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Old 08-07-2014, 03:52 PM   #41
Alfirin
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Originally Posted by Moonraker View Post
Boromir was another matter, he tried to steal the Ring from Frodo, and theft of this magnitude does carry the penalty of jail in a civilised world.
Again, under whose laws? The attempt is made in an area without any local
people so not them.

Tecnically, Parth Galen is part of Gondor's Territory, and as such under Gondors law. And at the time of the attack, the ultimate arbiter of that law is Denethor, NOT Aragorn.If any question of crime arose, it would have to be Denethor, not Aragorn who would have to hear the case and pass judgement. Aragorn isn't king yet. Even once he became king, even if he did decide it was worth trying (which he probably wouldn't) he can't; few, if any, civilized legal systems allow for punishment for retroactive crimes (even if something is declared illegal now, you can't punish someone for doing it in the past, before it was illegal.) I will reiterate what the others have said, any decision by the rest of the fellowship to let Gandalf, Aragorn or anyone else be the leader, and to abide by thier decisions, was purely VOLUNTARY. Aragorn had NO legal authority to enforce any decision he made as law, heir to the throne or not.
Under the law as Denethor would interpret it, Boromir trying to take the ring would not have probably been considered a crime. Quite the opposite in fact, Denethor makes it pretty clear that in his book, NOT trying to take the ring and taking it back to Minas Tirith would have been the criminal act. Faramir makes it pretty clear in his words to Frodo in Ithilien that, by deciding to let Frodo and Co. go on thier way as opposed to taking them all back to Minas Tirith to see what Denthor thinks, he is techically comitting treason, and he damn well knows it.
As for trying to have him arrested in Rohan, how, the crime was not on Rohan soil, nor are any of the parties involved citizens of Rohan. Rohan literally would have no jurisdiction. And even if it did, it would not be much of a case. Remember the crime is only of great magnitude if you KNOW what the ring is, which no one in Rohan would. Short of someone in the party letting Theoden or Eomer in on the secret would would be dumb, especially Theoden (since, at that point Theoden would still be under Grima's ministrations so anything Theoden knew Grima would know and pass on to Saruman) it's just attemped theft of one gold ring. That's a minor crime at best, and given how well Boromir is thought of in Rohan, likely to be pardoned almost without thought.
To be honest, at this point, I think you are trying to cast Aragorn as some sort of absolute tyrant, doing whatever he thinks is best without council, and arresting or punishing anyone who disagrees with him. If he really WAS that kind of a person, there is no way he would have been allowed to join the Fellowship; it would be like letting Sauron himself join! From the beginning we are meant to see Aragon as a "good" and "wise" king to be, and a good and wise ruler does NOT just do whatever he wants. He may be the ultimate arbiter of the law, but he is NOT above it. To borrow a line from Tolkien's Friend C.S. Lewis's work "The King is under the law, for it's the law that makes him a king."
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Old 08-08-2014, 03:35 PM   #42
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Boromir was another matter, he tried to steal the Ring from Frodo, and theft of this magnitude does carry the penalty of jail in a civilised world.
Yes, but even if this is so, what has this to do with Rohan?
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Old 08-08-2014, 05:11 PM   #43
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Yes, but even if this is so, what has this to do with Rohan?
Rohan could have held Boromir in custody with the agreement of Theoden once the crime was explained. But that was never going to happen, as the Ring was mean't to be kept secret from Rohan, and the Company would not have risked going to Edoras with Isengard marshalling an army close by. Also, Denethor would have pleaded with Rohan to have Bormomir pardoned and released at once.

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Old 08-08-2014, 05:42 PM   #44
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They were not in Rohan at that point and were headed East, not back west to look for kidnapped Hobbits. If any Lord had authority there it would have been Boromir's father.
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Old 08-13-2014, 06:21 PM   #45
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Gandalf was not only answerable to Aragorn, but also to the Council. How could he possibly justify to the Council in going into Moria, even with wolves tracking the Company? Let's face it, wolves are hardly stiff opposition for a Company which boasts a Maiar and the heir of Isildur? Had it been a strong company of Orcs following them, as spotted by the keen eyes of Legolas, then that may have altered things, but wolves? I don't quite see it.

