The Council of Elrond

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Kirinki54 09/Feb/2006 at 01:38 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

People have expressed many opinions about chapter 2 ‘The Council of Elrond’ of The Fellowship of the Ring. Not all are positive. It seems that the structure of roughly 20 pages of almost pure dialogue is not ‘supposed’ to work in terms of narrative pace, literary dramaturgy, and so on. Or to put it bluntly: plain and simple boring.

 

Well, I am not of that opinion. Ever since I first read the LotR (and there is a 35th Anniversary coming up sometime in April), ‘The Council of Elrond’ (CE) has been one of my favourite chapter. Probably the most interesting chapter. Also far from boring; in my opinion riveting! I will give you the reasons but please tell me if you think otherwise.

 

The splendid language is evident also in CE, but that is not what makes it unique; there are so many other beautiful passages in other chapters.

 

- Tolkien wrote (in Letter 131) about Elrond as sort of a pivotal character, appearing in all stories, and nexus figure for the fates of Elves and Men. Elrond certainly is just that in CE. But, especially in CE, also Imladris as place functions as a nexus location for the mythology in LotR and what preceded the events unfolding there.

 

- Some of the milieus earlier only hinted at in LotR are given a deeper exploration. Many new lands, places and peoples are introduced: Rohan, Gondor and others. Sometimes in tantalizing glimpses, sometimes a tad more thorough.

 

- History and timelines cross-road in the tales of the different characters, building a set-up for the background of the problems of Middle-earth and for the constraints and possibilities that lie ahead.

 

- Characters from all races are introduced, and we gain insight into their natures and their roles in the past as well as in the War of the Ring and beyond.

 

- Explanations abound, old tidings and new developments knitted together to form the fabric on which later events will be stitched onto later in the narrative.

 

- There is even foreshadowing, as for example the budding insights we get from Boromir´s words concerning how to handle the Ring, hinting at later complications.

 

- Many options are thoroughly explored, options scrutinized and discarded, until the finally the only (‘foolish’ but logical) course of action emerges. When the Company later sets out, the reader can follow them without hesitation despite the complex situation.

 

Tolkien even managed, after all this serious business, to give the finale of the chapter a decidedly comical and Hobbitish twist with Sam suddenly appearing with his typical remarks.

 

Well, there is writing for you! Or so I think. What do you think about CE?

 

Kirinki54 09/Feb/2006 at 01:38 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

People have expressed many opinions about chapter 2 ‘The Council of Elrond’ of The Fellowship of the Ring. Not all are positive. It seems that the structure of roughly 20 pages of almost pure dialogue is not ‘supposed’ to work in terms of narrative pace, literary dramaturgy, and so on. Or to put it bluntly: plain and simple boring.

 

Well, I am not of that opinion. Ever since I first read the LotR (and there is a 35th Anniversary coming up sometime in April), ‘The Council of Elrond’ (CE) has been one of my favourite chapter. Probably the most interesting chapter. Also far from boring; in my opinion riveting! I will give you the reasons but please tell me if you think otherwise.

 

The splendid language is evident also in CE, but that is not what makes it unique; there are so many other beautiful passages in other chapters.

 

- Tolkien wrote (in Letter 131) about Elrond as sort of a pivotal character, appearing in all stories, and nexus figure for the fates of Elves and Men. Elrond certainly is just that in CE. But, especially in CE, also Imladris as place functions as a nexus location for the mythology in LotR and what preceded the events unfolding there.

 

- Some of the milieus earlier only hinted at in LotR are given a deeper exploration. Many new lands, places and peoples are introduced: Rohan, Gondor and others. Sometimes in tantalizing glimpses, sometimes a tad more thorough.

 

- History and timelines cross-road in the tales of the different characters, building a set-up for the background of the problems of Middle-earth and for the constraints and possibilities that lie ahead.

 

- Characters from all races are introduced, and we gain insight into their natures and their roles in the past as well as in the War of the Ring and beyond.

 

- Explanations abound, old tidings and new developments knitted together to form the fabric on which later events will be stitched onto later in the narrative.

 

- There is even foreshadowing, as for example the budding insights we get from Boromir´s words concerning how to handle the Ring, hinting at later complications.

 

- Many options are thoroughly explored, options scrutinized and discarded, until the finally the only (‘foolish’ but logical) course of action emerges. When the Company later sets out, the reader can follow them without hesitation despite the complex situation.

 

Tolkien even managed, after all this serious business, to give the finale of the chapter a decidedly comical and Hobbitish twist with Sam suddenly appearing with his typical remarks.

 

Well, there is writing for you! Or so I think. What do you think about CE?

 

geordie 09/Feb/2006 at 02:03 PM
Hugo Bracegirdle Points: 20570 Posts: 14087 Joined: 06/Mar/2005
I agree that The Council of Elrond is one of the most important chapters in the book; I don’t agree that it is boring.

By the way, where did you hear that? If you’re referring to the spiel on the EE DVD documentary; beware: that seems to me to be a careful bit of editing on the part of PJ, to make the likes of Tom Shippey and Jude Fisher [aka Jane Johnson] appear to wholeheartedly agree with PJ’s views of the chapter. And how PJ and la Boyens cut thru the crap and ’improved’ that part of the book! [needless to say I think PJ’s point of view is a load of dingo’s kidneys].

CE is, as I say, one of the most important parts of LotR; and Shippey tells us what he thinks of it in one of his books; can’t remember which one right now. Basically, he thinks it’s a tour de force, introducing many new characters and situations, and the reader does’nt get lost. A great piece of writing, in my opinion.

By the way; what’s this 35th anniversary of which you speak?
geordie 09/Feb/2006 at 02:03 PM
Hugo Bracegirdle Points: 20570 Posts: 14087 Joined: 06/Mar/2005
I agree that The Council of Elrond is one of the most important chapters in the book; I don’t agree that it is boring.

By the way, where did you hear that? If you’re referring to the spiel on the EE DVD documentary; beware: that seems to me to be a careful bit of editing on the part of PJ, to make the likes of Tom Shippey and Jude Fisher [aka Jane Johnson] appear to wholeheartedly agree with PJ’s views of the chapter. And how PJ and la Boyens cut thru the crap and ’improved’ that part of the book! [needless to say I think PJ’s point of view is a load of dingo’s kidneys].

CE is, as I say, one of the most important parts of LotR; and Shippey tells us what he thinks of it in one of his books; can’t remember which one right now. Basically, he thinks it’s a tour de force, introducing many new characters and situations, and the reader does’nt get lost. A great piece of writing, in my opinion.

By the way; what’s this 35th anniversary of which you speak?
Reynardine 09/Feb/2006 at 02:05 PM
Soldier of Mordor Points: 1338 Posts: 1090 Joined: 01/Sep/2005
I completely agree with you, Kirinki, and The Council of Elrond has always been one of my favorite chapters as well. For those of us that are infatuated with the lore and history of Arda, the CE is a veritable treasure trove of interesting glimpses into the past. I have always been particularly intrigued by Gandalf’s reflections on Saruman’s treachery. Saruman is a wonderful character and his speeches in this chapter (and throughout the trilogy) exude charisma and evil.
For some, however, I could see how the CE could be boring, or an informational overload. I think one must be, like many of us, fascinated by M-E’s history to truly appreciate the chapter.
Reynardine 09/Feb/2006 at 02:05 PM
Soldier of Mordor Points: 1338 Posts: 1090 Joined: 01/Sep/2005
I completely agree with you, Kirinki, and The Council of Elrond has always been one of my favorite chapters as well. For those of us that are infatuated with the lore and history of Arda, the CE is a veritable treasure trove of interesting glimpses into the past. I have always been particularly intrigued by Gandalf’s reflections on Saruman’s treachery. Saruman is a wonderful character and his speeches in this chapter (and throughout the trilogy) exude charisma and evil.
For some, however, I could see how the CE could be boring, or an informational overload. I think one must be, like many of us, fascinated by M-E’s history to truly appreciate the chapter.
Oin 09/Feb/2006 at 05:02 PM
Architect of Erebor Points: 11372 Posts: 8807 Joined: 14/Feb/2004
The first few times I read LotR I admit, I was bored stiff by the Council of Elrond chapter. It is by far the longest of the chapters in the entire three volumes (Treebeard in TTT does come relatively close though), and it is essentially just a long recounting of 6,000 years or so of history.

However, once you actually read it and understand it - it is actually a great wealth of information. As you said in the first post, there are many things which are mentioned here in depth seen nowhere else. I think, however, that it is considered boring by many people because it suffers from a main criticism that the rest of FotR suffers from: not enough action. While TTT and RotK have a lot of action and plot progress, the first half or so of FotR is relatively slow, and the Council of Elrond is usually seen to continue this theme. I don’t agree with this, but I know many people who feel this way.
Oin 09/Feb/2006 at 05:02 PM
Architect of Erebor Points: 11372 Posts: 8807 Joined: 14/Feb/2004
The first few times I read LotR I admit, I was bored stiff by the Council of Elrond chapter. It is by far the longest of the chapters in the entire three volumes (Treebeard in TTT does come relatively close though), and it is essentially just a long recounting of 6,000 years or so of history.

However, once you actually read it and understand it - it is actually a great wealth of information. As you said in the first post, there are many things which are mentioned here in depth seen nowhere else. I think, however, that it is considered boring by many people because it suffers from a main criticism that the rest of FotR suffers from: not enough action. While TTT and RotK have a lot of action and plot progress, the first half or so of FotR is relatively slow, and the Council of Elrond is usually seen to continue this theme. I don’t agree with this, but I know many people who feel this way.
Herewulf 09/Feb/2006 at 06:23 PM
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Kirinki54 - Couldn’t agree with you more. Whenever I desire just a quick read of a chapter or section, the C of E is definitely one of the Top 5 that I always read:

1) The Voice of Saruman - tremendous battle of wits between Saruman and Gandalf. The prose is awesome. And interesting that I just read in The Letters of JRRT that Tolkien rewrote this chapter more than any other (mostly due to the urging of CS Lewis).

