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Old 12-02-2012, 12:08 PM   #1
Pervinca Took
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Which Vala tripped Gollum?

No definitive answer perhaps, but what is your personal guess?

Which Vala do you think caused Gollum to teeter on the edge of the Sammath Naur?

Eru himself would have commanded it, perhaps, but to whom might he have delegated the task? And how many of the Valar were watching, and how many of them exerted their powers in those final minutes? Who put it into Frodo and Sam's minds, as they rested on the slopes of Orodruin, that they must get up and push on to the Cracks of Doom, before it was too late.

My guess would be Manwe, perhaps (regarding Gollum's sudden loss of balance). Ulmo seems to intervene more than most in the fates of the peoples of Middle-earth, but I'd find it difficult to imagine him keeping watch around a parched, waterless land. Unless he had taken it upon himself to watch from the Sea of Nurnen.

Et vous?
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Old 12-02-2012, 05:44 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Pervinca Took View Post
No definitive answer perhaps, but what is your personal guess?

Which Vala do you think caused Gollum to teeter on the edge of the Sammath Naur?

Eru himself would have commanded it, perhaps, but to whom might he have delegated the task? And how many of the Valar were watching, and how many of them exerted their powers in those final minutes? Who put it into Frodo and Sam's minds, as they rested on the slopes of Orodruin, that they must get up and push on to the Cracks of Doom, before it was too late.

My guess would be Manwe, perhaps (regarding Gollum's sudden loss of balance). Ulmo seems to intervene more than most in the fates of the peoples of Middle-earth, but I'd find it difficult to imagine him keeping watch around a parched, waterless land. Unless he had taken it upon himself to watch from the Sea of Nurnen.

Et vous?
How do you know any of them did? I mean, couldn't Gollum just have tripped and fell?
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Old 12-02-2012, 06:36 PM   #3
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I'm with Nerwen on this one. Fate steered Gollum's feet, just like Fate steered Bilbo's hands in the dark under the Misty Mountains. The event had already been played out in the great music of the Ainur before time, and like the rest of the world and everything in it, was merely the physically manifested playback of their music.
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Old 12-02-2012, 06:54 PM   #4
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I don't know about that. Aule was famous for leaving tools lying around his workspace, and Sauron learned much from him. That might be a stretch, but that's as close as you're going to get without Tolkien verifying it in one of the histories.
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Old 12-03-2012, 11:22 AM   #5
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I think Gollum tripped himself. Oh, but then that would make Gollum a Vala. Hmmm......
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Old 09-29-2013, 07:25 PM   #6
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I think Manwe. If there was water around I would have definitely gone with Ulmo!
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Old 09-29-2013, 09:10 PM   #7
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I think that going in so "mathimatical-theorem-y"* into this topic (and other similar topics) just ruins the mystery and the trust-in-fate feel. Not that I am against this speculation, but I am avoiding thinking too deeply about this question. I want to leave it as something mythical and mysterious.

*Not that I have anything against math or theorems either, just, you know...
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Old 09-29-2013, 10:50 PM   #8
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In a corny sort of way, I like to think that there was no involvement on behalf of the Valar, especially considering Gollum's trip over the edge in Sammath Naur.

I think that in some aspects Tolkien wanted to believe that bad things would come to bad people. In the Middle Earth universe, it can be argued that everything is very simple. Good people are good, bad people are bad, some people can change, and every once in a while there's a grey area.
I also believe he had this mindset because he always thought so fondly of the idea of Goodness, and it permeated his work. Frodo was the only one who could carry the ring because he was so good that he was not easily corrupted. Or at least, he was supposed to represent all that was good, as any soldier going to war for the right reasons.
Also, I believe it was a coping mechanism. It's easier to believe that good conquers all, even when all hope is lost, as it was in Sammath Naur when Gollum had the ring.

