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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Reading Room: Some more background, Curufin and Eol: Edit Log


Jun 6 2013, 3:45pm

Views: 4174
Some more background, Curufin and Eol

In Reply To
(besides curiousg) about that excerpt...
if "curufin of course knew well of eol's hatred of the noldor, and especially of feanor and his sons," how did he know?
eol was so reclusive, even with his own people. just how would curufin know this?
theories welcome. : )

From the Notes relating to the chapter, some fascinating points: (thanks Doug for the directions!)

"For they* held a constant watch on Nan Elmoth, mistrusting the doings and goings of Eol..." (*'They' are Curufin and Celegorm.)
So there was long-standing knowledge of Eol, and Curufin and Celegorm found him suspicious for a long time. It was through these watches that it became apparent that Aredhel dwelled with Eol, as they espied her walking in the woods at night, and knew well who she was - the distrust may be simply inspired by the difference in Eol's twilight lifestyle and his openly and commonly dealing with the Dwarves, even if we discount the possibly abandoned sketches in which Morgoth had direct influence over Eol.

"An important point not made clear is Curufin and Celegorm's earlier action in the matter of Aredel. She had actually stayed with
them, and made no secret of who she was - indeed they knew her well from of old. Why did they not send word to Gondolin?"

"The answer then to the above question is this: the perils of Dungorthin etc. were universally dreaded by the Eldar, and
not least by the sons of Feanor, to him [read whom] refuge southward into Doriath was utterly closed. It had, of course, been
expressly forbidden by Turgon that Aredel should go that way. Only her wilfulness had done this."

So the Girdle and Thingol's ban, hemming in the brothers, prevents them from sending word to Turgon of the whereabouts of the Lady, even after she leaves them and is 'lost' and then, after many years, is seen again in the woods near Eol's home. In addition, while Aredhel stayed with the SoF, she made her feelings clear:

"But Aredel had evidently told Curufin (and later Celegorm of whom she was most fond) enough of herself, to understand that she had escaped from Gondolin by her own will and was glad to dwell [with] them and be free."

So here they perhaps also had the sense that it would be against the Lady's wishes had they interfered and sent word to Gondolin. "Escaped": interesting word! Her 'flight of the caged bird'?

As to the confrontation with Eol:
Curufin also knew that Eol's wife was of the Noldor, indeed he had long known who she was, and now shrewdly guessed that she was [?seeking] to escape from her husband at last." Thus the meat of the disdainful way Curufin deals with Eol. As far as Curufin's motivations, and how Eol is not, at this time, committing any dark acts:

"Curufin could have slain Eol (as he greatly wished!) and no one beyond the few men with him at his camp (who would
never have betrayed him) would ever have heard of it - or much mourned it. In Elmoth it would simply be learned that Eol had
ridden in pursuit of Aredel and never come back, and there were perils enough upon the road to account for that. But this would
have been in Eldarin law and sentiment murder; Eol came alone, on no errand of mischief at that time, but in distress.
Also [he] had answered Curufin's contempt and insults soberly or indeed with courtesy (whether it were ironic or not). Also and more cogently he was one of the Eldar, and not so far as was known under any shadow of Morgoth - unless that vague one which afflicted many
others of the Sindar (? due to whispers inspired by Morgoth) - jealousy of the Noldor."

So he greatly wished to slay Eol - I wonder, jealousy of his wedding Aredhel, considering her marked like of the SoF? Intriguing idea....
I like the notes on the inside take on that interaction - Eol seen to be behaving with decorum (even ironic) in the face of insult and denial of aid from a Firstborn...and also interesting we see the ban on slaying each other coming into play, even tough Curufin could have acted with relative impunity. And even if direct marring my Morgoth was either abandoned or deeply secret in Eol's story, the open marring of the kindreds through the whispering campaign comes to fruition.

Manwe, when asked a simple "Yes" or "No" question, contemplated, and responded "the middle one."

(This post was edited by Brethil on Jun 6 2013, 3:48pm)

Edit Log:
Post edited by Brethil (Half-elven) on Jun 6 2013, 3:48pm

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