Concerning Hobbits, Rohirrim, and Ents

As this is a leap year, I do have 29 days in February, but Tolkien has 30. So technically, if we go through we have to bump all the LOTR dates forward to actually match them up, but I'm not going to. Condensing today will put me on schedule for March, and everything will be lovely. 


February 28-29-30, 3019 TA


Eomer overtakes the orcs just outside Fangorn forest. Not much of note. 


Eomer attacks the orcs at sunrise. 
"There was the sound of galloping horses. The Riders were drawing in their ring close round the knoll, risking the orc-arrows, so as to prevent any sortie, while a company rode off to deal with the newcomers. Suddenly Merry and Pippin realize that without moving they were now outside the circle: there was nothing between them and escape."
Pippin had previously managed to get his hands free, so they made good their escape. Meanwhile: 
"So it was that they did not see the last stand, when Ugluk was overtaken and brought to bay at the very edge of Fangorn. There he was slain at last by Eomer, the Third Marshal of the Mark, who dismounted and fought him sword to sword. And over the wide fields the keen-eyed Riders hunted down the few Orcs that had escaped and still had strength to fly."
Merry and Pippin then go along to find Treebeard:
"They found that they were looking at a most extraordinary face. It belonged to a large Man-like, almost Troll-like, figure, at least fourteen foot high, very sturdy, with a tall head, and hardly any neck. Whether it was clad in stuff like green and grey bark, or whether that was its hide, was difficult to say. At any rate the arms, at a short distance from the trunk, were not wrinkled, but covered with a brown smooth skin. The large feet had seen toes each. The lower part of the long face was covered with a sweeping grey beard, bushy, almost twiggy at the roots, thin and mossy at the ends. But at the moment, the hobbits noted little but the eyes. These deep eyes were now surveying them, slow and solemn, but very penetrating. They were brown, shot with a green light."
Today also Faramir 'sees the funeral boat of Boromir'. AND, last but not least, Frodo and Sam meet Gollum. Skip forward 146 pages and:
"The black crawling shape was now three-quarters of the way down, and perhaps fifty feet or less above the cliff's foot. Crouching stone-still in the shadow of a large boulder the hobbits watched him. He seemed to have come to a difficult passage or to be troubled about something. They could hear him snuffling, and now and again there was a harsh hiss of breath that sounded like a curse. He lifted his head, and they thought they heard him spit."


The beginning of the entmoot (yay!) and Aragorn's meeting with Eomer, on his way back from killing nasty little orcses. 



Appendix B, The Tale of Years 3017 "Gollum is released from Mordo. He is taken by Aragorn in the Dead Marshes, and bought to Thranduil in Mirkwood. Gandalf visits Minas Tirith and reads the scroll of Isildur. 
This also concludes the year by year summaries, as the next ones listed in the Tale of Years are the ones we are taking day by day. I have caught up with myself. 

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(Lest there should be any confusion or matter of rights and whatnot, all quotes in this post are from The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien. There may be slight errors, misspellings, or alternate punctuation in the quotes, and if you notice such, please inform me so that I can speedily remedy them. But I think the fact that I made this blog proves that I would never intentionally change something of Tolkien's in the transcribing of it.)

The Hunt Is On!