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Old 08-13-2014, 09:48 PM   #46
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It appears that he and Aragorn had been arguing this point for a while, at least before they even reached Caradhras. It also seems that it was an option, at least so far as Aragorn was concerned, a last option.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FotR, The Ring Goes South
not until it is plain that there is no other way.
As far as the wolves of which you seem to be dismissive it seems that the Company at least would disagree with your assertion.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boromir; A Journey in the Dark
The wolf that one hears is worse than the orc that one fears.
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Old 08-14-2014, 02:04 AM   #47
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Gandalf was not only answerable to Aragorn, but also to the Council. How could he possibly justify to the Council in going into Moria, even with wolves tracking the Company? Let's face it, wolves are hardly stiff opposition for a Company which boasts a Maiar and the heir of Isildur? Had it been a strong company of Orcs following them, as spotted by the keen eyes of Legolas, then that may have altered things, but wolves? I don't quite see it.
Even accepting the first premise, which I don't - it was a fellowship not a military or operation and it was made explicit that only on the Ringbearer was any charge laid so all this talk of arresting and charging is frankly ludicrous. Even if Aragorn had the jurisdiction and moral, authority, and he didn't, he almost certainly have the physical power. LOTR isn't Crimson Tide - the book also makes clear that they were no ordinary wolves. The bodies disappeared remember.
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Old 08-14-2014, 02:45 AM   #48
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It appears that he and Aragorn had been arguing this point for a while, at least before they even reached Caradhras. It also seems that it was an option, at least so far as Aragorn was concerned, a last option.



As far as the wolves of which you seem to be dismissive it seems that the Company at least would disagree with your assertion.
The orc one fears was with reference to them being present in Moria, possibly. I was referring to orcs hunting the Company, having been spotted by Legolas as being only a few miles behind and tracking them. Wolves presented no more than an annoying choir like need for Gandalf to unwillingly use his Maiar powers to quench the fire.
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Old 08-14-2014, 03:53 AM   #49
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They also represented certainty that the fellowship has been tracked by the servants of Sauron. Hence the attempt to go through the mines to escape their enemies eyes for a while.
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Old 08-14-2014, 04:39 AM   #50
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They also represented certainty that the fellowship has been tracked by the servants of Sauron. Hence the attempt to go through the mines to escape their enemies eyes for a while.
I don't believe the wolves tracked the Company from Mordor. they stumbled on them by luck, whilst at the same time following orders to snuff out lands that the Company may pass.
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:01 AM   #51
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I don't believe the wolves tracked the Company from Mordor. they stumbled on them by luck, whilst at the same time following orders to snuff out lands that the Company may pass.
Leaf said "tracked by Sauron" not "tracked from Mordor." Hardly the same thing.

It seems to me that Moria was as good a place as any to drop off the radar for a while. Remember that no one knew what Durin's Bane actually was, so the idea of entering its territory was not an assurance of anything.
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:23 AM   #52
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Leaf said "tracked by Sauron" not "tracked from Mordor." Hardly the same thing.

It seems to me that Moria was as good a place as any to drop off the radar for a while. Remember that no one knew what Durin's Bane actually was, so the idea of entering its territory was not an assurance of anything.
Moria was a venture into the unknown, and with no news on Balin, even the dwarves were afraid of what became of his rule in Moria. The wolves may have been sent from Mordor, or they may have not. But the tracking and orders were directed from Mordor.
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:32 AM   #53
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I don't believe the wolves tracked the Company from Mordor.
Well, nobody suggested that?!

