Our Sponsor Sideshow Collectibles Send us News
Lord of the Rings Tolkien
Search Tolkien
Lord of The RingsTheOneRing.net - Forged By And For Fans Of JRR Tolkien
Lord of The Rings Serving Middle-Earth Since The First Age

Lord of the Rings Movie News - J.R.R. Tolkien
Do you enjoy the 100% volunteer, not for profit services of TheOneRing.net?
Consider a donation!

  Main Index   Search Posts   Who's Online   Log in
The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Reading Room:
children of hurin chapter discussion: the death of beleg
First page Previous page 1 2 3 Next page Last page  View All

sador
Half-elven


Jun 8 2014, 2:53pm

Post #51 of 61 (113 views)
Shortcut
Answers (part I) [In reply to] Can't Post

1. is beleg's love and support for turin, whom many mortal readers find hard to love, a mirror of our own mortal intolerance for our own faults? a lesson that we need to love one another more mindfully?
Well, I'm not so sure. CuriousG in fact did label a comment of his as "racist" (an incorrect term, but you get his meaning). But yes, once he evolved from a wandering Noldorin hunter to Thingol's chief (or one of his two chief) thanes, his following Turin makes no sense. If nothing else, it is a desertion of duty - one which might take place in Arthurian romance, but not in anything which tries to resemble an actual realm at wartime.

And Mablung will repeat the same folly later after Morwen and Nienor are lost!

Speaking of Mablung, I wonder if Beleg would have been able to give an ubiased testimony regardingh Saeros? And on the other hand, would Nellas have dared to approach Mablung with her evidence?

2. or is beleg's love for turin unrelateble? is his love for turin too much a dictate of author intent: "turin inspired love in all -- i must have a character who depicts this love?" is beleg tolkien's literary factorum?
Well, one does wonder what these people all see in Turin. Not only Beleg, but even Gwindor. And why on middle-earth does Gwindor give Turin Anglachel? To avenge Beleg... of course, it ultimately does, but surely not in the way he meant?


Back to Beleg: I am a but unclear on why he had to take this magnificent blade with him, as a secondary weapon. Both it is not the kind of sword for such work, and it is also too heavy. What of the need for agility, or even balance? How can one bend a great bow properly when thus encumbered?
And how did the Orcs leave it behind when they looted Amon Rudh?


Gwindor
Gwindor is probably my favourite Elf, and definitely my favourite character in CoH.

Wait... what was that? Is he the one? Then why -
Well yes; and as you've asked me on a previous thread, and I am running out of time again, I'll just link to the previous time I told that highly-characteristic story.

I'll answer your questions regarding Gwindor (and Turin, and Anglachel) tomorrow, G-d willing; but I'll just make here four short comments:

1. I've never understood why some people blame him for losing the Nirnaeth - especially when Tolkien blames it on Uldor and his folk. And knowing that Morgoth had so many fire-wielding agents, hiding your numbers among the trees might be nice for camouflage, but once the enemy knows you're there... think Out of the Frying-pan Into the Fire.

But Turin was a real jerk in Nargothrond, when he taunted Gwindor with the Men of Hithlum not being afraid to fight, wasn't he? Esapecially when bearing in mind Hurin and Morwen's talk about the lands and honours they covet for their son.

2. In the latest version of thew story, Tolkien had decided to add another flourish to Gwindor's character, by having him wound his hand while escaping. This explains nicely why he cowered in the storm, why he gave Turin the sword rather than keeping it for himself, and why he was considered in Nargothrond to be no more of any use in battle.
But, in that case - just how could he help Beleg in carrying Turin out of the Orcs' camp?

3. Another question regarding this rescue - Beleg shot four wolf-sentinels silently. Good for him.
But didn't the other wolves sense that some of their own number had died? How do you just do this?
And didn't the orcs notice this when they woke up by the storm?

The fourth comment I was about to make was regarding Gwindor and his healing of Turin at Ivrin. But I see you;ve asked below about Fate, and these topic are intertwined. So tomorrow (I'm running late already).



Terazed
Bree

Jun 8 2014, 3:50pm

Post #52 of 61 (102 views)
Shortcut
Interpretations of myth [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
1. it is said in the texts that elves who escaped angband were moreoften never trusted again by other elves. was this because of their physical marring? their emotional marring? if elves are supposed to be great healers and full in wisdom, why is it that these escapees, who were so deserving of compassion and healing, were shunned?

