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Old 08-14-2018, 07:24 AM   #10
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
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Location: The north-west of the Old World, east of the Sea
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Originally Posted by Andsigil View Post
There's no record of his fate. Same for the Blue Two.
Which makes me wonder if there's more going on there. Tolkien does a pretty good job of cleaning up the loose ends after LotR is over, clearing the stage of immortals and powers to set up the dominion of Men... but then he goes and leaves a wizard we've actually met hanging around on the borders of Mirkwood.

I'm about three-quarters convinced that Radagast is meant to be a 'prehistoric version' of some mythological character from the Black Forest (much as Frodo's song about cats with fiddles is); the name of the wood fits, it's an area Tolkien would have come across (being Germanic), and he just stands out so prominently as a character who was made for A Purpose, but never actually does much in the books. This is even more obvious in The Hobbit, where Gandalf just casually mentions him to Beorn. "Yup, got this cousin, lives in these parts, no biggie."

The various wikis want me to look at a Slavic god of hospitality, which I suppose makes sense, but it seems a bit... random. If Tom Bombadil gets a genuine Tolkienian description as "the spirit of the vanishing Oxfordshire countryside" (which at least tells us his role in the story, if not his nature), then why does Radagast get left as a huge hanging thread?

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