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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Reading Room:
In early drafts, there are different explanations

noWizardme
Grey Havens


Jan 22, 10:49pm


Views: 23
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In early drafts, there are different explanations [In reply to] Can't Post

(I have been reading The Return of The Shadow, an analysis of Tolkien's early drafts of this section of the story. It offers another kind of answer to this question).

In the first drafts, the hobbits go to Weathertop explicitly for a rendezvous with Gandalf: he's been in Bree very shortly before them, & leaves a message for them setting up a Weathertop meeting. While Gandalf has been forced to move on from Weathertop by the time the hobbits arrive, he's left them a stash of supplies.


In later revisions, the stash of supplies belongs to Aragorn 's predecessor in the plot, the Ranger-hobbit Trotter. Going to Weathertop partly to reprovision from his secret supply dump there would make a sensible motive: the hobbits are having to walk, travel light, and want to avoid wasting time hunting or gathering. A supply cache could therefore be very helpful, and worth a little time and risk to retrieve. But for some reason Tolkien dumped the dump: the unexplained wood pile in the dell is all that is left of Trotter's stash in the published version of the story.

In all the versions the hobbits are attacked at Weathertop - so it's a key episode. Maybe it's also one that stayed a fixed point in how Tolkien imagined the story, even as Gandalf's movements and the nature and actions of the Black Riders changed considerably.

Disclaimers: The words of noWizardme may stand on their heads! I'm often wrong about things, and its fun to be taught more....

"nowimë I am in the West, Furincurunir to the Dwarves (or at least, to their best friend) and by other names in other lands. Mostly they just say 'Oh no it's him - look busy!' "
Or "Hold off! unhand me, grey-beard loon!"

Subject User Time
Why go to Weathertop ? noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Oct 30 2013, 10:14pm
    Hmm, yes.... elaen32 Send a private message to elaen32 Oct 30 2013, 10:43pm
        Best meeting place available? CuriousG Send a private message to CuriousG Nov 3 2013, 2:54pm
            on balance... noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Nov 5 2013, 7:30pm
                Thanks to this discussion I've come to a theory... noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Nov 10 2013, 12:16pm
                    Not bad at all. In fact, very good. sador Send a private message to sador Nov 10 2013, 12:48pm
                        Yes, it all becomes an enjoyable exercise about who knows (or guesses) what... noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Nov 10 2013, 1:05pm
                    Although Gandalf wasn't trying to find Aragorn Hamfast Gamgee Send a private message to Hamfast Gamgee Nov 10 2013, 9:00pm
                        Not trying to find Aragorn… noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Nov 10 2013, 9:06pm
    I've wondered about that as well! Hamfast Gamgee Send a private message to Hamfast Gamgee Oct 31 2013, 12:47am
    To rendezvous with other Rangers? Darkstone Send a private message to Darkstone Oct 31 2013, 8:18pm
    maybe.. book Gandalf Send a private message to book Gandalf Nov 3 2013, 8:40pm
    It's no use groping in the dark sador Send a private message to sador Nov 4 2013, 7:55am
    I think Aragorn stated... RosieLass Send a private message to RosieLass Nov 5 2013, 5:58pm
    maybe we should have a "conspiracy theories" subthread? noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Nov 5 2013, 7:34pm
        Worse CuriousG Send a private message to CuriousG Nov 5 2013, 10:07pm
            That's how Aragorn kept getting the Yellow Jersey… noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Nov 6 2013, 6:26pm
                An attempt to hang-glide to Mordor… noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Nov 6 2013, 9:58pm
        Well.... Darkstone Send a private message to Darkstone Nov 5 2013, 10:50pm
    Hopefully coherent ramblings Rembrethil Send a private message to Rembrethil Nov 5 2013, 10:04pm
    In early drafts, there are different explanations noWizardme Send a private message to noWizardme Jan 22, 10:49pm

 
 
 

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