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Old 01-20-2003, 01:55 PM   #1
-culavariel-
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Shield The hands of a king is the hands of a healer???

Ok... i ahve a question i've been wondering about since i saw the movies + read the books, which was around the same time.
In movie #1 when Frodo is stabbed by a Wraith, Aragorn clearly says: "This is beyond my skill of healing, he needs Elven medicine", but in the last book Aragorn can suddenly heal both Eowyn and Merry from the same type of wound, given the same plant, Kingsfoil. Why's that???
thanx if u answer this, cuz i can't really figure it out....
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Old 01-20-2003, 02:11 PM   #2
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Hello, Culavariel, Welcome to the downs.

I believe Frodo's wound was different than Eowyn's Merry's or Faramir's.

Frodo still had a piece of the blade left in the wound, which was working it's way to his heart; not so with Faramir or Eowyn. All four had a case of the "Black Breath" from coming in contact with the ring wraiths,thus the use of the Ahtelas, but other than that their wounds were different.

Eowyn broke her arm and was suffering from depression.


Faramir was struck by a poisoned arrow I recall Aragorn asking who withdrew the arrow and Prince Imrahil said he had. It was the poison, not the wound that was so serious in his case.

I don't remember Merry's wounds being very serious. The arm he struck the Witch King with went cold.

[ January 20, 2003: Message edited by: Raefindel ]
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Old 01-20-2003, 02:38 PM   #3
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OK, Here is what I could find about Athelas;

Quote:
this plant was of great healing virtue brought to Middle-Earth, it is said, by the Numenoreans of the Second Age. It grew sparsely in the North and lnly in places where the Men of Westernesse had passed. The plant was certainly known in Numenor, here the Valinorean name asea aranion was used; but in Gondor, where this 'kingsfoil' grew abundantly, its healing properties were unknown and the leaves were esteemed only for their refreshing scent. Nonetheless, by some trick or chance, the wives of the Southkingdom still repeated, without understanding its true meaning;

When the black breath blows
and death's shadow grows
come athelas! come athelas!
Life to the dying
In the king's hand lying!
Why it works for the King is not mentioned.
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Old 01-20-2003, 04:49 PM   #4
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1420!

Remember, Aragorn was not king yet. He had not claimed his kingship when Frodo was stabbed. So, not being king, he coud not heal like that. Tolkien can be very technical in writing and wording. I think he did this, to emphasise how kingly Aragorn was, when he claimed it.

But, I don't think Aragorn said that in the books anyways.
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Old 01-20-2003, 05:06 PM   #5
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1420!

Ok, here's what Aragorn says in the books
Quote:
'...Few now have the skill in healing to match such evil weapons. But I will do what I can.'
And then
Quote:
'...It has great virtues, but over such a wound as this its healing powers may be small.'
So I think a lot of it had to do with the type of wound as Raefindel said. And about the movie's lines, that was just another stupid idea of the script writers' and PJ. They really changed too much, for the worse, but I won't get started on that.

And the other big part of it, was that Aragorn was not king yet, as I said earlier. He might have done a better job if he was teh king, but besides that type of wound, they were outdoors, not in Gondor's 'hospital', Aragorn didn't ahve the tools necessary for operating on it. So, I think that in the movie, it was meant that they needed to get to Rivendell, which they should have said instead.

And if you want to know some more about kingsfoil, read A knife in the Dark, that chapter has some info.

And, please don't compare the books to the movies. You can if you want, and I'm not angry at you or anything, but it just doesn't work. If you don't believe me, you will sooner or later. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

[ January 20, 2003: Message edited by: MLD-Grounds-Keeper-Willie ]
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Old 01-20-2003, 06:10 PM   #6
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That Aragorn was not yet King is not a part of it at all. Forget that, being King offers no special virtues. It is a prophecy, not special magic to grant him skills. The King will be able to heal because he has special skills and training, not the King has special skills because he is King.

[ January 20, 2003: Message edited by: burrahobbit ]
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Old 01-21-2003, 03:21 AM   #7
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1420!