I suppose it could also be in the Music of the Ainur, as it did redound in the splendor of Eru's greater plan. I just like to think, and I think Tolkien, too, thought, that sometimes Good happens in this world.
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Old 09-30-2013, 05:20 AM   #9
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Just had a thought. I think all the opinions fall into one of the two groups - Gollum's fall is just a fall and Gollum's fall is caused by fate. But who controls that fate? It sure could be a Vala(r) or Eru, but do you think that fate it such a thing that it lies even above them, or at least independent from them?
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Old 09-30-2013, 06:13 AM   #10
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Just had a thought. I think all the opinions fall into one of the two groups - Gollum's fall is just a fall and Gollum's fall is caused by fate. But who controls that fate? It sure could be a Vala(r) or Eru, but do you think that fate it such a thing that it lies even above them, or at least independent from them?
Regarding this, whereas Fate is a recurring theme, let's not also forget that the history of Middle-Earth, resp. Arda was in many ways still capable of "transcending" or overcoming fate. It is hard to say what exactly Tolkien meant by fate, whether that was supposed to be the "laws of the world set by the Music of the Ainur", or something else. However, in Ainulindalë, one of the crucial points on this topic says that
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the Ainur know much of what was, and is, and is to come, and few things are unseen by them. Yet some things there are that they cannot see, neither alone nor taking counsel together; for to none but himself has Ilúvatar revealed all that he has in store, and in every age there come forth things that are new and have no foretelling, for they do not proceed from the past.
So that makes is clear that "fate" is something, in my opinion, that is above Valar or at the same level with Valar (somehow, Vairë and Mandos come to my mind in relation with this), but Eru is still above fate, that's for sure.

Even though - and now I'm getting from a slightly different direction back to the original topic of this thread - actually I would say Gollum's slipping falls into this cathegory of "things that have no foretelling". Because by simple laws of causality, one would have expected Gollum to claim the Ring and walk away happily, where some Nazgul would fall on him, take him to Sauron and Sauron would rule Middle-Earth. Therefore, in fact, if asked which of the Valar caused the slip, I would say neither, since it is exactly "outside the realm of generally expected possibilities", which would imply Eru, and no other mediator involved. But personally, I am with G55 and others who prefer to have the "unanswered question". It simply happened, and that's how I believe it is supposed to be perceived. Seeking an agent behind all this is unnecessary, and maybe even misleading.
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:02 AM   #11
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I would agree that I don't believe Gollum's fall was the action of any Vala. The will of Eru was, perhaps, responsible, but in a deeply abstract and complex way - not as if Eru (or indeed one of the Powers) exerted some "telekinetic force" to push him in.
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Old 09-30-2013, 12:40 PM   #12
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I think Gollum tripped himself. Oh, but then that would make Gollum a Vala. Hmmm......
Actually, I used to wonder if Gollum hadn't in fact committed suicide by deliberately stepping close to the brink of the chasm and looking away. I rejected that when I read in HOME that Tolkien had considered that idea and decided against it. Still, maybe Gollum didn't make himself fall, but at the same time didn't care if he did. He could die with the Precious and save Frodo at the same time if it happened. And then Fate was free to finish things...
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Old 09-30-2013, 07:08 PM   #13
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Actually, I used to wonder if Gollum hadn't in fact committed suicide by deliberately stepping close to the brink of the chasm and looking away. I rejected that when I read in HOME that Tolkien had considered that idea and decided against it. Still, maybe Gollum didn't make himself fall, but at the same time didn't care if he did. He could die with the Precious and save Frodo at the same time if it happened. And then Fate was free to finish things...
I believe that this idea is closest to the most probably truth, at least from the perspective of Gollum. He surely had no intentions of dying, but it wasn't a terrible end as long as he had the Ring. The carelessness of his misstep really brings foreshadowed elements together, such as:

As spoken by Eru in The Simarillion:
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These too in their time shall find that all that they do redounds at the end only to the glory of my work.

