The Barrow-Downs Discussion Forum


Visit The *EVEN NEWER* Barrow-Downs Photo Page

Go Back   The Barrow-Downs Discussion Forum > Middle-Earth Discussions > The Books
User Name
Password
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 06-16-2016, 04:55 PM   #41
Galin
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 903
Galin has been trapped in the Barrow!
In The Grey Havens (second edition version here) the story tells: "As he turned and came towards them Frodo saw that Gandalf now wore openly on his hand the Third Ring, Narya the Great, and the stone upon it was red as fire."

Again, some might interpret this to mean Narya was now visible. Not me though... not yet anyway (well, I mean it was visible anyway). Plenty of folks wear rings in the Primary World of course... if you've got a magic ring and you want to keep it secret you might not want to wear it openly in front of some (those who might recognize it as a special thing)... but others will just see a ring.

... if they even notice such things that is.
Galin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2016, 10:03 AM   #42
Gothmog, LoB
Animated Skeleton
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 38
Gothmog, LoB has just left Hobbiton.
Well, I just don't buy the idea that Sauron did take the One to Númenor. Tolkien's reasoning is pretty flawed in the letter, and he clearly did not consult what he had written in The Akallabêth before or he would have stumbled on those lines claiming that Sauron put the Great Ring up again.

I mean, in context this is pretty clear. We don't have any lines mentioning Sauron leaving the One behind but if he took the One back from Númenor then he wouldn't have had no reason to pick it up somewhere - which he does in the text, in spirit form in his tower.

@Alcuin:

The problem with the reasoning there is that we have to jump through a lot of hoops to believe that no knowledge about the Rings of Power ever came to Númenor.

1. We know that there was contact between the Númenóreans and Lindon, and they eventually came to their aid. While it would make in hindsight sense for the Elves to not talk about the Rings back then Gil-galad could easily have talked about them. Even more so if he wanted to convince Telperien or Minastir to come to their aid.

2. Three great Númenóreans became Nazgûl. We don't know how or when exactly, nor who those guys were in life but if such a transformation did occur in Númenor then the Kings would have learned about that.

3. More importantly they would later also clashed with the Nazgûl on occasion in their wars in Middle-earth.

Tolkien himself fails to provide us with the possibility that the One might have been invisible, making it unlikely that this was the case. His scenario is that Ar-Pharazôn did not recognize the One as being important.

The idea that the One could be hidden the same way the Three obviously were doesn't feel right to me. It is an instrument of enormous power, it *wants* to be seen and the power its wearer gains through it would be visible, too. I doubt that a Sauron wearing the Ring could successfully fool the Númenóreans into believing that he was weak and so on. The Ring would have made Sauron appear powerful and regal, like the Maia he was, and that would have been more of an obstacle than a help.

Whether the Three can be made invisible or not is another matter, but one we don't have to decide. Gandalf, Galadriel, and Elrond should all have the power to conceal such an item without using its power but rather other innate powers they do have.

The idea that characters just don't recognize any visible rings for what they are makes no sense because Saruman kept Gandalf imprisoned at Orthanc. If he can take his staff from him he should also be able to Narya from him but he didn't. One assumes that Gandalf was indeed somehow able to conceal the Ring from Saruman.

This example would suggests that perhaps there was some 'invisibility spell' on the Three, or that the Three indeed gave their wearers the ability to keep them hidden. IF Gandalf tried to hide Narya with some Maia tricks from Saruman one assumes he would have seen through that.

