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Some confusing (to me) issues about the Power(s) of the Ring and Isildur
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Brethil
Half-elven


Mar 22 2013, 9:59pm

Post #1 of 130 (1556 views)
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Some confusing (to me) issues about the Power(s) of the Ring and Isildur Can't Post

Something about the power(s) of the Ring which has really confused me for years. I actually wrote a rather garbled post about this a few months ago, but missed my edit window and was unhappy with the result, as it was not nearly clear enough of what I want to discuss. (Plus I put it in the wrong spot, silly me.)

To begin: In the cast of charactars having borne the Ring, from Sauron to Frodo, we have a collection of different "effects" that the Ring had upon the wearer. Sauron gained strength and physical size, as well as his power and knowledge of the thoughts of others. Then we have the other extreme, the small folk such as Hobbits and Gollum (a Hobbit variant) who become invisible when wearing the Ring. I can understand both of these ends of the spectrum, based on, as Gandalf tells Frodo (and I think is a critical statement in understanding the Ring) about Gollum, "The ring had given him power according to his stature."

The part of the spectrum I don't fully understand concerns the Ring's power and effect on Men, particularly on Isildur. To detail, (in UT), we read that Isildur is lost after an Orc attack (about a year after he gained the Ring) when it slipped from his finger near the Gladden Fields, and thus he was lost. The story states that Isildur fled the essentially lost battle at the urging of Elendur, in order that the Ring not fall again into Orc hands, and used the Ring to make himself invisible (though the circlet Elendilmir blazed and gave him away, so he covered his head with a hood.) All in vain, the Ring slipped from his finger in the strong current and he was shot by Orcs on the opposite bank, among the reeds.

My question is this: Is "invisibilty" really Isildur's 'stature' in terms of the Ring?

In FOTR, Boromir so confidently asserts (above Tol Brandir, to Frodo) that "What could not a warrior do in this hour, a great leader?...The Ring would give me the power of Command**...and all Men would flock to my banner!"

(**Note that by 'Command' here, I believe Boromir is alluding to the portion of Maiar power that both Sauron and Gandalf share, as we see Gandalf use it to attempt to hold the door in Moria against the Balrog - who uses his own spell in return. The implication is that the wearer of the Ring could call upon that part of Sauron's Maiar power, held within the Ring with the sacrifice of his own blood. (In support, I think that the Ring's seeming lack of effect on Bombadil is because, as closer to the original Music than the Maiar, if presumably he is indeed Ainur, that level of power within the Ring was within his scope to his to resist.)

Then, also above Tol Brandir, (FOTR) we have Boromir's described as drifting deeply into "his talk dwelt on walls and weapons, and the mustering of men; and he drew plans for great alliances and glorious victories to be; and he cast down Mordor, and became himself a mighty king, benevolent and wise."

So consider these two facts: arcane and surely obscure knowledge of the Maiar power of Command transmitted through the Ring, and the presumption on Boromir's part that this power would become his... AND that wearing the Ring would give him immense powers of leadership of Men. Both of them seem too specific and imply knowledge of the actual workings of the Ring to simply be some sort of distant temptation of the Ring on Boromir. So, can we conclude that these two facts were, instead, a recalling by Boromir, handed down through traditions, some of the things that actually ocurred while Isildur wore the Ring? And if invisibility were the only power conferred, why does Boromir not mention that, or consider it the Ring's power upon Men?

So this is my confusion: does the Ring possibly have a dual use, acting as one needs it to or as one's spririt exists in a given moment? For example, did it indeed help Isildur lead and Command Men; but when he was in fear, did it then make him invisible?

Any thoughts, scholar friends?


Hell hath no fury like a Dragon who is missing a cup.

(This post was edited by Brethil on Mar 22 2013, 10:03pm)


Elizabeth
Valinor


Mar 23 2013, 1:16am

Post #2 of 130 (720 views)
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We know very little about how it works... [In reply to] Can't Post

...but it's clear that the character of the wearer is an important element. It is usually argued that the invisibility effect, which works on both Men and Hobbits, somehow has to do with the wearer being in the "spirit realm". In any case, the invisibility appears to have little to do with the mental state of the wearer: it was an accidental discovery for Bilbo, and an accidental occurrance for Frodo in the Prancing Pony.