And, arguebly, just as importantly, Gandalf tells to Frodo in The Fellowship of the Ring:
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For even the very wise cannot see all ends. I have not much hope that Gollum can be cured before he dies, but there is a chance of it. And he is bound up with the fate of the Ring. My heart tells me that he has some part to play yet, for good or ill, before the end; and when that comes, the pity of Bilbo may rule the fate of many – yours not least.

Just to name a poignant two.
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Old 09-30-2013, 07:21 PM   #14
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It seems, that very moment was the time when little folk was in charge and great powers (warriors, kings, wizards, elves, wraiths, Sauron and even Valar) could just stand and watch. Of cause it was in the Music but I wouldn't describe it as Eru's intervention.

Gollum dancing on the edge shows us that his soul was not completely subjugated by The Ring as he still was able and free to do such a foolish thing! Imagine Sauron sitting there and saying: "What the hell you are doing! Stop it!!!".

But what made Gollum to fall? His fate? His fate was bound to The Ring. And I tend to think (Copiright ) that it was The Ring that made him to fall. Sauron put his malice into The Ring; he made it capable of bewitching and destroying whoever bore it. What he didn't expect, as it seems to me, is that The Ring's final "intention" was not only to return to its Master but to destroy him in the end - because self-destruction is inherent to evil as the example of Melkor shows. Dancing Gollum provided an excellent shortcut to destruction of Sauron and three others who used to bare The Ring, so The One didn't miss the chance. But it was neither a mere chance nor Eru-From-Machine.
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Old 09-30-2013, 07:41 PM   #15
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What he didn't expect, as it seems to me, is that The Ring's final "intention" was not only to return to its Master but to destroy him in the end - because self-destruction is inherent to evil as the example of Melkor shows. Dancing Gollum provided an excellent shortcut to destruction of Sauron
Wow, that is a truly profound idea. I never thought about it that way, but it does seem like a very likely thing that Tolkien would have conjured in his own mind. What a great thought.
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:10 PM   #16
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What he didn't expect, as it seems to me, is that The Ring's final "intention" was not only to return to its Master but to destroy him in the end - because self-destruction is inherent to evil as the example of Melkor shows. Dancing Gollum provided an excellent shortcut to destruction of Sauron and three others who used to bare The Ring, so The One didn't miss the chance. But it was neither a mere chance nor Eru-From-Machine.
If you're going to make that leap though, you might as well say that Sauron's impetus for diffusing his power into an inanimate object was also willfully self-destructive. That, because the "will" of the Ring was in effect Sauron's own essence. Evil may destroy itself in the end; in fact Tolkien's Middle-earth seems rife with examples of that. That doesn't mean though that evil desires its own end. Quite the opposite: Ungoliant, Saruman, and Shelob cling to whatever life is there for them. Sauron too rebuilds himself each time his physical body is "killed", a little weaker and bound to the world with every reincarnation. That doesn't stop his desire to live in the world, though.
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Old 10-01-2013, 01:08 AM   #17
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Narya The Ring

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"Then suddenly, as before under the eaves of the Emyn Muil, Sam saw these two rivals with other vision. A crouching shape, scarcely more than the shadow of a living thing, a creature now wholly ruined and defeated, yet filled with a hideous lust and rage; and before it stood stern, untouchable by pity, a figure robed in white, but at its breast it held a wheel of fire. Out of the fire there spoke a commanding voice.

'Begone, and trouble me no more! If you touch me ever again, you shall be cast yourself into the Fire of Doom.'"
See Did the Ring speak on Mount Doom?, an article on an obscure Tolkien web site.

As I've stated before, before many physical battles, there is an exchange of prophecy that often foreshadows the result of the conflict. Examples...

Quote:
"By Elbereth and Luthien the Fair, you shall have neither the Ring nor me!"
Quote:
"You shall not pass!"
Then there is my favorite example, a non-mage speaking Words of Power.

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"Begone, foul dwimmerlaik, lord of carrion! Leave the dead in peace!"

