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Old 11-06-2004, 09:33 AM   #41
davem
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davem is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.davem is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.
Quick thought.

Quote:
The Lady bowed her head, & she turned then to Boromir, & to him she gave a belt of gold; & to Merry & Pippin she gave small silver belts, each with a clasp wrought like a golden flower.
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Belt: to award a belt, or to invest formally with one, as in conferring Knighthood; adjBelted:wearing a belt, eg of a knight. (Collins Dictionary)
Quote:
Belt. Belted A reference to the belt & spurs with which Knights were invested. (Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase & Fable)
Well, Boromir is already a ‘Knight’, & both Merry & Pippin will become ‘Knights’ in the course of their journeys.

Is this another example of Galadriel’s ability to see into the future?
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Old 11-06-2004, 09:55 AM   #42
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A brief additional off topic observation on Tolkien and Ireland:
It's curious how he seemed, whle liking Ireland as a country and its people,
not to be especially taken with its language or mythology. Two excerpts from "Letters":
Quote:
I do know Celtic things (many in their original languages Irish and Welsh), and feel for them a certain distaste: largely for their fundamental unreason. They have bright colour, but are like a broken stained glass window reassembled without design.
#19
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(I) find both Gaelic and the air of Ireland wholly alien- though the latter (not the language) is attractive.
# 165.
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Old 11-06-2004, 10:22 AM   #43
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Estelyn Telcontar is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.Estelyn Telcontar is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.
Thanks for that information, davem! That does put the presents which are underrated and least discussed in another light!
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Old 11-09-2004, 07:33 AM   #44
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Estelyn Telcontar is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.Estelyn Telcontar is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.
I have two footnotes to this chapter which came to my attention:

First of all, was Boromir's disdain of Faërie one of the causes of his downfall?
Quote:
But what I have heard seems to me for the most part old wives' tales, such as we tell to our children.
Celeborn, a personage of living legend for a Gondorian, reprimands him, and that seems to me to echo Tolkien's sentiments in his essay On Fairy Stories and his poem Mythopoeia, where he defends the value of fairy tales and myths, especially for adults.

The second thing I noted is Galadriel's selflessness; in promoting Aragorn's cause and his courtship of Arwen, she knows that she will lose her granddaughter eternally (or whatever is equivalent to that with the Elves). Perhaps this is noticeable especially in contrast to Movie-Elrond's attitude, although his book character is nowhere near to being that negative. This is a sacrifice that we cannot measure.
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Old 11-09-2004, 08:45 AM   #45
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Yes, davem, thank you muchly for the info re: belts and knighthood. Somewhere above (too lazy to look or link it) I argued that Galadriel, in her gift giving, seems to be far more about endings/Home than Celeborn, who is about the present/Road. Boromir, Pippin and Merry were rather tricky in my argument, as I had no idea how their gifts related to their endings. . .but now I do!

I also like how this ties Boromir/Pippin/Merry together ever more closely. I'm not sure that I would see Boromir as 'already a knight' however, but would strive instead to hold on to the idea (put forward by davem) that Boromir is on a journey of growth and maturation of his own. At this point in the book, I think we can see him as an untried knight: he's not really been useful or effective in a fight yet, his heart has been sorely tested by the Lady in the Castle Perilous, and he's been found a bit wanting. But when it comes time to lay down his life for Merry and Pippin, I think that he will show himself to be proper knight hood material.

Hmm. . .Pippin and Merry are made knights when they offer allegiance to Denethor and Theoden: perhaps Boromir does not fully grow into knighthood until he finally offers allegiance and love (and is given both in return) to Aragorn?? But that will have to wait for the appropriate chapter.
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Old 11-09-2004, 08:56 AM   #46
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I think that Gladriel's symbolic knighting of these three is incredibly moving - especially given the awkward, antagonistic, attitude of Boromir to Galadriel.

I did skim through Gawain & the Green Knight, & found that Gawain is given a green-gold belt by Bercilak's wife, which he is told will save his life in the coming confrontation with the Green Knight.

