what does the word "mean" mean in the quote "I am Gandalf, and Gandalf means me!". It should have been "is" instead, right?

  • "I am Gandalf, and Gandalf is me!"
  • 1
    When you say Gandalf, you mean him, not someone else.
    – MorganFR
    Nov 30, 2016 at 13:39
  • So here "Gandalf" is a word in the second part, not a name. Nov 30, 2016 at 13:40
  • It is his name, and obviously, it's also a word.
    – MorganFR
    Nov 30, 2016 at 13:41
  • Note the sentence is preceded by: "And you do know my name, though you don't remember that I belong to it."
    – 2540625
    Sep 30, 2019 at 15:16

1 Answer 1


It is an idiomatic usage of mean to give emphasis to what you want to express:

  • [ T ] used to add emphasis to what you are saying:
    • I want you home by midnight. And I mean midnight.

Cambridge Dictionary

  • 1
    Can I say something like this then, "When I say you, I mean You!" will it have sense? Nov 30, 2016 at 13:45
  • Yes, you are underlining the fact that you really mean "you".
    – user5267
    Nov 30, 2016 at 13:47
  • 1
    Tolkien's turn of phrase might also imply that there is only one Gandalf in all of Middle-Earth, and it is he.
    – Andrew
    Nov 30, 2016 at 18:04

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