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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
female dwarves
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trqn13
Bree

Mar 22 2013, 5:33pm

Post #1 of 37 (1117 views)
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female dwarves Can't Post

was it necessary to give the women dwarves who are fleeing Erebor beards? I mean yes "It's true you don't see many dwarf women. And in fact, they are so alike in voice and appearance, that they are often mistaken for dwarf men". but beards,, really? what do you guys think?


Eowyn3
Rivendell

Mar 22 2013, 5:44pm

Post #2 of 37 (646 views)
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I thought they did it in good taste, [In reply to] Can't Post

where the Dwarf women still looked like women and yet followed the description. Their beards are not very visible, in fact, I didn't notice until my second viewing at the theater.

" He has just as much reason to go to war as you do. Why can he not fight for those he loves?"


Angharad73
Rohan


Mar 22 2013, 5:51pm

Post #3 of 37 (626 views)
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I liked the Dwarf women [In reply to] Can't Post

Beards and all. I thought they looked good. They looked Dwarfish enough, but not too masculine to be mistaken for males Dwarves. The gender distinction was very obvious. And I didn't mind the beards. Had they given them big flowing beards, like Gloin, that would have been too much, but a bit of fuzz was fine.


QuackingTroll
Valinor


Mar 22 2013, 5:55pm

Post #4 of 37 (633 views)
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I think the dwarves in general looked too comical [In reply to] Can't Post

When Balin finishes his story about Thorin it's supposed to be this big emotional thing where they all see him as their king.

But every viewing I went to the audience was giggling at how stupid the dwarves (mainly Nori) look. You just can't take them seriously.


(This post was edited by QuackingTroll on Mar 22 2013, 5:55pm)


IdrilofGondolin
Rohan

Mar 22 2013, 7:10pm

Post #5 of 37 (576 views)
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The Hobbit Chronicles [In reply to] Can't Post

has lovely photos of dwarf women with beards. The beards are tasteful and interesting. Even the children have them.


Salmacis81
Grey Havens


Mar 22 2013, 7:19pm

Post #6 of 37 (574 views)
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Gimli [In reply to] Can't Post

Ever since the LOTR movies, dwarves have been portrayed in a less-than-serious light. Gimli (along with Merry and Pippin) was most certainly made to be the comic relief of the films, but he was still portrayed as a capable warrior when it counted. And while I'll agree that a few of the dwarves looked a bit outlandish (namely Oin and Nori), I didn't feel at all like it was overdone.


Salmacis81
Grey Havens


Mar 22 2013, 7:26pm

Post #7 of 37 (571 views)
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Aragorn's comment to Eowyn [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, since Aragorn's response to Gimli's line was "It's the beards", they kind of already established that dwarf women had beards.

Canonically, it's also correct. This comes from the LOTR Appendix A - "They are in voice and appearance, and in garb if they must go on a journey, so like to the dwarf-men that the eyes and ears of other peoples cannot tell them apart."

If anything, Jackson made the dwarf females TOO feminine-looking.




In Reply To
was it necessary to give the women dwarves who are fleeing Erebor beards? I mean yes "It's true you don't see many dwarf women. And in fact, they are so alike in voice and appearance, that they are often mistaken for dwarf men". but beards,, really? what do you guys think?



Olessan
Bree


Mar 22 2013, 7:33pm

Post #8 of 37 (549 views)
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They look fantastic. [In reply to] Can't Post

Actually, I almost wish they had more beard on them. They could certainly used more than the wispiness they had -- I expected them to. More along the chin at least. But, I'm happy with what they've done.


swordwhale
Tol Eressea


Mar 22 2013, 7:43pm

Post #9 of 37 (524 views)
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indeed! [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Ever since the LOTR movies, dwarves have been portrayed in a less-than-serious light. Gimli (along with Merry and Pippin) was most certainly made to be the comic relief of the films, but he was still portrayed as a capable warrior when it counted. And while I'll agree that a few of the dwarves looked a bit outlandish (namely Oin and Nori), I didn't feel at all like it was overdone.


I loved the Dwarf design in general! And I am an artist who has always been highly Elf-centric. Finally, they have raised the Dwarves from cartoony comic relief to actual characters. Yes, some of the designs are pushing it, but go walk down a street in a big city, or find another culture you're unfamiliar with and look at some of the "costuming and hair" ... humanity has a history of outlandishness.

Geez, even the hair/beard combos of the Civil War era (American) are insane by today's standards.

I think it was also a place where the designers could go a bit out on a limb. We needed the visual distinction between characters and they achieved it.

