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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Reading Room:
Return of the King Part II - the unofficial read through - Book VI onward

Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 13 2017, 9:24pm

Post #1 of 174 (5071 views)
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Return of the King Part II - the unofficial read through - Book VI onward Can't Post

The Tower of Cirith Ungol


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 13 2017, 10:32pm

Post #2 of 174 (4838 views)
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Sam's wanderings around Cirith Ungol [In reply to] Can't Post

I found the path and tunnel traveling quite confusing and just gave up trying to form a mental image of direction etc. Sam once again puts on the Ring and is able to hear the fighting taking place in the tower. I do wonder why Sauron cannot detect its use this close to his location,


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 13 2017, 11:44pm

Post #3 of 174 (4825 views)
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Some illustrations [In reply to] Can't Post

https://i.stack.imgur.com/IIpjW.jpg

https://i.stack.imgur.com/VmNlQ.jpg

http://tolkiengateway.net/...(and_manuscript).jpg

https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/...hS189SKD5PWYPG98Fntl


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 13 2017, 11:49pm)


squire
Half-elven


Aug 14 2017, 11:54am

Post #4 of 174 (4796 views)
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Do you like Fonstad's ideas? [In reply to] Can't Post

The uncredited links are all to her Atlas of Middle-earth (except for the manuscript sketch by Tolkien of the Cirith Ungol pass seen from the Ithilien side).

You said you found the written descriptions of the Tower and its environs confusing to follow. She has, as far as I know, produced the most comprehensive set of schematics of the Tower. Do her illustrations and diagrams work for you? Or do they raise more questions about whether Tolkien himself was inventing a plausible or fantastical military structure?



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


= Forum has no new posts. Forum needs no new posts.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 14 2017, 2:08pm

Post #5 of 174 (4789 views)
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I have her book and will have to pull it out - some of the illustrations are helpful but [In reply to] Can't Post

the entire area within Shelobs tunnel to the paths and back down and around was confusing to read. But, those are just details.

Looking at the Lair's East End illustration shows the complexity.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 14 2017, 2:10pm)


FarFromHome
Valinor


Aug 14 2017, 4:27pm

Post #6 of 174 (4771 views)
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Maybe confusing is what it's meant to feel like... [In reply to] Can't Post

It's interesting to see the plans and maps at this point, when we're analysing the story, but I think as readers we are meant to feel as lost and confused as Sam does. Too much information takes away from the atmosphere, maybe, rather than adding to it.

As for Sam putting the Ring on, the implication seems to be that Sauron can sense it but he can't get a visual because Sam is still on the far side of the pass and is out of line of sight of the Eye. He takes the Ring off as he goes over the top of the Pass, apparently sensing that he's now in danger of being seen. The impression here and in other places is that the Sauron's (or the Nazgul's) sense of the Ring is quite non-specific and hard for them to pin down. Without visual confirmation (which they never manage to get) they don't even seem to be able to tell whether or not it was a false alarm.

They went in, and Sam shut the door.
But even as he did so, he heard suddenly,
deep and unstilled,
the sigh and murmur of the Sea upon the shores of Middle-earth.
From the unpublished Epilogue to the Lord of the Rings



Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 14 2017, 5:06pm

Post #7 of 174 (4759 views)
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Good points, Tolkien certainly succeeded in the dark confusion felt. [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 14 2017, 5:55pm

Post #8 of 174 (4754 views)
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As Sam discovers, within Mordor the ring changes - becomes stronger and [In reply to] Can't Post

hence very dangerous to use. He is presented visions of what he could achieve but his common Hobbit sense saves him - "He'd spot me pretty quick, if I were to put the Ring on now, in Mordor."


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


Aug 14 2017, 6:21pm

Post #9 of 174 (4763 views)
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But the fit passed. [In reply to] Can't Post

A long 2006 essay by Judith Klinger, which was the subject of a little discussion here (mostly for other reasons), suggests, among many other things, that the description is purposefully ambiguous. As I noted in that discussion, Klinger was trying in part to answer these questions:

- Why do Barbara Strachey and Karen Fonstad differ so much in their drawings of Shelob's Lair?

- Why does Tolkien's own sketch of Shelob's Lair confuse east and west?

- What exactly is the chronology between the Cross-roads and the escape from Cirith Ungol?

- Why does Frodo madly rush toward the pass after escaping the tunnel?

There are four lights.

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Discuss Tolkien's life and works in the Reading Room!
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Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 15 2017, 2:26pm

Post #10 of 174 (4722 views)
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Tolkien certainly succeeded in creating the lost, confusing path [In reply to] Can't Post

Even to get into the tower was a challenge.

Sam runs into what comes across as an invisible force field projected by the Watchers. Only with the phial do they relent. But forcing his way in triggers an alarm bell. Fortunately, most of the garrison is dead or dying. The orcs suspected some "great elven warrior" was about the area. At first, they see him as such....even if pint sized.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 16 2017, 2:00pm

Post #11 of 174 (4656 views)
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Sam is driven forward, despite fear, to rescue his master Frodo from the horrible fate [In reply to] Can't Post

that awaits him. He shows a remarkable resistance to the Ring - for now. The orc melee and slaughter shows how volatile any "army" of orcs could be and how without a strong Nazgul hand to control them they were unreliable. I wonder what an individual orc "owned" and what kind of "orcish" economy there was. Did they use coin of some kind? Was everything simply provided to them - as rough and foul as it often was? They fight over Frodo's possessions, especially the mithril shirt. Shagrat at least sticks to his duty of bringing it to the Eye.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 16 2017, 2:01pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 16 2017, 3:00pm

Post #12 of 174 (4658 views)
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We also get a small glimpse of how Galadriel may have brought down Dol Guldur [In reply to] Can't Post

Sam, holding the Phial says "Gilthoniel, A Elbereth! then Frodo says "Aiya elenion ancalima"......there was crack, the keystone of the arch crashed.....and the wall above fell into ruin.

Now, imagine the power of Galadriel which amplifies such effects.

**Without jumping ahead, do we know if the Phial was ever returned to Galadriel at the end?

"Upon Frodo's departure from Middle-earth, the light from the phial faded as it reached the shores of Eldamar.[7]"
http://tolkiengateway.net/wiki/Phial_of_Galadriel


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 16 2017, 3:06pm)


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Aug 16 2017, 10:32pm

Post #13 of 174 (4617 views)
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Communist Orcs? [In reply to] Can't Post

I can imagine that Orcs, when they were on their own and not under Sauron's (or Saruman's) command, might have had an occasional use for coin. They probably had some dealings with evil Men and Dwarves and some tribes might have developed crude economies of their own. It's a subject that Tolkien never really addressed.

"Who I am is where I stand. Where I stand is where I fall.” -- The Doctor


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


Aug 16 2017, 11:10pm

Post #14 of 174 (4607 views)
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Not sure about that Tolkien Gateway quote. [In reply to] Can't Post

The light faded from Sam's point of view on a grey evening as the ship passed out of sight. I don't recall that we're told what it looks like to Frodo. Surely it takes some weeks to sail to Eldamar.

There are four lights.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
Discuss Tolkien's life and works in the Reading Room!
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


squire
Half-elven


Aug 16 2017, 11:23pm

Post #15 of 174 (4605 views)
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Tolkien Gateway is prone to embellishment [In reply to] Can't Post

My observation is that they tend to apply standard Fantasy conventions to Tolkien's world, even if Tolkien's actual text does not support such extensions or additions.

The errors are usually minor or marginal, as in this case. I agree; I had the same reaction. The story says Frodo's light faded out of sight from land as the ship sailed into the dusk, not that the light actually faded in power or luminosity because it was nearing Elvenhome (or Valinor, which is not the same place; Frodo, of course, went to Elvenhome, the island offshore from Valinor). The metaphorical effect is the same - the light of the phial was lost to Middle-earth.



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


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CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 17 2017, 2:07am

Post #16 of 174 (4584 views)
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A gift is a gift? [In reply to] Can't Post

I guess I just don't see Galadriel wanting/expecting the Phial back, nor Frodo feeling any need to return it. As a gift it binds them together, and Galadriel as a Noldo is capable of making other magical things even without her Ring--Feanor and the others needed no Rings of Power to make wonderful things.

It will be interesting to hear what others think.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 17 2017, 2:21am

Post #17 of 174 (4579 views)
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That is a tough one [In reply to] Can't Post

'In this phial,' she said, 'is caught the light of Eärendil's star, set amid the waters of my fountain.'

I don't think she could capture that light again as her proximity to it is now too far.

Yes, she gave this most precious gift to help in the most important mission. I don't think she needs it back...a gift is a gift...but we learn in the end we find out the phial does return with them.

"The words that came to Frodo`s mouth explain the light so very well " Aiya Eärendil Elenion Ancalima" meaning : Praised (or welcome) Ray-of-Light (of ) Western-star (so) Exceedingly bright. That is if you translate the original Anglo-saxon name Earendel which means Ray-of-Light.

If using the Elvish name Eärendil it means Ocean or Sea lover and thus it will be "Greetings Eärendil Sparkling-star of Great Light"

(Would that be...Greetings Sea Lover Sparkling-star...")

http://www.annalsofarda.dk/...Galadriels-phial.htm


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 17 2017, 2:29am)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 17 2017, 2:50pm

Post #18 of 174 (4528 views)
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The Land of Shadow [In reply to] Can't Post

I really miss the beautiful landscapes painted by Tolkien's words in the FOTR. The blasted lands are so depressing (as intended)

I had forgotten how close their escape from the tower was with the alarm system, the Nazgul and from somewhere other orcs and mounted (Nazgul?)

Not sure where these forces came from as the fighting in the tower left everyone essentially dead.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 18 2017, 5:34pm

Post #19 of 174 (4361 views)
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I am trying to think of real world influences on Tolkien for Mordor [In reply to] Can't Post

I am thinking that quite near by to him were some mining areas in Wales that had a suitably blasted, rocky look.


https://static1.squarespace.com/...c+for+delve-1-25.jpg

http://www.jarrelook.co.uk/...size/Dinorwic-66.jpg

http://www.penmorfa.com/...zig%20zag%20path.jpg

http://www.wolverhamptonart.org.uk/whats-on/making-mordor/
The Black Country


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 18 2017, 5:36pm)


InTheChair
Lorien

Aug 19 2017, 6:56pm

Post #20 of 174 (4246 views)
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Stuff [In reply to] Can't Post

Well... ... ...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ijEqz8s57EA&t=17m58s

I suppose the principle is the same


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Aug 19 2017, 7:27pm

Post #21 of 174 (4241 views)
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Well, that happened! [In reply to] Can't Post

I am suddenly reminded of the Discworld II video game (Mortality Bytes!) for the ol' Playstation. No Orcs, though there is an Imp!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DIdd55V2-ZY

"Who I am is where I stand. Where I stand is where I fall.” -- The Doctor

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Aug 19 2017, 7:37pm)


hatster
Rohan


Aug 21 2017, 8:49am

Post #22 of 174 (4057 views)
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His own mind [In reply to] Can't Post

I also think that Sam's use of the Ring was less dangerous because his mind was less affected or more his own than Frodo's. I need to trace why I think this, but it was my sense that Sauron could, to some extent, see through Frodo's eyes and trace him that way. Frodo's mind had slipped under his control that much.

Just a thought.

The term is over: the holidays have begun. The dream is ended: this is the morning.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 21 2017, 2:24pm

Post #23 of 174 (4032 views)
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Sauron is brooding, even disturbed and possibly worried [In reply to] Can't Post

Tolkien described how Sauron's shadow is present - the veils of Barad Dur - and is thinking about what he has seen and learned - a reforged sword born by a stern and kingly face. He must be wondering if this upstart has the Ring.

We also get a glimpse into the economy of Mordor - basically, it is a slave state and exacts tribute, food, goods. Vast slave fields by Lake Nurnen, vast wagon roads leading from East and South into Mordor.
We also learn that a great bulk of his forces on the Gorgoroth plain are men.

I wonder what Sauron would have done with the orcs had he won. Would they no longer be useful tools and could be eliminated? Men would be so much more entertaining to have as subjects.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 21 2017, 2:26pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 21 2017, 3:25pm

Post #24 of 174 (4016 views)
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Fear and Loathing within Mordor [In reply to] Can't Post

The cumulative effect of major defeats has started to reach the common orc, though they only hear bits and pieces from rumor.

Saruman crushed.
Pelennor crushed and Number One destroyed.

Shagrat may have reported that the tower of Cirith Ungol was assaulted and all killed except him (to cover what happened) so add another major defeat.

Things are not going quite as planned. Yes, the West has marched into his trap...but....something is amiss. It eats at Sauron as he ponders his moves.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 21 2017, 6:07pm

Post #25 of 174 (3990 views)
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Nice paintings [In reply to] Can't Post

https://ritalovestowrite.files.wordpress.com/...lpapermay-com_42.jpg

http://www.kursivom.ru/...16/06/tolkien_49.jpg

Nice map with Frodo and Sam's route - click on paths Frodo and Sam
http://lotrproject.com/...amp;layers=BTTTTTTTT


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 21 2017, 6:10pm)


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 21 2017, 9:05pm

Post #26 of 174 (1675 views)
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Cirith Ungol should have really weighed on Sauron's mind [In reply to] Can't Post

That tower was "defeated by an Elven warrior" while Sauron's armies almost had the upperhand on the Pelennor fields, meaning he should have been sure that he had swept Ithilien clear of all opposing armies, and really, how could an Elf take down that garrison alone? And who/what had wounded Shelob when no one ever had before? Just how did this happen so far behind the battle line? He should have been more worried about that anomaly than anything else. Gandalf was accounted for at Minas Tirith--who was his mysterious Force?


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 21 2017, 9:06pm

Post #27 of 174 (1673 views)
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My guess is he'd prefer orcs over men as servants. [In reply to] Can't Post

Somehow he controlled them all, as seen by the battle at the Black Gate, where they quailed when his mind was turned elsewhere and collapsed when he did, whereas Men had a mind of their own and were able to fight on. That independence would be a threat to his rule, for someone who wanted absolute control.


