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The Return Journey II: The Grim Business of War
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dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jul 21 2009, 1:09am

Post #1 of 32 (423 views)
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The Return Journey II: The Grim Business of War Can't Post

For the third time in this story, Bilbo awakens after a swoon. (Can you name the other two times?)

"Now I wonder what has happened?" he said to himself. "At any rate I am not yet one of the fallen heroes; but I suppose there is still time enough for that!"
- A pessimistic thought, or is Bilbo just putting a realistic face on the possibility that the conflict is still going on?

Bilbo's thoughts, when he awakens, remind me of Sam's when he witnessed his first battle in Ithilien, and "did not like it much".

...But all was deadly still. There was no call and no echo of a song. Sorrow seemed to be in the air.
"Victory after all, I suppose!" he said, feeling his aching head. "Well, it seems a very gloomy business."

- Deadly still, indeed; neither side has songs to sing now. What might Bilbo have expected to see, if the goblins and wargs had won the battle?

"The Eagles had long had suspicion of the goblins' mustering; from their watchfulness the movements in the mountains could not be altogether hid. So they too had gathered in great numbers, under the great Eagle of the Misty Mountains; and at length smelling battle from afar they had come speeding down the gale in the nick of time."
- If these Eagles were so watchful, then why did they not follow behind as the goblin army made its way south from Mt. Gundabad, and attack the goblins before they reached the Lonely Mountain?

"Victory had been assured before the fall of night, but the pursuit was still on foot, when Bilbo returned to the camp; and not many were in the valley save the more grievously wounded."
- Who was pursuing whom, and how long did the pursuit(s) last?
- How does one deal with the dead carcasses in the River?

"All that had happened after he was stunned, Bilbo learned later; but it gave him more sorrow than joy, and he was now weary of his adventure."
- Do you remember how you felt the first time you read the book, when you found that main characters had died in the battle?
- Was Beorn's appearance logical, or a deus ex machina?
- How did you feel when you read about Beorn gently carrying Thorin out of the battle? What does this say about the relationship between those two?

"Of the twelve companions of Thorin, ten remained. Fili and Kili had fallen defending him with shield and body, for he was their mother's elder brother."
- Here we have one of Tolkien's biggest changes in the text! In the original finished manuscript, the one which was passed around to be read by friends, only Thorin died. As Tolkien prepared the text for publication, he killed off Fili and Kili! Whatever made him do that?

"The elf-host was on the march; and if it was sadly lessened, yet many were glad, for now the northern world would be merrier for many a long day. The dragon was dead, and the goblins overthrown, and their hearts looked forward after winter to a spring of joy."

And so the healing begins. The original readers had no idea, of course, about the Halls of Mandos; with that in mind, does it make sense for these Elves to seem "glad" rather than "relieved", or is this Tokien unconsciously bringing his mythology into the story?


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915



sador
Half-elven

Jul 21 2009, 10:25am

Post #2 of 32 (231 views)
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A few answers [In reply to] Can't Post

For the third time in this story, Bilbo awakens after a swoon. (Can you name the other two times?)
I suppose you mean:
1) At the beginning of 'Riddles in the Dark' after the goblins grabbed Dori and made him drop Bilbo, and
2) In 'Flies and Spiders' after the elves escape and the spiders nab the dwarves.
But then, why don't you mention also the second time, when only Bilbo fell asleep?
No, I have it; after killing the first spider! So that is the second time.

I suppose you weren't thinking of his comic collapse in his own living-room in the first chapter!

A pessimistic thought, or is Bilbo just putting a realistic face on the possibility that the conflict is still going on?
Neither; he thinks the goblins might have won, but somehow not seen him. I suppose he does remember he is wearing the ring, but only when the messenger is looking for him he realises that friends might miss him like foes do.

Deadly still, indeed; neither side has songs to sing now. What might Bilbo have expected to see, if the goblins and wargs had won the battle?
Goblins are loud; and they would be probably making another of their jolly songs:

Quote
Fifteen men on a dead man's chest
Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
Drink and the devil had done for the rest...



