The Barrow-Downs Discussion Forum


Visit The *EVEN NEWER* Barrow-Downs Photo Page

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


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 02-14-2011, 02:40 AM   #1
Galadriel
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
 
Galadriel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: In Eldamar beside the walls of Elven Tirion
Posts: 551
Galadriel has just left Hobbiton.
Can the Valar Sentence People to Death?

What I mean is, can they sentence Elves to death? I'm probably asking a stupid question, since I've possibly overlooked this aspect, but I'd like to know, thanks. I know they can curse them, but killing is another thing. Though I suppose because the Noldor were put under a curse they were killed.
__________________
"Hey! Come derry dol! Can you hear me singing?" – Tom Bombadil
Galadriel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2011, 03:38 AM   #2
Eomer of the Rohirrim
Auspicious Wraith
 
Eomer of the Rohirrim's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: The Netherlands
Posts: 4,988
Eomer of the Rohirrim is a guest at the Prancing Pony.Eomer of the Rohirrim is a guest at the Prancing Pony.
Shield

I don't remember anything in the text about this matter, but I'm sure they would not make such a decision without consulting Eru.
__________________
Los Ingobernables de Harlond
Eomer of the Rohirrim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2011, 06:19 AM   #3
Galadriel55
Blossom of Dwimordene
 
Galadriel55's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: The realm of forgotten words
Posts: 8,043
Galadriel55 is wading through snowdrifts on Redhorn.Galadriel55 is wading through snowdrifts on Redhorn.Galadriel55 is wading through snowdrifts on Redhorn.
I don't recall any death penalties. Banishments, curses, imprisonments, other punishments, but not death. Though death can indeed be the consequesne of one of there.
__________________
"I have no great fondness for the universe, but I do live there." - Eliezer Yudkowsky
Galadriel55 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2011, 07:53 AM   #4
Mithalwen
Pilgrim Soul
 
Mithalwen's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: watching the wonga-wonga birds circle...
Posts: 9,855
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.
It is a slightly odd concept given the nature of Elvish life. If the Valar did such a thing they would in effect be confining them to Mandos for a period until their contemplation of their wrongdoing had brought them to a state of contrition such as they could be permitted to return to life and perhaps make atonement. Presumably the Valar could effect a similar confinement without having to actually execute a death sentence.

The doom of Mandos suggests to me that death is a consequence of their actions rather than a punishment for them.

I wouldn' t like to make assumptions regarding Tolkien's attitude to the death penalty which was still used in England & Wales at the time he wrote LOTR certainly, however Gandalf's words to Frodo about Gollum were a factor settling my feelings on the matter. Certainly though the death penalty exists in Gondor - Faramir says his life will be forfeit for letting Frodo go and the "penalty of old" for Beregond's crimes but they are remitted.

It just doesn't seem a likely scenario to me.
__________________
I see dead people.
Mithalwen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-16-2011, 01:14 AM   #5
Galadriel
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
 
Galadriel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: In Eldamar beside the walls of Elven Tirion
Posts: 551
Galadriel has just left Hobbiton.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eomer of the Rohirrim View Post
I don't remember anything in the text about this matter, but I'm sure they would not make such a decision without consulting Eru.
That's what I thought.

Let's assume a scenario. Suppose Maglor just randomly turns up at Alqualondë (suspension of disbelief needed at this point) and starts shooting people. Will the Valar simply banish him again, or have him killed? You can assume he lost his mind, if you like
__________________
"Hey! Come derry dol! Can you hear me singing?" – Tom Bombadil
Galadriel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-16-2011, 05:06 AM   #6
Eomer of the Rohirrim
Auspicious Wraith
 
Eomer of the Rohirrim's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: The Netherlands
Posts: 4,988
Eomer of the Rohirrim is a guest at the Prancing Pony.Eomer of the Rohirrim is a guest at the Prancing Pony.
Shield

Tulkas would tie him in knots and they'd wait for Eru to show up.
__________________
Los Ingobernables de Harlond
Eomer of the Rohirrim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-16-2011, 05:10 AM   #7
Mithalwen
Pilgrim Soul
 
Mithalwen's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: watching the wonga-wonga birds circle...
Posts: 9,855
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.
Or if he were killed to stop him killing others, that isn't exactly sentencing to death - more a form of self defence, perhaps comparable to Grima being shot by the hobbits after murdering Saruman.