Hamfast Gamgee
Grey Havens

Aug 21 2017, 11:04pm

Post #28 of 174 (1663 views)
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Orcs do seem to like to have a rumble! [In reply to] Can't Post

And any old excuse seems to do. And the idea of outsiders just seems to increase. At first it is Orcs against anyone else. Then it's Mordor Orcs v Saruman Orcs, cursed traitors. Then it's Mordor Orcs v Morgul Orcs, cursed traitors. Then in Mordor it's various tribes of Orcs v each other. It's probably a good thing from an Orkish point of view that football, soccer for you Americans was never invented. Orckish holliganisum would have been quite an issue!


Hamfast Gamgee
Grey Havens

Aug 21 2017, 11:06pm

Post #29 of 174 (1663 views)
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Another thing he could be worried about. [In reply to] Can't Post

Was the fact that two bold spies where wondering around in Mordor unescourted. And he was aware of this fact as a close look at the text says.


Hamfast Gamgee
Grey Havens

Aug 21 2017, 11:23pm

Post #30 of 174 (1662 views)
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There is one thing said in these chapters I wonder about [In reply to] Can't Post

Which was something like that Sauron had taken the bait offered by the men of the west ie the idea that one of them had his Ring and as a result all of Mordor was emptied. I do find this unlikely and I also wonder if there is a way around this statement and if the Ring-bearer might have faced more foes on the way to Mount Doom. I mean would really every creature in Mordor been on the army to face Gondor's? Might there be a few civilians, stay at homes, even in Mordor. Or perhaps Mordor was emptied, officially, but it's client states where not all. Maybe some Men from the south could still be hurrying up to Mordor.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 22 2017, 1:34am

Post #31 of 174 (1648 views)
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When you look at Frodo and Sam's trail it takes them toward danger [In reply to] Can't Post

...more concentrated in the north by the Morannon. The area they crossed would have been jammed with Saurons armies but it appears most had already taken position behind the Black Gate. Sauron over stuffed the forces against the West. But still, looking at the path of Frodo and Sam it certainly makes sense they get caught up on the road. But, off the road the territory is not that hospitable for troop movement so I can understand how they could skirt the more traffic heavy paths. Sauron could never imagine infiltration. He did not plan for it.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 22 2017, 5:05pm

Post #32 of 174 (1587 views)
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Post deleted by Eruonen [In reply to]

 


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 22 2017, 5:14pm

Post #33 of 174 (1588 views)
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The Uruk Hai saw that they were wearing orc helms and shields....so I suppose they looked like [In reply to] Can't Post

small orcs......Red Eye marking. When the Uruk Hai said "your folk" it seemed he may be referring to another kind...human...but it probably seems to have meant orc kind as the usual depictions support.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 22 2017, 5:18pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 22 2017, 6:47pm

Post #34 of 174 (1574 views)
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Mount Doom [In reply to] Can't Post

The climax is approaching - our heroes are facing an almost impossible task of crossing the Gorgoroth plain - little water, little food, enemies potentially around and above, Frodo has the Ring weariness...but Sam, finds his inner resolve and drives both forward. Sam is absolutely a hero, if not the biggest hero of the book. Without Sam, Frodo would have failed, time and time again...and in the end he fails on his own.

The armies of the West are being observed and Sauron has rushed the bulk of his forces to meet them. His thought cannot begin to consider an inside threat - he is focused on Aragorn.

The Winds of the West are blowing - pushing his veil away. Is this the effort of Manwe? He controls the winds, airs and birds were his servants. The Eagles?


No One in Particular
Rivendell


Aug 23 2017, 12:32am

Post #35 of 174 (1567 views)
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"What light through yonder window breaks?" [In reply to] Can't Post

[reply
The Winds of the West are blowing - pushing his veil away. Is this the effort of Manwe? He controls the winds, airs and birds were his servants. The Eagles?


Manwe. or Illuvatar. Or Illuvatar giving Manwe orders. Smile

Without the wind to hasten Aragorn's forces, Gondor falls. Without the cloud cover breaking to lift men's spirits, Gondor falls.

The men (and Eowyn and the Hobbits) still have to put forth maximum effort; whoever is behind the Darkness Breaking didn't just wave a hand and magic the forces of Mordor away into dust-the Armies of the West still had to work-and work hard- to achieve victory. But Whomever did it leveedl the playing field enough to make an otherwise impossible victory possible.

While you live, shine
Have no grief at all
Life exists only for a short while
And time demands an end.
Seikilos Epitaph


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 23 2017, 2:51am

Post #36 of 174 (1554 views)
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It has been fun to read these tidbits that show more "active if undeclared" influences [In reply to] Can't Post

of the powers. These small hints have been throughout from "providence" or "fortune" or "luck" etc.

It is funny to come across dialogue tht you recognize from the film but out of its normal setting in the book. I am thinking of Sam and Frodo on the plain and some of that dialogue...Frodo getting suddenly possessive of the Ring and fearful of Sam (taking place on the Stair of Cirith Ungol in the film.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 23 2017, 6:04pm

Post #37 of 174 (1517 views)
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Another tidbit that supports somewhat the films design for Bara-dur and the Eye [In reply to] Can't Post

Sam and Frodo can see Bara-dur from the slope of Mt. Doom.
"...the cruel pinnacles and iron crown of the topmost tower...there stabbled northward a flame of red, the flicker of the piercing Eye....the Eye was not turned to see them.

Before this, we get maybe another incident of the powers at work...
Sam..."...a sense of urgency as if he had been called: "Now, now, or it will be too late!"


squire
Half-elven


Aug 23 2017, 6:28pm

Post #38 of 174 (1512 views)
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Well, no [In reply to] Can't Post

The full quote, that you have partially cited, actually contradicts the film's design choice. Below in bold are the key missing words:
...the cruel pinnacles and iron crown of the topmost tower of Barad-dur. One moment only it stared out, but as from some great window immeasurably high there stabbed northward a flame of red, the flicker of a piercing Eye; - LotR VI.3.
It makes sense that, even if Sauron's eye is far more than an actual physical eye in his body, he would nevertheless activate his power of spiritual vision from a lookout room, with a window of some kind, at the top of his tower.

The equivalent situation on the other side of the conflict, as we've seen, is that Denethor also retreats to a high room at the top of his castle's tower, to use his palantir - so we've already been primed to imagine that Sauron does the same thing only on a much greater scale. It's never made clear, but I believe that his palantir (the Ithil stone) is actually a strong component of his so-called Eye, at least as much as any telepathic power innate to his powerful spirit.



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


= Forum has no new posts. Forum needs no new posts.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 23 2017, 6:38pm

Post #39 of 174 (1509 views)
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I indicated " supports somewhat" - not exactly. [In reply to] Can't Post

It does serve to illustrate the red light coming from the topmost portion of the tower in a gaze in a certain direction and uses the Eye imagery.


Rembrethil
Tol Eressea


Aug 23 2017, 8:12pm

Post #40 of 174 (1498 views)
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Why doesn't Sauron sense the Ring when used in Mordor? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hullo all! Back for a quick visit.

My working theory is that the Nagzul are the one's with the ring-sniffing powers, and IIRC, they are all near Pellenor at this point. Do we get any indication that Sauron has anything like the Nazgul's powers to sense the Ring? Sure it has a part of himself/his power imbued within it, but do we have anything to make us think he is tuned to the homing signal it is sending out? I would think that Sauron might have above average sensitivity to the location of the Ring, but the Nazgul are the specialists, used not only as lackeys to do all the leg-work to find and return the Ring, but also to home in on it. Sauron merely holds the leashes and follows the hounds, as it were.

As for Sam's opinion, well, this is dialogue and not omniscient narration. I'm thinking he could well be mistaken. This might be an author's ploy to explain why Sam doesn't hide Frodo, put on the Ring, become invisible, tramp straight to the Cracks, drop it in, then high-tail it out of Mordor to get help for Frodo.

Sing a song of long lament.
The days be past, the years are spent.
The flames of fire, on funeral pyre
The warrior's soul it's wing'd way hath sent.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 23 2017, 8:22pm

Post #41 of 174 (1498 views)
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I don't think the Ring was used "in Mordor" - it was last used by Sam on the edge. [In reply to] Can't Post

Another interesting scene....Sam has a vision of Frodo in white with a ring of fire - and out of the fire spoke a commanding voice to Gollum:

"Begone, and trouble me no more! If you touch me ever again, you shall be cast yourself into the Fire of Doom!"

I suppose has to be Frodo's voice.


Rembrethil
Tol Eressea


Aug 23 2017, 8:33pm

Post #42 of 174 (1508 views)
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'A' for effort [In reply to] Can't Post

I love this fantastic reversal of fortunes! 'Eucotastrophe' as JRRT called it. Some may see it as a convenient Deus ex Machina, but for me, it puts me in mind of something my parents and the good teachers I had did for me.

Like all good parents and teachers, I was pushed to try new and more difficult things. Needless to say, I didn't always like it...Tongue Anywho, I was often given a problem or task I thought was impossible, but I was always told: 'Do your best!' or 'You can do this'. I used to think this was a flippant off-hand encouragement to make me do something I didn't want to do. In the end though, my teachers and parents were more stubborn that I was (and held the keys to the car), so I usually ended up doing whatever it was anyway. After doing it enough times, I discovered a few things:

1. I could often do more than I thought I could. (a.k.a. I didn't know as much as I thought I did.)

2. My parents and teachers were not actually sadists who enjoyed seeing me fail.

3. Whenever it really counted, and I came to the end of my own powers, they were there to help me.

This last realisation meant a lot to me. Whether it was being there to pick me up and dust me off when I fell to try again, or to give me that push I needed to get over the line and succeed, I finally twigged to it that they were actually on my side. They wanted to help me, but they also wanted to see how far I could get on my own, and they wanted me to see it too.

Whenever I encounter the eucotastrophe in LotR, I like to think that I know how the rescued party feels. They thought that they were out there on their own, alone, abandoned by the Valar and the West, only to realise, not only that they had come further than they ever dreamed, but that they were not alone after all; they were not forgotten. There was a wiser power working on their behalf and suddenly, that victory that seemed impossible is within reach because they wanted to see you succeed as much as you do.

Sing a song of long lament.
The days be past, the years are spent.
The flames of fire, on funeral pyre
The warrior's soul it's wing'd way hath sent.


Rembrethil
Tol Eressea


Aug 23 2017, 8:51pm

Post #43 of 174 (1494 views)
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The psychology of a talking Ring... [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, I do recall some who advocated that the Ring be treated as an independent character, so I suppose it could be argued that it might be the Ring speaking. IIRC, JRRT did write that the Ring was an 'amplifier', so to me, that implies passivity, but this doesn't necessarily imply that it is Frodo speaking either.

Perhaps we can examine it as a 'parasite' or 'virus'.

Perhaps in it's role as an amplifier, there is some residual feedback from the wearer that is appropriated by the Ring to construct it's own self-identity? In this case, it would need a 'host' to act. (Surely, on it's own, the Ring is incapable of movement, and like a virus, requires another to carry on it's own plans.) This might explain the seductive lure of the Ring and its uncanny ability to ferret out the most convincing temptations for each bearer.

To further the metaphor, at the time of the quote you mention, I think that Frodo is so overcome by the parasitic Ring, that at this point he is almost certainly not in full control of his actions or words. If the enslavement of the Ringwraiths offer any clue, he might well be losing his own personal identity, becoming a part of the Ring which, in itself, is a part of Sauron.

Sing a song of long lament.
The days be past, the years are spent.
The flames of fire, on funeral pyre
The warrior's soul it's wing'd way hath sent.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 23 2017, 8:54pm

Post #44 of 174 (1491 views)
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And we will see the words were true - at least in the ending. [In reply to] Can't Post

However, the Ring would not desire a return to the Fire.
I am curious about seeing Frodo in White.....what does that refer to?
How does it square with the Ring?
I don't see it as Sauron's voice...he would be aware.

As you state the Ring and Frodo are merging...maybe this is a vison of Frodo as Ring Lord - he is close.
The Nazgul were enslaved by the gift of their rings. Frodo has The Ring.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 23 2017, 9:01pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 23 2017, 9:05pm

Post #45 of 174 (1476 views)
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Frodo becoming like Gollum...make up shots [In reply to] Can't Post

https://static1.squarespace.com/...lord-of-the-ring.jpg

https://www.langweiledich.net/.../frodo_gollum_03.jpg

https://m.popkey.co/9a57fc/ZLxZ8.gif Fully in thrall to the Ring.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 23 2017, 9:11pm

Post #46 of 174 (1474 views)
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Oh, and Sauron does sense the Ring in Mount Doom [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Rembrethil
Tol Eressea


Aug 23 2017, 9:13pm

Post #47 of 174 (1475 views)
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The Ring's Purpose.. [In reply to] Can't Post

True, the Ring did not desire it's own destruction, however, as you do point out, Frodo was close to Ring Lord (more like Ring-slave in actual fact) status. I think the Ring, with whatever innate or borrowed consciousness it had, was quite satisfied that Frodo would not be able to destroy it. Evil always underestimates the power of Good-- al a the classic: 'IMPOSSIBLE!!!' incredulous villain death cry.

As for the white clothes, I have no concrete answer. There is probably a deeper symbolism here,but all I can think of is the white death shroud from the Barrow Wights' holes. This is Sam's POV, correct? I think he sees Frodo on the edge, and this manifestation is not one of power, but showcasing his extreme weakness and imminent defeat by the power of the Ring.

