View Single Post
Old 04-05-2005, 02:40 PM   #6
King's Writer
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 1,457
Findegil is a guest of Tom Bombadil.
Sorry for the late response, thing are becoming dense in my privat life.

NA-EX-16: Aiwendil posted:
Isn't the source for this GA note 2 rather than QS77? Not that it really matters.
GA note 2 does not give any indication if there was a headline for the battle. It did only indicate what was left out in UT. But it would be rather strange (in my view at least) if the battle would be described under the headline “The Words of Húrin and Morgoth”, therefore I adopted the headline from the Quenta Silmarillion.

NA-TI-04: Aiwendil posted:
Isn't there a section from either QS77 or GA in between here? It's not marked in the full text.
Well, the hole passage which is marked NA-TI-04 from “Here then shall be recounted …” to “nor any of the Men of Hador, nor any tidings of the battle and the fate of their lords.” is a silently reconstructed text. This means it is reconstructed from the Sil77 with the information given in GA, note2. If you wish for a clearer indication of what comes from which source I will rework that passage. But it will take some time before I can do this.

NA-EX-18: Okay, I did not think of deleting the sentence. It is a good idea.

NA-EX-19: What about this:
NA-EX-19<GA {But even as}When the vanguard of {Maidros}[Maeðros] came {upon the Orcs}up, Morgoth loosed his {last}[greatest] strength{, and Angband was emptied}. …
NA-EX-21, NA-EX-22 & the issue of GA versus Narn: The passages are switched because I followed the single sentence of the Narn-Version that deals with the eastern battle as close as possible. The passage in the Narn reads:
Then in the plain of Anfauglith, on the fourth day of the war, there began the Nirnaeth Arnoediad, all the sorrow of which no tale can contain. Of all that befell in the eastward battle: of the routing of Glaurung the Drake by the Naugrim of Belegost; of the treachery of the Easterlings and the overthrow of the host of Maeðros and the flight of the Sons of Fëanor, no more is here said. In the west the host of Fingon retreated over the sands ...
In this sentence the order is changed and I followed this since it is all we have of the course of the battle in the east as Tolkien later saw it. I only elaborated the single issues (“the routing of Glaurung”; “the treachery of the Easterlings”; “the overthrow of the host of Maeðros”) with the corresponding passages of GA. I also see some points of problem with the integration and on is the issue of “Yet” that Aiwendil mentioned.
But after producing the text as it stands now I don’t think it is impossible to take the course of the battle described in the Narn as a basis. Beside the fact that it is Tolkiens last idea, I think it is in my view better than the old story. In the old story I got the feeling that had Maedhors timing worked, the battle would have had a different result. In the Narn the timing did work, but the forces of Morgoth were so overwhelming that Maedhors planed failed (mostly because of the treachery of the Easterlings).

Aiwendil wrote:
Another general consideration is to what extent we can trust that the QS77 text is an accurate presentation of the Narn text. Christopher tells us that "other features of the story as told in The Silmarillion that are not found in GA are derived from the Narn", and gives a few specific examples. Yet I can't help but to wonder whether any further changes were made. Actually, it would be quite uncharacteristic of his general procedure in the '77 to use a large passage from any text without at least a few modifications. Mister Underhill has noted (some time ago) that the whole element of Gothmog's "troll guard" (which may raise several problems with regard to trolls functioning in sunlight) is found nowhere but in this passage in the '77, which we can only guess comes from the Narn.
So what you suggest is that we have to mistrust Christopher Tolkien to the degree that he would add such features as the Troll-guard into the Sil77 out of the blue and does not tell us so in the GA but rather deceives us with the general sentence about “other features”? That is not to say that I think the Sil77-text is one to one from the Narn-version. I am absolutely sure that Christopher Tolkien made many editorial alterations that he did not list in the GA, note 2, but when we lock to other parts of the Sil77 such editorial alterations not listed in the corresponding HoME-section are small alterations of style or grammatical features. To introduce a otherwise unrecorded species into the first age is fare beyond that level and would surely have found its way to the comments in GA. So I am against using GA here. The Narn was the alter account and we have that text even if it is edited by Christopher Tolkien. (On the other hand all the text of the Narn in UT is edited by Christopher Tolkien and we have near to no information to what degree.)
About the problems with the troll-guard: When Húrin killed 70 of them it was night so that does not create a problem. We are told about Trolls, that they were a product of the earlier day when there was no sun-light. Gothmog was also around at that time so it is possible that his guard was a relic of older days, not really much useful in the days of the sun, but still a force of his own that he could use anywhere in the underground kingdom of his master, and during the night also outside of it. Beside that the last stand of Húrin took place near to Taur-nu-Fuin, and I think that in a wood of such a name it might be that Trolls could even move around during the daylight.
In conclusion I see the problem but I can’t feel it a good reason to mistrust it origin of the troll-gurad from JRR Tolkien.

