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Old 10-23-2015, 07:54 AM   #1
Lalaith
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Exciting Tolkien find - map lovers alert..

http://www.theguardian.com/books/201...d-of-the-rings

Ravenna the inspiration for Minas Tirith? Interesting...
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Old 10-23-2015, 09:14 AM   #2
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Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Inziladun is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.
Oh, for one close look at that map. I fear it's likely to end up in the hands of someone who only values it for its "pop culture" significance rather than as a unique window into the mind of such a great author.

Minas Tirith has always seemed rather Mediterranean, so the Ravenna connotation is maybe not that surprising.
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Old 10-25-2015, 02:56 PM   #3
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Pitchwife is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Pitchwife is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Pitchwife is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Pitchwife is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.Pitchwife is a guest of Galadriel in Lothlórien.
There's also a statement in Letter 294 that puts Minas Tirith "at about the latitude of Florence" and Pelargir at that of ancient Troy - so yes, Gondor is definitely mediterranean. It would be interesting though whether the Professor had any specific architectural features of Ravenna (or Florence, for that matter) in mind when he described the White City.
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Old 10-26-2015, 07:07 AM   #4
Faramir Jones
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White Tree Gondor compared to Venice

According to the Letters, Tolkien and his daughter Priscilla visited Italy from late July to mid-August 1955. In a letter dated 7th September, a reply to questions asked by a reader, Richard Jeffrey, Tolkien apologised for the delay in his reply, saying that the former's enquiry 'came while I was away, in Gondor (sc. Venice), as a change from the North Kingdom'. (Letter 168)
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Old 10-26-2015, 09:39 AM   #5
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Can't put my fingers on the quote right now, but I distinctly remember him speaking somewhere of Venice as Númenórean Pelargir before the Shadow came. It may be in a letter from the same time as the one you quoted, Faramir.

While we're dwelling on geographical correspondences, it's quite obvious that the coastline of Lindon, Minhiriath and Enedwaith broadly matches that of the British Isles (with the Irish Sea dried up) and France, except the Iberian Peninsula seems to have been mislaid.
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Old 10-26-2015, 04:49 PM   #6
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Oh, for one close look at that map. I fear it's likely to end up in the hands of someone who only values it for its "pop culture" significance rather than as a unique window into the mind of such a great author.
I agree! We need a fundraiser for the Downs to buy this at once!

To say nothing of the other items from Baynes' effects, talk about a fantasy nerd's treasure trove.
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Old 10-26-2015, 05:34 PM   #7
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Mentally I can't square Ravenna in the middle of endless flat fens with near-vertical Minas Tirith on its mountain seat
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Old 10-27-2015, 06:02 AM   #8
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White Tree A dream of Old Gondor

Pitchwife, you're right in terms of your reference. In Volume I, Chronology, of their The J.R.R.Tolkien Companion and Guide (2006), Christina Scull and Wayne Hammond deal in detail with Tolkien's 1955 trip to Italy with his daughter Priscilla. There is a lot of detail from Tolkien himself; because he kept a journal of the trip, which he called Giornale d'Italia.

On 27th July 1955, he wrote to Rayner Unwin, 'I leave the North Kingdom [England] for a rapid excursion to Gondor [Italy] on Saturday morning, but shall, I hope, be back by August 16'. (Chronology, p. 462)

His and Priscilla's trip to Italy is covered on pages 462-74 of the Chronology, and pages 463-8 deal with their time in Venice. On page 466, we read that after both had dinner with Christopher and Faith Tolkien, who were also staying in Venice, they returned to their hotel. Tolkien's account speaks of it being

a beautiful balmy night...Venice seemed incredible, elvishly lovely - to me like a dream of Old Gondor, or Pelagrir of the Númenorean ships, before the return of the Shadow.

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Old 11-07-2015, 09:12 PM   #9
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http://www.theguardian.com/books/201...d-of-the-rings

Ravenna the inspiration for Minas Tirith? Interesting...
I liked the reverence to "Dorwinich" in Rhun. Is that where the Second of the Nazgul, Kamul, came from. What, exactly is the origin of the Easterling?

I also saw some tantalising scrawling on Gundabad, which was off the top of the page. Wonder where that was going.
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Old 11-16-2015, 05:31 AM   #10
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I also saw some tantalising scrawling on Gundabad, which was off the top of the page. Wonder where that was going.
I found a better image on the internet, it reads "Eotheod", although I have no idea what it means
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Old 11-16-2015, 06:23 AM   #11
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It's perhaps a speculation on the lands of origin of the Éothéod, ancestors of the Eorlingas (aka the Rohirrim), who did originally come from the North before settling in the Mark.
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Old 11-20-2015, 09:12 AM   #12
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Shield You're right

You're right, Zigûr. While I don't have it to hand, I recall in the relevant essay in Unfinished Tales that the Éothéod moved to the upper vales of Anduin after the fall of Agmar, to seek more room.

By the time of Eorl, they had become too many for that location, but were constrained from moving south because of the growing power of Dol Guldur, occupied by Sauron. Therefore, the offer by Ruling Steward Cirion of Calenardhon to Eorl as a reward for their help would give them plenty of room to grow.
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Old 11-21-2015, 11:59 AM   #13
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I found a better image on the internet, it reads "Eotheod", although I have no idea what it means
Isn't it Anglo saxon or Old English for horse-people?
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Old 11-21-2015, 04:44 PM   #14
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I think Tolkien started writing Eomer... then changed to Theoden mid word... then got distracted and forgot to finish it, and ended up with Eotheod!

It's not impossible...

... although he might have meant eo(h) + þeód too
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Old 11-22-2015, 06:34 PM   #15
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The word Eotheód occurs in Appendix A as the name of either the people and/or the land of Eorl near the sources of Anduin, before the move south to Calenardhon.
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