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Moon-letters

Moon-letters when revealed by Elrond on Midsummer's Eve

Moon-letters were special Dwarven runes written in Ithildin that could only be revealed by the Moon at a certain time.[1] They are only mentioned in The Hobbit when Elrond held up Thror's Map to read to Thorin and Company.

History

Moon-letters were a system of writing invented by Dwarves - they were ordinary runes, but written in such a way that they could only be read when the light of the moon shone behind the writing. Some moon-letters could be read by any moonlight, but it was possible to make the writing even more secret. More sophisticated moon-letters could only be read by the same shape of moon, or at the same time of year, as when they were written.

Moon-letters were written with silver pens.[1] The substance Ithildin, made the from the precious metal Mithril, reflected only starlight and moonlight.[2]

Thror's Map

Moon-letters partially visible on Thror's map

An example of these moon-letters would be on the map of the Lonely Mountain and surrounding areas that Gandalf gave to Thorin Oakenshield. The moon letters were the more cunning type mentioned above, and they were written on a midsummer's eve in a crescent moon. They said:

"Stand by the grey stone when the thrush knocks and the setting sun with the last light of Durin's Day will shine upon the key-hole."[1]

Translations

Foreign Language Translated name
Afrikaans Maanletters
Albanian Mun-shkronja
Amharic የጨረቃ-ፊደላት
Arabic القمر حروف
Armenian Լուսնային-տառերը
Azerbaijani Ay məktubları
Basque Ilargi letras
Belarusian Cyrillic Месяц-літары
Bengali মুন অক্ষর
Bosnian Mjesečna slova
Bulgarian Cyrillic Лунни писма
Cambodian សំបុត្រព្រះច័ន្ទ ?
Catalan Lletres de lluna
Chinese 月球 字母
Corsican Lettere di luna
Croatian Mjesec-slova
Czech Měsíční písmena
Danish Månebogstaver
Dutch Maanletters
Esperanto Lunaj literoj
Estonian Kuutähed
Faroese Mánibókstavarnir
Filipino Mga titik ng buwan
Finnish Kuukirjaimilla
French Lettres lunaires
Galician Letras de lúa
Georgian მთვარის ასოები
German Mondbuchstaben
Greek Σελήνης-γράμματα
Gujarati ચંદ્ર અક્ષરો
Hebrew אותיות ירח
Hindi चाँद पत्र
Hungarian Hold-betűk
Icelandic Tunglstafir
Indonesian Huruf-huruf bulan
Irish Gaelic Litreacha na gealaí
Italian Lettere di lunari
Japanese 月文字
Kannada ಚಂದ್ರ ಅಕ್ಷರಗಳು
Kazakh Ай-әріптері (Cyrillic) Ay-äripteri (Latin)
Korean 달 편지 ?
Kurdish Nameyên heyvê (Kurmanji Kurdish)
Kyrgyz Cyrillic Мун-каттар
Laotian ຕົວອັກສອນດວງຈັນ
Latin Lunam-litterae
Latvian Mēness burti
Lithuanian Mėnulio raidės
Luxembourgish Mondbréiwer
Macedonian Cyrillic Месечина буквите
Maltese Ittri tal-Qamar
Marathi चंद्र वर्ण
Mongolian Cyrillic Сар-үсэг
Nepalese चन्द्रमाका-अक्षरहरू
Norwegian Månebokstaver
Persian حروف قمر
Polish Księżycowymi runami
Portuguese Letras da lunares
Punjabi ਚੰਦ ਅੱਖਰ
Romanian Scrisori de lună
Russian Лунные буквы
Scottish Gaelic Litrichean gealach
Serbian Месечева слова (Cyrillic) Mesečeva slova (Latin)
Sinhalese සඳ අකුරු
Slovak Mesiac-listy
Slovenian Luna-črke
Spanish Letras lunares
Swahili Barua za mwezi
Swedish Månbokstäver
Tajik Cyrillic Моҳ ҳарфҳои
Tamil சந்திரன் எழுத்துமூலங்கள்
Telugu మూన్ అక్షరాలు
Thai ดวงจันทร์ตัวอักษร
Turkish Ay-harfler
Ukrainian Cyrillic Місячні літери
Urdu چاند کے خطوط
Vietnamese Chữ mặt trăng
Uzbek Ой-ҳарфлари (Cyrillic) Oy-harflari (Latin)
Welsh Llythyrau lleuad
Yiddish לבנה-אותיות
Yoruba Awọn lẹta oṣupa

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 The Hobbit, Chapter III: "A Short Rest"
  2. The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, Book Two, Chapter IV: "A Journey in the Dark"
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