As both Boromir & Gawain are on a perilous journey ending in a confrontation with death (which Gawain survives & Boromir does not), I did wonder if Tolkien was using the Gawain myth in the Boromir story. I don't want to push it too far, but the hero's journey to a mysterious wood or castle, the encounter with the Lord & Lady of that place, & the giving of a symbolic/magical belt before the hero departs for his last battle seems perhaps a bit too coincidental.
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Old 11-11-2004, 10:26 PM   #47
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silver glass

The departure from Lorien echoes Frodo's dream and also forsees his sailing.

Dreaminess; grey, silver, light, glass, rain; water; distant green country; sweet singing over the water; and shining-- shining song, shining veil of rain, shining phial, shining lady.

And for those from whom the song is receeding-- grey silent grief, sinking into the darkness of night, with only the noise of the water against the shore.

(I've always wondered what a 'hythe' was and I finally looked it up: a small 'havens'.)

From Bombadil's house, second night:

Quote:
But either in his dreams or out of them, he could not tell which, Frodo heard a sweet singing running in his mind: a song that seemed to come like a pale light behind a grey rain-curtain, and growing stronger to turn the veil all to glass and silver, until at last it was rolled back, and a far green country opened before him under a swift sunrise.
*****

From Farewell to Lorien:

Quote:
Frodo took the phial, and for a moment as it shone between them, he saw her again standing like a queen, great and beautiful, but no longer terrible. He bowed, but found no words to say.

Now the Lady arose, and Celeborn led them back to the Hythe. A yellow noon lay on the green land of the Tongue, and the water glittered with silver. All at last was made ready. The company took their places in the boats as before. Crying farewell, the Elves of Lorien with long grey poles thrust them out into the flowing stream, and the rippling waters bore them slowly away. The travellers sat still without moving or speaking. On the green bank near to the very point of the tongue the Lady Galadriel stood alone and silent. As they passed her they turned and their eyes watched her slowly floating away from them. For so it seemed to them: Lorien was slipping backward, like a bright ship masted with enchanted trees, sailing on to forgotten shores, while they sat helpless upon the margin of the grey and leafless world.

... Soon the white form of the Lady was small and distant. She shone like a window of glass upon a far hill in the westering sun, or as a remote lake seen from a mountain: a crystal fallen in the lap of the land. Then it seemed to Frodo that she lifted her arms in a final farewell, and far but piercing-clear on the following wind came the sound of her voice singing. But now she sang in the ancient tongue of the elves beyond the sea... "...Farewell! Maybe thou shalt find Valimar. Maybe even thou shalt find it. Farewell!"

...all their eyes were filled with tears. ...The breeze died away and the river flowed without a sound. No voice of bird broke the silence... ...a grey and starless night. Far into the dark quiet hours they floated on... Frodo sat and listened to the faint lap and gurgle of the River ... until his head nodded and he fell into an uneasy sleep.
The long poles emphasize that once he chooses to enter the boat, Frodo is a passenger, dependant on the elves and the water.

*****
From The Grey Havens:

Quote:
Galadriel sat upon a white palfrey and was robed all in glimmering white, like clouds about the moon; for she herself seemed to shine with a soft light. On her finger was Nenya, the ring wrought of Mithril, that bore a single white stone flickering like a frosty star.

.....

The sails were drawn up, and the wind blew, and slowly the ship slipped away down the long grey firth; and the light of the glass of Galadriel that Frodo bore glimmered and was lost. And the ship went out into the High Sea and passed on into the west, until at last on a night of rain Frodo smelled a sweet fragrance on the air and heard the sound of singing that came over the water. And then it seemed to him that as in his dream in the house of Bombadil, the grey rain-curtaiin turned all to silver glass and was rolled back, and he beheld white shores and beyond them a far green country under a swift sunrise.

But to Sam the evening deepened to darkness as he stood at the Haven; and as he looked at the grey sea he saw only a shadow on the waters that was soon lost in the West. There still he stood far into the night, hearing only the sigh and murmur of the waves on the shores of Middle-earth, and the sound of them sank deep into his heart. Beside him stood Merry and Pippin, and they were silent.

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Old 08-27-2018, 05:15 PM   #48
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A short chapter, but a weighty one! (And till this resurrection, the most-buried thread in the sub-forum.)

