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View Full Version : OK, So Why Wasn't Aragorn Tempted by the One Ring?


eleanorigby
04-27-2008, 11:05 PM
Please god don't refer me to the books OR the appendices--I just reread them not 6 months ago. But now I find I have never asked myself that question and I have no answer. Hell, Gandalf and Galadriel were both tempted--and they're like mystical angel type folk (yeah, yeah--I'm sure you'll all correct me--whatever).

So, why wasn't Aragorn tempted? He's human--ok, Dunadine (spelling?), but still, human.

If this can be answered without too much detail re the names and ancestry of all the characters, that'd be good. If it can't, so be it--I'll just nod and pretend like I understand. :)

astro
04-27-2008, 11:37 PM
Here (http://suite101.com/article.cfm/tolkien/108830/1)

Short answer is that he was just made that way.

Elendil's Heir
04-27-2008, 11:43 PM
Pretty much, yup. He knew of the doom which found Isildur, his many-greats-grandfather, due to Isildur's temptation by the Ring, and was simply determined never to fall prey to it - and thus didn't. Quite an amazing guy.

eleanorigby
04-27-2008, 11:46 PM
Short answer is that he was just made that way.


That's deadly dull for narrative drive and action film. <sigh> I find that explanation to be very unsatisfying.


Aragorn (book) may not have been as conflicted as the movie one, but he did know that he would suffer great hardships and not rule for many, many years. Afterall, it was his future FIL who told him he wasn't worthy ( I never did like Elrond much).
All the films did were tweak his motivation a bit to add a dramatic element.

If that is the answer: that Aragorn just knew the Ring wasn't for him--kind of reverse Cinderella thing-- then how about we come up with our own reasons for his lack of temptation? Be as funny and as irreverent as you like.


I say he wasn't tempted by the Ring because he wasn't into bling. (if you want to make it rhyme, you go right ahead).

What say you? (heh)

5 time champ
04-27-2008, 11:49 PM
Good question, Aragorn accompanied the Hobbits for three weeks on the road ffrom Bree to Rivendell. I am sure he was sorely tempted, but he was able to resist the temptation.

One, Aragorn realized that if he took the Ring by force from Frodo, he would have almost immediately turned to evil. Only through the Ring's destruction could Aragorn reclaim the Kingship.

Two, with the Nargul so near by, Aragorn would not have had enough time to learn to wield the One Ring properly. Aragorn could not take on all of the Nine by himself, and the Nargul would have been drawn to Aragron immediately had he tried to use the Ring. Aragorn would have been well aware of the Prophecy that the Witch-King would not fall to the hand of Man.

Three, Aragorn had some help from the wearers of the Three Elven Rings. Elrond, Gandalf and especially Galadriel all were able to impart their knowledge and understanding to Aragorn- even from afar.

Four, the Ring was "consciously" trying to return to it's maker, Sauron. It felt the best way to do that was through the Nazgul who were close by, searching for the Ring.

Once the Ring reached Rivendell, Aragorn was even more protected. After the Ring left Rivendell, it chose Boromir best target to tempt.

5 time champ
04-28-2008, 12:06 AM
Also, Boromir- who wasn't one-hundredth the Dunedain as Aragorn- was quite able to resist the terrible temptation of the One Ring. That is until, it became obvious the Frodo was not going to continue on to Boromir's city of Minas Tirith.

Maastricht
04-28-2008, 12:17 AM
Aragorn had taken an asessment test and just knew he was good with swords and the outdoors, yet sucked with all things magic. Aragorn paid a lot of money for that asessment test, and he was old an wise enough to heed it.

eleanorigby
04-28-2008, 12:28 AM
Aragorn had taken an asessment test and just knew he was good with swords and the outdoors, yet sucked with all things magic. Aragorn paid a lot of money for that asessment test, and he was old and wise enough to heed it.


Meyers-Briggs or a vocational battery?

vison
04-28-2008, 01:05 AM
Aragorn had taken an asessment test and just knew he was good with swords and the outdoors, yet sucked with all things magic. Aragorn paid a lot of money for that asessment test, and he was old an wise enough to heed it.

And where were you with this incredible insight when we were fighting to the death on the LOTR fansites?

Jeez. :smack:

Apollyon
04-28-2008, 01:12 AM
Pretty much, yup. He knew of the doom which found Isildur, his many-greats-grandfather, due to Isildur's temptation by the Ring, and was simply determined never to fall prey to it - and thus didn't. Quite an amazing guy.
Faramir seemed quite immune to the ring's charms too (book), saying something like "I would not take this thing if it lay by the highway", and he didn't have anything like Aragorn's background to explain his resistance.

squeegee
04-28-2008, 01:16 AM
Faramir was a prince, in whom the blood of Numenor ran nearly pure, yada yada. Actually, the same could be said about Denethor, and look what happened to him.

DesertDog
04-28-2008, 01:27 AM
Faramir was a prince, in whom the blood of Numenor ran nearly pure, yada yada. Actually, the same could be said about Denethor, and look what happened to him.And Boromir as well. I'm guessing genetics played only a portion of the will-he-or-won't-he-be-tempted trope. Sam was tempted, having visions of Sam the Great setting things to rights, but decided he and the world would be better off with Sam the Gardner instead. On the other hand, Frodo failed at the last moment, possibly because he's been in contact with the ring for so long.

Leaper
04-28-2008, 01:49 AM
I'm not sure who specifically I read who said this (maybe many), but for an all-powerful ring with the ability to tempt anyone and everyone with its might, there sure were a lot of people who could resist it...

Malacandra
04-28-2008, 07:07 AM
Faramir was a prince, in whom the blood of Numenor ran nearly pure, yada yada. Actually, the same could be said about Denethor, and look what happened to him.
But Faramir was also smart enough to say "Don't even let me see it" - the mere knowledge that the Ring was close by wasn't enough to lure him, and he took care not to test his own will more than he could stand. Boromir was perhaps doing all right until he got a good square look at his own desires and the object of them in Lothlorien.

Walpurgis
04-28-2008, 07:35 AM
I had the idea that those not aware of the Ring's powers, or arrogant enough to think they could use it for their own ends (or imagining they could resist the lure), were the ones that fell prey it. Hence Denethor and Boromir becoming seduced but not Faramir or Aragorn. But, ya know, just the way I privately reason about it.

The Them
04-28-2008, 09:17 AM
Aragorn's girlfriend was, what, 2500 years old? She must have been a fairly forceful personality, and knowing what the One Ring would do to Aragorn, would've been pretty harsh on him about what he'd lose if he ever tried laying hands on the thing.



*duck and run bigtime*

Bridget Burke
04-28-2008, 09:24 AM
But Faramir was also smart enough to say "Don't even let me see it" - the mere knowledge that the Ring was close by wasn't enough to lure him, and he took care not to test his own will more than he could stand. Boromir was perhaps doing all right until he got a good square look at his own desires and the object of them in Lothlorien.

Faramir had spent more time studying ancient documents in the Gondor "library." And more time with Gandalf. (I seem to remember.) He knew the dangers of The Ring.

Boromir was a warrior & leader of men, with little time for arcane studies. So he saw The Ring as a weapon.

Of course, Faramir was a fighter, too. Times were hard.

Mangetout
04-28-2008, 09:37 AM
Pretty much, yup. He knew of the doom which found Isildur, his many-greats-grandfather, due to Isildur's temptation by the Ring, and was simply determined never to fall prey to it - and thus didn't. Quite an amazing guy.
That's the same as Gandalf and Galadriel isn't it? Tempted, but managed to resist.

Qadgop the Mercotan
04-28-2008, 09:46 AM
I had the idea that those not aware of the Ring's powers, or arrogant enough to think they could use it for their own ends (or imagining they could resist the lure), were the ones that fell prey it. Hence Denethor and Boromir becoming seduced but not Faramir or Aragorn. But, ya know, just the way I privately reason about it.
QFT.

But note that both Aragorn and Faramir refused to take possession of the ring, even to guard and ward it. If they had, they too would have been eventually affected.

As we say in AA: "If you want to stay dry, stay out of wet places".

D_Odds
04-28-2008, 09:56 AM
That's the same as Gandalf and Galadriel isn't it? Tempted, but managed to resist.
One might say that both Gandalf and Galadriel were aided by the Elven rings, whereas Aragorn had no help. Aragorn knew what fate awaited him if he took the ring; Faramir too (being the smarter brother). Boromir believed that the ring could be used and controlled, and the ring latched on that to tempt him.

ShelliBean
04-28-2008, 10:17 AM
Well, he went for it one night and grabbed it and put it on and he went all evil and powerful and when he was waving his sword around and doing his private "fancy dance of evil" that he'd been secretly practicing since he was not asked to return for the second round of auditions for Lord of the Dance, he noticed his reflection in the water and saw that the ring so did not match the fancy clasp on his cape so he screamed "oh snap!" and stuck his ring finger in his mouth to wet it and flung it expertly back into Frodo's hiding place for it.

Then he went to sleep and never spoke of it again. And we never discuss it because those pieces of the book were taken out and hidden beneath a Catholic Church in Mexico and spoken only in hushed tones by locals as the "Nerd Apocrypha."

eleanorigby
04-28-2008, 10:19 AM
And Boromir as well. I'm guessing genetics played only a portion of the will-he-or-won't-he-be-tempted trope. Sam was tempted, having visions of Sam the Great setting things to rights, but decided he and the world would be better off with Sam the Gardner instead. On the other hand, Frodo failed at the last moment, possibly because he's been in contact with the ring for so long.


Aha! [feminist literary theory] So, if genetics play a part.... Boromir was said to closely resemble their father; Faramir their mother. So, the strength to conquer temptation came from the female portion of the lineage--I'll bet if we did DNA testing on those Gondorians, we'd find an X-linked trait. This works with the "Faramir was just plain smarter" theory as well. Womanly wisdom passed down and all that. Just further proof that They Who Are Scarcely Mentioned actually DO rule the world[/feminist literary theory]

TheThem [more feminist literary theory] Aragorn as pussy whipped. Nice twist. And per Tolkien, Arwen's and Aragorn's relationship was the very opposite of the zipless fuck--more like the fuckless minds* :p [/mflt]


Leaper--excellent point. These books are more and more turning into Casablanca in my head--fantastic, but the more I look at them, the more plot holes I see, just like that wonderful film.


So Aragorn wasn't tempted because he was a mensch. Or he was a substance abuser* (too much lembas?). That wasn't Elvish he was muttering--it was the serenity prayer!

Suddenly, it all makes sense. :D









*I abase myself, but couldn't help it.

DSYoungEsq
04-28-2008, 10:48 AM
Folks, this is getting to the heart of one of my unfavorite parts of the movie trilogy: Peter Jackson totally failed to get the basic meaning behind the character of Faramir (and, to a lesser extent, Aragorn).

Look, we all know that for two ages of the world, the dominant culture was the elves. Now, the elves were pretty decent people, and they did a good job of caring for the land, but they weren't exactly perfect. The First Age ends up being full of strife over some trinkets that Feanor puts together in his spare time. The Second Age ends up being filled with strife over some trinkets that the elves near Moria put together under the influence of Sauron, which, you have to believe, came about to some extent because elves just can't help but think that running things with the help of little shining trinkets is a Good Idea.

Now, it's the Third Age, and mankind is coming into its own. The age will end with the passing of the Elves, these wise, kind folk who have tried for the most part to make the world a better place in which to live. Humans, we know, are greedy, grubbing folk who will sell their mother-in-law for whatever the market rate is. We can't expect much from humans, can we? I mean, look at our world now, and compare it to the world of the Third Age! Yikes!

But that's the whole point to Faramir and Aragorn. Here are humans, both of which are in need of power. Each has the chance to take the Ultimate Weapon and use it to gain the Ultimate Power. And each passes on it, each for their own unique reasons. Humans may be flawed, but we have the CAPACITY to be very good people.

Faramir, especially, is in the story to show that we shouldn't fear for the world under human rule, because humans CAN be good. The contrast between Faramir and Boromir couldn't be more plain, and wasn't just put there out of happenstance.

And Peter Jackson totally ruins the whole thing by changing the story. Faramir becomes just like any other human: unable to resist the temptation of power and greed.

To answer the OP: Aragorn isn't tempted because his value system is such that the "rewards" of the Ring aren't interesting to him. He knows enough to know that the Ring is a deception: he cannot truly become what he wants by using it. And since he isn't interested in power qua power, that means the temptation, if it exists, to take the Ring simply isn't very strong.