Sentence does imply some sort of trial and judgement, IMO.
__________________
I see dead people.
Mithalwen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-16-2011, 06:11 AM   #8
Galadriel55
Blossom of Dwimordene
 
Galadriel55's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: The realm of forgotten words
Posts: 8,043
Galadriel55 is wading through snowdrifts on Redhorn.Galadriel55 is wading through snowdrifts on Redhorn.Galadriel55 is wading through snowdrifts on Redhorn.
I think Maglor would be either killed by the elves who defend themselves or imprisoned by the Valar (physically). I don't think they will banish him again, since it had no effect on him. What's the point of a punishent if it doesn't get the point across?
__________________
"I have no great fondness for the universe, but I do live there." - Eliezer Yudkowsky
Galadriel55 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-16-2011, 08:01 AM   #9
Andsigil
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
 
Andsigil's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: The Deepest Forges of Ered Luin
Posts: 731
Andsigil is a guest of Tom Bombadil.
I'd say they sentenced a lot of people on Numenor to death.
__________________
Even as fog continues to lie in the valleys, so does ancient sin cling to the low places, the depression in the world consciousness.
Andsigil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-16-2011, 08:41 AM   #10
Inziladun
Gruesome Spectre
 
Inziladun's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Heaven's doorstep
Posts: 7,558
Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eomer of the Rohirrim View Post
I don't remember anything in the text about this matter, but I'm sure they would not make such a decision without consulting Eru.
This is in line with my thoughts. Judgements regarding the Children of Ilúvatar seem to have been considered as the province of the creator, at least as far as severe punishments were concerned.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andsigil View Post
I'd say they sentenced a lot of people on Numenor to death.
That was Ilúvatar, though, not the Valar. Illustrating my above point, the Valar did not think they had the authority to render a summary judgment and kill the Númenóreans outright, even though Ar-Pharazôn and his men were a direct threat to the Elves in Aman. Instead, they handed the matter over to the "father" of the Children. I see the Valar as being more "nannies" to the Children, and not having ultimate authority as "parents".
__________________
Music alone proves the existence of God.
Inziladun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2011, 03:20 AM   #11
Galadriel
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
 
Galadriel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: In Eldamar beside the walls of Elven Tirion
Posts: 551
Galadriel has just left Hobbiton.
I think, since banishing the Noldor led to their death, why should the Valar stop there?

Okay, forget that. What if Eru came and said, "Do what you want with him." Not that he'd actually say that, or he'd say it very differently, but what then?
__________________
"Hey! Come derry dol! Can you hear me singing?" – Tom Bombadil
Galadriel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2011, 09:46 AM   #12
Eomer of the Rohirrim
Auspicious Wraith
 
Eomer of the Rohirrim's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: The Netherlands
Posts: 4,988
Eomer of the Rohirrim is a guest at the Prancing Pony.Eomer of the Rohirrim is a guest at the Prancing Pony.
Shield

Quote:
Originally Posted by Galadriel View Post
I think, since banishing the Noldor led to their death, why should the Valar stop there?

Okay, forget that. What if Eru came and said, "Do what you want with him." Not that he'd actually say that, or he'd say it very differently, but what then?
Are you saying the Valar effectively killed those Noldor? That's going way too far, if you ask me!
__________________
Los Ingobernables de Harlond
Eomer of the Rohirrim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2011, 10:22 AM   #13
Morthoron
Curmudgeonly Wordwraith
 
Morthoron's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Ensconced in curmudgeonly pursuits
Posts: 2,359
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 Eomer of the Rohirrim View Post
Are you saying the Valar effectively killed those Noldor? That's going way too far, if you ask me!
Actually, if one was inclined to follow that proposition (ie, the Valar were responsible for the deaths of the Noldor due to their Ban), one might as well say the Valar were responsible for the Kinslaying as well, because it was the Valar who dragged the Noldor to Valinor in the first place. In either case, the concept is flawed, and does not take into account any free will or personal responsibility on the part of the Noldor.