No one has ever explained why Bombadil was unaffected, but then no one has ever satisfactorily explained anything about Bombadil.

Beyond the invisibility issue, the Ring offers to provide power to one who seeks it. Neither Bilbo, nor Sam, nor Frodo (until the very last moment in the Sammath Naur) had any inclinations toward power, but Boromir certainly did, as did (to a more limited extent) Gollum. Boromir's lust for power was such that merely the concept and near availability of the Ring was sufficient to set him off.

As inherently powerful beings themselves, Gandalf and Galadriel knew what the Ring could do for them, as well as the inherent trap in its design: a wearer who uses the power of the Ring becomes inevitably enslaved to its Lord, Sauron.

In Isildur's case, he appears to have realized that the Ring was evil, and was apparently intending to deliver it to Elrond. He wore it to escape, so the invisibility effect was at the basic level, as with Bilbo.








Brethil
Half-elven


Mar 23 2013, 2:18am

Post #3 of 130 (702 views)
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No, I and wish we did know more [In reply to] Can't Post

because it has puzzled me for a long time. It's just difficult for me to picture a masterful Man of Numenor like Isildur being 'of the same stature' as one of our humble Hobbits. And it seems he must have been trying to master the Ring - he tells his son that the reason he can't fully use it to defend them is that he has failed to fully control it yet.

You are right, the desire for the Ring - and as we often see, grabbing power in Tolkien's world rarely ends well - makes Boromir not think clearly. But he seems to have an awful lot of (as Gandalf would say) "professional information" about the Ring.

Bombadil, of course, is just my best guess Wink

And this puzzles me too - if its primary power was invisibility, why didn't Gandalf immediately know which Ring it was - unless that was not the effect that it was strictly or most commonly known for? Instead of dismissing it as one of 'many magic rings." Clearly he discusses the 'vanishing' with Frodo at the beginning of FOTR after Bilbo departs, so he is aware of it.

I just remember feeling so odd about actually seeing the death of Isildur on screen in FOTR - my first thought was this is all wrong - he would not disappear (even though I read it that way for years!) Visually it didn't sit right.

Is it just an oddity trying to reconcile the Ring in the contexts of TH and LOTR?

????????????????

Hell hath no fury like a Dragon who is missing a cup.


Elizabeth
Valinor


Mar 23 2013, 3:49am

Post #4 of 130 (681 views)
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I think invisibility is a relatively minor side-effect [In reply to] Can't Post

...not a "principal power". Even though hobbits who were not in any way seeking power, and certainly not of "great stature", they became invisible. Isildur may have been trying to go a little farther, but if he actually was seeking power, then why would the Ring leave him? The theories I like best are along the lines that he was not trying to use it, but to turn it over to Elrond, which is a fate the Ring might have wanted to avoid.

And, as you say, if the invisibility feature was unique to The One, Gandalf would have recognized it. However, if it's a minor feature, shared with other magic rings, that would explain Gandalf's relative complacency.








Maciliel
Tol Eressea


Mar 23 2013, 12:59pm

Post #5 of 130 (629 views)
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many mysteries surrounding the ring [In reply to] Can't Post

 
... which i am ultimately more pleased with than having all the mechanics of the ring explicitly explained, 'tho (paradoxically) i thoroughly enjoy the theorizing and discussion.

the ring grants power according to stature. what does "stature" mean? one's wisdom? one's power (pre-ring)? one's ability to see the bigger picture, have higher goals? smeagol = to pay back and dominate his community, to live long. boromir = to be a leader of his people and be a defense against the ring's creator, and others. galadriel = to be ruler of all middle-earth.

perhaps it preys upon the bearer's ambitions, be they beneficent or malignant.

regarding invisibility, i don't necessarily say this is a theory i am championing, but it has come to mind, so i will share...

perhaps, regarding invisibility, the ring sensed a desire to be hidden in its bearers. smeagol = to spy (at first), and then to kill more easily (orcs, for food). isuldur = to escape the notice of the orcs. bilbo = to escape unnoticed from gollum. frodo = to go unnoticed by the general populace.

i think the above is too simplistic, ultimately. i think tolkien had certain fuzzy thoughts about the ring in the hobbit, and he cleaned up a lot of the blur in lotr, but i didn't necessarily explain everything (indeed -- did he fully know himself, or is the case of the ring like tom bombadil and the origin of the orcs.... something that tolkien hadn't fully nailed down yet?).