And think about it: would YOU give up a chance to have Liv Tyler as your wife for the chance to have orcs as your slaves?? :D

Frylock
04-28-2008, 11:00 AM
And Peter Jackson totally ruins the whole thing by changing the story. Faramir becomes just like any other human: unable to resist the temptation of power and greed.


Can you remind me how that went down in the movie?

-FrL-

eleanorigby
04-28-2008, 11:01 AM
But that is not true at all re PJ. Yes, he changed the story, but it is mentioned and dwelt on numerous times how there is good in Men and courage and honor. The whole point of the trilogy is to show the honor in Men (and Hobbits, which he did completely mess up).

Faramir and Aragorn are both held up as examples of that--A more than F, of course. Even Theoden is referred to as a noble man (as opposed to a nobleman).

trivial irritation: elves got drunk all the time--oh, sorry, the PC Middle Earth term would be "merry with wine." I love the scene with Gimli and his little hairy women, but Legolas was probably doing beer bongs and drunk off his ass, not having a little tingling in his fingers. :rolleyes:

Plynck
04-28-2008, 11:20 AM
And think about it: would YOU give up a chance to have Liv Tyler as your wife for the chance to have orcs as your slaves?? :DLet's skip nobility and look at it from a guys point of view.

Aragorn would come home, open a cold one and say something like "You wouldn't believe what those orcs got into today. If it wasn't for Lieutenant Mouth, I have no idea what I'd do."

And Liv Tyler would be all "Don't even think of looking at me with that eye unless you use a little Visine".

And Aragorn would be like "All I want to do is sit on my throne, wind down and watch the palantír. Who needs this shit? If anyone wants me, I'll be off bowling with the Ringwraiths."

eleanorigby
04-28-2008, 11:30 AM
<falls over, laughing>

And Aragorn would be all like, "you know, I could just make some female orcs. You better keep that in mind."

And Arwen would be all in his face with, "As if. You wish you could make some female orcs. They'd eat you for elevenses as soon as service you. And go get that Visine! and bring me my eye shade!"

smiling bandit
04-28-2008, 11:59 AM
I would like to point out that the Ring could pretty much get darn near anybody given enough time to work on them. The only beings who were totally resistant were essentially those tied closely to the land (animals, Bombadil and co., and maybe not even all of them) and greater beings. Anyone else was pretty much the Ring's beeyotch.

Morgyn
04-28-2008, 01:20 PM
Didn't Boromir and Faramir have different mothers? I seem to remember Tolkien mentioning that the blood of Numenor ran almost pure in Faramir, whereas the same wasn't true of Boromir. This was supposed to help explain why Boromir was more prone to temptation than Faramir. I think the books also suggested this was one of the reasons that Denethor favoured Boromir over Faramir.

Of course, Boromir was also in the Ring's presence for an extended period of time, so he had more opportunity to succumb than did Faramir.

Bridget Burke
04-28-2008, 01:20 PM
Folks, this is getting to the heart of one of my unfavorite parts of the movie trilogy: Peter Jackson totally failed to get the basic meaning behind the character of Faramir (and, to a lesser extent, Aragorn).

Look, we all know that for two ages of the world, the dominant culture was the elves. Now, the elves were pretty decent people, and they did a good job of caring for the land, but they weren't exactly perfect. The First Age ends up being full of strife over some trinkets that Feanor puts together in his spare time. The Second Age ends up being filled with strife over some trinkets that the elves near Moria put together under the influence of Sauron, which, you have to believe, came about to some extent because elves just can't help but think that running things with the help of little shining trinkets is a Good Idea.

Now, it's the Third Age, and mankind is coming into its own. The age will end with the passing of the Elves, these wise, kind folk who have tried for the most part to make the world a better place in which to live. Humans, we know, are greedy, grubbing folk who will sell their mother-in-law for whatever the market rate is. We can't expect much from humans, can we? I mean, look at our world now, and compare it to the world of the Third Age! Yikes!

But that's the whole point to Faramir and Aragorn. Here are humans, both of which are in need of power. Each has the chance to take the Ultimate Weapon and use it to gain the Ultimate Power. And each passes on it, each for their own unique reasons. Humans may be flawed, but we have the CAPACITY to be very good people.

Faramir, especially, is in the story to show that we shouldn't fear for the world under human rule, because humans CAN be good. The contrast between Faramir and Boromir couldn't be more plain, and wasn't just put there out of happenstance.

And Peter Jackson totally ruins the whole thing by changing the story. Faramir becomes just like any other human: unable to resist the temptation of power and greed.

To answer the OP: Aragorn isn't tempted because his value system is such that the "rewards" of the Ring aren't interesting to him. He knows enough to know that the Ring is a deception: he cannot truly become what he wants by using it. And since he isn't interested in power qua power, that means the temptation, if it exists, to take the Ring simply isn't very strong.

And think about it: would YOU give up a chance to have Liv Tyler as your wife for the chance to have orcs as your slaves?? :D

Faramir gave up The Ring in the movie, too. The decision just took longer.

Sauron
04-28-2008, 01:32 PM
The One Ring held no appeal for Aragorn, because his cell-phone provider was Squint. They offer thousands of downloadable rings at no charge, so he had his pick.

What the fool didn't realize was that Squint was a wholly owned subsidiary of Lidless Eye, Inc. He never had a chance -- one of the rings would get him, eventually.

freekalette
04-28-2008, 01:39 PM
Of course, Boromir was also in the Ring's presence for an extended period of time, so he had more opportunity to succumb than did Faramir.

That doesn't seem right, because it's mentioned that the closer the Ring gets to Mordor, the more power it draws from its master. So while Boromir was near the Ring for a lnger period of time, Faramir had to deal with a stronger ring that was desperately trying to help Sauron win.

I agree that the "brothers from different mothers" theme seems most likely.

jsc1953
04-28-2008, 01:53 PM
<falls over, laughing>

And Aragorn would be all like, "you know, I could just make some female orcs. You better keep that in mind."

And Arwen would be all in his face with, "As if. You wish you could make some female orcs. They'd eat you for elevenses as soon as service you. And go get that Visine! and bring me my eye shade!"

Arwen would throw out the "Ha! You cannot make -- you can only mock" crap that she always falls back on.

(This sounds like the "why Celeborn didn't go West with Galadriel" thread recently, which was the funniest LOTR post I've ever read.)

Elendil's Heir
04-28-2008, 02:36 PM
No, although different in appearance, temperament and vulnerability to the Ring's beckoning, Boromir and Fararmir were the sons of both Denethor and Finduilas.

furryman
04-28-2008, 02:47 PM
Decisions, decisions:

1. Liv Tyler and kingship over most of western Middle Earth

or

2. A bunch of dirty grubby orcs and kingship over the Land That The Sun Forgot (Plus caseloads of Visine)

Which would you pick?

DSYoungEsq
04-28-2008, 02:58 PM
Faramir gave up The Ring in the movie, too. The decision just took longer.
Yes, but he doesn't give it up out of any noble intentions, or out of some inner strength of positive qualities. He gives it up because he gets scared shitless by the reality of the whole thing, and realizes that, maybe, just maybe, Frodo is right to try and go destroy the thing. :mad:

It really pissed me off, too, because the scene in the book during the chapter "Window on the West" is one of the best scenes in the whole trilogy. Sam blurts out the fact that the Ring of Power is right there, in the cave with Faramir, and all he has to do is overpower some puny little halfling to have it, and Faramir isn't the least interested. The brother of Boromir, who was the last person to try and wrest the Ring by force, declines even the opportunity of trying to talk Frodo out of it, or out of his plan. At least as powerful in its own way as the scene with Galadriel, if not so easily presented from a dramatic standpoint.

Oh, and no, Boromir and Faramir did not have different mothers. Finduilas was the mother of both.

Love Rhombus
04-28-2008, 05:04 PM
So what if the Balrog got it? Would he hand it over to Sauron?

Little Nemo
04-28-2008, 05:15 PM
Hell, Gandalf and Galadriel were both tempted--and they're like mystical angel type folkI think their temptation was greater because their understanding of the Ring's power was greater. They knew what the Ring could do. Aragon's understanding of the Ring was more theoretical.

Fiver
04-28-2008, 05:17 PM
Sam blurts out the fact that the Ring of Power is right there, in the cave with Faramir, and all he has to do is overpower some puny little halfling to have it, and Faramir isn't the least interested. The brother of Boromir, who was the last person to try and wrest the Ring by force, declines even the opportunity of trying to talk Frodo out of it, or out of his plan. At least as powerful in its own way as the scene with Galadriel, if not so easily presented from a dramatic standpoint.Yes. Exactly! The difference between the brothers is crucial in light of what we know about their father.

Denethor regarded Faramir as a bumbler, not to be trusted with anything important, and not nearly as puissant or reliable as his older brother Boromir. But in his encounter with the Ring, Faramir proved, although Denethor never knew it, that he was a better man than his brother.

Modern moviemaking mandates that every character has to have a "story arc" and that's why they ruined this story in the films. A character who starts out on a high moral plane is considered less interesting than one who ascends to it.

In the commentary to The Two Towers Jackson admitted he could have handled this better.

eleanorigby
04-28-2008, 05:23 PM
So what if the Balrog got it? Would he hand it over to Sauron?


Balrog smash or eat.




I think the films still show Faramir as a deeper character than Boromir (the EE ones). I admire both characters, but I favor Faramir, personally. IMO, Denethor was threatened by Faramir's quest for knowledge (that and a guilty conscience).

HubZilla
04-28-2008, 06:37 PM
Two, with the Nargul so near by, Aragorn would not have had enough time to learn to wield the One Ring properly. Aragorn could not take on all of the Nine by himself, and the Nargul would have been drawn to Aragron immediately had he tried to use the Ring. Aragorn would have been well aware of the Prophecy that the Witch-King would not fall to the hand of Man.

Except Aragorn was able to defeat all nine by himself at Weathertop, both in the book and movie. It was hard to reconcile that with the Nazgul that appeared at Minas Tirith.

At least in the movie, the Nazgul's fell beasts did all the damage, not the Nazgul themselves. So I guess you could reconcile that.

DiggitCamara
04-28-2008, 06:55 PM
Except Aragorn was able to defeat all nine by himself at Weathertop, both in the book and movie. It was hard to reconcile that with the Nazgul that appeared at Minas Tirith.

At least in the movie, the Nazgul's fell beasts did all the damage, not the Nazgul themselves. So I guess you could reconcile that.
If I remember it correctly, in the book Aragorn himself wasn't quite sure why the Nazgul had left at first. When he saw they had wounded Frodo he saw they thought they had him and just had to wait one or two days more for the Ring and the shard of the dagger to do their dirty work. As creatures of fear and darkness, they would have preferred to bring Frodo under their command that way.

In the book the way they were involved in the siege of Minas Tirith was to instill fear from just out of reach of the arrows. They were more of a morale weapon than anything else. Of course, in the movie that would have been rather difficult to pull off and it would have made the movie even longer than it already was

eleanorigby
04-28-2008, 07:15 PM
Arwen would throw out the "Ha! You cannot make -- you can only mock" crap that she always falls back on.




And Aragorn shoots back with "well, you're stuck now, beeyotch--no ship will bear you hence. So, suck on that!"

Whereby Arwen storms off and slams the door in the White City castle thingy.

Aragorn will win some battles with Arwen, but he'll never win the war. Heh.

mbh
04-28-2008, 07:26 PM
"on that", or "on this"?

Guinastasia
04-28-2008, 07:49 PM
Well, I don't believe Legolas, Gimli, Merry or Pippin were ever tempted. Nor Elrond.

Sam was only once, after they encountered the Shelob? Only mildly, though.

eleanorigby
04-28-2008, 08:06 PM
"on that", or "on this"?


You nasty minded critter* you--on "that" ("that" being the fact that she cannot leave and won't die for centuries yet, indeed, will die alone and no one will care....)









* I like that in a Doper

Lumpy
04-28-2008, 08:06 PM
When was Gandalf tempted? AFAIK, the only thing that counts is that he didn't dare even touch the ring because he knew he would be "far too suitable" a host for it. If anything Gandalf knew better than anyone just who would be the servant and who the master in that case.

DSYoungEsq
04-28-2008, 09:22 PM
Except Aragorn was able to defeat all nine by himself at Weathertop, both in the book and movie. It was hard to reconcile that with the Nazgul that appeared at Minas Tirith.