A cold voice answered: "Come not between the Nazgûl and his prey! Or he will not slay thee in thy turn. He will bear thee away to the houses of lamentation, beyond all darkness, where thy flesh shall be devoured, and thy shrivelled mind be left naked to the Lidless Eye."

A sword rang as it was drawn. "Do what you will; but I will hinder it if I may."

"Hinder me? Thou fool. No living man may hinder me!"

Then Merry heard of all sounds in that hour the strangest. It seemed that Dernhelm laughed and the clear voice was like the ring of steel. "But no living man am I! You look upon a woman. Éowyn I am, Éomund's daughter. You stand between me and my lord and kin. Begone, if you be not deathless! For living or dark undead, I will smite you if you touch him."
Then there is the one where you have to remember that in Gondor, the first hour of the day begins with sunrise. Here again the Lord of Nazgul is slain with Words.

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"You cannot enter here," said Gandalf, and the huge shadow halted. "Go back to the abyss prepared for you! Go back! Fall into the nothingness that awaits you and your Master. Go!"

The Black Rider flung back his hood, and behold! he had a kingly crown; and yet upon no head visible was it set. The red fires shone between it and the mantled shoulders vast and dark. From a mouth unseen there came a deadly laughter.

"Old fool!" he said. "Old fool! This is my hour. Do you not know Death when you see it? Die now and curse in vain!" And with that he lifted high his sword and flames ran down the blade.

And in that very moment, away behind in some courtyard of the city, a cock crowed. Shrill and clear he crowed, recking nothing of war nor of wizardry, welcoming only the morning that in the sky far above the shadows of death was coming with the dawn.

And as if in answer there came from far away another note. Horns, horns, horns, in dark Mindolluin's sides they dimly echoed. Great horns of the north wildly blowing. Rohan had come at last.
In Middle Earth, Words have Power. A good deal of the subtle or not so subtle magic comes from the Words exchanged before conflict, in shaping the result before the conflict begins. In the last above example, the Witch King had to kill Gandalf "now" or his master would fall into nothingness. Gandalf wasn't just defending the gate. He was swinging for a home run. The moment the Witch King turned from the gate, when he left Gandalf unslain, his master was doomed.

To me, "If you touch me ever again, you shall be cast yourself into the Fire of Doom" is a prophecy, warning and command given by the Ring itself, in the spirt of it's creator, Sauron. It is to me significant that while all the free peoples from Gandalf to Bilbo to Frodo to the Elves of Mirkwood, to Faramir to even Sam, all showed Gollum mercy, the Ring, a proxy for Sauron, did not.

Now, it could be that this was influenced by Eru or one of the Valar as well, but to me it seems that evil destroyed evil. The Ring destroyed itself as a result of its own destructive malice. That is a major theme of the work from my perspective. To me, the Valar having to intervene at that moment would reduce the sense of wonder.
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Old 10-01-2013, 03:41 AM   #18
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To me, "If you touch me ever again, you shall be cast yourself into the Fire of Doom" is a prophecy, warning and command given by the Ring itself, in the spirt of it's creator, Sauron. It is to me significant that while all the free peoples from Gandalf to Bilbo to Frodo to the Elves of Mirkwood, to Faramir to even Sam, all showed Gollum mercy, the Ring, a proxy for Sauron, did not.
I've often considered this curse to perhaps be partly the Ring and partly Frodo speaking. I can't believe I forgot this, but actually one of the most convincing theories I've heard on this subject (although I can't recall where) was that Gollum fell because the Ring was still obeying the curse - because, despite the digit being severed, it was still on Frodo's finger (although he was, of course, not actually wearing it when the curse was uttered).

