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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Reading Room:
Mirkwood Spiders and Sauron's forces

Victariongreyjoy
Lorien


Dec 25 2018, 7:27pm

Post #1 of 5 (591 views)
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Mirkwood Spiders and Sauron's forces Can't Post

If the army of Dol Guldur or Isengard's Uruk-Hai encountered the Mirkwood Spiders, with one of the nazgul as their commanders, would the spiders swear their allegiance to Sauron?


CuriousG
Half-elven


Dec 26 2018, 12:19am

Post #2 of 5 (559 views)
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I somehow think of the spiders as free agents [In reply to] Can't Post

though I can't support that with anything. I also think of them as homebound, so possibly they would swear allegiance, but they wouldn't go on the march to fight in Gondor, just agree to catch and eat good guys going through Mirkwood (which they would do anyway).


No One in Particular
Rivendell


Dec 26 2018, 2:39am

Post #3 of 5 (549 views)
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Spiders [In reply to] Can't Post

I would assume that if Sauron bent his will towards them, he could subjugate them. He just didn't really need to.

While you live, shine
Have no grief at all
Life exists only for a short while
And time demands an end.
Seikilos Epitaph


squire
Half-elven


Dec 26 2018, 3:05am

Post #4 of 5 (549 views)
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"Cannot people imagine things hostile to men and hobbits who prey on them without being in league with the Devil!" [In reply to] Can't Post

Tolkien tended to reject the idea that Sauron was the 'evil boss of Middle-earth', such that every bad guy or creature was actually or potentially his tool. As he put it at one point, after hearing the BBC radio adaptation of Lord of the Rings in the mid-1950s:
"...worse still was the announcer's preliminary remarks that ... Willowman was an ally of Mordor (!!). Cannot people imagine things hostile to men and hobbits who prey on them without being in league with the Devil!" - JRRT Letters, #175.
Then as far as the spiders of Mirkwood are concerned, specifically: we might recall that Shelob in LotR, their ostensible 'mother', was anything but a sworn vassal of Sauron's even as she lived directly in his shadow after he returned to Mordor. And her mother, Ungoliant, clearly regarded the greater Dark Lord, Morgoth, as her own tool in her quest to consume the light of all the world. So even without regard for Tolkien's own dislike for uniform evil hierarchies, we can well imagine that the spiders of Mirkwood would not pay the slightest attention to any orc armies or Nazgul that might come tripping through their hunting grounds!



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


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No One in Particular
Rivendell


Dec 27 2018, 12:05am

Post #5 of 5 (519 views)
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Spider in service to Sauron [In reply to] Can't Post

Quite true: I don't necessarily think Sauron had done so, I merely state he most likely could. And I stand by that. Smile

While you live, shine
Have no grief at all
Life exists only for a short while
And time demands an end.
Seikilos Epitaph

 
 

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