the Man of the West!

(Sindarin, The Lord of the Rings, page 204)

Naur dan i ngaurhoth!

Fire take the werewolves!

(Sindarin, The Lord of the Rings, page 291)

* * *

Nerth hen, ei gyngor parad.

The strength of the old is their ready counsel.

(Welsh proverb)

Tyfid maban; ni thyf a gadachan.

The child will grow; his diaper will not.

(Welsh proverb)

Unwaith yn ddyn, dwywiaith yn blentyn.

One time a man, two times a child.

(Welsh proverb)

Quenya and Finnish Compared

Elen síla lumenn' omentielvo.

A star shines on the hour of our meeting.

(Quenya, The Lord of the Rings, page 79)

Ai! laurië lantar lassi súrinen, yéni únótimë ve rámar aldaron!

Ah! like gold fall the leaves in the wind, long years numberless as the wings of trees!

(Quenya, The Lord of the Rings, page 368)

* * *

Kolmas Runo

Vaka vanha Väinämöinen
elelevi aikojansa
noilla Väinölän ahoilla,
Kalevalan kankahilla.
Laulelevi virsiänsä,
laulelevi, taitelevi.

Poem Three (excerpt)

Wainamoinen, ancient minstrel,
Passed his years in full contentment,
On the meadows of Wainola,
On the plains of Kalevala,
Singing ever wondrous legends,
Songs of ancient wit and wisdom.

(from the Kalevala, the Finnish national epic, compiled by Elias Lönnrot)

Poem Twelve from the Kalevala: "Kahdestoista Runo" (excerpt)

Then the singer, Lemminkainen,
Ancient hero, Kaukomieli,
Quick began his incantations,
Straightway sang the songs of witchcraft,
From his fur-robe darts the lightning,
Flames outshooting from his eyeballs,
From the magic of his singing
From his wonderful enchantment.

Sang the very best of singers
To the very worst of minstrels,
Filled their mouths with dust and ashes,
Piled the rocks upon their shoulders,
Stilled the best of Lapland witches,
Stilled the sorcerers and wizards.

Then he banished all their heroes,
Banished all their proudest minstrels,
This one hither, that one thither,
To the lowlands poor in verdure,
To the unproductive uplands,
To the oceans wanting whiting,
To the waterfalls of Rutya,
To the whirlpool hot and flaming,
To the waters decked with sea-foam,
Into fires and boiling waters,
Into everlasting torment.

(adapted from the John Martin Crawford’s public domain translation of the Kalevala)

Unit Four Content

Comments for Teachers
Preliminary Quiz
Key Terms
Discussion Topics
Suggested Activities

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