On the women, I think they did a fine job. Having been, all my life, of Elvish heart and stout Pennsylvania German genes (read, short, hairy, wider than last we met), I was highly pleased to see some women who did not look like willowy fashion models. HOORAY! HUZZAH!!!

Still trying to figure out how to glue on some horsehair for some side whiskers for the next midnight opening...

Go outside and play...


IdrilofGondolin
Rohan

Mar 22 2013, 7:57pm

Post #10 of 37 (491 views)
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Don't Use Crazy Glue [In reply to] Can't Post

But that is just a suggestion.


sauget.diblosio
Tol Eressea

Mar 22 2013, 8:39pm

Post #11 of 37 (499 views)
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Even the dwarf women [In reply to] Can't Post

have more beard than Kili.


DanielLB
Immortal


Mar 22 2013, 8:57pm

Post #12 of 37 (440 views)
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I would've given them even bigger beards! / [In reply to] Can't Post

 


ryouko
Lorien

Mar 22 2013, 9:42pm

Post #13 of 37 (426 views)
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Agreed [In reply to] Can't Post

I liked some of the designs they had in the Art book. I would have loved a little more facial hair, with pretty beads and gems woven into the beards.


Maciliel
Tol Eressea


Mar 22 2013, 10:28pm

Post #14 of 37 (450 views)
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i actually don't see a cannonical reason that female dwarves should have beards [In reply to] Can't Post

 if this is the passage cited for cannon...


Quote
LOTR Appendix A - "They are in voice and appearance, and in garb if they must go on a journey, so like to the dwarf-men that the eyes and ears of other peoples cannot tell them apart."


... it says nothing about female dwarves having beards.

all it literally says is that, if they have to go travelling, they are similar enough (at least to an outsider's eye), that they are mistaken for dwarf men. they could be wearing hoods.

i always took aragorn's comment as a joke, especially since gimli himself was joking.

i don't mind the concept of jackson's female dwarves having beards, i just don't see that cannon says they do, definitively.

cheers ---


.


aka. fili orc-enshield
+++++++++++++++++++
the scene, as i understand it, is exceptionally well-written. fili (in sort of a callback to the scene with the eagles), calls out "thorRIIIIIIN!!!" just as he sees the pale orc veer in for the kill. he picks up the severed arm of an orc which is lying on the ground, swings it up in desperation, effectively blocking the pale orc's blow. and thus, forever after, fili is known as "fili orc-enshield."

this earns him deep respect from his hard-to-please uncle. as well as a hug. kili wipes his boots on the pale orc's glory box. -- maciliel


Kimtc
Rohan


Mar 22 2013, 10:30pm

Post #15 of 37 (414 views)
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I would love to have seen more dwarf children! [In reply to] Can't Post

I only saw one being carried out of Erebor during the evacuation. And from the back. Maybe the EE might have some in Dale (or I need to start pausing the Dale scenes to see if there are any there with the dwarf women).


DanielLB
Immortal


Mar 22 2013, 10:36pm

Post #16 of 37 (430 views)
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There's also ... [In reply to] Can't Post

In The Hobbit, Bilbo says:


Quote
His only comfort was that he couldn't be mistaken for a dwarf, as he had no beard.


That suggests to me, all Dwarves, whether male or female, had beards.

And although technically not "canon", Tolkien does say in The War of the Jewels that Dwarves were born with beards.


Macfeast
Rohan


Mar 22 2013, 10:50pm

Post #17 of 37 (409 views)
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I'm not sure how else you are supposed to read it. [In reply to] Can't Post

To me, it's one of the closest ways of saying "dwarf women have beards" without actually using the word "beard".

Consider this statement; "I usually wear jeans and hoodies, and jackets when I'm outdoors". Do you read that to mean "I wear jackets inside", or do you read the part about jackets to be something that only applies when outdoors?
Now compare that with the given quote; "They are in voice and appearance, and in garb if they must go on a journey...". Not so different from the above example, I would say; The part about the garb only applying during certain circumstances (namely when they go on a journey), and the part about voice and appearance still needing to read true without it. For them to look like the bearded men, without taking the garb into the equation, I can see no other way than for them to be bearded.

Then there's the quote DanielLB provided, as well as a direct "dwarf women have beards"-quote from the History of Middle-earth-series, The War of the Jewels. Even if we don't treat the latter as canon, there's enough canon material to support reaching the same conclusion, and nothing that I can think off to deny it.

As for the film, I love that the women were bearded, and that they allowed this fantasy race to keep some of its fantastical elements (something I wish had been even more true for the Company). I wouldn't have minded them being longer, actually.