But in the case of the One I don't think invisibility of the Ring itself was an option.
Gothmog, LoB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2016, 10:33 AM   #43
Zigûr
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
 
Zigûr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 699
Zigûr is a guest at the Prancing Pony.Zigûr is a guest at the Prancing Pony.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gothmog, LoB View Post
2. Three great Númenóreans became Nazgûl. We don't know how or when exactly, nor who those guys were in life but if such a transformation did occur in Númenor then the Kings would have learned about that.
According to the Tale of Years the Nazgûl appeared in 2251, but the Shadow fell on Númenor around 1800 and they began colonising Middle-earth in that time. My suspicion would be that Sauron gave three of the Nine to Númenóreans who were in charge of, or at least Men of significance in, Númenórean dominions in Middle-earth, which would lead me to imagine that they were not in Númenor when their gradual transformation into wraiths occurred.
__________________
"Since the evening of that day we have journeyed from the shadow of Tol Brandir."
"On foot?" cried Éomer.
Zigûr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2016, 11:18 AM   #44
Alcuin
Haunting Spirit
 
Alcuin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Nurn
Posts: 72
Alcuin has just left Hobbiton.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zigûr View Post
According to the Tale of Years the Nazgûl appeared in 2251, but the Shadow fell on Númenor around 1800 and they began colonising Middle-earth in that time. My suspicion would be that Sauron gave three of the Nine to Númenóreans who were in charge of, or at least Men of significance in, Númenórean dominions in Middle-earth, which would lead me to imagine that they were not in Númenor when their gradual transformation into wraiths occurred.
I wrote an essay on this many years ago. “The Shadow falls on Númenor” is probably a reference to Sauron’s ensnaring three lords of the Númenóreans, whose influence began (or accelerated) the corruption of Númenórean society.

We know Sauron took the One Ring with him because Tolkien tells us he did. (Letters 211, already cited in this thread.) The body he first made for himself could shift form (“Beren and Lúthien” in Silmarillion: he shifted to a gigantic wolf in an attempt to kill Huan, then shifted to a great vampire bat when Lúthien released him after he yielded Tol Sirion to her; later he shifted his appearance in his disguise as “Annatar”) was destroyed when Númenor fell into the abyss, and his spirit – with the Ring – fled to Mordor. There he constructed a new body for himself (expending energy doing this: Letter 199, already cited in this thread.) but the new body he made was unable to shift form. (If you have not considered it before, it is described in terms very like Durin’s Bane, like a Balrog: man-shaped, larger than a man but not gigantic, of profound darkness.) When Tolkien wrote that Sauron “took up again his great Ring in Barad-dûr”, a reasonable literal interpretation is that he put it on his new hand. (That interpretation is in accord with Galin’s in this thread.)

It certainly seems the Rings of Power connected the visible world to the invisible in order to slow the effects of Time. Slowing the effect of Time is a primary Elvish motive in making the Rings of Power: Elven regret of loss due to time is the weakness Sauron used to tempt them into using his techniques (his “science” or “engineering”, if you will) to resolve what he convinced them perceive as a problem. We aren’t told this explicitly, but it sounds as if the methods Sauron used to slow the effects of time were necromantic in nature. The Great Rings made Men (and Hobbits) invisible as a result, but not Dwarves. We can assume they did not make Elves invisible, and I think that’s correct, but we only know it for certain about the Three, because we know for certain Galadriel was wearing Nenya but remained visible. Bombadil caused the One Ring to vanish, which rather suggests he moved it completely into the invisible (“wraith”) world for a moment. (Bombadil was also able to see Frodo when Frodo put on the Ring.)

Taken together, this offers a “mechanism” consistent with the mythos for the Keepers of the Three to hide their Rings from sight, or at least from the sight of Mortals: They could move their Rings into the invisible (“wraith”) world. The Eldar in the Third Age, some of whom (e.g., Glorfindel) could see the invisible world, would hardly tell Sauron’s spies and allies where the Three were disposed even if they could see them.

If you want absolute confirmation one way or another, Gothmog, LoB, you will have to wait to see if Tolkien opined on this in his voluminous notes kept in the J.R.R. Tolkien Collection at Marquette University and Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford. He certainly he mused upon it, and it since he seems to have been in the habit of writing down his musings, there’s a good chance it’s buried somewhere in his notes. But I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for anyone to find and publish it.
Alcuin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2016, 02:29 PM   #45
Kuruharan
Regal Dwarven Shade
 
Kuruharan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: A Remote Dwarven Hold
Posts: 3,558
Kuruharan is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.Kuruharan is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.
Boots

Quote:
Originally Posted by Galin View Post
In The Grey Havens (second edition version here) the story tells: "As he turned and came towards them Frodo saw that Gandalf now wore openly on his hand the Third Ring, Narya the Great, and the stone upon it was red as fire."
Good catch, I had forgotten that incident.

