LIONS

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Lomelindo
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LIONS

Post by Lomelindo »

I was perusing the Quenya word lists and found that the word for lion is RA (plural RAVI).
The way I see it, for there to be a word for it in Quenya I think Elves would have had to encounter them at some point.

Also RA is the Egyptian Sun god and there is lion symbolism with Sekhmet the lion headed goddess aka the “Eye of Ra” which was basically a death ray because everything threatening the Pharaoh would be destroyed by her gaze.

So where are the lions???! Maybe in the East or South?
“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost."
 
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Re: LIONS

Post by Lomelindo »

https://ancientegyptonline.co.uk/maahes/
So Sekhmet was the daughter of Ra and her son Maahes is another lion headed god. Ma means lion in Egyptian. Maahes also reminds me of the forgotten Vala, Makar.
“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost."
 
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Lomelindo
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Re: LIONS

Post by Lomelindo »

From the same link:
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F3BEC934-DC4B-4625-B6F8-85F82E2F1666.jpeg
“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost."
 
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Mildir
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Re: LIONS

Post by Mildir »

Lomelindo wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 12:52 pm I was perusing the Quenya word lists and found that the word for lion is RA (plural RAVI).
The way I see it, for there to be a word for it in Quenya I think Elves would have had to encounter them at some point.
Lions might have been for the Quendi approximately what dragons are for us: creatures present in their minds, whose shape derived from actual specimens of lion seen by Elven explorers who had ventured South and had returned.
According to Tolkien, the love of the Quendi for Arda was great, it's plausible that at least some of them had wished to see it all.
Our myths may be misguided, but they steer however shakily towards the true harbour, while materialistic 'progress' leads only to a yawning abyss and the Iron Crown of the power of evil. (J.R.R. Tolkien)
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Re: LIONS

Post by Meneldur Olvarion »

Lomelindo wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 12:52 pm[...] The way I see it, for there to be a word for it in Quenya I think Elves would have had to encounter them at some point.
I agree. Inventing things that have no relation to the natural world of Earth seems to be a recent phenomenon.
So where are the lions???! Maybe in the East or South?
My intuition is, East. If you look at this old post of mine [link], you'll see that Cuiviénen was probably near the foothills of the Altai mountains, on the shores of the West Siberian glacial lake. There is a species of lion called the Asiatic lion. Their natural range went as far East as central India in the early 19th century, and was likely more extensive than that in truly ancient days when there weren't as many hominids around. This, or a related species, is what the early Quendi probably encountered.

They may have encountered Siberian Tigers also, although with Tigers not hunting in packs and being very close ambush predators, they may not have called them anything but 'monsters' (whatever the Primitive Quendian was for that word).
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Re: LIONS

Post by Lomelindo »

Interesting about placement at the Altai. However I can’t seem to view the post as it says I don’t have permission.
“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost."
 
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Meneldur Olvarion
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Re: LIONS

Post by Meneldur Olvarion »

I'll ask Luthien to give you access. The permission system we had was labyrinthine and confusing, so she recently redid it.
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Re: LIONS

Post by Meneldur Olvarion »

You may also notice that in JRRT''s poem "Cat", he specifically references both 'East' and lions:

Cat

The fat cat on the mat
may seem to dream
of nice mice that suffice
for him, or cream;
but he free, maybe,
walks in thought
unbowed, proud, where loud
roared and fought
his kin, lean and slim,
or deep in den
in the East feasted on beasts
and tender men.

The giant lion with iron
claw in paw,
and huge ruthless tooth
in gory jaw;
the pard, dark-starred,
fleet upon feet,
that oft soft from aloft
leaps on his meat
where woods loom in gloom--
far now they be,
fierce and free,
and tamed is he;
but fat cat on the mat
kept as a pet,
he does not forget.

[link]
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Re: LIONS

Post by Lomelindo »

Oh yes! I completely forgot about that poem. :)
“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost."
 
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Lúthien
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Re: LIONS

Post by Lúthien »

Paul Strack's Eldamo website is currently by far the best resource for Tolkienian languages. The amount of work he has put in there is amazing.

If you search for "Lion" there you don't just find Ra for lion:

Q. †rá¹ n. “lion”
Q. rauro n. “lion”
ᴹQ. rá n. “lion”
ᴹQ. ráva³ n. “lion” see rá
ᴹQ. rú n. “lion” see rá
N. rhaw³ n. “lion”
ᴱQ. rau n. “lion”
ᴱQ. ravenne n. “she-lion”
G. rau n. “lion”
✶rāw n. “lion”
ᴹ✶rāu n. “lion”
ON. rō n. “lion”

(go here, enter "lion" in the search box; select "gloss only" in the second dropdown list, and "noun" in the last one)

I would think that the word is based on how a lion's roar sounds to people who first come across one. There are lots of animals named after the sound they make, see here for instance (the "Dik-Dik", the "Hoopoe", the "Chiffchaff", the "Ai", the "Wow-wow", and more). Maybe the Egyptian Ra was also named by association with the fierceness of a lion and it's roar?
A! Elin velui, dîn dolog, aduial lúthad!
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Re: LIONS

Post by Lomelindo »

Yes. There is no evidence that Ra was inspired by the sound of a lion's roar, but it comes from the root "r" which means "Sun, Day".

I am also reminded of Aslan from CS Lewis's Narnia representing the Christ principle.
“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost."
 
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Lúthien
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Re: LIONS

Post by Lúthien »

That reminds me of this map of all Indo-European languages I came some time ago. And that’s just the Indo-European language group, there are several more.

Image
A! Elin velui, dîn dolog, aduial lúthad!
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Re: LIONS

Post by Lomelindo »

Oh wow, this is a cool map!
“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost."
 
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Lomelindo
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Re: LIONS

Post by Lomelindo »

Here's a reference to Idril fighting Maeglin like a TIGRESS.
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“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost."
 
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Meneldur Olvarion
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Re: LIONS

Post by Meneldur Olvarion »

Hey, that's cool. I had forgotten that particular passage.
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