February 27th, 3019 TA

To begin with, Aragorn, Gimli, and Legolas have been running all night, and stopped for just a teeny bit before dawn. Then they found five dead orcs. This was, of course, a result of a food fight over the hobbits. The movie, though it had to squeeze some events together of course, did a pretty accurate rendition of Merry and Pippin with the orcs. Merry did in fact have a cut on his forehead. There was a fight. And they carried them exactly as we see them doing in the movie. Of course, they had to put Fangorn, Orc-fight, and Eomer attacking the orc band all in one night. But these sorts of things are inevitable in movies. 
'Now,' thought Pippin, 'if only it takes that ugly fellow a little while to get his troop under control, I've got a chance.' A gleam of hope had come to him. The edge of the black knife had snicked his arm, and then slid down to his wrist. He felt the blood trickling on to his hand, but he also felt the cold touch of steel against his skin.
All of this technically happened last night. Exciting. Which means it spans the 26th and the 27th, but there was already enough going on yesterday, so I am plunking it in here. I should also like to mention that, courtesy of Tolkien, I read through Aragorn finding the bodies of the orcs, and then had to go FORWARD 24 pages to watch them get killed. I shall have to go forward a good deal more to get to what happened to Frodo on the 26th after he left with Sam. Its a rather odd way of writing a book, can be annoying at times, but is also rather clever. It makes it quite suspenseful. It is also rather difficult to pull off well, and I have just had the privilege of reading a book that attempted to follow this style of telling a bunch of the story, and then going all the way back to the beginning to tell it from another character's point of view. It was not good. Said nameless book tried a good deal to hard to do something weird with the timelines, and in the end it made the timelines not match up properly, and did a few rather impossible things. One must be very careful if one is to set their timeline up this way. 
Now, as I so kindly neglected to mention yesterday, Eomer happened to hear of the orc band coming down from Emyn Muil, and now today, he set out after them against Theoden's orders. All this matter of him getting angrily banished and sent off to roam against his will is bilge. He left against the orders of his king, and was rather at fault, for all his intentions were honorable. In the end though, everything turned out splendidly, so he was forgiven. Reminds me of another incident in Gondor where someone broke a rule to try to help and even though he had the most honorable of intentions, was still required to face proper justice. Obviously, he was dealt with mercifully, but you get the idea. It wouldn't be an act of bravery to break the rule if you didn't still have to pay for it. The whole point is that the law is the law, and if you break it to help someone, it is a bit of a sacrifice. If you break it to defy a crazy person and help a bunch of good people, you will probably be dealt with mercifully, but that is not always the case. I am getting off on rather lengthy tangents today, but as they are all about LOTR, I think it is acceptable. NEXT.
Eomer sets out around midnight (yes I know, technically tomorrow, shut up. their days followed the sun, not some paltry 12 by 12 plan. Some day I shall speak further on that) to pursue the orc band, and I conclude this day. 
My apologies for the shameful lack of quotes, but I kept getting distracted by wanting to read the whole book, and now I am out of time.



Appendix B, The Tale of Years 3009 "Gandalf and Aragorn renew their hunt for Gollum at intervals during the next eight years, searching in the vales of Anduin, Mirkwood, and Rhovanion to the confines of Mordor. At some time during these years Gollum himself ventured into Mordor and was captured by Sauron. Elrond sends for Arwen, and she returns to Imladris; the Mountains and all lands eastward become dangerous." 

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(Lest there should be any confusion or matter of rights and whatnot, all quotes in this post are from The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien. There may be slight errors, misspellings, or alternate punctuation in the quotes, and if you notice such, please inform me so that I can speedily remedy them. But I think the fact that I made this blog proves that I would never intentionally change something of Tolkien's in the transcribing of it.)

The Breaking of the Fellowship


February 26, 3019 TA

This shall be a rather lengthy post, as February 26th is the day that Boromir dies. The Breaking of the Fellowship, the last chapter in The Fellowship of the Ring.
Let us begin at the beginning of the day itself. Mostly because of this gorgeous quote.

“The day came like fire and smoke. Low in the East there were black bars of cloud like the fumes of a great burning. The rising sun lit them from beneath with flames of murky red; but soon it climbed above them into a clear sky. The summit of Tol Brandir was tipped with gold.”

Aragorn calls the company together and offers them three choices. Follow Boromir west to the wars of Gondor. Turn east to ‘Fear and Shadow’. Or break the fellowship and “go this way and that as each may choose”. He then says that Frodo as the Ring-bearer, must decide. Frodo asks for an hour to be alone, and Aragorn concedes. And Boromir finds him in the woods, and is much less creepy than in the movie…at first. I think the movie almost made it seem as though he followed Frodo specifically to get the Ring, but I don’t really think think that was his plan. The Ring drew him, and at first there was no malice in his finding Frodo. I think he really thought that he was afraid for Frodo and was going to make sure he was alright. 

“’I was afraid for you, Frodo,’ he said, coming forward. ‘If Aragorn is right and Orcs are near, then none of us should wander alone, and you least of all: so much depends on you. And my heart too is heavy. May I stay now and talk for a while, since I have found you? It would comfort me. Where there are so many, all speech becomes a debate without end. But two together may perhaps find wisdom.’”

