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Old 05-24-2019, 11:52 AM   #1
Urwen
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Thoughs on M[a]eglin

Read the title.
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Old 05-24-2019, 12:54 PM   #2
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Mithalwen is lost in the dark paths of Moria.Mithalwen is lost in the dark paths of Moria.Mithalwen is lost in the dark paths of Moria.Mithalwen is lost in the dark paths of Moria.
I have. Though I donít know what to make of it. Did you mean thoughts?
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Old 05-24-2019, 01:11 PM   #3
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Yes.
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Old 06-10-2019, 07:34 AM   #4
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Transcluded from 'Turin and Maeglin?'

The Timeline of Maeglin

This table is a summary of M(a)eglin's story as told in the various accounts. It spans everything from the 1917 Fall to the 1970 Of Maeglin that went into the Silm (plus a footnote to The Wanderings of Hurin, which CT is cagey about dating).

What's really interesting is that Maeglin actually gets worse and worse from the Fall to the 1930 Quenta. In 1917 Melko already knew where Gondolin was; by 1930 Meglin was giving up its location as well as its secrets. He went from gaining a captaincy of Melko's army to lordship of the city as Morgoth's vassal. He also deliberately breaks the law in mining outside the mountains, where in 1917 he just strayed. And, oh yeah, the Quenta tells us that Meglin was plotting to usurp the throne of Gondolin even before his captivity.

(In both accounts, he also sends messages to Morgoth telling him to guard the Way of Escape. In the Quenta, the initial flight from Gondolin gets ambushed by a dragon because of him.)

Isfin (Aredhel)'s story stays roughly the same, though where exactly she gets lost varies - sometimes Taur-na-Fuin, sometimes Brethil, sometimes Nan Elmoth. Eol swings from a generic Dark Elf to a deserter from the Nirnaeth, back to our familiar grumpy kinsman of Thingol. The account of him being captured does exist (you were quite right!), but was rejected as too similar to Maeglin's capture.

Up until 1951, Meglin is a straight-up villain. It's only with the original 'Of Meglin' that any tragedy enters his story: that's when his parental murder-suicide story shows up, and it never changes after that. Unfortunately, the last account of the Fall of Gondolin was written 20 years earlier, and never revisited, so we don't have any idea whether Tolkien would have changed Maeglin's actions during the attack to reflect his more sympathetic backstory.

Except one. Buried in HoME XI is a footnote from The Wanderings of Hurin, which formed the lost end to the Grey Annals. I'm not sure whether it's from the '50s or later, but at any rate it postdates 'Of Meglin'. I've summarised it on the table, but CT records the full note like this:

Quote:
"Later when captured and Maeglin wished to buy his release with treachery, Morgoth must answer laughing, saying: Stale news will buy nothing. I know this already, I am not easily blinded! So Maeglin was obliged to offer more - to undermine resistance in Gondolin."

Almost exactly the same note is found on the slip giving in-formation about the new meaning of the name Haladin; but here, after the words "undermine resistance in Gondolin", my father continued: "and to compass the death of Tuor and Earendel
if he could. If he did he would be allowed to retain Idril (said Morgoth)."
Whether this is materially different to the original story is for you to judge, but is an interesting text in that it's the very last time Tolkien ever wrote anything about the Fall of Gondolin.

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Old 06-10-2019, 07:52 AM   #5
Urwen
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You once said that if Morgoth were to ensnare a dead spirit to do his bidding, the only Elf to ever aid him willingly would be a prime candidate for that. Do you still think so?
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Old 06-10-2019, 07:58 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Urwen View Post
You once said that if Morgoth were to ensnare a dead spirit to do his bidding, the only Elf to ever aid him willingly would be a prime candidate for that. Do you still think so?
At what stage of writing? I'd say Morgoth would easily be able to ensnare the elf who was planning to oust his uncle (without Morgoth's aid) and steal both his throne and his daughter.

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Old 06-10-2019, 08:38 AM   #7
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I meant this:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Huinesoron View Post
One idea I haven't been able to source tonight is that some Elven shades might never reach Mandos, but be captured by Morgoth. I know I've seen it bandied about; if it holds true in the later canon, then the only named defector to Morgoth would probably be a good candidate - and we can assume that the Dark Lord wouldn't be inclined to treat his new toy gently...

hS

Also, I've read that document, and what I find particularly interesting are the details in Sketch of Mythology, where Ylmir (Ulmo) knew he would cause Gondolin's destruction, which means that my theory that it was he Ulmo and Tuor were warning Turgon against is actually true according to at least one source.
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Old 06-10-2019, 01:44 PM   #8
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Quote:
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I meant this:
I know what you meant. What I meant is that 'M[a]eglin' is one character in 1917, a different (and much eviller) character in 1930, and a potentially more sympathetic one in 1950. Would Morgoth be able to snare 'Maeglin who was traumatised by the loss of his parents' as easily as 'Meglin who plotted to overthrow Turgon and broke the laws protecting the city'?

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Originally Posted by Urwen View Post
Also, I've read that document, and what I find particularly interesting are the details in Sketch of Mythology, where Ylmir (Ulmo) knew he would cause Gondolin's destruction, which means that my theory that it was he Ulmo and Tuor were warning Turgon against is actually true according to at least one source.
Yep; the idea that Gondolin would only fall by treachery is a pretty long-standing one, but it's only that one source that has Ulmo knowing specifically about Maeglin.

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Old 06-10-2019, 02:08 PM   #9
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He would be able to ensnare both versions as easily, and maybe make him act as his invisible agent during Dagor Dagorath. Imagine that: Elves and Men alike dying, without even knowing what or who killed them. I imagine it would be an exquisite form of torture for both them and M[a]eglin.

(It's also a great opportunity for Anglachel vs Anguirel shenanigans)

I wonder what part would M[a]eglin play in Dagor Dagorath? Would it be akin to what I described above? I am inclined to think that yes, it would.
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Old 06-10-2019, 02:25 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Urwen View Post
M[a]eglin
Why do you write "Maeglin" that way?
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Old 06-10-2019, 02:29 PM   #11
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Because his old name was Meglin, why else?
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Old 06-23-2019, 12:50 AM   #12
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And what of Eol? Was he watching from Halls of Mandos? If so, was he secretly pleased that his curse killed his only child? That his own line was broken?
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