Liberty News Forum
Political News Forum - Let your opinions be heard on current news and politics. Not for wimps!
Political Opinion Page - Recent Posts - LNF Forums LNF in the Age of Empowerment!
Christian Forum - Religion Forum - Entertainment - Sports Forum
Military - A1 News Page - Computers Tech - Financial News - Bunker - Presidential Tracking Poll
The House - Off the Wall News - Page 2 - Rasmussen Reports Polls - Chat Room
Liberty News ForumLNF Forums HereMilitary Forum, History, Guns, Survival topics › History Philological Style or the Myth of the 'True Language'
Page Index Toggle Pages: 1 Send TopicPrint
Normal Topic History Philological Style or the Myth of the 'True Language' (Read 384 times)
Frank1
LNF Majority Leader
***
Offline


Posts: 6,533
Joined: May 18th, 2005
Gender: Male
History Philological Style or the Myth of the 'True Language'
Dec 15th, 2015 at 9:36pm
Print Post  
So according to Shippey, Tolkien's strongest belief, next to his Catholicism, was his belief that at one time language corresponded absolutely with the things it named; that at one time language was 'isomorphic with reality' as Shippey says.

"And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field"

We see this belief put forward strongly in the enigmatic character of Tom Bombadil.  When the tree 'Old Willow Man' is attacking the Hobbit's, Tom says "I know the song for him," which song stops the Old Tree in its tracks.  When Tom names something it sticks, and his songs are songs of power.

We can see something of this too in the language of the High Elves.  Though perhaps not as 'primordial' as Tom, the High Elves are still incomparably ancient and wise in comparison to Hobbit's; and when the Hobbit's first meet some elves as they journey through the Shire, though Frodo and companions cannot understand the language of the elves literally, just hearing it awakes in them images and longings.  There is some power within the words themselves.

So, what does this have to do with history?  Well, standard history considers documents and archaeological remains.

History from a philological perspective takes words themselves as evidence.

Tolkien would say, for instance that the evidence for the existence of elves is words like 'aelfe' and 'ylfe' and the tales and legends containing such words.  The existence of the words themselves is a type of proof, especially if one takes the theory that the farther back in time we go the closer languages were to being 'isomorphic with reality.'

To us skeptical and cynical post-moderns this does not seem like much to go on...we are generally people that want to have something we can hold in our hand before we will assent to 'belief' in a thing.

But as for Tolkien, the immense strength of his work is built to a large extent completely around the idea of languages being more or less isomorphic with reality, and the work produced certainly does not speak bad of the theory.
  


To say homo sapiens, is to say Homo religiosus; there is no man without God. ~Frithjof Schuon
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Page Index Toggle Pages: 1
Send TopicPrint
 
Liberty News ForumLNF Forums HereMilitary Forum, History, Guns, Survival topics › History Philological Style or the Myth of the 'True Language'
LNF Home - Political Opinion Page
LNF Forums

Christian Forum - Religion Forum - Sports Forum - Entertainment - House
Military, History - Cooking and Crafts - Creative Writing
Off the Wall News - Science Forum - Tech Gadgets - Financial News - Humor
Bunker - Page 2 - Page 3 - Page 4 - Chat Room





Drudge Report - News Max - Rush Limbaugh - FrontpageMag
Advertise on the LNF - Twitter LNF - LNF Archive - LNF News
LNF Blog
News and Political Links
Political Blogs
Add your website or blog
Political Columnists
Political Humor
News forum posting, privacy policy and member rules