If these Eagles were so watchful, then why did they not follow behind as the goblin army made its way south from Mt. Gundabad, and attack the goblins before they reached the Lonely Mountain?
Would they dare get to the Grey Mountains? Apart of goblins, there are dragons in that area, too.
And before you start singing the praises of the Great Eagles - please remember that they wouldn't even bring Gandalf and his friends anywhere near the dwellings of Men!

Who was pursuing whom, and how long did the pursuit(s) last?
Those who were hoping for spoils, until they realised there's nothing to find.

How does one deal with the dead carcasses in the River?

They are an excellent fertilizer! Just in time before winter!

Do you remember how you felt the first time you read the book, when you found that main characters had died in the battle?
No.

Was Beorn's appearance logical, or a deus ex machina?
A deus ex machina; I never quite liked it.

How did you feel when you read about Beorn gently carrying Thorin out of the battle?
I never thought dwarves were so brittle!

What does this say about the relationship between those two?
I don't think it says much; but Beorn and Thorin seem to have a few common characteristics.
Just think what would have happened if Bilbo stole one of Beorn's ponies, and gave it to horse-dealers for bartering!

Here we have one of Tolkien's biggest changes in the text! In the original finished manuscript, the one which was passed around to be read by friends, only Thorin died. As Tolkien prepared the text for publication, he killed off Fili and Kili! Whatever made him do that?
It makes it more of the dwarves' story, rather than having them as Thorin Oakenshield and the Twelve (other) Dwarves.
Which leads me to think - with the Arkenstone on his breast, was Thorin also buried in a glass coffin?

Also, if nothing else, this prevents disputes or questions of inheritance between Kili and Dain.

And so the healing begins. The original readers had no idea, of course, about the Halls of Mandos; with that in mind, does it make sense for these Elves to seem "glad" rather than "relieved", or is this Tokien unconsciously bringing his mythology into the story?
No, I don't see any need for that. Victory and relief is reason enough for joy.

And any sort of afterlife in which the righteous are rewarded would do; there is no need to presuppose any halls of Mandos.


"We will honour the agreement of the dead." - Dain.


Curious
Half-elven


Jul 21 2009, 11:24am

Post #3 of 32 (201 views)
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Thoughts. [In reply to] Can't Post

For the third time in this story, Bilbo awakens after a swoon. (Can you name the other two times?)

I'll go with sador's answers.

A pessimistic thought [still time to be a fallen hero], or is Bilbo just putting a realistic face on the possibility that the conflict is still going on?

Wry humor, rather than pessimism. There's no immediate threat.

What might Bilbo have expected to see, if the goblins and wargs had won the battle?

Probably less gloom and more evil joy.

"The Eagles had long had suspicion of the goblins' mustering; from their watchfulness the movements in the mountains could not be altogether hid. So they too had gathered in great numbers, under the great Eagle of the Misty Mountains; and at length smelling battle from afar they had come speeding down the gale in the nick of time."
- If these Eagles were so watchful, then why did they not follow behind as the goblin army made its way south from Mt. Gundabad, and attack the goblins before they reached the Lonely Mountain?


I think they did follow the goblins, since they came "speeding down the gale." But they weren't numerous enough to attack the goblins by themselves. They waited to join in a general battle. But my goodness, they must have a keen sense of smell. Unless that's a metaphor. I think it's more likely that they would see the battle from afar, or that one of their scouts would.

"Victory had been assured before the fall of night, but the pursuit was still on foot, when Bilbo returned to the camp; and not many were in the valley save the more grievously wounded."
- Who was pursuing whom, and how long did the pursuit(s) last?


The winners were pursuing the losers. Pursuit is very important; otherwise the losers can regroup and counterattack, either immediately or a month or a year later. And the pursuer has a great strategic advantage which veteran armies do not take for granted.

- How does one deal with the dead carcasses in the River?

Pick them up and carry them well away from the water.

- Do you remember how you felt the first time you read the book, when you found that main characters had died in the battle?

For years, I barely noticed that Fili and Kili had died. It's such a throwaway line. It makes sense that it was a late addition to the text. I think more should have been made of it.