However, I think that the emphasis on that should be on the word openly implying that at some point in the past he had not worn it openly.
Kuruharan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2016, 05:05 PM   #46
Gothmog, LoB
Animated Skeleton
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 38
Gothmog, LoB has just left Hobbiton.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zigûr View Post
According to the Tale of Years the Nazgûl appeared in 2251, but the Shadow fell on Númenor around 1800 and they began colonising Middle-earth in that time. My suspicion would be that Sauron gave three of the Nine to Númenóreans who were in charge of, or at least Men of significance in, Númenórean dominions in Middle-earth, which would lead me to imagine that they were not in Númenor when their gradual transformation into wraiths occurred.
That is plausible to an extent but we have to keep in mind that the people ensnared by the Nine were (quoting from memory) 'the kings, warriors, and sorcerers of old'. There was no Númenórean king among them, of course, so this category is off the table, and we also don't know whether there were any sorcerers in Númenor (that is not a positive profession in Tolkien's work, so one would look for those also among the men of Middle-earth).

That leaves the warriors. However, considering the life expectancy of the Númenóreans and the fact that Sauron would have been interested in learning more about Númenor it seems unlikely that none of the future Nazgûl didn't at least visit Númenor prior to their transformation.

I'm with you that they probably didn't become Nazgûl on the island but there would have been there occasionally, and people should have realized that something was wrong with them. Say, they might have grown very ambitious, over-reaching themselves, uncovering secrets nobody should know and revealing knowledge nobody among the Dúnedain had any ideas about.

And depending how old they were when they got the Rings (if there were members of the Line of Elros among them they must have received later in life or else they wouldn't have yet been wraiths around 2251 SA) people around them must have realized that something was wrong with them.

Even if they spend most of their time in some Númenórean colonies in Middle-earth other Númenóreans would have been with them and reported stuff back.

@Alcuin:

Actually, the Ósanwe-kenta indicates that Tolkien changed his view on Sauron's body. It was actually first destroyed (at least in known history) during his confrontation with Huan and Lúthien in the Lay of Leithian.

We also don't know whether Sauron was continuously embodied after that. We have no account on his role during the War of Wrath, after all, but we do know that he took on his fair hue when he presented himself to Eonwe. Whether this was done 'from scratch' (i.e. with him having no body before) or whether he just changed his physical body is unclear.

Reading into your essay I think we can resolve the discrepancy between Minastir and Telperien resolve simply by making her the one who sent the fleet and Minastir the one who lead it as her heir and general. The idea that she of all queens was forced to do anything is very unlikely considering how she is described. And dating her death back decades would destroy what little we know about her age and strength of will.

The idea of the Shadow having something to do with the later Nazgûl is interesting in general, but I don't think this is really necessary. The Kings didn't need some evil whisperer telling them that the Ban was crap. That they could figure out themselves, or rather their innate and growing pride and hubris could do that for them.

The identity of the Witch-king is an interesting topic to speculate. If he was of the royal line he could easily have been merely a member of a more distant cadet branch. Considering the Númenórean marriage practice there would have been a lot of relatives of the various kings over the years, not just the Lords of Andunie. And those of the Line of Elros could easily have had influence on the council or behind the scenes even without being members of the royal family.

As to the invisibility:

This should be feature that all wielders of the Rings of Power should be able to control as soon as they learned to properly use them (which Frodo, Bilbo, Gollum, and Isildur never did). The Nine most likely did not become invisible to other men just when they put their rings on but only when they deliberately wanted to walk around unseen.

We don't know whether the Three included that feature but if they did then there is even a small chance that a Noldo wearer of a Ring of Power could have used its might to hide himself from his peers because the ring extended his power to such a degree to pull this off. What the purpose of this would have been I don't know.