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Originally Posted by Moonraker View Post
they stumbled on them by luck, whilst at the same time following orders to snuff out lands that the Company may pass.
Can you back this assumption up with textual evidence? It´s highly unlikely that those wolves "stumbled on them by luck". Hollin was under the observation of Sauron´s servants and there are several instances in the text that can confirm this. We have the lack of birds and other small animals which is noted by Aragorn. He takes this as a bad sign:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aragorn, The fellowship of the ring, Book II: The ring goes south
But I have a sense of watchfulness, and of fear, that I have never had here before.
Then there are the flocks of Crebain scouting over Hollin and Aragorn concludes:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aragorn, The fellowship of the ring, Book II: The ring goes south
Hollin is no longer wholesome for us: it is being watched.
And we have a strange shadow which passes over the stars. It was felt by Frodo and Gandalf, rather than seen. This was the earliest encouter with a Nazgul on a fellbeast!
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:48 AM   #54
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Well, nobody suggested that?!



Can you back this assumption up with textual evidence? It´s highly unlikely that those wolves "stumbled on them by luck". Hollin was under the observation of Sauron´s servants and there are several instances in the text that can confirm this. We have the lack of birds and other small animals which is noted by Aragorn. He takes this as a bad sign: Then there are the flocks of Crebain scouting over Hollin and Aragorn concludes:
And we have a strange shadow which passes over the stars. It was felt by Frodo and Gandalf, rather than seen. This was the earliest encouter with a Nazgul on a fellbeast!
If you can prove to me that the wolves were fully aware of the whereabouts of the Company beforehand? If they were, then Mordor would have sent them and a force ten fold stronger to get the Ring back. The crows spotted them and reported this back into Sauron? Not conclusive. The more likely scenario is that the wolves were only one of a number of enemies sent by Mordor to scour the various lands, with these wolves being one of the few groups to have got lucky in being given the right direction to scour. Gandalf said all lands were being watched by the enemy, so Sauron's minions were scattered in different lands and lying in hope that the Company passed their way.

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Old 08-14-2014, 06:04 AM   #55
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If you can prove to me that the wolves were fully aware of the whereabouts of the Company beforehand? If they were, then Mordor would have sent them and a force ten fold stronger to get the Ring back. The crows spotted them and reported this back into Sauron? Not conclusive. The more likely scenario is that the wolves were only one of a number of enemies sent by Mordor to scour the various lands, with these wolves being one of the few groups to have got lucky in being given the right direction to scour. Gandalf said all lands were being watched by the enemy, so Sauron's minions were scattered in different lands and lying in hope that the Company passed their way.
Well, that wasn't my point. I was trying to explain that the fellowship had good reasons to assume that they are no longer 'undercover'. They could not know if the wolves are just a scattered group or if more forces are on their way to hunt them down. So it's only reasonably to leave the open land.
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Old 08-14-2014, 03:20 PM   #56
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The orc one fears was with reference to them being present in Moria, possibly. I was referring to orcs hunting the Company, having been spotted by Legolas as being only a few miles behind and tracking them. Wolves presented no more than an annoying choir like need for Gandalf to unwillingly use his Maiar powers to quench the fire.
I doubt that the wolves have been "presented no more than an annoying choir" as Gandalf said of them, "who now will wish to journey south by night with the wild wolves on his trail?" These are wolves, rather than orcs, spotting/hunting the Company and it does not seem to me that Gandalf regards them as "an annoying choir". Not to mention the dual possibility that, "where the warg howls, there also the orc prowls." So instead of your scenario with "orcs hunting the Company" there in Hollin, it was rather wargs and Gandalf inquired how could any of them now wish to continue on the same course with wargs on their trail. According to you Gandalf could have easily dealt with them so his reluctance would be unnecessary. But if we are to believe the story rather than what one may project into the story Gandalf had no inclination to continue on the same path with wargs chasing them.
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Old 08-14-2014, 03:26 PM   #57
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Moria was a venture into the unknown,
Why would Aragorn even contemplate arresting Gandalf when it appears that going through Mordor was not out of their equations anyway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by FotR, The Ring Goes South
not until it is plain that there is no other way.
They did not know who or what was there, be it friend or foe. The impression you give is that they should never go there, and that Gandalf would have been forbidden to venture there by the Council, as if they knew they would encounter a Balrog.
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Old 08-14-2014, 03:53 PM   #58
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I doubt that the wolves have been "presented no more than an annoying choir" as Gandalf said of them, "who now will wish to journey south by night with the wild wolves on his trail?" These are wolves, rather than orcs, spotting/hunting the Company and it does not seem to me that Gandalf regards them as "an annoying choir". Not to mention the dual possibility that, "where the warg howls, there also the orc prowls." So instead of your scenario with "orcs hunting the Company" there in Hollin, it was rather wargs and Gandalf inquired how could any of them now wish to continue on the same course with wargs on their trail. According to you Gandalf could have easily dealt with them so his reluctance would be unnecessary. But if we are to believe the story rather than what one may project into the story Gandalf had no inclination to continue on the same path with wargs chasing them.
But in reality, when Gandalf does call on his Maiar powers, willingly or not, do wolves stand a chance with him? If you then add orcs to the equation alongside wolves (as in the Hobbit), then that is another question. In the Hobbit, Tolkein suggests Gandalf would have died after leaping off his pine tree and into the crowd of orcs and their spears.

