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Thread: Tolkien General Discussion II

  1. #3401
    atthias's Avatar Citizen
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    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Quote Originally Posted by AntonisTheGreek View Post
    Maybe he means that the days of Gondor as a kingdom on its own will end,and that from now on Gondor will continue to exist as the capital of the Reunited Kingdom,which contains both Gondor and Arnor,hence the word "greater".
    thanks for the answer +rep
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  2. #3402

    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    @lolIsuck
    Quote Originally Posted by lolIsuck View Post
    Completely unrelated to this, it seems as if Tolkien kept forgetting (or ignoring) that Elladan and Elrohir were with Aragorn in the Return of the King, on several occasions he singles out Legolas as the exception of something because he's not affected by something as he is an elf (Path of the Dead for example) where one would assume that the Twins would be mentioned as well, certainly considering their higher ancestry when compared to Legolas. Also, a quote of Aragorn in the Houses of Healing is quite odd if one considers that they're with him:

    Surely Elrond sons would then still hold great power, presumably more than generation 30 something Aragorn, with the added bonus that they're Elves and thus infinitely superior.
    Two matters here.
    The first is that at the end of the chapter that you quote, Aragorn indeed do call for Elladan and Elrohir:
    And Aragorn arose and went out, and he sent for the sons of Elrond, and together they laboured far into the night.
    - RotK; The Houses of Healing
    What may be assumed Aragorn earlier meant is that neither of the three are on Elrond's level, but that's just to be expected


    ~~~

    Secondly, Elrond and his children are technically not Elves, but half-Elves [Peredhil] bestowed with the fate of Elves [the 'immortality']. Indeed, even the Valar were not sure about the question whether the Peredhil were Elves or Men, but settled to let them chose which kindred's fate they prefered:
    [Mandos about Eärendil:] 'Shall mortal Man step living upon the undying lands, and yet live?'
    But Ulmo said: 'For this he was born into the world. And say unto me: whether is he Eärendil Tuor's son of the line of Hador, or the son of Idril, Turgon's daughter, of the Elven-house of Finwë?'
    And Mandos answered: 'Equally the Noldor, who went wilfully into exile, may not return hither.'
    But when all was spoken, Manwë gave judgement, and he said: 'In this matter the power of doom is given to me. The peril that he ventured for love of the Two Kindreds shall not fall upon Eärendil, nor shall it fall upon Elwing his wife, who entered into peril for love of him; but they shall not walk again ever among Elves or Men in the Outer Lands. And this is my decree concerning them: to Eärendil and to Elwing, and to their sons, shall be given leave each to choose freely to which kindred their fates shall be joined, and under which kindred they shall be judged.'
    ...
    In Middle-earth dwelt also Gil-galad the High King, and with him was Elrond Half-elven, who chose, as was granted to him, to be numbered among the Eldar; but Elros his brother chose to abide with Men.
    - Silmarillion; Of the Voyage of Eärendil and the War of Wrath

    Now Elros and Elrond his brother were descended from the Three Houses of the Edain, but in part also both from the Eldar and the Maiar; for Idril of Gondolin and Lúthien daughter of Melian were their fore-mothers. The Valar indeed may not withdraw the gift of death, which comes to Men from Ilúvatar, but in the matter of the Half-elven Ilúvatar gave to them the judgement; and they judged that to the sons of Eärendil should be given choice of their own destiny. And Elrond chose to remain with the Firstborn, and to him the life of the Firstborn was granted.
    - Silmarillion; Akallabeth

    The sons of Eärendil were Elros and Elrond, the Peredhil or Half-elven.
    - Appendix A; I