If one follows the story, the Valar do not sentence anyone to death, not even Morgoth. Such punishment is always deferred to Eru, particularly in the case of the Children of Iluvatar. He who gives life is the one who can take it away.
__________________
Please visit my newly resurrected blog...The Dark Elf File...a slightly skewed journal of music and literary comment, fan-fiction and interminable essays.
Morthoron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2011, 04:36 PM   #14
Elmo
Pittodrie Poltergeist
 
Elmo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: trying to find that warm and winding lane again
Posts: 659
Elmo has just left Hobbiton.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andsigil View Post
I'd say they sentenced a lot of people on Numenor to death.
This, a lot of children included.

Also I think they separated Melkor's spirit from his body which is a definition of killing him isn't it?
__________________
As Beren looked into her eyes within the shadows of her hair,
The trembling starlight of the skies he saw there mirrored shimmering.
Elmo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2011, 04:58 PM   #15
Inziladun
Gruesome Spectre
 
Inziladun's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Heaven's doorstep
Posts: 7,558
Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elmo View Post
This, a lot of children included.

Also I think they separated Melkor's spirit from his body which is a definition of killing him isn't it?
Again, it wasn't the Valar who passed judgement on Númenor: they lacked the authority to do so.

Also, Melkor was forced into the Void, but it is not said that his consciousness was affected, and the Valar were not by nature corporal beings in the first place. I don't think you can infer that Melkor was "killed".

EDIT- Also had the thought that Melkor was not one of the Children, but was a peer of the Valar. Their bringing him to heel was much different than the prospect of their judging Elves, Men, or Dwarves.
__________________
Music alone proves the existence of God.

Last edited by Inziladun; 02-18-2011 at 05:14 PM.
Inziladun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2011, 07:46 PM   #16
Galadriel55
Blossom of Dwimordene
 
Galadriel55's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: The realm of forgotten words
Posts: 8,043
Galadriel55 is wading through snowdrifts on Redhorn.Galadriel55 is wading through snowdrifts on Redhorn.Galadriel55 is wading through snowdrifts on Redhorn.
The Valar didn't give life to the Children - so they can't take it away.

Zil - I agree with you completely on what you said about Morgoth.
__________________
"I have no great fondness for the universe, but I do live there." - Eliezer Yudkowsky
Galadriel55 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2011, 10:32 PM   #17
Galin
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 945
Galin has been trapped in the Barrow!
As an aside: I would say Morgoth was killed; he incarnated himself and had become wedded to his body it seems, and was ultimately judged and executed.

This is arguably more explicit in Morgoth's Ring (and/or possibly Osanwe Centa) than in the Silmarillion. What the MR text might also say about Manwe or Eru here I don't remember however, and I don't have Myths Transformed at hand at the moment!

Edit: here's the 'arguably more explicit' passage I was thinking of (found it on the net), but I know there's more in any case...


Quote:
'Morgoth was thus actually made captive in physical form, and in that form taken as a mere criminal to Aman and delivered to Namo Mandos as judge - and executioner. He was judged, and eventually taken out of the Blessed Realm and executed: that is killed like one of the Incarnates.'
Full context is best but again I can't lay my hands on MR at this time.

Last edited by Galin; 02-18-2011 at 10:45 PM.
Galin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2011, 11:08 PM   #18
Inziladun
Gruesome Spectre
 
Inziladun's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Heaven's doorstep
Posts: 7,558
Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Galin View Post
As an aside: I would say Morgoth was killed; he incarnated himself and had become wedded to his body it seems, and was ultimately judged and executed.
I don't have access to Morgoth's Ring, but the Silm text says:

Quote:
But Morgoth himself the Valar thrust through the Door of Night beyond the Walls of the World.....and a guard is set forever on those walls, and Eärendil keeps watch upon the ramparts of the sky.
If Morgoth was "dead", why the need to "guard" and "keep watch"?

I don't know which text was the preferred one from the Professor's point of view, but doesn't the Second Prophesy of Mandos refer to Melkor returning at the end as well?
__________________
Music alone proves the existence of God.
Inziladun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2011, 08:42 AM   #19
Galin
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 945
Galin has been trapped in the Barrow!
I would say that in Tolkien's world killing is the separation of body and spirit, rather than the reduction of spirit to nothing. Again I have to rely on quotations from the net (from Morgoth's Ring), but as far as Morgoth being physical...