2) Council of Elrond - For all the reasons that Kirinki54 said prior.

3) The Ride of the Rohirrim - "Horns Horns Horns...."

4) The Battle of the Pelennor Fields - Tremendous victory snatched from the jaws of defeat. The Rohirrim and Aragorn show up to save the day.

5) Land of Shadow and Mount Doom - Frodo and Sam’s grinding struggle through Mordor.

Herewulf 09/Feb/2006 at 06:23 PM
Horse-groom of the Mark Points: 368 Posts: 122 Joined: 26/Feb/2008

Kirinki54 - Couldn’t agree with you more. Whenever I desire just a quick read of a chapter or section, the C of E is definitely one of the Top 5 that I always read:

1) The Voice of Saruman - tremendous battle of wits between Saruman and Gandalf. The prose is awesome. And interesting that I just read in The Letters of JRRT that Tolkien rewrote this chapter more than any other (mostly due to the urging of CS Lewis).

2) Council of Elrond - For all the reasons that Kirinki54 said prior.

3) The Ride of the Rohirrim - "Horns Horns Horns...."

4) The Battle of the Pelennor Fields - Tremendous victory snatched from the jaws of defeat. The Rohirrim and Aragorn show up to save the day.

5) Land of Shadow and Mount Doom - Frodo and Sam’s grinding struggle through Mordor.

Galandil 09/Feb/2006 at 06:27 PM
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When I first read "The Council of Elrond" chapter, I was confused because of all the dialogues and names I didn’t know, but I reread many times until it made some sense, then read the rest of the book, then read it again. At that point, it made a whole lot more sense. So yes at first, the chapter was a bit annoying, but I loved it dearly even as my (then young) brain muddled through it.

And honestly, other than those who saw the movies first, I haven’t once heard of someone complaining about the chapter. And really, if that is thought too difficult, I’d hate to hear the reaction to William Faulkner’s works.
Galandil 09/Feb/2006 at 06:27 PM
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When I first read "The Council of Elrond" chapter, I was confused because of all the dialogues and names I didn’t know, but I reread many times until it made some sense, then read the rest of the book, then read it again. At that point, it made a whole lot more sense. So yes at first, the chapter was a bit annoying, but I loved it dearly even as my (then young) brain muddled through it.

And honestly, other than those who saw the movies first, I haven’t once heard of someone complaining about the chapter. And really, if that is thought too difficult, I’d hate to hear the reaction to William Faulkner’s works.
Telancaren 10/Feb/2006 at 05:52 AM
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I didn’t had problems with "The Council of Elrond". I enjoyed reading the chapter because there are so many thing mentioned and deeper explained. Some things had been unclear or vague before, so I liked to get more information about them.
Especially Gandalf’s talk helped me a lot.
Actually it is one of my favourtie parts in both book and movie.
Telancaren 10/Feb/2006 at 05:52 AM
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I didn’t had problems with "The Council of Elrond". I enjoyed reading the chapter because there are so many thing mentioned and deeper explained. Some things had been unclear or vague before, so I liked to get more information about them.
Especially Gandalf’s talk helped me a lot.
Actually it is one of my favourtie parts in both book and movie.
Zinedine Zidane 10/Feb/2006 at 06:43 AM
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The chapter CE explains everything one needs to know to understand what the Ring and the Quest are all about, why they are important, how did the Ring come where it came. Also, it has been hyped in the previous and later chapters that Elrond is wise and experienced (I’m not saying its oveerhype), so Tolkien had to show his readers some proof for it. Elrond’s own account of the Last Alliance would be the best platform for that. It also represented through Boromir, Gandalf, Shadowfax, Frodo, Bilbo and Galdor(not to leave Legolas and Gloin), the doubts, questions and arguments that might arise in the mind of the reader. So I think its absolutely essential. And I dont think any word from A Tolkien work could appear boring.

Zinedine Zidane 10/Feb/2006 at 06:43 AM
Banned Points: 1069 Posts: 123 Joined: 16/Nov/2005

The chapter CE explains everything one needs to know to understand what the Ring and the Quest are all about, why they are important, how did the Ring come where it came. Also, it has been hyped in the previous and later chapters that Elrond is wise and experienced (I’m not saying its oveerhype), so Tolkien had to show his readers some proof for it. Elrond’s own account of the Last Alliance would be the best platform for that. It also represented through Boromir, Gandalf, Shadowfax, Frodo, Bilbo and Galdor(not to leave Legolas and Gloin), the doubts, questions and arguments that might arise in the mind of the reader. So I think its absolutely essential. And I dont think any word from A Tolkien work could appear boring.

Kirinki54 10/Feb/2006 at 01:45 PM
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Geordie, I am sure I have read at least one reference discussing the literary structure of LotR, saying that CE from a purely literary standpoint is ’impossible’ (or something of that order). As you have seen, I do not agree myself. No, I do not think this was connected to PJ but I can see why the fimmakers would jump at something like that.

The 35th Anniversary is a very private one: I first read LotR in April (possibly May) 1971. But I only got my first English original copy in 1972, so perhaps I can celebrate next year also.

As a comment to other posts above, given the monstrous changes made to CE in the movie, that is one of my least favourite scenes (which does say something given the absurd overall liberties PJ &Co have taken).

Kirinki54 10/Feb/2006 at 01:45 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

Geordie, I am sure I have read at least one reference discussing the literary structure of LotR, saying that CE from a purely literary standpoint is ’impossible’ (or something of that order). As you have seen, I do not agree myself. No, I do not think this was connected to PJ but I can see why the fimmakers would jump at something like that.

The 35th Anniversary is a very private one: I first read LotR in April (possibly May) 1971. But I only got my first English original copy in 1972, so perhaps I can celebrate next year also.

As a comment to other posts above, given the monstrous changes made to CE in the movie, that is one of my least favourite scenes (which does say something given the absurd overall liberties PJ &Co have taken).

Asha Greyjoy 10/Feb/2006 at 02:00 PM
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I think the Council of Elrond is a wonderful chapter, but the problem is that it has so much information, that you have to read it slowly and carefully to digest everything, and if your like me and skim read by nature, you can lose a lot of the chapter. But like anything else, if you read it enough, you will be able to understand it well enough.

It is a pivotal (pivital?) chapter, since it is our first real glimpse at how important Frodo’s quest is--it’s not just a hobbit doing a wizard and rogue man a favor, it’s about freeing all of Middle Earth and restoring a rightful king.

I like the dialogue--my favorite books usually have very well crafted dialogue.
Asha Greyjoy 10/Feb/2006 at 02:00 PM
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I think the Council of Elrond is a wonderful chapter, but the problem is that it has so much information, that you have to read it slowly and carefully to digest everything, and if your like me and skim read by nature, you can lose a lot of the chapter. But like anything else, if you read it enough, you will be able to understand it well enough.

It is a pivotal (pivital?) chapter, since it is our first real glimpse at how important Frodo’s quest is--it’s not just a hobbit doing a wizard and rogue man a favor, it’s about freeing all of Middle Earth and restoring a rightful king.

I like the dialogue--my favorite books usually have very well crafted dialogue.
Altura Flet 10/Feb/2006 at 02:09 PM
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I think that without the Council of Elrond the rest of the book, along with the characters would not fit in.  This is where many of them are introduced, at least more thoroughly and where we finally understand and see that Frodo is going to be the one to attempt to destroy the Ring.  It is probably the most important part of the books because of that fact.  It is the beginning of a whole new journey, the more important journey then traveling from the Shire to Rivendell.  From here on more is going to happen.  I don’t think it is boring at all.  I find it quite informative and it gives me a better view of what now must happen.  Without it the book would not be same, nor would the trilogy be the same.
Altura Flet 10/Feb/2006 at 02:09 PM
Merchant of Minas Tirith Points: 3709 Posts: 3341 Joined: 11/Nov/2002
I think that without the Council of Elrond the rest of the book, along with the characters would not fit in.  This is where many of them are introduced, at least more thoroughly and where we finally understand and see that Frodo is going to be the one to attempt to destroy the Ring.  It is probably the most important part of the books because of that fact.  It is the beginning of a whole new journey, the more important journey then traveling from the Shire to Rivendell.  From here on more is going to happen.  I don’t think it is boring at all.  I find it quite informative and it gives me a better view of what now must happen.  Without it the book would not be same, nor would the trilogy be the same.
Endril 10/Feb/2006 at 02:43 PM
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The council of Elrond is one of the best parts of the books. In this chapter we find a lot of things about the caracters and there personality. We see all the races in Middle Earth, except orcs, and here forms the fellowship, that will continue the adventure.

So you have nothing bad to say about the coucil of Elrond. 

Endril 10/Feb/2006 at 02:43 PM
Healer of Imladris Points: 9193 Posts: 9362 Joined: 15/Jan/2006

The council of Elrond is one of the best parts of the books. In this chapter we find a lot of things about the caracters and there personality. We see all the races in Middle Earth, except orcs, and here forms the fellowship, that will continue the adventure.

So you have nothing bad to say about the coucil of Elrond. 