Your explanation about 'Sauron taking up the Great Ring' doesn't convince me, though. In The Akallabêth Sauron's spirit takes up the Ring, not his new body, and that makes only sense if he didn't have it on him when he came back to Barad-dûr in spirit form.

In fact, this version of events (rather than the one from Of the Rings of Power better explains how quickly Sauron restored his body. Being close to and in spirit form *possessing* the One helped him create himself a new body. The ringless Sauron in the Third Age needs centuries or even millennia to restore his body. We don't know when exactly it is *complete* but one can argue that Sauron was not yet fully embodied again by the time Gandalf went to Dol Guldur in 2063 TA.
Gothmog, LoB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2016, 06:32 PM   #47
Morthoron
Curmudgeonly Wordwraith
 
Morthoron's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Ensconced in curmudgeonly pursuits
Posts: 2,262
Morthoron is lost in the dark paths of Moria.Morthoron is lost in the dark paths of Moria.Morthoron is lost in the dark paths of Moria.Morthoron is lost in the dark paths of Moria.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gothmog, LoB View Post
That is plausible to an extent but we have to keep in mind that the people ensnared by the Nine were (quoting from memory) 'the kings, warriors, and sorcerers of old'. There was no Númenórean king among them, of course, so this category is off the table, and we also don't know whether there were any sorcerers in Númenor (that is not a positive profession in Tolkien's work, so one would look for those also among the men of Middle-earth).

That leaves the warriors. However, considering the life expectancy of the Númenóreans and the fact that Sauron would have been interested in learning more about Númenor it seems unlikely that none of the future Nazgûl didn't at least visit Númenor prior to their transformation.
Actually, in a footnote to Letter 156 (4 November, 1954), Tolkien wrote:

Quote:
* There were evil Númenóreans: Sauronians, but they do not come into this story, except remotely; as the wicked Kings who had become the Nazgûl or Ringwriaths.
The emphasis is mine. Also, in another missive, Letter 131 (undated, likely 1951), Tolkien delineates the area of suzerainty of these evil Númenórean Kings, sub-kings and sorcerous lords:

Quote:
The Númenóreans carry their evil also to Middle-earth and there become cruel and wicked lords of necromancy, slaying and tormenting men; and the old legends are overlaid with dark tales of horror. This does not happen, however, in the North-West; for thither, because of the Elves, only the Faithful who remain Elf-friends will come. The chief haven of the good Númenóreans is near the mouth of the great river Anduin.
Again, the emphasis is mine. So, we are talking far south of Lebennin, Pelargir and Harondor, even further than Umbar (not yet overrun by Corsairs). The King in Númenór would have limited sway over the self-professed Númenórean kings and lords of Far Harad; in fact, in HoME 12, The Peoples of ME in the "Tale of Years" for the dates 2000-3000 2nd Age, we find the mention of "The King's Folk establish lordships in Umbar and Harad and in many other places on the coasts of the Great Lands"; undoubtedly, one of those "lords of necromancy" would eventually become the Witch-King. Later mentions of Herumor and Fuinir being Númenórean Lords of the Haradrim and even the mention of the Mouth of Sauron being a Black Númenórean (which I find fascinating, as Tolkien referred to that race as "dwindled" centuries before MoS could possibly have been born), articulate Tolkien's continued association of Evil or eventually Black Númenórean kingdoms to the far South.

So, yes, the Númenóreans who became Ringwraiths were Kings, sorcerors or lords of necromancy. They, above all other races in Middle-earth, would have the necromantic knowledge spurred in Númenór and present even in a distant descendant like the Mouth of Sauron, who learned the Black Arts directly from Sauron himself. Even the "Good" Númenóreans created items "wound about with spells for the bane of Mordor", as the Blades of Westernesse could attest.
__________________
Please visit my newly resurrected blog...The Dark Elf File...a slightly skewed journal of music and literary comment, fan-fiction and interminable essays.