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Why would Aragorn even contemplate arresting Gandalf when it appears that going through Mordor was not out of their equations anyway?

They did not know who or what was there, be it friend or foe. The impression you give is that they should never go there, and that Gandalf would have been forbidden to venture there by the Council, as if they knew they would encounter a Balrog.
Aragorn could not have arrested Gandalf unless he had the soldiers at hand there and then ready to do so. But at a later date he may well have brought the subject up formally in Gondor, as he did with the Gondor guard who broke the law on leaving his post to save Faramir, but he was pardoned. Also, whilst there was fierce disagreement between the Company on going to Moria, it fell just short of mutiny, thanks to the appearance of wolves. It was Boromir who risked stirring mutiny above all.
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Old 08-15-2014, 04:13 AM   #59
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Basically one important point regarding this whole thing -

- the main point of the quest with the Ring was to destroy Sauron not by power; it was a manifestation of rejecting any form of control. Starting to arrest people or exercising any form of control would be totally against the spirit of the whole "operation" and what the Free People stood for, or what they decided they were standing for.

So from that also follows, if we go down the line of talking about arrest, Aragorn should have first arrested Elrond and co. for deciding on such a ridiculous plan and putting the Ring into unnecessary risk by sending it to Mordor in the first place. Arguments had been put forward on the Council, making it clear that it was an incredibly risky option, and if there ever was a time for arresting someone, it might just as well been there. If Aragorn had been up to claiming his kingly power and arresting people for treason or endangering the fate of Middle-Earth, he would have probably agreed with Saruman the same way Boromir did at the Council: the best course is to claim the Ring, or at least keep it hidden. The madmen who wanted to run with it right into the heart of Sauron's realm should be arrested, in terms of public safety, to prevent them from doing anything crazy that could have cost the lives of thousands.
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Old 08-15-2014, 04:26 AM   #60
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What is more, surely Elrond and Cirdan should have arrested Isildur and forced him to destroy the ring. To reference another thread, this is a n aspect where understanding of Tolkien's Catholicism may be useful. It is about free will and it's proper exercise, not imposing and enforcing laws and hierachy.
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:38 AM   #61
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The leadership of Gandalf was questioned by the Company when he decided to choose the dark and dangerous path into Moria. At this point, should Aragorn have placed Gandalf under arrest and taken over the leadership of the Company to help protect the Ring?
No, Aragorn neither had the authority nor the inclination to arrest Gandalf. Aragorn, alone of the Fellowship, was quite aware of where the Istari were from and what Gandalf's mission was.

