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Old 09-11-2003, 04:00 PM   #41
Maédhros
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I found it also necessary at firts to comunicat what we decied. But we did clearly disagree with Aiwendil in this. And in view of the principals, I must say, that Aiwendil is right: If we find that mechanical monsters are possible, than we must not change the text only for clearty.
Ok, but before your suggestion Findegil, we transformed the mechanical monsters into animal ones. If he had previously used type 2 for normal dragons, why can't that stay. We know that Glaurung existed, I think that it would be clear that Morgoth would have breeded more than one animal dragon if you will, leaving the type 1 and 3 as mechanical monsters.
The transformation of type 2 to animal dragons was an idea that came from jallanite, and that we all had agreed, you included Findegil.
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Old 09-12-2003, 01:34 AM   #42
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But when you first agreed upon it, mechanical monsters seemed unacceptable for you. When I devoloped my Idea, I only looked for the dragons / monster in question themself and not to the editing process that my theory would force. If we sunder type 1 and type 2 so far as to make the on mechanical and the other animal like we must change at least 3 phrases in the text (FG-D-02, §§ 62 and 74).
Aiwendil had seen at once that if mechnical monsters are accepted this would allowe for much less heavy editing in the text, if we accept type 1 and 2 to be mechanical, as they were introduced in The Tale.
The problem that could have been produced by that would be the missing of type 4 dragons in the battle. But as my discussion shows that is not realy the case, since type 3 does often sound like type 4. So in conclusion many mentions of the dragons are so ambigous that any of the four types we psotulated has found its place in the sack of Gondolin. So some of the phrases used are confusing. But that is true for original The Tale as well.

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Findegil

P.S.: What ever we do in the end, the dragons in the sack of Gondoiln are a clear case for a paragraph in the appendix.
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Old 09-12-2003, 09:10 AM   #43
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Ok, but before your suggestion Findegil, we transformed the mechanical monsters into animal ones. If he had previously used type 2 for normal dragons, why can't that stay.
Our previous choice (to transform all mechanical dragons into animal dragons) was based on the idea that we must eliminate all the mechanical dragons. Types 1, 2, and 3 were changed indiscriminately into animals. But if we decide (as we now have) that mechanical dragons are okay, then we have no justification for eliminating type 2 (by replacing them with type 4). Such a change seems quite arbitrary.

There is also, as Findegil points out, the textual problem. Embarking on a program of editing the references to dragons so that each one is clearly a type 1, type 3, or type 4 can only damage the text. Bear in mind that in the original text these distinctions are not always clear and are certainly not identified explicitly.

Findegil's recent proposal is a solution to this; when we examine the text with the idea that type 4 dragons are present, we find that many references to the mechanical ones could be taken as references to animals. I definitely think this is the best way to go, since it involves minimal editing as well as avoiding the arbitrary change of type 2 to type 4. The one deficiency seems to be that the presence of animal dragons is not suggested strongly enough from the outset. At worst, that may have to be remedied by inserting one reference to them early on.

Maedhros wrote:
Quote:
The transformation of type 2 to animal dragons was an idea that came from jallanite, and that we all had agreed, you included Findegil.
The idea as it came from jallanite was rather different, though. There it was assumed that all the mechanical dragons would become animal ones. Jallanite's suggestion was a proposed way to make the change with minimal textual emendation.

Findegil wrote:
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What ever we do in the end, the dragons in the sack of Gondoiln are a clear case for a paragraph in the appendix.
Undoubtedly. The Fall of Gondolin section of the appendix will most likely prove quite lengthy.
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Old 09-17-2003, 07:11 AM   #44
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As far as I can see the theory with 4 types of monsters creats or rather shows 3 problems:

1. An inherernt problem of the theory is, that type 2 is very similar in its potency to type 4. Thus we have to answer the question: Why does Morgoth take the effort of creating mechanical Dragons so similar to the real ones he had already at his comand?
We can of course only gueses at the answere. But we have to find a probable answere to make the theory work.
One guess is that he had not enough type 4 dragons for the attak that he planed. That would imply that he had have haevy loses in the Nirneath.
Or it might be that he was unsitisfied with the behavior of the dragons in the Nirneath. Had Azaghâl wounded Glaurung a bit early in the course of that battle, the flight of the dragons might have turned the tide against Morgoth. So Morgoth might have wiched for beatst that do not act so irrational and tried his hand on mechanical monsters.
At last it might be that we have to look closer on what service the type 2 did in the battle: They crushed the Walls of the city by leaning their very haevy bodies against it. The iron type 1 was only able to crush the gate but not the walls around it. Copper has a high density (8.92 kg/dm³). For bronze the density depends highly on the actual alloy. Typical bronze (used for bearings, fittings, bronze-medals) is an alloy of copper and tin (7.28 kg/dm³). Other bronze could be copper with lead (11.36 kg/dm³) for hammers that does not produce sparks, silver (10.53 kg/dm³) for brazing for coopertubes, or with alluminium (2.7 kg/dm³) for a special combination of electrical and mechanical properties. (Sorry for that lenghty account, but I cuoldn't resist to show my professional knowledge.)
Only the last one could have a lower density than iron. So if the type 2 dragons would have been exactly in build like type 1 they would have been haevier. But since type 1 is hollow we might expect type 2 to be much havier than any other dragons. Type 4 is clearly a kind of lighweight dragon in comparission to any mechnical one since all animals we know have a over-all-density around 1 kg/dm³.
So it might be that Morgoth did know from Maeglin how heavy his monsters must be to break the walls of the city. And according to that knowledge he builded type 2 monsters.

