View Single Post
Old 03-28-2004, 09:02 PM   #24
Late Istar
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 2,142
Aiwendil has been trapped in the Barrow!
Lindil wrote:
I rather doubt we need a 2nd Prophecy of Mandos, but if some one has something we missed in the 2nd prophecy thread...
Actually, I think that the discussion in that thread was far from resolved. I am still rather undecided on the matter of the second prophecy of Mandos. We should probably resume discussion in that thread, though.

So perhaps it was all done as a prod to get the real version out of someone in Rivendell.
A colorful theory, and very Bilbo-ish! But I cannot quite convince myself that no one had ever taken the time to write a full Lay of Earendil. And it is spoken of with regard to the Atanatarion in MT as if the whole thing was quite complete.

The question, of course, for us is whether to make use of the poem in any way.

After some hesitation, I'd have to say that I lean toward "no" - if what we were doing was writing a fan-fictionalized Silmarillion, then it would be a valuable resource in constructing a full tale of Earendil. But of course we are not, and I see neither a pressing need to add details from it, nor sufficient assurance of its validity.

I think we might want to at least look seriously as Fingon as sire of Gil-Galad, and retaining the earlier note re: Fingon's sending him, in it's functional entirety
This has occurred to me as well. But in the end I must come out against it. I do not think that the Gil-Galad related problems are insurmountable. And the Fingon idea was, as Christopher stressed, a very transitory idea.

I am not sure on the dating, but the point could be made, regardless, that the passing of the Overlordship to another house [i.e. Fingolfin, Fingon, Turgon and then Gil-Galad son of Fingon] would require an alteration of a Doom of Mandos.
I disagree. First of all, and least important, the Fingon parentage would actually re-introduce what I see as a great difficulty with the matter of the Kingship as presented in the '77. That is: why should the kingship pass from Fingon to Turgon rather than from Fingon to Gil-Galad?

With regard to the Doom of Mandos in particular, two points ought to be made:

1. The words of Mandos do not at all necessitate that the Kingship never left the house of Fingolfin. They say only that it passed from the house of Feanor to the house of Fingolfin - which it did, in any case. If Gil-Galad then became the King, it later and separately passed from the house of Fingolfin to the house of Finarfin.

Note that this is actually what happens "in Elende": first the lordship of Tirion goes to Fingolfin while Feanor is at Formenos; then, after the flight of the Noldor it goes to Finarfin. And clearly the text ought not to be so interpreted as to invalidate this.

2. In any case, both QS and LQ date from before the Gil-Galad/Orodreth note, so the latter would take precedence.

Regarding Gil-Galad's Kingship vs. Earendil's lordship: I really don't think that there is any need for concern, whether Gil-Galad is at Balar or on the mainland at this point. Gil-Galad is the King of the Noldor - that is, the overlord of all the Noldor. Earendil is the lord of the people at the havens (and Lindil is quite right in pointing out that he is a lord, not a king). There is no contradiction here.

Although such decisions will always come down to the Human level at some point, or else we will have a painfully dry ‘abstraction’ of Tolkien, not anything that could really be called his.
Exactly. I don't think that there is a defficiency in our principles in this regard. As you foresaw at the beginning of the whole principles discussion, we cannot simply lay down a set of laws and turn the whole project into a big algebra problem. Note that I don't say that we ought not but rather that we cannot - or at least, we cannot do so without creating a list of principles as long as the Silmarillion itself. The best we can do, and what we have done, is to lay out general rules that must then be interpreted in actual practice. I don't think that our principles are at fault when we find ourselves entrenched in one of these difficult issues; I think that is exactly how they are supposed to work.

This leaves us with the question of whether Gil-Galad was at the havens or on Balar at the time of the Earendil story. I still can't understand why he should have remained on the mainland when Cirdan went to Balar.
Aiwendil is offline   Reply With Quote