At least in the movie, the Nazgul's fell beasts did all the damage, not the Nazgul themselves. So I guess you could reconcile that.
No. Aragorn never faced all nine at Weathertop. Only five were there, and he admits that they withdrew mostly because they think that the wound given to Frodo will cause him to succumb.

And remember that the Nazgul before Minas Tirith are much closer to the seat of power for their Master. They also have been spreading fear from "afar" as it were (high above the city, out of sight, but not quite out of mind). With the sole exception of the attempt by the Witch-King to ride in through the broken gates of Minas Tirith, there is no direct confrontation at all between them and their enemies, until the defiance of Eowen, which, of course, the Witch-King is hardly counting upon, and which does him in.

Civil Guy
04-28-2008, 10:14 PM
Um, are we missing something here? Yes: necessarily, there is a lot of stuff that they left out of both the books and the movies. (We don't get to see Goldberry at all, much less see her romping through the woods looking all natural and such. Sigh.)

Me, I suspect that Aragorn *was* tempted some, maybe a lot, but J.R.R. and PJ just never got around to exploring that part of it. Well, it was, after all, their story to respectively tell and show.

Morgyn
04-28-2008, 11:14 PM
No, although different in appearance, temperament and vulnerability to the Ring's beckoning, Boromir and Fararmir were the sons of both Denethor and Finduilas.Figures I'd misremember that. :smack:

Elendil's Heir
04-28-2008, 11:29 PM
Balrog smash or eat....

Couldn't smash it; the One Ring would be impervious even to a Balrog's mace. And if the Balrog ate the Ring, sooner or later it would, um, pass through the critter, and the Ring would resume finding its way back to Sauron. It might have to wait even longer than when Gollum had it under the mountain, though. Would you want to be the one to look through a giant steaming pile of Balrog dung?

DesertDog
04-29-2008, 12:56 AM
Decisions, decisions:

1. Liv Tyler and kingship over most of western Middle Earth

or

2. A bunch of dirty grubby orcs and kingship over the Land That The Sun Forgot (Plus caseloads of Visine)

Which would you pick?Boy, I dunno. Now, Miranda Otto and the chance to be a viking horseman is an easy choice.

PBear42
04-29-2008, 01:28 AM
There are two possible answers. One is practical, from the standpoint of storytelling. If Aragorn is tempted by the Ring, he gets it in Bree and the book is rather short. The other is squishy, but lets the story continue. For whatever reason, he isn't tempted. This is touched on not only at Bree but at the Council of Elrond. (Talking book here, don't recall whether the movie included this.) Having chosen his path, Aragorn follows it to the end. Which, happily, is victorious. Stated a little differently, reason number one is the answer. The story won't work if Aragorn is tempted. Ipso facto, he ain't.

Apollyon
04-29-2008, 01:49 AM
So what if the Balrog got it? Would he hand it over to Sauron?Maybe, but the Balrog didn't really work for Sauron... it used to work for Sauron's ex-boss, and was a maia of some sort (though lesser in power than Sauron). The Balrog getting the ring probably wouldn't have been all that great for Sauron (imo).

Danalan
04-29-2008, 02:37 AM
The connection between elves and humans doesn't get any stronger than in Aragorn, his artifacts, and symbols. The whole idea of Aragorn is that he's worthy of inheriting the lands, responsibilities, and benefits of middle earth from the elves.

I think that the Ring of Barahir, being from the first age, would help it's owner to be true and steadfast. After all, it's older than the one ring, one of the oldest artifacts existant. Unlike the other rings in the book, the Rings of Power, the Ring of Barahir is completely untainted and unaffected by the power of the One Ring.

The Ring of Barahir would represent, and in Aragorns case prove, direct descendence from the most righteous, loyal, and worthy humans ever. I have no difficulty believing that this knowledge alone would help resist the temptation of the One Ring, and that subtle magic might also play a part.

Koxinga
04-29-2008, 03:07 AM
I think that the Ring of Barahir, being from the first age, would help it's owner to be true and steadfast. After all, it's older than the one ring, one of the oldest artifacts existant. Unlike the other rings in the book, the Rings of Power, the Ring of Barahir is completely untainted and unaffected by the power of the One Ring.

Well, in the same sense that the one ring has no effect on Aragorn's saddle, or on that rock over there. As far as I can tell, Aragorn's ring is just a "thing", not a Ring of Power. Or am missing a critical point here?

Northern Piper
04-29-2008, 08:08 AM
If you want to be king,

Northern Piper
04-29-2008, 08:09 AM
You can't have a thing,

Northern Piper
04-29-2008, 08:10 AM
For the dangerous bling!

Northern Piper
04-29-2008, 08:11 AM
Burma-Shave!

Elendil's Heir
04-29-2008, 09:25 AM
::golf clap::

eleanorigby
04-29-2008, 09:50 AM
Couldn't smash it; the One Ring would be impervious even to a Balrog's mace. And if the Balrog ate the Ring, sooner or later it would, um, pass through the critter, and the Ring would resume finding its way back to Sauron. It might have to wait even longer than when Gollum had it under the mountain, though. Would you want to be the one to look through a giant steaming pile of Balrog dung?


Ok on the smashing; you're right. But the pile wouldn't be steaming forever (or would it? Does physics--heat transfer- apply in Middle Earth?). Really, Golllum's been much dirtier, no? Or maybe it would get lodged in the intestines of the Balrog, thus requiring a Healer to risk life and limb in order to save the Balrog's life*, completely altering the nature of ME when the Balrog turns out to be a Big Pussycat who likes his wings scratched.


Love the Burma Shave!

Tell me more about this ring of Aragorn's, because what Danalan says makes sense in a Tolkien way. The films do focus on it for a short bit, but I'd like to know more about it. And no, I don't want to read The Silmarillon, unless someone holds a gun to my head. I've tried several times and can't get past about page 20.... So, could someone help this ignorant slut and tell me more about Aragorn's ring--is it Elvish? How did he get it? (from his dad?)


*sounds like a job for our QtM.

Northern Piper
04-29-2008, 10:03 AM
And if the Balrog ate the Ring, sooner or later it would, um, pass through the critter, and the Ring would resume finding its way back to Sauron. It might have to wait even longer than when Gollum had it under the mountain, though. Would you want to be the one to look through a giant steaming pile of Balrog dung?It might even enhance the value of the Ring - hell, if it works for coffee beans (https://academicpursuits.us/columns/010525.html) ...

Elendil's Heir
04-29-2008, 10:29 AM
The Ring of Barahir was given to Barahir, Beren's father, by the Elves, and was a symbol of the eternal friendship of the Dunedain (noble Men) and the Elves. It wasn't magical, but had a very, very distinguished history - incl. a long stint with the kings and queens of Numenor - and was one of the tokens of Aragorn's impeccable royal lineage. In the LOTR EE, Saruman recognized the ring from Grima's description of it, looked it up in a book of ring-lore, and knew or had a strong suspicion as to who Aragorn really was.

Danalan
04-29-2008, 05:13 PM
Well, in the same sense that the one ring has no effect on Aragorn's saddle, or on that rock over there. As far as I can tell, Aragorn's ring is just a "thing", not a Ring of Power. Or am missing a critical point here?
Everyone in Middle Earth can use the One Ring to make themselves the ruler of all they see. Those with a lesser Ring of Power can oppose others efforts to become all-powerful rulers, but cannot become one themselves without the One Ring.

Aragorn is uniquely positioned to become an all-powerful ruler without the help of the One Ring. The Ring of Barahir on his finger is proof of that -- if the ring has any power it's the power of confirming ones worthiness. All Aragorn has to do, if tempted by the One Ring, is look at the ring he already wears. The One Ring could do no more for him than the Ring of Barahir. In fact, the negatives associated with the One Ring make it less attractive as a path to power than the Ring of Barahir (leading to Kingship). Does there need to be a tangible, portable, physical symbol of Aragorn's eventual Kingship -- does there need to be a Ring of Barahir? I think that without the Ring of Barahir as a constant reminder of his commitment to the path of righteousness, the Ring of Power might have been more tempting.

To summarize, the Ring of Barahir may have had no overt magical power, but it's symbolic power was both intrinsic and substantial.

eleanorigby
04-29-2008, 08:29 PM
Well, that and Aragorn was a mensch. ;)


I refuse to comment on those coffee beans--if ever there was a symbol of ridiculous extravagance.....


I'd prefer to search through Balrog poop than drink that coffee, meself.

Bravo Romeo
04-29-2008, 08:44 PM
I like to think that while Aragorn lived in a world where he was surrounded by beings with much greater power, skill and abilities than himself (Elves, Wizards, Dragons) he ultimately showed the power of being a Man, which is an inherent sense of good and all that cheesy "I'm doing it because it's right!" stuff. Was just talking to my Aunt the other day about the power of books, film, TV that has a message about what it means to be human.

Koxinga
04-29-2008, 09:11 PM
Everyone in Middle Earth can use the One Ring to make themselves the ruler of all they see. Those with a lesser Ring of Power can oppose others efforts to become all-powerful rulers, but cannot become one themselves without the One Ring.

Aragorn is uniquely positioned to become an all-powerful ruler without the help of the One Ring. The Ring of Barahir on his finger is proof of that -- if the ring has any power it's the power of confirming ones worthiness. All Aragorn has to do, if tempted by the One Ring, is look at the ring he already wears. The One Ring could do no more for him than the Ring of Barahir. In fact, the negatives associated with the One Ring make it less attractive as a path to power than the Ring of Barahir (leading to Kingship). Does there need to be a tangible, portable, physical symbol of Aragorn's eventual Kingship -- does there need to be a Ring of Barahir? I think that without the Ring of Barahir as a constant reminder of his commitment to the path of righteousness, the Ring of Power might have been more tempting.

To summarize, the Ring of Barahir may have had no overt magical power, but it's symbolic power was both intrinsic and substantial.

That makes sense, thanks.

What Exit?
04-29-2008, 09:41 PM
And no, I don't want to read The Silmarillon, unless someone holds a gun to my head. I've tried several times and can't get past about page 20....
Start on page 35 instead. That's the mistake you made.

Well, I've got nothing to add to this one, I showed up to late.

eleanorigby
04-29-2008, 10:01 PM
Start on page 35 instead. That's the mistake you made.

Well, I've got nothing to add to this one, I showed up to late.


Very funny. No chance. The book had 3 chances to enchant me and failed all three times. Next!

What Exit?
04-29-2008, 10:12 PM
Very funny. No chance. The book had 3 chances to enchant me and failed all three times. Next!
I was serious, the real book starts on page 35 in the hard cover. Before that is the creation myth.

In fact you might even want to try it one more time and start with the tale "Of Beren and Luthien" on page 162 Chapter XIX.

Many, many readers bog down in the Ainulindalë & Valaquenta.

I think if you start with a great story, it might be better. So consider just trying that one chapter: XIX.

Jim

eleanorigby
04-29-2008, 10:18 PM
I was serious, the real book starts on page 35 in the hard cover. Before that is the creation myth.

In fact you might even want to try it one more time and start with the tale "Of Beren and Luthien" on page 162 Chapter XIX.

Many, many readers bog down in the Ainulindalë & Valaquenta.

I think if you start with a great story, it might be better. So consider just trying that one chapter: XIX.

Jim


NO! I cannae do it, Cap'n. The dilithium crystals won't stand for it!


Oops, wrong fanatical fan fantasy series there. (please don't make me. I blench when I see the title. I'm on my knees here, tearing up. Mercy, kind sir, I beg of you!)

Apocalypso
04-29-2008, 10:20 PM
I always had the impression that:
1) Gandalf wasn't tempted by the ring because he was too powerful, he knew the whole story behind it, and the ring didn't attempt to "call" to him because of this. He didn't want to hold the ring directly because he'd have to battle Sauron directly and he wasn't allowed to do that (direct interference with the Yoomans was a big no-no for Ganders, he was supposed to be a sort of wise old fart who provided a little help, not solve problems for the mortals.)

2) Aragorn knew the story behind the ring and its false promises. He also was a student, or at least a ward, of Elrond, and presumably wise to the ways of magical items. Meaning he knew it would turn his finger green. Also that he knew better than to mess with powerful magic that he couldn't handle. And, as someone else said, knew it wasn't in his fate.

3) Faramir didn't fully understand what the ring was or what it did. Both brothers saw the ring only as a weapon that could be turned against Mordor but I've always thought Faramir figured it was a just slightly magical trinket. Maybe it shot flames or made the wearer faster or stronger, but THE dark lord's supreme source of power? Naaah. Hence Faramir's "pfft, I wouldn't even pick it up if it was laying by the road" remark.