Then they talk for a while, and things begin to go basically as they did in the movie, except Frodo is much more intelligent. There is also more talking, and Boromir is less senseless and ridiculous, and makes somewhat decent arguments. It is less of him being greedy, and more of him desperately trying to save his city. Then the Ring quite takes hold of Boromir:

“His fair and pleasant face was hideously changed; a raging fire was in his eyes.”

Frodo dons the ring, and this happens:

“The Man gasped, stared for a moment amazed, and then ran wildly about, seeking here and there among the rocks and trees. ‘Miserable trickster!’ he shouted. ‘Let me get my hands on you! Now I see your mind. You will take the Ring to Sauron and sell us all. You have only waited your chance to leave us in the lurch. Curse you and all halflings to death and darkness!’ Then, catching his foot on a stone, he fell sprawling and lay upon his face. For a while he was as still as if his own curse had struck him down; then suddenly he wept.He rose and passed his hand over his eyes, dashing away tears. ‘What have I said?’ he cried. ‘What have I done? Frodo, Frodo!’ he called. ‘Come back! A madness took me, but it has passed. Come back!’"

Then Frodo, wearing the Ring sort of sees faraway places clearly. Almost as though he is looking through Sauron’s eye. And everywhere he looks he sees signs of war. Flame and smoke and orcs and battles. There is a moment of war in his mind when he cannot seem to control himself to take off the Ring, and is drawn towards the Eye. He then finds his mind cleared and takes off the Ring. Then realizes that he must leave now while he has a chance, and puts it back on again and leaves. Then we are taken back to the rest of the Company waiting at the river-side. Also, a lot of the Hobbit’s intelligence was cut out of the movie, so I must needs show this. The movies often cause one to forget that it is the Hobbits who know Frodo best, and understand what he is thinking. Not Men and Dwarves and Elves. 

“’We must stop him,’ said Pippin. ‘And that is what he is worrying about, I am sure. He knows we shan’t agree to his going east. And he doesn’t like to ask anyone to go with him, poor old fellow. Imagine it: going off to Mordor alone!’ Pippin shuddered. ‘But the dear silly old hobbit, he ought to know that he hasn’t got to ask. He ought to know that if we can’t stop him, we shan’t leave him.’”

Then Sam:

“’…And he isn’t worrying about us either: whether we’ll go along with him or no. He knows we mean to. That’s another thing that’s bothering him. If he screws himself up to go, he’ll want to go alone. Mark my words. We’re going to have trouble when he comes back. For he’ll screw himself up all right, as sure as his name’s Baggins.’”

Then Boromir comes back, and says only that he grew angry with Frodo, and Frodo vanished. And then Sam dashes off to go find Frodo, and Merry and Pippin dash off after him, and then Legolas and Gimli start running. Aragorn charges Boromir to protect them.

“’We shall all be scattered and lost,’ groaned Aragorn. ‘Boromir! I do not know what part you have played in this mischief, but help now! Go after those two young hobbits, and guard them at the least, even if you cannot find Frodo. Come back to this spot, if you find him, or any traces of him. I shall return soon.’”

Aragorn finds Sam, and then finds traces of the direction that Frodo went. He and Sam follow his footprints. Aragorn soon leaves Sam far behind, and Sam stops and says…. 

“’Whoa, Sam Gamgee!’ he said aloud. ‘Your legs are too short, so use your head! Let me see now! Boromir isn’t lying, that’s not his way; but he hasn’t told us everything. Something scared Mr. Frodo badly. He screwed himself up to the point, sudden. He made up his mind at last – to go. Where to? Off East. Not without Sam? Yes, without even his Sam. That’s hard, cruel hard.’”

Sam then realizes that Frodo has gone back to the boats, and makes his way back. He jumps after a boat being pushed into the water by an invisible Frodo, and is almost ‘drownded’. Frodo pulls him out, and Sam convinces Frodo that he is coming:

“’Of course it is,’ answered Sam. ‘But not alone. I’m coming too, or neither of us is going. I’ll knock holes in all the boats first.’”

And they go to the Eastern shore, and begin their journey on their own. And that concludes the Fellowship of the Ring. 
Then, to begin Two Towers, we go back to Aragorn tracking Frodo. Aragorn climbs up to the seat, and then hears the orcs and the cries of his friends. 