Sing a song of long lament.
The days be past, the years are spent.
The flames of fire, on funeral pyre
The warrior's soul it's wing'd way hath sent.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 23 2017, 9:18pm

Post #48 of 174 (1470 views)
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Sam's vision on the slope when Gollum confronts them. [In reply to] Can't Post

And, the "Ring consciousness" was able to prevent Frodo from destroying it...it took the wild card of Gollum "touching the Ring" which seems to invoke the words (whose words?) of his doom.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 23 2017, 9:18pm)


Rembrethil
Tol Eressea


Aug 23 2017, 9:19pm

Post #49 of 174 (1469 views)
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My Opinon ('Cause that's all I got!) [In reply to] Can't Post

I personally believe that Sauron sensed the Ring when it was put on and claimed by Frodo. Until now, Frodo had put no demand on the Ring beyond mere possession. I liken it to Aragorn's wresting of the palantir from Sauron. Frodo is now locked in direct conflict with Sauron for total control. I see this as the struggle Gandalf described when he said he could possibly claim the Ring for himself and become the new Dark Lord. Frodo has revealed himself to Sauron in this challenge, and that is why I think he could sense the Ring at that point.

Sing a song of long lament.
The days be past, the years are spent.
The flames of fire, on funeral pyre
The warrior's soul it's wing'd way hath sent.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 23 2017, 9:46pm

Post #50 of 174 (1460 views)
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It is murky because he does not have the ability to sense its location [In reply to] Can't Post

even when they are in Morder and on the slope of Mount Doom. As soon as it is placed on in Mount Doom he becomes Very Aware and in terror recalls the Nazgul. But yes, Sauron seems to know a halfling is involved...be it Pippen or Frodo....it seems all he knows is Baggins. But he is still focused on Aragorn. There is some confusion that certainly helps Sam and Frodo. To your point, all of that mental time that Frodo has with the struggle of the Ring...the Wheel of Fire, the Eye etc...seems to show a connection between him and Sauron. Yet, Sauron remains blind.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 23 2017, 9:49pm)


squire
Half-elven


Aug 23 2017, 10:05pm

Post #51 of 174 (2353 views)
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I have always seen Frodo "in white" as a clear reference... [In reply to] Can't Post

...to his essential purity and elevation in all ways except his enslavement to the Ring. The contradiction is intended: how can I say he is pure and elevated, when he is being controlled by the Ring? I think the point is that, unlike all the other Ringbearers, he is being overcome by the sheer power of the Ring, rather than by his own lust for power that the Ring amplifies. The others who feel its attraction, resistant or not, are different from Frodo. Isildur, Smeagol, Galadriel, Gandalf, Boromir, Denethor, Saruman all recognize the Ring's power to enhance their own power over others. Wrongly, of course: in fact, taking the Ring enslaves them (or would enslave them) rather than enhances them.

But Frodo is being overcome, not seduced. As he tries to resist, his hobbit-nature is elevated and purified, and he approaches a kind of sainthood - the sainthood we associate with martyrdom - by his long, slow, and ultimately hopeless resistance. Thus the white robe (in Sam's vision), and the wheel of fire at the breast: in every way except the only one that counts, Frodo has proven more able to resist the Ring than any other being in Middle-earth.



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
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Rembrethil
Tol Eressea


Aug 23 2017, 10:08pm

Post #52 of 174 (2345 views)
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Split-personality? [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm thinking that the Ring prior to its donning on Mt. Doom was an independent agent in whatever capacity it held. Yes, a part of Sauron, but a semi-autonomous part. I think Frodo's challenge supplies the final direct link to Sauron.

Sing a song of long lament.
The days be past, the years are spent.
The flames of fire, on funeral pyre
The warrior's soul it's wing'd way hath sent.


Rembrethil
Tol Eressea


Aug 23 2017, 10:23pm

Post #53 of 174 (2350 views)
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Saint Frodo [In reply to] Can't Post

I find this idea very compelling. However, do you mean to insist that Frodo had absolutely no desire for the Ring? Do you also mean to say that the Ring has enough innate power to overcome a bearer (Well, at least Frodo..)?

Continuing with the metaphor of sainthood, it seems to me that saints are made when they overcome some vice or test--such as 'saintly' patience, forgiveness, etc... If so, by my understanding of your words, Frodo had no inner vice and no longing for the Ring to overcome. From whence then does his saintly status come? What was he resisting? I had always thought the Ring worked on Frodo's small desire and eroded his resolved over time. I was under the impression that the Ring needed something to work with, else it would be creating the temptation in its bearer's mind. Hardly seems fair if the Ring can make you want it, even when you don't...

Sing a song of long lament.
The days be past, the years are spent.
The flames of fire, on funeral pyre
The warrior's soul it's wing'd way hath sent.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 23 2017, 10:41pm

Post #54 of 174 (2342 views)
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That is an interesting conception. [In reply to] Can't Post

 


squire
Half-elven


Aug 23 2017, 10:57pm

Post #55 of 174 (2346 views)
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It is a little bit of a stretch, I agree [In reply to] Can't Post

But I am trying to work within what I understand as Tolkien's conception of the Ring - which is, after all, not a real object but a metaphoric symbol.

I guess I'd say that even a hobbit (the "best hobbit in the Shire" being Frodo) can be corrupted by a force as great as the evil of Sauron. I am thinking of Galadriel's comment to Frodo:
'Before you could use that power you would need to become far stronger, and to train your will to the domination of others.' - LotR II.8
She is pointing out to a curious Frodo that he is not (yet, if ever) among the class of those who Sauron was attempting to ensnare and dominate with his Master Ring. She does, however, suggest that he could, with practice and determination, alter his essential hobbity nature and become great enough to claim and wield the One. I take that to mean that, by the time Frodo reaches the outskirts of Mordor, he has begun to think and feel in a way that allows the Ring to reach him - but because of the Ring's own influence. Even a hobbit can be corrupted, in other words, but such corruption is utterly alien to their nature and takes both time and immense force from the outside (such as proximity to Sauron/Mordor; and association with Smeagol over time).

Frodo falls, of course. It would go against the entire story for him not to. But he holds out, fighting it, all the way to the mountain, before he finally gives in, which gives fate, aka Gollum, a chance to intervene and succeed in destroying the Ring. Frodo's greatness was that his resistance for so long, against so great a challenge to his native virtue, enhanced his good qualities as much as it created a space for the corruption of the Ring. Saruman gives us this perception at the end:
Saruman rose to his feet, and stared at Frodo. There was a strange look in his eyes of mingled wonder and respect and hatred. ‘You have grown, Halfling,’ he said. ‘Yes, you have grown very much. You are wise, and cruel. You have robbed my revenge of sweetness, and now I must go hence in bitterness, in debt to your mercy. I hate it and you! - LotR VI.8
Cruel? Think about it.



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


= Forum has no new posts. Forum needs no new posts.


Rembrethil
Tol Eressea


Aug 23 2017, 11:33pm

Post #56 of 174 (2337 views)
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The loss of Eden and Fall from Grace [In reply to] Can't Post

The idea of 'cruelty' to me, seems to have some connexion with the 'wisdom' and 'growth' noted earlier. I interpret it to be indicative of a lost innocence and Hobbity naiveté on Frodo's part.

In a way, I think that The Shire is a sort of paradisaical Eden within the context of Middle-Earth. Hobbits are untouched by the Wide World around them, living in a wholesome ignorance. Indeed, many in M-E praise the down-to-earth virtues of the Hobbits. To further the metaphor, the Ring finds its way inside of The Shire and like Eden's serpent, opens the Hobbits' minds to a broader perspective, and in a way, the four Halflings find themselves expelled from the Garden.

All four of the Hobbits experience the world and a larger perspective--a sort of Fall from the primitive Grace they had before--, but none more than Frodo. He has indeed grown out of the simple wisdom that allowed him to enjoy the Shire and his vast worldly experience has spoilt his enjoyment of the simple life he once had. The others have not had such profound experiences, and they are still able to find a place within The Shire.

Returning home to the Scouring, they have come to a literal Paradise Lost, and Frodo uses his wisdom and experience to reshape Eden, but is unable to recapture it for himself. He is not the simple Hobbit he once was, and now he is only suited as a guardian, not a resident. The Shire was saved, but not for him.

The 'cruel' aspect to his wisdom and experience is what excludes him from the Shire. It is a by-product of the attainment of that wisdom. As we grow, we lost things like child-like wonder as we gain others such as critical thought. Not a bad thing, but a developing mental tool set. Alongside this mental growth we also gain the capacity for cunning and strategy. I believe it is this greater capacity for ulterior motives in actions that Saruman calls 'cruelty'. Frodo does know that the worst thing for Saruman is living in disgrace, and with that knowledge, how can he be sure that his prima facia kind act is really motivated by pure intention, without an undercurrent of ill-intent? This is what disqualifies Frodo from living in the Shire. He possesses the knowledge of the Serpent and fears passing on the forbidden fruit.

Sing a song of long lament.
The days be past, the years are spent.
The flames of fire, on funeral pyre
The warrior's soul it's wing'd way hath sent.


Darkstone
Immortal


Aug 23 2017, 11:51pm

Post #57 of 174 (2332 views)
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More like martyr Frodo. / [In reply to] Can't Post

 

******************************************
Queen Beruthiel, Queen Beruthiel, there's no one like Queen Beruthiel,
She's broken every Gondor law, she breaks the law of Earendil.
Her powers of feline-ation would make Aiwendil stare,
And when you reach the scene of crime - Queen Beruthiel's not there!
You may seek her in the Hallows, you may search throughout the square –
But I tell you once and once again, Queen Beruthiel's not there!

- Old Tollers' Book of Fat Cats on the Mat



No One in Particular
Rivendell


Aug 24 2017, 2:04am

Post #58 of 174 (2319 views)
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Sensing the Ring [In reply to] Can't Post

We have no concrete knowledge of whether or not Sauron can sense the Ring. (I have always assumed he could, honestly.) But Sauron is distracted; the War is not going well-his initial gambit has failed, Gondor still stands, and the Lord of the Nazgűl has perished most unexpectedly. Additionally, the upstart Ranger (and possible new Ring lord???) is now marching up the road to his front gate.

Which was, of course, exactly Aragorn's intention. Smile All of which is to say, Sauron's mind was focused everywhere except Gorgoroth and the road to Orodruin.

While you live, shine
Have no grief at all
Life exists only for a short while
And time demands an end.
Seikilos Epitaph


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 24 2017, 2:39pm

Post #59 of 174 (2280 views)
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The End of All Things [In reply to] Can't Post

Frodo makes his way inside Mt. Doom to the Cracks of Doom - but the Ring finally takes hold within the heart of Sauron's realm. Gollom, ever sly and driven by his Ring addiction, manages to find Frodo and the struggle begins.

Poor Sam, knocked down, is just a witness to the events. The Phial fails in this location. What would Sam have done with Frodo....would he have failed to stop him like Elrond with Isildur? Would Sam have wrestled with Frodo if he could locate him? Or would he lie weeping as Frodo walked by? Nobody knows of course, but I like to think that Sam, have such strong inner courage, would have confronted Frodo, with tears and all even if both were to go over the edge.

Gollum, focused entirely on the ring makes his fortunate step on the edge and loses his balance. No command from the Ring etc. just "luck" once again that nudges the outcome to its desired ending.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 24 2017, 2:41pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 24 2017, 4:35pm

Post #60 of 174 (2270 views)
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I assume that with the Shadow of Sauron dissipating so too did the Nazgul [In reply to] Can't Post

who were tied to him. As they were flying to Mount Doom I suspect they "vanished" and the Fell Beasts, now without control or purpose, flew into oblivion or to some far corner of the world. I don't know that they can survive on their own.

With so many orcs running into the Wild, it seems the lands would not be safe for a long while as they had the capacity to organize into tribes.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 24 2017, 4:37pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 24 2017, 7:14pm

Post #61 of 174 (2265 views)
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The Field of Cormallen [In reply to] Can't Post

In a way, the destruction of the Ring happens too fast. We get to the point and then.....it is over. I suppose that is how it has to be....not much else to say after that.

Now, our attention turns to the post-Downfall of Sauron world.


https://outofthisworldx.files.wordpress.com/...n-e1437847864637.jpg


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 24 2017, 7:16pm)


No One in Particular
Rivendell


Aug 25 2017, 1:38am

Post #62 of 174 (2223 views)
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Nazgűl [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
who were tied to him. As they were flying to Mount Doom I suspect they "vanished" and the Fell Beasts, now without control or purpose, flew into oblivion or to some far corner of the world. I don't know that they can survive on their own.

With so many orcs running into the Wild, it seems the lands would not be safe for a long while as they had the capacity to organize into tribes.


"as caught in the fiery ruin of hill and sky, and crackled, withered, and went out."

So yep, they pretty much vanished in a puff of...something or other. Smile

I would also agree that the lands were probably dangerous for some time after; even in the appendices it mentions somewhere that the armies of Gondor and Rohan fought on many fields valiantly together. One resumes that at least some of those battles would be with bands of Orcs or evil Men who escaped the ruin of Mordor.

While you live, shine
Have no grief at all
Life exists only for a short while
And time demands an end.
Seikilos Epitaph


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 25 2017, 4:08pm

Post #63 of 174 (2194 views)
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This is a slim chapter but a few interesting observations [In reply to] Can't Post

The most difficult fighting appears to have been with the men of the East and Southrons. The orcs and trolls fled with their master destroyed. Men, still were in opposition until "subdued". I suppose this means they either eventually retreated away or surrendered with likely pledges of no further hostile actions etc. But...we know there were further campaigns in later years against those peoples.

Another tidbit....the Host of the West also destroyed fortresses in the North of Mordor....I don't see them identified on the map.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 25 2017, 6:46pm

Post #64 of 174 (2179 views)
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Also, we have another instance of the Standing Silence when the [In reply to] Can't Post

host gathers for their meal. I have noticed a lot more of these little
details over this entire read through, very satisfying.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 25 2017, 9:19pm

Post #65 of 174 (2171 views)
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The Steward and the King [In reply to] Can't Post

How Faramir fell in love with Eowyn.....


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 28 2017, 11:27am

Post #66 of 174 (2129 views)
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An A+++ for your response [In reply to] Can't Post

That is a tremendously insightful way to frame it, Rem (as always). I think most readers feel like they've been abandoned at this point and only remembered begrudgingly and at the last minute. Yours is a much more compassionate way of looking at it.