(This post was edited by Macfeast on Mar 22 2013, 11:00pm)


Maciliel
Tol Eressea


Mar 22 2013, 11:19pm

Post #18 of 37 (377 views)
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i disagree that the hobbit quote [In reply to] Can't Post

 i disagree that the hobbit quote is supportive of female dwarves having beards.


Quote
In The Hobbit, Bilbo says:

Quote
His only comfort was that he couldn't be mistaken for a dwarf, as he had no beard.

That suggests to me, all Dwarves, whether male or female, had beards.

And although technically not "canon", Tolkien does say in The War of the Jewels that Dwarves were born with beards.


since dwarf women are only one-third the population, and they generally stayed in their dwarven halls, and they aren't even mentioned in the family trees, the only one mentioned by name is in one sentence, how other than male would bilbo reference dwarves? within the middle-earth universe, they are all but invisible, and outside of the universe, their creator (tolkien) all but ignored them.

it's rather a waste of pixels for me to quote the lotr passage again, since you and i read it differently, but, what the heck...


Quote
LOTR Appendix A - "They are in voice and appearance, and in garb if they must go on a journey, so like to the dwarf-men that the eyes and ears of other peoples cannot tell them apart."


and, if tolkien wanted to say "female dwarves have beards" in the appendix, he could have easily said so.

with deference and courtesy, speaking as someone who studied formal linguistics and was accepted into a phd program for linguistics, the example sentence you gave (re jeans and hoodies) actually can be interpreted to mean that (a) you usually wear jeans and hoodies, (b) and jackets (when you are) outdoors (establishing a subset of your state when you are not outdoors = jeans and hoodies). it could also be interpreted as you wear jeans and hoodies, and when you are outdoors, jackets in addition.

also, your sentence has a very different construction. yours has the verb in the first (jeans and hoodies) clause, which can arguably be "inherited" by the second (jackets) clause.

i'm feeling a compulsion to haul out my old linguistics textbooks and diagram the lotr sentence. i'll probably do that, now that the bee is buzzing around my bonnet. but not now.

the lotr appendix states that they are very similar in voice and appearance. but as to appearance, it isn't specific. perhaps their general proportions were about the same, perhaps their facial features about the same.

it does state, whatever the physical similarities, when they were travelling (and tolkien has his unexpected party dwarves all wearing hoods, so perhaps that can be taken as standard travelling garb), they might be mistaken for male dwarves.

which probably wouldn't be hard, considering the chances that the average edain or hobbit ever saw a confirmed sighting of a female dwarf for comparison.

re tolkien's letter... he often ignores or glosses over the female segment of the dwarf population. its not implausible that when he mentions, in the letter, that dwarves were born with beards, he was talking about male dwarves.

i think, for the moment, i'm all pixeled-out on this topic.



cheers --


.


aka. fili orc-enshield
+++++++++++++++++++
the scene, as i understand it, is exceptionally well-written. fili (in sort of a callback to the scene with the eagles), calls out "thorRIIIIIIN!!!" just as he sees the pale orc veer in for the kill. he picks up the severed arm of an orc which is lying on the ground, swings it up in desperation, effectively blocking the pale orc's blow. and thus, forever after, fili is known as "fili orc-enshield."

this earns him deep respect from his hard-to-please uncle. as well as a hug. kili wipes his boots on the pale orc's glory box. -- maciliel

(This post was edited by Maciliel on Mar 22 2013, 11:20pm)


Macfeast
Rohan


Mar 22 2013, 11:41pm

Post #19 of 37 (368 views)
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The letter (well, book) referred to... [In reply to] Can't Post

...actually refers to the females outright, in this rare case. The quote reads "no Man nor Elf has ever seen a beardless Dwarf - unless he were shaven in mockery, and would then be more like to die of shame... For the Naugrim have beards from the beginning of their lives, male and female alike...".

As for what the appendices say, I admittedly haven't got any linguistic knowledge beyond what I guess is the norm, but to me, it seems like the most logical way of reading it, the "in garb"-segment reading as a seperate clause from "in voice and appearance". Guess we'll just have to disagree on that one.


(This post was edited by Macfeast on Mar 22 2013, 11:49pm)


Kangi Ska
Half-elven


Mar 23 2013, 1:06am

Post #20 of 37 (363 views)
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Dwarf women have better beards than Kili [In reply to] Can't Post

does in PJ's Hobbit movies.

Kangi Ska Resident Trickster & Wicked White Crebain
Life is an adventure, not a contest.

