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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
How did the elves of Mirkwood/Thranduil's Halls light their ceiling lamps in the movies?

Cirashala
Wakandian


Oct 8 2020, 4:28am

Post #1 of 11 (2623 views)
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How did the elves of Mirkwood/Thranduil's Halls light their ceiling lamps in the movies? Can't Post

We all know that elves, in the film universe at least, can perform quite a few acrobatic feats...but without a bat to hitchhike on (yes, that was sarcastic), how do you think they lit the ceiling lamps we see in the films?

I've got a couple of working theories. First off, if they used lamp oil, it would be a royal pain in the butt to try and get them down and refill them each day (or week or whatever). Many of them are significantly out of reach and impossible to access easily.

My theories are:

1. Light crystals, potentially a rarity in Middle-earth (I also have this notion that the dwarves used said crystals to better light their work when doing fine, delicate jewelry).

OR perhaps

2. Bioluminescent fungi? We know Mirkwood forest had a plethora of fungi species, and as I recently (about two months ago) got to go on an old 1880's gold mine tour here in north Idaho in the mountains (VERY cool, btw. If anyone happens to find themselves up here on vacation or passing through, I highly recommend the Crystal Gold Mine tour off Interstate 90 as you pass through Kellogg, Idaho. It's not expensive but it's worth it!), I learned that caves and mines, especially ones where there is water present (in the Idaho mine's case, it has a high water table because it's next to a river, so the mine was damp) and in Thranduil's Halls' case, the Forest River ran through it, which caused more humidity, which (same as the Idaho mine) caused some fungi growth inside the mine/halls.

So given the prevalence of fungi in Mirkwood and the Elvenking's Halls, bioluminescent fungi might be a potential possibility for use in the lamps.

What are your thoughts? I know in the book the elves extinguished their torches immediately upon the dwarves crashing their feasting in the woods, but rather than magic (as Bilbo interpreted it), it could also have been just snuffing them out tiki-torch style by someone next to the lamps/torches when they saw the dwarves.

Of course, there is a third option:

3. Elven magic. Or rather, as Tolkien describes it, more elven abilities outside of mortal capability than actual "magic" in that sense Smile

Still, either way, the lamps are clearly tangible. Thus, they had to get them up there somehow (presumably when building/delving the halls).

So how do you think Thranduil's elves lit (or kept lit) those great cavern ceiling lamps?

My writing and novels:

My Hobbit Fanfiction

My historical novel print and kindle version

My historical novels ebook version compatible with all ereaders

You can also find my novel at most major book retailers online (and for those outside the US who prefer a print book, you can find the print version at Book Depository). Search "Amazing Grace Amanda Longpre'" to find it.

Happy reading everyone!


(This post was edited by Cirashala on Oct 8 2020, 4:29am)


No One in Particular
Fantastic Four


Oct 9 2020, 12:45am

Post #2 of 11 (2560 views)
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Lamps [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm currently in the middle of the Lays of Beleriand and this question reminds me of the bluish lamp of Flinding when he was found by Beleg. It's making was a secret that was never revealed and was closely guarded (by the thralls of Bauglir).

This would stray into Elven magic territory but the lamps could something along those lines. Doesn't explain how they accessed the ceiling lamps-maybe just free standing really tall ladders.

Or, Elves being Elves, with perfect balance and dexterity and all, a bunch of them might just stand on each others' shoulders until you had a tall enough stack to reach the ceiling. Cool

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


Chen G.
Defender

Oct 9 2020, 4:45pm

Post #3 of 11 (2508 views)
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The Unfinished Tales [In reply to] Can't Post

Mention Feanorian light, and the filmmakers clearly remembered this for Thranduil's realm. In the behind-the-scenes they specifically talk about the magically-glowing amber bulbs.

As for how they hung them, the caves are clearly not entirely devoid of sunlight, so there are shafts leading outside through which a roped Elf could spelunk.