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 28 2017, 11:38am

Post #67 of 174 (2118 views)
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The neat things about those details like the Standing Silence [In reply to] Can't Post

Is that he includes them at all. I can easily see an exasperated editor saying, "This fairy tale of yours has grown from one book into three. We must cut out these extraneous details. Who cares if they stand and semi-pray before meals, for example? What's that got to do with the quest and/or hobbits. Cut, cut, cut!"'

But those details are what immerse us in the world, so we're lucky they're there.


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 28 2017, 11:44am

Post #68 of 174 (2116 views)
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Oh, love, right [In reply to] Can't Post

On first read, I couldn't figure out where the Faramir/Eowyn romance chapter was going, or why it was even there. By this time we have traversed a whole lot of Middle-earth, and no one's fallen in love or even had a temporary dalliance, nor even expressed the desire for one. Just little hints about love from afar (Aragorn on Cerin Amroth) or twisted love (Wormtongue's lust for Eowyn) or foolishly unrequited love (Eowyn for Aragorn).

But this time, by golly, there will be flirting, and awkward advances, and hormones, and kissing, and even a plighting of troth.

I suppose Tolkien framed the romance, as usual, as part of the larger story, specifically that they both needed to heal from the Black Breath, especially Eowyn, and what they could give each other surpassed even Aragorn's cool healing powers. But it remains a chapter unlike any other.


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 28 2017, 11:49am

Post #69 of 174 (2118 views)
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Not only was the destruction of the Ring too fast, so was the rescue [In reply to] Can't Post

as the hobbits conveniently go comatose for a few weeks, and the narrator lays down his pen.Even the movie showed the Ring dissolving slowly on the lava, so tough that it didn't give in right away.

I think there's something about audiences that we want the story's climax drawn out more: an evil space station should have sequential explosions, a final sword battle should not be over with a single thrust and death, etc. It's a gut-level thing. I'm not sure that drawing out the climax is always a good thing, and it can certainly be prolonged to the point of silliness. But we've gone so far with Frodo & Sam, and invested so much in their travails, it seems we deserve a bit more payoff for our attachment.


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 28 2017, 11:56am

Post #70 of 174 (2114 views)
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White robes--not only the Barrow, but the Nazgul [In reply to] Can't Post

ok, they were gray:

"Immediately, though everything else remained as before, dim and dark, the shapes became terribly clear. He was able to see beneath their black wrappings. There were five tall figures: two standing on the lip of the dell, three advancing. In their white faces burned keen and merciless eyes; under their mantles were long grey robes; upon their grey hairs..."

But my point is that they were these black guys on black horses, and they undoubtedly had black sox, black underwear, and solid black business cards--everything was black. But underneath, they weren't. So, even they had some color variation.

Still, it is jarring to have a book on good and evil where Frodo is good but appears in evil form as a white being. I think maybe the symbolism of him appearing in black might have been less plausible, because we couldn't really believe (nor Sam) that he's become a Nazgul.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 28 2017, 3:40pm

Post #71 of 174 (2090 views)
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Faramir zeroed in on Eowyn and persistently wooed her. Finally, her [In reply to] Can't Post

infatuation with Aragorn breaks and the icy warrior code melts. Healing is now her passion and she sees Faramir anew. It is a short and sweet courtship and serves to wrap up some character loose ends.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 28 2017, 8:47pm

Post #72 of 174 (2068 views)
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Ioreth is amusing..... [In reply to] Can't Post

JRRT has her speaking to her kinswoman like the neighborhood gossip.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 28 2017, 9:39pm

Post #73 of 174 (2065 views)
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Ioreth...for some reason I think of Aunt Bee (Andy Griffith Show) [In reply to] Can't Post

https://upload.wikimedia.org/...and_Aunt_Bee_101.JPG

Here she is talking to Clara ( like the "kinswoman" )


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 28 2017, 9:43pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 29 2017, 4:51am

Post #74 of 174 (2041 views)
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The acceptance and crowning of King Elessar takes place on the Pelennor [In reply to] Can't Post

vs the highest level in the film. It was key to show in the book that Aragorn first presented himself to the population and asked for their acceptance of his lordship - after the appropriate demonstrations and official recognitions by Faramir, the Prince of Dol Amroth and the forces he led. The film had to condense the scene of crowning and marriage. By choosing the highest level it served both purposes with a great location for the audience to take in the grandeur.

At first, when I read that a "casket" was brought out and the crown removed I had the image of a disinterred King being hauled out and the casket opened to remove his crown. Then, I realized that it had to be a large box with the crown in it.

A rather scary looking Aragorn....serious, aged, grim...in fact, pissed off.

https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/...iaEvvZDNlam2e2mMBZlQ

A more weathered Aragorn
http://tolkiengateway.net/...n_Howe_-_Elessar.jpg


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 29 2017, 4:59am)


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 29 2017, 6:53pm

Post #75 of 174 (1992 views)
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I think of Ioreth as counterpart to Butterbur: folksy, chatty, humorous, commoners. // [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 29 2017, 8:29pm

Post #76 of 174 (1794 views)
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This image does a fine job of fitting her to my mind [In reply to] Can't Post

http://tolkiengateway.net/wiki/Ioreth

Or

http://d1nr5wevwcuzuv.cloudfront.net/...dor_100_original.jpg


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 29 2017, 8:31pm)


Hamfast Gamgee
Grey Havens

Aug 29 2017, 9:55pm

Post #77 of 174 (1787 views)
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I do seriously think [In reply to] Can't Post

That Tolkien himself got a bit bored with the entire Frodo, Sam, Gollum story arc and possibly even with Hobbits and wanted to get back to the heroic Gondor and lost kings and shinning knights bit as quick as he could! Almost like Sauron in that respect, he prefered the big battles and the mighty armies and kings as opposed to the little people. Though I suppose we do get back to the little people a bit later.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 29 2017, 11:49pm

Post #78 of 174 (1782 views)
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The Many Partings chapter does read as a sequential list of necessary [In reply to] Can't Post

hello and goodbye, farewells and until we meet agains. It was unavoidable but I sense he rather flew through the chapter - but it has some nice gems in it.

We have Faramir and Eowyn set up within their own garden like principality.
I like the small horn that Merry is given as a gift.
Treebeards cursing of the orcs is a nice long run of pent up words!
Frodo and Sam certainly had some time to recover physically with plenty of rest, food and drink.
Arwen tells Frodo that he can take her place on the ship to The West.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 1:57am

Post #79 of 174 (1768 views)
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As the story winds down I also get the impression Tolkien wanted to use some [In reply to] Can't Post

words and places that he had created and found places to use them:

marimaitesincahonda -Treebeard - Ent curse word for orc?

willow-meads of Tasarinan (sunken Beleriand...rising again?)
http://www.glyphweb.com/arda/t/tasarinan.php


noWizardme
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 10:18am

Post #80 of 174 (1744 views)
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Nudge or luck? [In reply to] Can't Post

Interesting subthread! These days I assume that there are Higher Powers nudging our heroes a little closer to success, but any such interventions are subtle. Subtle enough that a reader of LOTR can also choose to see it as luck: the weather changes, and the characters regard this as of metaphysical as well as military significance, but a reader usually doesn't have to accept the metaphysical angle if they don't want to.

Why would benevolent Higher Powers nudge (changes in the weather; a fortuitous find of drinkable water in Mordor) rather than wrench with overt miracles? Partly of course the drama of the story is spoiled if some Higher Power is bound to come along and fix things. But I think it's also consistent with hat we see of the Valar in the Sil. They seem a very hesitant and unsure bunch of divines, not at all clear about how to deliver Eru's vision and when their actions might do more harm than good. So maybe they wait, see what appears to be 'meant' to happen, and give things a very careful push.

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


enanito
Lorien

Aug 30 2017, 1:14pm

Post #81 of 174 (1736 views)
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Journey vs Destination? [In reply to] Can't Post

I rather agree about the denouement of the whole Ring storyline.

Trying to imagine why it might have been presented this way - could it be the sense that many real-life dramatic things are "over in a flash", as opposed the drawn out Hollywood style imaging?

Or perhaps Tolkien was more interested in the journey as opposed to the destination? Meaning that the changes that occur during the Quest meant a lot more than actually what happened at the very End? Hence the Ring's actual destruction is mentioned almost in passing, while its effect on everything up to that point is much more detailed?


enanito
Lorien

Aug 30 2017, 1:43pm

Post #82 of 174 (1732 views)
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Involved in things that "Really Matter"? [In reply to] Can't Post

Stretching...

Another way to look at this would be that the Higher Powers only involve themselves in matters that are truly important. From any one person's POV, what happens to them is indeed truly important -- but the Valar definitely have different ideas about what is and isn't important. The vagaries and fluctuations of individual or community destinies doesn't seem to much rise to the level of DefCon5, requiring heavenly intervention.

Giving the Valar the benefit of the doubt (i.e., assuming they're not lazy, uncaring, and aloof!), Eru's plan seems to allow for a lot of internal fluidity. Choices are made for good and for bad, and sometimes events are constrained by forces outside individual or group control. But since that's all accounted for in Eru's plan, no intervention is needed.

But if there's something that 'must happen', like Sauron's destruction, then the Valar might just nudge things here and there, otherwise the point would come when they'd need more than just a subtle push.

OK, that was quite a stretch trying to justify the Valar, and I'm sure there's plenty of holes in what I just wrote...


(This post was edited by enanito on Aug 30 2017, 1:46pm)


noWizardme
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 2:00pm

Post #83 of 174 (1722 views)
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I wasn't seeing the Valar as being lazy or disengaged [In reply to] Can't Post

I wasn't seeing the Valar as being lazy or disengaged - just as being very cautious about intervening. Either they are cautious because they only work on a really big scale, or because they are very aware of intervening in the wrong way. As far as I remember, it's not all that clear how much they know about how Eru's plan is to be brought about. Evidently it can sometimes involve a lot of mayhem and misery, at least in the short term. Perhaps they know that Sauron is 'meant' to be defeated now, or perhaps he's meant to rule for a while and that isn't clear to them until they see how things are going?

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 2:15pm

Post #84 of 174 (1720 views)
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Valar conversations [In reply to] Can't Post

Manwe: Ok, I will help them with some wind so at least they can see and have some inspiration....nobody do anything else.
Tulkas: Hmm......that little guy on the edge...just a nudge....done!
Varda: Tulkas! What did you do?! We were to only inspire them!
Tulkas: I finish things, that is my purpose, cracking his knuckles.

http://tolkiengateway.net/wiki/Tulkas

Eru: I close my eyes for one Age and look what happens!
Oh well, the music has completed a cycle, let us start anew.


noWizardme
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 2:20pm

Post #85 of 174 (1714 views)
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oh, I don't know... [In reply to] Can't Post

I quite like the way it is done.
Sam drags the wounded Frodo away but escape is impossible and they end the chapter composing themselves for death. Cut to Aragorn et al, arriving back with them the moment after Pippin has been submerged under a troll, also composing himself for death. Brief but dramatic scenes of Barad-dur toppling, orcs going mad etc. The eagles Pippin spotted have come not so much as an air force, but as a medivac mission.

In an action movie remake perhaps we get Sam bundling Frodo into a (wondrously insulated) wheelbarrow and off they barrel down a surging river of lava, while the nazgul and eagles dog fight overhead. Just when the hobbits seem to have brought the barrow to the bank, Golumn floats up from the lava, not dead after all, and he and Sam have a fight as technically accomplished and as dull and drawn-out (to me) as a prog rock drum solo (or Thorin vs. Azog in BOTFA).

Wink
Not an improvement from my POV. But it's OK if others would prefer it that way....

Personally, I think it's important that Frodo does not only expect death (as he has done for some time) but seems almost to get to the point of welcoming it or needing it. There has to be no escape except by miracle for this to work. Waking, and saved by a miracle, Frodo has to struggle (and eventually fail) to fit into a new life: this seems to me to be the point of what would otherwise be an overlong denouement of the story. If it was just the good old-fashioned 'weddings and promotions', you'd have thought Tolkien could have got it done in just a chapter or so.

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm

(This post was edited by noWizardme on Aug 30 2017, 2:21pm)


noWizardme
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 2:23pm

Post #86 of 174 (1708 views)
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valar dohaeris :) // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


noWizardme
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 2:25pm

Post #87 of 174 (1709 views)
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Just goes to show - discretion is the better part of Valar... // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 2:27pm

Post #88 of 174 (1707 views)
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LOL! [In reply to] Can't Post

Laugh


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 2:30pm

Post #89 of 174 (1707 views)
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Visions of Terminator.....Gollum rises from the lava....... [In reply to] Can't Post

The ending had to come and it is going to feel swift once it happens..it must...it is just that the journey was so full events, places etc. that the ending is necessarily abrupt.....it is not a criticism but just a reaction.


noWizardme
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 2:58pm

Post #90 of 174 (1701 views)
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Certainly the story has to manage a big change of gears here... [In reply to] Can't Post

We go from intense excitement and high stakes to smaller-scale stuff. As a younger, more action-hungry reader, I used sometimes to skip the rest. Now I've come to quite like it - or at least to have more ideas about why it shouldn't just have been drastically reduced y an editor...

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 3:01pm

Post #91 of 174 (1700 views)
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The old saying that one should enjoy and treasure the journey rather than just the destination. [In reply to] Can't Post

 


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 30 2017, 3:05pm)


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 30 2017, 4:28pm

Post #92 of 174 (1693 views)
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I think it also matters how personally attached you are to the characters [In reply to] Can't Post

I quite liked the principal ones and didn't want the story to end, even if it meant more uneventful chapters like the very first one, where hobbits gossip in inns and plan birthdays. But most people expect the story to wind up and let them move on to other things, so wrapping up is the way to go.

You bring up a good point about Frodo being on the verge of death, even wanting it. That's a new plot point, actually, and something that frames the remaining chapters, all the way to the goodbye scene at the end (spoilers! Wink). None of that would have had much impact if things had gone Star Trek style:

"Mount Doom is going to blow in 5 seconds."
"How long will it take to teleport Frodo to safety?"
"Four seconds." [Do you even have to ask?]
"Oh, look, it's Frodo safe and sound, and we all live happily ever after."