Last edited by Morthoron; 08-13-2016 at 01:03 PM.
Morthoron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2016, 09:38 PM   #48
Zigûr
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
 
Zigûr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 699
Zigûr is a guest at the Prancing Pony.Zigûr is a guest at the Prancing Pony.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gothmog, LoB View Post
Even if they spend most of their time in some Númenórean colonies in Middle-earth other Númenóreans would have been with them and reported stuff back.
That's certainly possible, although even if strange things happened it doesn't mean that the Númenóreans became aware of the Rings. As Morthoron has offered, they may have become essentially lords of rogue colonies who paid lip service to Armenelos without having too much direct contact. I'm imagining a "Mister Kurtz in Heart of Darkness" type situation in which Númenórean lords in Harad are still nominally under the authority of the empire but are sufficiently isolated and/or cautious that they operate with virtual autonomy. It's also possible that before anything too "strange" happened the Númenórean Ringbearers faked their own deaths, abdicated or disappeared and then went to join Sauron, which might have been suspicious, but not sufficiently telling to indicate with much specificity what was happening.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gothmog, LoB View Post
The idea of the Shadow having something to do with the later Nazgûl is interesting in general, but I don't think this is really necessary. The Kings didn't need some evil whisperer telling them that the Ban was crap. That they could figure out themselves, or rather their innate and growing pride and hubris could do that for them.
I agree with this. While Alcuin's essay is interesting, I don't think there's necessarily a correlation between the Rings and the darkening of Númenor, and in some respects I think it's more thematically effective if there isn't - after all, Sauron himself is "but a servant or emissary", not the sole source of evil in the later Ages. We could also go down the "textual history" route of arguing that the Númenor story was invented before the Rings of Power story, but admittedly in early (1937) versions of Númenor the darkening did not really happen in any great degree (although there was some discontent) until Sauron himself came.
__________________
"Since the evening of that day we have journeyed from the shadow of Tol Brandir."
"On foot?" cried Éomer.
Zigûr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-18-2016, 12:47 AM   #49
Alcuin
Haunting Spirit
 
Alcuin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Nurn
Posts: 72
Alcuin has just left Hobbiton.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gothmog, LoB View Post
Actually, the Ósanwe-kenta indicates that Tolkien changed his view on Sauron's body. It was actually first destroyed (at least in known history) during his confrontation with Huan and Lúthien in the Lay of Leithian.

We also don't know whether Sauron was continuously embodied after that. We have no account on his role during the War of Wrath, after all, but we do know that he took on his fair hue when he presented himself to Eonwe. Whether this was done 'from scratch' (i.e. with him having no body before) or whether he just changed his physical body is unclear.
Assuming that Tolkien has not made a “slip of the pen”, that his son Christopher has somehow overlooked his father’s intention to change the story, and that Carl Hofstetter (for whose work I have great regard) has discovered the “correct” storyline, we are still left with the tale of Beren and Lúthien as it stands: When released by Huan (or his body was destroyed by Huan as you (and Hofstetter?)), propose Sauron immediately takes up the form of a giant vampire bat and flew off to Dorthonion (Taur-nu-Fuin) to terrorize folks there. (He did not, it would seem, return to Thangorodrim, since Lúthien had humiliated him: while he might not be unhoused before Morgoth, still his master would have long held him in contempt.) If Sauron immediately took up a form, and if it takes Ainur some time to resettle themselves into a form after being “unhoused”, Sauron must surely have been far stronger than any of the other Maiar!