Again, I will repeat, for absurdity's sake, Aragorn neither had the authority nor the inclination to arrest Gandalf. To say otherwise is merely circumlocutious arguing to no point whatever.

Aragorn would not arrest him in a box
He would not arrest him with a fox
He would not arrest him here or there
He would not arrest him anywhere

He would not arrest him with some troops
He would not arrest him in a chicken coop
He would not arrest him in Moria dire
He would not arrest him in the Shire

He would not arrest him as the king
He would not arrest him for anything
Aragorn would not arrest Gandalf because
Of who and what and where he was.
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Old 08-15-2014, 12:35 PM   #62
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But in reality, when Gandalf does call on his Maiar powers, willingly or not, do wolves stand a chance with him? If you then add orcs to the equation alongside wolves (as in the Hobbit), then that is another question.
All 14 of them were already trapped before the orcs got there. So Gandalf with 12 Dwarves and a Hobbit were already out of the frying pan and into the fire before the orcs got there. You ask if the wolves stand a chance against Gandalf, the wolves had Gandalf trapped when orcs were not there, and Gandalf was not alone, he had 13 companions with him. So yes, I do think the wolves stood a chance against him.
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Old 08-15-2014, 01:05 PM   #63
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Basically one important point regarding this whole thing -

- the main point of the quest with the Ring was to destroy Sauron not by power; it was a manifestation of rejecting any form of control. Starting to arrest people or exercising any form of control would be totally against the spirit of the whole "operation" and what the Free People stood for, or what they decided they were standing for.

So from that also follows, if we go down the line of talking about arrest, Aragorn should have first arrested Elrond and co. for deciding on such a ridiculous plan and putting the Ring into unnecessary risk by sending it to Mordor in the first place. Arguments had been put forward on the Council, making it clear that it was an incredibly risky option, and if there ever was a time for arresting someone, it might just as well been there. If Aragorn had been up to claiming his kingly power and arresting people for treason or endangering the fate of Middle-Earth, he would have probably agreed with Saruman the same way Boromir did at the Council: the best course is to claim the Ring, or at least keep it hidden. The madmen who wanted to run with it right into the heart of Sauron's realm should be arrested, in terms of public safety, to prevent them from doing anything crazy that could have cost the lives of thousands.
Elrond did not make the decision alone to send the Ring to Mordor, that was also the decision made by Aragorn and Gandalf, and in principle even Boromir agreed (though in his mind he obviously had reservations). An arrest could only be even considered if somebody within the company committed what could widely be agreed as mutiny or treason, and not just because Denethor only wanted the Ring hidden in Minas Tirith. Bormomir ultimately did commit treason to the cause of the quest, and Saruman before him. Gandalf was pushing the patience of Aragorn and Bormomir to the limits in suggesting that Moria was the route they should take. Gandalf even wanted to take this route from the off, which Aragorn overruled.

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What is more, surely Elrond and Cirdan should have arrested Isildur and forced him to destroy the ring. To reference another thread, this is a n aspect where understanding of Tolkien's Catholicism may be useful. It is about free will and it's proper exercise, not imposing and enforcing laws and hierachy.
Isildur could indeed have been put on trial for not getting the job done of destroying the Ring. But having the willpower in sending the Ring into the fire, as everyone knows, is easier said than done. He would have been pardoned.

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All 14 of them were already trapped before the orcs got there. So Gandalf with 12 Dwarves and a Hobbit were already out of the frying pan and into the fire before the orcs got there. You ask if the wolves stand a chance against Gandalf, the wolves had Gandalf trapped when orcs were not there, and Gandalf was not alone, he had 13 companions with him. So yes, I do think the wolves stood a chance against him.
I get the feeling in the Hobbit Tolkein doesn't bill Gandalf as a Maiar, only a wizard, who could indeed be harmed by ordinary weapons.