But even if I find the Ring-ending too brief as a reader, the hero-ending is emotionally raw and disturbing as the they seem to be caught up in the same fate as the Ring & Gollum:


Quote
Frodo and Sam could go no further. Their last strength of mind and body was swiftly ebbing. They had reached a low ashen hill piled at the Mountain’s foot; but from it there was no more escape. It was an island now, not long to endure, amid the torment of Orodruin. All about it the earth gaped, and from deep rifts and pits smoke and fumes leaped up. Behind them the Mountain was convulsed. Great rents opened in its side. Slow rivers of fire came down the long slopes towards them. Soon they would be engulfed. A rain of hot ash was falling.
...
And so it was that Gwaihir saw them with his keen far-seeing eyes, as down the wild wind he came, and daring the great peril of the skies he circled in the air: two small dark figures, forlorn, hand in hand upon a little hill, while the world shook under them, and gasped, and rivers of fire drew near. And even as he espied them and came swooping down, he saw them fall, worn out, or choked with fumes and heat, or stricken down by despair at last, hiding their eyes from death.

Especially that part in bold. This is mercifully so much better than Gollum emerging from the lava for one last fight. Instead the characters are fighting death itself, physically and emotionally, and they appear to have gone over the brink.


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 30 2017, 4:39pm

Post #93 of 174 (1693 views)
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Points well made, but at the same time, this is a fairy story [In reply to] Can't Post

and I would almost expect more magical intervention, and for it to be much less subtle, given the norms of fairy stories, instead of lucky weather changes and ambiguous nudges here and there. Not saying they are needed, and in fact it makes it more fun as a reader to look for clues of divine providence/valar discretion or not, but I can easily see another writer having Sauron emerge from Barad-dur as a 200-meter tall warrior-demon striding to Mt Doom to stop what's happening there, and Tulkas emerging suddenly as another 200-meter tall angel champion to fight him in an epic duel to thwart him, with lots of sparks from sword clashes, etc. That is just so Hollywood. And actually, it would fit within the genre.

We're lucky Tolkien thought otherwise, but I think deep in his writer blood he was going to make this a story about how little people can shape the world, and his thematic dogma would have prevented any towering god-duels. (Let's just hope the next movie gives us god-duels and gets it right. Wink)


noWizardme
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 5:24pm

Post #94 of 174 (1692 views)
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Arrgh- now you have me imagining "the Power Rangers ending" :o [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I can easily see another writer having Sauron emerge from Barad-dur as a 200-meter tall warrior-demon striding to Mt Doom to stop what's happening there, and Tulkas emerging suddenly as another 200-meter tall angel champion to fight him in an epic duel to thwart him, with lots of sparks from sword clashes, etc.


Power Rangers Middle-earth: the eagles are of course robots that assemble into Tulkas, and Arwen gets to be the Pink Ranger....

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 30 2017, 8:42pm

Post #95 of 174 (1679 views)
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Now you're talking! [In reply to] Can't Post

All we need is some financing, and we'll remake the LOTR movies the way they should have been made all along!


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 9:00pm

Post #96 of 174 (1679 views)
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Arwen must be played by Megan Fox of course. [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Aug 30 2017, 10:03pm

Post #97 of 174 (1662 views)
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Nooo! [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Arwen must be played by Megan Fox of course.


Must...not...kill...tornsib.

"Who I am is where I stand. Where I stand is where I fall.” -- The Doctor


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 10:18pm

Post #98 of 174 (1659 views)
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Absolutely, there can be no substitutions for such a Transformer LOTR. [In reply to] Can't Post

Ye of little faith in the awesomeness of Ms. Fox.

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/...e88a6ec010be82aa.jpg

http://www.develop-online.net/...d%20the%20scenes.JPG

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/...1448ff3dc98aef53.jpg


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 30 2017, 10:25pm)


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Aug 30 2017, 10:26pm

Post #99 of 174 (1653 views)
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Well, you're right about that! [In reply to] Can't Post

I have very little little faith in the awesomeness of Megan Fox. Evil

On the other hand, I might be able to get behind Lily Collins (just announded as signed on to play Edith Bratt in the Tolkien biopic) for Arwen:



"Who I am is where I stand. Where I stand is where I fall.” -- The Doctor

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Aug 30 2017, 10:31pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 30 2017, 10:33pm

Post #100 of 174 (1644 views)
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That is news....slight thread diversion but it came up....see in Main [In reply to] Can't Post

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/...lkien-biopic-1033539

Lily Collins Joins Nicholas Hoult in J.R.R. Tolkien Biopic


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 30 2017, 10:35pm)


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Aug 30 2017, 10:37pm

Post #101 of 174 (1444 views)
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I know! [In reply to] Can't Post

I wrote the post in Main. Laugh

"Who I am is where I stand. Where I stand is where I fall.” -- The Doctor


noWizardme
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 9:41am

Post #102 of 174 (1409 views)
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god-duels: Aslan vs. White witch [In reply to] Can't Post

well there's this, from another Inkling:


Quote
"Off my back, children," shouted Aslan. And they both tumbled off. Then with a roar that shook all Narnia from the western lamp-post to the shores of the eastern sea the great beast flung himself upon the White Witch. Lucy saw her face lifted towards him for one second with an expression of terror and amazement. Then Lion and Witch rolled over together but with the Witch underneath; and at the same moment all war-like creatures whom Aslan had led from the Witch's house rushed madly on the enemy lines...

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe


So Aslan kills the Witch (it being a children's book the 'camera' turns away from the actual event). The Pevensie children (the human heroes of the book) have done their part, but it's god on god (or in this case probably allegorical God on false-god) for the ending. It's an example of your point that other writers prefer to be less subtle with there fairy-story magical interventions -especially perhaps when the author has a purpose, such as Lewis' wish to make the Narnia stories a Christian allegory.


In the quote, the odd-seeming information that the Witch is underneath as they go down is meant, I presume, to suggest that Aslan is winning. A deconstruction whereby the Witch is an uppity female who is being put in her place by a male-on-top is of course possible and might be interesting, but is probably out of scope for this subthread.

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 31 2017, 12:47pm

Post #103 of 174 (1409 views)
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CS Lewis adhered to the norms more than his buddy Tolkien; And, what do we do about those powerful women? [In reply to] Can't Post

That's the kind of climactic moment I expect in just about every fairy tale, past or present, including sci-fi stories, and every action movie. (No one really thought Wonder Woman would get through her movie without fighting Aries, did they? --though I did enjoy it, and the fight came about unexpectedly.)

But, oh, perilously dost thou stray close to the brink of sexism in thy thread, Wizard of Sea-earth. Isn't the evil character in fairy stories almost always a witch? Shouldn't powerful women always be put in their place? And what sane man would give them the right to vote, anyway? (Well, um, a certain adaption of another story about a Snow Queen comes awkwardly to mind, but no accusations, you were updating it, not originating it.) :)

On the other hand, I'm not sure gender is always significant--unless the character is a eunuch, they're going to be male or female, there just aren't too many options (unless Ursula LeGuin is writing). In Beowulf, it wasn't enough to kill the male-monster, they had to kill his mom too, so let's say Beowulf was ahead of its time in the anti-sexist crusade.


noWizardme
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 1:51pm

Post #104 of 174 (1396 views)
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A talking Fox in LOTR? Surely not :) // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 2:16pm

Post #105 of 174 (1396 views)
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She does not have to say a word! ;) [In reply to] Can't Post

But a Transformers / Power Rangers version of LOTR almost demands her notable skills. Maybe some scene driven screaming / shouting or whispered dialogue. I would like to see her heal a LEGO Frodo.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 31 2017, 2:18pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 2:31pm

Post #106 of 174 (1390 views)
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Why did Celeborn say to Aragorn [In reply to] Can't Post

"May your doom be other than mine, and your treasure remain with you to the end!"

Sounds like he is in a terrible marriage and a looming divorce will reduce his net worth.

Why would he want Aragorn's doom to be different?
Was his destiny so bad that he wished another on Aragorn?
Yes, Celeborn will leave behind "treasure" of a kind in Lothlorien but
he will be going to the "treasured" isle.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 31 2017, 2:31pm)


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Aug 31 2017, 2:58pm

Post #107 of 174 (1384 views)
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"May your doom be other than mine..." [In reply to] Can't Post

Celeborn's treasure is Galadriel. Celeborn seems to be referring to his looming (if temporary) separation from Galadriel as he probably knows that she intends to return to the West while the Elf-lord feels he must remain (at least for a time) with his folk in Middle-earth. If Celeborn remains then he must part with his life-mate, If he sails into the West then he abandons his responsibilities to the remaining Galadhrim of Lórien.

"Who I am is where I stand. Where I stand is where I fall.” -- The Doctor

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Aug 31 2017, 3:00pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 3:06pm

Post #108 of 174 (1376 views)
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"100 years is a mere blink in the life of an elf. I'm patient. I can wait." As Thranduil said. [In reply to] Can't Post

Celeborn will be re-united with his love of the last, though it appears he was the last to leave with the remnant of the Eldar who stayed the longest. A little time away can do good for the balance of their immortal marriage.

http://tolkiengateway.net/wiki/Celeborn


noWizardme
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 3:26pm

Post #109 of 174 (1376 views)
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You realise that this is, of course like asking Merry to comment on pipe-weed.... [In reply to] Can't Post

So many things I like to think about....

A fight certainly provides an exciting point in a story, and can be made to offer a 'winner' and a 'loser'. So perhaps it is not surprising if many stories old and new have ended up with a 'boss battle'. Obviously it isn't obligatory; the Snow Queen (Hans Christian-Andersen's original story) for example has our female hero Gerda get into the Snow Queen's castle to rescue her (male) friend Kai - but the Snow Queen is out at the time and does not show up to resist (for interesting reasons I'll come to later).

Such a 'boss battle' finish does seem nearly obligatory in current action movies. Regarding the film Wonder Woman [and note if you haven't seen the film: this paragraph contains spoilers], personally I found her encounter with Ares rather frustrating: I was finding the explosions and chucking of magic and heavy objects at each other a distraction from what thought was a really good (and possibly quite original idea): Ares thinks that humanity are a mistake because they have free will, and are therefore capable of either evil or good. At least, that was my reading. That interested me more than all the CGI - but that might only go to show that I don't really get action movies or superhero movies.

Is the evil character in fairy stories (and so ending up 'underneath' in the boss battle) really almost always female? I'm not disagreeing with you here, I'm literally saying that I don't know. The Wicked Witch is certainly a folk tale staple, but so are male figures such as the Wolf or the Greedy King, Giant or Ogre.

Certainly when a storyteller invents a human or animal character it will usually have to be a he, she (or possibly nowadays a 'they'). For some readers (both casual and deeply thoughtful or analytical) the character's gender is unimportant: for others that choice is going to lead to a lot of assumptions or conclusions. For example, you may remember that the last 'official' read-through had a good discussion about whether it was significant that Tolkien made Shelob specifically a 'she'. One issue was that most of the LOTR characters (numerically) are male, and so it looks like a deliberate choice.

So - where does this get us:
*The big bad is sometimes (or even often) a female

*To be a big bad you must be a powerful woman (or man) - your role in the story is, after all to prevent the protagonists from getting what they want easily or too soon. For some readers and societies at least, 'powerful woman' is creepy and unnatural anyway, and the storyteller can ride on that.

Which makes me think - stories from cultures that thought 'powerful woman' was creepy might result in us having more female antagonist than protagonists. Again, I don't know, though perhaps someone has done a PhD or two counting these things. Back to Snow Queen again - Gerda is a powerful female, but (in Hand C-A's version) she is powerful in a nineteenth century feminine way that nowadays can seem peculiar. Her power is in being a very Romantic (as in cap. R Romantic Movement) figure. Specifically, I see her as the Eternal Feminine. She doesn't stick a sword in the Snow Queen (c.f. Eowyn), she walks into the SQ's palace barefoot, dispels the demonic guards by reciting the Lord's Prayer, and then releases her friend Kai from the spell binding him by crying. Gerda is all feminine feeling, and Kai has got himself into trouble partly by being all masculine intellect. It's also significant that Hans C-A insisted that Gerda is a child - she and Kai are not lovers, and she does not recover her lover from a romantic (little r) rival. All these themes of feminine (and childhood) innocence and purity risk being weird or even creepy to a modern audience. But perhaps they made Gerda a more acceptable character to Victorian audiences, who might have struggled with an Eowyn or a Luthien.

CS Lewis' Witch bears a resemblance (co-incidental or not) to the Snow Queen. And for Hans C-A's Gerda we maybe have Lucy Pevensie, one of Narnia's best characters, I think. But maybe it is significant that Lucy, like Gerda is a girl (c.f. teenager or woman). Lewis seems to have trouble with writing positive post-pubescent female characters: The White Witch and the Lady of the Green Kirtle are out and out villianesses. Susan Pevensie is pushed into the role of worrywort fun spoiler, before being reported to be, in The Last Battle interested in nothing now-a-days except nylons and lipstick and invitations.' We don't get an Eowyn or even a Galadriel. Maybe that is because of CS Lewis' thoughts and experience about women permeating his story; maybe it's how he felt the stories ought to go, for other reasons.

Another clear Lewis/Tolkien difference is that Lewis (I think) quite specifically wants to use Narnia books as a kind of pulpit, whereas Tolkien has understood that the more understated his moral messages are, the more universal they can be.

You ask "what do we do about those powerful women?"
Eowyn for President, perhaps?

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


noWizardme
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 3:30pm

Post #110 of 174 (1374 views)
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Additionally, Celeborn has lost Lorien [In reply to] Can't Post

The power to preserve it as a sort of private corner of the First Age has gone along with the One Ring. That's a permanent loss.

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Aug 31 2017, 3:45pm

Post #111 of 174 (1368 views)
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Sooner or later. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Celeborn will be re-united with his love of the last, though it appears he was the last to leave with the remnant of the Eldar who stayed the longest. A little time away can do good for the balance of their immortal marriage.


Yes, eventually Celeborn takes ship. But by remaining in Middle-earth he takes the risk that his physical existence could end before then and he might only be reunited with Galadriel in the Halls of Mandos. There was also the option of remaining in Middle-earth indefinitely and fading.