I any event I do like the theory that the Ring accidentally destroyed itself.
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Old 10-03-2013, 01:55 AM   #19
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I definitely class Gollum's death as one of those events that are both foreshadowed (by the author) and also foretold (by a character). In this case it's also a curse, as Zigûr describes. I also very much like the idea that it is a combination of Frodo and the Ring speaking. Sure, the Ring can't speak for itself, but it can possess a Bearer to some extent, especially if they are weakened. The Ring has, in some way, it's own will. Just as Frodo and Sam sometimes feel like they might just lay down and die rather than complete the Quest, perhaps the Ring too sometimes craves oblivion nearly as much as it craves reunion with its Master. In a similar way, one can imagine Gollum sensing on a subconscious level that once he has regained the Ring there is no way he can remain the Bearer unless he denies everyone else the chance to take it...

In any case, the idea of the Ring cursing Gollum and thus inadvertently ensuring its own destruction is quite deliciously ironic.
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Old 10-03-2013, 09:51 AM   #20
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The Ring has, in some way, it's own will. Just as Frodo and Sam sometimes feel like they might just lay down and die rather than complete the Quest, perhaps the Ring too sometimes craves oblivion nearly as much as it craves reunion with its Master.
I still doubt that the Ring intended its own destruction. Think of how much pressure it was exerting on Frodo at Mt. Doom to prevent him from throwing it into the Fire. And it succeeded. I think the "will" of the Ring was to stall Frodo until Sauron could come in person and deal with the pretender. It was Gollum who was the wild card, playing the unforeseen part Gandalf had intuited.
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Old 10-07-2013, 01:34 AM   #21
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Narya Be careful when speaking before a conflict...

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I still doubt that the Ring intended its own destruction. Think of how much pressure it was exerting on Frodo at Mt. Doom to prevent him from throwing it into the Fire. And it succeeded. I think the "will" of the Ring was to stall Frodo until Sauron could come in person and deal with the pretender. It was Gollum who was the wild card, playing the unforeseen part Gandalf had intuited.
I don't think that when the Witch King claimed, "This is my hour," that he was thinking of a cock crowing. That was the furthest thought in his mind. I don't think when he claimed "No mortal man may hinder me!" he saw Eowyn as a woman. Nor do I think all the implications of the curse "If you touch me ever again, you shall be cast yourself into the Fire of Doom" were well thought through when the curse was uttered. This would be true whether it was the Ring that was behind the curse, Frodo, or some combination of the two. In hindsight, the wording of all three curses were flawed.

In many of the exchanges of curses / prophecies that precede physical conflicts, it seems that the bad guy slips up the wording, leaving a critical loophole which the good guys, intentionally or not, end up exploiting.

It's common to encounter something similar in role playing. I played in a Middle Earth role playing game a while back. Both myself and the game master were aware of the notion of prophecies spoken before battle in Middle Earth. I was always fearful of invoking such word magic for fear I'd mess up the phrasing. Game masters are notorious for granting the letter of a wish, curse or prophecy while perverting the spirit. It seems Tolkien wrote in a similar spirit.

I also wasn't sure my character had enough Fea to speak a binding prophecy / curse / wish in her game world. Can any individual in Middle Earth, before a conflict, speak Words of Power? Or are only the Great speaking at the height of a major point of history granted the privilege?

I can't see Frodo speaking Words of Power in order to get away from some farmer without losing any purloined mushrooms. None of the conflicts my player character was involved with were on the scale of events encountered by the Fellowship of the Ring. It generally didn't feel right for Aerlinn to stand tall and issue orders to the various Servants of the Enemy she encountered. Thus, she didn't.

But she and I were aware that the possibility of speaking such Words was there.
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Old 10-07-2013, 05:22 AM   #22
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Why woudn't someone be able to speak Words of Power (by which I assume you mean curse or prophecy)? They clearly were able to do that, so why do you say they can't?

People with Elvish and/or Numenorian blood have foresight, and they can predict some things. Those would not be "official" prophecies, but prophecies nonetheless. People with innate power have uttered curses and they came true; once again, some curses were "official" (see Isildur) and some were similar to prophecies.


I agree with what Inzil said and with your first response to him, but I just don't understand your second point there.
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Old 10-07-2013, 09:02 AM   #23
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Limits?