4) Boromir didn't really understand the ring's power either until he got to the council of Elrond. Then his thought was "Whoa, here is a magical object of great power belonging to the dark lord we face. Why can't we take it and turn it against him?". He was more tempted than Faramir because A) he knew how powerful it was (from listening to Elrond, Gandalf, and others talking about it), B) he spent more time in the rings presence and the ring sensed it could use him to return to Sauron and so called to him.

5) Gimli wasn't tempted by the ring because every other dwarf that got one of them magical rings met a bad end.

6) Legolas wasn't tempted by the ring because he was afraid of its power. That powerful magic would SO muss his beautiful hair. Which he spent DAYS getting just right.

7) Sam was more worried about getting into Frodo's pants.

8) All Merry and Pippin were worried about was getting caught by that farmer whose carrots they stole. Their minds were too simple to be affected by much else.

What Exit?
04-29-2008, 10:21 PM
NO! I cannae do it, Cap'n. The dilithium crystals won't stand for it!


Oops, wrong fanatical fan fantasy series there. (please don't make me. I blench when I see the title. I'm on my knees here, tearing up. Mercy, kind sir, I beg of you!)
Ok, I am sorry. It was just a suggestion as the book has some truly great parts. Fingolfin fighting Melkor is probably my favorite but I think Beren and Luthien would have the widest audience and ties into Aragorn and Arwen.

The tale of Eärendil the Sailor is also a great chapter.

Elendil's Heir
04-29-2008, 11:49 PM
Actually, it took me three tries to truly appreciate The Silmarillion, and I read it all the way through each time. The first time I was baffled by the torrent of unfamiliar names and a bit put off by its quasi-Biblical tone. The second time it started to click, and I could at least glimpse what Tolkien was driving at, overall. The third time was the charm - all of the pieces fell into place, I could make the necessary connections between the various people and events, and could really appreciate its inventiveness and beauty. I'll echo What Exit?: Try again, please! It really is a magnificent literary accomplishment, and will amply repay a close reading.

For more on the Ring of Barahir, go about halfway down this Wiki article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ring_of_Barahir

For pictures of the movie version of Aragorn's ancient heirloom: http://apecollection.com/FOTO/varie/lord_anello_aragorn.jpg

http://council-of-elrond.com/castdb/aragorn/aragorn5.jpg

http://tolkiengateway.net/wiki/Image:Noble_Collection_-_Ring_of_Barahir.jpg

Coil
04-30-2008, 09:45 AM
The first time I was baffled by the torrent of unfamiliar names and a bit put off by its quasi-Biblical tone.
A few years ago I listened to the Silmarillion audio book and it does indeed have a very biblical tone (which I didn't get as much of the first time I read it in the past). I don't know who voiced that one but it was great listening to it.

smiling bandit
04-30-2008, 11:11 AM
Several points:

1) The Ring can tempt anyone, but it doesn't necessarily do so. It tried for Boromir especially because it saw that Boromir would try to smack down Sauron's armies, which would quickly lead it back to the Main Man himself.

2) Gandalf did take up the Ring briefly; simply touching it or picking it up doesn't mean it instantly corrupts you. Rather, it's the long-term effects which cause trouble.

3) Men were innately less resistant to magical control than most other beings. Hence those who had "the blood of Numenor" (i.e., elf-touched and often elf-descended) were better at resisting it. This was true right from the beginning.

4) I think people are only looking at the surface re: Boromir and Faramir. I doubt either of them really understood the nature of the Ring. Very few did, including the Council of the Wise, maybe, but not many outside of it. I'm not even sure Aragorn really knew that much about it.

Boromir did briefly succumb to it after months of exposure (and the Ring was really, really trying to get him), but regained his senses quickly once distracted from its effects. Faramir never really had serious exposure, so his resistance was not really threatened. Faramir was a bit closer to Mordor, but the Fellowship was already nearing its outer defences when Boromir bought it.

5) Whether and to what degree Aragorn was tempted is not clear. The fact that he ultimately decides to let Frodo go it alone, without him, indicates he's pretty sure he couldn't hold out close to Mordor.

6) Relating this to Denethor is interesting. Denethor actually pulled off what Saruman tried, with at least a little more success. He was able to see what he needed, and this probably let him hold off the orcs a little while longer, but the string both mental (fighting Sauron) and emotional (seeing the hopeless situation) was too much and he started cracking under the strain. Things might have been happier had he not "peeked," but he couldn't have known that and he was never bent to Sauron's will.

eleanorigby
04-30-2008, 11:40 AM
Ok, I am sorry. It was just a suggestion as the book has some truly great parts. Fingolfin fighting Melkor is probably my favorite but I think Beren and Luthien would have the widest audience and ties into Aragorn and Arwen.

The tale of Eärendil the Sailor is also a great chapter.


I truly have an aversion to it. Perhaps one day I'll get over it, because I believe that every book has its reader and also every book has its time with every reader. For some, that time never comes. I am impatient with Tolkien throughout most of the LOTR--there is too much description; every object has at least 4 names and is referred by them all in different parts. In short, all the reasons people say they love the books are the things that make me sigh.

I am interested in Beren and Luthien and yes, it would be cool to see the parallels, but I just can't do it. I cannot wade through the prose to find the story. I've said in the past that I'm not a true fan, not a fan like you or QtMet al. I love the languages and the depth of detail that Tolkien gave to his characters, but like a fine patina, I want to appreciate the glow, not see every layer. Reading TS is like dissecting a patina (as a concept, does that even make sense? Hope so). So, I thank you; I accept that it would be good, but I cannot do it.


(I feel like I just got drummed out of the foreign legion....)

Elendil's Heir
04-30-2008, 01:03 PM
We forgive you. Just promise us that you'll try again in ten years. Hey, you never know!

eleanorigby
04-30-2008, 01:33 PM
We forgive you. Just promise us that you'll try again in ten years. Hey, you never know!


Only if the cutest of you plays Beren (that's the guy I think). Oh shit--that means I die or something, right? Oh well, I 'm prepared to suffer for Art. :)

eleanorigby
04-30-2008, 06:39 PM
You didn't ask, but I'm telling you anyway: my Indian name is thread killer....
:(

ouryL
04-30-2008, 07:31 PM
Aragorn is an archetypical hero, much like that described by Campbell. His strength is nonmagical in nature.

When we meet him he is no longer the naive unschooled young boy like that represented by the Hobbits, but the seasoned warrior who has survived his mistakes and grown. He has prepared all his life for the fight of his life and the temptation of the Ring holds no sway over him. His strength lied in his iron resolve and his iron fist, not in magic.

Qadgop the Mercotan
04-30-2008, 08:46 PM
*sounds like a job for our QtM.
Balrog bezoar blocking bowels? I think not.

Some JRRT experts (well, me actually) have speculated that balrog belches and borborigmi would also be biliously blazing enough to consume the lesser rings, since balrogs were, after all, arsenous Ainur who adored Melkor's melody above Ainulindalë.

Seriously, a Valaraukar vielding the vun ring in its own intestine would be a foe too formidable even for an asshole like Annatar to face in a firefight.

dotchan
04-30-2008, 09:10 PM
Posting the following response for my roommate, who is outraged at your ivory tower theories. (I believe the exact term was "nincompoop", but I'm a little nicer than she is. :D )

They spell it out very clearly in the movie: Aragorn did not want to turn into another Isildur. He was going to fight the temptation no matter what. Maybe he did want to turn invisible and goggle at naked elf chicks, but he didn't want to be responsible for the end of the world as he knew it.

eleanorigby
04-30-2008, 09:22 PM
Balrog bezoar blocking bowels? I think not.

Some JRRT experts (well, me actually) have speculated that balrog belches and borborigmi would also be biliously blazing enough to consume the lesser rings, since balrogs were, after all, arsenous Ainur who adored Melkor's melody above Ainulindalë.

Seriously, a Valaraukar vielding the vun ring in its own intestine would be a foe too formidable even for an asshole like Annatar to face in a firefight.


I think I may need acid to help read this post. I didn't know you liked alliteration, doctor... :)

dotchan--but that is exactly what I and others like ouryL are saying. I call her nincompoop and raise her a kneejerk reactionary. <throws down Boromir's gauntlets> :) Plus, the film Aragorn, as much as he makes me lose my mind and any inhibitions I have ever had re sex with strangers, is not the same guy as in the books. Me, I prefer the film guy (for very obvious and shallow reasons). But we are discussing the character Tolkien created, not Viggo and the scriptwriters.

Qadgop the Mercotan
04-30-2008, 09:53 PM
They spell it out very clearly in the movie: Aragorn did not want to turn into another Isildur. He was going to fight the temptation no matter what. Maybe he did want to turn invisible and goggle at naked elf chicks, but he didn't want to be responsible for the end of the world as he knew it.
JRRT's Aragorn held Isildur in high esteem. Isildur was not seen as a greedy fool who lusted for the ring, but rather one who didn't understand precisely the power inherent in the ring, and kept it more as an heirloom and remembrance of those he lost in the War, particularly his father Elendil and his brother Anarion. Doubtless the ring influenced him to feel this way even more.

Remember, it was Sauron that Isildur had fought against all his life, and while Sauron ruled from behind the throne in Numenor, he did not flaunt the ring as the source of his power.

So when Elendil and Gil-Galad together cast Sauron down (dying in the process) and Isildur cut the ring from his finger and disembodied him, Isildur considered the problem solved. No Sauron, no problem.

Isildur came to rue this mistake greatly, as it cost him 3 of his sons as well as his own life. The high kingship was also lost.

Aragorn knew this and was wise enough not to covet the ring, and this helped him resist.

Qadgop the Mercotan
04-30-2008, 09:58 PM
I think I may need acid to help read this post. I didn't know you liked alliteration, doctor... :)
I take acetylsalicylic acid myself. Try it! 81 mg a day!

eleanorigby
04-30-2008, 09:59 PM
I take acetylsalicylic acid myself. Try it! 81 mg a day!


Come here.



Let me beat you.



<smacks QtM with wet trout>

Qadgop the Mercotan
04-30-2008, 10:21 PM
<smacks QtM with wet trout>
<apropos of nothing> I watched a bald eagle tear apart a trout right on my beach on Sunday AM past. I was surprised by how it had to fend off two crows while doing this.

I wonder if Gollum had to contend with crows.........

eleanorigby
04-30-2008, 10:40 PM
<apropos of nothing> I watched a bald eagle tear apart a trout right on my beach on Sunday AM past. I was surprised by how it had to fend off two crows while doing this.

I wonder if Gollum had to contend with crows.........


Now I think you are ON acid. Crows are communal birds--they have a complex social network and as such, I wouldn't be surprised to see a few take on an eagle. Gollum had to contend with Tolkien's "let me get out of a tight literary corner and use this handy vehicle which is never mentioned or considered until I cannot figure out what else to do in 2 different books, no less" aka eagles. :p

Trout sounds good about now.

Elendil's Heir
05-01-2008, 12:02 AM
In Bored of the Rings, the Eagles which rescue Frito have "Deus Ex Machina Airlines" emblazoned on their sides. :D

Malacandra
05-01-2008, 04:17 AM
<apropos of nothing> I watched a bald eagle tear apart a trout right on my beach on Sunday AM past. I was surprised by how it had to fend off two crows while doing this.

I wonder if Gollum had to contend with crows.........
"...crows? Dotard! What is the House of Eorl but a thatched barn where brigands drink in the reek, and their brats roll on the floor among the dogs?"

eleanorigby
05-01-2008, 08:07 AM
In Bored of the Rings, the Eagles which rescue Frito have "Deus Ex Machina Airlines" emblazoned on their sides. :D


Now, that's a book I must read!



Note: Gandalf is called Stormcrow by Wormtongue/Theoden. Coincidence? I think not!

smiling bandit
05-01-2008, 09:31 AM
Remember, it was Sauron that Isildur had fought against all his life, and while Sauron ruled from behind the throne in Numenor, he did not flaunt the ring as the source of his power.

Unlike the movie, of course, in the book no one really had a good idea of what the One Ring really was until much later, even the Elf-Lords, right?

Rube E. Tewesday
05-01-2008, 09:42 AM
Unlike the movie, of course, in the book no one really had a good idea of what the One Ring really was until much later, even the Elf-Lords, right?

