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Summons of the Rohirrim
Old English – Tolkien

   
Abídað cuman uncúðe!
Stay, strangers unknown!
   ⸱    ⸱
Hwæt sindon gé, láðe oððe léofe,
Who are ye, friends or foes,
   
þe þus seldlice gewerede
that have come thus strangely clad
      
rídan cwómon tó þisse burge gatum?
riding to the gates of this town?
          ⸱
Nó hér inn gán móton ne wǽdla ne wæpned mon,
None may here enter in, neither beggarman nor warrior,
     :
nefne wé his naman witen.
if we know not his name.
       ⸱
Nú gé feorran-cumene gecýðað ús on ofste:
Now, ye comers from afar, declare to us in haste:
   
hú hátton gé?
what are ye called?
        
hwæt sindon éower ǽrende tó Þéoden úrum hláforde?
What is your errand to Théoden our lord?

In the drafts for The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien put this warning in Old English in the mouth of the wardens of Meduseld when they see Aragorn, Legolas, Gimli and Aragorn coming. It was not included in the final text.

The text is found in The Treason of Isengard, p. 442-443, with a translation Christopher Tolkien in note at p. 449. We edited the spelling by adding acute accents on long vowels and substituting þ and ð to th.

The text is transcribed in tengwar or “letters of Fëanor”. Tolkien created two different adaptations of the general use of the Third Age to Old English, presented in Sauron Defeated pp. 318-327. We especially attempted here to emulate the mode of the so-called “Text I”. We made use of Måns Björkman Berg’s typeface Tengwar Eldamar.  Open this mode in Glaemscribe

Tolkien, John Ronald Reuel. The Treason of Isengard: The History of The Lord of the Rings, part two. Edited by Christopher Tolkien. London: HarperCollins, 2002. 504 p. (The History of Middle-earth; VII). ISBN 0-261-10220-6.

The works of John Ronald Reuel and Christopher Tolkien are under the copyright of their authors and/or rights holders, including their publishers and the Tolkien Estate.
Quotations from other authors, editors and translators mentioned in the bibliography are under the copyright of their publishers, except for those whose copyright term has ended.
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