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


arithmancer
Grey Havens


Mar 23 2013, 1:40pm

Post #6 of 130 (596 views)
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An interesting question! [In reply to] Can't Post

I think it might be arguable that the Ring can provide power to command others to its Bearer when he is not wearing it, if that is the intent/nature of the Bearer. So Isildur may have gained that sort of power from it that we were not shown, but was using it in his death scene for its invisibility effect. (And so that Boromir might indeed have gained powers that enhanced his native leadership skills).

My reasons for supposing this are related to the scene in LotR (Book 4) in which Frodo gets Smeagol to swear to help him get into Mordor. I'm finding this in my Kindle edition, it;s around page 610-620. To me, it seems a possible indication that Frodo's "stature" was sufficient for him to access this sort of power to a degree in addition to the invisibility (which suggests other characters like Boromir ot Isildur who were leaders/commanders of Men, could also access it, while being able to turn invisible as Frodo could).

The scene takes up about a page. Smeagol offers to swear on the Precious, and we get this description of how Frodo reacts:

"Frodo drew himself up and again Sam was startled by his words and stern voice".

Smeagol and Frodo discuss the terms of the oath, Gollum crawls to Frodo to swear, and then we are told,

"For a moment it appeared to Sam that his master had grown, and Gollum had shrunk: a tall stern shadow, a mighty lord who hid his brightness in a grey cloud, and at his feet a little whining dog."

Sam is at this point an "objective" observer, who has not used the Ring. He sees what we are told seem to him uncharacteristic behaviors and appearance of Frodo, someone he knows well. These subtle and temporary shifts in appearance and behavior have the effect of making Frodo more "lordly", and appear to affect Smeagol, in the moment, influencing his decision. I think this may be the power of the Ring at work.


Maciliel
Tol Eressea


Mar 23 2013, 2:01pm

Post #7 of 130 (630 views)
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interesting -- i always interpreted that scene a different way [In reply to] Can't Post

 
that was always a memorable passage for me. but i interpreted it differently.

i interpreted frodo's "shine" to be that this is a moment that, through frodo's mercy, smeagol may have an opportunity to reclaim himself. i interpreted frodo's "shine" as grace.

but i'm entertaining additional thoughts now. here's an additional quote, from later in the book...


Quote
As Sam stood there, even though the Ring was not on him but hanging by its chain about his neck, he felt himself enlarged, as if he were robed in a huge distorted shadow of himself, a vast and ominous threat halted upon the walls of Mordor.


i think i would have to reread these passages, to give a more thoughtful response.


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


Brethil
Half-elven


Mar 23 2013, 2:31pm

Post #8 of 130 (584 views)
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I like your take on the Ring leaving Isildur, Elizabeth [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
...not a "principal power". Even though hobbits who were not in any way seeking power, and certainly not of "great stature", they became invisible. Isildur may have been trying to go a little farther, but if he actually was seeking power, then why would the Ring leave him? The theories I like best are along the lines that he was not trying to use it, but to turn it over to Elrond, which is a fate the Ring might have wanted to avoid.






Indeed true, Isildur had decided to give the Ring to the Wise at that point - and whether the Ring took its chance in the water rather than be handed over or simply felt that this Man would no longer serve its purpose by trying to use it as it desired, it left him.

Yes, if it was secondary effect Gandalf might not have paid it as much heed. It would help if we had some more ME lore relating to other objects, and if some of them conferred invisibility. We know about the Elf cloaks - though not strict invisibility they help one hide. Maybe its more of a common effect in ME than it first seems.

Hell hath no fury like a Dragon who is missing a cup.