Well, IIRC, in the book, Elrond was standing beside Isildur when he took the Ring, and said something along the lines of "Throw that damn thing in damn Mount Doom, damn skippy, chucklehead" (it sounded much classier in Quenya, naturally), but to no avail.

Eonwe
05-01-2008, 12:26 PM
No no no! You guys are missing the obvious answer to the OP!

Aragorn had a higher concentration of Mediclurians in his blood stream, which provided him with a greater innate power to resist the ring's influence! That's also why Sam was able to use the ring for a brief period without any ill effects.

Scumpup
05-01-2008, 12:34 PM
There was a wide-spread rumor at the time that The One Ring was originally a part of Sauron's Arab Strap (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arab_strap_%28sexual_device%29). Aragorn found this sufficiently oogie that he didn't even want to touch the ring, knowing where it had been, much less actually use it.

DSYoungEsq
05-01-2008, 01:09 PM
Unlike the movie, of course, in the book no one really had a good idea of what the One Ring really was until much later, even the Elf-Lords, right?
No. Celebrimbor, who forged the three elven rings, immediately perceived what Sauron was up to the first time he put on the One Ring. Thus were the three hidden, so as not to allow Sauron mastery over the elves.

Qadgop the Mercotan
05-01-2008, 08:53 PM
No. Celebrimbor, who forged the three elven rings, immediately perceived what Sauron was up to the first time he put on the One Ring. Thus were the three hidden, so as not to allow Sauron mastery over the elves.
But the knowledge of the rings was not widely disseminated by the elves in the know. The three were dispersed among the most powerful Eldar, and not wielded. They didn't talk much about the matter, as far as can be gleaned from JRRT's writings. And while all this was going on, the men of the West lived in Numenor.

So Isildur could well have been expected to be ignorant regarding the matter of so much of Sauron's power being tied up in his jewelry. He apparently knew just enough to cut the ring from Sauron, but beyond that?

Isildur had been widely respected in his lifetime. He rescued a fruit from the White Tree in the King's Court in Numenor, right from under Sauron's nose, thus preserving the tree for the Dunedain. He led a contingent of faithful away from the wreck of Numenor, and with his brother founded the realm of Gondor and Osgiliath, its chief city. He personally founded Minas Ithil in Ithilien.

So he was a pretty stand-up guy. While the ring could have seduced him, I still suspect he was mainly ignorant of its true nature.

Qadgop the Mercotan
05-01-2008, 08:56 PM
Now, that's a book I must read!
Yes, you should.

The ring's inscription, in BOTR: "Grundig blaupunkt luger frug Watusi snarf wazoo! Nixon dirksen nasahist Rebozo boogaloo".

This translates to:

"This ring, no other, is made by the elves, Who'd pawn their own mother to grab it themselves".

OttoDaFe
05-01-2008, 11:40 PM
In Bored of the Rings, the Eagles which rescue Frito have "Deus Ex Machina Airlines" emblazoned on their sides. :DTo be a bit of a pedant,* there's only one (Gwanho), who utters these deathless words to the True King:

. . . and use those paper bags. That's what they're there for, mac.
*about BoTR???!!!???

DesertDog
05-02-2008, 02:17 AM
Ok, I am sorry. It was just a suggestion as the book has some truly great parts. Fingolfin fighting Melkor is probably my favorite but I think Beren and Luthien would have the widest audience and ties into Aragorn and Arwen.I've often thought that if they're going to make Tolkien a movie franchise, they got to do Beren and Lúthien's story. Imagine the possibilities. Thingol's enmity and his sending Beren off on a doomed quest for Lúthien's bride price. Lúthien's fighting her way to Beren's rescue and then the two of them in Angband, Morgoth's fortress. Morgoth himself, under whom the mighty Sauron was a mere lieutenant. Carcharoth and Beren, and later, Huan. Lúthien's sacrifice to save Beren, the first of elf kind to become mortal. Maybe after The Hobbit.

If I'd had a daughter, I'd have named her Lúthien.

Koxinga
05-02-2008, 02:29 AM
I've often thought that if they're going to make Tolkien a movie franchise, they got to do Beren and Lúthien's story. Imagine the possibilities. Thingol's enmity and his sending Beren off on a doomed quest for Lúthien's bride price. Lúthien's fighting her way to Beren's rescue and then the two of them in Angband, Morgoth's fortress. Morgoth himself, under whom the mighty Sauron was a mere lieutenant. Carcharoth and Beren, and later, Huan. Lúthien's sacrifice to save Beren, the first of elf kind to become mortal. Maybe after The Hobbit.


If we're lucky, the general public will compare it favorably to Eragon (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eragon_%28film%29) .

Malacandra
05-02-2008, 03:33 AM
To be a bit of a pedant,* there's only one (Gwanho), who utters these deathless words to the True King:

. . . and use those paper bags. That's what they're there for, mac.
*about BoTR???!!!???
Pedantry II: That's "Gwahno".

eleanorigby
05-02-2008, 08:29 AM
There was a wide-spread rumor at the time that The One Ring was originally a part of Sauron's Arab Strap (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arab_strap_%28sexual_device%29). Aragorn found this sufficiently oogie that he didn't even want to touch the ring, knowing where it had been, much less actually use it.


Make that a Prince Albert, and you're almost there. These were stories designed by Tolkien to be folklore and legend for Britain--so none of this Infidel crap for Aragorn!
:)


Mediclurians?

WTH are these? They sound Star Trek-ky.

What Exit?
05-02-2008, 08:56 AM
I've often thought that if they're going to make Tolkien a movie franchise, they got to do Beren and Lúthien's story. Imagine the possibilities. Thingol's enmity and his sending Beren off on a doomed quest for Lúthien's bride price. Lúthien's fighting her way to Beren's rescue and then the two of them in Angband, Morgoth's fortress. Morgoth himself, under whom the mighty Sauron was a mere lieutenant. Carcharoth and Beren, and later, Huan. Lúthien's sacrifice to save Beren, the first of elf kind to become mortal. Maybe after The Hobbit.
I would love to see it, but I would love to see HBO work with the BBC to produce a long mini-series of the Silmarillion.
If I'd had a daughter, I'd have named her Lúthien.
I thought about it, but I decided it was a bit much. Of course my wife and I instead chose a variant of a name from a CSN song that everyone thinks is based on King Arthur. (Especially as I have always been a big fan of the tales of King Arthur and his knights.)

Mediclurians?
WTH are these? They sound Star Trek-ky.
That stumped me at first too, then I realized it was a misspelling of a scientology term.


Jim

Qadgop the Mercotan
05-02-2008, 09:15 AM
WTH are these? They sound Star Trek-ky.
Midichlorians. They're from the Star Wars universe. And they're a pretty lame concept there, too. IMHO.

DSYoungEsq
05-02-2008, 09:35 AM
But the knowledge of the rings was not widely disseminated by the elves in the know. The three were dispersed among the most powerful Eldar, and not wielded. They didn't talk much about the matter, as far as can be gleaned from JRRT's writings. And while all this was going on, the men of the West lived in Numenor.

So Isildur could well have been expected to be ignorant regarding the matter of so much of Sauron's power being tied up in his jewelry. He apparently knew just enough to cut the ring from Sauron, but beyond that?

Isildur had been widely respected in his lifetime. He rescued a fruit from the White Tree in the King's Court in Numenor, right from under Sauron's nose, thus preserving the tree for the Dunedain. He led a contingent of faithful away from the wreck of Numenor, and with his brother founded the realm of Gondor and Osgiliath, its chief city. He personally founded Minas Ithil in Ithilien.

So he was a pretty stand-up guy. While the ring could have seduced him, I still suspect he was mainly ignorant of its true nature.
Isildur may not have understood the full potential of the Ring, true (but please note my response was to the concept posited that the elf-lords didn't know what the Ring did ;) ). But Elrond certainly knew what it did, and would have known that men had been swayed before by the rings that the Gift Giver had handed out. So I am certain he told Isildur sufficient when he urged him to toss the Ring into the fires of Orodruin to apprise Isildur of the Ring's likely ability to corrupt any who might try to use it, or danger to the world if it remained around.

Personally, I've always considered Isildur a fore-runner of Boromir: fearless and proud, convinced in the rightness of what they do, destined to lead and knowing it. Contrast his sire, Elendil, who is much less all about himself: he leads because it's his job and he happens to be good at it, but doesn't really act all that proudly and self-enamoured about it. Isildur doesn't destroy the Ring for two reasons. First, he thinks he deserves some recompense for losing his brother and father (among others), and isn't likely to get any from the elves that remain after the battle. Second, he just doesn't think it possible that he'd be unable to properly control and govern the Ring. He might even be correct, for look how quickly the Ring deserts him, which I think shows the Ring quickly sized him up as someone who would be difficult to control.

But I do not for a single minute think that Isildur took the Ring because he was ignorant of its potential.

ETA: And remember, there's this silly piece of doggerel around talking about the whole thing:

Three rings for elven kings under the sky,
Seven for the dwarf lords in their halls of stone. etc. Not very enigmatic, that. :D

Scumpup
05-02-2008, 09:38 AM
Could someone very briefly explain how possessing the ring gives the bearer the power to do anything besides turn invisible? What was the potential that Isildur wished to exploit?

DSYoungEsq
05-02-2008, 09:38 AM
Now, that's a book I must read!
Well worth the read!

"Aiee! cried Legolam. A Thesaurus!!"

"Maim! roared the monster. Mangle, mutilate, crush. See: HARM." :p :p :p

Qadgop the Mercotan
05-02-2008, 10:00 AM
Could someone very briefly explain how possessing the ring gives the bearer the power to do anything besides turn invisible? What was the potential that Isildur wished to exploit?
This (http://oakroadsystems.com/genl/ringfaq.htm#Q1-Powers) is from FAQ of the Rings (http://oakroadsystems.com/genl/ringfaq.htm). A most useful site.

Qadgop the Mercotan
05-02-2008, 10:04 AM
DS, I can't disagree with you much, but I'm still not sure that Elrond was all that forthcoming with Isildur. Perhaps he shared his knowledge with Elendil, perhaps not. He certainly might have just expected to be obeyed when he said "Don't touch that! Oh now you've gone and picked it up!! Throw it away! Now! There's a good Atani......."

And we don't really know when that doggerel was authored, or widely distributed, do we? ;)

Eonwe
05-02-2008, 10:35 AM
WTH are these? They sound Star Trek-ky.


That stumped me at first too, then I realized it was a misspelling of a scientology term.


Midichlorians. They're from the Star Wars universe. And they're a pretty lame concept there, too. IMHO.


Qadgop got it. Talk about a joke that fell flat! The idea was that just as Lucas took the magic out of Star Wars and The Force by introducing a definite, biological explination for The Force, maybe we could science away the meaning and significance of Aragorn's resistance to the ring, haha! I guess it just goes to show that one might be a Tolkien geek without necessarily dipping one's toes in other forms of geekery. :)

What Exit?
05-02-2008, 10:55 AM
Qadgop got it. Talk about a joke that fell flat! The idea was that just as Lucas took the magic out of Star Wars and The Force by introducing a definite, biological explination for The Force, maybe we could science away the meaning and significance of Aragorn's resistance to the ring, haha! I guess it just goes to show that one might be a Tolkien geek without necessarily dipping one's toes in other forms of geekery. :)
That's okay, my joke fell flat to. I was comparing a dumb Lucas idea to Thetans.

DesertDog
05-02-2008, 12:26 PM
I would love to see it, but I would love to see HBO work with the BBC to produce a long mini-series of the Silmarillion.I'd second that and maybe the trilogy as well. With a mini-series there would be time to get more of the good bits in. I mean, I like the Jackson-directed movies as movies, but couldn't help but notice almost all the best dialog was lifted from JRR.

Bridget Burke
05-02-2008, 01:33 PM
I'd second that and maybe the trilogy as well. With a mini-series there would be time to get more of the good bits in. I mean, I like the Jackson-directed movies as movies, but couldn't help but notice almost all the best dialog was lifted from JRR.

Peter Jackson has been criticized for changing plot elements for the movies. (I understand why he had to make changes--but agree that he may not always have made the right ones.)

Now, he's being criticized for not changing Tolkien's words!

Poor guy can't win.....

DesertDog
05-02-2008, 01:47 PM
Peter Jackson has been criticized for changing plot elements for the movies. (I understand why he had to make changes--but agree that he may not always have made the right ones.)

Now, he's being criticized for not changing Tolkien's words!