2. did gwindor seem, after his ordeal, more mortal-like to other elves? he was ravaged and visibly changed. was he a reminder to his fellow elves of their ultimate fading?


I think one of the big differences between Beleg and Gwindor is their actual experience of human mortality. For Beleg it is more of an abstract intellectual and emotional puzzle that draws him in. He is drawn in to the bright but brief burning flame but can not truly understand until he has his death wound. Gwindor on the other hand has experienced a complete understanding of human mortality in Angband. He has had the full experience of his body decaying with every expectation that it would lead to his death. To put it in WW1 terms. Beleg is the teenage idealist that runs off to volunteer for the adventure at the start of WW1. Gwindor is the wounded teenager that comes back from the war with an unnatural understanding of his own mortality for his age which he can not bury by the usual techniques that teenagers use to convince themselves psychologically of their immortality.

are Turin's misfortunes morgoth, but his decision his alone?

When I look at myth I tend to see them through a modern anthropological lens via Wagner, Freud, Yung, Joyce, Mann, and Campbell. Before them the prevailing view was that all myths were explanations of the natural phenomenon of the world. So I usually see a curse as something psychological in the character or the author rather then an external agent. I am not sure Tolkien would view it that way. As a catholic living in the 21st century I am not all that big into the concept of an irredeemable curse. I am not sure Tolkien as a catholic writing one century earlier would think along the same lines. Then there comes the question of how much the intellectual environment he was living in was influencing him at this stage in his life vs how much his religious upbringing was.


Meneldor
Tol Eressea


Jun 8 2014, 9:34pm

Post #53 of 61 (95 views)
Shortcut
Nasssty swords punses! [In reply to] Can't Post

We hates them! And we'll always be making ugly faces whenever we reads of swordses with rat-tail tangs! Crazy


That's an interesting idea about mithril as the opposite of meteoric iron. It's also reversed from what I would expect; the ore that comes from the heavenly realms ought to be the good stuff, and what is dug from the dark places of the underworld ought to be evil, to my way of thinking. Assuming JRRT intended this juxtaposition, why do you think he would turn expectations on their heads?


They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; These see the works of the Lord, and His wonders in the deep.


Rembrethil
Tol Eressea


Jun 8 2014, 9:59pm

Post #54 of 61 (93 views)
Shortcut
Falling... [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, it seems to cause a lot of falls. Beleg, Eol, Gondolin, Turin, and others. Does it's physical fall from heaven carry into the symbolism of passing on its falls to others, whether their falls be in position or character? In the sketched outline of the Last Battle, it causes Morgoth's final fall too...

Falling everywhere!!

Call me Rem, and remember, not all who ramble are lost...Uh...where was I?


sador
Half-elven


Jun 9 2014, 3:34pm

Post #55 of 61 (92 views)
Shortcut
Answers (part II) [In reply to] Can't Post

Just answers this time, regarding Gwindor, Turin and Anglachel.

Gw1. it is said in the texts that elves who escaped angband were moreoften never trusted again by other elves. was this because of their physical marring? their emotional marring? if elves are supposed to be great healers and full in wisdom, why is it that these escapees, who were so deserving of compassion and healing, were shunned?
Well, the simple answer is that not knowing what was the process which turned Elves into Orcs (according to the version in the published Silmarillion), one could never know how far they were down that road.
There is also the question whether any have become traitors, and released as such (think Maeglin).
Also, those released, or even allowed to escape (like Gollum, in a later age), often were somehow branded by Evil and did its work. Like Hurin - andGollum too, had Providence not done some heavy duty work with him.
And this was also, no doubt, a part of the curse of Mandos.

Gw2. did gwindor seem, after his ordeal, more mortal-like to other elves? he was ravaged and visibly changed. was he a reminder to his fellow elves of their ultimate fading?
That's an intriguing suggestion!
But I don't quite like it, for the light in which it puts Finduilas. Was she another of those girls who only care for looks?
At least you explain why people do tend to look at others with such critical eyes. Somebody else who seems marred, reminds me of my own frality and mortality, and makes me uncomfortable, so I shum him/her. Isn't this pretty much the Darwinist theory of beauty?


Tu1. is the death of beleg just happenstance, or is this also the curse of morgoth at work?
For sure not!