"Who I am is where I stand. Where I stand is where I fall.” -- The Doctor


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Aug 31 2017, 3:45pm

Post #112 of 174 (1368 views)
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Sooner or later. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Celeborn will be re-united with his love of the last, though it appears he was the last to leave with the remnant of the Eldar who stayed the longest. A little time away can do good for the balance of their immortal marriage.


Yes, eventually Celeborn takes ship. But by remaining in Middle-earth he takes the risk that his physical existence could end before then and he might only be reunited with Galadriel in the Halls of Mandos. There was also the option of remaining in Middle-earth indefinitely and fading.

"Who I am is where I stand. Where I stand is where I fall.” -- The Doctor


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 3:59pm

Post #113 of 174 (1367 views)
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Yes, the loss of the power of Nenya will fade Lothlorien [In reply to] Can't Post

however, I have to imagine the Tol Eresea forests are even more grand. It is like moving from a home you have lived in for most of your life....even if the new home is better in all ways..there is the feeling of loss. That may be similar to what he is feeling...everything Galadriel and him have built is ending.

Aragorn will have his mortal doom.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 31 2017, 4:00pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 4:28pm

Post #114 of 174 (1354 views)
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The traveling company chances upon Saruman and Grima.... [In reply to] Can't Post

Saruman, in defeat, is an interesting character...

He states "You have doomed yourselves, and you know it."

I can only think he is referring to the diminishing of the Rings of Power.
He is mocking Galadriel and Celeborn for the loss of Lothlorien.
I suppose is he is suggesting that Gandalf (really him) had a chance to rule over all and cast it aside.

He then states: "And now, what ship will bear you back across so wide a sea?....."It will be a grey ship, and full of ghosts."

Why does he think the Straight Road is closed to them?
He seems to think the West somehow has lost.

It appears a cast out Istari without a staff is basically powerless - he appears to have lost all of his "magic" ability. But he is still persuasive and is able to cause much trouble as we will soon see.


noWizardme
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 5:25pm

Post #115 of 174 (1346 views)
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"And now, what ship will bear you back across so wide a sea? [In reply to] Can't Post

A nice catch from our lat read-through was a.s. noting that Saruman is quoting to Galadriel a line from her song to Frodo (see http://newboards.theonering.net/...i?post=915428#915428 ). We discussed various explanations, but personally I prefer squire's the idea that this line is a well-known one from Noldor poetry: a little as if someone IRL were to say sarcastically 'so - climbing a stairway to heaven, are we?'

I don't think Saruman really thinks the way to the West is closed to them; I parse the 'ghosts; as meaning 'regrets', and see Saruman a saying that their dream of finally returning to the West will be spoiled by their regrets. Or at least he hopes so - spiteful man that he now is.

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 5:47pm

Post #116 of 174 (1339 views)
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Yes, I think Saruman believes that the ship will be a sad journey of regret [In reply to] Can't Post

rather than a return to a long lost home. Yes, there will be sadness and certain regrets but the longing to go over the Sea is still the culmination of an Elven life. To stay is to eventually fade.

I am curious about the path home taken by Galadriel and Celeborn - trekking up and over the mountains. The orcs of the Misty Mountains were still present - so the road could be dangerous. Certainly, to enter Moria (I know the western gate was closed) would still lead to orcs. And farther north Goblin town must still exist. The orcs are free to organize or fight amongst themselves as they see fit now. Trolls still exist. Though I don't think they are likely to come across any as the orcs reside inside their holds for the most part. I wonder if they do any raiding at times until maybe finally defeated?

Gimli will lead folk to the Glittering Caves for a new dwarf kingdom. So they will reside immediately behind the Hornburg.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 31 2017, 5:48pm)


enanito
Lorien

Aug 31 2017, 8:04pm

Post #117 of 174 (1318 views)
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Hunting for Balrog wings? [In reply to] Can't Post

Maybe G&C still doubted Gandalf's tall tale about defeating the Balrog and wanted to scout it out on the way back home, and see if they really could find the remains where it was cast down "from the high place and broke the mountain-side".

Plus, the value on the black market for Balrog wings is quite expensive, from what I hear, so if they could just pluck a couple of souvenirs...


(This post was edited by enanito on Aug 31 2017, 8:05pm)


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 31 2017, 8:33pm

Post #118 of 174 (1319 views)
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Even counting fairy tales for a tally of male/female evil opponents can be fraught with discord [In reply to] Can't Post

Do we take the most popular/well-known? Or every one of them that's ever been recorded, no matter how obscure & unknown?

I was mentally scanning through the former: Hansel & Gretel vs Wicked Witch; Dorothy in Wizard of Oz + 1 good witch vs 2 Wicked Witches; the Narnia stories I could remember, and anything else that came to mind. (That's not counting wicked stepmothers, a stock character as in Cinderella. The term "wicked stepfather" really isn't cliche, is it?)

Though I was also joking to some degree. There have always been female rulers in real life history, with the implication that male-dominated societies accepted them as such, even if they didn't want them to become the norm 50% of the time.

And sexist roles affect both genders equally: what if boys don't want to grow up to be swashbuckling warriors but would rather be poets, musicians, or librarians? Don't all these warrior-hero stories make them feel as oppressed as stories preaching that a women's "real place" is raising children and making meals?


CuriousG
Half-elven


Aug 31 2017, 8:45pm

Post #119 of 174 (1316 views)
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Feminine power according to the era [In reply to] Can't Post

Your reference to Gerda's feminine power got me thinking about how each era will have its own standard. She wasn't a 2017 Amazon-fighter type, though she was strong in a Frodo/Sam way of being incredibly loyal and resolute--she never ran home for help or gave up along the way.

What we see now in popular films are "strong women" who fight physically/martially as well as men.

I was thinking of what if we fast forward c. 200 years, and it's much more common than now for women to run countries and corporations at all levels. Then I would think that people in the future would look back at our peculiar female fighters and say, "Why didn't she do what any strong woman would do, and delegate that fight to a champion?" Because that is what kings often did, and it wasn't cowardly. Kings had countries to rule with many diverse responsibilities and couldn't stake everything on a fight, though of course at times they did in legends. So, imagine future heroic women delegating, like any powerful person would rather than doing all the heroic stuff herself. Our contemporary powerful women could seem just as peculiar as a strong but non-violent Gerda.

Just some speculation about how gender roles can change and expectations can change with them.


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 9:27pm

Post #120 of 174 (1307 views)
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Since they can walk on snow it makes the journey less taxing. [In reply to] Can't Post

http://lotr.wikia.com/wiki/Battle_of_the_Peak

It is possible the pass was closed due to the falling mountain.

Then again, they went up there for some path maintenance...clearing the debris....she can move great stones.

Out of the way rock!
http://s3.gatheringmagic.com/.../2016/01/21/MJ_8.jpg


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 31 2017, 9:30pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 9:35pm

Post #121 of 174 (1306 views)
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I was thinking about this side story.....I wish it had been more developed. [In reply to] Can't Post

http://www.theonering.net/...white-council-fails/

Dol Guldur’s destruction. Why Galadriel succeeds where the White Council fails.

APRIL 20, 2013 at 8:23 AM BY DEMOSTHENES -

So, did Galadriel learn the words of power that could undo the fortress or did her ring actually play a role....or just her innate power and a use of magic? Who would have divulged the words of power?


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 31 2017, 9:49pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Aug 31 2017, 11:53pm

Post #122 of 174 (1295 views)
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We also have another scene where telecommunication is directly indicated [In reply to] Can't Post

Gandalf, Galadriel, Elrond, Celeborn etc. sit and without saying anything aloud communicate via mind to mind.


Silverlode
Forum Admin / Moderator


Sep 1 2017, 1:16am

Post #123 of 174 (1295 views)
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He has also lost [In reply to] Can't Post

his daughter, Celebrian, and is losing his granddaughter Arwen, who is the treasure he is hoping Aragorn can keep. It's easy to forget that he, as well as Elrond and Galadriel, is saying goodbye to her forever.

Silverlode

Roads go ever ever on
Under cloud and under star
Yet feet that wandering have gone
Turn at last to home afar.
Eyes that fire and sword have seen
And horror in the halls of stone
Look at last on meadows green
And trees and hills they long have known.




Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 1 2017, 2:43am

Post #124 of 174 (1283 views)
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Ah yes, good points. [In reply to] Can't Post

 


sador
Half-elven


Sep 1 2017, 10:14am

Post #125 of 174 (1259 views)
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Well, if that's what you prefer - [In reply to] Can't Post

You can have a blues extended drum solo:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1dD0Es7ANsU


noWizardme
Valinor


Sep 1 2017, 10:39am

Post #126 of 174 (1847 views)
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I agree with both those points! // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


sador
Half-elven


Sep 1 2017, 10:59am

Post #127 of 174 (1853 views)
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I don't think Tolkien thought of this as an action-focused fantasy [In reply to] Can't Post

I get the impression he was really more interested in the spiritual themes of trial, temptation, and salvation.

But the story has progressed from one focused on the quest Frodo, a fantasy creature who is human but entangled with people and powers far beyond his own size and ability, to a tale of redemption from evil for the world of Men.
This is shown by the title of the third book (when reading Fellowship there is no indication that Aragorn's return would be the main theme of the third book, with the journey to Mount Doom taking a mere three chapters, of which a large part is more sketchy than vivid (there are other reasons for that, of course).

As the story humanizes, the focus is less the larger-than-life returning king, but rather the people of Gondor, the Watchers on the Walls (Tolkien's orginal name for this chapter).
So according to one way of reading, the true hero of RotK is the Common Man, whose long perseverance againt Sauron is finally rewarded. The focal point of these common Men is Faramir, and characters like Beregond and Ioreth are truly important.

But this does not negate the story of Frodo and Sam - in fact, it amplifies it, giving context to their journey beyond a personal adventure.
And so we have two eucatastrophes, in the two chapters after the climax: The Field of Cormallen rewards Frodo and Sam, and The Steward and the King the people of Gondor.
It's a pity that Jackson had to conflate the two, and honour Frodo at the coronation - the effect seems to me like a bunch of foreigners taking over Gondor. But I guess he stretched his limits as is.

And naturally, in the eucatastrophe of Men, we have more than a fight against desperate odds: the true Redemption is the reawakening of normal life - of joy, of healing, of love.


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 1 2017, 3:29pm

Post #128 of 174 (1831 views)
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Things are not well in Bree and the surrounding country. [In reply to] Can't Post

Displaced ruffians have invaded the territory coming up the Greenway....from where? Dunland?
Who are these men?
A void left in the North by the Rangers leaving to fight with Aragorn has been filled by men who have probably had dealings with various agents of Sauron be it Nazgul or other men long corrupted...or Saruman. However, Saruman appears decrepit and poverty stricken yet he is still able to organize such men with his powers of persuasion. As Gandalf states to Butterbur, the Rangers have returned and a new King is now in control. One of the tasks will be to patrol and guard the main roadways for travel and commerce. I imagine new forts will be established, some in the old locations of Arnor as Gandalf indicated.

So much of ME is depopulated. It seems like there are hardly 10-20,000 people in all of old Arnor.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Sep 1 2017, 3:32pm)


CuriousG
Half-elven


Sep 1 2017, 6:50pm

Post #129 of 174 (1816 views)
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The obvious depopulation makes Butterbur's "crowded" concerns seem odd [In reply to] Can't Post

Arnor seems ready to absorb millions, practically, and he's worried they'll pile up at Bree and ruin it somehow. (And that more people = more customers = more business, but then, this isn't a capitalist book.) But maybe that's a reflection of his parochial outlook, that the world revolves around Bree.


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 1 2017, 7:06pm

Post #130 of 174 (1813 views)
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I think they love the commerce, they just don't want folks to stick around and settle [In reply to] Can't Post

....rather provincial but that is what they are...a lone outpost of humanity in the wild with historically dangerous elements all around (not realizing how the Rangers kept them so secure all of these years). I think Butterbur enjoys the coin as much as the next merchant but he likes safety and quiet above all else...rather Hobbit like. It will take many decades before the area can grow in population , his fears are misplaced. It is not like there are hordes of Gondorians and Rohirrim seeking new lands. Possibly more Dwarven trade will be coming through.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Sep 1 2017, 7:08pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 1 2017, 7:14pm

Post #131 of 174 (1808 views)
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When Gandalf goes off to see Tom Bombadil who wouldn't want to eavesdrop on those [In reply to] Can't Post

conversations!

Gandalf: Ho Tom!
Tom: Folly la, diddly da, tis Grey man come a walking, now white, such a fright, to all night things a stalking!
Gandalf: Old friend, the enemy has been defeated, the Ring Frodo showed you has been destroyed.
Tom: Ring, Ring a ding, Ring ding a dillow, silly Ring, such a thing, to waste a fine fellow.
Gandalf: Do you understand what I am saying? The Dark Lord is gone!
Tom: Dark Lord? Hmm, such things I don't ponder, over hill over dale on long walks I wander.
Gandalf: Where is Goldberry for Eru's sake! My pipe, my pipe! Argh.


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 1 2017, 7:46pm

Post #132 of 174 (1805 views)
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It also seems that Gandalf is aware of problems in the Shire far more than the hobbits [In reply to] Can't Post

but he sends them on their way to handle things. He says his time is over for such tasks...really? After all that you can't help finish the job! I know, I know, he considers the hobbits matured, veterans etc and it is their role to sort things out....except that Saruman is behind things. Why wouldn't Gandalf want to take care of his malign efforts as he was or "is" an Istari, though fallen. He was of Gandalf's order and is causing the mess.

Plot wise, I get it, it must be focused on the Hobbits reclaiming the Shire on their own.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Sep 1 2017, 7:48pm)


No One in Particular
Rivendell


Sep 4 2017, 1:42am

Post #133 of 174 (1742 views)
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What constitutes treasure, anyway? [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
his daughter, Celebrian, and is losing his granddaughter Arwen, who is the treasure he is hoping Aragorn can keep. It's easy to forget that he, as well as Elrond and Galadriel, is saying goodbye to her forever.


