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Old 12-13-2014, 12:16 PM   #81
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 981
Galin has been trapped in the Barrow!
Originally Posted by jallanite View Post
In Fellowship, page 131, Tolkien writes:
When they [the hobbits] caught his [Tom’s] words again they found that he had now wandered into strange regions beyond their memory and beyond their waking thought, into times when the world was wider, and the seas flowed straight to the western Shore; and still on and back Tom went singing out into the ancient starlight, when only the Elf-sires were awake.
That the Undying Lands were once on Earth is part of Tolkien’s thought in all his writing. The removal of the Undying Lands from the circles of the world at the time of the drowning of Númenor is being referred to here. Tom is telling of days before the Undying Lands were removed.
I agree. I didn't refer to this section as I think it's more easily explained than the reference to the seas being bent.

In Morgoth’s Ring (HoME 10), page 377-78, Tolkien writes of the waking of the Elf-sires:[INDENT]From the far North (where [they are] dense) to the middle (Endor) great clouds brood. Moon and stars are invisible. Day is only a dim twilight at full. Only light [is] in Valinor. [... cut for brevity...] In The War of the Jewels (HoME 11), beginning on page 420, Tolkien relates an Elvish legend of the waking of the first Elves, in which several groups of Elves awake on different days, each beneath the stars of early twilight before the dawn.
Yes I think the legend of the Awakening of the Quendi, a very Elvish legend, could be a nice way to represent the matter of the Sun in comparison to the mixed (Elvish and Manish) Silmarillion. Possibly also the legend of the death of Ambarussa for example, though not that (I've any proof that) Tolkien was prepared to employ this as a separate Elvish account distinct from Quenta Silmarillion (in any case).

In Fellowship, page 131, Tolkien has Tom claim:
When the Elves passed westward, Tom was here already, before the seas were bent.
This refers to later accounts in which after the drowning of Númenor and the removal of the Undying Lands from Earth, Elves could still sail there following the old track whereas the vessels of Men normally followed the bent seas and were therefore bound to Earth, no matter how far they sailed.

At least this is how I interpret these references.
That works. My attempt was that the seas were (or could be said to be) 'bent' into the great chasm when Numenor fell and Aman was taken away.

The reference to Thingol on page 1128 of Return reads:
There Thingol Greycloak of Doriath was their king, and in the long twilight their tongue had changed with the changefulness of mortal lands and had become far estranged from the speech of the Eldar beyond the Sea.
Twilight literally refers to the light in the sky just preceding full sunrise or just following full sunset. Metaphorically it may refer to light that is similar in some way. The reign of Thingol before the raising of the Moon and Sun in the Silmarillion is literally a reign under the darkness of night, not a reign illuminated by literal twilight. As already mentioned, in The Hobbit, Tolkien had originally written, “the Wood Elves lingered in the twilight before the raising of the Sun and Moon” but in the edition published in 1966 changed the text to, “the Wood Elves lingered in the twilight of our Sun and Moon”. I think this later text represents the metaphor intended by Tolkien here, that Thingol reigns under what is a long twilight in comparison to the Undying Lands beyond the Sea illuminated by the Two Trees.
Just to state it, and this being obviously subjective: I find 'twilight' as in 'the period under the stars' quite beautiful and poetic, and this reference from The Hobbit (before revised) is of course echoed in the Silmarillion traditions, or at least the Annals of Aman, in the early 1950s phase.

My reaction to this revision in The Hobbit centered on the special emphasis, (noted in the Appendix on Calendars in The Return of the King) that the Eldar placed on the two twilights, morning and evening (the question of these Silvan Elves being Eldar or not aside here. And of course they are Elves, and Eldar in the sense of 'Star-folk' in any event). And if taken to mean a period of time, to me it would stretch from the creation of the Sun to our day.

But you make a good point here, as, if the Dome of Varda is in place this could be a period of time in contrast to a time before the death of the Trees, after which the Dome would be removed and the two places would be lit in the same way.

If I read you correctly here, that is.

Tolkien’s reference to Trolls on page 1132 of Return reads:
In their beginnings far back in the twilight of the Elder Days, these were creatures of dull and lumpish nature and had no more language than beasts.
Here I think Tolkien is metaphorically referring to the years of cloudy darkness brought on by Morgoth.

I admit that neither of these meanings can be proved from the texts.
This twilight I don't find very beautiful given that it is dim day caused by smoke and clouds, but on the other hand it arguaby connects well to Trolls.

Thanks for the considered response!

Last edited by Galin; 12-13-2014 at 12:30 PM.
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