Brethil
Half-elven


Mar 23 2013, 2:44pm

Post #9 of 130 (653 views)
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Ring sensing intent. That's what I feel [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

regarding invisibility, i don't necessarily say this is a theory i am championing, but it has come to mind, so i will share...

perhaps, regarding invisibility, the ring sensed a desire to be hidden in its bearers. smeagol = to spy (at first), and then to kill more easily (orcs, for food). isuldur = to escape the notice of the orcs. bilbo = to escape unnoticed from gollum. frodo = to go unnoticed by the general populace.

i think the above is too simplistic, ultimately. i think tolkien had certain fuzzy thoughts about the ring in the hobbit, and he cleaned up a lot of the blur in lotr, but i didn't necessarily explain everything (indeed -- did he fully know himself, or is the case of the ring like tom bombadil and the origin of the orcs.... something that tolkien hadn't fully nailed down yet?)..






Oh, I like that idea - that the Ring can use its power of invisibility as the wearer feels the need; or it can choose to fall off, as Elizabeth pointed out, and leave the wearer to their fate. So that power can be an effect regardless of any control (or lack thereof) that the wearer has over the Ring...that makes a lot of sense to me.

That's why I posted the question - because usually I can reconcile various "fuzzy" areas, but this area of the working aspects of the Ring, especially relating to Isildur, has always puzzled me, and it leaves me feeling like I am "missing" something.

(And of course Bombadil is a whole other thread! I sort of use him as a supporting argument for determing the level of power contained within the Ring because I feel (maybe?) that whatever he is, he is older and of greater, elemental power (in his local and never-seeking-domination way) than Sauron.)

Hell hath no fury like a Dragon who is missing a cup.


Brethil
Half-elven


Mar 23 2013, 3:14pm

Post #10 of 130 (592 views)
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Power of the Ring, worn or not....neat! [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I think it might be arguable that the Ring can provide power to command others to its Bearer when he is not wearing it, if that is the intent/nature of the Bearer. So Isildur may have gained that sort of power from it that we were not shown, but was using it in his death scene for its invisibility effect. (And so that Boromir might indeed have gained powers that enhanced his native leadership skills). - - Yes! That's what I have been feeling for so long - that there must be a duality of function for the Ring when Isildur had it! And that's why Boromir has the ideas that he does, especially when we know that Denethor was a restless lore-seeking man, who desired the Ring, and so certainly he knew a lot about it's history. -- In addition to your above point about conferring power even if not worn - I wonder if it can also "speak" through someone when one is not wearing it - like Frodo's prophesy/curse of Gollum: ... "a figure robed in white... [that] held a wheel of fire." Frodo told Gollum "in a commanding voice" that "If you touch me ever again, you shall be cast yourself into the Fire of Doom!"It's a singularly Un-Frodo like thing to say!!!!!!!! (Was it the Ring speaking, warning Gollum not to interfere, knowing that in Gollum's holding it will never get back to Sauron?) - - My reasons for supposing this are related to the scene in LotR (Book 4) in which Frodo gets Smeagol to swear to help him get into Mordor. I'm finding this in my Kindle edition, it;s around page 610-620. To me, it seems a possible indication that Frodo's "stature" was sufficient for him to access this sort of power to a degree in addition to the invisibility (which suggests other characters like Boromir ot Isildur who were leaders/commanders of Men, could also access it, while being able to turn invisible as Frodo could).

The scene takes up about a page. Smeagol offers to swear on the Precious, and we get this description of how Frodo reacts:

"Frodo drew himself up and again Sam was startled by his words and stern voice".

Smeagol and Frodo discuss the terms of the oath, Gollum crawls to Frodo to swear, and then we are told,

"For a moment it appeared to Sam that his master had grown, and Gollum had shrunk: a tall stern shadow, a mighty lord who hid his brightness in a grey cloud, and at his feet a little whining dog."