    Elrond was received into the company and life-span of the Eldar, and became esquire and banner-bearer of Ereinion Gil-galad.
    - HoME 12; The Shibboleth of Feanor; The names of Finwe's descendants; 5
    Point being, Elrond like his parents Eärendil and Elwing had the fate of Elves and therefore often were accounted to the Elves, but when strict in definition were not Elves themselves.
    And if you wonder (as one might), no, there exist no mathematical definition when you're a Half-Elf and when you're not, nor is it clear why Elrond's children were allowed to chose but not Elros' children.
    Back to Elrond, when we meet him in The Hobbit he is described:
    The master of the house was an elf-friend - one of those people whose fathers came into the strange stories before the beginning of History, the wars of the evil goblins and the elves and the first men in the North.
    In those days of our tale there were still some people who had both elves and heroes of the North for ancestors, and Elrond the master of the house was their chief.
    He was as noble and as fair in face as an elf-lord, as strong as a warrior, as wise as a wizard, as venerable as a king of dwarves, and as kind as summer.
    - The Hobbit; A Short Rest
    Had he been an Elf proper, he would not been called an "elf-friend" and it would been odd to use the compairison "as an elf-lord", but he is one who is both Elf and Man.
    This proved a fitting choice, as in Letter 257 from 1967 Tolkien comments:
    From The Hobbit are also derived the matter of the Dwarves, Durin their prime ancestor, and Moria; and Elrond. The passage in Ch. iii relating him to the Half-elven of the mythology was a fortunate accident, due to the difficulty of constantly inventing good names for new characters. I gave him the name Elrond casually, but as this came from the mythology (Elros and Elrond the two sons of Eärendel) I made him half-elven. Only in The Lord was he identified with the son of Eärendel, and so the greatgrandson of Lúthien and Beren, a great power and a Ringholder.
    JRR stuck to this distinction throughout LotR indeed, and did not count Elrond's sons as Elves, as Legolas often is referred to as "the Elf" or as representing the Elves even when Elrond's sons are present, hehe.
    To compair the description in The Hobbit, Elrond when he is described in FotR is granted to both kindred:
    The face of Elrond was ageless, neither old nor young, though in it was written the memory of many things both glad and sorrowful. His hair was dark as the shadows of twilight, and upon it was set a circlet of silver; his eyes were grey as a clear evening, and in them was a light like the light of stars. Venerable he seemed as a king crowned with many winters, and yet hale as a tried warrior in the fulness of his strength. He was the Lord of Rivendell and mighty among both Elves and Men.
    Last edited by Ngugi; June 25, 2017 at 01:16 PM.

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  3. #3403
    atthias's Avatar Citizen
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    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Quote Originally Posted by Ngugi View Post
    @lolIsuck
    Two matters here.
    The first is that at the end of the chapter that you quote, Aragorn indeed do call for Elladan and Elrohir:
    What may be assumed Aragorn earlier meant is that neither of the three are on Elrond's level, but that's just to be expected


    ~~~

    Secondly, Elrond and his children are technically not Elves, but half-Elves [Peredhil] bestowed with the fate of Elves [the 'immortality']. Indeed, even the Valar were not sure about the question whether the Peredhil were Elves or Men, but settled to let them chose which kindred's fate they prefered:
    Point being, Elrond like his parents Eärendil and Elwing had the fate of Elves and therefore often were accounted to the Elves, but when strict in definition were not Elves themselves.
    And if you wonder (as one might), no, there exist no mathematical definition when you're a Half-Elf and when you're not, nor is it clear why Elrond's children were allowed to chose but not Elros' children.
    Back to Elrond, when we meet him in The Hobbit he is described:

    Had he been an Elf proper, he would not been called an "elf-friend" and it would been odd to use the compairison "as an elf-lord", but he is one who is both Elf and Man.
    This proved a fitting choice, as in Letter 257 from 1967 Tolkien comments:

    JRR stuck to this distinction throughout LotR indeed, and did not count Elrond's sons as Elves, as Legolas often is referred to as "the Elf" or as representing the Elves even when Elrond's sons are present, hehe.
    To compair the description in The Hobbit, Elrond when he is described in FotR is granted to both kindred:
    as for the part that I make bold Ngugi here is an interesting speculation
    http://www.glyphweb.com/arda/h/halfelven.html
    look at the last paragraph of note 1
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  4. #3404
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    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Thanks Ngugi. So Dwarves should probably reproduce more than Elves though eh? But with being mortal, losing regions, migrating, etc. would maybe put them back at the level of Elves whom have more social stability in later periods? It has been a long while since I read of this stuff if I ever did.

    Also wasn't there something about female Dwarves not always marrying for various reasons, and males sometimes carrying more about other things? I don't know where I got this stuff from, may have been in the early Third Age only though. Sounds to me that with all this stuff to consider, and more, than even if Dwarves had twice as many offspring as Elves their populations wouldn't be much larger due to all the instability.
    Last edited by alreadyded; June 28, 2017 at 01:11 PM.