On the other hand, maybe Sauron was not stripped of his form at Tol Sirion, and either the writing is not in accord with the rest of the mythos or its reporter (Hofstetter) has misinterpreted the document: For in fact as Note 5 in Ósanwe-kenta observes,
Quote:
Some of [Morgoth’s] greatest servants … became wedded to the forms of their evil deeds, and if these bodies were taken from them or destroyed, they were nullified, until they had rebuilt a semblance of their former habitations, with which they could continue the evil courses in which they had become fixed
The paragraph immediately following the one with Note 5 at its end quotes Pengoloð: “This seems not to accord with the histories.” My citation is not quite fair, since Pengoloð is now discussion Morgoth’s ability to deceive and dominate the sámar (minds or intellects) of the Ainur and Children of Eru; but it seems appropriately placed for this discussion. It is also appropriate that Sauron was indeed unhoused – twice, even without any mischance to his hröa at the hand of Lúthien (or rather the teeth of Huan), in the wreck of Númenor and on the slopes of Orodruin – before the Ring was destroyed. Both times, it took him long to reshape a new hröa. It does not stand to reason, IMO, that Huan unhoused him at Tol Sirion: otherwise, he’d not have surrendered the fortress to Lúthien, and it would seem most unbecoming of the daughter of Melian to offer to release her enemy for the mastery of the tower and then slay his physical form after he did so.

You cite Ósanwe-kenta yet continue to ignore Letter 211:
Quote:
Though reduced to “a spirit of hatred borne on a dark wind”, I do not think one need boggle at this spirit carrying off the One Ring, upon which his power of dominating minds now largely depended.
But perhaps you (and Hofstetter, I suppose) are right after all.

FWIW, I doubt Hofstetter misinterpreted the document. I do think what it says about Sauron being unhoused by Huan at Tol Sirion is not in accord with the rest of the published corpus, however; and that we should be reticent to accept it, since not only the story is told and retold without Huan’s wrecking Sauron’s hröa, but because it makes Lúthien a faithless negotiator, something I judge untenable in the mythos.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Gothmog, LoB View Post
…they probably didn't become Nazgûl on the island but there would have been there occasionally, and people should have realized that something was wrong with them. Say, they might have grown very ambitious, over-reaching themselves, uncovering secrets nobody should know and revealing knowledge nobody among the Dúnedain had any ideas about.

And depending how old they were when they got the Rings (if there were members of the Line of Elros among them they must have received later in life or else they wouldn't have yet been wraiths around 2251 SA) people around them must have realized that something was wrong with them.

Even if they spend most of their time in some Númenórean colonies in Middle-earth other Númenóreans would have been with them and reported stuff back.
This is exactly the point of the essay. At least one – and I suspect only one – of the Númenóreans ensnared by Sauron with a Ring was from the House of Elros. They had lifespans almost twice as long as other Númenóreans, about 400 years, whereas “regular” Númenóreans were living to about 250 years. A Númenórean born into the House of Elros about S.A. 1650 would have run his life expectancy by about S.A. 2050; like Bilbo, he’d have gone on a little longer, “like butter scraped over too much bread”, and soon returned to Middle-earth to complete his journey to the Dark Side and enter wraithdom. I doubt any of the Nazgûl-to-be were still in Númenor when the embassy arrived from Valinor to debate with Tar-Atanamir, an event I suspect happened in the second half of his reign, after 2120 or later. The Nazgûl did not appear for another century. In the meantime, Atanamir would “know” from personal experience that at least one of his kinsmen lived to very old age, perhaps 500 years or more, before that old but very vigorous and alert man returned to Middle-earth, where he vanished. (And besides that, if Bilbo and Frodo are any indication, the man would not look old.) Little wonder that as King of Númenor, he rebuffed the ambassadors from Valinor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gothmog, LoB View Post
Reading into your essay I think we can resolve the discrepancy between Minastir and Telperien resolve simply by making her the one who sent the fleet and Minastir the one who lead it as her heir and general. The idea that she of all queens was forced to do anything is very unlikely considering how she is described. And dating her death back decades would destroy what little we know about her age and strength of will.
We are not far apart on this. My suggestion is that from about S.A. 1700, Minastir served as co-regent with his aunt, Telperiën, who remained on the throne until shortly before her death. There was a case of this in Gondor: Narmacil I had little interest in affairs of state and so made his nephew, Minalcar, Karma-kundo or regent. Minalcar remained Karma-kundo when his father Calmacil succeeded Narmacil, finally becoming king in his own right as Rómendacil II. What I suggest is that Telperiën had little interest in building a fleet, but understanding the danger, handed all such matters over to her heir and nephew, Minastir, giving him authority to act as regent in Middle-earth and in all affairs regarding the war. This would make them co-rulers for many decades, perhaps a half-century or more. Minastir’s grandson Atanamir was the first to refuse to lay down his life, which means that Telperiën was a “good” Númenórean and left of her own free will (“gave back the Gift”, as Tolkien puts it) when her time arrived. You mention her “strength of will”, and I agree with you: remaining Ruling Queen until the very last makes it clear that she, not Minastir, was senior ruler during their co-regency. This also has the benefit of explaining the “Tale of Years” entry for S.A. 1700: “Tar-Minastir sends a great navy from Númenor to Lindon” – he sent it and was in royal command, and Tar-Telperiën was still on the throne for another 30 years.

