A Few Special Words

We tagged a few other categories of words as we went along.  Remembering that while the Concordance has all 1534 uncommon words entered, I have only had chance to thoroughly examine and make special notes on the 300 which were the most interesting to me and seemed the most likely to be “archaic” or a “gem” or to fit the other ideas I was curious about.  In fact, if you search on the tag “brief”, you will find those words for which I only made a plain concordance entry.

Meanwhile, those special other tags.  There are not many of them, so I concatenated them all onto one graphic for us:

Special Words

The few blue words are tagged “British” – from Scottish, Irish, and Cumbrian.  The green graph shows us the words from outside the most frequent hundred thousand words in the Project Gutenberg corpus, tagged 100K.   I also had a few thoroughly subjective tags.  The red graph shows us words I tagged “funny” (and a few which the OED calls “jocular”), and I’ve been told that my sense of humour is flawed.  For example, I think the word “quoits” sounds funny and that “burglar” is funny for being anti-heroic.  The few delightful plum words are my personal favorites with the “gem” tag (yes, the lovely Cumbrian word “carrock” is also one of my gems). They are the words which I discovered had multiple meanings and nuanced connotations which all contribute to Tolkien’s elegant storycraft.


Note that this is not the wood of an oak, but a woods of oak trees.  this concept has its own entry in OED, but it is always two words with a space or one single word, never hyphenated.  I am giving this spelling the JRRT tag.

  • 07.023 in an oak-wood
  • 08.042 a butterfly that loves the tops of oak-woods,

“oak, n.” OED Online, Oxford University Press, June 2017, http://www.oed.com/view/Entry/129461. Accessed 19 September 2017.


Note that in almost all instances “Lake-town” is the proper name of the town, well and good.  But once, in 14.002, it is a word in itself a kind of town, the uncapitalized “lake-town Esgaroth”.  “Lake-town” is not attested in OED.

  • 09.019 From Lake-town the barrels were brought up the Forest River.
  • 09.020 and floated back to Lake-town,
  • 09.064 down the stream to Lake-town.
  • 10.009 into the little bay of Lake-town.
  • 10.009 in Lake-town.
  • 10.017 I suggest Lake-town,’
  • 10.038 coming down the river to Lake-town.
  • 10.040 in Lake-town,
  • 10.045 three large boats left Lake-town,
  • 11.019 and tools of many sorts from Lake-town,
  • 12.085 to take to Lake-town all right,
  • 12.087 from Lake-town
  • 14.002 The men of the lake-town Esgaroth
  • 14.031 In the Lake-town we have always elected masters
  • 18.034 to the Master of Lake-town;
  • 19.043 and Lake-town was refounded