Poor guy can't win.....Oh, I wasn't meaning that as a criticism. In a similar vein, whole pages of The Maltese Falcon were taken directly from Hammett, but it still took Huston's skills to get them to the screen in a fitting manner.

DSYoungEsq
05-02-2008, 03:38 PM
Thus, the reason for the unresolvable feelings many of us have about the movies: wonderful, almost masterful direction in so many ways, the settings, the staging, the pacing, combined with the repeatedly unnecessary changes to plot and dialogue. The movies make a Tolkein lover schizophrenic. :eek:

mlees
05-02-2008, 03:40 PM
A roller coaster, eh?

I liked the movies, probably because I am not a hard core walking Tolkien encyclopedia.

Captain Carrot
05-02-2008, 03:48 PM
If I remember it correctly, in the book Aragorn himself wasn't quite sure why the Nazgul had left at first. When he saw they had wounded Frodo he saw they thought they had him and just had to wait one or two days more for the Ring and the shard of the dagger to do their dirty work. As creatures of fear and darkness, they would have preferred to bring Frodo under their command that way. It always seemed to me that it wasn't so much that he defeated them as that he drove them off. At first they were facing Sam, Frodo, Pippin, and Merry, four small humanoids with little to no combat training, at a psychological disadvantage (Would you want to fight these huge evil ghostly things?), and far weaker than the Nazgul. They stick Frodo, which would have been all they needed to do had he not gotten medical attention, and then this ranger comes out, wielding a sword and a torch, and generally being much more annoying to deal with. "Fuck fighting this guy, we've done what we came to do, and he can't fix it anyway!"

Someday I will finish reading the books; I just can't stand Tolkien's verbosity.

mlees
05-02-2008, 03:50 PM
It always seemed to me that it wasn't so much that he defeated them as that he drove them off. At first they were facing Sam, Frodo, Pippin, and Merry, four small humanoids with little to no combat training, at a psychological disadvantage (Would you want to fight these huge evil ghostly things?), and far weaker than the Nazgul. They stick Frodo, which would have been all they needed to do had he not gotten medical attention, and then this ranger comes out, wielding a sword and a torch, and generally being much more annoying to deal with. "Fuck fighting this guy, we've done what we came to do, and he can't fix it anyway!"

Someday I will finish reading the books; I just can't stand Tolkien's verbosity.

They were able to see that Aragorn was a level 50 Champion, with tons of hit points?

Qadgop the Mercotan
05-02-2008, 03:51 PM
Someday I will finish reading the books; I just can't stand Tolkien's verbosity.
You...................dwarf, you!

Northern Piper
05-02-2008, 03:52 PM
And we don't really know when that doggerel was authored, or widely distributed, do we? ;)Well, we know when and by whom the most important lines were composed.

As Gandalf explains, quoting Saruman: "The Nine, the Seven, and the Three had each their proper gem. not so the One. It was round and unadorned, as it were one of the lesser rings; buts its maker set marks upon it that the skilled, maybe, could still see and read."

Those marks, of course, are the most important part of the verse, which Gandalf quotes at the Council of Elrond:Ash nazg durbatulûk, ash nazg gimbatul, ash nazg thrakatulûk agh burzum-ishi krimpatul.
Or, in the vernacular:

"One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them.
One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them."

So the author of the key part of the verse was Sauron himself. Given that it is an integral part of the verse, I would assume that Sauron wrote the whole thing, as the incantation that summarised the power of the Ring.

As for when it became known, I seem to recall that he said the verse as he put the Ring on his finger for the first time, which is when the Elven Smiths of Eregion knew that they had been betrayed. Can't find a cite for that just at the moment.

well he's back
05-02-2008, 04:08 PM
My answer to the OP: Aragorn was strong enough not to be tempted by the ring for the short period of time he was around it. Remember - he let Frodo go (essentially so in the book; more directly in the film), thus distancing himself from it. And in the last council after the battle for Minas Tirith, it was mentioned (by somebody) that the temptation to use the ring against Sauron had been fortunately taken away. Meaning if it had been right there just then, Aragorn, Gandalf et al would have been tempted in such desperate circumstances.


And, briefly, besides making you invisible the ring will give you power over others, in proportion to your own power to wield it.

Lastly, I got the midichlorians joke (and I'm no Star Wars fan) - let us not deign to explain things in Middle Earth in this sort of way. horrors.

jsc1953
05-02-2008, 05:58 PM
Ash nazg durbatulûk, ash nazg gimbatul, ash nazg thrakatulûk agh burzum-ishi krimpatul..

Gasp. I just put my fingers in my ears (or eyes, this being a visual medium).

DSYoungEsq
05-02-2008, 08:01 PM
Yes, but did the windows darken as clouds suddenly rolled across your valley from out of no where? :p

Northern Piper
05-03-2008, 12:48 AM
found the cite I was looking for. It's also from the chapter on the Council of Elrond. Just after Gandalf quotes the passage from Isildur about the Ring, he says:When I read those words, my quest was ended. For the traced writing was indeed as Isildur guessed, in the tongue of Mordor and the servants of the Tower. And what was said therein was already known. For in the day that Sauron first put on the One, Celembrimbor, maker of the Three, was aware of him, and from afar he heard him speak these words, and so his evil purposes were revealed.So it was Sauron who composed the verse, and right from the beginning, what he had said "was already known."

eleanorigby
05-03-2008, 06:55 AM
The movies make a Tolkein lover schizophrenic. :eek:


Oh, I wouldn't say the movies do that, love.....







The Star Wars/Scientology thingy--(now that would be a great movie). Not to hijack my own thread, but wouldn't Lucas be compelled to give world-compliant explanations due to his "work" being science fiction? (or is is more space fantasy? I think it's crap, but I digress). Even in fantasy one cannot just let X or Y happen. There must be cohesion in whatever universe you're creating. (which is why I mock the Eagles so much--JRRT's, not the band, sillies!--they are just so very convenient yet strangely hard to find....

Koxinga
05-03-2008, 08:58 AM
IIRC, the eagles are more or less direct agents of God, acting at the direction of Manwe. So maybe they only show up at the most critical moments as it's only at those times that the gods feel a need to intervene. Also, isn't their intervention always associated with Gandalf, another emissary of the gods?

Laughing Lagomorph
05-03-2008, 09:16 AM
So what if the Balrog got it? Would he hand it over to Sauron?

I have pondered this question. I think the answer has to do with Sauron's nature.

First of all the Balrogs, like Gandalf, Saruman, and Sauron himself are Maia. Apparently the Moria Balrog at least is roughly equally powerful to Gandalf in his Grey incarnation, so less powerful than Sauron, but still very adept in spells and such. In addition the Balrogs are evil, so they would definitely be drawn to The Ring.

As noted above the Balrog would have no particular loyalty to Sauron, instead he used to work for Morgoth. So my guess is if things had gone badly for the Fellowship in Moria the Balrog would have claimed The Ring for his own. Presumably Sauron would be aware of this the instant it happened and would move to defeat the Balrog.

So now you have an extremely powerful, evil Maia wielding Sauron's Ring. It would take some time to learn its full powers but my guess is Sauron would be hard pressed to gain The Ring back from the Balrog.

Now the question is, would The Ring allow itself to be used against its true Master in this way? This is where Sauron's nature comes in.

The Ring was made by Sauron and contains much of his power, malice and cruelty. We also know that The Ring is deceptive just like Sauron, tempting people with visions of what they could gain, or seem to gain, if they claimed it.

In other words The Ring possesses pretty much all of Sauron's characteristics. Including treachery. The Ring betrays Isildur, and Gollum as well. So I think if it came down to it, The Ring would ditch Sauron himself and allow itself to be wielded by the Balrog, and in the end help the Balrog defeat Sauron. The Balrog would then become the new Dark Lord.

Northern Piper
05-03-2008, 09:47 AM
Yes, but did the windows darken as clouds suddenly rolled across your valley from out of no where? :p
No, but my computer screen flickered when I re-read my post... :eek:

DSYoungEsq
05-03-2008, 10:03 AM
found the cite I was looking for. It's also from the chapter on the Council of Elrond. Just after Gandalf quotes the passage from Isildur about the Ring, he says:So it was Sauron who composed the verse, and right from the beginning, what he had said "was already known."
No, all that proves is that he spoke the two lines about the One Ring. It's quite possible that the remaining bits of the poem are made up by the Elves, especially since it talks about the Dark Lord in the Land of Mordor, "where the shadows lie." Sauron isn't likely to be running around talking about his hometown that way. ;)

Wakinyan
05-03-2008, 10:04 AM
This (http://oakroadsystems.com/genl/ringfaq.htm#Q1-Powers) is from FAQ of the Rings (http://oakroadsystems.com/genl/ringfaq.htm). A most useful site.
Great resource. Thanks for posting.

smiling bandit
05-03-2008, 10:36 AM
I did want to come back and state that the Elves had no reason to think that the One Ring would actually corrupt its bearer. Even the lesser Rings were less intended for that than for making its wearers into wraith minions. It seems likely that Saruman, who apparently discovered and studied the rings a lot probably figured out what Sauron actually had done. I don't think the Elves realized at any points that the One Ring actually was a part of Sauron's spirit and will and malice.

Moreover, I think Isildur could have resisted the Ring's influence long enough to get it to Mt. Doom*. That he didn't even try or consider the action in as much as we know tells me the Elves wanted it destroyed for their own reasons, so no one else could ever even attempt to dominate their rings.

*It's implied this wouldn't much matter. I think JRRt says at one point that Sauron didnt think that anyone (short of a Valar) could actually have deliberately thrown it in Mt. Doom, not right in Morder and with the Ring's full power bent on preserving itself.

Yumblie
05-03-2008, 01:44 PM
Although the movie's Faramir sequence may have dragged on a bit, I'm still not too keen on the idea of some men just being immune to the ring's influence. I think it denigrates the role of the hobbits in the story. The way the ring seems to work is that it brings out and amplifies the wearer's worst qualities. The elves are wise and seem to know what's best for everyone, so one with the ring would become a tyrannical ruler. Dwarves love mining and treasure hunting, so naturally the ring would make them overly zealous and greedy. Men are courageous and charismatic, so a man with the ring would be able to lead groups of people to do their bidding.

Hobbits on the other hand, desire nothing more than eating 11 meals a day under a tree or in front of the fire. The ring has less of an effect on a hobbit because hobbits naturally don't have very high aspirations. And in all the history of Middle Earth, this quality made it so they didn't have any significant impact on the world, so that many people had never even heard of a hobbit. But suddenly a great peril falls over the world that no one is equipped to deal with. Enter the hobbits, who for the first time will influence the history of the world.

Note that this is just the impression I got from the books and movies, and I'm not familiar with the whole back story or the Silmarillion.

eleanorigby
05-03-2008, 02:03 PM
Yumblie, I think you're mostly right and that is why I was appalled that PJ left the Scouring of the Shire out of the films. It is a coming of age for the hobbits.

I don't agree that the elves know what's best for everyone. The elves know what's best for the elves. They're just more artistic and mystical about it--the dwarves just get in your face and grab.



The more I think about it, the odder it is that Aragorn wasn't tempted at all. If he was impervious to the ring, why not strike sooner against Sauron? Why wander and stride around for however long?

sturmhauke
05-03-2008, 05:40 PM
Boy, I dunno. Now, Miranda Otto and the chance to be a viking horseman is an easy choice.
Word. I always liked Eowyn better than Arwen. Here's how it would go if Aragorn had taken the Shield Maidenhead:

Aragorn: "Hey babe, I'm gonna go kill some orcs, be back in a few days."
Eowyn: "Yeah right, I'm going with you." She grabs a sword.
Aragorn: "Dammit, are you gonna show me up in front of the guys again?" He rolls his eyes in an exaggerated fashion. "Gimli is still going on about how you punked the Witch-King."
Eowyn: "Oh quit your whining, old man. Race ya!" She grins and dashes off to the stables. Aragorn scrambles to catch up.
IIRC, the eagles are more or less direct agents of God, acting at the direction of Manwe. So maybe they only show up at the most critical moments as it's only at those times that the gods feel a need to intervene. Also, isn't their intervention always associated with Gandalf, another emissary of the gods?
In other words, they really are dei ex machinis in the classical sense.

Tapiotar
05-03-2008, 06:26 PM
Someday I will finish reading the books; I just can't stand Tolkien's verbosity.[/QUOTE]

Verbosity? Tolkien didn't write nearly enough words!

