Those who understand Elvish, please help.
I'm trying to come up with a last name for my Silvan Lore-master from Mirkwood. I would like it to mean something along the lines of "evening doe" or "deer under the stars/moon".
I've tried looking up various Sindarin dictionaries online, but I don't know how to combine words/phrases. I guess "aras" is supposed to mean deer. I have her last name as "Vanaras" currently, but I honestly don't know where I got the "van" from.
Any help please?
I wanted to help, earlier, but didn't have the time in the real world ...
to take a "real" look at the proposition. I had read the OP, and replies, and "something bugged me", but I couldn't devote the time to explore the issue. If now is too late, then I am sorry, if only because I truly had wanted to help ...
To the issue,
I'm not happy with the constructs provided above: if they are not, indeed, incorrect, they nevertheless do not demonstrate "preferred" Sindarin usage.
From the narratives we see that genitive/ablative/whatever phrases are (almost) never used to form (personal) names; when nouns are compounded into a name-construction, the modifier (almost) always precedes the object. This first case invalidates Arasaduial/Arasenaduial/Arasnuinithil/Aras o ithil; in the second case, 'Arasithil' simply is not 'moon-deer' but, rather, 'deer-moon'; connotation of this construction is therefore doubly problematic (the/a 'month of a/the deer' would be rendered 'Arathron', swapping-out the element 'ithil').
So we're left with this base construction: Ithilaras = 'moon + deer', in the sense of '(a/the) deer of (the) moon'; genderless; suitable to be the species-name of, say, a breed of albino deer, or to be used as a personal epithet, or even as a male's given name; even as a male's given name, however, its "generic sterility" is perhaps not desired.
I'll mention, but not recommend, Ithilaraseth, which does literally feminize this construction, but the suffix is agentive (as if 'moon-deering' were an activity): this must be grammatically rejected because 'aras' is a noun, rather than a verb.
Let's look at ...
Ithilarathiel or Ithilarathwen: 'moon + deer + (young) woman', in the sense of either 'maiden who is (like) a moon-deer', or 'daughter of the moon-deer' (both names would have both connotations); Ithilarathiel might rather be rendered Ithilarassel, but I do not think so (but I can't remember what "rule" is telling me this; '-iel' and '-sel' are "exactly the same suffix", from exactly the same root).
At this point, I'll make the personal remark that I find the entire Ithilaras line of construction to be a little problematic: what the heck is (a/the) moon-deer in the specified context of THE Moon? Ithil does not mean, 'moon', or 'a moon' but 'The (one-and-only) Moon'. All of these names (except Ithilaraseth) would be acceptible as epithets, but maybe not for given names; phonetically, I find them cumbersome and inelegant.
Can we make something a little more ear-pleasing? Hmmmmm ... how about:
Silarathiel or Silarathwen: '(the) white-shine (of the moon) + deer + (young) woman', in the sense of '(the) girl who inspires one to think of (a) deer shining in (the) moonlight'; the connotation of 'sil' = 'white-shine' with moonlight, especially, is attested-to in LotR by 'Narsil', the name of Elendil's sword.
However it is that one deals with the 'moon' element, also consider using the suffix 'hiril' = '(noble) Lady': Ithilarathiril or Silarathiril.
In my phonetically-aesthetic opinion:
"Womanly", choose Ithilarathwen or Silarathiril;
"Girly", choose Silarathiel;
"Pompous", choose Ithilarathiril;
To me, Silarathiel and Silarathiril are the most "ear-pleasing", and Silarathiril possesses an almost-rhyming-almost-alliteration that, to me, lends an additional air of "poetic majesty"; but it's a little pompous, nevertheless.
Better late than never, I hope ...
To the extent that I have earned any thanks ...
... I find myself a little overwhelmed by some of the "praise", and I feel compelled to strongly-assert the following: none of the work is mine.
There exists a substantial wealth of academic/para-academic study on the fiction of J.R.R. Tolkien, and there has been much activity inspired by the various manifestations of his "Elvish Language": the linguistics branch of those esoteric studies formerly known collectively as philology has, since the time of Tolkien's creations, been formally refined into the discipline known as Comparative Linguistics; a number of academically-trained and -certified Comparative Linguists have descended upon Tolkien's Elvish with what I would style as, "reverent rapacity".
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Salo is likely the best-known of these, for his work connected with the most-recent movies.
I would rather defer to the work of http://tolkiengateway.net/wiki/Helge_Fauskanger (who, himself, often cites Salo, if only for being a pioneer).
There is, of course, the ongoing Hiswelokë project http://www.jrrvf.com/hisweloke/sinda.../sindarin.html.
An extensive resource library has come into existence, from the work of many contributors.
Haha! What do I use?
The Parviphith Edhellen (Sindarin), cross-refenced with the Quettaparma Quenyallo (Quenya); I will flee to the Hiswelokë resources when I need to identify the primary source.