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Old 08-15-2014, 01:17 PM   #64
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Originally Posted by Moonraker View Post
Gandalf was pushing the patience of Aragorn and Bormomir to the limits in suggesting that Moria was the route they should take. Gandalf even wanted to take this route from the off.
But the reluctance of Aragorn and Boromir was in neither case a reflection of a lack of confidence in Gandalf. Boromir simply knew Moria as a name of ill repute, and preferred a route that was more known to him and would get him to Gondor faster.

Aragorn's fear was for Gandalf, not the Quest in general.

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'I will follow your lead now--if this last warning does not move you. It is not of the Ring, nor of us others that I am thinking now, but of you, Gandalf. And I say to you: if you pass the doors of Moria, beware!'
FOTR A Journey In the Dark

There was no thought that Moria would put the Ring in any particular danger, no more than it was already. So Gandalf had done absolutely nothing that would warrant "arrest", or even choosing a new leader.
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Old 08-15-2014, 01:23 PM   #65
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But the reluctance of Aragorn and Boromir was in neither case a reflection of a lack of confidence in Gandalf. Boromir simply knew Moria as a name of ill repute, and preferred a route that was more known to him and would get him to Gondor faster.

Aragorn's fear was for Gandalf, not the Quest in general.

FOTR A Journey In the Dark

There was no thought that Moria would put the Ring in any particular danger, no more than it was already. So Gandalf had done absolutely nothing that would warrant "arrest", or even choosing a new leader.
I think Tolkein made an error here. He is implying that Aragorn can forsee Gandalf's doom by entering Moria, when in reality it is more likely that any of the Company were in greater peril, not having any supernatural powers themselves. If Aragorn knew Gandalf was a Maiar, why would he forecast his doom?
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Old 08-15-2014, 01:36 PM   #66
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I think Tolkein made an error here.


Now your questioning the omniscience of the author regarding his plot and his intentions?
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Old 08-15-2014, 01:38 PM   #67
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Now your questioning the omniscience of the author regarding his plot and his intentions?
Tolkien was the first to admit his work had faults in it.

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Old 08-15-2014, 01:59 PM   #68
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Mouthmoron, Tolkein was the first to admit his work had faults in it.
I question the sincerity of your posts here. By the way, his name is spelled Tolkien,
T-o-l-k-i-e-n. You've made that error a few times. But that is not surprising.

P.S. The namecalling is rather sophomoric, but apt for the type of poster you are.
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Old 08-15-2014, 02:10 PM   #69
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I think Tolkein made an error here. He is implying that Aragorn can forsee Gandalf's doom by entering Moria, when in reality it is more likely that any of the Company were in greater peril, not having any supernatural powers themselves. If Aragorn knew Gandalf was a Maiar, why would he forecast his doom?
If you're going to say Tolkien was wrong, and use that to bolster your point, there's no need in discussing this further.
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Old 08-15-2014, 02:12 PM   #70
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If you're going to say Tolkien was wrong, and use that to bolster your point, there's no need in discussing this further.
Only an opinion. But if he was right in allowing Aragorn the ability to express such accurate foresight, I would want to know how it was possible. He only spoke for the ill fortune of Gandalf, and no other member of the Company.

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Old 08-15-2014, 02:27 PM   #71
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Only an opinion.
One without foundation, particularly since Tolkien did not subsequently edit or offer another later version of the sequence. Since there is no alternate storyline, the idea that Tolkien was wrong in what he wrote is inane; in any case, the author is never wrong, even if he changes his mind. The story is his to alter.

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But if he was right in allowing Aragorn the ability to express such accurate foresight, I would want to know how it was possible.
Foresight, providence and prescience are hallmarks of the books. The foretelling of dooms runs from the early 1st Age through the end of the 3rd Age, from the Dooms of Mandos all the way to Saruman's curse of Frodo. I suggest you read further.
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Old 08-15-2014, 02:30 PM   #72
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Originally Posted by Morthoron View Post
One without foundation, particularly since Tolkien did not subsequently edit or offer another later version of the sequence. Since there is no alternate storyline, the idea that Tolkien was wrong in what he wrote is inane; in any case, the author is never wrong, even if he changes his mind. The story is his to alter.