Tapiotar
05-03-2008, 06:42 PM
'kay, eleanor rigby. I see the Boromir/Faramir thing in terms of a pair of brothers I knew in high school

Boromir, the older brother, is the star athlete on the small town high school football team, gets an exaggerated opinion of himself, wants to make the world safe for democracy and will use any means available 'cause he's so dang sure that he's RIGHT. His force will win the day!
Because his ego is so effing big, he thinks he can can rule the ring. He doesn't see his own weaknesses.

Faramir, the younger brother, somewhat more effeminate (he reads, for goshsake, and thinks! and doesn't just major in swordsmanship. His ego hasn't been pandered to and plumped up since he was a wee one, swaggering and beating up the weaker ones on the playground. So he knows he can't handle the Ring, and lets it go.

(Faramir marries Eowyn. Later realizes that she is more of a man than he is. He comes out and goes to get it on with the beauteous Legolas, a switch-hitter. Eowyn finds someone, I'm not quite sure who, who is more of a match for her.)

Koxinga
05-03-2008, 06:48 PM
(Faramir marries Eowyn. Later realizes that she is more of a man than he is. He comes out and goes to get it on with the beauteous Legolas, a switch-hitter. Eowyn finds someone, I'm not quite sure who, who is more of a match for her.)

I always wondered if Jodie Foster could have found a role in the LoTR films.

Knorf
05-03-2008, 06:52 PM
In other words, they really are dei ex machinis in the classical sense.
[about the eagles]
Yes, indeed. There's some considerable back story regarding the eagles and their uncanny ability to help important people out of scrapes.

Here's a good artcile (http://encyclopedia-of-arda.com/e/eagles.html) for people who want to read more about them (without, say, reading the Silmarillion themselves.)

smiling bandit
05-03-2008, 07:47 PM
In other words The Ring possesses pretty much all of Sauron's characteristics. Including treachery. The Ring betrays Isildur, and Gollum as well. So I think if it came down to it, The Ring would ditch Sauron himself and allow itself to be wielded by the Balrog, and in the end help the Balrog defeat Sauron. The Balrog would then become the new Dark Lord.

Actually, no. JRRT mentioned something about this himself.

Even without the Ring, Sauron was one mean mutha. And the yeah, the Ring was treacherous and all that, but it was still a living part of Sauron, more or less. I will not and cannot betray him. Now, a really, really powerful person could take it up and fight Sauron with it, and theoretically beat him down with it. Sauron would become a slave, or a shadow of a ghost, and the Ring would have a new Master. But that was unlikely to succeed. But this is not really a physical battle as such and the Balrog's size and strength would mean nothing.

A Balrog? Maybe. Maybe. Even among the wise, though, none of them would really be expected to win, except Gandalf. Partly because he is originally such a good person but of course also because he was a wise and powerful Maiar, he could probably have won. But even a Balrog would likely have lost this battle. They were lesser spirits than Sauron from the start of their evil reign, and Sauron would have a big advantage in his seat of power with the Ring right there.

For a related mater, see how Aragorn was able to force Sauron out of the Palantir. The Palantir was rightfully Aragorn's item, and he literally had an advantage in the fight because he was in the right. The orb responded to his claims. However, the Ring was Sauron, and anyone else would face an uphill battle trying to master it.

Likewise, the Balrog would probably have moved too fast. Almost anyone, if they were willful enough, could have tried to master the Ring over years and centuries or whatnot. Gollum got nowhere with it because his will was not fundamentally given to controlling others. OTOH, someone like Aragorn or Saruman was used to rulership and getting their way, and would find the Ring increased that authority.

Koxinga
05-03-2008, 07:54 PM
I will not and cannot betray him.

:eek:

smiling bandit
05-03-2008, 08:36 PM
:eek:

:smack:

Don't worry: My evil is less evil than my spelling is god.

:D

eleanorigby
05-03-2008, 10:04 PM
'kay, eleanor rigby. I see the Boromir/Faramir thing in terms of a pair of brothers I knew in high school

Boromir, the older brother, is the star athlete on the small town high school football team, gets an exaggerated opinion of himself, wants to make the world safe for democracy and will use any means available 'cause he's so dang sure that he's RIGHT. His force will win the day!
Because his ego is so effing big, he thinks he can can rule the ring. He doesn't see his own weaknesses.

Faramir, the younger brother, somewhat more effeminate (he reads, for goshsake, and thinks! and doesn't just major in swordsmanship. His ego hasn't been pandered to and plumped up since he was a wee one, swaggering and beating up the weaker ones on the playground. So he knows he can't handle the Ring, and lets it go.

(Faramir marries Eowyn. Later realizes that she is more of a man than he is. He comes out and goes to get it on with the beauteous Legolas, a switch-hitter. Eowyn finds someone, I'm not quite sure who, who is more of a match for her.)


No, no, no! Boromir is mensch but in a different way from Aragorn. The best scene in the film (besides the death scene) is when B says to A that he would make it right for his father etc. I don't see him as an arrogant football prick/jock.

Faramir is a Renaissance man. Eowyn is not a closeted butch, either!
:eek:

And Legolas is NOT a switch hitter! :mad:

Koxinga
05-03-2008, 10:12 PM
And Legolas is NOT a switch hitter! :mad:

Besides, Sam would kill him if he tried anything.

eleanorigby
05-03-2008, 10:29 PM
Besides, Sam would kill him if he tried anything.


Too right, and Sam and Frodo have a friendship--unlike today's sexually obsessed times (although come to think of it, Tolkien's times were pretty damned sexually obsessed/repressed, but I digress) men back in the day could and did have loving friendships that were based on respect and honor etc. Either that or 2 entire generations were so tightly closeted that they might was well have been corseted.
:eek:



And Jodie Foster would have made a bitchin' elf! I can so see her in Lothlorien. I bet she'd be good at archery.

sturmhauke
05-04-2008, 01:37 AM
Eowyn is not a closeted butch, either!
Well, no, but she's a total tomboy. She probably could kick Faramir's ass if it came down to it.

What Exit?
05-04-2008, 10:45 AM
Well, no, but she's a total tomboy. She probably could kick Faramir's ass if it came down to it.
Actually they are a good match. While not as big as Boromir, Faramir was a tall man, still taller than the tall Éowyn. He was a great captain that could lead man and horse in organized retreat even under the literal shadow of the Witch-King. In Faramir, Éowyn found the man closest to Aragorn in temperament and skills. She settled for second best and she had no chance against one of the three most beautiful women in the history of Middle Earth.

Faramir would hold his own and then some if it came to it. He was more akin in temperament to the Kings of old than most any man of the day. Skilled in war, not reckless and learned in lore and history, he would have made a good ruling steward and went on to be a great Prince.

Besides Lady Éowyn gave up the martial arts to study healing, if I remember correctly. No more a shield-maiden, but now that highest of pursuits, a healer of hurts.

ETA I found it and btw it is my bolding:
"I stand in Minas Anor, the Tower of the Sun, and behold the Shadow has departed! I will be a shieldmaiden no longer, nor vie with the great Riders, nor take joy only in the songs of slaying. I will be a healer, and love all things that grow and are not barren. No longer do I desire to be a queen."
The Return of the King: "The Steward and the King," p. 243
Jim

eleanorigby
05-04-2008, 12:30 PM
Actually they are a good match. While not as big as Boromir, Faramir was a tall man, still taller than the tall Éowyn. He was a great captain that could lead man and horse in organized retreat even under the literal shadow of the Witch-King.

I have always appreciated how Tolkien could show different kinds of strengths.

In Faramir, Éowyn found the man closest to Aragorn in temperament and skills. She settled for second best and she had no chance against one of the three most beautiful women in the history of Middle Earth.

Hold up there, Skippy... In my take of it (which is the only valid one, so make note of that, eh?) Aragorn has a bit of "what might have been" re Eowyn. He is attracted to her and they would have made a great couple but for that tainted elvish love stuff*. She is worthy of him, although he does stand higher. Plus, she was very fair--snow over sun or some such poetry.


Besides Lady Éowyn gave up the martial arts to study healing, if I remember correctly. No more a shield-maiden, but now that highest of pursuits, a healer of hurts.



Why, yes, said the nurse smug but humble. :D ;)




*I am not a huge fan of Arwen. It seems to me all she is is beautiful--she is a cardboard character--some pedestaled ideal that haunts Aragorn. It's a bit better in the films(partly because they change the story line), although, again, there is no passion (by that I mean more than sex). I see Viggo/Aragorn longing for Arwen/Liv and I see that they love one another, but I see no chemistry, no spark--except at the end with the kiss. Whether this is because Aragorn basically had to jump through hoops of Elrond's making to get his "prize" or because he kept her a treasured thing because of his deep respect for elves, I don't know. I do know that it is irksome for any woman to be cherished-something Tolkien was ignorant of.

Elendil's Heir
05-04-2008, 12:40 PM
...(Faramir marries Eowyn. Later realizes that she is more of a man than he is. He comes out and goes to get it on with the beauteous Legolas, a switch-hitter. Eowyn finds someone, I'm not quite sure who, who is more of a match for her.)

The mind reels. The Professor spins.

What Exit?
05-04-2008, 01:08 PM
Hold up there, Skippy... In my take of it (which is the only valid one, so make note of that, eh?) Aragorn has a bit of "what might have been" re Eowyn. He is attracted to her and they would have made a great couple but for that tainted elvish love stuff*. She is worthy of him, although he does stand higher. Plus, she was very fair--snow over sun or some such poetry.
Aragorn had only pity for Éowyn, he recognized she was fair, but his heart was lost long ago and apparently he was made of sterner stuff than any other man. Aragorn was an Uber-Hero. Loyal and strong willed beyond normal humans. He had no actual attraction for her, as his heart was pure. She was also somewhat shallow, she saw in him only the Heir of Elendil and the great Warrior, and she has a quick and hard crush. Though she was only 24 and of the house of the King, her years were tough, tending a man she loved as a father who was under the sway of an evil deceiver that she needed to fend off. The one thing I am amazed at is that she herself did not slay Wormtounge in the years before Gandalf showed up. But then it was hinted at that she too fell under the sway of Saruman’s spells as delivered by Wormtounge. Only Éomer seem to mostly ignore them, but he seemed a simpler man. He was a brave and fearless Captain but not given to deep thoughts of introspection. He was more like Boromir.
Why, yes, said the nurse smug but humble. :D ;)
I thought you would like that part. It was also for QTM and my sisters and niece.
*I am not a huge fan of Arwen. It seems to me all she is is beautiful--she is a cardboard character--some pedestaled ideal that haunts Aragorn. It's a bit better in the films(partly because they change the story line), although, again, there is no passion (by that I mean more than sex). I see Viggo/Aragorn longing for Arwen/Liv and I see that they love one another, but I see no chemistry, no spark--except at the end with the kiss. Whether this is because Aragorn basically had to jump through hoops of Elrond's making to get his "prize" or because he kept her a treasured thing because of his deep respect for elves, I don't know. I do know that it is irksome for any woman to be cherished-something Tolkien was ignorant of.
Tolkien comes from another generation and is writing of a time closer to the ideals of the chivalrous age. Arwen is more of a prize then a character, but you see more of her in Appendix A, (V) "Here Follows a Part of The Tale of Aragorn and Arwen." Her beauty was unearthly, whereas Éowyn was but a great beauty by human standards. Even Éomer found the Queen Arwen to be more beautiful than Galadriel, who from what I can tell was the third most beautiful of the women of Middle Earth. (I am not counting Melian, Luthien's Mother, as she was a Maia, a minor goddess or Angel as it was.)

Additionally, Aragorn had the grace of a longer life than any human in many generations. He was hail and hardy to the end at an age of 210. At best Éowyn would live to see 100 years and that would be a lot. So in Arwen, Aragorn also won for the humans a renew lineage in their Kings. She would bring long life and thus hopefully stability and wisdom to the renewed line of Kings starting with King Eldarion Telcontar (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eldarion).

