Learning Language – Elvish

In continuation of my Fellowship posts, I had to touch on another aspect of our geekdom: learning Elvish. Only Abbie could speak it, but the rest of us knew the letters so that we could write notes to each other.

Letter from Abbie
Letter from Abbie

We did this for two reasons:

We’re nerds.

Our English teacher Mrs. Cracraft would read notes out loud to the class if she caught you passing them in class

We wanted this to happen.

It did one fateful day…..unfortunately I can’t remember what year it was. We had Cracraft our freshman and junior years of high school. But I will never forget the look on her face when she grabbed the note from a Fellowship girl’s hand, unfolded it (because we also loved folding our notes in weird ways – pre-texting!!!!), and tried to read it.

Cracraft simply furrowed her eyebrows and exclaimed, “What is this?!”

The Fellowship almost fell out of our seats we were laughing so hard. It was such a wonderful moment.


But the writing wasn’t just limited to passing notes in English class. As you can tell by Abbie’s wonderful artwork that we also just enjoyed writing the letters and looked for any excuse to do so. It’s such a pretty language and it’s a fully developed one, too!

Tolkien was actually a linguist professor first and foremost so he knew how to develop a language and did as he was writing his stories on Middle Earth. But there is more to it: Elvish is actually divided into different dialects depending on the race of elves who spoke it. Most of the Fellowship knew how to write in Sindarin because it was the more common.

On a side note, I also knew how to write in Dwarvish which came in handy with some of the other Fellowship girls who found Elvish a little too complicated.

Unfortunately, I can’t read it now….it’s been almost a decade since I wrote the letters on a regular basis but every time I look at them, I feel love. It’s the love I felt knowing that they took the time to write something beautiful for me as well as the love I bore putting in the same effort for them.

For those of you linguo-philes (like myself) I suggest you look into Tolkien’s languages, it’s so much fun! It also plays to a creative side if you can imagine what beautiful things you can write!

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