Foresight, providence and prescience are hallmarks of the books. The foretelling of dooms runs from the early 1st Age through the end of the 3rd Age, from the Dooms of Mandos all the way to Saruman's curse of Frodo. I suggest you read further.
The question remains unanswered. How did Aragorn foretell the imminent doom of a powerful Maiar, one that even the Nine Nazgul could not get past? He had been to Moria before, but did he have any news of an ancient terror dwelling there? This goes way past the level of accuracy of Glorfindel's prediction on the fate of the Witch-king, which took a very long time to fulfil.

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Old 08-15-2014, 02:37 PM   #73
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The question remains unanswered. How did Aragorn foretell the imminent doom of a powerful Maiar? He had been to Moria before, but did he have any news of an ancient terror dwelling there?
Perhaps there is a perception problem here. I offered you the correct answer in my last reply, which you then quoted. Here, let me re-post it so that you may read it again. Several times if you'd like:

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Foresight, providence and prescience are hallmarks of the books. The foretelling of dooms runs from the early 1st Age through the end of the 3rd Age, from the Dooms of Mandos all the way to Saruman's curse of Frodo. I suggest you read further.
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Old 08-15-2014, 02:41 PM   #74
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Originally Posted by Morthoron View Post
Perhaps there is a perception problem here. I offered you the correct answer in my last reply, which you then quoted. Here, let me re-post it so that you may read it again. Several times if you'd like:
Not to the level of accuracy and imminence with which Aragorn suggested. The question remains unanswered. Aragorn could not have known without at least some inclination of truth that an ancient terror may be present in Moria powerful enough to kill Gandalf, and if he was to warn of the dangers of death in Moria, it would have been wiser to have expressed it for all the Company (Frodo nearly got killed by an orc spear, for instance, and Pippin could have fallen to his doom), and not just for the sake of Gandalf. He even suggested in Moria that Pippin should make use of Gandalf as the lead whilst they still had him to guide them. The level of accuracy in Aragorn's words is almost psychic.

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Old 08-15-2014, 02:53 PM   #75
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Other people have addressed the issue of Aragorn's ability to make an arrest, but I'd also like to throw in my two-cents. Before he was crowned as King of Gondor and Arnor, he had zero authority except over those who swore allegiance to him. He was the Chieftain of the Dunedain, and as such, the Dunedain of the North owed him allegiance, but he claimed to ability to command or exercise authority beyond those people, not even the lands which his ancestors ruled, but merely those who counted themselves as his subjects. He did not exercise lordship over the Shire, over the the human settlements in the former territories of Arnor, but merely over the Dunedain who gave themselves over to his command.

Had he attempted to exercise authority over any land before being recognized by the existing government (say in Gondor before he was crowned), he would have been ignored. Aragorn even traveled to Gondor under an alias during the rule of the Steward Ecthelion II, but exercised no authority as King of Gondor; he merely served the steward as an advisor and commander in Gondor's armies.

Aragorn is not the only rightful king who refused to exercise his authority when he had no de facto rule over his territory. Thorin II did not reign as king until he had reclaimed Erebor. He, like the Chieftains of the Dunedain, exercised authority over subjects, but not the title and rights of a king over his kingdom. During the War of the Ring, Aragorn even wanted to avoid entering Minas Tirith until he had been crowned!

So, exercising any kind of authority as an officer/leader of Gondor is right out. Whether or not he had a right to isn't really the question, it's a question of would he have done so. The answer is no: Aragorn would exercise no authority derived from his status as king of Gondor until he had been crowned.