Sam is at this point an "objective" observer, who has not used the Ring. He sees what we are told seem to him uncharacteristic behaviors and appearance of Frodo, someone he knows well. These subtle and temporary shifts in appearance and behavior have the effect of making Frodo more "lordly", and appear to affect Smeagol, in the moment, influencing his decision. I think this may be the power of the Ring at work.
-- This is a great example. I think that that IS the Ring a work, in synch with both Frodo's mood and therefore "stature"; and of course suiting the Ring as well, because as I said above at this point it knows Gollum is a veritable dead end and does not want him to attempt to reclaim itself. Perhaps Sam gets a quick view, because of his proximity to Frodo, of the spiritual "other side" where the Ring's power originates. - I am really so glad to read all these posts, and everyone's thoughts. It's an interpretative topic, and in one way (like Maciliel says) it is neat to have it be a bit mysterious. I have just always wanted to reconcile the issue of Isildur's use and Boromir's lore and to feel comfortable with the spectrums of the Ring's influence, in order to be able to accept the Gladden Fields as something that is logical and correct, and not just inconsistency. Smile


Hell hath no fury like a Dragon who is missing a cup.

(This post was edited by Brethil on Mar 23 2013, 3:18pm)


arithmancer
Grey Havens


Mar 23 2013, 7:35pm

Post #11 of 130 (601 views)
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Agree about Sam [In reply to] Can't Post

Yeah, I had to run right after posting, but I think the short bit in which Sam has the Ring would be interesting to look through also. When does it start to try to influence him? Is it described as having any effect on him that could also be interpreted as more than making him invisible? I may take a look at that chapter later tonight...


Otaku-sempai
Half-elven


Mar 23 2013, 8:11pm

Post #12 of 130 (545 views)
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I think that a strong-willed individual can 'turn off'' the Ring's invisibility [In reply to] Can't Post

A person strong-willed enough to command the One Ring (to the extent that it can be commanded) could possibly also control the Ring's power of invisibility. Of course the Ring did have a will of its own and it was treacherous; it could betray any lesser wearer if he/she lost control for even a moment. Sauron had complete control and was wholly visible while wearing the Ring.

'There are older and fouler things than Orcs in the deep places of the world.' - Gandalf the Grey, The Fellowship of the Ring

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Mar 23 2013, 8:15pm)


Brethil
Half-elven


Mar 23 2013, 10:02pm

Post #13 of 130 (579 views)
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So invisibility is the realm in which the Ring has control.... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
A person strong-willed enough to command the One Ring (to the extent that it can be commanded) could possibly also control the Ring's power of invisibility. Of course the Ring did have a will of its own and it was treacherous; it could betray any lesser wearer if he/she lost control for even a moment. Sauron had complete control and was wholly visible while wearing the Ring.






I have never thought of the reverse - so unless the wearer can exert control, they are drawn into the Ring's world (spirit and to Arda invisible). So active force and control would be necessary NOT to be invisible. Interesting switch-up of the idea that the invisibility is a "power" of the wearer...it actually indicates the complete LACK of power of the wearer.


Thanks, Otaku-sempai! Angelic

Hell hath no fury like a Dragon who is missing a cup.


Elizabeth
Valinor


Mar 23 2013, 11:25pm

Post #14 of 130 (595 views)
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Yes, the effects are very interesting: [In reply to] Can't Post

The main consequence was his great Vision:

Quote
As Sam stood there, even though the Ring was not on him but hanging by its chain about his neck, he felt himself enlarged, as if he were robed in a huge distorted shadow of himself, a vast and ominous threat halted upon the walls of Mordor. He felt that he had from now on only two choices: to forbear the Ring, though it would torment him; or to claim it, and challenge the Power that sat in its dark hold beyond the valley of shadows. Already the Ring tempted him, gnawing at his will and reason. Wild fantasies arose in his mind; and he saw Samwise the Strong, Hero of the Age, striding with a flaming sword across the darkened land, and armies flocking to his call as he marched to the overthrow of Barad-dr. And then all the clouds rolled away, and the white sun shone, and at his command the vale of Gorgoroth became a garden of flowers and trees and brought forth fruit. He had only to put on the Ring and claim it for his own, and all this could be.

He resisted this largely because "deep down in him lived still unconquered his plain hobbit-sense...."

But there are other interesting effects:

* As before, Sam found that his hearing was sharpened, but that to his sight the things of this world seemed thin and vague.

* Although he was invisible, he still set off the alarm at the entrance to The Tower of Cirith Ungol.

