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The One Ring Forums: Off Topic: The Pollantir:
If you could narrow it down to just one…who would you say is your favourite Tolkien character?

malickfan
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May 4 2012, 10:09am


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If you could narrow it down to just one…who would you say is your favourite Tolkien character? Can't Post

If you could narrow it down to just one…who would you say is your favourite Tolkien character?
(From any of his writings)

For me (as people familiar with my posting history may realise) it’s Cirdan the shipwright.


I’ve got to admit the character made very little impression on me during my first reading of The Lord Of The Rings (and none at all when I saw the films-he does appear very briefly but wasn’t named in the trilogy) seemingly just one of a stack of random background characters, but in the years since (and several more intensive re-reads later), and with my discovery of Tolkien’s other work he’s grown on me enormously.


A fascinating character in trivia terms, but also a shining example of the best qualities of The Eldar race he wasn’t a prominent warrior like Aragorn or Hurin nor a memorable personality like Gollum or Tom Bombadil, but I think his backstory and personality more than merits his inclusion on a list of the greatest characters.
Now I will give my reasons, you may not agree, you may find it a silly decision, and I’m sure you’ve got opinions of your own, anyway…


Probably not an elve of the awakening, but almost certainly the eldest remaining elve in The Third Age of Middle Earth (i.e. ancient…), by the close of The Lord Of The Rings he was greatly aged, but very tall and saw ‘more Deeply and further’ into Middle Earth’s Future than any others of his race. Arguably he achieved more than most of his race, despite I suspect working largely unnoticed or unknown by the majority of Middle Earth’s residents.


Furthermore he was one of a handful of links between all four ages (I find it interesting to think of all the figures in Middle Earth History he may have interacted with), in terms of age, experiences and knowledge (In Third Age Middle Earth at least) he was probably unmatched (Tom Bombadil and perhaps Treebeard excluded). Living through millennia of bloodshed and turmoil he was destined to be the last elve to set sail from Middle Earth- a legendary enigma, yet a living metaphor for the fading of the Elves.


During the first Age he survived the journey from Cunieven, and many of the battles that followed, he sacrificed his greatest desire-to see the undying lands, out of loyalty for Elwe and his further kin. He selflessly took on the destiny handed to him by the Valar- building the ships for the Eldar and remaining in Middle Earth until the last set sail.


-Right at the start of Middle Earth’s existence, he took a decision for its future- unknowing of where it would take him, nor how long it would take to get there, and with no concrete reward in sight…yet through the vast years that followed, he continued with said mission, whilst many of his kin sailed away, fell in battle or won renown in greater deeds. It was an exhaustive, generous act, which was often matched in later years.



Tolkien never wrote of a companion (that’s not to say he didn’t have one) but I think that’s another reason why I identified with him so much-the image of him standing alone (or with a small group of helpers) on the shores of Lindon gazing out to sea was never expressively written, but is the image I always return to when I see his name crop up in writing, to me it makes his story even more dramatic, and noble.



Throughout the battles, and tribulations of the first Age he continued to be a figure of great wisdom and bravery, rescuing many elves and Edain from the ruins of the Falas, including Elwing and Gil-Galad, and assisting in the war against Morgoth. Earendil was apprenticed to him, and with his help made the successful voyage to Valinor, yet again Cirdan (unwittingly or otherwise) laid the foundations for Middle Earth’s future.


In the second Age he fought in The Battle of the Last Alliance, Witnessing the arrival of The Istari he surrendered his ring, Narya to Gandalf. Through the Third Age he continued to advise and assist in the battle against Sauron, serving as a member of The White Council, and providing help for Elrond and the Rangers of the North.


He may have made just one personal appearance in The Lord of the Rings but I think it somes him up perfectly-


‘As they came to the gates Cirdan the Shipwright came forth to greet them. Very tall he was, and his beard was long, and we was grey and old, save that his eyes were keen as stars; and he looked at them and bowed, and said ‘All is now ready.’


After all the long years, the task he had been waiting for had at last arrived…yet he appeared quietly and dignified, still focused, and he bowed and accepted it as just one more job, before going back to his duties.

Professional, wise, considerate, selfless and brave (and to an extent mythical), he achieved all this despite being one of the ‘lesser’ elves. Tolkien never resolved his
fate, but I’d like to think he’d done more than enough by the Fourth Age to merit his long-awaited voyage to Valinor.


Cirdan The Shipwright certainly wasn’t the most prominent, or interesting character of Tolkien’s, but he is unquestionably my favourite.Smile


I think I’ve made my feelings clear, How about you? Do you have a favourite character? Why?Smile


(This post was edited by malickfan on May 4 2012, 10:10am)

Subject User Time
If you could narrow it down to just one…who would you say is your favourite Tolkien character? malickfan Send a private message to malickfan May 4 2012, 10:09am
    Wow DanielLB Send a private message to DanielLB May 4 2012, 10:17am
        Sadly I have no knowledge of a fan club... malickfan Send a private message to malickfan May 4 2012, 10:24am
    Fëanor Faenoriel Send a private message to Faenoriel May 4 2012, 4:15pm
    One who never appeared in the films. Darkstone Send a private message to Darkstone May 4 2012, 5:18pm
        I was sad that he didn't make it into the movies too. Aunt Dora Baggins Send a private message to Aunt Dora Baggins May 4 2012, 6:04pm
            That's for sure. Darkstone Send a private message to Darkstone May 4 2012, 6:08pm
            I struggle with that a bit in the book, too. RosieLass Send a private message to RosieLass May 4 2012, 7:17pm
                I always thought Aunt Dora Baggins Send a private message to Aunt Dora Baggins May 4 2012, 8:28pm
        Yes. Not *the* favorite, but I missed that a great deal.// Ethel Duath Send a private message to Ethel Duath May 22 2012, 1:11am
    definetely Turin KAOS82 Send a private message to KAOS82 May 4 2012, 11:23pm
    wait - where's the poll? Annael Send a private message to Annael May 5 2012, 2:06pm
        Favorite character sam90 Send a private message to sam90 May 5 2012, 5:11pm
    I like a bunch of characters but my favorite Gimli'sBox Send a private message to Gimli'sBox May 7 2012, 4:06am
        Me too! Nimloth9 Send a private message to Nimloth9 May 7 2012, 7:16am
            Amen. :) // Ethel Duath Send a private message to Ethel Duath May 22 2012, 1:13am
    Well.... aranelthehobbit22 Send a private message to aranelthehobbit22 May 9 2012, 2:41am
    Feanor Finwe Send a private message to Finwe May 19 2012, 12:03am
        Yes. That's all I could think of Ethel Duath Send a private message to Ethel Duath May 22 2012, 1:14am
    Thanks for this! The reading room used to be Ethel Duath Send a private message to Ethel Duath May 22 2012, 1:15am
    Probably Aragorn Otaku-sempai Send a private message to Otaku-sempai May 22 2012, 1:27am
    Aragorn Yngwulff Send a private message to Yngwulff Jun 1 2012, 10:55pm
    The Blue Wizards Xanaseb Send a private message to Xanaseb Jun 2 2012, 11:52am
        Although a less obscure choice... Radagast-Aiwendil Send a private message to Radagast-Aiwendil Jul 6 2012, 10:36am

 
 
 

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