At night you can not tell if crows are black or white.
Photobucket



Salmacis81
Grey Havens


Mar 23 2013, 1:29am

Post #21 of 37 (329 views)
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Beards [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
it does state, whatever the physical similarities, when they were travelling (and tolkien has his unexpected party dwarves all wearing hoods, so perhaps that can be taken as standard travelling garb), they might be mistaken for male dwarves.

The "Unexpected Party" dwarves also have their bushy beards tucked into their belts, in plain sight. It is described as such in the text. Dwarves, as a rule, were known for their beards. So if the women were indistiguishable from the men, even in travel garb, where their beards were often tucked into their belts, chances are that the women had beards. It's not illogical to make that assumption.


swordwhale
Tol Eressea


Mar 23 2013, 5:01am

Post #22 of 37 (323 views)
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Kili kilimanjaro Kilimilivanilli... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
have more beard than Kili.


The fangirls have taken that meme and run with it. As he appears to be the sexiest (by human standards) boy in the band, fanartists have taken the idea that he is a really lousy Dwarf and done a ton of fanart, comics, and other fun stuff based on him being teased about looking more like an Elf, or having less hair than the women. Feels. Lots of feels. He's been quite inspiring. He's also very cute. Thank you WETA for not only blowing up the stereotypes, but stuffing them in the tardis and chucking them past the Restaurant at the End of the Universe...

Go outside and play...


marillaraina
Rohan

Mar 23 2013, 6:02am

Post #23 of 37 (298 views)
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Oh yeah [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

In Reply To
have more beard than Kili.


The fangirls have taken that meme and run with it. As he appears to be the sexiest (by human standards) boy in the band, fanartists have taken the idea that he is a really lousy Dwarf and done a ton of fanart, comics, and other fun stuff based on him being teased about looking more like an Elf, or having less hair than the women. Feels. Lots of feels. He's been quite inspiring. He's also very cute. Thank you WETA for not only blowing up the stereotypes, but stuffing them in the tardis and chucking them past the Restaurant at the End of the Universe...


I've seen some good fanfics based on that idea too. Kili being looked down upon by some other dwarves, taunted, or far worse. It serving to make him determined to prove himself as a "real dwarf", Fili being a supportive big brother, etc.

All kinds of Durin feels out there. :) Some of the stories have been funny or cute too.

Some of it has really been good quality. So it actually works - let's face it, it's being written for the reason most fanfic ends up being written, by fans who like the character and think he's attractive(I can assure you all that Bagginshield fic is not being written by fans who think Thorin and BIlbo are ugly lol), but they can make him NOT attractive within the confines of the stories,to increase the drama and pathos.

Some have taken other tacks though. I've seen some that had him purposely keeping his beard virtually non-existent because of his love for archery, and it being a sort of sign of his independence/rebelliousness, and of course the ever popular having had it forcibly removed by say a gang of nasty humans who hate dwarves or something along those lines, or an enemy of Thorin's who wanted to use him to hurt Thorin, etc. And it supposedly takes an extra long time for dwarf hair to grow(apparently based on their longer lives, so figuring it would grow much slower than humans)

Amazing the amount and variety of drama a simple lack of facial can create. :D


(This post was edited by marillaraina on Mar 23 2013, 6:05am)


DanielLB
Immortal


Mar 23 2013, 9:10am

Post #24 of 37 (284 views)
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All valid points ... but ... [In reply to] Can't Post

The fact that Tolkien doesn't say anywhere that female Dwarves don't have beards is enough evidence for me to believe they did have beards. Wink He's not one to gloss over those kind of details.

If he says all Dwarves have beards (not indicating gender), then I'm inclined to believe that all Dwarves (male and female) have beards.


arithmancer
Grey Havens


Mar 23 2013, 1:05pm

Post #25 of 37 (259 views)
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Beards... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Dwarves, as a rule, were known for their beards. So if the women were indistiguishable from the men, even in travel garb, where their beards were often tucked into their belts, chances are that the women had beards. It's not illogical to make that assumption.


Exactly how I see it. If someone's mental picture of Dwarf women has been beardless based on the vary scanty description of them available, I'd not tell them they are "wrong". But giving Dwarf women beards in the films (or in fanart and fanfiction) is clearly supported by the line cited. The statement that they are like Dwarf men in appearance, leaves the filmmakers and any other readers of the books, free to choose various common physical traits, and imagining they, like the men, have beards, is one such common trait.

And this gal loves the bearded Dwarf women! I also loved the costumes they were wearing. I'd love a longer/closer look at some in the EE, though I doubt I will get one. :) If I were ever to dress as an ME female, I'd want to wear clothes like theirs.

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