Nethron 10/Feb/2006 at 03:26 PM
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I think the Council of Elrond could be boring to those who prefer action and fighting and stuff like that.  For those who like to know background and history, it’s great.  I love that chapter, personally.  It basically sets the stage for the rest of the story, so it is definitely a needed chapter. 
Nethron 10/Feb/2006 at 03:26 PM
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I think the Council of Elrond could be boring to those who prefer action and fighting and stuff like that.  For those who like to know background and history, it’s great.  I love that chapter, personally.  It basically sets the stage for the rest of the story, so it is definitely a needed chapter. 
Daywalker 10/Feb/2006 at 03:47 PM
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Yeah, i agree with Dagorthalion with this one. Council of Elrond does give a lot of backround to reader, no matter if you are reading LotR for the first time or then tenth time(like some people *g*).  It tells so much bout Aragorn, Gollum and all characters who are less or more important, Elrond for example.
Daywalker 10/Feb/2006 at 03:47 PM
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Yeah, i agree with Dagorthalion with this one. Council of Elrond does give a lot of backround to reader, no matter if you are reading LotR for the first time or then tenth time(like some people *g*).  It tells so much bout Aragorn, Gollum and all characters who are less or more important, Elrond for example.
halfir 10/Feb/2006 at 04:51 PM
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Kirinki54: As usual well presented and cogently argued.X(

I have always found The Council of Elrond  the chapter in the whole of LOTR for it gives us the comprehensive background that we lack due to the fact that The Silmarillion (at the time of LOTR’s publication) and its  world-picture was not in being for the reading public.

Moreover, it is the highpoint of the ’history lesson’ that we have progresively been given- firstly by Gandalf, then by Tom, a little more by Aragorn, and finally the culmination of all those three-inputs at the Council of Elrond, that, and the other points you so cogently make.

Shippey sees another aspect of its importance in its statement of one of the cardinal articles of faith of Tolkien and the Inklings- the fact that ultimate defeat does not turn right into wrong, and an assertion of the Northern ’theory of courage’. {Shippey- The Making of ME - Chptr. A Cartographic Plot 1992 Gradton paperback}

And , of course, in Author he rightly observes that it is:

’a laregly unappreciated tour de force’

He also points out, (both in Making and Author) the importance of ’language style’ in characterization, and, in a very amusing ’modernization’  in Author goes to the core of what the C of E is all about- other than giving us a vital history lesson and bringing us up to speed on what’s been happening in the wider world:

If the Council of Elrond were a well-organuized committee meeting of modern times, it would have on its agenda only three items:

(1) to determine whether Frodo’s ring is indeed the One Ring, the Ruling Ring
(2) if it is, to decide what action should be taken
(3) and further, who should take it.’ {Shippey - Author: Chptr.The Lord of the Rings (1):Mapping Out A Plot}X(

halfir 10/Feb/2006 at 04:51 PM
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Kirinki54: As usual well presented and cogently argued.X(

I have always found The Council of Elrond  the chapter in the whole of LOTR for it gives us the comprehensive background that we lack due to the fact that The Silmarillion (at the time of LOTR’s publication) and its  world-picture was not in being for the reading public.

Moreover, it is the highpoint of the ’history lesson’ that we have progresively been given- firstly by Gandalf, then by Tom, a little more by Aragorn, and finally the culmination of all those three-inputs at the Council of Elrond, that, and the other points you so cogently make.

Shippey sees another aspect of its importance in its statement of one of the cardinal articles of faith of Tolkien and the Inklings- the fact that ultimate defeat does not turn right into wrong, and an assertion of the Northern ’theory of courage’. {Shippey- The Making of ME - Chptr. A Cartographic Plot 1992 Gradton paperback}

And , of course, in Author he rightly observes that it is:

’a laregly unappreciated tour de force’

He also points out, (both in Making and Author) the importance of ’language style’ in characterization, and, in a very amusing ’modernization’  in Author goes to the core of what the C of E is all about- other than giving us a vital history lesson and bringing us up to speed on what’s been happening in the wider world:

If the Council of Elrond were a well-organuized committee meeting of modern times, it would have on its agenda only three items:

(1) to determine whether Frodo’s ring is indeed the One Ring, the Ruling Ring
(2) if it is, to decide what action should be taken
(3) and further, who should take it.’ {Shippey - Author: Chptr.The Lord of the Rings (1):Mapping Out A Plot}X(

Míriel Aditu 10/Feb/2006 at 05:12 PM
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I didn’t think it was boring, I especially like the part where Bilbo gets up and says he thinks they are all meaning he needs to go take the ring to destroy it and offers to do it. he’s so old at that point and it was really touching. Or so that’s how I see it
Míriel Aditu 10/Feb/2006 at 05:12 PM
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I didn’t think it was boring, I especially like the part where Bilbo gets up and says he thinks they are all meaning he needs to go take the ring to destroy it and offers to do it. he’s so old at that point and it was really touching. Or so that’s how I see it
Hasufel 10/Feb/2006 at 07:01 PM
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Some people consider my taste strange, because often my favorite parts of books are the parts where everything is explained, and gaps are filled in, and history is unveiled. And I love the Council of Elrond, because that is exactly what this chapter does.
The sheer amount of information and background given in CE is huge--and Tolkien does such an incredible job of imparting that information to us. Some people consider it boring, but just think--if any other author had tried to write a chapter like that, it wouldn’t have been nearly as interesting. But Tolkien manages to hold the attention of his readers (at least, he holds mine, and that of most others who have posted in this thread!), and maintain our interest. Yet another indicative of Tolkien’s genius (like we needed any more proof!)

halfir--if Tom Shippey had bothered to ask Bilbo, a good-sized meal would have been on that agenda, too.

Hasufel 10/Feb/2006 at 07:01 PM
Esquire of the Mark Points: 4360 Posts: 3308 Joined: 13/Apr/2002

Some people consider my taste strange, because often my favorite parts of books are the parts where everything is explained, and gaps are filled in, and history is unveiled. And I love the Council of Elrond, because that is exactly what this chapter does.
The sheer amount of information and background given in CE is huge--and Tolkien does such an incredible job of imparting that information to us. Some people consider it boring, but just think--if any other author had tried to write a chapter like that, it wouldn’t have been nearly as interesting. But Tolkien manages to hold the attention of his readers (at least, he holds mine, and that of most others who have posted in this thread!), and maintain our interest. Yet another indicative of Tolkien’s genius (like we needed any more proof!)

halfir--if Tom Shippey had bothered to ask Bilbo, a good-sized meal would have been on that agenda, too.

Maisaran 10/Feb/2006 at 07:07 PM
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   The council of Elrond is one of my favorite chapters of TFotR.  It’s the first time the whole fellowship is together, but the real "meat" of it is all the information.  Gandalf’s story, Boromir’s account of the goings ons in Gondor, all that good stuff.  Of course, I also find the chapter "The shadow of the past" equally as important (and interesting)!
Maisaran 10/Feb/2006 at 07:07 PM
Mercenary of Minas Tirith Points: 622 Posts: 295 Joined: 01/Jan/2006
   The council of Elrond is one of my favorite chapters of TFotR.  It’s the first time the whole fellowship is together, but the real "meat" of it is all the information.  Gandalf’s story, Boromir’s account of the goings ons in Gondor, all that good stuff.  Of course, I also find the chapter "The shadow of the past" equally as important (and interesting)!
Kirinki54 11/Feb/2006 at 07:46 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

Shippey sees another aspect of its importance in its statement of one of the cardinal articles of faith of Tolkien and the Inklings- the fact that ultimate defeat does not turn right into wrong, and an assertion of the Northern ’theory of courage’. {Shippey- The Making of ME - Chptr. A Cartographic Plot 1992 Gradton paperback}

Halfir, please elaborate on this. What is that later theory?

Kirinki54 11/Feb/2006 at 07:46 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

Shippey sees another aspect of its importance in its statement of one of the cardinal articles of faith of Tolkien and the Inklings- the fact that ultimate defeat does not turn right into wrong, and an assertion of the Northern ’theory of courage’. {Shippey- The Making of ME - Chptr. A Cartographic Plot 1992 Gradton paperback}

Halfir, please elaborate on this. What is that later theory?

halfir 11/Feb/2006 at 05:22 PM
Emeritus Points: 46547 Posts: 43664 Joined: 10/Mar/2002

Kirinki 54: The Northern ’theory of courage’ is a topic in its own right- and, as you might guess, one over which we all disagree and dispute!X( Can I suggest that you start on the trail of discovery by reading the first two of Largo’s brilliant threads Hopeless Courage?

Here you will find the views of some Nordic specialiists and loremasters on the subject. I might add that neither I nor my good friend Ragnelle- a leading Nordic scholar- agree with Largo’s interpretation-although we fully acknowledge its brilliance and its trail-blazing significance. Perhaps when you have looked-through those  threads RL will have given me some time to spend on that topic myself, although Tom still dominates the few hours that RL is currently permitting me on the Plaza!

http://www.lotrplaza.com/archive2/display_topic_threads.asp?ForumID=46&TopicID=82815&PagePosition=7

http://www.lotrplaza.com/archive2/display_topic_threads.asp?ForumID=46&TopicID=97712&PagePosition=5

halfir 11/Feb/2006 at 05:22 PM
Emeritus Points: 46547 Posts: 43664 Joined: 10/Mar/2002

Kirinki 54: The Northern ’theory of courage’ is a topic in its own right- and, as you might guess, one over which we all disagree and dispute!X( Can I suggest that you start on the trail of discovery by reading the first two of Largo’s brilliant threads Hopeless Courage?