As for Thorin, his death is less sad because of his previous behavior. Like Boromir, he seems to be paying for his sins. Of course, his defenders may wonder what sins, but I never questioned the Author's judgment.

- Was Beorn's appearance logical, or a deus ex machina?

Well, it isn't totally out of the blue. We've had hints that the news was carried far and wide, and others have shown up from afar, including Gandalf and Dain and the goblins and the eagles. Why not Beorn? Furthermore, it wasn't really necessary to bring Beorn into it. This isn't Frodo and Sam surrounded by lava; this is a close battle which easily could have gone the right way without Beorn's appearance. So no, I don't see it as deus ex machina.

- How did you feel when you read about Beorn gently carrying Thorin out of the battle? What does this say about the relationship between those two?

It's unrealistic, to say the least. I didn't notice much of a relationship, and one would think there are other wounded soldiers Beorn could carry out of battle. It's a romantic touch, and it shows that Beorn is not just a berserker who can't distinguish friends from foes, but I'm not sure I buy it. Fight the battle, then tend to the wounded.

"Of the twelve companions of Thorin, ten remained. Fili and Kili had fallen defending him with shield and body, for he was their mother's elder brother."
- Here we have one of Tolkien's biggest changes in the text! In the original finished manuscript, the one which was passed around to be read by friends, only Thorin died. As Tolkien prepared the text for publication, he killed off Fili and Kili! Whatever made him do that?


I suppose he wanted to make the story more realistic at this point, because it had evolved into that kind of a tale. Because we never really got to know the dwarves like we did Bilbo, it doesn't have a huge impact on the reader. Indeed for years I forgot that they died at all. I think the movie may make more of it, and may set it up by giving Fili and Kili more time on screen.

The original readers had no idea, of course, about the Halls of Mandos; with that in mind, does it make sense for these Elves to seem "glad" rather than "relieved", or is this Tokien unconsciously bringing his mythology into the story?

I don't think it's necessary to explain the Elvish afterlife. This is a typical victorious army, sad about their losses but joyful about their victory.



(This post was edited by Curious on Jul 21 2009, 11:29am)


Morthoron
Gondor


Jul 21 2009, 1:07pm

Post #4 of 32 (200 views)
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Presumably... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
"Of the twelve companions of Thorin, ten remained. Fili and Kili had fallen defending him with shield and body, for he was their mother's elder brother."
- Here we have one of Tolkien's biggest changes in the text! In the original finished manuscript, the one which was passed around to be read by friends, only Thorin died. As Tolkien prepared the text for publication, he killed off Fili and Kili! Whatever made him do that?



The deaths of Fili and Kili make more sense when one considers that Dain Ironfoot became King Under the Mountain. Dain, being Thorin's second-cousin, would not be in direct line of ascendance for the throne of Erebor if Fili and Kili survived, as they were Thorin's nephews. And having twins as direct royal heirs has presented problems in previous literary endeavors, Alexandre Dumas' "The Vicomte de Bragelonne", the third in the 'Three Musketeers' series, as a prime example (the 'Man in the Iron Mask' is the famous last section of that novel).

Two novel-length stories nominated for 2009 MEFAs--

MONTY PYTHON'S 'The HOBBIT':
http://www.fanfiction.net/...y_Pythons_The_Hobbit

-And-

'TALES OF A DARK CONTINENT':
http://www.fanfiction.net/..._of_a_Dark_Continent


Curious
Half-elven


Jul 21 2009, 1:53pm

Post #5 of 32 (199 views)
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Good point!// [In reply to] Can't Post

 


dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jul 21 2009, 4:42pm

Post #6 of 32 (185 views)
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Interesting thought! [In reply to] Can't Post

Dain would not have been able to claim that throne, only hold it until the elder brother came of age...and then, you would have an unexperienced youngster as King over his far wiser relatives.

And yet Tolkien made Dain King, even when the two survived - perhaps Dwarf "royalty" has different rules of ascendancy?


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915



sador
Half-elven

Jul 21 2009, 5:22pm

Post #7 of 32 (182 views)
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It could be like in Gondor, or pre-Eldarion Numenor [In reply to] Can't Post

Descent in the male line only.
But Tolkien came up with a more convinient solution.

