Ent in latin

Hey everyone, I am looking for the best way to say Ent (tree people from LOtR for anyone not familiar)
I would also like to know if there is a place to look for fantasy concepts like this for Latin in general (elves, goblins, unicorns, etc...)

Thanks
 

Godmy

A Monkey
When it comes to Ent, I haven't checked yet if the Latin community has been using anything for it, but the easiest thing for the Latin morphology and overall appearance and similarity of the word would be to convert it to a third declension and have Ēns, entis (genitive case).

The problem could be, that this word might have existed in some hypothetical proto-latin (as ents, entis) and it would mean the participle "being" (not as a noun, but as in "being good"). Then, on the other hand, perhaps Tolkien could have been inspired by something like the German der Baum (a tree) which, very hypothetically, could be traced to a related root in the Proto-IndoEuropean that spawned the verb "be" in English, but I'm not a PIE expert, so perhaps I am being deluded (but Tolkien lived hundred years ago, not a PIE expert either, while a philologist). And then, with some imagination, if you imagine "der Baum" to have been something like "a being" (although probably not) and an Ent a giant tree... you can see where I'm going :p

For an Elf as the elves in Tolkien, usually the community has been using alfus, alfī...
 
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Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Hi,

There won't usually be any authority on such words in Latin.

Off the top of my head I can think of two ways to go for "ent":

1) Take the word as is and just stick a Latin ending on it: entus, enti.

2) Given that "ent" was an Old English word meaning "giant", you might possibly call it a giant in Latin: gigas, gigantis. This has drawbacks, though. While the word "ent" had gone out of use in English and thus was able to be resuscitated with a new, more specific meaning, this isn't the case with the Latin gigas, which may thus feel too generic in this context.

Someone might also come up with an original coinage.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
the easiest thing for the Latin morphology and overall appearance and similarity of the word would be to convert it to a third declension and have Ēns, entis (genitive case).
Second-declension seems more instinctive to me. Ens, entis also has the drawback of being identical to the medieval word meaning "a being".
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
I don't know, it seems somehow barbaric
It does, a bit, but that's how most words borrowed into Latin and just Latinized with an ending tend to feel to me.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
In my experience, first and second declensions are more productive when it comes to Latinizing borrowings. I mean even back in the day in medieval Latin and earlier.
 

Godmy

A Monkey
Well, it's true there is "alfus", right? Well, maybe it is just that entus may sound a bit "worse" (I know, so subjective :p) and Tolkien was all about "let's make the names and languages connected with nature as beautiful sounding as possible", but as I say, I will not fight it...
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Well, I agree entus doesn't sound particularly pretty.

I guess one could also choose to take a more descriptive approach and say gigas arboreus or something like that.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Or homo arboreus...
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
But, personally, I think I like retaining the "giant" idea.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
By the way:
The problem could be, that this word might have existed in some hypothetical proto-latin (as ēnts, entis) and it would mean the participle "being" (not as a noun, but as in "being good").
Isn't it generally believed that, although ens, entis was coined later, the original participle would have begun with an s, as in praesens? Some even believe (as mentioned in the OLD) that sons, meaning "guilty" in classical Latin, was originally that participle (the idea being "this being the man").
 
Thank you guys so much, I think I will go with Entus and use gigas arboreaus as a descriptor. I want something that my students will recognize without me having to translate.
 

Godmy

A Monkey
By the way:

Isn't it generally believed that, although ens, entis was coined later, the original participle would have begun with an s, as in praesens? Some even believe (as mentioned in the OLD) that sons, meaning "guilty" in classical Latin, was originally that participle (the idea being "this being the man").
Maybe, but it would have to be dropped in pot-ēns... but you are right prolly.

Btw. if "gigēns, gigentis" was too much for somebody, I thought of a neologism such as "arborāx, arborācis" that just sounds like a badass tree ("arbor"), although I'd like it to be masculine ideally, which could be strange given the root and ending... (but then, on the other hand, arbor too has a dominantly masculine ending (albeit with short "o" in genitive etc.) with a feminine gender ;p Maybe it would be fitting the shepherd is masculine, its 'children' feminine)
 
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