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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Reading Room:
After a long delay.


Feb 17 2013, 2:55pm

Views: 757
After a long delay. [In reply to] Can't Post

1.) How do people feel about Tolkienís re-use of the basic scene?
Apparently he attached great importance to it - the whole concept of being captured by elves is often re-worked.
This scene is less subtle but more powerful than those in The Sea-Bell, Smith of Wootton-Major and in The Hobbit. I think the Lothlorien sequence is essentially the same; and perhaps the best of all is The Last Ship - because Firiel is able to reject the call.

Does putative overuse give the later scenes a weary air of ďhere we go againĒ?
Perhaps, had I read them all in a row, it would. But how many authors don't have their recurring images?

Granted, when Tolkien published the LotR, there was little chance of the Silmarillion ever being published, so App. A (v) was the first published version of the scene.
Arguably, Aragorn's description of Beren meeting Luthien preceded it, and even built upon it.

2.) The scene is based on something from Tolkienís own life when Mrs. Tolkien (they were married at the time, so it was okay) danced for him beneath some trees in a moonlit glade. (I donít have the edition of Tolkienís letters with me, but if memory serves, he refers to this in one of his letters.)

John Garth indentifies the place as Roos at Holderness, while he was on his long covalescing period.

The episode clearly made a deep impression on him. Does knowing of the personal episode increase the sceneís ability to charm?
Well, it reads like something he felt keenly. The knowledge only affirms this.

Was this why he used and re-used it?
Most probably.

3.) How is this supposed to work? None of the other Valar/Maiar ever begets children.
Well, in The Book of Long Tales (in which the Tinwelint-Gwendolin lovestory generated) they did. And Morgoth lusted after Luthien.
I guess that being as the Children of Iluvatar does that to Ainur.

4.) Given that Melian is a higher-order being than Thingol, it is clear what he saw in her. But what did Melian see in Thingol?

Tolkien's description of him is pretty impressive.

Why did she enter into this union?
We know many of the Ainur loved the Children.

Do we know enough about her character to have any idea?
No; but I'm not sure she knew what this love involved.

If not, is this a blemish on the plot since her act appears inexplicable and unmotivated?
No; it makes it the more mysterious.
Of all the reworkings, Arwen's love for Aragorn is the best explained.

Subject User Time
Silmarillion Discussion: Of Thingol and Melian NZ Strider Send a private message to NZ Strider Feb 11 2013, 12:43am
    Everything that happens in Arda IdrilofGondolin Send a private message to IdrilofGondolin Feb 11 2013, 7:59pm
        The "take it or leave it" chapter noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Feb 11 2013, 9:35pm
    Time is a circle... telain Send a private message to telain Feb 12 2013, 4:37pm
    Of immortal marriages CuriousG Send a private message to CuriousG Feb 13 2013, 7:53pm
    After a long delay. sador Send a private message to sador Feb 17 2013, 2:55pm
    It is a bittersweet letter. dernwyn Send a private message to dernwyn Feb 24 2013, 2:41am


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