This was the first thing my mind jumped to in regard to this comment. (At least, after I realized that Arwen was C&G's grand-daughter. That wasn't on my first read through, and I had no clue what he was talking about then.) Smile

While you live, shine
Have no grief at all
Life exists only for a short while
And time demands an end.
Seikilos Epitaph


No One in Particular
Rivendell


Sep 4 2017, 1:47am

Post #134 of 174 (1743 views)
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What to do, what to do... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I wasn't seeing the Valar as being lazy or disengaged - just as being very cautious about intervening. Either they are cautious because they only work on a really big scale, or because they are very aware of intervening in the wrong way. As far as I remember, it's not all that clear how much they know about how Eru's plan is to be brought about. Evidently it can sometimes involve a lot of mayhem and misery, at least in the short term. Perhaps they know that Sauron is 'meant' to be defeated now, or perhaps he's meant to rule for a while and that isn't clear to them until they see how things are going?


Calling all the Elves to Valinor in the Deeps of Time was such a disaster that they are probably insanely hesitant to take any action that could possibly be seen as a direct intervention, or even a vaguely indirect intervention, now for fear of causing more harm than good.

While you live, shine
Have no grief at all
Life exists only for a short while
And time demands an end.
Seikilos Epitaph


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 4 2017, 3:12am

Post #135 of 174 (1735 views)
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Homeward Bound [In reply to] Can't Post

As noted above, things are not well in Bree or the Shire. But the Rangers have returned and the Ruffians will soon be dealt with.

Butterbur and the rest of Bree remain basically blissfully ignorant of the happening "away down south."

Gandalf departs for his long stay with Bombadil. Too bad we don't hear in the distance his voice singing some silly song or his presence (but it would be another side track in the story plot line and would open up too much that Tolklen wanted to remain unanswered). I do wonder if he would pack the RV with Goldberry and visit Treebeard.


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 4 2017, 3:18am

Post #136 of 174 (1738 views)
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The Scouring of the Shire [In reply to] Can't Post

Unfortunately, the War has reached The Shire. I find Tolkien getting far more anachronistic and dare I say allegorical in this chapter. The whole chapter has the feel of his childhood home being marred by coal, mills, iron works etc. Plus an Orwellian Saruman ala 1984 as "The Boss" (which I learned on television program "American Ripper" is actually an Americanism than gradually became more common in British English after 1900. One of the Jack the Ripper letter theories is that his use of "Dear Boss" raises speculation that he was American).


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Sep 4 2017, 3:18am)


squire
Half-elven


Sep 4 2017, 1:08pm

Post #137 of 174 (1706 views)
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That's just boss [In reply to] Can't Post

How interesting that Boss, in its meaning as a political, labor, or social leader, is an Americanism that the British were absorbing into their vocabulary in Tolkien's time. I checked it to see why, and found that the word probably comes from the Dutch 'baas' for Master, which probably entered American English via New Amsterdam and its connection with Caribbean slave plantations. To the British, boss had always meant an ornamental knob or central protrusion, from a French word 'boce'.

So when Lotho Sackville-Baggins (not Saruman) assumes the title of Boss of the Shire, Tolkien is evoking not so much Orwell's totalitarian 'Nineteen Eighty-four' as a set of degraded American images of the factory town, the slave plantation, or the gangsterism of Prohibition. All these are of course anathema to the idyllic rusticity of the Shire that he drew so carefully in the early chapters of the book, thousands of pages before.

There are, of course, additional associations in the Scouring chapters that do seem to refer to the postwar adoption of Labour socialism in Britain, somewhat more in line with Orwell's dystopia. Examples include as the harsh new architecture, the deliberate creation of shortages, and the ideology of 'sharing'. Most readers get that and Tolkien was somewhat defensive about its allegorical implications. His use of Boss, rather hidden to this American reader before now, shows that he really was trying to create a more general picture of the many ways that modern economic structures, as much as political, conspire to crush the spirit. Thanks for the reference!



squire online:
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Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 4 2017, 2:46pm

Post #138 of 174 (1693 views)
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Looking back I see [In reply to] Can't Post

"Chief? Chief? Do you mean Mr. Lotho?...."I suppose so....but we have to just say "the Chief" nowadays.
(Old French chief "leader, ruler, head" of something, )

Lotho is also called "Pimple"

"Worm killed your Chief, poor little fellow, your nice little Boss."

Sharkey....Saruman...."the real boss" behind the scene.

There is a certain gangsterism that seems out of place.


Rembrethil
Tol Eressea


Sep 4 2017, 6:16pm

Post #139 of 174 (1672 views)
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I agree heartily! [In reply to] Can't Post

Very insightful!

To add a bit more:

Reading you post I got to thinking about how far each of the characters has come on their own personal journey. They are definitely not the same people as when they started. I would even dare say that without the experience they have had between their introduction and now, they would never have been able to accomplish their end goals. If Frodo were teleported to the Cracks by page 35 of the book, far from merely being anti-climactic, I say he would have been in a worse position and unable to destroy the Ring at that point.

To quote Aragon: A day draws near that I have looked for in all the years of my manhood, and when it comes I would have my friends beside me

Everything until now has prepared for this moment, and this moment is merely preparation for the next. There is no fast-forward button on Life.

Sing a song of long lament.
The days be past, the years are spent.
The flames of fire, on funeral pyre
The warrior's soul it's wing'd way hath sent.


Rembrethil
Tol Eressea


Sep 4 2017, 6:36pm

Post #140 of 174 (1670 views)
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The gods are men--well mannish. [In reply to] Can't Post

If you care to take a look, I posted my own thoughts on vindication of the Valar earlier on the thread.

Now to address your own post, I would say that, yes, there is definitely a hands-off approach being taken. I attribute this to the fate of Beleriand as a model proof that gods and men/elves/dwarves/ect.. don't play well together on the same stage. This more subtle approach might have been taken as a sort of 'nuclear armistice' to prevent another sinking. I also recall Manwe's indecisiveness concerning the Elven departure because of his respect for the overall plan of Eru. It is interesting to ponder just how bad is 'bad enough' for Valar to take action.

Part of what is interesting to me is that these 'gods' of M-E are not all-powerful, all-wise paragons of divine virtue. The Valar themselves are flawed, and so that might be reason for their reluctance to act. These are humanoid beings with even greater power and potential to do irreparable harm, and I think they are cognisant of that fact. If I were in their shoes, I might be a bit neurotic about why Eru trusted imperfect beings with massive power to deal with a world of other imperfect beings. Fox watching the hen-house type of situation that begs the question of who is watching these watchers. They very well could be having their own internal agony and crisis about what they are supposed to do, knowing that their decisions impact millions.

No pressure...

Sing a song of long lament.
The days be past, the years are spent.
The flames of fire, on funeral pyre
The warrior's soul it's wing'd way hath sent.


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 4 2017, 7:55pm

Post #141 of 174 (1672 views)
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Sharkey....seems a bit out of place [In reply to] Can't Post

"Sharkey (Irish: Ó Searcaigh) is a surname of Irish origin."


squire
Half-elven


Sep 4 2017, 9:03pm

Post #142 of 174 (1672 views)
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What is this "Irish" of which you speak? [In reply to] Can't Post

It is said that the Black Speech was devised by Sauron in the Dark Years, and that he had desired to make it the language of all those that served him, but he failed in that purpose. From the Black Speech, however, were derived many of the words that were in the Third Age wide-spread among the Orcs ... the more debased form [was] used by the soldiers of the Dark Tower, of whom Grishnákh was the captain. Sharku in that tongue means old man. (LotR, Appendix F, Languages; bold by squire)
As usual, Tolkien gets things his own way when it comes to associations between his English 'translation' and the nominal vocabularies of the languages within his world. Long before I finally uncovered the gag at the end of Appendix F, I always associated Sharkey, not with any Irish name, but with the huge and fierce hunting fish that, when it shows up, makes short work of all the lesser fishes of the sea, whether ruffianly predators or terrified prey.



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


= Forum has no new posts. Forum needs no new posts.


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 4 2017, 10:02pm

Post #143 of 174 (1651 views)
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The Irish surname means "loving" so I think we can safely assume no connection! [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 4 2017, 11:32pm

Post #144 of 174 (1643 views)
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The actual Battle of Bywater [In reply to] Can't Post

We are told 70 men killed and 12 taken prisoner with 19 Hobbits killed and 30 wounded. The men were trapped on the roadway by elevated banks and wagons. The Hobbits were armed with a variety practical tools such as axes as well as bows.

http://www.thewhitetree.org/...oad/file.php?id=3016

I have always liked Ted Nasmith's work:

http://tolkiengateway.net/...torming_the_Bank.jpg

Merry killing the leader
https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/...zzVYZTAZJHXsZ2i0SsvQ


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Sep 4 2017, 11:46pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 5 2017, 12:10am

Post #145 of 174 (1633 views)
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I wonder who works the tobacco plantations in the Southfarthing. [In reply to] Can't Post

Do we have great landowner and tenant workers?

The same with the vinyards - very labor intensive.

Both require coopers to make barrels which require lumber and suppliers and storage houses and wagons and draft animals etc. A fairly large economy is required. We learned Lotho had invested heavily is such properties.

We learn that the Shire has a "quick post service" of messengers.

I also note that Pippin identified half-orcs among the men.

More Gangster talk...Edward G Robinson:
"Because if a Boss gives trouble, we can change him. See? And if little folks try to push in where they'er not wanted, we can put them out of mischief. See?" *The use of "see" is so gangster film.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Js6mgxdFLE4[/url

1931.....I wonder how prevalent "see" was in British English.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Sep 5 2017, 12:14am)


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 5 2017, 12:23am

Post #146 of 174 (1629 views)
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More Shire industry [In reply to] Can't Post

"...mills and malthouses, inns, farms, leaf plantations"....plus the jobs that are required to support each. Quite a prosperous little land. Imagine an economy that focused on such Hobbit staples...good food, good drink, and smoke (I wonder if Hobbits were immune to the ill effects of alcohol and tobacco...in an ideal world they would be).
Plus, you have to have people that provided good...furniture, cookware, textiles, and many many other things.


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 5 2017, 7:27pm

Post #147 of 174 (1600 views)
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Saruman repeatedly says that Gandalf uses his tools then discards them... [In reply to] Can't Post

that they are mere players in a long fought strategic game. Yes, Gandalf seeks to support those key individuals in the war and yes he places them in harms way - be it Bilbo, or Frodo etc. but he does not force them. He just realizes that they constitutionally will accept his guidance. Does he discard them? No, but he sets them on an uncertain path.


CuriousG
Half-elven


Sep 5 2017, 8:43pm

Post #148 of 174 (1591 views)
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Saruman's snarky remark about Gandalf [In reply to] Can't Post

I remember on first read how I was disturbed by Saruman's remark about Gandalf, because it seemed uncomfortably true, and I'd spent several hundred pages and a couple of weeks admiring this great wizard who came back from the dead to save his friends and the world. Did he really just use people and toss them aside? That would explain his abrupt departure at the very end--repeat, very end--of their journey home.

He was practically camped out across the street at Bombadil's, singing tra-la-la, go save the Shire yourselves, hobbits, because I'm done helping you and don't need you anymore since Sauron/the Ring are gone.

And yes, I do understand the explanation that the hobbits didn't need him anymore, and in an existential sense, the Shire had a responsibility to grow up and save itself, because it was perfectly capable of doing so, as events proved. Still, Saruman plants a seed of doubt with that observation that can make readers think twice about the virtue of Gandalf, even if it has no effect on the hobbits.


CuriousG
Half-elven


Sep 5 2017, 8:49pm

Post #149 of 174 (1584 views)
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It does help to see the Valar as more human than divine. [In reply to] Can't Post

Then all their dithering and hand-wringing over millenia make more sense, that it's a human emotion, some fear of failure on a world scale based on past epic failures that rivets them in place.

Further, one could speculate that they were traumatized by the destruction of Numenor, even though Tolkien never says so directly, because that gift of land to the Edain backfired worse than inviting the Elves to Aman did and resulted in Papa God wiping out the whole land and most of the Numenorean race, plus bending the world into a sphere. Again, we could expect that wise gods would figure out a way forward, but humans can react to disasters by becoming deliberately isolationist, which they did.


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 5 2017, 8:50pm

Post #150 of 174 (1586 views)
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That demonstrates his power of persuasion even in print! [In reply to] Can't Post

"Still, Saruman plants a seed of doubt with that observation that can make readers think twice about the virtue of Gandalf..."

Because we are affected as readers we can only imagine his powers of oratory that can sway people.


CuriousG
Half-elven


Sep 5 2017, 8:55pm

Post #151 of 174 (2773 views)
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Deceptively pastoral and agrarian [In reply to] Can't Post

Tolkien does require a lot of industry in the background, doesn't he? Yet the Shire in most people's minds is "good-tilled earth," i.e., small family farms lovingly cultivated by happy, virtuous people. In that sense, he's not an altogether honest author in conjuring up a land that doesn't really exist the way he portrays it. But then again, it's a fairy tale, so he can get away with just about anything he wants.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Sep 5 2017, 11:12pm

Post #152 of 174 (2762 views)
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The Fall of Morgoth [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Further, one could speculate that they were traumatized by the destruction of Numenor, even though Tolkien never says so directly, because that gift of land to the Edain backfired worse than inviting the Elves to Aman did and resulted in Papa God wiping out the whole land and most of the Numenorean race, plus bending the world into a sphere. Again, we could expect that wise gods would figure out a way forward, but humans can react to disasters by becoming deliberately isolationist, which they did.


Oh, I place the seed of that even further back to the drowning of Beleriand, especially since the Valar had a direct hand in that, where the (alleged*) Change of the World was brought about by Eru Himself.

* I state alleged because the Change of the World, like the Great Flood of the The Bible makes more sense in the context of Myth than as history or science.