Here you will find the views of some Nordic specialiists and loremasters on the subject. I might add that neither I nor my good friend Ragnelle- a leading Nordic scholar- agree with Largo’s interpretation-although we fully acknowledge its brilliance and its trail-blazing significance. Perhaps when you have looked-through those  threads RL will have given me some time to spend on that topic myself, although Tom still dominates the few hours that RL is currently permitting me on the Plaza!

http://www.lotrplaza.com/archive2/display_topic_threads.asp?ForumID=46&TopicID=82815&PagePosition=7

http://www.lotrplaza.com/archive2/display_topic_threads.asp?ForumID=46&TopicID=97712&PagePosition=5

Kirinki54 15/Feb/2006 at 01:34 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005
Having given those threads a cursory glance, not at all doing justice to all the ingenious work displayed there, I just have a small comment. I do recognize the importance of the distinction betwen amdir and estel. Many posters have focused on the connection of foolishness in relation to hope - understandably, as this is mirrored many times in the texts of LotR. But even if Tolkien did write that, there is an underlying thematic current of innocense as the basis for estel. As the good forces of the alliance did not succumb to the Machine (they choose the hard road both by virtue and pragmatism but not for power), they instead accepted Mortality and thus also did not Fall. And thusestel meant innocent faith, a belief that apparent hopelessness could be turned by eucatastrophy into victory for the good. Is there any parallel in this to the certainty of Ragnarök? For myself, I think not. I do agree that CE becomes a nexus also for the discussion on these motifs. I am not sure this makes sense; the topic deserves more study than I have applied.
Kirinki54 15/Feb/2006 at 01:34 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005
Having given those threads a cursory glance, not at all doing justice to all the ingenious work displayed there, I just have a small comment. I do recognize the importance of the distinction betwen amdir and estel. Many posters have focused on the connection of foolishness in relation to hope - understandably, as this is mirrored many times in the texts of LotR. But even if Tolkien did write that, there is an underlying thematic current of innocense as the basis for estel. As the good forces of the alliance did not succumb to the Machine (they choose the hard road both by virtue and pragmatism but not for power), they instead accepted Mortality and thus also did not Fall. And thusestel meant innocent faith, a belief that apparent hopelessness could be turned by eucatastrophy into victory for the good. Is there any parallel in this to the certainty of Ragnarök? For myself, I think not. I do agree that CE becomes a nexus also for the discussion on these motifs. I am not sure this makes sense; the topic deserves more study than I have applied.
halfir 15/Feb/2006 at 04:48 PM
Emeritus Points: 46547 Posts: 43664 Joined: 10/Mar/2002

Kirinki 54: As you rightly observe, this is a subject and half in its own right. I would only make one brief comment at this point. Yes, eucatastrophy ends LOTR- the Ring’s destruction earns mankind respite- but not closure,for Tolkien, I believe held firmly to  the view expressed by Galadriel as far as the mortal world is concerned:

’together through the ages of the world we have fought the long defeat’.

The real  - and final eucatastrophe- the one that would bring mankind closure , for him would be - in the words  of the Nicene Creed:

I look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come. AMEN.

 

halfir 15/Feb/2006 at 04:48 PM
Emeritus Points: 46547 Posts: 43664 Joined: 10/Mar/2002

Kirinki 54: As you rightly observe, this is a subject and half in its own right. I would only make one brief comment at this point. Yes, eucatastrophy ends LOTR- the Ring’s destruction earns mankind respite- but not closure,for Tolkien, I believe held firmly to  the view expressed by Galadriel as far as the mortal world is concerned:

’together through the ages of the world we have fought the long defeat’.

The real  - and final eucatastrophe- the one that would bring mankind closure , for him would be - in the words  of the Nicene Creed:

I look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come. AMEN.

 

Herewulf 17/Feb/2006 at 07:36 AM
Horse-groom of the Mark Points: 368 Posts: 122 Joined: 26/Feb/2008
Quote: Originally posted by halfir on Friday, February 10, 2006
If the Council of Elrond were a well-organuized committee meeting of modern times, it would have on its agenda only three items:

(1) to determine whether Frodo’s ring is indeed the One Ring, the Ruling Ring
(2) if it is, to decide what action should be taken
(3) and further, who should take it.’ {Shippey - Author: Chptr.The Lord of the Rings (1):Mapping Out A Plot}X(


Halfir my friend, I sit in many committee meetings here in modern times as I am in the military in a headquarters staff job. Unfortunately not many of our meetings are "well-organized" i must say.

Here’s the "Council of Elrond" agenda as a "true" modern committee meeting:

(1) to determine if Frodo’s ring is indeed the One Ring
(2) if it is, to determine several courses of action based upon cost and potential profit
(3) unleash the lawyers upon the situation
(4) pick the cheapest course of action
(5) review the course of action that will inevitably come in behind schedule and over budget
(6) outsource the destruction of the ring to the lowest bidder

**

Herewulf 17/Feb/2006 at 07:36 AM
Horse-groom of the Mark Points: 368 Posts: 122 Joined: 26/Feb/2008
Quote: Originally posted by halfir on Friday, February 10, 2006
If the Council of Elrond were a well-organuized committee meeting of modern times, it would have on its agenda only three items:

(1) to determine whether Frodo’s ring is indeed the One Ring, the Ruling Ring
(2) if it is, to decide what action should be taken
(3) and further, who should take it.’ {Shippey - Author: Chptr.The Lord of the Rings (1):Mapping Out A Plot}X(


Halfir my friend, I sit in many committee meetings here in modern times as I am in the military in a headquarters staff job. Unfortunately not many of our meetings are "well-organized" i must say.

Here’s the "Council of Elrond" agenda as a "true" modern committee meeting:

(1) to determine if Frodo’s ring is indeed the One Ring
(2) if it is, to determine several courses of action based upon cost and potential profit
(3) unleash the lawyers upon the situation
(4) pick the cheapest course of action
(5) review the course of action that will inevitably come in behind schedule and over budget
(6) outsource the destruction of the ring to the lowest bidder

**

halfir 17/Feb/2006 at 03:37 PM
Emeritus Points: 46547 Posts: 43664 Joined: 10/Mar/2002
X( Sauron would have had a field-day in the modern world! Sadly- perhaps his successors actually do!
halfir 17/Feb/2006 at 03:37 PM
Emeritus Points: 46547 Posts: 43664 Joined: 10/Mar/2002
X( Sauron would have had a field-day in the modern world! Sadly- perhaps his successors actually do!
Romennime 18/Feb/2006 at 01:50 PM
Scholar of Isengard Points: 687 Posts: 428 Joined: 09/Sep/2004
I don’t really wether I find this chapter good or bad or whatelse... I never think like that about chapters... The most important thing is the all book, isn’t it? However, I really don’t think that the council of elrond is boring. It is very interresting, I mean, so much happens then, doesn’t it?
Romennime 18/Feb/2006 at 01:50 PM
Scholar of Isengard Points: 687 Posts: 428 Joined: 09/Sep/2004
I don’t really wether I find this chapter good or bad or whatelse... I never think like that about chapters... The most important thing is the all book, isn’t it? However, I really don’t think that the council of elrond is boring. It is very interresting, I mean, so much happens then, doesn’t it?
Mithrien 18/Feb/2006 at 03:56 PM
Historian of Lothlorien Points: 4422 Posts: 3189 Joined: 24/Sep/2005
I totally agree with you Kirinki. I love this chapter, maybe its because I like tales. Its interesting and a meaningful part of the book. There is so much told there about what is to come, and what has already happened. And what needs to be done. I think I like it because I like to hear tales and stories, and I would explain what I mean, though I can’t figure out how to put it into words. Maybe its because I like parts of the story where things are explained, and this is one of them. Very important chapter it is.
Mithrien 18/Feb/2006 at 03:56 PM
Historian of Lothlorien Points: 4422 Posts: 3189 Joined: 24/Sep/2005
I totally agree with you Kirinki. I love this chapter, maybe its because I like tales. Its interesting and a meaningful part of the book. There is so much told there about what is to come, and what has already happened. And what needs to be done. I think I like it because I like to hear tales and stories, and I would explain what I mean, though I can’t figure out how to put it into words. Maybe its because I like parts of the story where things are explained, and this is one of them. Very important chapter it is.
Blackrose Bugg 18/Feb/2006 at 04:05 PM
New Soul Points: 21505 Posts: 30286 Joined: 19/Jan/2003
Ladies and Gentlemen - Please hang on to your hats - As the pet Valie of the Books Forum - I would like to move this over to Advanced Lore...should this not meet with the approval of the thread starter or posters- I will move it back post haste.
Blackrose Bugg 18/Feb/2006 at 04:05 PM
New Soul Points: 21505 Posts: 30286 Joined: 19/Jan/2003
Ladies and Gentlemen - Please hang on to your hats - As the pet Valie of the Books Forum - I would like to move this over to Advanced Lore...should this not meet with the approval of the thread starter or posters- I will move it back post haste.
Kirinki54 19/Feb/2006 at 03:10 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

Thanks! I have no objections. I think the combined efforts of the Loremasters can yield more on this topic, so I hope moving to AdLore can inspire people to do that.

PS I have racked my brain but to no avail: the Pet Valie of the Books Forum?

<Varda edit- K54, While Kingdoms have 2 rulers apiece, the Lore fora don’t have "assigned moderators".  Instead, each of us tends to haunt a particular forum that lies in our spheres of interest - Bael takes on Advanced Lore, I tend to hang out in the Books Forum, etc.  We aren’t the end all and be all, certainly.  You will see, as you did here- a lot of "cross-pollination" where we move around between the fora, but having a pair of eyes on the forum that concentrates on that forum reduces problems and increases things like tribute, opportunities, etc.>

Kirinki54 19/Feb/2006 at 03:10 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

Thanks! I have no objections. I think the combined efforts of the Loremasters can yield more on this topic, so I hope moving to AdLore can inspire people to do that.

PS I have racked my brain but to no avail: the Pet Valie of the Books Forum?

<Varda edit- K54, While Kingdoms have 2 rulers apiece, the Lore fora don’t have "assigned moderators".  Instead, each of us tends to haunt a particular forum that lies in our spheres of interest - Bael takes on Advanced Lore, I tend to hang out in the Books Forum, etc.  We aren’t the end all and be all, certainly.  You will see, as you did here- a lot of "cross-pollination" where we move around between the fora, but having a pair of eyes on the forum that concentrates on that forum reduces problems and increases things like tribute, opportunities, etc.>

Bearamir 20/Feb/2006 at 11:47 AM
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Greetings and Welcome to Ad Lore.  From what I can see, BB’s assessment of this thread is "spot on", so I certainly have no objections to the relocation of the thread here.  Best of Luck with your continuing discussion...
Bearamir 20/Feb/2006 at 11:47 AM
Emeritus Points: 16276 Posts: 16742 Joined: 21/Sep/2008
Greetings and Welcome to Ad Lore.  From what I can see, BB’s assessment of this thread is "spot on", so I certainly have no objections to the relocation of the thread here.  Best of Luck with your continuing discussion...
Kirinki54 20/Feb/2006 at 12:54 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

I was thinking of the the role of the chapter CE in terms of the "level" of the overall tale in LotR. I am not sure how to put this as I am not trained in literary analysis or dramaturgy, so allow me to use a metaphor. (Someone can surely express this in the right terminoloy.)