Aiwendil wrote:
Aelfwine is out in our version. With that in mind, I must say that the whole introduction starts to seem quite out of place.
I agree that Aelfwine is out in our version, but not to the conclusion drawn from it that no introductions are possible. If we look at the Sil77 chapter Of Beren and Lúthien it has a kind of introduction. So I don’t see any good reason to skip the intro completely. I still see the problem of first person telling as it is done in the second version of the intro. As suggested above the second version micght be easier to deal with in that respect. I will try that out here:
NA-TI-01b< Aelfwine & Dirhaval A Here begins that tale which {Ælfwine}[was] made from the {Húrinien}[Narn i Chîn Húrin]: which is the longest of all the lays of Beleriand now held in memory {in Eressea}[by the Elves]. But it is said {there}[by them] that, though made in Elvish speech and using much Elvish lore (especially of Doriath), this lay was the work of a Mannish poet, {Dirhavel}[Dirhaval], who lived at the Havens in the days of {Earendel}[Earendil] and there gathered all the tidings and lore that he could of the House of Hador, whether among Men or Elves, remnants and fugitives of {Dorlómin}[Dor-lómin], of Nargothrond, or of Doriath. From Mablung he learned much; and by fortune also he found a man named Andvír, and he was very old, but was the son of that Andróg who was in the outlaw-band of Túrin, and alone survived the battle on the summit of Amon Rudh. Otherwise all that time between the flight of Túrin from Doriath and his coming to Nargothrond, and Túrin's deeds in those days, would have remained hidden, save the little that was remembered among the people of Nargothrond concerning such matters as Gwindor or Túrin ever revealed. In this way also the matter of Mîm and his later dealings with Húrin were made clear. This lay was all that {Dirhavel}[Dirhaval] ever made, but it was prized by the Elves and remembered by them. {Dirhavel}[Dirhaval] they say perished in the last raid of the sons of Fëanor upon the Havens. His lay was composed in that mode of verse which was called Minlamad thent / estent. {Though this verse was not wholly unlike the verse known to Ælfwine, he translated the lay into prose (including in it, or adding in the margins as seemed fit to him, matter from the Elvish commentaries that he had heard or seen); for he was not himself skilled in the making of verse, and the transference of this long tale from Elvish into English was difficult enough. Indeed even as it was made, with the help of the Elves as it would seem from his notes and additions, in places his account is obscure.}
This version into 'modern' {English}[language], that is forms of {English}[language] intelligible to living users of {the English}[this] tongue (who have some knowledge of letters, and are not limited to the language of daily use from mouth to mouth) does not attempt to imitate the idiom of {Ælfwine, nor that of} the Elvish which often shows through especially in the dialogue. But since it is even to Elves now 'a tale of long ago', and depicts high and ancient persons and their speech (such as Thingol and Melian), there{ is in Ælfwine's version, and clearly} was in {Dirhavel}[Dirhaval]'s day, much archaic language, of words and usage, and the older and nobler Elves do not speak in the same style as Men, or in quite the same language as that of the main narrative; there are therefore here retained similar elements. It is for this reason that, for example, Thingol's speech is not that of our present day: for indeed the speech of Doriath, whether of the king or others, was even in the days of Túrin more antique than that used elsewhere. One thing (as Mîm observed) of which Túrin never rid himself, despite his grievance against Doriath, was the speech he had acquired during his fostering. Though a Man, he spoke like an Elf of the Hidden Kingdom{, which is as though a Man should now appear, whose speech and schooling until manhood had been that of some secluded country where the English had remained nearer that of the court of Elizabeth I than of Elizabeth II}.>
Here the element of Aelfwine was deleted by me and the first person narrator was not included by Tolkien. The text is now that of an unnamed later editor. To make it even more obscure I did also delete all references to English. It seems to me that this works a bit better than the other version.

NA-EX-12: I still hesitate to eliminate the motive of the “treacherous shaft of Curufin remembered by Men” completely. Would it be possible to add it in this weekend form: NA-EX-12<QS The treacherous shaft of Curufin that wounded Beren was remembered among Men. Therefore{ of} the folk of Haleth that dwelt in Brethil{ only the half came forth, and they} went not to join {Maidros}[Maeðros], but came rather to Fingon{ and Turgon} in the West.> Some thoughts of mine to this: The folk of Brethil had to that time not made any alliance to the Elves save only Doriath. Thus Maedhros could have hoped to add them to his force since they were long ago rescued by Caranthir. But with the deeds of Curufin remembered about them they did disobey Maedhros bidding and joined Fingon.

So fare for the moment.
Findegil is offline   Reply With Quote