* An orc actually saw him, sort of: For what it saw was not a small frightened hobbit trying to hold a steady sword: it saw a great silent shape, cloaked in a grey shadow, looming against the wavering light behind; in one hand it held a sword, the very light of which was a bitter pain, the other was clutched at its breast, but held concealed some nameless menace of power and doom.

* He was able to give up the Ring to Frodo fairly easily, although for a moment he "felt reluctant to give up the
Ring and burden his master with it again," presumably a last effort on the Ring's part to appeal to the one central guiding principle in Sam at this moment: his love for his master.








Brethil
Half-elven


Mar 24 2013, 12:01am

Post #15 of 130 (558 views)
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I love the examples you list [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

* He was able to give up the Ring to Frodo fairly easily, although for a moment he "felt reluctant to give up the
Ring and burden his master with it again," presumably a last effort on the Ring's part to appeal to the one central guiding principle in Sam at this moment: his love for his master.






Particularly this one, with its interpretation: the cunning of the Ring and it's ability to work on the soul of a target individual - like it was used in film to Aragorn, "blessss usss..."

Very nice, thanks.Smile

Hell hath no fury like a Dragon who is missing a cup.


Elizabeth
Valinor


Mar 24 2013, 12:13am

Post #16 of 130 (575 views)
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Do you know any example of this other than Bombadil? [In reply to] Can't Post

And Bombadil is really the antithesis of "strong willed" in a way, although he is certainly "the Master" of his domain. My reading of the Ring's lack of effect on Bombadil is that he is a different kind of creature (not Elf, Man, Hobbit, Dwarf, etc.) on whom the Ring is simply ineffective.








Otaku-sempai
Half-elven


Mar 24 2013, 12:34am

Post #17 of 130 (553 views)
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Welll, I didn't cite Bombadil as an example... [In reply to] Can't Post

However, Tom is certainly an interesting case. As a near equal to Sauron, he does display a unique immunitiy to the effects of the Ring. There is (as I previously noted) Sauron himself. We don't have many other individuals who were ever shown to wear the One Ring, so my premise is highly speculative. I expect that any of the most prominent members of the White Council could gain seeming control over it and its abilities (expecially Lady Galadriel, Gandalf or Saruman); although, they would ultimately become corrupted by the Ring. Aragorn could probably gain such control as well. Basically, anyone who, through possession of the Master Ring, would become Sauron's equal or better.

'There are older and fouler things than Orcs in the deep places of the world.' - Gandalf the Grey, The Fellowship of the Ring


Silverlode
Forum Admin / Moderator


Mar 24 2013, 4:14am

Post #18 of 130 (545 views)
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Since no other being ever wore it... [In reply to] Can't Post

aside from Sauron, Isildur, three hobbit-kind, and Bombadil (unknown kind) it would be difficult to prove anything. However, Galadriel seems to think that it would make her "beautiful and terrible" and that all would love her and despair, which would seem to indicate that her subjects would be able to see her. Otherwise, the beauty wouldn't matter anymore. Wink

My personal theory regarding the invisibility power of the Ring is simply that there are two worlds, the Seen (Physical) and the Unseen (Spiritual) and the Ring's power lies firstly on the Unseen plane, affecting the minds and hearts of those in its power and increasing the effect of the wearer's will on others. Beings who have power mainly in the Seen, such as humans and hobbits, are drawn into the Unseen by the power of the Ring (the Ringwraiths also underwent this effect), while beings who already have power in both realms (Elves, Maiar) would be able to have more control over the effects as well as the powers of the Ring. This seems to me consistent with most of the "magic" in Tolkien. In general, I think it is derivative of spiritual power which some races have in greater measure. The average race of Men does not seem to have spiritual power, and thus dabbling in "magic" is forbidden to them. But the Half-Elven, by virtue of their Elvish heritage, retain some measure of this power. For instance, Aragorn has some Elvish traits and skills (in medicine, for instance) and is able to control the Palantir by virtue of his right and his bloodline (spiritual authority), while Denethor, possessing less authority in the Unseen world, could look in it but not wrest it away from Sauron's control.

I'm trying and failing to remember if invisibility is ever mentioned in context to the dwarven rings.

