Jun 30 2020, 11:14am
Today in Middle-earth
TIME - June 30
1 Lithe, 2941 (S.R. 1341) Midsummer's Eve
1. Bilbo, Gandalf and the Dwarves reach the end of their stay in Rivendell.
(determined from text)
...""They stayed long in that good house, fourteen days at least, and they found it hard to leave. Bilbo would gladly have stopped there for ever and ever—even supposing a wish could have taken him right back to his hobbit-hole without trouble....
......The master of the house was an elf-friend... ...He comes into many tales, but his part in the story of Bilbo's great adventure is only a small one, though important... ...His house was perfect, whether you liked food, or sleep, or work, or story-telling or singing, or just sitting and thinking best, or a pleasant mixture of them all. Evil things did not come into that valley....
......All of them, the ponies as well, grew refreshed and strong in a few days there. Their clothes were mended as well as their bruises, their tempers and their hopes. Their bags were filled with food and provisions light to carry but strong to bring them over the mountain passes. Their plans were improved with the best advice.""
2. Elrond examines the swords of Thorin and Gandalf, and Thorin's map.
(from Karen Wynn Fonstad, The Atlas of Middle-earth)
..."So the time came to midsummer eve, and they were to go on again with the early sun on midsummer morning.
...Elrond knew all about runes of every kind. That day he looked at the swords they had brought from the trolls' lair... "...These are not troll-make. They are old swords, very old swords of the High Elves of the West, my kin. They were made in Gondolin for the Goblin-wars. They must have come from a dragon's hoard or goblin plunder, for dragons and goblins destroyed that city many ages ago. This, Thorin, the runes name Orcrist, the Goblin-cleaver in the ancient tongue of Gondolin… …This, Gandalf, was Glamdring, Foe-hammer that the king of Gondolin once wore. Keep them well!"
..."Whence did the trolls get them, I wonder?" said Thorin looking at his sword with new interest.
..."I could not say," said Elrond, "but one may guess that your trolls had plundered other plunderers, or come on the remnants of old robberies in some hold in the mountains of the North. I have heard that there are still forgotten treasures of old to be found in the deserted caverns of the mines of Moria, since the dwarf and goblin war...."
..."...I will keep this sword in honour," [Thorin] said. "May it soon cleave goblins once again!"
..."A wish that is likely to be granted soon enough in the mountains!" said Elrond. "But show me now your map!""
..."He took it and gazed long at it, and he shook his head for if he did not altogether approve of dwarves and their love of gold, he hated the dragons and their cruel wickedness… …he grieved to remember the ruin of the town of Dale and its merry bells, and the burned banks of the bright River Running. The moon was shining in a broad silver crescent. He held up the map and the white light shone through it. "What is this?" he said. "There are moon-letters here, beside the plain runes which say 'five feet high the door and three may walk abreast.'"
..."What are moon-letters?" asked the hobbit full of excitement. He loved maps... ...and he also liked runes and letters and cunning handwriting, though when he wrote himself it was a bit thin and spidery.
..."Moon-letters are rune-letters, but you cannot see them," said Elrond, "not when you look straight at them. They can only be seen when the moon shines behind them, and… …with the more cunning sort it must be a moon of the same shape and season as the day when they were written. The dwarves invented them and wrote them with silver pens... ...These must have been written on a midsummer's eve in a crescent moon, a long while ago."
..."What do they say?" asked Gandalf and Thorin together, a bit vexed perhaps that even Elrond should have found this out first, though really there had not been a chance before, and there would not have been another until goodness knows when.
..."Stand by the grey stone when the thrush knocks… …and the setting sun with the last light of Durin's Day will shine upon the key-hole."
..."Durin, Durin!" said Thorin. "He was the father of the fathers of the eldest race of Dwarves, the Longbeards, and my first ancestor: I am his heir."
..."Then what is Durin's Day?" asked Elrond.
..."The first day of the dwarves' New Year," said Thorin, "is as all should know the first day of the last moon of Autumn on the threshold of Winter. We still call it Durin's Day when the last moon of Autumn and the sun are in the sky together. But this will not help us much... ...for it passes our skill in these days to guess when such a time will come again."
..."That remains to be seen," said Gandalf. "Is there any more writing?"
..."None to be seen by this moon," said Elrond, and he gave the map back to Thorin; and then they went down to the water to see the elves dance and sing upon the midsummer's eve."
1 Lithe, 3019 (S.R. 1419) Midsummer's Eve
1. Arwen comes to the City.
(from the appendices)
..."Upon the very Eve of Midsummer, when the sky was blue as sapphire and white stars opened in the East, but the West was still golden, and the air was cool and fragrant, the riders came down the North-way to the gates of Minas Tirith. First rode Elrohir and Elladan with a banner of silver... ...then came Glorfindel and Erestor and all the household of Rivendell, and after them came the Lady Galadriel and Celeborn, Lord of Lothlórien… …and with them many fair folk of their land, grey-cloaked with white gems in their hair; and last came Master Elrond, mighty among Elves and Men, bearing the sceptre of Annúminas, and beside him upon a grey palfrey rode Arwen his daughter, Evenstar of her people."
..."And Frodo when he saw her come glimmering in the evening, with stars on her brow and a sweet fragrance about her, was moved with great wonder… …he said to Gandalf: 'At last I understand why we have waited! This is the ending. Now not day only shall be beloved, but night too shall be beautiful and blessed and all its fear pass away!'"
We have been there and back again.
“Courage is not having the strength to go on; it is going on when you don't have the strength." – Theodore Roosevelt
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