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Thread: Eowyn and Arwen

  1. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Quote Originally Posted by auroradawn View Post
    By the way, @yellow, Arwen was invented for Lord of the Rings. It's also a Welsh name, though, and I'm guessing that's no coincidence, because Tolkien was a philologist as well as a perfection freak, and he modeled one of his Elvish languages on Welsh. I know a mom with a 6-month-old Arwyn, and she also only realized Arwen is a well-known Tolkien character after her daughter was born.
    Eowyn was not exactly invented for Lord of the Rings. In the books, the language of the Rohirrim (Eowyn's people) is Old English, which Tolkien knew well and explained by saying that in his works he "translated" the language of Rohan into Old English. So the names of Eowyn and her brother Eomer are probably legit OE names.

    Please excuse the ramblings of this language-and-Tolkien-lover...couldn't resist. Best wishes!
    I knew (or perhaps assumed) the Welsh connection, but had heard conflicting reports on whether Tolkien had invented Arwen or not. It sounds like at best he did so without realizing it was already established, which in my book would qualify as "non-invented" from a namer's perspective.

  2. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Northwest USA
    What Tolkien probably did with Arwen was choose a name that had meaning in both Elvish and Welsh--that is, not invent the name, but choose a name that worked in both his invented language and in the "later" language which supposedly retains the roots of the "earlier" Elvish. Tolkien loved words with multiple meanings and derivations.
    "He telleth the number of the stars; He calleth them all by their names."
    Psalm 147:4

    Still dreaming:
    Tobias Rory Benjamin ~ Crispin Isaiah ~ Ransom Horatio ~ Lucius Olórin ~ James Deliverance
    Una Marguerite/Oona Sylvestra ~ Jessamyn Agnes ~ Branwen Evangeline ~ Alice Emmanuelle ~ Christiana Linnet

  3. #20
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    La La Land
    Both are very usable. I have Eowyn on my long list!

  4. #22
    I think they are both beautiful names, and I don't think it would be a problem to use them. LOTR is awesome and classic, and there is no shame in looking to it for inspiration.
    Current Favorites (in no particular order)

    Girls: Susannah, Mahalia, Cassia, Tosca, Petra, Yael, Jerusha, Jewel, Rose, Dove, Kate, and Eve
    Boys: Gideon, Gabriel, Rafael, Dominic, Benedict, Abraham, Desmond, Theodore, Tobias, Jonathan, Mordecai, and Sebastian
    Guilty Pleasures: Aurelia, Cosima, Eowyn, Neytiri, Rukia / Remy, Gryffin, Sam, Eddard, and Judah

  5. #24
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    I think Arwen is quite usable. Eowyn, on the other hand, seems too out there.

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