The farewell with Galadriel and Celeborn, especially Galadriel singing of Valinor as the Fellowship floats away, ends my reading experience of Lothlórien much as it began: with a heightened spiritual experience missing from the movies (either because Jackson et al coudln't show such a thing or desired not to). And the experience of Cerin Amroth certainly mirrors the song of Valinor in a sense: both deal with the Elvish longing for what was.

To visit Cerin Amroth, which seems like the purest place of Lothlórien's power, is to step into the Elder Days, which still ARE at the beginning of the Lórien trilogy, but Galadriel's lament is a lament that they have passed. Similarly, Cerin Amroth, the heart of Elvendom on earth, might also be said to be the Heart of Elvendom on Middle-earth--no one would rightly say it is more blessed than Valinor, but if it is a place where the Elder Days are still present, then it is a place that speaks of Elven realms outside Valinor: of the Teleri refusing the Great March and becoming the Silvan Elves, of the Noldor returning to Middle-earth and carving great realms for themselves under the Sun, of the Sindar moving East after the First Age and seeking to find new Menegroths and Doriaths. To lose Cerin Amroth is to lose the First Age.

And what is balanced between Cerin Amroth and the lament in the text? "I will diminish and go into the West and remain Galadriel." Already, when Frodo meets Galadriel again: "already she seemed to him, as by men of later days Elves still at times are seen: present and yet remote, a living vision of that which had already been left behind by the flowing streams of Time." The stated goal of the makers of the Three had been precisely to hold back the flowing streams of Time, and though the power of Nenya has not yet been broken with the destruction of the One, once Galadriel passes the temptation and commits herself to assisting its destruction, it immediately begins.

This image of Valinor as a consolation prize for those who have lost Middle-earth is vastly melancholic, and it's a bit at odds with the way the Silmarillion presents it. There it is a place of light and glory and, once Fëanor leads away the Ñoldor, it is a place to look back at in longing. And something might be said regarding the longing--and envy--of the Númenóreans in the Akallabêth.

Also, a side note, to go back to an ancient discussion of the fitfulness of the gifts, Fordhim linked four of the gifts to the eventual endings of the characters, and was then pleased to add Boromir, Merry, and Pippin to that analysis--but what of Legolas? Could it be, in keeping with the changing, lost nature of Lothlórien, that Galadriel doesn't give him a gift for his ending in the wistful hope of staving on his inevitable (Elven) end with a gift mired in the here-and-now?
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Old 09-09-2018, 08:28 AM   #49
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Regarding the relationship between Galadriel and Celeborn. Celeborn tells them to avoid Fangorn, and Boromir says it seems to him to be "old wives' tales, such as we tell to our children."

Quote:
"Then I need say no more," said Celeborn. "But do not despise the lore that has come down from distant years; for oft it may chance that old wives keep in memory word of things that once were needful for the wise to know."
I just find this quote interesting in the discussion of Celeborn being focused on providing needed gifts for the Fellowship's present tasks (most noticeable in the boats. Did Celeborn also give the cloaks?) and Galadriel's gifts are given with the future and their end fate. Celeborn's warning to avoid Fangorn is giving counsel on their most immediate decision, do they leave the river on the east or west? It makes me wonder if Celeborn is making a statement about Galadriel's role as an "old wife", who keeps in "memory word of things that once were needful for the wise [Celeborn] to know."

Speaking of Fangorn, in his response about he would go through Fangorn to get back to Minas Tirith if he had to...it just shows Boromir is the character most clearly uncomfortable around elves. He was refusing to go through Lothlorien unless the entire company was against him, but when advised to avoid Fangorn, he said he would find a way through Fangorn if need be (because no elves in Fangorn ). Did anyone think the story would lead us through Fangorn?

Friendships are beginning to solidify in (and departing) Lorien. Most noticeably between Legolas and Gimli, and those two have left changed. But this is also the first time Boromir is connected to Merry and Pippin (by receiving belts) and upon departing they're in a boat together. Aragorn's with Frodo and Sam, but he's the one with the hardest decision ahead...to follow Frodo or go to Minas Tirith with Boromir.

And a final quick point...I was critical of Jackson for portraying lembas as this delicious elf cake treat, but color me surprised when the Elves have a laugh at Gimli eating too much of the delicious honey cake.
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