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Originally Posted by Galadriel55 View Post
Why wouldn't someone be able to speak Words of Power (by which I assume you mean curse or prophecy)? They clearly were able to do that, so why do you say they can't?

People with Elvish and/or Numenorian blood have foresight, and they can predict some things. Those would not be "official" prophecies, but prophecies nonetheless. People with innate power have uttered curses and they came true; once again, some curses were "official" (see Isildur) and some were similar to prophecies.


I agree with what Inzil said and with your first response to him, but I just don't understand your second point there.
It's just based on examples in the book. In my large post above, note the prophecies made just before conflict involved major characters just before critical conflicts. The speakers were Gandalf, the Witch King, Frodo, and Eowyn. The conflicts were critical to the history of Middle Earth.

You mention elven / Numenorian foresight. The primary examples in LoTR are Aragorn's warning to Gandalf about entering Moria, Aragorn warning the forces of Saruman at Helm's Deep, and Aragorn telling Eomer they would draw swords together again, though all the power of Mordor would separate them.

What I don't recall seeing is relatively minor characters at not particularly important times attempting to foretell victory. In a role playing environment, the power of prophecy would be ever so abusable if anyone at any time as often as he liked could yell "I'm going to kill you" every time he draws his sword. Magic ought not to be that quick and easy. Thus, you don't see Merry, Pippin, Legolas, Gimli or Boromir making little speeches before they turn from one orc to the next.

Which is a good part of why I was reluctant to have Aerlinn in a role playing game cursing / prophesying before every fight scene. If I were writing fan fiction, I would also use prophecy / cursing / wishing in moderation.

I also find that curses, prophecies and wishes are very much akin. I'd like to think Aragorn's warning to Gandalf regarding Moria was a prophecy rather than a curse or a wish, but if a player character did something similar in a game, as a game master I would likely end up using the same game mechanics regardless.

But this is all subjective opinion. I think Words matter in Middle Earth. I just don't think they are or should be used lightly, casually or often. If prophesying makes things so, Gandalf would have given everyone a lecture on Prophesying 101 before setting out from Rivendell. Clearly, a wizard or a heir of Númenor would be better than most at using words, but they don't totally monopolize the ability.
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Old 10-07-2013, 06:09 PM   #24
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What I don't recall seeing is relatively minor characters at not particularly important times attempting to foretell victory.
There is a good point glossed over here.

In fantasy stories almost all foretelling comes true, at least in a sense, though it may be a point in the story that it does not come true as originally understood. But in real life prophecies, even when issued by a top financial wizard or a top political columnist, or one of National Enquirer’s ten top prophets, never come true, or don’t come true more often than expected by non-believers.

I recall some years ago in The Globe & Mail, Toronto’s chief financial newspaper, they set up a feature to encourage investment by showing how easily one could make money in this way. The writer made fake investments using non-existent money, to demonstrate how one could make one’s fake portfolio grow in value. The feature was stopped when the writer had lost sufficient fake funds to destroy his credibility.

Readers of fantasy books like to believe, or perhaps better like to pretend, that the words spoken on one’s deathbed will invariably come true. But they mostly know in fact that such words have no more likelihood of coming to pass than words spoken at any other time in the speaker’s life.

How did Saruman become such a bad prophet compared to Gandalf? Because in fantasy worlds being a bad person also makes one a bad prophet.

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Old 10-07-2013, 07:51 PM   #25
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It's just based on examples in the book. In my large post above, note the prophecies made just before conflict involved major characters just before critical conflicts. The speakers were Gandalf, the Witch King, Frodo, and Eowyn. The conflicts were critical to the history of Middle Earth.
The thing is, if it's not something major, what's the point of a prophecy? Actually, let me rephrase that. I don't like the word prophecy because it seems limiting to "official" declarations, like Malbeth's famous prophecies. I prefer the word foretellings, because often the prediction is mingled with personal feelings and the "seer" is unaware of making a prophecy. So, once again, if I say, "I have a feeling I will write a post in about ten seconds", and then write a post in ten seconds, that's not something you'd call a prophecy. Even if I wasn't talking about myself.