First time is happenstance, second time is coincidence, third time is enemy action. So the question is whether you consider Saeros the first time, or begin your count with Forweg.

But seriously, I am reminded of Ulmo's words in Of Tuor and his Coming to Gondolin that "Mandos is still strong". Fate, or Doom, is one of the Valar - not Morgoth! And the Narn was written at about the same time, so it could be that this was Fate as a neutral force, as opposed to the Devil (Morgoth).
In that case, Ulmo becomes a personification of Grace, as expressed in water. Some Catholic image, I have no doubt.

Tu2. contrast turin with gwindor. does turin, with his superlative physical and charismatic attributes, seem more the elf than gwindor, who cowers in the storm and quails at the orcs (albeit thoroughly understandably)? does gwindor seem more edain-like in that moment?
No. Why?
It's just like Aragorn and Boromir holding their ground next to Gandalf on the Bridge of Khazad-dum, while Legolas was apparently the first on the other side. And Gandalf justified the course the elf had taken.
I do not think that being terrifed of the enemy you do know and which is near is an edainic-like trait. On the contrary, the reckless bravado seems to be more of one - and is definitely such in the heroic legends Tolkien had loved.

And don't forget that it is Gwindor who heals Turin, so he did retain something elvish in him.

An1. is anglachel imprinted with eol's dark, nasty, thoughts, which leads it to somehow purposefully cut turin, leading to beleg's death, slaying its master?
This is an odd developement indeed.
In a previous post (my first response to this thread), I've described the "history" of Gurthang. It appears that in the Narn, Tolkien had decided that such an evil sword could not be merely forged at Nargothrond, or even worse, be Beleg's own, insignificant one. So he added the tale of it being originally Eol's, and the story of Thingol's gift.
As was stated last week, this hold storyline shows Melian as her most Cassandraic - saying that the blade is evil, and that Beleg would lose it soon; and then the hero ignores her! (with no observable Turin-like qualities to explain his choice) - and them goes on to use it as a secondary weapon, and somehow keeps it when he falls into the hands of the Orcs in hand-to-hand combat. Wha - ?

On the other hand, Tolkien decided to discard the bloodthirsty reply of the sword to Turin before he commits suicide, giving it rather the role of the chorus in a Greek tragedy; so he endowed it with a conscience pining for the death's of Beleg (its "master"? Huh? See above) and Brandir. This seems to be the same blade which according to Gwindor mourns Beleg as much as Turin does, and therefore he keeps it in order to take revenge on the Orcs.
All well and good. But is this even remotely consistent with Melian's words of Eol's dark spirit residing in it?

An2. is anglachel imprinted with some dark force that was not eol's? was this sky-fallen iron a dark gift from morgoth? did this iron help to darken eol's heart (not the other way around)? if so, is anglachel doing morgoth's will, fulfilling the curse, with the injury of turin that leads to beleg's death?
Morgoth never controlled the sky. Even his winged dragons were only ready at the War of Wrath. So this definitely did not come from him.
I wonder if Tolkien had read American comic strips when he was an adult? I guess not; otherwise I would say this is ironfell from Krypton. Barring this possibility, I would consider it more likely to be sent by Manwe or Eru himself, thus accounting for the sword's curious moral core.
Or else Varda was in a hurry, and created the last star of the batch a bit too small, sticking the leftover at the top like an ovbersized mountain. But unfortunaely, it fell off...

Regarding the wounding of Beleg, Tolkien attributes it to Fate. A more mundane explanation would be that Beleg was simply inexperienced in cutting fetters with a heavy sword. Oops.


The curse - well, this depends pretty much on the two survivors' debate later in Nargothrond, doesn't it?
If Gwindor was right (and I think he was), the curse was in Turin's own person, and Beleg's slip was a natural mistake; the curse had to do only with Turin's being able to sieze the sword when waking in a sudden, and use it against his rescuer; perhaps also in his sleeping throughout being borne up the slope bu his friends.
But perhaps Turin had a point, when thinking that the curse had to do with his name. This is an ancient, pagan and less moral POV - but it is clearly expressed in The Hobbit for instance. So why not here?
In that case, one might guess that Beleg's telling Gwindor who it was he was seeking might have invoked the curse. Hmm.
It's possible, but I still prefer the other reading.

Thank you for leading us through this chapter!