Next, his status as a member of the Fellowship. It has been brought up before that he might have challenged Gandalf's leadership if it appeared that Gandalf was leading the company to ruin. Arrest might be interpreted as simply devesting him of leadership authority and taking on the role himself. This is possible, but exceedingly unlikely. It would, first, require the support of either the rest of the Fellowship, or the Ringbearer, as even Gandalf deferred to Frodo's decisions. As has been brought up before, Gandalf was known (to Aragorn) to be a true and faithful servant of the Valar. His wisdom, while not entirely beyond question, was not to be taken lightly. Aragorn understood that Gandalf had the experience to properly evaluate the risks of traveling through Moria, despite their lack of knowledge of what was occupying the place. Gandalf's fall demonstrates that he was not infallible, but all other roads had been reasonably disqualified, and Boromir's evident desire to get the Ring to Gondor was troubling to all those who recognized it.

Gimli's desire to enter Moria wasn't exactly bias, in my opinion, but a combination of information and ignorance. Though the dwarves had not heard from the colony in Moria for some time, they had traveled to Rivendell (in large part) to seek Elrond's advice on investigating. They had no evidence that the colony had been destroyed; they just had no word whatsoever. Hardly confidence inspiring, but also not a reason to believe that it had been completely destroyed. Gimli obviously believed that some kind of friendly party likely occupied the place, or that whatever hostile force had occupied it before had been sufficiently subdued that it would present less of a threat than paths that were known to be watched by active enemies.

And, despite all that, Gandalf still thought it was a bad idea. He just saw no better option. He and Aragorn, in fact, agreed on that. They resolved that without a safer option, they would take the path of least resistance that wasn't confirmed to be under the watchful eye of a known enemy, but one that might be occupied by an unknown enemy that could reasonably have been recently defeated, in part if not in whole.
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Old 08-15-2014, 03:01 PM   #76
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How did Aragorn foretell the imminent doom of a powerful Maiar, one that even the Nine Nazgul could not get past?
Did he do so, forecast Gandalf's "imminent doom"?
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Old 08-15-2014, 03:03 PM   #77
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Arrest might be interpreted as simply devesting him of leadership authority and taking on the role himself.
Indeed, arrest does not necessarily mean sending Gandalf to jail. Aragorn taking over the leadership is a form of arrest, if done in such a manner as to dethrone Gandalf as the outright leader and authority of the Company and the quest.
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Old 08-15-2014, 03:06 PM   #78
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I get the feeling in the Hobbit Tolkein doesn't bill Gandalf as a Maiar, only a wizard, who could indeed be harmed by ordinary weapons.
You just used The Hobbit as part of your argument that the orcs had a better chance of beating Gandalf. Since we are both using this source, there is no need for you to dismiss it now, especially as it has been used in your arguments.

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In the Hobbit, Tolkein suggests Gandalf would have died after leaping off his pine tree and into the crowd of orcs and their spears.
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Old 08-15-2014, 03:09 PM   #79
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Indeed, arrest does not necessarily mean sending Gandalf to jail. Aragorn taking over the leadership is a form of arrest, if done in such a manner as to dethrone Gandalf as the outright leader and authority of the Company and the quest.
That's fine; the points I made following that statement remain valid. I don't believe Aragorn would have acted in such a manner. I mean, it's obvious that he didn't within the bounds of the story, but Gandalf would have had to have been purposefully acting against the purposes of the Fellowship for Aragorn to have acted in such a manner. Aragorn didn't even attempt to remove Boromir from the Fellowship, and I'm sure he recognized that Boromir was falling prey to the Ring's corruption. He would not have acted against Gandalf unless Gandalf took purposeful, deliberate action against the interests of the Ring's destruction, in my opinion.
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Old 08-15-2014, 03:11 PM   #80
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You just used The Hobbit as part of your argument that the orcs had a better chance of beating Gandalf. Since we are both using this source, there is no need for you to dismiss it now, especially as it has been used in your arguments.
I actually think this was just an inconsistency with the true nature of Gandalf as a Maiar from the Hobbit to the Lord of the Rings. I don't believe anything but a Maiar could have killed Gandalf the Grey, and a powerful one at that.
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