"We will honour the agreement of the dead." - Dain.


(This post was edited by sador on Jul 21 2009, 5:24pm)


Dreamdeer
Valinor


Jul 21 2009, 6:08pm

Post #8 of 32 (186 views)
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Beorn Ex Machina [In reply to] Can't Post

Beorn's presence harkens back to that other Beorn in Hrolf Kraki's saga. Hrolf's half-brother, Beorn, experienced rejection and suspicion for being a were-bear, until he saved the day by suddenly showing up in the middle of the battle in bear-form.

Notice that before this Beorn lives apart from humankind, with only animals for companions. After this he throws a big Yule party to which men gather from miles around, and he becomes their leader, and founds a dynasty.

As to how he got there so fast, I suspect that he was in on the assault on Dol Guldur, which means that he could get to the Lonely Mountain as fast as Gandalf, maybe faster. It seems to me like the most likely event that could change his status among humankind in his own region, far more than a battle over a distant mountain. The folks between Mirkwood and the Misty Mountains would experience a direct improvement with the Necromancer's fall, but not really care what went on over on the other side of a nearly impassible forest.

Life is beautiful and dangerous! Beware! Enjoy!


Dreamdeer
Valinor


Jul 21 2009, 6:10pm

Post #9 of 32 (181 views)
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Beorn and Thorin [In reply to] Can't Post

Maybe it's a chick thing, but I liked Beorn tenderly removing Thorin from the battle. I think at this point that Thorin is more of a symbol for Beorn than an intimate, that he's the first dwarf that Beorn had ever befriended--maybe the first humanoid creature that he'd befriended in a long time.

Life is beautiful and dangerous! Beware! Enjoy!


batik
Tol Eressea


Jul 22 2009, 2:43am

Post #10 of 32 (171 views)
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lost this post twice :( [In reply to] Can't Post

- A pessimistic thought, or is Bilbo just putting a realistic face on the possibility that the conflict is still going on?
Or just the rambling thoughts of one who was KO'ed and is trying to get his bearings?

- Deadly still, indeed; neither side has songs to sing now. What might Bilbo have expected to see, if the goblins and wargs had won the battle?
Goblins gathering trophies; bats, wargs and wolves feasting. Ugh. Not pretty.War...

Quote
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
War
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing



- If these Eagles were so watchful, then why did they not follow behind as the goblin army made its way south from Mt. Gundabad, and attack the goblins before they reached the Lonely Mountain?
Strategy? Makes sense that they'd wait until the enemy were hemmed in...concentrated attack...better chance of a favourable outcome.
- Who was pursuing whom, and how long did the pursuit(s) last?
"They". And "...three parts of the goblin warriors of the North perished on that day." (emphasis, mine) Don't ya just love a vague "they"? I assume any man, dwarf, or elf so inclined joined in the chase for 24 hours of so?
- How does one deal with the dead carcasses in the River?
I don't know but I wouldn't care for that assignment!

- Do you remember how you felt the first time you read the book, when you found that main characters had died in the battle?
Sad. Still sad.
- Was Beorn's appearance logical, or a deus ex machina?
Makes sense to me that a being who earlier raced off to the mountains to check of the situation and came back with a couple of trophies himself would show up here.
- How did you feel when you read about Beorn gently carrying Thorin out of the battle? What does this say about the relationship between those two?
Very Tolkien. I was skimming through TS yesterday and read something similar to this. I like that Tolkien allows for an out-of-the-battle moment to present a (however unlikely) moment of this-is-what-I'd-do-if-I-could.

- Here we have one of Tolkien's biggest changes in the text! In the original finished manuscript, the one which was passed around to be read by friends, only Thorin died. As Tolkien prepared the text for publication, he killed off Fili and Kili! Whatever made him do that?
A bit of reality? How likely is it that only Thorin would fall? That none of the others in the company would have been right there with him and met the same end?

And so the healing begins. The original readers had no idea, of course, about the Halls of Mandos; with that in mind, does it make sense for these Elves to seem "glad" rather than "relieved", or is this Tokien unconsciously bringing his mythology into the story?

