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Old 05-23-2016, 05:49 PM   #8
Gothmog, LoB
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Originally Posted by Morthoron View Post
I'll come back to the other points later, but this view seems egregiously off the mark. To say that "Celeborn has supreme authority" misses the mark by quite a measure. If anything, Galadriel and Celeborn were coeval in rule of their land, and in everything else, Galadriel was the superior, a leader among leaders. She called the White Council, it was her power in conjunction with her Ring that stayed the hands of time in Lothlorien, and it was Galadriel at Dol Guldur who "threw down its walls and laid bare its pits, and the forest was cleansed," at the end of the War of the Ring. Galadriel let Celeborn parade around with his shiny army while she did the major work in Middle-earth.
Perhaps I exaggerated a little bit there. What I meant to say is that Celeborn was the man and the Lord of Lórien. He wore the pants - at least publicly. How Galadrien and Celeborn's private arrangements were is another matter (as is what happened behind closed doors). I guess he deferred often to her and followed her counsel.

As to the White Council - Celeborn himself is never mentioned as a member but one assumes he was part of it, too.

However, if you read how things are described in Appendix B then Celeborn is mentioned a lot more than Galadriel. He leads the army, he takes Dol Guldur, he meets with Thranduil and comes to a new agreement with him.

Yes, Galadriel is mentioned as the one cleansing Dol Guldur, but nobody ever doubted she was strong and powerful with this kind of stuff.

The question is - is her power in that department (or her general wisdom and power) transferring into power in the political field and making her the official number one (i.e. a sort of Ruling Lady/Queen) instead of Celeborn. And I think the obvious answer to that is no.

Just as Thingol was the unquestioned ruler of Doriath (despite that the fact that his precious realm was completely dependent on the Girdle of Melian just as Lórien was on Nenya in the Third Age), Celeborn would have been the unquestioned ruler of Lothlórien.

Another hint in that direction is that it is Celeborn who first addresses the fellowship in LotR, not Galadriel. If he had been the ruler/number one it would have been her prerogative to do this. But she doesn't.

In that sense I find the idea of Celeborn and Galadriel originally setting up the kingdom of Eregion (either as monarchs or mere lords) only to be eventually overthrown by the Gwaith-i-Mírdain under Celebrimbor a very plausible scenario. We see how Celegorm and Curufin are able to influence public opinion in Nargothrond against both Finrod and Orodreth, and one could easily see the Noldor-smiths being less than pleased with deferring to some Sinda and his Noldor wife, be she Galadriel or not. Especially not when they were at odds about Annatar and/or the 'Rings of Power' agenda of the Mírdain.

And this seems to me to be completely in agreement with JRRT's general view of women. They all have, in essence, supplementary roles as helpers, healers, consolers of men - none of them is active in a man-like way (i.e. as a hero, leader, warrior). And those who try to do so are either punished or at least criticized for it - Galadriel, Aredhel, Éowyn. Even the Ruling Queens of Númenor are portrayed as somewhat unpleasant women - Ancalime ends the support her father has granted Gil-galad against Sauron, Telperien is described as proud and willful, and refuses to marry and give birth to an heir, and was one of the first monarchs of Númenor who came very close to rule until the day she died. And Vanimelde was a weak ruler who allowed her husband to play king, leading to him usurping and withholding the crown from his own son upon her death.

This is all not very favorably towards the concept of a female ruler.

And one can actually salvage a little bit from that by actually accepting the dates for Telperien's reign from TLoE, making her, and not Minastir, the victor over Sauron's armies in Eriador. She would most likely have dispatched a navy under the command of Minastir her nephew and heir, but considering that she would have been the Ruling Queen at this time the victory over Sauron would have been hers, and that would actually be pretty neat...
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