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When Gimli asks Aragorn to keep the Army of The Dead - here is why it would be a bad idea


Aug 10 2021, 2:52pm

Post #1 of 5 (2198 views)
When Gimli asks Aragorn to keep the Army of The Dead - here is why it would be a bad idea Can't Post

From Quora

Hilário Alencar
Middle-earth expert.May 23, 2020
In Lord of the Rings, what would happen if the Army of the Dead was sent to Mordor to defeat Sauron and his armies instead of fighting at Gondor?
Here’s what would happen:

"First, it is worth noting that spirits are physically impotent (that's why some of them invade bodies), they cannot hurt the living, only terrify them, although Tolkien says that the Oathbreakers broke Baldor's legs.

Anyway, if the Oathbreakers went beyond its oath and attacked Mordor, I don't think there were too many of them to such a task, Mordor was a very great realm with hundreds of forts and some very strong places like Barad-dűr, Minas Morgul and the Black Gate defended by countless orcs, men and evil creatures.

At first, they could terrify the Orcs and Men, but not an entire army. But even all of Mordor's military force would be useless because spirits are indestructible by any power except Eru.

Here comes the power of Sauron, in the past naked spirits were dominated by Morgoth. Sauron however developed necromancy, which in Middle Earth is the art of imprisoning spirits in bodies, and he taught this practice to some of his servants.

Some were enslaved by the Dark Lord and do his work still, though he himself is gone. They will not speak truth or wisdom. To call on them is folly. To attempt to master them and to make them servants of one own's will is wickedness. Such practices are of Morgoth; and the necromancers are of the host of Sauron his servant.

Or the Houseless may plead for shelter, and if it is admitted, then it will seek to enslave its host and use both his will and his body for its own purposes. It is said that Sauron did these things, and taught his followers how to achieve them.

It was in this way that they created the Barrow-Wights. If they reached the Nazgűl, or the Mouth of Sauron and others like that they were in danger of being imprisoned.

And if they reached Sauron they would be just naked minds in the face of the terror of the Great eye.

A cold voice answered: ‘Come not between the Nazgűl and his prey! Or he will not slay thee in thy turn. He will bear thee away to the houses of lamentation, beyond all darkness, where thy flesh shall be devoured, and thy shrivelled mind be left naked to the Lidless Eye.’

But the worst is that the Oathbreakers were previously Sauron worshipers. So if they saw him again, they would most likely panic, if that is possible.

It definitely wouldn't be a good idea on Aragorn's part."

75.3K viewsView 463 upvotesView shares · Answer requested by
Matthew Culbertson

(This post was edited by Eruonen on Aug 10 2021, 2:54pm)


Aug 10 2021, 9:27pm

Post #2 of 5 (2166 views)
Aragorn's necromancy is still probably amateur, in comparison [In reply to] Can't Post

When I've thought about this question before, I finish up in a similar position to the poster on Quora. Aragorn is, for all intents and purposes, a novice necromancer acting within specific parameters with the Dead Men of Dunharrow, Powerful but prescribed. Sauron, on the other hand, is the original necromancer, The Necromancer. If it came to it, Sauron would have prevailed, in my view, in any contest involving control over the Houseless.

As to the overall impact on the War of the Ring, any assault on Mordor would always surely have been a feint - Dead Men or no Dead Men. The main game was destroying the One Ring. Entangling Sauron in a contest of wills over control of disembodied spirits would have been a great distraction but that was achieved by more mundane force of arms, as it turned out, in Tolkien's narrative.

On the topic of the fear that the Dead Men inspired in the various servants and minions of Sauron, I note that in the earlier drafts of the chapter 'The Last Debate' (The War of the Ring / HoMe VIII), Tolkien drew a distinction between the Haradrim and Corsairs on the one hand, and "orcs or folk bred in the Black Land". The latter group, it is implied, were less susceptible to the terror of the Dead.

And on a further side note, nice to see references to Morgoth's Ring make it onto Quora!

Welcome to the Mordorfone network, where we put the 'hai' back into Uruk


Aug 10 2021, 10:34pm

Post #3 of 5 (2162 views)
The sword of Elendil seems to have been a needed tool in the necromancy control [In reply to] Can't Post

....I assume because it was imbued with Elendil's curse using The One Ring. Would Sauron have been able to remove that curse effect? If its origin is in Sauron it seems possible.

Hamfast Gamgee
Grey Havens

Aug 17 2021, 10:09am

Post #4 of 5 (1868 views)
Actually [In reply to] Can't Post

With Mordor's ringwraiths on one side and the paths of the dead people on the other one might well have had a kind of a wraith war. Which one would have out-dreaded the other?


Aug 21 2021, 8:23pm

Post #5 of 5 (1711 views)
A lot of wraiths to choose from - [In reply to] Can't Post

Spirits from the Barrow Downs
Spirits from the Dead Marshes
Dead Men of Dunharrow


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