Many foretellings are invoked by the expectations or consequences of a major event, but I think that this is due to the fact that foresight comes to people with a strong innate spirit (wondering, is there any exception to this?) which is something that strengthens during a big conflict. Also, these are the kind of people that would become heroes in that conflict.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blantyr
You mention elven / Numenorian foresight. The primary examples in LoTR are Aragorn's warning to Gandalf about entering Moria, Aragorn warning the forces of Saruman at Helm's Deep, and Aragorn telling Eomer they would draw swords together again, though all the power of Mordor would separate them.
That's true, but I meant more the general references to "Numenorian/Elvish blood". Being born to one of the higher houses gives you the strong willpower that also characterizes the said houses. The ability to foretell things seems to increase with the "purity of bloodlines", so to speak. Which is not to say that only Elves/Numenorians can do it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blantyr
What I don't recall seeing is relatively minor characters at not particularly important times attempting to foretell victory. In a role playing environment, the power of prophecy would be ever so abusable if anyone at any time as often as he liked could yell "I'm going to kill you" every time he draws his sword. Magic ought not to be that quick and easy. Thus, you don't see Merry, Pippin, Legolas, Gimli or Boromir making little speeches before they turn from one orc to the next.
I would disagree on the basis that you're saying it's the speaker that causes the magic of foresight/curse/prophesy. I think that foresight is a power, not a weapon. You can't decide to use it when you think you need it. It doesn't work that way. It's not the same as Gandalf's Word of Command. You don't call on it, it calls on you.

As for foretelling victory, why, you can't do it unless there's a conflict, otherwise there would be no one to be victor over! But here are some examples of foretelling without relating to a battle conflict or the major conflict at the given moment:

Quote:
But foresight came upon Felagund as she spoke, and he said: "An oath I too shall swear, and must be free to fulfil it, and go into darkness. Nor shall anything of my realm endure that a son should inherit." ~Of the Noldor in Beleriand, The Sil
Quote:
Melian said nothing to him at that time, but afterwards she said to Galadriel: "Now the world runs swiftly to great tidings. And one of Men, even of Beor's house, shall indeed come, and the Girdle of Melian shall not restrain him, for doom greater than my power shall send him..." ~Of the Coming of Men Into the West, The Sil
Quote:
The Turin looked out westward, and he saw far off the great height of Amon Rudh; and unwitting of what lay before him he answered: "You have said, seek me in Dimbar. But I say, seek me on Amon Rudh!" ~Of Turin Turambar, The Sil
Quote:
Originally Posted by blantyr
I also find that curses, prophecies and wishes are very much akin. I'd like to think Aragorn's warning to Gandalf regarding Moria was a prophecy rather than a curse or a wish, ...
I prefer to think of it as a bad feeling, which, in essence, is foresight. So I suppose we're approaching the same idea from different ends here. I think that many times people do not realize that they are foretelling an event when they say something, since the foretelling or sursing has a lot to do with wishing it to be that way or feeling that way about it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bantyr
But this is all subjective opinion. I think Words matter in Middle Earth. I just don't think they are or should be used lightly, casually or often. If prophesying makes things so, Gandalf would have given everyone a lecture on Prophesying 101 before setting out from Rivendell. Clearly, a wizard or a heir of Númenor would be better than most at using words, but they don't totally monopolize the ability.
Once again, I'm the last person to deny the power of Words, especially in ME. But it's not people who master their power (in the sense of foresight/prophecy/curse), but the words that sometimes come to the people. So Gandalf couldn't have possibly given a lecture on it. Nor could they possibly be used lightly and often.
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Last edited by Galadriel55; 10-07-2013 at 08:43 PM. Reason: Fixed quote and typos
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