  5. #3405

    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    It's in the appendices. The Dwarfs marry for love, and so if a female is marrying an another guy, the Dwarf who love her will never marry.

  6. #3406

    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    As Deathshade says

    Dís was the daughter of Thráin II. She is the only dwarf-woman named in these histories. It was said by Gimli that there are few dwarf-women, probably no more than a third of the whole people. They seldom walk abroad except at great need.
    They are in voice and appearance, and in garb if they must go on a journey, so like to the dwarf-men that the eyes and ears of other peoples cannot tell them apart. This has given rise to the foolish opinion among Men that there are no dwarf-women, and that the Dwarves 'grow out of stone'.
    It is because of the fewness of women among them that the kind of the Dwarves increases slowly, and is in peril when they have no secure dwellings. For Dwarves take only one wife or husband each in their lives, and are jealous, as in all matters of their rights. The number of dwarf-men that marry is actually less than one-third. For not all the women take husbands: some desire none; some desire one that they cannot get, and so will have no other.
    As for the men, very many also do not desire marriage, being engrossed in their crafts.
    - Appendix A; Durin's Folk
    I may provide some arguments about the matter, as I find the topic entertaining - mostly because I've seen so many ambitious, pessimistic and inadequate theories around - but it will be in a few days time first.
    Last edited by Ngugi; June 28, 2017 at 04:08 PM.

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  7. #3407
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    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Geez and I thought religious people had it bad, getting laid as a Dwarf was no easy task. With all that spare time and energy for other things it is no wonder they make so many things so well.

    So one or more of the Dwarf fathers were actually women?

  8. #3408
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    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    So once it was known that the one ring was in the shire I remember correctly the nazghul went after it from Mina's Morgul. I'm assuming they didn't have to stop to rest and eat how long did it take them to get over there?

  9. #3409
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    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Well, their horses were still mortal and thus required food and rest and they had no idea what a hobbit was or where the Shire was. They initially went to the Gladden fields/marches area as that's where the hobbits were originally from, Smeagol was from there of course and he found the Ring there, but they found that there were no hobbits left anymore in that area. They then went to Isengard where Saruman pretended not to know anything about the Shire, which was revealed to be a lie when they questioned Grima later. He also told them the location of the Shire and only then they set off towards the Shire. They had some trouble with the Rangers at the Sarn ford but eventually managed to enter the Shire and find that Frodo had just left. Somehow they did manage to leave the lands of Rohan slightly after or at the same time as Gandalf yet still be the first to reach the Shire. This is odd as Gandalf at this point has Shadowfax.

  10. #3410
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    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Quote Originally Posted by lolIsuck View Post
    Well, their horses were still mortal and thus required food and rest and they had no idea what a hobbit was or where the Shire was. They initially went to the Gladden fields/marches area as that's where the hobbits were originally from, Smeagol was from there of course and he found the Ring there, but they found that there were no hobbits left anymore in that area. They then went to Isengard where Saruman pretended not to know anything about the Shire, which was revealed to be a lie when they questioned Grima later. He also told them the location of the Shire and only then they set off towards the Shire. They had some trouble with the Rangers at the Sarn ford but eventually managed to enter the Shire and find that Frodo had just left. Somehow they did manage to leave the lands of Rohan slightly after or at the same time as Gandalf yet still be the first to reach the Shire. This is odd as Gandalf at this point has Shadowfax.
    yeah some stuff just does not add up even timing wise

  11. #3411
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    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    I think Tolkien wrote all that long after he wrote the books though, sort of an attempt to make it make sense. Personally the Nazgul not just taking the Ring on Weathertop bothered me far more that I never really thought about the Nazgul's trip to the Shire. They were pretty much neutered for the rest of the story to me because of that who silly thing that is not explained at all.