We start out in this literary vehicle at low speed, like first gear in a car. That would represent our entering the events surrounding Bilbo´s farewell party. We move rather slowly - but not uneventful - up to Crickhollow where we get into second gear entering the Old Forest and meeting Tom Bombadil. Third gear: Bree and the flight for Rivendell. Fourth gear: chapter CE and now we get rolling for real; the Quest is on!

It seems to me that there is a close connection between the dramatic level and and the mythologic depth in this "speed" increase.

Perhaps one can also find a similar decrease of dramatic level when the tale winds down? (Would the "counter" chapter to CE be The Fields of Cormallen?) But I see no similar decrease of mythologic depth; quite the contrary. A true mark of genious!

Your thoughts?

(And no, I am not a car mechanic either.)

Kirinki54 20/Feb/2006 at 12:54 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

I was thinking of the the role of the chapter CE in terms of the "level" of the overall tale in LotR. I am not sure how to put this as I am not trained in literary analysis or dramaturgy, so allow me to use a metaphor. (Someone can surely express this in the right terminoloy.)

We start out in this literary vehicle at low speed, like first gear in a car. That would represent our entering the events surrounding Bilbo´s farewell party. We move rather slowly - but not uneventful - up to Crickhollow where we get into second gear entering the Old Forest and meeting Tom Bombadil. Third gear: Bree and the flight for Rivendell. Fourth gear: chapter CE and now we get rolling for real; the Quest is on!

It seems to me that there is a close connection between the dramatic level and and the mythologic depth in this "speed" increase.

Perhaps one can also find a similar decrease of dramatic level when the tale winds down? (Would the "counter" chapter to CE be The Fields of Cormallen?) But I see no similar decrease of mythologic depth; quite the contrary. A true mark of genious!

Your thoughts?

(And no, I am not a car mechanic either.)

Saruman 20/Feb/2006 at 08:16 PM
Pilgrim of Isengard Points: 1207 Posts: 1027 Joined: 16/Aug/2008
Yes, the Council of Elrond is a wonderful chapter which introduces the great Boromir. It also contains a HUGE amount of important and interesting information. For a true Lord of the Rings fan, this chapter is an essential.
Saruman 20/Feb/2006 at 08:16 PM
Pilgrim of Isengard Points: 1207 Posts: 1027 Joined: 16/Aug/2008
Yes, the Council of Elrond is a wonderful chapter which introduces the great Boromir. It also contains a HUGE amount of important and interesting information. For a true Lord of the Rings fan, this chapter is an essential.
Legolas05 20/Feb/2006 at 09:43 PM
Archer of Imladris Points: 445 Posts: 82 Joined: 21/Jan/2003
I have always found it one of the great chapters Tolkien has wrote.  I have read atleast 25 times over and over again just because it gets your blood rushing.  I agree that it fore shadows in a great way but that is basically wat the chapter is for is to decide the different fates of the ring (the way the book should go).  There are varying chapters that also give me this chilling feeling like your almost in Middle Earth, but i will agree it is one of the best if not the best chapter Tolkien ever wrote.
Legolas05 20/Feb/2006 at 09:43 PM
Archer of Imladris Points: 445 Posts: 82 Joined: 21/Jan/2003
I have always found it one of the great chapters Tolkien has wrote.  I have read atleast 25 times over and over again just because it gets your blood rushing.  I agree that it fore shadows in a great way but that is basically wat the chapter is for is to decide the different fates of the ring (the way the book should go).  There are varying chapters that also give me this chilling feeling like your almost in Middle Earth, but i will agree it is one of the best if not the best chapter Tolkien ever wrote.
DaRk KillB1ll 21/Feb/2006 at 10:16 AM
Herald of Imladris Points: 177 Posts: 21 Joined: 18/Oct/2005

THE COUNSIL OF ELROD IS PLACE WHERE ALL THE FREE PEOPLE OF THE MIDDLE EARTH ARE MEETING TO DISCUSS ABOUT EVIL AND DIFFICULT TIMES AND HOW THEY WILL REJECT THEM.SO IS A PLACE THAT YOU CAN SEE MANY KIND CHARACTERS AS ELROD,ARAGORN,ARWEN,LEGOLAS,BILBO,SAM,MERRY,PIPPIN,FRODO,BOROMIR,GIMLI AND GANDALF

<Nessa Edit:  Please do not post your contributions in ALL CAPS.  On most discussion boards doing so implies that you are yelling (or angry), and I’m sure you don’t want to leave people with that impression...>

DaRk KillB1ll 21/Feb/2006 at 10:16 AM
Herald of Imladris Points: 177 Posts: 21 Joined: 18/Oct/2005

THE COUNSIL OF ELROD IS PLACE WHERE ALL THE FREE PEOPLE OF THE MIDDLE EARTH ARE MEETING TO DISCUSS ABOUT EVIL AND DIFFICULT TIMES AND HOW THEY WILL REJECT THEM.SO IS A PLACE THAT YOU CAN SEE MANY KIND CHARACTERS AS ELROD,ARAGORN,ARWEN,LEGOLAS,BILBO,SAM,MERRY,PIPPIN,FRODO,BOROMIR,GIMLI AND GANDALF

<Nessa Edit:  Please do not post your contributions in ALL CAPS.  On most discussion boards doing so implies that you are yelling (or angry), and I’m sure you don’t want to leave people with that impression...>

GandalfTheGrey7 24/Feb/2006 at 04:43 PM
Master of Isengard Points: 375 Posts: 121 Joined: 22/Jan/2006

~One of my favorite activities with friends and family has always been talking. ~Exchanging stories, news, information and communicating with each are the basis for most of my friendships, and the Council of Elrond is just that and it is a delight to read. One cannot have action all through a story, yet the tales told at the council are full of adventure in intrigue of their own.

~On a final note, I have always felt that it was the more subtle things in LOTR that made the story the classic it is today, putting deeds and combat where and when needed without the excess (and sometimes ridiculous) heroics that Tolkien’s many imitators often seem to do for lack of a interesting story line or to cover a generic and predictable character.

 

~Gandalf

GandalfTheGrey7 24/Feb/2006 at 04:43 PM
Master of Isengard Points: 375 Posts: 121 Joined: 22/Jan/2006

~One of my favorite activities with friends and family has always been talking. ~Exchanging stories, news, information and communicating with each are the basis for most of my friendships, and the Council of Elrond is just that and it is a delight to read. One cannot have action all through a story, yet the tales told at the council are full of adventure in intrigue of their own.

~On a final note, I have always felt that it was the more subtle things in LOTR that made the story the classic it is today, putting deeds and combat where and when needed without the excess (and sometimes ridiculous) heroics that Tolkien’s many imitators often seem to do for lack of a interesting story line or to cover a generic and predictable character.

 

~Gandalf

Istanira 24/Feb/2006 at 05:12 PM
Soldier of Mordor Points: 1596 Posts: 1367 Joined: 05/Nov/2005
I’ve read LoTR many times, and I always try to pace myself when I am reading; what I mean is that I try stop a reading ’session’ at moments of pause so I can begin the next session at a new narrative point that shifts direction or is at a pivotal moment. I think a lot of readers like to read books this way.

I ALWAYS begin a new reading session at the ’Council of Elrond’ chapter; it is the chapter in which I base my whole reading strategy of FoTR upon. Like others have said, and I whole-heartedly agree, it is THE crucial chapter; the reader gets the ’backstory’. And, though some do not like to get ’TMI--too much information’ and wish to get right to the point, I am one who enjoys finding the backstory, meandering to the hidden history, or the extra bit of knowledge gained that helps understand the whole.

The CoE is my favorite chapter of the book!
Istanira 24/Feb/2006 at 05:12 PM
Soldier of Mordor Points: 1596 Posts: 1367 Joined: 05/Nov/2005
I’ve read LoTR many times, and I always try to pace myself when I am reading; what I mean is that I try stop a reading ’session’ at moments of pause so I can begin the next session at a new narrative point that shifts direction or is at a pivotal moment. I think a lot of readers like to read books this way.

I ALWAYS begin a new reading session at the ’Council of Elrond’ chapter; it is the chapter in which I base my whole reading strategy of FoTR upon. Like others have said, and I whole-heartedly agree, it is THE crucial chapter; the reader gets the ’backstory’. And, though some do not like to get ’TMI--too much information’ and wish to get right to the point, I am one who enjoys finding the backstory, meandering to the hidden history, or the extra bit of knowledge gained that helps understand the whole.

The CoE is my favorite chapter of the book!
Jedi Ranger 01/Mar/2006 at 05:19 PM
New Soul Points: 460 Posts: 222 Joined: 28/Feb/2006

Oh man this was the big turning point in the book for me because up until now i was so confused about what the ring was and wat the world i was reading about was.  The CE told me everything i needed to know about it and it told me what the rest of the book was about.  it makes Aragorn (lord and master) and Gandalf come into the light to claim their true titles and become the cool kick-A guys they are (just that everyone did not know it yet) How they introduced aragron was soo cool saying that wat would a ranger know of this matter and then Gandalf jumps to his defense saying that poem, "The sword that was broken shall be remade, the crownless again shall be king, sorry i dont know all of it,  i loved that

 

Jedi Ranger 01/Mar/2006 at 05:19 PM
New Soul Points: 460 Posts: 222 Joined: 28/Feb/2006

Oh man this was the big turning point in the book for me because up until now i was so confused about what the ring was and wat the world i was reading about was.  The CE told me everything i needed to know about it and it told me what the rest of the book was about.  it makes Aragorn (lord and master) and Gandalf come into the light to claim their true titles and become the cool kick-A guys they are (just that everyone did not know it yet) How they introduced aragron was soo cool saying that wat would a ranger know of this matter and then Gandalf jumps to his defense saying that poem, "The sword that was broken shall be remade, the crownless again shall be king, sorry i dont know all of it,  i loved that

 

Svouras 03/Mar/2006 at 06:59 PM
New Soul Points: 105 Posts: 12 Joined: 03/Mar/2006
Quote: Originally posted by Kirinki54 on Thursday, February 09, 2006

- Tolkien wrote (in Letter 131) about Elrond as sort of a pivotal character, appearing in all stories, and nexus figure for the fates of Elves and Men. Elrond certainly is just that in CE. But, especially in CE, also Imladris as place functions as a nexus location for the mythology in LotR and what preceded the events unfolding there. 


