The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
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Meaning
Several interpretations are recorded1
Pronunciation
incah'noos

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About this entry:

  • Updated 5 July 2003
  • Updates planned: 2

Incánus

Gandalf’s name in the south of Middle-earth

Gandalf's name 'in the south' (probably meaning no further south than Gondor or the Near Harad), gained during his long travels in Middle-earth in the mid-Third Age.


Notes

1

The meaning of Incánus is a question that Tolkien addressed differently at different times. Its ultimate origin seems to have been the Latin word incánus, meaning 'grey', or 'grey-haired'. Latin being rather inappropriate to Middle-earth, Tolkien reinterpreted it variously as a Westron word meaning 'Greymantle', or as an Elvish name, suggesting both 'north spy' and 'mind ruler' as possible meanings. This last, from in(id) 'mind' and kan- 'ruler', seems to have been his preference, though it is difficult to state this with certainty.

Indexes:

About this entry:

  • Updated 5 July 2003
  • Updates planned: 2

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