This brings up one more item – again, off-topic – but Minastir could not have been a proud person. He was king, and he is rightly attributed a great military victory, even though it doesn’t appear as if Telperiën let him lead the expeditionary force to Middle-earth. His aunt seems wise enough to let him lead a mission that consumed massive resources in Númenor and must have taken many of its best men, some of whom did not return or returned grievously wounded: that is the nature of warfare. But he seems to have been willing to operate within the bounds Telperiën set, did this successfully, and achieved his aim. Later, his son Ciryatan constrained his father to give up the throne before Minastir was ready – and “the Shadow falls on Númenor”. Were Minastir a proud man, he would have refused.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Zigûr View Post
…I don't think there's necessarily a correlation between the Rings and the darkening of Númenor, and in some respects I think it's more thematically effective if there isn't - after all, Sauron himself is "but a servant or emissary", not the sole source of evil in the later Ages. We could also go down the "textual history" route of arguing that the Númenor story was invented before the Rings of Power story, but admittedly in early (1937) versions of Númenor the darkening did not really happen in any great degree (although there was some discontent) until Sauron himself came.
My position is that “the Shadow falls on Númenor” is Tolkien tying the events of Lord of the Rings through the three Númenórean Nazgûl into his older tales. Since you are the (about-to-be-published) Tolkien scholar, I’ll make a bet with you: I’ll bet that somewhere in those musty boxes in Milwaukee or Oxford, someone will find the old professor’s scribblings on the origins of at least the Lord of the Nazgûl.
Alcuin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2016, 06:31 PM   #50
Marwhini
Wight
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 144
Marwhini has just left Hobbiton.
This is a tough one.

But given that we have evidence in The History of Middle-earth that Tolkien regularly forgot what he had written only a few pages back that this is a situation where Tolkien might not have thought too clearly about whether Sauron took the Ruling Ring with him to Númenóre.

There are arguments to be made both ways.

And the Metaphysical Aspects of Middle-earth cut both ways as well (they support either side of the argument as well).

MB
Marwhini is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2016, 12:07 PM   #51
William Cloud Hicklin
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
 
William Cloud Hicklin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 1,457
William Cloud Hicklin is a guest at the Prancing Pony.William Cloud Hicklin is a guest at the Prancing Pony.
"I’ll bet that somewhere in those musty boxes in Milwaukee or Oxford, someone will find the old professor’s scribblings on the origins of at least the Lord of the Nazgûl."

Maybe, but I doubt it.

With the exception of the final typescripts and a few earlier drafts for the LR, Hobbit and Mr Bliss which went to Marquette, Tolkien kept all his papers and Christopher inherited them. CT has over time sent most of them to Milwaukee if LR or Hobbit related, or the Bodleian if not; but in all cases only after going through them with a fine-toothed comb, generally after having been reviewed for possible publication in HME. At the time HME XII came out he commented that "the well is just about dry;" and I strongly suspect that if something as momentous as a thumbnail bio of the Witch-king were there, he would have published it as he did with the Glorfindel essays and the like.
__________________
“It is good to be both loved and feared; but if one cannot be both, it is better to be feared than loved" --Machiavelli
William Cloud Hicklin is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:54 PM.



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.