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On 25 Feb 2012, at 08:07, JŲrg Rhiemeier wrote:

>> By the same criteria you can't revive Cornish either, because you can never know how authentic a form modelled on Welsh or Breton, or on general morphological principles would be in the light of what was not recorded.
> 
> Actually, there are people who insist that revived Cornish was not Cornish.

I'm fairly sure that (based on my long experience with the Cornish community) that this statement is not really accurate -- certainly it is not up to date. Glanville Price criticized Unified Cornish many decades ago, but these days that sort of criticism is really not in evidence.

>> Tolkien's respect for the Beowulf poet or Cynewulf or Wulfila, or the great impact the acquaintance with their
>> work had on him, didn't stop him from composing in Neo-Gothic and Neo-Anglo-Saxon!
> 
> Right.

Or, perhaps, "wrong", as my response yesterday shows. The analogy between creation of new texts on Old English or Gothic and the invention of grammatical paradigms in Neo-Quenya is not strong.

>>> To me, a Neo-Quenya Alice would not be authentic.
>> 
>> Neither are Tolkien's 'Old English' and 'Gothic' poems, then!
> 
> What's inauthentic in a Neo-Quenya translation of _Alice_?

It is Neo-Quenya which is not authentic, in my view. While I am happy to publish Alice in VolapŁk and Neo and Esperanto and Lingua Franca Nova, and Khlžjha, I would not so support a translation into Neo-Quenya.

> Sure, it is a translation and not the original, but this is not the Qur'an.  Sure, it is Neo-Quenya and not Tolkien's original Quenya, but what does that mean?

It means, to me, a translation into "pretend Elvish". 

> Isn't a translation of a major work of literature into a conlang an expression of *respect* towards that conlang?

Yes, and I am preparing editions of a number of translations into conlangs and hope to do more in future. But in my own view, the Neo-Quenya project is not an expression of *respect* towards Quenya. I understand and accept that others may hold a different view. 

In a month, I will publish An Hobad -- the Hobbit in Irish. That's how I like to show respect to Tolkien and his úuvre. 

> By translating such a difficult text into Neo-Quenya you show that this language (which is not the same as Tolkien's Quenya, but the basic structure is 100% Quenya) is capable of supporting such elaborate speech art.

Actually, like Klingon and Na'vi, I doubt that Neo-Quenya has been developed sufficiently to handle Alice.

Michael Everson * http://www.evertype.com/