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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Reading Room:
to be with my Mothers

Alveric
Rivendell


Jul 30, 3:52pm

Post #1 of 4 (576 views)
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to be with my Mothers Can't Post

There are numerous references in the books to the afterlife as going to be with one's fathers. e.g. Theoden's dying words, "I go to my fathers." Or of Balin, "Here he must lie in the halls of his fathers."
It always seems like it's men dying and going to be with their fathers. Can anyone think of a comparable saying about women?
(I'm not complaining about the Patriarchy here. Indeed, in the Chinese translations I'm working on, the afterlife lineage system is also heavily male-oriented.) (Still, I wonder, if Eowyn had actually died in battle, would she have broken that glass ceiling?)

Alveric


Ataahua
Superuser / Moderator


Jul 31, 5:06am

Post #2 of 4 (544 views)
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That's an intriguing observation. [In reply to] Can't Post

I wonder if it's due to men being the head of the household, and any 'hall' in the afterlife still being considered as under his authority? So mother, siblings etc, would be there too, but not with their names on the property ownership papers, as it were. ;)

Celebrimbor: "Pretty rings..."
Dwarves: "Pretty rings..."
Men: "Pretty rings..."
Sauron: "Mine's better."

"Ah, how ironic, the addictive qualities of Sauron’s master weapon led to its own destruction. Which just goes to show, kids - if you want two small and noble souls to succeed on a mission of dire importance... send an evil-minded beggar with them too." - Gandalf's Diaries, final par, by Ufthak.


Ataahua's stories


CuriousG
Half-elven


Jul 31, 11:50am

Post #3 of 4 (517 views)
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To lie with Mother Earth? [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't know enough to answer your OP, though Ataahua's reply made me nod and think, "Men usually own the property and did the physical labor, so it's nearly always a man's hut/house/castle that one would go to, regardless of gender."
But I wondered about the prevalence of thinking of the Earth as female, and if there might be references in folklore to "joining Mother Gaia" or something similar? All that is outside Tolkien, though.
The strong impression I have of one of the other rare prominent females in LOTR, Galadriel, is that she'll be ultimately reunited with her father Finarfin and any reincarnated brothers like Finrod. Who was her mother again? (See? The mother just doesn't seem to play much of a role.)


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jul 31, 2:29pm

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About Mothers [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't recall any particularly apt sayings or proverbs about mothers in the legendarium, but there are a few others:

Mothers are fonder than fathers of their children because they are more certain they are their own. ~Aristotle

Mother is the name for God in the lips and hearts of little children. ~William Makepeace Thackeray (and paraphrased in the comic and the movie The Crow)

God could not be everywhere, so he created mothers. ~Jewish Proverb

A man loves his sweetheart the most, his wife the best, but his mother the longest. ~Irish Proverb

Like mother, like daughter. ~ 16th century Proverb

Oh! There is this:

Onen i-Estel Edain, ú-chebin estel amin. ("I gave Hope to the Dúnedain, I have kept none for myself.") ~ J.R.R. Tolkien

"For a brief time I was here; and for a brief time I mattered." - Harlan Ellison

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Jul 31, 2:40pm)

 
 

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