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Sea-longing- a personal Tolkien thing?

noWizardme
Half-elven


Feb 21 2013, 10:58pm


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Sea-longing- a personal Tolkien thing? [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm thinking of the allegory Tolkien has in his essay about the critics of Beowulf and their failure to appreciate it as a thing in itself.

Quote
I would express the whole industry in yet another allegory. A man inherited a field in which was an accumulation of old stone, part of an older hall. Of the old stone some had already been used in building the house in which he actually lived, not far from the old house of his fathers. Of the rest he took some and built a tower. But his friends coming perceived at once (without troubling to climb the steps) that these stones had formerly belonged to a more ancient building. So they pushed the tower over, with no little labour, in order to look for hidden carvings and inscriptions, or to discover whence the man’s distant forefathers had obtained their building material. Some suspecting a deposit of coal under the soil began to dig for it, and forgot even the stones. They all said: ‘This tower is most interesting.’ But they also said (after pushing it over): ‘What a muddle it is in!’ And even the man’s own descendants, who might have been expected to consider what he had been about, were heard to murmur: ‘He is such an odd fellow! Imagine his using these old stones just to build a nonsensical tower! Why did he not restore the old house? He had no sense of proportion.’ But from the top of that tower the man had been able to look out upon the sea.

I love the last line of that: it works poetically, though begs the question why one would want to see the sea so much, and why that image as the contrast to all the scholarly analysis? Was te sea of some personal significance to Tolkien, perhaps?

Disclaimers: The words of noWizardme may stand on their heads! I'm often wrong about things, and its fun to be taught more....
Feel free to meddle in the affairs of noWizardMe by agreeing or disagreeing (politely...) with my posts! I may not be subtle, but at least I'm usually slow to anger...

Subject User Time
*Silmarillion Discussion: Chapter 5, "Of Eldamar and the Princes of the Eldalie", Part 1 -- Who Goes and Who Stays* weaver Send a private message to weaver Feb 21 2013, 6:03am
    Weaver! sador Send a private message to sador Feb 21 2013, 12:46pm
    Long journeys on a muddy boat elevorn Send a private message to elevorn Feb 21 2013, 7:40pm
        Sea-longing- a personal Tolkien thing? noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Feb 21 2013, 10:58pm
            Maybe an early childhood experience FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Feb 22 2013, 10:48am
                I agree elaen32 Send a private message to elaen32 Feb 22 2013, 12:22pm
                    About the gulls FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Feb 22 2013, 2:31pm
                    And welcome to the Reading Room! FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Feb 22 2013, 3:15pm
                        Thanks for the welcome elaen32 Send a private message to elaen32 Feb 22 2013, 6:47pm
    Passage and memory, hope and regret, duty and love. squire Send a private message to squire Feb 22 2013, 3:36pm
        Alas for the wailing of the gulls... FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Feb 22 2013, 5:05pm
            'In Eressea, in Elvenhome that no man can discover, Where the leaves fall not: land of my people for ever!' squire Send a private message to squire Feb 22 2013, 8:08pm
    Home sweet home CuriousG Send a private message to CuriousG Feb 23 2013, 11:29pm
        Mmm, tuna... FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Feb 24 2013, 5:12pm
    Quick answers - part II sador Send a private message to sador Feb 26 2013, 2:56pm
    Sorry I'm so late to the party Finwe Send a private message to Finwe Feb 27 2013, 7:38pm
        Good observation CuriousG Send a private message to CuriousG Feb 27 2013, 7:52pm
            Perhaps even Finwe Send a private message to Finwe Feb 28 2013, 2:17pm
    a few thoughts telain Send a private message to telain Feb 27 2013, 8:03pm

 
 
 

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