Maciliel
Tol Eressea


Jun 10 2014, 4:44am

Post #56 of 61 (80 views)
Shortcut
re mithril / earth / good vs. meteor ore / heaven / evil [In reply to] Can't Post

 
now here's the thing... i don't necessarily think that tolkien thought about the origins and results consciously. he +may+ have.

i am making an observation, and thinking about these two metals and all the things we know of, within the universe tolkien created. tolkien may have had some intention there, or it may have been subconsciously constructed. or it may have just been neat happenstance.

agreed, one would think that the black metal, if it were innately evil, would come from the earth.

comets / meteors were, in olden times, often thought to be harbingers of doom. bad omens. i wonder if tolkien was consciously or unconsciously drawing upon that. i think the origin must have mattered, because he took time to create an origin that no other metal in middle-earth comes close to having.


cheers --

.


aka. fili orc-enshield
+++++++++++++++++++
the scene, as i understand it, is exceptionally well-written. fili (in sort of a callback to the scene with the eagles), calls out "thorRIIIIIIN!!!" just as he sees the pale orc veer in for the kill. he picks up the severed arm of an orc which is lying on the ground, swings it up in desperation, effectively blocking the pale orc's blow. and thus, forever after, fili is known as "fili orc-enshield."

this earns him deep respect from his hard-to-please uncle. as well as a hug. kili wipes his boots on the pale orc's glory box. -- maciliel telpemairo


Maciliel
Tol Eressea


Jun 11 2014, 12:39am

Post #57 of 61 (60 views)
Shortcut
falling [In reply to] Can't Post

 
[ rembrethil ]
Well, it seems to cause a lot of falls. Beleg, Eol, Gondolin, Turin, and others. Does it's physical fall from heaven carry into the symbolism of passing on its falls to others, whether their falls be in position or character? In the sketched outline of the Last Battle, it causes Morgoth's final fall too...

Falling everywhere!!
[ / rembrethiil ]

well, "falling" can have different meanings. it can mean death, and it can mean a loss of grace, prestige, power, regard.

beleg, eol, turin all fall in the sense that they died (although eol literally fell as well). gonolin falls, as in defeated.

interesting that in the sketched outline of the last battle to which you refer, anglachel / gurthang will deal the final blow to morgoth (is it so? i know turin is mentioned as being the deliverer of that blow... but is anglachel / gurthang to be the instrument?

i'm getting the feeling that anglachel / gurthang is really the sword equivalent of ungoliant. just wait until it gets a taste of vala blood. will that only increase its bloodlust to greater and more lofty thirsts?


cheers --

.


aka. fili orc-enshield
+++++++++++++++++++
the scene, as i understand it, is exceptionally well-written. fili (in sort of a callback to the scene with the eagles), calls out "thorRIIIIIIN!!!" just as he sees the pale orc veer in for the kill. he picks up the severed arm of an orc which is lying on the ground, swings it up in desperation, effectively blocking the pale orc's blow. and thus, forever after, fili is known as "fili orc-enshield."

this earns him deep respect from his hard-to-please uncle. as well as a hug. kili wipes his boots on the pale orc's glory box. -- maciliel telpemairo


Rembrethil
Tol Eressea


Jun 11 2014, 1:08am

Post #58 of 61 (57 views)
Shortcut
Yup! [In reply to] Can't Post

Tulkas wrestles with Morgoth, and in some versions Eonwe is there too, but it is Turin with Gurthang (Iron of Death) that delivers the final blow.

It is interesting that Anglachel/Gurthang is the instrument chosen. Maybe the sword was originally more benign, and merely a sentient blade? This is one thing I'd like to have fleshed out!!

Call me Rem, and remember, not all who ramble are lost...Uh...where was I?


Maciliel
Tol Eressea


Jun 11 2014, 1:15am

Post #59 of 61 (61 views)
Shortcut
it is a bloodthirsty blade!!!! [In reply to] Can't Post

 
it is a bloodthirsty blade -- its hunger can not be sated no matter how many bodies it slays!!!!