(This post was edited by Chen G. on Oct 9 2020, 4:46pm)


Hamfast Gamgee
X-men

Oct 10 2020, 7:11am

Post #4 of 11 (2463 views)
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Frogs! [In reply to] Can't Post

Special high-jumping Mirkwood frogs. What happened was they took some frogs inside the lamps which leapt up high to the ceiling, ecreted something sticky and froggy, eat some flies then bounced down again with the lamps stuck on said ceiling, And strangely enough it was totally natural with no magic involved. Oh, and the head frog was called Freddie. Also you would be pleased to know that no frogs where hurt in the lighting of the lamps.


Cirashala
Wakandian


Oct 10 2020, 8:27pm

Post #5 of 11 (2404 views)
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Cool! [In reply to] Can't Post

So an amber light crystal then?

Could you maybe find a clip of that behind-the-scenes footage? I'd like to watch it Smile

My writing and novels:

My Hobbit Fanfiction

My historical novel print and kindle version

My historical novels ebook version compatible with all ereaders

You can also find my novel at most major book retailers online (and for those outside the US who prefer a print book, you can find the print version at Book Depository). Search "Amazing Grace Amanda Longpre'" to find it.

Happy reading everyone!


Cirashala
Wakandian


Oct 10 2020, 8:29pm

Post #6 of 11 (2404 views)
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Is Jeremiah Freddie's second in command? [In reply to] Can't Post

The mental image of this is quite hysterical Tongue

My writing and novels:

My Hobbit Fanfiction

My historical novel print and kindle version

My historical novels ebook version compatible with all ereaders

You can also find my novel at most major book retailers online (and for those outside the US who prefer a print book, you can find the print version at Book Depository). Search "Amazing Grace Amanda Longpre'" to find it.

Happy reading everyone!


Chen G.
Defender

Oct 10 2020, 8:52pm

Post #7 of 11 (2399 views)
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There you go [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
So an amber light crystal then?

Could you maybe find a clip of that behind-the-scenes footage? I'd like to watch it Smile


https://youtu.be/BxjUM_IQUFM?list=PL2TTY6XAFPgwNANzfeqRSPV_C8MdNau-Z&t=264


Lissuin
Wakandian


Oct 11 2020, 1:22am

Post #8 of 11 (2369 views)
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Fairies! [In reply to] Can't Post



Thranduíl would have been no where without Tinkerbell and her pals. Need lanterns installed in your new, fancy-shmancy cavern ceilings? A little sprinkling of fairy dust and Legolas might actually be able to do those gravity-defying stunts to some purpose, thanks very much. Need those lanterns lit at night? Make them inviting little fairy parlors for late-night board games or poker parties. Provide drinks and snacks.



And yeah yeah, I know we don't think much of magical fairies around here. Smile


Cirashala
Wakandian


Oct 11 2020, 1:31am

Post #9 of 11 (2368 views)
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LOL [In reply to] Can't Post

That's great! Sly

My writing and novels:

My Hobbit Fanfiction

My historical novel print and kindle version

My historical novels ebook version compatible with all ereaders

You can also find my novel at most major book retailers online (and for those outside the US who prefer a print book, you can find the print version at Book Depository). Search "Amazing Grace Amanda Longpre'" to find it.

Happy reading everyone!


Na Vedui
Defender


Oct 26 2020, 9:18pm

Post #10 of 11 (1623 views)
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Lots of ... [In reply to] Can't Post

.... glow-worms. Employed several to a lamp, working in rotation so they all get rest-breaks, with an agreed signal for instant lights-out in case of intruders.


Cirashala
Wakandian


Oct 26 2020, 9:20pm

Post #11 of 11 (1620 views)
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Nice! // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

My writing and novels:

My Hobbit Fanfiction

My historical novel print and kindle version

My historical novels ebook version compatible with all ereaders

You can also find my novel at most major book retailers online (and for those outside the US who prefer a print book, you can find the print version at Book Depository). Search "Amazing Grace Amanda Longpre'" to find it.

Happy reading everyone!

 
 

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