Yes? This is an awkward bit of phrasing for me. I take it to mean that the elves are sad to have lost some kin but do appreciate some better days ahead. (short term thinking?)


Quote

Life! we’ve been long together,

Through pleasant and through cloudy weather;

’Tis hard to part when friends are dear;

Perhaps ’t will cost a sigh, a tear;

Then steal away, give little warning,

Choose thine own time;

Say not Good night, but in some brighter clime


Bid me Good morning






dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jul 22 2009, 2:47am

Post #11 of 32 (168 views)
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Dark times [In reply to] Can't Post

The blackouts! I think the ones which happened when they tried to crash the Elves' feasting were more "spells" than swoons caused by injury or over-exertion. And no, I didn't consider the one in his own parlor, which was more of a freak-out than an extended lack of consciousness! Laugh

Yecch, I think you're right, goblins would have rather, ah, appropriate songs for the occasion...as they made mincemeat of the fallen...

No, no overt praises for the Eagles, I am annoyed with them for not showing up a bit sooner as the Mountain was approached - you'd think that on wing, they could travel faster than Wargs!

Carcasses as fertilizer? Uh, I was thinking more of downstream pollution...

Brittle Dwarves! More like brittle armor...Beorn may have trying to make sure he wasn't injured further in the act of being rescued.

The Arkenstone: the implication is that no one will ever again be able to see it, since it is buried "deep beneath the Mountain" with Thorin - and hence, it will no longer tempt anyone!


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915



dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jul 22 2009, 2:58am

Post #12 of 32 (162 views)
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Hobbitry in heart [In reply to] Can't Post

Bilbo's wry humor: we see once again that Hobbity cheerfulness in a tough situation!

Good point about the Eagles' sense of smell: it must be more a figure of speech, since we know that their eyesight is their best sense.

Interesting point about that one sentence about Fili and Kili's death being a "throwaway line": it does tend to make their loss seem unimportant, doesn't it.

And about Beorn's rescue of Thorin being a "romantic touch": it would serve to heighten the reader's emotional response to the battle and to Beorn's assault!


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915



dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jul 22 2009, 3:06am

Post #13 of 32 (164 views)
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What an intriguing UUT! [In reply to] Can't Post

We know that Gandalf returned to Beorn's after leaving the Dwarves at the entrance to Mirkwood. I think it could be possible that he joined in the attack on Dol Guldur, then perhaps continued on with Gandalf!

That's a good point about his being a loner, with only the bears to socialize with, but that does change after he returns home! Although, his wrecking havoc with goblins would make him quite popular locally: "The goblins of the Misty Mountains were now few and terrified, and hidden in the deepest holes they could find; and the Wargs had vanished from the woods, so that men went abroad without fear."


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915



dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jul 22 2009, 3:08am

Post #14 of 32 (180 views)
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Yes, Curious called it [In reply to] Can't Post

a "romantic touch" to the story.

And when we see it in the movie, we're going to have to have several tissues handy!


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915



dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jul 22 2009, 3:19am

Post #15 of 32 (176 views)
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Breaking out in song [In reply to] Can't Post

Hm, I never expected this much "melodic" response to some of these questions! Laugh

You've got a good point about the Eagles waiting until their enemies were "hemmed in" by the arms of the Mountain!

Now that's a new observation about Beorn's getting Thorin away from the battle: "Very Tolkien"! It does cause a momentary "break", drawing us to the more personal side of the battle, before thrusting us into the fray again.

That last question was an awkward one for me to write - I'm still not satisfied with it! Blush I was bothered a bit by how "happy" the Elves seemed, when so many had been killed, and wondering if that was because they knew where their kin were, but we the readers had no idea yet about Mandos. LOL, I'm still trying to figure out my question! Laugh

It's frustrating when you have those posting problems...Unsure


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915



batik
Tol Eressea


Jul 22 2009, 3:29am

Post #16 of 32 (163 views)
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Oops! Not *your* question... [In reply to] Can't Post

but the words from TH that your question was based on. *That* phrasing was awkward to me. An un-Tolkien like lack of flow!