!!!!!!


aka. fili orc-enshield
+++++++++++++++++++
the scene, as i understand it, is exceptionally well-written. fili (in sort of a callback to the scene with the eagles), calls out "thorRIIIIIIN!!!" just as he sees the pale orc veer in for the kill. he picks up the severed arm of an orc which is lying on the ground, swings it up in desperation, effectively blocking the pale orc's blow. and thus, forever after, fili is known as "fili orc-enshield."

this earns him deep respect from his hard-to-please uncle. as well as a hug. kili wipes his boots on the pale orc's glory box. -- maciliel telpemairo

(This post was edited by Maciliel on Jun 11 2014, 1:15am)


Maciliel
Tol Eressea


Jun 13 2014, 6:00pm

Post #60 of 61 (56 views)
Shortcut
i don't quite understand why folks blame gwindor for the NE, either [In reply to] Can't Post

 
hi sador! : )

i also don't quite understand why folks blame gwindor for the NE, either (and i used to -- somewhat -- share that view).

apart from the tactical analysis you describe, i think at this point the tears were going to be unnumbered, any way they fought it. morgoth was very powerful at that point. i think this battle epitomizes the futility of the elves thinking that they can take on morgoth.

re beleg --

did he not pursue turin with thingol's blessing? if so, it would not then be a dereliction of duty.

i've lost my impression of mablung (and i haven't read far enough in coh to refresh..... why do you wonder if nellas would have dared approach mablung?

re gwindor giving turin anglachel.... my sense with gwindor is that his sensitivity to curses and fate are much increased through his time in angband. it's not just that he intellectually knows that the family of hurin is cursed. he feels it in his marrow, and he also feels the currents of competing fates. i think he gives turin anglachel because he feels the pull of that particular current, and it seems the right thing to do.

re bows and swords --

might it depend on the weight of each? aragorn (in the films, i know) carried both a sword and a bow at times.

i love that gwindor is your favorite elf!!! the more i read about him and think about his history and his actions, the more intriguing i find him! he's one of the few elves that strike me as having gained insight into both the lives and fates of elves and the edain. a rare vantage point.

re gwindor's hand loss.... maedhros lost a hand, and was still depicted as a fierce warrior, yes? beren as well (but perhaps not as much)? but neither were wizened, like gwindor. the gwindor who came back might have had trouble wielding a blade even if he had the use of both hands.

nice point about the wolves (who always get a bad rap anyway).

love your thoughts, sador. : )

cheers : )

.


aka. fili orc-enshield
+++++++++++++++++++
the scene, as i understand it, is exceptionally well-written. fili (in sort of a callback to the scene with the eagles), calls out "thorRIIIIIIN!!!" just as he sees the pale orc veer in for the kill. he picks up the severed arm of an orc which is lying on the ground, swings it up in desperation, effectively blocking the pale orc's blow. and thus, forever after, fili is known as "fili orc-enshield."

this earns him deep respect from his hard-to-please uncle. as well as a hug. kili wipes his boots on the pale orc's glory box. -- maciliel telpemairo


sador
Half-elven


Jun 15 2014, 5:26pm

Post #61 of 61 (69 views)
Shortcut
Short answers [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
beleg --
did he not pursue turin with thingol's blessing? if so, it would not then be a dereliction of duty.


Of course not! But this reflects more on the story than on Beleg. Had it been a "real" realm at the state of war, he would never have been allowed to go AWL (away with leave) in that way. This part of the story seems to be rather an Arthurian romance.


In Reply To
why do you wonder if nellas would have dared approach mablung?

He was based in Menegroth, which Nellas didn't like; and Beleg both knew Nellas and was known as a great friend of Turin. I'm not sure either of the two applied to Mablung.


In Reply To
re gwindor's hand loss.... maedhros lost a hand, and was still depicted as a fierce warrior, yes? beren as well (but perhaps not as much)?


Yes, for sure! My point was that I do not see how Gwindor, fresh after losing his hand, would be able to carry Turin bodily out of the orc-camp with Beleg for so long.


First page Previous page 1 2 3 Next page Last page  View All
 
 

Search for (options) Powered by Gossamer Forum v.1.2.3

home | advertising | contact us | back to top | search news | join list | Content Rating

This site is maintained and updated by fans of The Lord of the Rings, and is in no way affiliated with Tolkien Enterprises or the Tolkien Estate. We in no way claim the artwork displayed to be our own. Copyrights and trademarks for the books, films, articles, and other promotional materials are held by their respective owners and their use is allowed under the fair use clause of the Copyright Law. Design and original photography however are copyright © 1999-2012 TheOneRing.net. Binary hosting provided by Nexcess.net

Do not follow this link, or your host will be blocked from this site. This is a spider trap.