 

I always tend to think that Elrond’s status is much higher that it actually appears to be. I always though that it has perhaps to do with his special heritage after all he is a half elf (and according to my point of view the only one -at his time- and the last one until the fourth age. But thats a point for another topic) Plotwise he is also in my mind something of a counter balance for Sauron atleast for the first book and the history before the War.

 

Anyway back on topic: CE as chapter is simply marvelous in what it achievs. Think about it. In a single chapter Tolkien manages to:

-Introduce a vast range of characters and consideraly fless out some of them while pussing forward with the characters he laready has introduced. (Boromir, Legolas, Gimli, some of the counsilors, Aragorn, Elrond)

-Fill in any story gaps. (Gandalf’s adventures)

-Linkup with previous work that the reader may know (Dwarves of Erebor, Bilbo’s adventure)

-Provide full backround info about the whole issue (2nd age story, Last Alliance etch)

-Provide the wider picture of what is happening to the world. (Erebor, Mirkwood, Rohan,Gondor)

-Give info that will be useful to the reader in the future - to understand a few things (Rohan situation , Moria’s state)

-Introduce a new enemy (Saruman)

-Push the plot forward (this is the ring and what we do about it)

-Plant the first seeds of upcoming developments (Boromir’s stance against Aragorn and Frodo, Gimli and Legolas relationship, the Ring’s hold on Frodo etch)

 

Impressive aint it? That is why this chapter is the first one I read when I go back through the Fellowship now and then.

<Nessa Edit:  Welcome to the Plaza and the Ad Lore Forum  For one of your first posts, this is an *excellent* contribution.  Please accept my compliments (and a small tribute) for your efforts> 

Svouras 03/Mar/2006 at 06:59 PM
New Soul Points: 105 Posts: 12 Joined: 03/Mar/2006
Quote: Originally posted by Kirinki54 on Thursday, February 09, 2006

- Tolkien wrote (in Letter 131) about Elrond as sort of a pivotal character, appearing in all stories, and nexus figure for the fates of Elves and Men. Elrond certainly is just that in CE. But, especially in CE, also Imladris as place functions as a nexus location for the mythology in LotR and what preceded the events unfolding there. 


 

I always tend to think that Elrond’s status is much higher that it actually appears to be. I always though that it has perhaps to do with his special heritage after all he is a half elf (and according to my point of view the only one -at his time- and the last one until the fourth age. But thats a point for another topic) Plotwise he is also in my mind something of a counter balance for Sauron atleast for the first book and the history before the War.

 

Anyway back on topic: CE as chapter is simply marvelous in what it achievs. Think about it. In a single chapter Tolkien manages to:

-Introduce a vast range of characters and consideraly fless out some of them while pussing forward with the characters he laready has introduced. (Boromir, Legolas, Gimli, some of the counsilors, Aragorn, Elrond)

-Fill in any story gaps. (Gandalf’s adventures)

-Linkup with previous work that the reader may know (Dwarves of Erebor, Bilbo’s adventure)

-Provide full backround info about the whole issue (2nd age story, Last Alliance etch)

-Provide the wider picture of what is happening to the world. (Erebor, Mirkwood, Rohan,Gondor)

-Give info that will be useful to the reader in the future - to understand a few things (Rohan situation , Moria’s state)

-Introduce a new enemy (Saruman)

-Push the plot forward (this is the ring and what we do about it)

-Plant the first seeds of upcoming developments (Boromir’s stance against Aragorn and Frodo, Gimli and Legolas relationship, the Ring’s hold on Frodo etch)

 

Impressive aint it? That is why this chapter is the first one I read when I go back through the Fellowship now and then.

<Nessa Edit:  Welcome to the Plaza and the Ad Lore Forum  For one of your first posts, this is an *excellent* contribution.  Please accept my compliments (and a small tribute) for your efforts> 

Kirinki54 04/Mar/2006 at 03:23 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

Hi Svouras, and welcome!

I always tend to think that Elrond’s status is much higher that it actually appears to be. I always though that it has perhaps to do with his special heritage after all he is a half elf (and according to my point of view the only one -at his time- and the last one until the fourth age. But thats a point for another topic) Plotwise he is also in my mind something of a counter balance for Sauron atleast for the first book and the history before the War.

Elrond´s status is indeed high, but I agree that in the chapter of CE he is - though undoubtedly the master of the proceedings - rather low-key.

But think of the situation and his role. While he certainly is the nexus figure (to whom all the others have ’been called’) the first prority of the council is to bring all facts into the discussion. And Elrond, after giving the all the historical background from personal memory (how is that for status!), grants everybody the right to do so, even when Boromir barges in. Naturally the later events especially must be scrutinized in great detail, and so the other persons present at the council will take a greater space in the narrative. Especially Gandalf excels with his beautiful language in several accounts, and could indeed be perceived as having the higher status.

However, Elrond as the moderator of the council, after letting all those tales be told, takes care of tying the threads together.

As to Elrond´s heritage, he is indeed one of the Peredhil, though now counted as Elf. But not only that, think of who were his ancestors: among them were the greatest of Elves and Men and even the Melian strain through Lúthien. Possibly Elrond could have been High King of the Noldor (hotly debated!), that fact itself speaks of both heritage and stature. He is, as you say, binding the four Ages together.

Elrond as a counter balance to Sauron? Well, yes, in a sense, though I perceive he was not alone: I would perhaps give that role to the White Council. And there was people like Galadriel who actually summoned the first White Council together, and Gandalf who actually (both by himself and others) are likened to Sauron´s chief enemy.

Kirinki54 04/Mar/2006 at 03:23 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

Hi Svouras, and welcome!

I always tend to think that Elrond’s status is much higher that it actually appears to be. I always though that it has perhaps to do with his special heritage after all he is a half elf (and according to my point of view the only one -at his time- and the last one until the fourth age. But thats a point for another topic) Plotwise he is also in my mind something of a counter balance for Sauron atleast for the first book and the history before the War.

Elrond´s status is indeed high, but I agree that in the chapter of CE he is - though undoubtedly the master of the proceedings - rather low-key.

But think of the situation and his role. While he certainly is the nexus figure (to whom all the others have ’been called’) the first prority of the council is to bring all facts into the discussion. And Elrond, after giving the all the historical background from personal memory (how is that for status!), grants everybody the right to do so, even when Boromir barges in. Naturally the later events especially must be scrutinized in great detail, and so the other persons present at the council will take a greater space in the narrative. Especially Gandalf excels with his beautiful language in several accounts, and could indeed be perceived as having the higher status.

However, Elrond as the moderator of the council, after letting all those tales be told, takes care of tying the threads together.

As to Elrond´s heritage, he is indeed one of the Peredhil, though now counted as Elf. But not only that, think of who were his ancestors: among them were the greatest of Elves and Men and even the Melian strain through Lúthien. Possibly Elrond could have been High King of the Noldor (hotly debated!), that fact itself speaks of both heritage and stature. He is, as you say, binding the four Ages together.

Elrond as a counter balance to Sauron? Well, yes, in a sense, though I perceive he was not alone: I would perhaps give that role to the White Council. And there was people like Galadriel who actually summoned the first White Council together, and Gandalf who actually (both by himself and others) are likened to Sauron´s chief enemy.

Svouras 04/Mar/2006 at 06:18 AM
New Soul Points: 105 Posts: 12 Joined: 03/Mar/2006

What I would like to say  is that Elrond’s status as Saurons counterbalance is a completly personal view. When I say that Elrond counter balances the Dark Lord I mean it mostly from a writers point of view and book dynamics. He is a figurehead (a much talked about figured head- much like Sauron is throughtout the books), while not activelly partisipating himself in the whole affair his actions directly affect it: see for example Elrond’s decision to sent out riders to seek news and/or the ringbearer a move I usually like to think as a counterweight to Sauron’s senting of the 9. He is stationary and ruling  THE haven for light (like Sauron is stationary and rules the ultimate heaven for darkness), he uses large scale magic  (the white river horses) much like Sauron used the black shroud-although the whole consept is rather different.

But aside from these and a few other similarities I have to agree with you that Elrond (alone) is not Sauron’s counterbalance for in-book purposes. In fact after the fellowship departs from Rivendell his status becomes more like back seat giving over the reigns of indirect involvement to Galadriel and the active role of Sauron’s enemy to Gandalf.

Conserning his role in the actual council well it is obvious that he is needed there as an anchor and a link. A link to things past and wisdom lost that even Gandalf cannot help with (simply beacuse he wasnt in Middle Earth during he Second Age) and an anchor (and a kind of regulator) to everyone in the council. His role as a silent force is much more in accordance to his character and the way we ve come to see him (see the first paragraph of my post).Still it is well established that it is his council, he is the center of gravity here that pulls everyone together and sets them about to do their tasks: Examples of this are plety: He is the Only one that during the proceedings disciplines Gandalf -who s pretty much doing everything during the council. It is also important that Elrond is the one that announces officially the members of the fellowship when all is said and done.

