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Old 07-23-2021, 02:26 AM   #8
Legate of Amon Lanc
A Voice That Gainsayeth
 
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Legate of Amon Lanc is spying on the Black Gate.Legate of Amon Lanc is spying on the Black Gate.Legate of Amon Lanc is spying on the Black Gate.Legate of Amon Lanc is spying on the Black Gate.Legate of Amon Lanc is spying on the Black Gate.Legate of Amon Lanc is spying on the Black Gate.
Quote:
Originally Posted by littlemanpoet View Post
I have read an article somewhere (Mythlore magazine, or a book?) in which it was speculated that the Great Kitchen and its Master Cook stood in for the Church and its Priest. I don't think I agree, because many villages and towns in real life, like Wootton Major in this story, have some aspect that is expanded and elaborated.
Generally agreed that it sounds like one of the generic speculations that sometimes come up, along the lines of "it has four legs, therefore it has to be a dog". However I must say that there is one interesting aspect that makes me wonder whether it may not be at least partly on the right track. In the story, there is the somewhat peculiar description of the Hall once Alf had subtly influenced it to be renewed to the old style, with gargoyles and other decorative elements.

This is first obviously meant to be "a cultural influence of Faery" and perhaps a sort of metaphore for "restoring the old and forgotten, the mythology to its right place", but still, can it be more? Can it be, in broad terms, somehow connected to Tolkien's love for the "old-fashioned look" of churches, perhaps even in the forms of liturgy and so on? (Is anybody aware of Tolkien's view of older forms of Roman Catholic mass as opposed to more modern ones? However I am not aware of there being any "modern" or, contrarily, "restoration" movements at least as far as liturgy is concerned around that time yet, that would fall only towards 1960s and the Second Vatican Council, but perhaps someone specifically well-versed in Roman Catholic history would know whether there had been some minor attempts at changes already back when the Smith was written).
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"Should the story say 'he ate bread,' the dramatic producer can only show 'a piece of bread' according to his taste or fancy, but the hearer of the story will think of bread in general and picture it in some form of his own." -On Fairy-Stories
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