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Silmarillion discussion schedule chapter 20 Nirnaeth Arnoediad part two

Hamfast Gamgee
Gondor

Jul 12 2013, 11:21pm


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Silmarillion discussion schedule chapter 20 Nirnaeth Arnoediad part two Can't Post

The greatest battle of the age!

Or at the least the most tragic. At the start there is a nasty incident involving the execution of Gelmir. Quite a bloody one, really! I never like reading that bit. Still, it has the desired effect and the army of Fingon attacks in force, lead by Gelmir's brother, Gwindor. They charge so hard that they come to the gates of Angband but are there trapped. That reminds me a little of Feanor's orignal tactics just to charge and get at Angband. The narrator is very scathing of Feanor's efforts but here says that Morgoth's plans, 'nearly went awry,' or possibly as Gwindor was a bit hot at the death of his brother he was forgiven.

Morgoth lets loose his main force from many holes and the battle begins in earnest. The host of Fingon retreats over the sands until he is met by his brother, Turgon were they have a meeting were they are 'glad,' amidst all the battle. Nice to have a little human touch amongst all of the bloodshed. Though by now they might have been regretting following Feanor out of Valinor. Or were they? They might have thought that at least they had a go against Morgoth.

Fingon is re-inforced finally by Maedhros and the sons of Feanor. Now it is the turn of the hosts of Angband to waver and some are turning to flight. The narrative says that some say that even then the host of Fingon might have won the day. Maybe, but even so it would have been a greater effort to have taken Angband with Morgoth inside! especially as earlier it is said that the war against Morgoth was in vain. Perhaps there would just have been another siege, but Morgoth would have regained his strength.

Anyway, Morgoth losses his last strength and Angband is emptied with Wolves, Wolf-riders, dragons and Balrogs. But did the Balrogs fly? Actually, did the dragons? They were not of the winged variety but perhaps they could hop a bit on their own turf. Or possibly Morgoth was dependent upon bats or crows for his ariel force. Still, this is a considerable force. Remember that in Lotr Gandalf says that even one Balrog is invincible to mortal weapons one can only speculate as how powerful a few in an army would be!

The new men are found to be treacherous. Well, we were warned about this at the start of the chapter with the idea that Morgoth sent his spies and agents to deceive people in Maedhras's union. Maglor slays Ulfast, but as we later read, this doesn't do those that live under the Easterlings much good. The sons of Feanor retreat away from the battle. Hmmmm, their oath says nothing about them acting like cowardly custards when it suits, does it?

The Dwarves get an honourable mention. But for them, Glaurung and his brood would have withered the Noldor away. But they have good armour and masks that withstand the Dragons flames. Azaghal, lord of Belegost, wounds Glaurung, forcing the Dragon to flee though it costs the Dwarf-lord his own life. I wonder if Azaghal was an ancestor of Durin? Perhaps we should have heard a bit more about this heroic Dwarf. But unfortunately with his death, the Dwarves depart. Unlike the men as we will hear about in a moment.

The rest of the battle is a rout. Fingon meets his death at the hands of two Balrogs. Poor chap, he doesn't remain king of the Noldor for very long! Turgon is persuaded by Hurin and Huor to retreat. Huor says that from him, Morgoth's doom will come. Pay attention to that one for later, people! But as he retreats, the men of Dor-lomin cover their tracks with their own lives. Huor is slain by an arrow a bit like King Harold at Hastings in 1066. The rest make a shield wall and defend themselves to the last man, literally. Now I can think of two cases this reminds me off, one in Tolkien that nearly happened and one famous Saxon case were this happened which Tolkien as an Anglo-Saxon scholar would clearly have known about. Last of all to survive is Hurin who is taken alive.

Next thread, the aftermarth!

Subject User Time
Silmarillion discussion schedule chapter 20 Nirnaeth Arnoediad part two Hamfast Gamgee Send a private message to Hamfast Gamgee Jul 12 2013, 11:21pm
    I like the bit about the dwarves… noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Jul 13 2013, 4:45pm
        Azaghal's loss Brethil Send a private message to Brethil Jul 13 2013, 5:21pm
            Also, the dragon fight gives "hot dwarves" a different meaning noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Jul 14 2013, 4:25pm
                You are quite right as usual!!!! Brethil Send a private message to Brethil Jul 14 2013, 4:28pm
                    Hmm, it's so hot that there's a lot of melting chocolate around here!!// elaen32 Send a private message to elaen32 Jul 14 2013, 5:30pm
                        One of the best things for chocolate to do! Brethil Send a private message to Brethil Jul 14 2013, 7:28pm
    Gelmir Ardamírë Send a private message to Ardamírë Jul 13 2013, 5:40pm
        Gwindor and Fingon Brethil Send a private message to Brethil Jul 13 2013, 6:25pm
            Wonderful Ardamírë Send a private message to Ardamírë Jul 14 2013, 5:38pm
            Great connection on the banners. Sad too. // CuriousG Send a private message to CuriousG Jul 14 2013, 10:10pm
                It is sad - Brethil Send a private message to Brethil Jul 14 2013, 11:46pm
        Huor's insight Brethil Send a private message to Brethil Jul 14 2013, 12:50am
            Such a beautiful passage Ardamírë Send a private message to Ardamírë Jul 14 2013, 5:59pm
                So much prophesy about Earandil Brethil Send a private message to Brethil Jul 14 2013, 7:52pm
                    Huor's prophecy CuriousG Send a private message to CuriousG Jul 17 2013, 11:22am
                        Earandil and the Sea Brethil Send a private message to Brethil Jul 17 2013, 11:35am
    The Battle rages Brethil Send a private message to Brethil Jul 13 2013, 6:19pm
    The good guys, always outnumbered... noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Jul 14 2013, 4:39pm
    The all-or-nothing battle CuriousG Send a private message to CuriousG Jul 14 2013, 10:30pm

 
 
 

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