  12. #3412
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    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Quote Originally Posted by alreadyded View Post
    I think Tolkien wrote all that long after he wrote the books though, sort of an attempt to make it make sense. Personally the Nazgul not just taking the Ring on Weathertop bothered me far more that I never really thought about the Nazgul's trip to the Shire. They were pretty much neutered for the rest of the story to me because of that who silly thing that is not explained at all.
    it honestly makes them kind of useless. First you can't locate it then will you do you can't get it and then in between that you have your so-called Ally lying to you and can't even figure it out

  13. #3413

    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Quote Originally Posted by Incredible Bulk View Post
    yeah some stuff just does not add up even timing wise
    In the book it does. JRR was a master of keeping track on LotR dates in general (especially clear when the fellowship breaks up in multiple timelines). For about all gaps of LotR chronology, check RotK, Appendix B
    Concerning the problematic task the Nazgûl had, as well as for some early approximate dates, best is to read Unfinished Tales, chapter The Hunt For The Ring for yourself, but in summary...

    About the 1st July they crossed the Anduin and went north searching, since about no one knew about the Shire (the Rohirrim for example still belived Hobbits were a fairy tale) or at least its location, as noted already, and certainly no one knew where it was in Mordor (for example Sauron's agents had failed to lure the Dwarves on info about where it was, as described by Gloin in FotR).
    When you do not know what area in the world your target is in, and you can't find someone who can tell you, there's not much of a point to frown upon the efficiency by which you reach it. They're Nazgûl, not GPSgûl ^^

    In September the Nazgûl went by Isengard, where Saruman messed with them (which should not be held against them, if one take 2 seconds to recall he is a mighty Maiar whom's foremost power lies in his ability to use his Voice to persuade others).
    Grima Wormtongue or, depending on draft, the "squint-eyed southerner" (later enconutered in Bree, in FotR) they catched straight after, and from him they learned where the Shire was located at last.

    The Black Riders crossed the Isen on the 18th, fought off Rangers at Sarn Ford at the 22nd and they entered the Shire on 23d of September. Quite the speedy ride if that's what hoped for, some 500-600 miles in merely five days.
    As a note, Gandalf tamed Shadowfax in Rohan the day after, on the 24th.


    Quote Originally Posted by alreadyded View Post
    They were pretty much neutered for the rest of the story to me because of that who silly thing that is not explained at all.
    In the book itself, not much nope, hehe, but it was implied and referred to in drafts and comments. Better summorized: http://tolkien.slimy.com/faq/History.html#Weathertop
    Last edited by Ngugi; July 31, 2017 at 06:02 PM.

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  14. #3414

    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Quote Originally Posted by Ngugi View Post
    About the 1st July they crossed the Anduin and went north searching, since about no one knew about the Shire (the Rohirrim for example still belived Hobbits were a fairy tale) or at least its location, as noted already, and certainly no one knew where it was in Mordor (for example Sauron's agents had failed to lure the Dwarves on info about where it was, as described by Gloin in FotR).
    When you do not know what area in the world your target is in, and you can't find someone who can tell you, there's not much of a point to frown upon the efficiency by which you reach it. They're Nazgûl, not GPSgûl ^^
    Probably because the Dunedain and the Elves made anyone disappear who could've told them about the location of the Shire.
    You see, Sauron was actually the good guy wo just wanted open borders, free access to information etc...

  15. #3415

    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Eruminati confirmed

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  16. #3416
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    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    They were meant to fail from the start like an episode of The Nine Stooges or some 80's TV show villain with his goons who just can't catch a break. Then Tolkien in his infinite creativity took one of those jokes and put it on a new steed to make it a scary joke, which gets headshotted before it gets close enough for anyone to even see it or know what it was ("WTF is that!?!" / "I don't know but I randomly shot over there and killed it apparently." ...how embarrassing). So they pretty much just screech ALL the time, never take the time to look at a map, and don't like getting their feet wet (pedicures are expensive yo), which makes them no different than any woman really. If I wanted nine of those I would be a Mormon. What was Sauron thinking... just hire mercenaries next time. Or better yet, don't be the 'bad guy' in a story with a happy ending... ya dum bass.
    Last edited by alreadyded; August 01, 2017 at 02:27 PM.