Jim

DSYoungEsq
05-04-2008, 02:16 PM
No, no, no! Boromir is mensch but in a different way from Aragorn. The best scene in the film (besides the death scene) is when B says to A that he would make it right for his father etc. I don't see him as an arrogant football prick/jock.
First of all, if you are going to make the movie representations your basis of discussion, you and I are gonna end up not talking much about it because the movie is nothing but an attempt at translation: the books, and only the books, are the real deal! :p

Boromir isn't arrogant in the sense you are thinking: a jerk who won't listen to anyone and thinks he's the second coming sense. He's arrogant in the sense of being cocksure. Gondor is the bulwark of Middle-Earth, and civilization in the West depends upon its survival. The Stewards are the faithful, Valar-selected guardians of that bulwark. What man can do, Boromir can do, just as his father before him, and his father, and so forth, have done. There is no need to think of failure because there is no point: if Gondor fails, no one else will stand. Destiny, if you will, will work through Denethor, and after him through his son, Boromir the Brave. So if you have this Ring of Power, this weapon of might, let Denethor, or if not Denethor, his lawful heir, Boromir, use it to do what must be done!!

Faramir, on the other hand, is the younger brother who simultaneously worships his older brother, and is jealous of his favored status with their father. Daddy doesn't see Faramir's intelligence as a strength, but, rather, as a weakness, for it leads to doubt, and to wavering of purpose. Denethor has mastered his intellectual aspects by subjugating them to his will of purpose. But he knows that his younger son can be corrupted from the path of needful acts by his curiosity, and his sense of "fair play." So he favors the less-intelligent, but completely brave son, Boromir. Faramir resents that, but can't hold it against Boromir, because at the same time, he wants to be just as brave, just as steadfast.

The Denethor-Boromir-Faramir triangle is one of the great parts of the books. When I was 13 and reading them for the first time, I was impatient with all the relationship crap. As an adult, I love it. It is much more engaging than the rather insipid attempt at a love story that the Aragorn-Arwen storyline presents. :o

DSYoungEsq
05-04-2008, 02:24 PM
It should be noted that Aragorn spent the better part of 50 years working to win Arwen Undomiel's hand in marriage. He had been to the edges of Mordor itself as part of that quest (possibly even within Mordor at some point, IIRC). It was his all-consuming dream.

In light of that, I think we can safely say he had no real interest in Eowyn as a love-match. He simply pitied her for the fact she was clearly seeing him as having a potential that way when he could not, would not ever respond.

To her credit, Eowyn finally realizes the difference and sees that Faramir is plenty of man for her (especially with that wonderfully kinky menage-a-trois concpet Faramir floats out about Legolas, or maybe one of the halflings (think about it, they only stand waist high :D ))

mbh
05-04-2008, 02:49 PM
by DSYoungEsq
(think about it, they only stand waist high)
Yeah, but they have round heads. Where are you going to set your beer?

Colibri
05-04-2008, 03:32 PM
Eowyn finds someone, I'm not quite sure who, who is more of a match for her.)

I'm thinking she ends up doing a Xena/Gabrielle thing with Goldberry.

smiling bandit
05-04-2008, 03:41 PM
Boromir isn't arrogant in the sense you are thinking: a jerk who won't listen to anyone and thinks he's the second coming sense. He's arrogant in the sense of being cocksure. Gondor is the bulwark of Middle-Earth, and civilization in the West depends upon its survival.

I think it's more complicated than that. Boromir really isn't very confidant, but he's spent his entire life trying to battle the Shadow (and Denethor the same). There's not really any victories there, and they are constantly pushed back and back and back. Boromir is confidant and martial because he has to be to get through the day. Denethor is under huge pressure (which eventually breaks him) and he's only holding on because Boromir is able to take some of the burden.

sturmhauke
05-04-2008, 04:48 PM
*I am not a huge fan of Arwen. It seems to me all she is is beautiful--she is a cardboard character--some pedestaled ideal that haunts Aragorn.
I agree. Arwen's too busy standing around being all statuesque and mystical and shit to be, you know, interesting.

eleanorigby
05-05-2008, 12:01 AM
Gah. I'm not going to answer everyone one by one--it's late and I'm tired.

STOP with the pity, already! I don't think Aragon pities Eowyn. I think he sees in her great potential and great sadness. If he does pity her, it is for her benighted mis-allied energies. She is so bent on valor in conquest and all things heroic(and such is her culture, too), she doesn't see that just facing life day to day is heroic enough. I don't think Aragorn pities her for her infatuation with him. He knows she's worthy and good and pure of mind; her character is as fine as his, but it's misdirected. It sounds anti-feminist, but she is questing in the wrong arena for honor. She is much younger in years than Aragorn, and so has this need to believe in pure things and honorable things. Aragorn, having been around the block a bit, knows that her naivety is what drives her infatuation for him.

IMO, Aragorn sees in her a companion, but you all are right in that his heart is claimed by Arwen (who is starting to be Yoko in my head, I swear!*). One of the reasons I respect Tolkien as much as I do is for Eowyn. In an era that emphasized docility and compliance in females, Eowyn kicked ass and was not made to seem asexual or unwomanly. She uses her great energies for good in the end--and in the more noble art of curing and healing, not hurting and destroying. I think Aragorn admires her fortitude and her character.


It's the difference between a guy being nice to a girl whom he knows has a crush on him and a guy just taking the admiration for granted. Does that make sense? If any of you have ever been lucky to have been the focus of a crush--what did you do? Laugh about it to your friends? Use the girl for sex? Or were you flattered and at the same time dismayed that you couldn't return the feelings and concerned that you might inadvertently hurt your crushee? I refuse to believe that guys who like such romantic folderol as LOTR would do the mean guy thing.

Aragorn cannot "lead her on" (and to his credit, he wouldn't), but he also (both book and film)does not take her idolization as his due. So, he treats her with respect and honors her feelings. This is huge, gentlemen, huge. In some ways, Eowyn is the most interesting of all Tolkien's characters, because she is such an oddity. She is modern, even by today's standards. She holds her own. She takes her gifts and makes a life for herself.

Arwen, on the other hand, not so much. I am too modern myself to feel much admiration for her. Beauty, even world class beauty, is no longer enough. She needs to be able to do something--hell, even the princesses in the fairy tales all did something (usually stray into trouble, Arwen doesn't even do that). I'm not all that sure that Arwen is the best choice for Aragorn. Sometimes I long for a long forgotten elf to ride out of Mirkwood and stumble into Aragorn. An elf who has had to live by her wits and skills, not some dying swan of a noble daughter who looks good in velvet. Arwen is for 10 year olds who want to idealize and romanticize women, IMO. She's as ephemeral as a soap bubble. I also get impatient with Aragorn working his ass off for his future FIL's approval. (it works in the legend and it works because they're mythic characters, which was Tolkien's intent, but I still get impatient with it).




*just kidding.

Elendil's Heir
05-05-2008, 12:35 AM
Although pity was not Aragorn's only feeling towards Eowyn, it was an important one:

"...Few other griefs amid the ill chances of this world have more bitterness and shame for a man's heart than to behold the love of a lady so fair and brave that cannot be returned. Sorrow and pity have followed me ever since I left [Eowyn] desperate in Dunharrow and rode to the Paths of the Dead; and no fear upon that way was so present as the fear for what might befall her...." - Aragorn to Eomer, "The Houses of Healing," ROTK, p. 849 (emphasis added)

"I wished to be loved by another," she answered. "But I desire no man's pity."
"That I know," he said. "You desired to have the love of the Lord Aragorn.... But when he gave you only understanding and pity, then you desired to have nothing, unless a brave death in battle.... Do not scorn pity that is the gift of a gentle heart, Eowyn! But I do not offer you my pity.... I love you...." - Eowyn to Faramir, "The Steward and the King," ROTK, p. 943 (emphasis added)

eleanorigby
05-05-2008, 12:47 AM
Oh, god. Is this like when fundies start arguing about the Bible and they start throwing chapter and verse at one another? (it's called something--doing that, I forget what the term is) :rolleyes:

Ok, so it says pity. I don't care what it says. <goes off to look in dictionary>

Ok, so definition number 5 or so likens pity to compassion. That'll I buy. I don't buy that Aragorn feels sorry for Eowyn or has mercy on her or looks down on her. He may say those words, but his actions show that he more than pities her. I think his pity is the gift of the gentle heart, which is the point I made before I got my wrist slapped by The Heir. <rolls eyes at Elendil's Heir and snorts*>

Is this so hard to accept--that Aragorn may see Eowyn fully and turn aside due to his love for Arwen? <bangs head against desk>




*I'm teasing you, btw.

Elendil's Heir
05-05-2008, 01:09 AM
Well, JRRT's work isn't Holy Writ (forgive me, QtM and What Exit?!), but if we're going to discuss what his characters were feeling for each other, I know of no better source. :dubious:

I agree that Aragorn's pity (an ancient word that unfortunately has of late acquired the taint of condescension) was borne of compassion. He fully appreciated Eowyn's many qualities but already loved another. He did not scorn her, he did not sneer at her, he did not think less of her, but simply could not reciprocate her love. We agree more than we disagree here, I think, but your blanket statement that "I don't think Aragorn pities Eowyn" is simply at odds with the text.

And I would never slap your wrist, or any other part of you, even if you asked me to, eleanorigby. My own lady, noble, fair and wise, wouldn't approve. :D

What Exit?
05-05-2008, 08:29 AM
Just to confirm the work that Elendil's Heir already did, when Tolkien uses the word pity, he does mean compassion.

As to Arwen, we learn little of her, but don't underestimate her too much. She is a powerful person in her own right. She prepared a banner for Aragorn in readiness for the battle that was to come. She was foresighted enough to send it south with the Rangers. This banner, I think could be considered magical in nature.

It is never stated, but I think we can fairly conclude her education was off the scale of any others of the day. She learned in both the house of Elrond and in Lothlorien under her Grandmother Galadriel. She was without question remote compared to the earthy Éowyn, but we learned little of Arwen good or bad.
Sadly she is not a character as much as a plot device and an ideal.

Elendil's Heir
05-05-2008, 11:20 AM
Oh, god. Is this like when fundies start arguing about the Bible and they start throwing chapter and verse at one another? (it's called something--doing that, I forget what the term is) :rolleyes: ....

You probably mean "prooftexting" or "quote mining."

DSYoungEsq
05-05-2008, 01:13 PM
Fact checking? :p


<ducking and running>

Malacandra
05-05-2008, 06:35 PM
Oh, god. Is this like when fundies start arguing about the Bible and they start throwing chapter and verse at one another? (it's called something--doing that, I forget what the term is) :rolleyes:

Ok, so it says pity. I don't care what it says. <goes off to look in dictionary>

Ok, so definition number 5 or so likens pity to compassion. That'll I buy. I don't buy that Aragorn feels sorry for Eowyn or has mercy on her or looks down on her. He may say those words, but his actions show that he more than pities her. I think his pity is the gift of the gentle heart, which is the point I made before I got my wrist slapped by The Heir. <rolls eyes at Elendil's Heir and snorts*>

Is this so hard to accept--that Aragorn may see Eowyn fully and turn aside due to his love for Arwen? <bangs head against desk>




*I'm teasing you, btw.
Isn't it just so galling when people clutter up an argument by harping on the facts? :p

eleanorigby
05-05-2008, 08:54 PM
I came in here earlier to refute and castigate you all, but I couldn't get the damned thing to load. Stoopit hamsters.

Prooftexting it is--and I'm in over my head here. I must bow to others' more in-depth knowledge of the actual text, but I alone know what Tolkien REALLY meant.
:D


And I hate facts in an argument--they're useless. :p But we're not having an argument. You all are being a bit silly, but you'll come 'round-- Elendil's Heir has and I can be patient with the rest of you. ;)


PS-I thought EH (the poster) was a girl. Oops....

Elendil's Heir
05-05-2008, 09:20 PM
...PS-I thought EH (the poster) was a girl. Oops....

A surprisingly common, if inexplicable, mistake. Then I'd be Elendil's Heiress.

Koxinga
05-05-2008, 10:23 PM
A surprisingly common, if inexplicable, mistake. Then I'd be Elendil's Heiress.

Sounds like a madcap 30s comedy.

Qadgop the Mercotan
05-05-2008, 10:47 PM
Sounds like a madcap 30s comedy.
No, that's just so second age! Already been done, in "The Mariner's Wife"! :D

eleanorigby
05-06-2008, 12:24 PM
A surprisingly common, if inexplicable, mistake. Then I'd be Elendil's Heiress.


True enough. I think it's because Elendil just doesn't sound all that masculine to me.

<punches EH in the arm; spits and says, "yo"> (does that help?)
:)

Elendil's Heir
05-06-2008, 04:00 PM
<rubbing my arm in surprise>

Um... yeah! Thanks!

Right back 'atcha.

eleanorigby
05-06-2008, 06:51 PM
Didn't your mother teach you not to hit girls? :eek:


Heh.

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