“Then suddenly with a deep-throated call a great horn blew, and the blasts of it smote the hills and echoed in the hollows, rising in a mighty shout above the roaring of the falls.”

The horn of Boromir. And then suddenly he realizes he doesn’t know what has become of Sam. He draws his sword and races to Boromir’s aid. 

“A mile, maybe, from Parth Galen in a little glade no far from the lake he found Boromir. He was sitting with his back to a great tree, as if he was resting. But Aragorn saw that he was pierced with many black-feathered arrows; his sword was still in his hand, but it was broken near the hilt; his horn cloven in two was at his side. Many Orcs lay slain, piled all about him and at his feet. Aragorn knelt beside him. Boromir opened his eyes and strove to speak. At last slow words came. ‘I tried to take the Ring from Frodo,’ he said. ‘I am sorry. I have paid.’ His glance strayed to his fallen enemies; twenty at least lay there. ‘They have gone: the Halflings: the Orcs have taken them. I think they are not dead. Orcs bound them.’ He paused and his eyes closed wearily. After a moment he spoke again.‘Farewell, Aragorn! Go to Minas Tirith and save my people! I have failed.’‘No!’ said Aragorn, taking his hand and kissing his brow. ‘You have conquered. Few have gained such a victory. Be at peace! Minas Tirith shall not fall!’” 

And then a moment later

“’Alas!’ said Aragorn. ‘Thus passes the heir of Denethor, Lord of the Tower of Guard. This is a bitter end. Now the Company is all in ruin. It is I that have failed. Vain was Gandalf’s trust in me. What shall I do now? Boromir has laid it on me to go to Minas Tirith, and my heart desires it; but where are the Ring and the Bearer? How shall I find them and save this Quest from disaster?’”

Many do not notice that in the film adaption of Fellowship of the Ring, after Boromir's death, Viggo Mortensen decided to take his bracers and wear them as part of his costume. He thought that Aragorn should take them to remember his friend by. It is never actually mentioned, but there is a scene where he can be seen putting them on. 

And to conclude:

“Sorrowfully they cast loose the funeral boat: there Boromir lay, restful, peaceful, gliding upon the bosom of the flowing water. The stream took him while they held their own boat back with their paddles. He flated by them, and slowly his boat departed, waning to a dark spot against the golden light; and then suddenly it vanished. Rauros roared on unchanging. The River had taken Boromir son of Denethor, and he was no seen again in Minas Tirith, standing as he used to stand upon the White Tower in the morning. But in Gondor in after-days it long was said that the elven boat rode the falls and the foaming pool, and bore him down through Osgiliath, and past the many mouths of Anduin, out into the Great Sea at night under the stars.”



Appendix B, The Tale of Years 3008 “In the autumn Gandalf pays his last visit to Frodo.”

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The Falls of Rauros


February 25, 3019 TA

Now then, after the Argonath, they arrive at the falls of Rauros and Tol Brandir.

“At the far southern end rose three peaks. The midmost stood somewhat forward from the others and sundered from them, an island in the waters, about which the flowing River flung pale shimmering arms. Distant but deep there campe up on the wind a roaring sound like the roll of thunder heard far away. ‘Behold Tol Brandir!’ said Aragorn…”

To the right of Tol Brandir is Amon Hen, and the lawn of Parth Galen is at the feet of Amon Hen.

“Aragorn led them to the right arm of the River. Here upon its western side under the shadow of Tol Brandir a green lawn ran down to the water from the feet of Amon Hen.”

They spend the night here, and of course one must not forget that Gollum has been tracking them since Moria. I have noticed that a lot of Aragorn’s lines in the book were given to Legolas in the movie. This does not particularly bother me, because to me it is more important that things get said at all, then who ends up saying them. But it’s interesting to point out that Aragorn and Legolas were switched up a little in the movies. In the books, it tended to be Aragorn who explained where they were and told the hobbits what they were seeing. Legolas was quieter and more reserved and mysterious. In the movies, Aragorn is the broody one, and Legolas the explainer. One of Legolas’ lines at Parth Galen in the movie is “a shadow and a threat has been growing in my mind” or something to that effect. In the book:

“’Why are you waking?’ asked Frodo. ‘It is not your watch.’‘I do not know,’ answered Aragorn; ‘but a shadow and a threat has been growing in my sleep. It would be well to draw your sword.’”