  17. #3417

    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Quote Originally Posted by Ngugi View Post
    And if you wonder (as one might), no, there exist no mathematical definition when you're a Half-Elf and when you're not, nor is it clear why Elrond's children were allowed to chose but not Elros' children.
    This is because mortality is a gift from Eru Illuvatar. Once Elros chose this gift it could not be taken from either him nor his descendants. Men indeed were not supposed to fear death, they do so because of Morgoth's corruption of Arda. It is not the ability to choose immortality that was the gift to the Peredhil, but the ability to leave the circles of the world and go on to the fate Eru has in mind for them.
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  18. #3418

    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    A rational deduction; any specific texture in mind where JRR puts it plain?
    A question that arises to me is that it seems not completly impossible for mortals to chose the fate of immortality, in the singular (and despite it being a singular) case of Tuor.
    In those days Tuor felt old age creep upon him, and ever a longing for the deeps of the Sea grew stronger in his heart. Therefore he built a great ship, and he named it Eärrámë, which is Sea-Wing; and with Idril Celebrindal he set sail into the sunset and the West, and came no more into any tale or song. But in after days it was sung that Tuor alone of mortal Men was numbered among the elder race, and was joined with the Noldor, whom he loved; and his fate is sundered from the fate of Men.
    - Silmarillion; Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin

    Túor weds Idril the daughter of Turgon King of Gondolin; and 'it is supposed' (not stated) that he as an unique exception receives the Elvish limited 'immortality': an exception either way.
    ... Immortality and Mortality being the special gifts of God to the Eruhini (in whose conception and creation the Valar had no part at all) it must be assumed that no alteration of their fundamental kind could be effected by the Valar even in one case: the cases of Lúthien (and Túor) and the position of their descendants was a direct act of God.
    - Letter 153
    It may be deemed a legend merely of course, but Tolkien do not say either, so in case it is true, it rejects the notion it was not an alternative to Eru to allow a mortal to change fate; putting us back at square one (a.k.a "We don't know" ^^).

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  19. #3419
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    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Some of these legends are a bit silly, like the one where Ungoliant devoured herself. I don't think you are supposed to know what really happened though being the point. It is a simple story telling trick to quickly add more depth to your tale, let the reader do the thinking because any answer you give them will fall short of their own. Same with music, most artists are unwilling to say what their song means to them, they want people to figure out what it means and come up with something that appeals best to them.

    I probably assumed the Tour thing was true though, the Valar would know and they could tell the Elves in Aman, and in the 2nd Age Aman was still a part of Arda (and Glorfindel apparently is the same guy as the 1st Age so he could know). The Ungoliant thing on the other hand has no substance to it, so I consider them differently I suppose. I never thought on the Tuor thing until now though.

    That we are here thinking and discussing it now shows just how potent a story telling mechanism it is.
    Last edited by alreadyded; August 02, 2017 at 04:45 PM.

  20. #3420

    Default Re: Tolkien General Discussion II

    Death is the gift of Eru Illuvatar.

    More appropriately death is only part of the picture, as Elves can die. However if they choose not to be reincarnated in a body they still cannot pass beyond the circles of the world. They are bound by the music of the Ainur while Men are not.

    http://tolkiengateway.net/wiki/Gift_of_Men

    The Gift of Men is death—the inheritance of Ilúvatar's Younger Children, which allows them to go beyond the confines of Arda, this world. Though the phrase commonly refers to this type of mortality, death is actually only part of the broader Gift given to Men: it is one with their ability to operate beyond the Music of the Ainur, which "is as fate to all things else". With this Gift, Men were to fulfill the world down to the finest detail.[1]It was said among the Elves that after they died, the fëar of Men were gathered in the Halls of Mandos, and then departed from the World for a destination unknown even to the Valar. Whereas all other beings in Arda, including the Valar themselves, were bound to the World and its fate, the Gift freed Men from this destiny, allowing them to shape their own lives as they wished. For this reason, the Elves, who must live as long as Arda exists and become burdened with its sorrows, often envy the Gift given to Men, and it is said that even the Valar shall do so as well.
    But like all other aspects of life in Arda, the Gift of Men became darkened by Morgoth's shadow.[2] Men came to view death with great dread, and it became a Doom to them rather than a Gift.[3]Ancient lore kept in memory by the Wise among Men held that Morgoth had indeed brought the Doom of mortality upon them by inducing all Men to turn from Ilúvatar and worship him instead.[4]
    Despite no one figuring out how to mod the campaign maps I've mostly moved on to the Warscape Games.
    Populist, not "Conservative"
    http://www.anth.ucsb.edu/projects/human/evpsychfaq.html

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