------------

Irrelevant but still picked my interest :Kirinki  You said that Elrond could be the King of Noldor I rememebr correctly Elrond in no way related to them Correct me if I am wrong as I dont have the Silmarillion with me at the moment.

-------------

Thank you both for the welcoming 

**

Svouras 04/Mar/2006 at 06:18 AM
New Soul Points: 105 Posts: 12 Joined: 03/Mar/2006

What I would like to say  is that Elrond’s status as Saurons counterbalance is a completly personal view. When I say that Elrond counter balances the Dark Lord I mean it mostly from a writers point of view and book dynamics. He is a figurehead (a much talked about figured head- much like Sauron is throughtout the books), while not activelly partisipating himself in the whole affair his actions directly affect it: see for example Elrond’s decision to sent out riders to seek news and/or the ringbearer a move I usually like to think as a counterweight to Sauron’s senting of the 9. He is stationary and ruling  THE haven for light (like Sauron is stationary and rules the ultimate heaven for darkness), he uses large scale magic  (the white river horses) much like Sauron used the black shroud-although the whole consept is rather different.

But aside from these and a few other similarities I have to agree with you that Elrond (alone) is not Sauron’s counterbalance for in-book purposes. In fact after the fellowship departs from Rivendell his status becomes more like back seat giving over the reigns of indirect involvement to Galadriel and the active role of Sauron’s enemy to Gandalf.

Conserning his role in the actual council well it is obvious that he is needed there as an anchor and a link. A link to things past and wisdom lost that even Gandalf cannot help with (simply beacuse he wasnt in Middle Earth during he Second Age) and an anchor (and a kind of regulator) to everyone in the council. His role as a silent force is much more in accordance to his character and the way we ve come to see him (see the first paragraph of my post).Still it is well established that it is his council, he is the center of gravity here that pulls everyone together and sets them about to do their tasks: Examples of this are plety: He is the Only one that during the proceedings disciplines Gandalf -who s pretty much doing everything during the council. It is also important that Elrond is the one that announces officially the members of the fellowship when all is said and done.

------------

Irrelevant but still picked my interest :Kirinki  You said that Elrond could be the King of Noldor I rememebr correctly Elrond in no way related to them Correct me if I am wrong as I dont have the Silmarillion with me at the moment.

-------------

Thank you both for the welcoming 

**

Kirinki54 04/Mar/2006 at 07:28 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

I agree with most of your points, Svouras, and well put!

 

When I say that Elrond counter balances the Dark Lord I mean it mostly from a writers point of view and book dynamics.

 

Yes, Elrond might represent that in terms of literary dynamics.

 

He is a figurehead (a much talked about figured head- much like Sauron is throughtout the books), while not activelly partisipating himself in the whole affair his actions directly affect it: see for example Elrond’s decision to sent out riders to seek news and/or the ringbearer a move I usually like to think as a counterweight to Sauron’s senting of the 9./…/ It is also important that Elrond is the one that announces officially the members of the fellowship when all is said and done.

 

Absolutely. Elrond even makes this comparison himself:

 

`The Company of the Ring shall be Nine; and the Nine Walkers shall be set against the Nine Riders that are evil. With you and your faithful servant, Gandalf will go; for this shall be his great task, and maybe the end of his labours. (LotR)

 

He is stationary and ruling  THE haven for light (like Sauron is stationary and rules the ultimate heaven for darkness), he uses large scale magic  (the white river horses) much like Sauron used the black shroud-although the whole consept is rather different.

 

I like that parallel on the horses. But he is not alone in staying ‘indoors’ during the War of the Ring; so does the other Elven lords. One sign of the loss of vitality, but also of the need to be there to meet on-coming enemy attackers.

 

Finwë = Indis                              
                 |                                        
             Fingolfin = Anairë    Galdor      Thingol = Melian
                      |                            |                         |
                 Turgon = Elenwë   Huor       Beren = Lúthien
                             |                     |                       |
                            Idril ======= Tuor              Dior = Nimloth
                                         I                                     | 
                                         |                             -------------------------
                                         |                             |                |           |
                                      Eärendil ======== Elwing   Eluréd and Elurín     Galadriel = Celeborn
                                       |                                                                                            |
                                ------------------                      ----------- ------------------------------------
                                |                     |                     |
                              Elros            Elrond = Celebrían

 

 

Elrond does count the Finwëan royal line among his ancestors, although not patrilineally (as his father was Eärendil and grandmother Idril). Obviously, Galadriel is much closer related in the Noldorin hierarchy (being the daughter of Finarfin and granddaughter of Finwë), but either because she was of female gender or because she did not want, she never became the heir to the title. Or perhaps, as the High Elves of ME lost vitality and importance, the title in itself became futile. So: in conclusion, I have seen people debate whether Elrond could have been High King; as for myself I am not 100% certain that he qualified.

**

Kirinki54 04/Mar/2006 at 07:28 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

I agree with most of your points, Svouras, and well put!

 

When I say that Elrond counter balances the Dark Lord I mean it mostly from a writers point of view and book dynamics.

 

Yes, Elrond might represent that in terms of literary dynamics.

 

He is a figurehead (a much talked about figured head- much like Sauron is throughtout the books), while not activelly partisipating himself in the whole affair his actions directly affect it: see for example Elrond’s decision to sent out riders to seek news and/or the ringbearer a move I usually like to think as a counterweight to Sauron’s senting of the 9./…/ It is also important that Elrond is the one that announces officially the members of the fellowship when all is said and done.

 

Absolutely. Elrond even makes this comparison himself:

 

`The Company of the Ring shall be Nine; and the Nine Walkers shall be set against the Nine Riders that are evil. With you and your faithful servant, Gandalf will go; for this shall be his great task, and maybe the end of his labours. (LotR)

 

He is stationary and ruling  THE haven for light (like Sauron is stationary and rules the ultimate heaven for darkness), he uses large scale magic  (the white river horses) much like Sauron used the black shroud-although the whole consept is rather different.

 

I like that parallel on the horses. But he is not alone in staying ‘indoors’ during the War of the Ring; so does the other Elven lords. One sign of the loss of vitality, but also of the need to be there to meet on-coming enemy attackers.

 

Finwë = Indis                              
                 |                                        
             Fingolfin = Anairë    Galdor      Thingol = Melian
                      |                            |                         |
                 Turgon = Elenwë   Huor       Beren = Lúthien
                             |                     |                       |
                            Idril ======= Tuor              Dior = Nimloth
                                         I                                     | 
                                         |                             -------------------------
                                         |                             |                |           |
                                      Eärendil ======== Elwing   Eluréd and Elurín     Galadriel = Celeborn
                                       |                                                                                            |
                                ------------------                      ----------- ------------------------------------
                                |                     |                     |
                              Elros            Elrond = Celebrían

 

 

Elrond does count the Finwëan royal line among his ancestors, although not patrilineally (as his father was Eärendil and grandmother Idril). Obviously, Galadriel is much closer related in the Noldorin hierarchy (being the daughter of Finarfin and granddaughter of Finwë), but either because she was of female gender or because she did not want, she never became the heir to the title. Or perhaps, as the High Elves of ME lost vitality and importance, the title in itself became futile. So: in conclusion, I have seen people debate whether Elrond could have been High King; as for myself I am not 100% certain that he qualified.

**

Kirinki54 04/Mar/2006 at 07:30 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

Oops, that family tree re-formatted itself. Is it possible to understand?

Kirinki54 04/Mar/2006 at 07:30 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

Oops, that family tree re-formatted itself. Is it possible to understand?

Kirinki54 08/Mar/2006 at 06:13 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

’The Council of Elrond’ is likely the most distinctive chapter when it comes to concentration in time and space. The time used is spent between breakfast and lunch, and almost all of the action in CE takes place at the porch! Very little is described of the milieu and interior, there are but a few references to time moving on, even characters are quite simply depicted. The whole setting is staged and prepared for the Word: tales upon tales...

I got the craziest notion in general of the setting as one of the Gentleman´s clubs that flourished in Britain in those days (and perhaps even now) and even a specific notion that the CE is actually one of the meetings of the Inklings - not literally, but you get my drift...

Kirinki54 08/Mar/2006 at 06:13 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

’The Council of Elrond’ is likely the most distinctive chapter when it comes to concentration in time and space. The time used is spent between breakfast and lunch, and almost all of the action in CE takes place at the porch! Very little is described of the milieu and interior, there are but a few references to time moving on, even characters are quite simply depicted. The whole setting is staged and prepared for the Word: tales upon tales...

I got the craziest notion in general of the setting as one of the Gentleman´s clubs that flourished in Britain in those days (and perhaps even now) and even a specific notion that the CE is actually one of the meetings of the Inklings - not literally, but you get my drift...

goldenhair 09/Mar/2006 at 07:09 AM
Scholar of Isengard Points: 1480 Posts: 1194 Joined: 10/Dec/2002
I find CE to be one of my favorites, not just for the sophisticated reasons correctly asserted above, but because I find it extremely enjoyable. I have in the past picked up FOTR and read just the one chapter and put it back down.

As to Halfir’s comment:

The real - and final eucatastrophe- the one that would bring mankind closure , for him would be - in the words of the Nicene Creed:

I look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come. AMEN.

It is almost as if you are speaking of Gandalfs final visit with Tom B.

"He is a moss gatherer and I have been a stone doomed to rolling. But my rolling days are ending and now we shall have much to say to one another."

goldenhair 09/Mar/2006 at 07:09 AM
Scholar of Isengard Points: 1480 Posts: 1194 Joined: 10/Dec/2002
I find CE to be one of my favorites, not just for the sophisticated reasons correctly asserted above, but because I find it extremely enjoyable. I have in the past picked up FOTR and read just the one chapter and put it back down.

As to Halfir’s comment:

The real - and final eucatastrophe- the one that would bring mankind closure , for him would be - in the words of the Nicene Creed:

I look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come. AMEN.

It is almost as if you are speaking of Gandalfs final visit with Tom B.