2. The type 4 dragons are not clearly introduced in the text as having participated in the battle.
That is true and I wonder that Aiwendil is nearly willing to amand it with a insertion into the text. I do not think that this is neccessary. The reader will expect them to be their from the start, because they had been in any other battle since the Dagor Bargolach. That leads dirctly to the last problem:

3. The confusion between type 3 and type 4. I think in this we are no longer any good judge. We all have discussed so long about the creation scene that we can no longer read the text openminded. I think that a reader how had read before of the battle of Beleriand and Glaurungs deeds, will recognise type 1 and type 2 easily after the creation scene. But he will most probably take nearly all the mentions of type 3 in the original Tale as type 4. So what might be really needed is the clearification of type 3 not of type 4. I don't think we would like to edit each single type 3 mentioning. But may be we must prepare the read for the task we impose on him (to interpret the dragon type while reading). In the creation scene there is no mention of the later "name" "dragons of fire", with which they were mostly addressed in the text, but that could be easily amended:
Quote:
... yet others were creatures of pure flame that writhed like ropes of molten metal, and they brought to ruin whatever fabric they came nigh, and iron and stone melted before them and became as water, and {upon}[with] them {rode}[moved] the Balrogs {in hundreds}; and these [dragons of fire] were the most dire of all those monsters which M[orgoth] devised against Gondolin.
That is clearly a change for clearity but its benefit is in my view so geart that it should be made.

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Old 09-17-2003, 10:11 AM   #45
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Findegil, I was wondering if you could post your enmendations that you would like to do with 4 parragraphs that you have mentioned before, regarding the clarifications of dragons.
Posted by Findegil
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That is clearly a change for clearity but its benefit is in my view so geart that it should be made.
I'm all for clarification but, what do we gain from this?
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Old 09-17-2003, 01:12 PM   #46
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Posted by Maedhros:
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Findegil, I was wondering if you could post your emendations that you would like to do with 4 paragraphs that you have mentioned before, regarding the clarifications of dragons.
I think you are talking about this conclusion of mine:
Quote:
Aiwendil is right in his opinion that we could let the text stand as it is. That will produce 4 types of monsters of which 2 are mechanical and 3 are a new devised for the attack on Gondolin. Some of the original mentions would be change in the meaning and some will be obscure, so that in some places I at least feel a strong desire for "changes for clarity" (see especially §§ 76, 78, 94 and 121).
§ 121 is already given above with my proposed change and Aiwendil has hesitatingly agreed to it:
Quote:
§ 121 Now they journeyed down that river but were again in fear from Morgoth, and fought affrays with his Orc-bands and were in peril from the wolfriders, but his {firedrakes}[drakes of fire] sought not at them, both for the great exhaustion of their fires in the taking of Gondolin, and the increasing power of Ulmo as the river grew.
In $76 Are two monsters involved. A type 2 and a type 3. And in view of the description of type 3, the "jaws of that worm" can only mean type 2. Thus the clear text would be:
Quote:
§76 ... But there behold a quaking and a trampling, for the dragons labour mightily at beating a path up Amon Gwared and at casting down the walls of the city; and already there is a gap therein and a confusion of masonry where the ward-towers have fallen in ruin. Bands of the Swallow and of the Arch of Heaven there fight bitterly amid the wreck or contest the walls to east and west with the foe; but even as Tuor comes nigh driving the Orcs, one of those brazen snakes heaves against the {western} [eastern]/why was this change done?/ wall and a great mass of it shakes and falls, and behind comes a creature of fire and Balrogs [and monsters]/what kind of monsters are meant by this addition and for what was it done?/ {upon} [with] it. Flames gust from the jaws of that [brazen] worm and folk wither before it, and the wings of the helm of Tuor are blackened, but he stands and gathers about him his guard and all of the Arch and Swallow he can find, whereas on his right Ecthelion rallies the men of the Fountain of the South.
Mark that I do not really support the change I gave above. I only post it to make my interpretation of the scene clearer. The change might be nice or would smooth the reading but I don't think it is absolutely necessary.

Nearly the same goes for § 78. At first we see the approach of the type 3, but Tuor "hewed at a foot". But type 3 have no feet. So, it must again be a type 2 he is fighting against. In my original post I suggested to delete the type 3:
Quote:
§ 78 But so it is that few cannot fight always against the many, and Ecthelion's left arm got a sore rent from a whip of the Balrog's and his shield fell to earth{ even as {that}[a] FG-B-06.05b dragon of fire drew nigh amid the ruin of the walls}. Then Ecthelion must lean on Tuor, and Tuor might not leave him, though the very feet of the trampling beast were upon them, and they were like to be overborne: but Tuor hewed at a foot of the creature so that flame spouted forth, and that serpent screamed, lashing with its tail; and many of both Orcs and Noldor got their death therefrom. Now Tuor gathered his might and lifted Ecthelion, and amid a remnant of the folk got thereunder and escaped the drake; yet dire was the killing of men that beast had wrought, and the Gondolindrim were sorely shaken.
Now "the trampling beast" is clearly the type 2 of § 76.

The problem in § 94 is an iron serpent spouting flame, which I find strange, but, well, we do not have any hard evidence that type 1 could not spout flame. So, I think the text must stand.

The gain of the addition of "dragons of fire" in the creation scene (what § is it in, I wonder), is that we prepare the reader for the later mentions of that type of monster. Otherwise in my view only the § 50 and § 76 are understood clearly as type 3. The reader could take all other „dragons of fire“ as a mere variant of "fire dragons" and therewith interpreted as type 4.

Respectfully
Findegil

Only amended a few typo's.

<font size=1 color=339966>[ 7:57 AM January 21, 2004: Message edited by: Findegil ]
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