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Old 12-10-2018, 07:04 AM   #4
Huinesoron
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
 
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You're right! Sort of & maybe. This is tied up in the Faring Forth, which is a fairly nebulous idea from the end of the original legendarium. The quote I think you're thinking of is this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Book of Lost Tales 2
(6) The Elves' prophecy is that one day they will fare forth from Tol Eressea and on arriving in the world will gather all their fading kindred who still live in the world and march towards Valinor - through the southern lands. This they will only do with the help of Men. If Men aid them, the fairies will take Men to Valinor - those that wish to go - fight a great battle with Melko in Erumani and open Valinor. Laurelin and Silpion will be rekindled, and the mountain wall being destroyed then soft radiance will spread over all the world, and the Sun and Moon will be recalled. If Men oppose them and aid Melko the Wrack of the Gods and the ending of the fairies will result - and maybe the Great End.
Does 'maybe the Great End' mean that a failed Faring Forth would be a precursor of Dagor Dagorath - that the Wrack of the Gods would be followed by all the shenanigans with Turin and Fi/Eonwe? Or is the battle in Valinor the Dagorath, and only takes place if Men aid the elves (since in the second scenario, Men never even reach Valinor)? It's not at all clear.

What makes all this even more confusing is that the Faring Forth happened - sort of. Tolkien's notes for the end of the Book of Lost Tales include this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by BoLT2
Rising of the Lost Elves against the Orcs and Nautar. The time is not ready for the Faring Forth, but the fairies judge it to be necessary. They obrain through Ulmo the help of Uin, and Tol Eressea is uprooted and dragged near to the Great Lands, nigh to the promontory of Ros. A magic bridge is cast across the intervening sound. Osse is wroth at the breaking of the roots of the isle he set so long ago - and many of his rare sea-treasures grow about it - that he tries to wrench it back; and the western half breaks off, and is now the Isle of Iverin.

The Battle of Ros: the Island-elves and the Lost Elves against Nautar, Gongs, Orcs, and a few evil Men. Defeat of the Elves. The fading Elves retire to Tol Eressea and hide in the woods.

Men come to Tol Eressea and also Orcs, Dwarves, Gongs, Trolls, etc. After the Battle of Ros the elves faded with sorrow. They cannot live in air breathed by a number of Men equal to their own or greater; and ever as Men wax more powerful and numerous so the fairies fade and grow small and tenuous, filmy and transparent, but Men larger and more dense and gross. At last Men, or almost all, can no longer see the fairies.

The Gods now dwell in Valinor, and come scarcely ever to the world, being content with the restraining of the elements from utterly destroying Men. They grieve much at what they see; but Iluvatar is over all.
Given the prophecy, this failed Faring Forth is nothing more or less than the elves trying to kick off the End of Days. They never get that far, though - they get stuck in northern France, and never make it to the 'southern lands'. There is actually a narrative fragment covering the failure; it's interesting reading.

Also! I found the other story I was thinking of, with Melkor being chased up a tree. The BoLT material is super weird, did I mention?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BoLT2
After the departure of Earendel and the coming of the Elves to Tol Eressea (and most of this belongs to the history of Men) great ages elapse; Men spread and thrive, and the Elves of the Great Lands fade. As Men's stature grows theirs diminishes. Men and Elves were formerly of a size, though Men always larger.

Melko again breaks away, by the aid of Tevildo (who in long ages gnaws his bonds); the Gods are in dissension about Men and Elves, some favouring the one and some the other. Melko goes to Tol Eressea and tries to stir up dissension among the Elves (between Gnomes and Solosimpi), who are in consternation and send to Valinor. No help comes, but Tulkas sends priviliy Telimektar (Taimonto) his son.

Telimektar of the silver sword and Ingil surprise Melko and wound him, and he flees and climbs up the great Pine of Tavrobel. Before the Inwir left Valinor Belaurin (Palurien) gave them a seed, and said that it must be guarded, for great tidings would one day come of its growth. But it was forgotten, and cast in the garden of Gilfanon, and a mighty pine arose that reached to Ilwe and the stars.

Telimektar and Ingil pursue him, and they remain now in the sky to ward it, and Melko stalks high above the air seeking ever to do a hurt to the Sun and Moon and stars (eclipses, meteors)...
This is fascinating stuff, because I think it's the only place that casts Melko[r] as a continuing force for evil in the world, rather than just a shadow on the hearts of Men. Also... Melko got chased up a tree! And he only escaped because his pet cat chewed through, presumably, the massive unbreakable chain Angainor.

And finally... that pine tree may well exist in the real world. Tavrobel is pretty closely identified with Great Haywood, where Edith Tolkien lived in the winter of 1916. Gilfanon, in whose garden the pine grew, lived in the House of the Hundred Chimneys near the bridge of Tavrobel.

One popular guess at the house Tolkien was thinking of is Shugborough Hall, which sits right next to a rather gorgeous old bridge outside Great Haywood. And wouldn't you know it, guess what the most prominent tree in the gardens of Shugborough is?



Yup.

(Bridge of Tavrobel, Gilfanon's house, Great Pine of Tavrobel)

Watch out - you never know who might be coming down...

hS
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