Another thing that occurred on this day was the first battle of the Fords of Isen. Today is the day that Theodred, son of Theoden King, was killed. Quite tragic that. 



Appendix B, The Tale of Years 3007 “Brand son of Bain becomes King in Dale. Death of Gilraen.”
Bain being Bard’s son from The Hobbit. Gilraen being Aragorn’s mother.

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Attack at Sarn Gebir


February 23rd 3019 TA

The attack at Sarn Gebir is not to be confused with the more notable attack later on at Parth Galen.
This Sarn Gebir was ended rather abruptly by Legolas, but also offered the first glimpse of one of the Nazgul on their winged beasts. 

“’Elbereth Gilthoniel!’ sighed Legolas as he looked up. Even as he did so, a dark shape, like a cloud and yet not a cloud, for it moved far more swiftly, came out of the blackness in the South, and sped towards the Company, blotting out all light as it approached. Soon it appeared as a great winged creature, blacker than the pits in the night. Fierce voices rose up to greet it from across the water. Frodo felt a sudden chill running through him and clutching at his heart; there was a deadly cold, like the memory of an old wound, in his shoulder. He crouched down as if to hide.Suddenly the great bow of Lorien sang. Shrill wen the arrow from the elven-string. Frodo looked up. Almost above him the winged shape swerved. There was a harsh croaking scream, as it fell out of the air, vanishing down into the gloom of the eastern shore. The sky was clean again. There was a tumult of many voices far away, cursing and wailing in the darkness, and then silence. Neither shaft nor cry came again from the east that night.”



Appendix B, The Tale of Years 3004 “Gandalf visits Frodo in the Shire, and does so at intervals during the next four years.”

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Gwaihir Bears Gandalf to Lorien


February 17th, 2019 TA

Not to make a whole post of it, but February 17th is the day that Gwaihir the eagle carried Gandalf to Lorien.

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Farewell To Lorien


February 16, 3019 TA

The Fellowship leaves Lorien, and of course the giving of the gifts. Cloaks and weapons and rope and little wooden boxes. And of course, the Phial of Galadriel.
“’And you, Ring-bearer,’ she said, turning to Frodo. ‘I come to you last who are not last in my thoughts. For you I have prepared this.’ She held up a small crystal phial: it glittered as she moved it, and rays of white light sprang from her hand. ‘In this phial,’ she said, ‘is caught the light of Earendil’s star, set amid the waters of my fountain. It will shine still brighter when nigh is about you. May it be a light to you in dark places, when all other lights go out. Remember Galadriel and her Mirror!’”

And hair. Let us never forget the hair. And then a gift which is less well known. I rather think that it was one of Galadriel’s gifts to Aragorn that inspired the whole story in the movie of him acquiring the Evenstar. I feel I ought to mention at this moment that Galadriel is Arwen’s grandmother. So Galadriel gives Aragorn a sheath made for his sword, and then asks him if there is any other gift he would ask of her.

“And Aragorn answered: ‘Lady, you know all my desire, and long held in keeping the only treasure that I seek. Yet it is not yours to give me, even if you would; and only through darkness shall I come to it.’‘Yet maybe this will lighten your heart,’ said Galadriel; ‘for it was left in my care to be given to you, should you pass through this land.’ Then she lifted from her lap a great stone of a clear green, set in a silver brooch that was wrought in the likeness of an eagle with outspread wings; and as she held it up the gem flashed like the sun shining through the leaves of spring. ‘This stone I gave to Celebrian my daughter, and she to hers; and now it comes to you as a token of hope. In this hour take the name that was foretold for you, Ellesar, the Elfstone of the house of Elendil!’”

So in a manner of speaking, he did get a jewel of sorts from Arwen.



Appendix B, The Tale of Years 3002 “Bilbo becomes a guest of Elrond, and settles in Rivendell.”

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The Mirror of Galadriel


February 15, 3019 TA

I have skipped two days of import, namely January 23rd and 25th. Over the course of these two days, Gandalf pursued the Balrog to the peak of Zirakzigil (23) and finally cast him down (25). He then died, in a manner of speaking,
“He casts down the Balrog, and passes away. His body lies on the peak.”
Then on February 15th,
“Gandalf returns to life, and lies in a trance.”
Also on the same day, is the well-known incident of the Mirror of Galadriel:
“With water from the stream Galadriel filled the basin to the brim, and breathed on it, and when the water was still again she spoke. ‘Here is the Mirror of Galadriel,’ she said. ‘I have brought you here so that you may look in it, if you will.’”