"Who I am is where I stand. Where I stand is where I fall.” -- The Doctor


noWizardme
Valinor


Sep 6 2017, 11:31am

Post #153 of 174 (2728 views)
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Fantasy economics [In reply to] Can't Post

I've always doubted that the Shire could really support its population in the style that we see. I suspect that really there would need to be a lot of stuff being produced in cities or colonies somewhere. But the Shire is a fantasy place, so perhaps we're better off imagining it as magically fertile and productive.

Initially, The Shire is being asset-stripped, a very economic form of destruction.To begin with (as was pointed out last 'official' rad-through) it i almost being treated like a colony of Isengard, to which it exports luxury goods, presumably at advantageous prices. Later I think of the activities of the Europeans in Conrad's Heart of Darkness, or of the worst accusations made against multinationals in extraction industries. But I think it's not important if we can't understand the situation in economic terms. Indeed, we see it all through the eyes of the bemused hobbits, and so perhaps it's better if the new order appears to make no sense!

I think that over time the situation is exacerbated by the corruption, cruelty and incompetence of the ruffians, and of course in the final phase Saruman is no longer concerned by any scheme wider than ruining as much as possible, to spite Frodo and Gandalf.

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm

(This post was edited by noWizardme on Sep 6 2017, 11:32am)


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 6 2017, 1:58pm

Post #154 of 174 (2722 views)
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I wonder where Saruman would have wandered off too if he had not been killed? [In reply to] Can't Post

He could not go west....nothing there for him....elves and dwarves.
He could not go east....Rangers would have caught him.
He could possibly turn south but not much in that direction...he would have to avoid Rohan and Gondor.
He could turn north ....but once again, there is nothing there...ice men?

Maybe he would wander to the far East or South and still try to cause problems. But, without his power, he is very vulnerable.


CuriousG
Half-elven


Sep 6 2017, 7:49pm

Post #155 of 174 (2704 views)
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Fans vs. impartial literary critics [In reply to] Can't Post

I think as fans, despite all the poking around we do, we are ultimately forgiving of any fault. But I suspect a hard-core, impartial literary critic would rip on Tolkien for an unrealistic economy, even if it is a fairy tale.

Good point about the Shire being a tributary to Isengard, itself a tributary to Mordor (though more politically than economically, and of course not as loyally as the Shire/Lotho is). It's never clear to me how the abundant overland commerce & transportation works between the Shire and Isengard, even assuming armed legions protecting caravans of goods. Boromir lost his horse at Tharbad, so how do all these wagons get across? One of those unknown details.


CuriousG
Half-elven


Sep 6 2017, 7:52pm

Post #156 of 174 (2700 views)
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Saruman was truly a lost soul, with nowhere to go [In reply to] Can't Post

It is odd he didn't try to go east when originally released from Isengard. Gandalf mocks him when they encounter him near Dunland, telling Saruman he's going the wrong way if he's trying to escape Aragorn's realm. But maybe that was just a lie by Saruman, and he was headed the only place where he still had a power base left, and that was the Shire.

But once turned from there, and assuming he hadn't been killed, it's hard to see where he would go. Back to a life of hungry begging, maybe eventually eating Grima--sidekicks are good to keep around for that reason.


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 6 2017, 7:55pm

Post #157 of 174 (2700 views)
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Granted, we are just partaking in speculation that Tolkien never had time to actually [In reply to] Can't Post

work out nor do I think he had any inclination to do so. But for us fans, it is simply a way to imagine how things in this so real to us world could operate. It is just fun to consider some of the small points.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Sep 6 2017, 7:55pm)


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 7 2017, 1:24am

Post #158 of 174 (2675 views)
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The Grey Havens [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, here we are, about caught up to the book calendar and at the end of our LOTR read through, not including the Appendices which will be started under a new thread.

Frodo spends his year basically putting his affairs in order and writing. Sam was extremely busy with the supervision of the restoration of the Shire and with the help of Galadriel's gifts - a Mallorn seed and grow dust - the Shire will recover much faster than usual. The Party Tree will be replaced with a magnificent tree (that hopefully will thrive.
Sam, marries and has a child - that was fast! He wasted no time! Merry and Pippin cavort around as Shire lords as they stand out with their increased size and grand dress.
Bilbo passes the Old Took (hmm, I wonder what led to his longevity considering he had no Ring to "unnaturally" extend his life. He seems to have just enjoyed very good longevity genes, as with humans, a tiny few live to advances ages.

The time comes for the journey to The Havens - I think all of us as readers feel this sense of loss too. The reading started and we experienced all of the beauty, wonder, danger with these memorable characters and must say good-bye (once again!).


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 7 2017, 1:32am

Post #159 of 174 (2678 views)
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This has been a very enjoyable read through for me - [In reply to] Can't Post

it has been many years since I read the books cover to cover. I had forgotten certain details and some were colored by film and artistic presentations.

Being once again captured by Tolkien's writing and being sucked into Middle Earth is always a pleasure. You feel the wet grass and mossy stones under foot, the cool waters and smell fragrances in the air, the warmth of hearth with good food and drink plus the cold and dankness of dark, scary places. The sulfurous smells of Gorgoroth and bad B.O. of orcs.

I hope we discovered some unique things for discussion that may have been missed in other read throughs.


noWizardme
Valinor


Sep 7 2017, 2:27pm

Post #160 of 174 (2640 views)
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replying to "Sam, marries and has a child - that was fast!" [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, he was handling Lorien Fertility Dust without using gloves or goggles....

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm

(This post was edited by noWizardme on Sep 7 2017, 2:29pm)


noWizardme
Valinor


Sep 7 2017, 2:28pm

Post #161 of 174 (2634 views)
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I enjoyed it too - thanks for leading! // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


FarFromHome
Valinor


Sep 7 2017, 2:30pm

Post #162 of 174 (2637 views)
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Fantasy economics underpins a lot of English fiction [In reply to] Can't Post

Look at Jane Austen's world - her characters live in a bubble in which the harsh realities of how their income is really being earned is never examined. It's all very well to have "five hundred a year" or whatever it is, but the reality of where the money comes from is never considered. Without the rapacity commerce of the British Empire there would be no money for the civilized lifestyle of the English shires, but you'd hardly know it if you only had the works of Jane Austen to go by. Tolkien seems to be following the same approach, but it's harder for him to get away with it, because although we know the real-world situation that lies behind Jane Austen's world, Middle-earth is different - it appears to be complete in itself, and there's no room in it for the equivalent of the British Empire.

I think the mismatch comes about partly because Tolkien is deliberately playing with historical periods, with the Shire belonging to a much later period than most of the rest of Middle-earth. He tries to fudge it in the appendices by claiming that his "translation" has transformed the original land of the hobbits into something more familiar to his English readers. But in the end we have to just admit that it's a fantasy - although that does make me wonder if in that case Jane Austen was writing fantasy too...

They went in, and Sam shut the door.
But even as he did so, he heard suddenly,
deep and unstilled,
the sigh and murmur of the Sea upon the shores of Middle-earth.
From the unpublished Epilogue to the Lord of the Rings



FarFromHome
Valinor


Sep 7 2017, 2:38pm

Post #163 of 174 (2637 views)
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Totally! [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
Well, he was handling Lorien Fertility Dust...

There are hints that Elanor's elvish beauty owes something to that magical dust as well. And it wasn't just Sam either:
“All the children born or begotten in that year, and there were many, were fair to see and strong, and most of them had a rich golden hair that had before been rare among hobbits.”
It seems like the side-effects of Galadriel's gift were pretty powerful!

Cool


They went in, and Sam shut the door.
But even as he did so, he heard suddenly,
deep and unstilled,
the sigh and murmur of the Sea upon the shores of Middle-earth.
From the unpublished Epilogue to the Lord of the Rings



Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 7 2017, 2:43pm

Post #164 of 174 (2634 views)
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Makes me think of the movie Cocoon [In reply to] Can't Post

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s9BSsIX2j7M


Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 7 2017, 2:55pm

Post #165 of 174 (2631 views)
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A couple of things stand out for me: [In reply to] Can't Post

First, the presence of divine action - very subtle throughout the story.

Second, it was fun keeping track of every instance of Gandalf using magic - innate power. I counted more than I remembered.

Third - seeing where the book source material enters the films at different places and often being said by different characters.


squire
Half-elven


Sep 7 2017, 5:30pm

Post #166 of 174 (2623 views)
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Austen's fiction (and the rest) are built on "unpleasant economics" not "fantasy economics". [In reply to] Can't Post

There's nothing fantastic, in the literal meaning of the term, about the aristocratic socioeconomic structures that underlie so much of European art and literature. As you say, the reality of it may not be examined very closely - in fact, it's usually taken for granted by the writers and by their intended audiences - but that's not the same as the problems we encounter when trying to analyze Tolkien's construction of the Shire. He explicitly rules out the presence of a commercial and industrial metropolis and/or empire as the driver and consumer of the idyllic Shire's agricultural production. He only gets away with it because, well, fantasy.

"News Flash: the genre's called Fantasy. It's meant to be unrealistic, you myopic manatee!" (as ranted by JRRT against George RR Martin in the fabulous Rap Battle video).

One can, of course, debate whether Austen's fiction is "fantasy", in that it scants considerations of economics that even her embubbled characters might, in real life, have paid more attention to. That's the privilege of any author of fiction - no book or other work of art can possibly contain the entirety of life, and what makes it art is the choices made - but I feel that to use the term in direct equation to Tolkien's type of "fantasy" is abusing our critical vocabulary.



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


= Forum has no new posts. Forum needs no new posts.


Ettelewen
Rohan

Sep 7 2017, 6:24pm

Post #167 of 174 (2617 views)
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I liked it too. [In reply to] Can't Post

Granted I only lurked, but I really enjoyed the informal approach this time through. Thanks!


FarFromHome
Valinor


Sep 7 2017, 7:48pm

Post #168 of 174 (2612 views)
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I was pretty sure... [In reply to] Can't Post

... you wouldn't let me get away with my argument! ;)

I wasn't being serious, of course, when I said Jane Austen was "fantasy", just pointing out that there's not as big a gap between "realism" and "fantasy" as might at first appear. Even in novels set in the real world, many details of the real world itself may remain outside the story. I agree though that Tolkien's world appears to be too fully described to leave room for the kind of economic underpinnings that the Shire would need in order to exist as it does. Still, I'm not sure Tolkien "explicitly rules out" such things, as you claim. I'm always a bit uncomfortable with the way some readers want to build up everything in his stories into a fully integrated world, without taking into account the many gaps in the knowledge of the hobbit sources of the stories. Of course there isn't room in the story for the kind of "commercial and industrial metropolis and/or empire" that you feel would be necessary to explain the hobbits' way of life (although even pre-industrial revolution there were relatively prosperous periods in England, at least for the kinds of middle-class folk that we mostly meet in the Shire). But there is enough vagueness, I think, to encourage the reader not to care about such things in the first place (just as we don't care to question whether Mr Darcy's fortune comes from child labour or the slave trade).

They went in, and Sam shut the door.
But even as he did so, he heard suddenly,
deep and unstilled,
the sigh and murmur of the Sea upon the shores of Middle-earth.
From the unpublished Epilogue to the Lord of the Rings



Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 7 2017, 7:53pm

Post #169 of 174 (2609 views)
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A real world ancient example may shed some light on the possibilities [In reply to] Can't Post

http://www.reshafim.org.il/...t/economy/index.html
The ancient Egyptian economy

Not the same in the state control but in the types of manufacture.

Greece...an import based economy
https://en.wikipedia.org/...my_of_ancient_Greece


FarFromHome
Valinor


Sep 7 2017, 8:03pm

Post #170 of 174 (2605 views)
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What's in a name? [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
I always associated Sharkey, not with any Irish name, but with the huge and fierce hunting fish that, when it shows up, makes short work of all the lesser fishes of the sea

I would guess that's exactly what Tolkien wanted you to think, just as he wants you to think of the properties of cotton and the cotton-wool dressing called "gamgee" when you read the surnames Cotton and Gamgee (although Tolkien explains in the Appendices that the names have nothing to do with those substances really). So many of his names (Proudfoot, Baggins etc.) are real surnames that also contain images that work for us modern readers even if their original owners would not have understood them in the same way. Indeed it's not clear how the idea of sharks would have any resonance for orcs who presumably know nothing of the sea. But it has a resonance for us, as Tolkien well knew!


They went in, and Sam shut the door.
But even as he did so, he heard suddenly,
deep and unstilled,
the sigh and murmur of the Sea upon the shores of Middle-earth.
From the unpublished Epilogue to the Lord of the Rings



Eruonen
Valinor


Sep 7 2017, 8:21pm

Post #171 of 174 (2601 views)
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This goes back to elements being a bit off if he wanted to create a mythology for England. [In reply to] Can't Post

Cotton of course is not a crop of England as it is a warm weather plant. I think more of wool, leather, flax etc. The same for tobacco being a new world product. So, we have these anachronisms. They were important for his Shire world to represent the ideal English county / village life that he so cherished even if it was reflected a 17-19 th century version in a world set in an otherwise earlier age.

It is more of a two part mythology...ancient and early modern.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Sep 7 2017, 8:21pm)


CuriousG
Half-elven


Sep 9 2017, 7:02am

Post #172 of 174 (2524 views)
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Thanks for leading us through Middle-earth again, Eru! // [In reply to] Can't Post

 


sador
Half-elven


Sep 10 2017, 9:06pm

Post #173 of 174 (2493 views)
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"A district of well-ordered business". [In reply to] Can't Post

I think squire is right - even if when reading just the book, one could "get away" with your argument.

But once you read Concerning Hobbits in the Prologue, it falls down:


Quote
...in that pleasant corner of the world they plied their well-ordered business of living, and they heeded less and less the world outside where dark things moved, until they came to think that peace and plenty were the rule in Middle-earth and the right of all sensible folk.


That is nothing like Impreial England; in fact, it seems to strike nearer home.


sador
Half-elven


Sep 10 2017, 9:08pm

Post #174 of 174 (2490 views)
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Thank you, Euronen! [In reply to] Can't Post

My participation has been erratic, and often I have only read your posts long after discussion about them was over; but it was both illuminating and greatly enjoyable.

 
 

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