And...there were even *more* ditties in the original reply! Wink I suppose an intervention ocurred and spared all from that bit of silliness.


(This post was edited by batik on Jul 22 2009, 3:33am)


dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jul 22 2009, 3:37am

Post #17 of 32 (153 views)
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Aww... [In reply to] Can't Post

"I missed a lot, seemingly." Wink


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915



sador
Half-elven

Jul 22 2009, 10:46am

Post #18 of 32 (156 views)
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We had such a moment in Jackson, too [In reply to] Can't Post

With Gandalf and Pippin on the wall.


In Reply To

I like that Tolkien allows for an out-of-the-battle moment to present a (however unlikely) moment of this-is-what-I'd-do-if-I-could.



"We will honour the agreement of the dead." - Dain.


sador
Half-elven

Jul 22 2009, 10:50am

Post #19 of 32 (159 views)
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Very nice; but, alas [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
Far over Mirkwood tiding spread: "Smaug is dead!" Leaves rustled and startled ears were lifted. Even before the Elvenking rode forth the new had passed west right to the pinewoods of the Misty Mountains; Beorn had heard it in his wooden house, and the goblins were at council in their caves.

- 'Fire and Water'

"We will honour the agreement of the dead." - Dain.


Dreamdeer
Valinor


Jul 22 2009, 3:59pm

Post #20 of 32 (148 views)
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Oh well! [In reply to] Can't Post

Hmmm...considering that Grizzly Bears can run up to 35 miles per hour, but he wouldn't run every step of the way or he'd be too exhausted to fight, he'd come along the same road that he recommended for the dwarves, unencumbered because he can live off of what bears eat, and when the road petered out he'd be quite able to take to the woods, his natural habitat...how far would that make it, if he started traveling on the day that he learned of Smaug's death?

Life is beautiful and dangerous! Beware! Enjoy!


Curious
Half-elven


Jul 22 2009, 4:42pm

Post #21 of 32 (146 views)
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Maybe three weeks to get there? [In reply to] Can't Post

That's what this timeline suggests. At about 24 miles per day. But this estimate of mileage suggests that the distance is much shorter.

That raises a different question. How did Beorn and Gandalf avoid the swamps at the east end of the elven path? Did they take the elven path? Beorn could have gone north and Gandalf could have gone south. Or they could have run into the elves of Mirkwood and had a more friendly meeting than the dwarves did. Gandalf, at least, had heard that the path disappeared in the east, so he knew not to stick to it until the end. Beorn might have been able to make it cross country if necessary.


Curious
Half-elven


Jul 22 2009, 9:41pm

Post #22 of 32 (144 views)
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I didn't get that impression. [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
The Arkenstone: the implication is that no one will ever again be able to see it, since it is buried "deep beneath the Mountain" with Thorin - and hence, it will no longer tempt anyone!


I have a hard time believing it will really be buried from sight. I would prefer to believe that it will be worked into Thorin's monument so that all friends of the dwarves can come and see it and see Orcrist and honor Thorin as they do so.


dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jul 23 2009, 12:36am

Post #23 of 32 (137 views)
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The problem is [In reply to] Can't Post

that "Bard laid the Arkenstone upon his breast".

Now, if this means that Bard literally put the Arkenstone on Thorin's breast, then it should have to be contained within the tomb (thinking of Balin's sarcophagus).

But if that term is meant figuratively, then yes, it could have been placed outside of the coffin proper.

I can't find anything of Tolkien's intent regarding the Arkenstone, so it looks like both interpretations are possibilities!


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915



Curious
Half-elven


Jul 23 2009, 1:25am

Post #24 of 32 (139 views)
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Wasn't Aragorn preserved for all to see? [In reply to] Can't Post

Could the same have happened to Thorin? And dwarves are said to return to stone when they die.


dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jul 23 2009, 1:34am

Post #25 of 32 (134 views)
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Hm. [In reply to] Can't Post

That would work, if Thorin was able to be "preserved" in a presentable form - wounds hidden, body posed appropriately before any "petrification" set in.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915


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