Another rather interesting bit of this scene is Galadriel’s comment on magic. For I have always distrusted magic and thought that the term should be used very carefully. Something that people apply to both good and evil ought to be mistrusted don’t you think?
“’And you?’ she said, turning to Sam. ‘For this is what your folk would call magic, I believe; though I do not understand clearly what they mean; and they seem to use the same word of the deceits of the Enemy. But this, if you will, is the magic of Galadriel. Did you not say that you wished to see Elf-magic?’”

And then Sam begins to realize that perhaps even “Elf-magic” isn’t really something one should consort with.

“[Galadriel:]’…the Mirror is dangerous as a guide of deeds.’

Sam sat on the ground and put his head in his hands. ‘I wish I had never come here, and I don’t want to see no more magic,’ he said and fell silent.”



Once again, a direct quote seemed to be the best choice.
Appendix B>> The Tale of Years 3001 “Bilbo’s farewell feast. Gandalf suspects his ring to be the One Ring. The guard on the Shire is doubled. Gandalf seeks for news of Gollum and calls on the help of Aragorn.”

Mentioning Bilbo’s farewell feast brings me to another delightful quote:

“[Bilbo:]’I don’t know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.’ This was unexpected and rather difficult. There was some scattered clapping, but most of them were trying to work it out and see if it came to a compliment.”

And for the record, I have worked it out, and it does come to a compliment.

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Caras Galadhon

The Day

January 17th 3019

“Suddenly they came out into the open again, and found themselves under a pale evening sky pricked by a few early stars. There was a wide treeless space before them, running in a great circle and bending away on either hand. Beyond it was a deep fosse lost in soft shadow, but the grass upon its brink was green, as if it glowed still in memory of the sun that had gone. Upon the further side there rose to a great height a green wall encircling a green hill thronged with mallorn-trees taller than any they had yet seen in all the land. Their height could not be guessed, but they stood up in the twilight like living towers. In their many-tiered branches and amid their ever-moving leaves countless lights were gleaming, green and gold and silver. Haldir turned towards the Company. ‘Welcome to Caras Galadhon!’ he said.”

Following Gandalf’s fall in Moria, the fellowship, now led by Aragorn, made their way to Lothlorien, seeking aid from the elves that dwelt there. On the 17th, in the evening, the company reached Caras Galadhon. Before that, however, they encountered Haldir, and spent the night in the trees, at which point this adorableness happened:

“Pippin wen on talking for a while. ‘I hope, if I do get to sleep in this bed-loft, that I shan’t roll off,’ he said.‘Once I do get to sleep,’ said Sam, ‘I shall go on sleeping, whether I roll off or no. And the less said, the sooner I’ll drop off, if you take my meaning.’”

Caras Galadhon is the city in which Celeborn and Galadriel live. Who, I must say, are considerably more friendly in the book than the movie made them out to be. In the movie, they are rather reserved and cold, and Haldir isn’t even willing to lead the fellowship to Caras Galadhon until Aragorn argues with him about it.
In the book, the elves are very friendly and nice, and when when they first meet Celeborn:

“’Sit now beside my chair, Frodo of the Shire!’ said Celeborn. ‘When all have come we will speak together.’”

For the purposes of this post, I skimmed through the chapters “Lothlorien and The Mirror of Galadriel” in hopes of finding a few outstanding quotes to use. Alas, the entire thing is one big amazing quote, and I have had to choose only a few more pertinent ones to pop in here. But in general, I plan on working future posts of this sort around actual quotes from Tolkien. His language and his words are just as important as the story itself, and the two should not be parted.


For this, I shall just give a direct quote, as I couldn’t really think of any easier way to explain what happened.

Appendix B >> The Tale of Years
c. 3000 The shadow of Mordor lengthens. Saruman dares to use the palantir or Orthanc, but becomes ensnared by Sauron, who has the Ithil-stone. He becomes a traitor to the Council. His spies report that the Shire is being closely guarded by the Rangers.
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