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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Main:
"Blessing of the Tree"

Finding Frodo
Tol Eressea


Sep 3 2007, 3:18am

Post #1 of 11 (452 views)
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"Blessing of the Tree" Can't Post

I was reading the magazine my alma mater sends to alumni and this article caught my eye. Every year since 1906, the college has planted a tree dedicated to the graduating class. I don't recall witnessing the ceremony at any time, but I enjoyed reading the blessing that is said over each new tree. Here it is:

May the axe be far away from you;
May fire be far away from you;
May there be rain without storm;
God of trees, may you be blessed;
God of life, may we and our world be blessed.

I can imagine Treebeard saying something like this over young trees in Fangorn. Of course, it would be much longer if he said it!

Where's Frodo?


Kyriel
Forum Admin / Moderator


Sep 3 2007, 2:17pm

Post #2 of 11 (334 views)
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That's lovely [In reply to] Can't Post

Sounds very Celtic.

But if they plant all those trees on campus, I wonder how they still have room left for the students! Or do they just plant them anywhere?

Those left standing will make millions writing books on the way it should have been. --Incubus


dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Sep 3 2007, 3:20pm

Post #3 of 11 (328 views)
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That does sound like [In reply to] Can't Post

the "Gaelic Blessing", doesn't it!

Tolkien would like that tradition Smile!


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Aunt Dora Baggins
Immortal


Sep 3 2007, 4:51pm

Post #4 of 11 (329 views)
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Wow, does that blessing date back to 1906? [In reply to] Can't Post

Timeless and lovely. Thanks for sharing that!

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Greenwood Hobbit
Tol Eressea


Sep 3 2007, 5:56pm

Post #5 of 11 (330 views)
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How beautiful - and I'd like to add a line - [In reply to] Can't Post

'May we care for you through all the seasons of the years'.
So often trees are planted - especially in public places - with much ceremony, then left pretty much to fend for themselves. They often need extra water while establishing, the bases need keeping clear of weed growth, strimmers should not be used anywhere near them, ties and stakes need checking and loosening, and removing after a reasonable interval, etc etc.
*pushes soapbox back under desk*


Finding Frodo
Tol Eressea


Sep 4 2007, 2:28am

Post #6 of 11 (319 views)
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Good question [In reply to] Can't Post

I assume they're all on campus. At least, there are a lot of trees there. I really don't remember much, if anything, about this tradition from my school days. Apparently, each tree is also given a name by the graduating class. One mentioned in the article from the "Star Wars" era is "Tree-2-D-2". I couldn't tell you what my class tree is named or where it is. Perhaps some research is in order.

Where's Frodo?


Finding Frodo
Tol Eressea


Sep 4 2007, 2:31am

Post #7 of 11 (317 views)
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I don't know [In reply to] Can't Post

If the blessing does date back to 1906, perhaps the author had some foresight in writing "May fire be far from you." There was a big fire at my college in 1986 (I think) and several buildings were destroyed. Certainly some trees must have been lost too.

Where's Frodo?


Finding Frodo
Tol Eressea


Sep 4 2007, 2:33am

Post #8 of 11 (315 views)
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Thank you, GwH [In reply to] Can't Post

That's an excellent point. I do hope the trees are well-cared for. That's something else for me to look into.

Where's Frodo?


Finding Frodo
Tol Eressea


Sep 4 2007, 2:49am

Post #9 of 11 (316 views)
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Aha! [In reply to] Can't Post

I no longer feel bad for not remembering the tree-planting tradition, because the tradition seemed to be on hiatus the entire time I was an undergrad. I checked the college website and it seems that the "annual" tree-planting was more like "occasional" tree-planting. Perhaps it depended on whether trees were needed (or if there was room!) or maybe it was the whim of the class. Also, the first year for a named tree that I saw was 1928. By 2006 there were 43 trees. The earlier names were from classic literature or ancient mythology, but in 1969 the tree was named "Aquarius", and there's a long stretch of humorous names after that. Then you hit 2000 and they're very serious, earnest and dull names like "Believe". "Believe" isn't a name, not even for a tree!

Where's Frodo?


grammaboodawg
Immortal


Sep 6 2007, 1:38am

Post #10 of 11 (306 views)
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Ohhh... that's lovely *cuts, pastes* // [In reply to] Can't Post

 


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Greenwood Hobbit
Tol Eressea


Sep 6 2007, 7:42pm

Post #11 of 11 (341 views)
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Hm - 'Believe' - perhaps a play on words? [In reply to] Can't Post

Not quite as dull as you might think? You know - let there be leaves, believe there'll be leaves, etc?

 
 

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