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Adûnaic is the language of the Men of Númenor (a lost island kingdom inspired by Plato's Atlantis) in the epic The Silmarillion by J. R. R. Tolkien. This language, excepting the Elvish languages, is the only language of Tolkien for which he has left us a grammar sketch, as far as published material goes (found in The History of Middle-earth 9: Sauron Defeated).

Adûnaic Grammar

Word roots

The language uses triconsonantal roots (similar to Semitic), but with the difference that each root also has a vowel associated with it which appears in all forms of the word. The same consonant base with a different characteristic vowel is a different root. The characteristic vowel normally appears between the first and the second consonant of the root, but it can be moved elsewhere.

Nouns and Genders

Nouns have four genders: masculine, feminine, common and neuter. Each noun has a normal form, a subjective form (a marked nominative), and an objective form used in compounds. Further case relations are expressed by postpositions. The vocabulary contains many loanwords from Quenya.

Descendants of Adûnaic

Adûnaic has several descendants spoken in Third Age Middle-earth, most notably Westron.

External links

This article is part of a series on the languages and worlds of J. R. R. Tolkien.

Conlangs: Adûnaic * Avarin * Black Speech * Khuzdul * Quenya * Quendian * Sindarin * Westron
Conworld: Middle-earth
Conpeoples: Elves
Terms and techniques coined: Diachronics * Legendarium * Lámatyáve * *