Anybody who's read Tolkien or seen the movies has bumped up against those strange, unpronouncable names: Elbereth,
Cirith Ungol, Khazad-Dum, Minas Morgul. Even more confusing, many of the character names sound alike (Faramir/Boromir,
Eowyn/Eomer, Theoden/Theodred). What do they actually mean? Conversely, there are many LOTR phenomena for which
words don't exist.
Originally, the Dictionary had its roots in a TORC slang expression, "go to Osgiliath", meaning to detour, digress,
or otherwise meander away from one's original destination, as Frodo and Sam did in "The Two Towers". (If you start
driving to the gym, but end up at Burger King, you've been to Osgiliath.) From those humble beginnings, "Going
to Osgiliath" blossomed into a long-running thread on TORC, with many posters contributing totally bogus, crackpot definitions
for Tolkien words.
The original links to the Dictionary at the TORC reading room are now obsolete, so here's a smaller selection of
my contributions. If you're looking for an accurate, helpful definition of a particular Tolkien term, you've come
to the wrong place.