View Single Post
Old 11-10-2017, 12:05 AM   #13
Haunting Spirit
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 84
Balfrog has just left Hobbiton.

How I look forward to your posts – wondering what slurs will ensue and how you'll denigrate me next. Apparently there is 'click-baiting' going on, and Ms. Seth's my 'mistress'. And then supposedly – I'm Ms. Seth herself!

Well, well. Chuckle, chuckle. Please continue with the entertaining nonsense. Your nice and beautiful personality shines fully through, and I'm sure is winning over many admirers!

Back to business. Your last post is again full of self-righteous: 'I know best – and you're ignorant'. Sorry – but the stuff you spew on Tolkien's history is elementary knowledge that I first became aware of some 30 years ago. Of the factual stuff - you told me nothing I didn't already know.

Most amusingly - apparently you have more expertise than arguably the premier expert on The Hobbit: John Rateliff. And to boot – on one count – even more than Tolkien himself. You're unsubstantiated belittling of an Oxford University professor for a supposed lack of knowledge about a London dialect of the English language, is positively cringe-worthy.

Tolkien could not possibly have known any Cockney – really???
Being in all probability the most recognizable and famous dialect in all of England, I have to shake my head – but not in despair – more in pity.

How interesting you should imply I borrowed from another post

Despite the above – I was interested in how you both came to the same conclusion about the Trolls accents having a Manchester origin. I am interested in the strength of the evidence – and couldn't give a hoot whether you plagiarized or not. I asked specifically for a Manchester dialectal dictionary where such words we are debating (e.g. blimey, blighter, lumme) exist. Unsurprisingly you provided none.

Instead a Liverpudlian comedian – who no doubt had traveled over much of Britain (Southend, Yarmouth, Aberdeen as talked about in those sketches - and picked up who knows what when) is the basis of your Mancunian argument. What tosh.

Just because I've heard a Yorkshire-man shout out 'Sacre-bleu' - doesn't make him French. Seriously, the evidence presented was beyond feeble. To be honest, it was quite pathetic.

I recommend you take note of another well respected scholar's opinion. Mark Atherton states in 'There and Back Again' the following:

'Certainly, Bill Huggin's magic talking purse with its 'ere 'oo are you? ' has the unmistakable Cockney h-dropping … Tolkien's use of of the dialect of London in The Hobbit; it is more or less intelligible', and amusing, for everyone in Britain knew about Cockney as an English accent … there was a tradition of depicting Cockney speakers in novels. At the same time, Cockney would be amusing in The Hobbit because of the sheer element of surprise: readers do not expect to hear it here.'
Oxford wasn't so 'insular' as you claim (of course as usual - without any proof). And as to:

When, precisely, did Tolkien speak at first hand with lower class Londoners for any length of time?

Why would he need to? One avenue Tolkien would have picked up knowledge of Cockney – is 'books' (as Atherton suggests). Below are examples from a couple of masterpieces:

From Charles Dickens' Oliver Twist:

The Artful Dodger – a pick-pocket (very appropriately ) is named "lummy Jack" (lummy ~ lumme)

From James Joyce's Ulysses (1922):

“God blimey if she aint a clinker.”

Now of course with your philological qualifications (which we would all love to see) – you know better than both Rateliff and Atherton. And because your philological knowledge obviously exceeds Tolkien's when it comes to dialects - is it okay if I refer to you as Professor Morthoron from now on?

Take a look at Tolkien's essay: 'Chaucer as a Philologist: The Reeve's Tale', which was submitted in 1931 – in the same time period of The Hobbit's construction. One definitely comes away with the impression Tolkien knew at the very least – something of Cockney.

And by the way - have you ever listened to Tolkien's own voice recording of 'Roast Mutton'? Can you tell us how Tolkien being so well-acquainted with Mancunian accents having served with the Lancashire Fusiliers – couldn't imitate one?

Perhaps you should re-read Ms. Seth's article and pay particular attention to Note 4. It's certainly in line with Rateliff's and Atherton's assessments. And I'd take their opinions and the uses of Cockney by Dickens and Joyce – way over your opinion and the dubious offering by way of Robb Wilton. Maybe the light-bulb will finally go on. I have a funny feeling though: yer 'ed aint workin like it awt ta !
Balfrog is offline   Reply With Quote