Quote:
'To gain domination over Arda, Morgoth had let most of his being pass into the physical constituents of the Earth -- hence all things that were born on Earth and lived on and by it, beasts or plants or incarnate spirits, were liable to be 'stained'. Morgoth at the time of the War of the Jewels had become permanently 'incarnate': for this reason he was afraid, and waged the war almost entirely by means of devices, or of subordinates and dominated creatures.'
And in connection with a possible return...

Quote:
'(...) in seeking to absorb or rather to infiltrate himself throughout 'matter', what was then left of him was no longer powerful enough to reclothe itself. (It would now remain fixed in the desire to do so: there was no 'repentance' or possibility of it: Melkor had abandoned for ever all 'spiritual' ambitions, and existed almost solely as a desire to possess and dominate matter, and Arda in particular). At least it could not yet reclothe itself. We need not suppose that Manwe was deluded into supposing that this had been a war to end war, or even to end Melkor. Melkor was not Sauron. We speak of him being 'weakened, shrunken, reduced'; but this in comparison with the great Valar. He had been a being of immense potency and life. The Elves certainly held and taught that fear or 'spirits' may grow of their own life (independently of the body), even as they may be hurt and healed, be diminished and renewed.'*

'The dark spirit of Melkor's 'remainder' might be expected, therefore, eventually and after along ages to increase again, even (as some held) to draw back into itself some of its formerly dissipated power. It would do this (even though Sauron could not) because of its relative greatness. It did not repent, or turn finally away from its obsession, but retained still relics of wisdom, so that it could still seek its object indirectly, and not merely blindly. It would rest, seek to heal itself, distract itself by other thoughts and desires and devices -- but all simply to recover enough strength to return to the attack on the Valar, and to its old obsession. As it grew again it would become, as it were, a dark shadow, brooding on the confines of Arda, and yearning towards it.'


(marginal additon) 'If they do not sink below a cerain level. Since no fea can be annihilated, reduced to zero or not-existing, it is no[t] clear what is meant. Thus Sauron was said to have fallen below the point of ever recovering, though he had previously recovered. What is probably meant is that a 'wicked' spirit becomes fixed in a certain desire or ambition, and if it connot repent then this desire becomes virtually its whole being. But the desire may be wholly beyond the weakness it has fallen to, and it will then be unable to withdraw its attention from the unobtainable desire, even to attend to itself. It will then remain for ever in impotent desire or memory of desire.'
I'm pretty sure this is all from Myths Transformed, Morgoth's Ring. Possibly text VII?
Galin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2011, 09:33 AM   #20
Galadriel55
Blossom of Dwimordene
 
Galadriel55's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: The realm of forgotten words
Posts: 8,043
Galadriel55 is wading through snowdrifts on Redhorn.Galadriel55 is wading through snowdrifts on Redhorn.Galadriel55 is wading through snowdrifts on Redhorn.
The Valar didn't have to rip the body away from Morgoth. They couldn have just pushed him into the Void, and it is the Void, so nothing physical could be there. *Morgoth's body dissolves into emptiness*
__________________
"I have no great fondness for the universe, but I do live there." - Eliezer Yudkowsky
Galadriel55 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2011, 10:34 AM   #21
Galin
Ghost Prince of Cardolan
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 945
Galin has been trapped in the Barrow!
On the 'Void' and Morgoth's fate...

Quote:
'We read that he was then thrust out into the Void. That should mean that he was put outside Time and Space, outside Ea altogether; but if that were so this would imply a direct intervention of Eru (with or without supplication of the Valar). It may however refer inaccurately* to the extrusion or flight of his spirit from Arda. ...

*[footnote to the text] Since the minds of Men (and even of the Elves) were inclined to confuse the 'Void', as a conception of the state of Not-being, outside Creation or Ea, with the conception of vast spaces within Ea, especially those conceived to lie all about the enisled 'Kingdom of Arda' (which we should probably call the Solar System).'
JRRT from Morgoth's Ring.
Galin 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 12:03 AM.



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.