The Languages of Tolkien's Middle-earth is a reference and explanatory book written by Ruth S. Noel, published currently by the Houghton Mifflin Company (Boston). It serves as a lexical and grammatical handbook for enthusiasts of Tolkien's invented languages and scripts, and includes also the narrative of Tolkien as a linguist.

As of 1980, however, the sections of the book pertaining to Elvish are outdated and in many places inaccurate, specifically in the area of learning Quenya and of comparisons between Quenya and Sindarin.[1]


Table of contents

  • Part I: Language in Tolkien's Middle-earth
    • Tolkien the Linguist
    • Westron and the Lines of the Kings
    • The Language of Hobbits
    • The Language of the Rohirrim
    • The Languages of Rhovannion - (In this chapter, words and names such as Arkenstone, Olorin, and Scatha are translated via their roots in Old English, Old Norse, Old High German, or even Slavonic.)
    • Quotations Translated
    • Runes and Letters
  • Part II: The Elvish Languages
    • The Elven Tongues and the Power of Language
    • Using Elvish
    • English-to-Elvish Glossary
  • Part III: The Tolkien Dictionary: Fourteen Tolkien Languages
    • Pronunciation
    • Codes - this is a legend for the following chapter, which is a glossary
    • The Tolkien Dictionary


  • In the Table of Contents, chapter 5 of Part I is spelled "The Languages of Rhovannion". Rhovanion is the correct spelling of the place.
  • In chapter 5, "The Languages of Rhovannion", the entry for the word Dwarrowdelf (which is Moria) is spelled Dwerrowdelf.
  • Also in chapter 5, the term Variag is one of the entries. Variags are the people of the land of Khand, and Khand is not a region of Rhovanion.


The book was written in 1974, at which time its full title was The Languages of Middle-earth. The Mirage Press publication of this book had the same title.

Translations around the world

Foreign Language Translated name
Afrikaans Die tale van Tolkien se Middel-aarde
Albanian Gjuhët e Tokës së Mesme të Tolkienit
Azerbaijani Tolkien'in Orta Dünya dilləri
Catalan Les Llengües de la Terra Mitjana de Tolkien
Croatian Jezici u Tolkienovoj Međuzemlje
Danish De sprog, Tolkiens Middle-Earth
Dutch De talen van Tolkiens Midden-aarde
Estonian Tolkieni Keskmaa keeled
French Les langues de la Terre du milieu de Tolkien
Galician As linguas da Terra Media de Tolkien
German Die Sprachen von Tolkiens Mittelerde
Greek Οι Γλώσσες της Μέσης Γης του Τόλκιν
Hebrew שפות של כדור הארץ התיכון של טולקין
Italian I linguaggi della Terra di Mezzo di Tolkien
Lithuanian Tolkino Vidurinėsžemės kalbos
Luxembourgish D'Sproochen vun der Tolkiener Mëtt-Äerd
Macedonian Cyrillic Јазиците на средниот земја на Толкин
Maltese Il-lingwi tal-Tolkien Nofsani-art
Norwegian Den Språkene ved Tolkiens Midgard
Portuguese As línguas da Terra média de Tolkien
Romanian Limbile pământului de mijloc al lui Tolkien
Spanish Los lenguajes de la Tierra media de Tolkien
Swedish Den Språken i Tolkiens Midgård
Turkish Tolkien'in Orta Dünyasının Dilleri



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