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Old 09-22-2021, 03:31 AM   #1
Huinesoron
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Silmaril Tolkien's final First Age timeline

Tolkien didn't have a final First Age timeline. Or rather, he had several: the Annals of Aman and associated Tale of Years (HoME X: Morgoth's Ring) seem to be his latest thoughts on the period before the Awakening of the Elves and the period after their arrival in Aman, but with the publication of The Nature of Middle-earth, we now have his later thoughts on the Great March (NoME 1.VII "The March of the Quendi"), and his even later thoughts on the period between the Awakening and the March (NoME 1.XIII "Key Dates", text 1). Throw in a smattering of later notes, such as a birthdate for Galadriel (NoME 1.XVIII "Elvish Ages & Numenorean") and a mention of the March crossing Caradhras (NoME 3.XVII "Silvan Elves & Silvan Elvish"), and what we have is a complex picture that Tolkien never put together.

But the pieces are there. It's taken a lot of calculating, cross-referencing, and tearing my hair out over Tolkien's entirely unreasonable habit of, um, not taking his 1960s thoughts into account in the 1950s (that monster), but I've pulled together what I think is a fair rendering of what Tolkien's "Final Timeline" would have looked like.*

The First Age of Middle-earth

*It wouldn't have. If he'd written it, he would have come up with a whole new set of dates, added several characters, and accidentally made Finwe the son of Maglor somehow. But I can dream.

I've not bothered to include the Beleriand years, because there's no change to them: they span about 600 years at the end of the very long First Age, just as they always have.

Notes on what in the world I was thinking at every stage are at the end, along with the parts where my common sense got the better of me. I'm happy to explain, discuss, or defend any points people want to pull out, though if it involves too much of Tolkien's inability to count in 144s I won't have any hair left to tear out.

Anyway so that's what I've been up to since NoME appeared.

hS
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