Silverlode






Elizabeth
Valinor


Mar 24 2013, 4:34am

Post #19 of 130 (535 views)
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Galadriel would be "beautiful and terrible" [In reply to] Can't Post

...mainly to her Elves, I suspect, who (according to your scheme, which I agree with) are equally in the spirit world and therefore would see her even when she's wearing the Ring.

But, as we've seen in the case of Frodo, she wouldn't necessarily have needed to wear the Ring all the time in order to wield its power, and when she's not wearing it, everyone could see her. Whether she would still be "terrible" at this time it's hard to guess.








Maciliel
Tol Eressea


Mar 24 2013, 4:37am

Post #20 of 130 (549 views)
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re invisibility and dwarves [In reply to] Can't Post

 
not sure if a ring would make a dwarf invisible, but a door made by a dwarf is invisible (when shut).

frolicing aside, i quite like your take on the power of the ring, as it relates to "magic" and the races, and spiritual authority. which may relate to the "grace" topic on another thread.

many thanks for the interesting thoughts.

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


Maciliel
Tol Eressea


Mar 24 2013, 4:41am

Post #21 of 130 (547 views)
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it's funny [In reply to] Can't Post

 
it's funny that galadriel would think the ring would make her beautiful, when she already has ample feedback from her race that her physical attractiveness is held in high esteem. how much more beautiful could galadriel get?

it also invites the wondering... if galadriel thinks that the ring would make her beautiful/more beautiful.... is the ring then reflecting her desires?

we know that most of her life she has pursued power and lordship (and achieved much good, as a benevolent and wise ruler), so the power aspect isn't surprising. but, with this interpretation, the beauty aspect is (at least to me).


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


CuriousG
Valinor


Mar 24 2013, 5:46am

Post #22 of 130 (509 views)
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Wouldn't Sauron want to be invisible? [In reply to] Can't Post

Great points all around, especially regarding the Nazgul.

I would think that Sauron would have wanted to be invisible right before he had the Ring cut from his finger, and if anyone could make it do that, its maker should have. In another situation, Gandalf entered Dol Guldur in disguise to spy on the Necromancer--disguised, not invisible, though the latter would have been safer.

As for the Three Rings, their wearers are able to keep them invisible, but rings are small things to begin with.

Which brings me back to stature. I wonder if great beings like Sauron, Gandalf, and Galadriel (Bombadil too) are too great to be disguised by a ring's little trick, because it maybe is just a little trick for non-powerful types. Maybe people that are powerful in the realms of the Seen and Unseen can't be made invisible the way little people can be because their existence is too great to conceal.


CuriousG
Valinor


Mar 24 2013, 5:50am

Post #23 of 130 (574 views)
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Pretty girl with a ring [In reply to] Can't Post

My guess is that she didn't want to become physically more beautiful, she wanted her beauty to take on a bewitching power over its beholder. She talks about becoming "beautiful and terrible." She wants to overwhelm with her beauty the way Sauron does with fear, and enslave people with beauty ("all shall love me and despair") the way he does with terror.


ElendilTheShort
Gondor


Mar 24 2013, 9:27am

Post #24 of 130 (514 views)
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Invisibility has nothing to do with spiritual stature [In reply to] Can't Post

it is a side effect on mortals as it causes them to exist in the spirit world. Remember Frodo can clearly see Glorfindel at the Ford of Brunien when he wears the One Ring as elves of Valinor are at once in the physical and spiritual world, so one of them that wore it, it may be guessed would not turn invisible. Your OP about Sauron gaining size and (I assume) physical strength when wearing the One Ring is not evident in any writing of JRRT.


Brethil
Half-elven


Mar 24 2013, 3:05pm

Post #25 of 130 (538 views)
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Nice point Maciliel! [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
it's funny that galadriel would think the ring would make her beautiful, when she already has ample feedback from her race that her physical attractiveness is held in high esteem. how much more beautiful could galadriel get?

it also invites the wondering... if galadriel thinks that the ring would make her beautiful/more beautiful.... is the ring then reflecting her desires?
.






Oh that's a wonderful point, Angelic that even those we perceive as perfect might still have their Achilles heel, and the Ring unerringly seeks it out....the original drive of Tolkien's Darkness to want more than you have!

Hell hath no fury like a Dragon who is missing a cup.

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