Remember that the movie (sorry to mention the m word, but someone else brought it up) portrayal of Aragorn's healing skills in FOTR is significantly different from the book. In the book, Aragorn treats Frodo in the dell, bruising the Athelas with his hands and steaming it in water, to take full advantage of its properties. Moviegorn puts it in his mouth, chews it, and slaps it on Frodo's shoulder days after the actual stabbing. Hands of a munter. Also, he does not tend to Frodo's wound after The Temple of Khazad Doom (don't steal that, I kind of like it), whereas in the book he is able to heal Frodo and Sam quite well.

So I believe the answer to the original question is the poor portrayal of Aragorn's knowledge of Athelas (kingsfoil, the use of which was known by the king) in the movie. Also, I believe Moviegorn says that Frodo needs Elvis medicine. Listen closely.
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Old 01-21-2003, 07:28 AM   #8
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Quote:
Also, I believe Moviegorn says that Frodo needs Elvis medicine
ROFL. Well, the last installment IS called Return of the KING, is it not? (Has blue suede been invented in ME yet?)
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Old 01-21-2003, 12:18 PM   #9
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ok thanx!!!!
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Old 01-22-2003, 06:20 AM   #10
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Pipe

The hands of the King are the hands of a healer but I don't think that the King was expected to cure all illnesses.

In England, until the 17th century, the King had to show his healing abilities but only once a year, on Maundy Thursday, with a very small group of people with only one disease, known as The King's Evil. It is a form of tuberculosis, called scrofula.

Maybe Aragorn was simillarly limited, able to cure only a few diseases or injuries on special occasions.

[ January 22, 2003: Message edited by: Selmo ]
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Old 01-22-2003, 12:56 PM   #11
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No. Aragorn needed to know how to fix broken people because he lived in the woods and if he didn't know then he would die and his people would die. He has the ability for great skills because he is special, not he has great skills because he is special.
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Old 01-22-2003, 05:12 PM   #12
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Right, Aragorn wasn't King yet when Frodo was wounded. But neither was he yet, when he cured Eowyn, Faramir and Merry. I mean, he hadn't made any claim, and was recognized by citizens (Ioreth and others) AFTER the act of healing.
Thus I don't believe the abilities for healing had much if anything to do with his current 'social status'. It must be in the family. Aragorn says:
Quote:
Would that Elrond were here, for he is the eldest of all our race, and has the greater power.
I suppose the RACE mentioned here is not elves, as Elrond is definitely not the oldest of them, but Numenorians. The power Aragorn has must be attributed to his partly elven blood, as well as the long-forgotten knowledge of Numenorians.
As for the prophetic rhyme, people must have passed through generations what their Kings of old could do. And the next one (chance he comes) was supposed to have the same abilities, coming from the same family and getting the same 'education'.

Why wasn't he a success with Frodo's wound? I fully accept Raefindel 's explanation
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Old 01-22-2003, 10:04 PM   #13
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Quote:
I suppose the RACE mentioned here is not elves, as Elrond is definitely not the oldest of them, but Numenorians.
Hokey smokes, Bullwinkle!! Do you know I must have read this book 30 or 40 times and I NEVER made that observation? I never even noticed the wording before. Excellent point, akhtene! Thank you for teaching me another new ME tidbit.
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Old 01-22-2003, 11:14 PM   #14
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Technically both Elves and Men (and I suppose Dwarves) could be called one race as the Eruhini. (Children of Eru.)
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Old 01-22-2003, 11:34 PM   #15
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But if you take it that way then Aragorn is very wrong. Galadriel is a lot older.
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Old 01-24-2003, 05:22 AM   #16
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Shield

Quote:
Elrond is definitely not the oldest of them, but Numenorians.
Excellent point, he is certainly not the oldest of the elves. Possibly Glorfindel is older, so Elrond may not even hold these bragging rights in his own house! But you seem to miss the fact that he was not a Nmenrean. Old or young, he simply never was one. If he was, he would be nothing but bones by the time of the War of the Ring.

I think that the word "race" might have been a little hasty for JRRT to use, or that possibly we are reading it too literally. I have always taken it to mean something like "kind", as in he is the eldest of our kind, our profession, healers. I don't think that there is an older healer in Middle-Earth, and these seem to be skills possessed only by a few. No mention is made in Lothlorien of Galadriel having healing powers, although ample opportunity is given since Frodo and Sam were both hurt in Moria.
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