In addition to the active participle (-(i)la) and the passive participle (-ina), Tolkien discussed a third suffix -nwa, which he variously labeled a “passive suffix”, a “perfective adjective” or a “perfective participle”. The perfective participle. This was formed with -nwa. It originally was not passive or active but denoted the
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The Quenya passive participle resembles the English past participle: matina “eaten”. When a passive participle is used as an adjective (i matina massa “the eaten bread”), the modified noun functions like the object of the verbal action (“the eaten bread” is thing that was eaten). The basic suffix for passive
Note: I skipped P71 because it is just small bridge chapter introducing participles. The Quenya active participle resembles the English present participle: matila “eating”. When an active participle is used as an adjective (i matila atan “the eating man”), the modified noun functions like the subject of the verbal action
Tolkien often distinguished verb conjugations (for the various verb tenses: aorist, present, past, perfect, future) from what he called “verb inflections”. These inflections are added to the tense stem, and came in three types: The subject suffixes: -n(ye), -l(ye), -s etc. The object suffixes: -s, -t. Agreement for number: plural
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The Quenya future tense refers to events occurring in the future: i nér matuva, matuvan “the man will eat, I will eat”. The English future tense uses a helping verb “will”, but the Quenya future tense has its own conjugation, with the suffix -uva. Origins of the Future Tense: Tolkien
In the Quenya Verbal System (QVS) of the late 1940s, Tolkien described a “long perfect” that developed along the same lines as the Quenya pluperfect (past perfect): A weak “pluperfect” was made in Quenya, by adding to the perfect participle the past-suffix -nḗ. So karnelyane “I was having made =
The perfect tense in Quenya indicates an action that has been completed before the present time. In English, the perfect tense is usually expressed with an auxiliary verb “has” or “have”, as in (past) “ate” vs. (perfect) “has eaten” from the verb “to eat”. In Quenya, the perfect tense has
The Quenya past tense is, like in most languages, used to refer to events occurring in the past: i nér mante, manten “the man ate, I ate”. Of all the Quenya tenses, the past is the most complex in its formation. Origins of the Past Tense: The Quenya past tense