"He is a moss gatherer and I have been a stone doomed to rolling. But my rolling days are ending and now we shall have much to say to one another."

Ancalimia 09/Mar/2006 at 08:27 AM
Gardener of Lothlorien Points: 272 Posts: 75 Joined: 01/Mar/2006
The CE chapter is one of the most important in the books because it sets up the action to come and gives the history of the past.  However, for people who are more familiar with the movies than the books, it seems slow because they don’t have the historic background, and they are surprised by the differences from the movie version.  I agree with one of the posts above that it’s actually a very efficient meeting run by Elrond, in which he gets everyone up to speed on what has been happening in connection with the Ring and its history, and then they discuss which action to take.  When I read LOTR for the first time (in junior high, LONG before there were movies), I expect that I was bored.  Now, when I read it as an adult who has read LOTR four times, I am fascinated.    
Ancalimia 09/Mar/2006 at 08:27 AM
Gardener of Lothlorien Points: 272 Posts: 75 Joined: 01/Mar/2006
The CE chapter is one of the most important in the books because it sets up the action to come and gives the history of the past.  However, for people who are more familiar with the movies than the books, it seems slow because they don’t have the historic background, and they are surprised by the differences from the movie version.  I agree with one of the posts above that it’s actually a very efficient meeting run by Elrond, in which he gets everyone up to speed on what has been happening in connection with the Ring and its history, and then they discuss which action to take.  When I read LOTR for the first time (in junior high, LONG before there were movies), I expect that I was bored.  Now, when I read it as an adult who has read LOTR four times, I am fascinated.    
Kirinki54 15/Mar/2006 at 08:37 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

There are two characters in the Council of Elrond (CE) that does not appear elsewhere in LotR; Galdor and Erestor (except that the latter came to the wedding of Arwen and Aragorn). Not much is mentioned of them in CE, but they participate in the debate.

 

Tolkien in late works expanded on whether there was two ‘Glorfindels’, and on the issue of re-using name also pondered the chance of Galdor of the Havens being the same as Galdor of the Tree in Gondolin.

 

From HoME 12: Late Writings, notes on the essay on Glorfindel (commented by Christopher Tolkien):

 

1. It may be noted that Galdor is another name of similar sort and period of origin, but he appears as a messenger from Cirdan and is called Galdor of the Havens. Galdor also appeared  in The Fall of Gondolin, but the name is of a more simple and usual form [than Glorfindel]  and might be repeated. But unless he is said in The Fall of Gondolin to have been slain, he  can reasonably be supposed to be the same person, one of the Noldor who escaped from the  siege and destruction, but fled west to the Havens, and not southwards to the mouths of  Sirion, as did most of the remnant of the people of Gondolin together with Tuor, Idril, and Earendil. He is represented in The Council of  Elrond as less powerful and much less wise  than Glorfindel; and so evidently had not returned to Valinor, and been purged, and reincarnated.     

   

[See  note  3. -  The words ’the name [Galdor] is of a more simple and usual form [than Glorfindel] and might be repeated’ show that on the lost first page my father had discussed (as he would do in the following text) the possibility that there were two distinct persons named Glorfindel, and had concluded that it was too improbable to be entertained. -  ’But unless he is said in The Fall of Gondolin to have been slain’: my father would probably have been hard put to it to lay his hand on The Fall of Gondolin, and without consulting it he could not say for certain what had been Galdor’s fate (this, I take it, is his meaning). In fact, Galdor was  not  slain, but led the fugitives over the pass of Cristhorn while Glorfindel came up at the rear  (II.191 -  2), and in the ’Name-list to The Fall of Gondolin’ (II.215) it is said that  he went to Sirion’s mouth, and that ’he dwelleth yet  in Tol  Eressea’. He was the lord of the people of the Tree in Gondolin, and of him it was said in the old tale that he ’was held the most valiant of all the Gondothlim save Turgon alone’ (II.173).]

 

3.  Galdor in contrast, even in the brief glimpses we have in the Council, is seen clearly as an inferior person, and much less wise. He, whether he appears in The Silmarillion or not, must  be either (as his  name suggests) a Sindarin Elf who had never left Middle-earth and seen the Blessed Realm, or one of the Noldor who had been exiled for rebellion, and had also remained in Middle-earth, and had not, or not yet, accepted the pardon of the Valar and   returned to the home prepared for them in the West, in reward for their valour  against Melkor. [The view of Galdor expressed in this note and in note 1 seems hardly justified by  the report of his contributions to the Council of Elrond; and if he were indeed Galdor of  Gondolin he had had long ages in which to acquire wisdom in the hard world of Middle-earth. But there is no reason to suppose that when my father wrote the chapter The Council of Elrond he associated Galdor of the Havens with Galdor of Gondolin.]  

 

I have to agree with CT that Galdor does not come across as especially inferior or obtuse in relation to Glorfindel or the others, as Tolkien seems to think. But on CTs concluding remark, I am not so sure. Is it really impossible that at the time of conception of CE, Tolkien in some train of thought again brought together two of the heroes of the fall of Gondolin; Glorfindel and Galdor? The case is clearly ambiguous at least.

 

On Erestor: he - like Galdor - went through some changes in origin and role during the process of writing (as can be seen in HoME 6 and 7). At one point in the conception of CE, he was related to Elrond (at least CT construed it that way).

 

Though he was the head of Elrond´s household councillors, Erestor´s importance and wisdom were lessened in the ultimate version. At least some of his remarks in the debate were given instead to Glorfindel, and it seems that Tolkien wanted to emphasize the unique position of this character.

 

Erestor was also at one stage considered to go on the Quest, but this notion is not present in the LotR. There is but a remnant of it:

 

’There remain two more to be found,’ said Elrond. "These I will consider. Of my household I may find some that it seems good to me to send.’

 

Any thoughts in terms of internal logic why Erestor was gradually made of lesser importance?

**

Kirinki54 15/Mar/2006 at 08:37 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

There are two characters in the Council of Elrond (CE) that does not appear elsewhere in LotR; Galdor and Erestor (except that the latter came to the wedding of Arwen and Aragorn). Not much is mentioned of them in CE, but they participate in the debate.

 

Tolkien in late works expanded on whether there was two ‘Glorfindels’, and on the issue of re-using name also pondered the chance of Galdor of the Havens being the same as Galdor of the Tree in Gondolin.

 

From HoME 12: Late Writings, notes on the essay on Glorfindel (commented by Christopher Tolkien):

 

1. It may be noted that Galdor is another name of similar sort and period of origin, but he appears as a messenger from Cirdan and is called Galdor of the Havens. Galdor also appeared  in The Fall of Gondolin, but the name is of a more simple and usual form [than Glorfindel]  and might be repeated. But unless he is said in The Fall of Gondolin to have been slain, he  can reasonably be supposed to be the same person, one of the Noldor who escaped from the  siege and destruction, but fled west to the Havens, and not southwards to the mouths of  Sirion, as did most of the remnant of the people of Gondolin together with Tuor, Idril, and Earendil. He is represented in The Council of  Elrond as less powerful and much less wise  than Glorfindel; and so evidently had not returned to Valinor, and been purged, and reincarnated.     

   

[See  note  3. -  The words ’the name [Galdor] is of a more simple and usual form [than Glorfindel] and might be repeated’ show that on the lost first page my father had discussed (as he would do in the following text) the possibility that there were two distinct persons named Glorfindel, and had concluded that it was too improbable to be entertained. -  ’But unless he is said in The Fall of Gondolin to have been slain’: my father would probably have been hard put to it to lay his hand on The Fall of Gondolin, and without consulting it he could not say for certain what had been Galdor’s fate (this, I take it, is his meaning). In fact, Galdor was  not  slain, but led the fugitives over the pass of Cristhorn while Glorfindel came up at the rear  (II.191 -  2), and in the ’Name-list to The Fall of Gondolin’ (II.215) it is said that  he went to Sirion’s mouth, and that ’he dwelleth yet  in Tol  Eressea’. He was the lord of the people of the Tree in Gondolin, and of him it was said in the old tale that he ’was held the most valiant of all the Gondothlim save Turgon alone’ (II.173).]

 

3.  Galdor in contrast, even in the brief glimpses we have in the Council, is seen clearly as an inferior person, and much less wise. He, whether he appears in The Silmarillion or not, must  be either (as his  name suggests) a Sindarin Elf who had never left Middle-earth and seen the Blessed Realm, or one of the Noldor who had been exiled for rebellion, and had also remained in Middle-earth, and had not, or not yet, accepted the pardon of the Valar and   returned to the home prepared for them in the West, in reward for their valour  against Melkor. [The view of Galdor expressed in this note and in note 1 seems hardly justified by  the report of his contributions to the Council of Elrond; and if he were indeed Galdor of  Gondolin he had had long ages in which to acquire wisdom in the hard world of Middle-earth. But there is no reason to suppose that when my father wrote the chapter The Council of Elrond he associated Galdor of the Havens with Galdor of Gondolin.]  

 

I have to agree with CT that Galdor does not come across as especially inferior or obtuse in relation to Glorfindel or the others, as Tolkien seems to think. But on CTs concluding remark, I am not so sure. Is it really impossible that at the time of conception of CE, Tolkien in some train of thought again brought together two of the heroes of the fall of Gondolin; Glorfindel and Galdor? The case is clearly ambiguous at least.

 

On Erestor: he - like Galdor - went through some changes in origin and role during the process of writing (as can be seen in HoME 6 and 7). At one point in the conception of CE, he was related to Elrond (at least CT construed it that way).

 

Though he was the head of Elrond´s household councillors, Erestor´s importance and wisdom were lessened in the ultimate version. At least some of his remarks in the debate were given instead to Glorfindel, and it seems that Tolkien wanted to emphasize the unique position of this character.

 

Erestor was also at one stage considered to go on the Quest, but this notion is not present in the LotR. There is but a remnant of it:

 

’There remain two more to be found,’ said Elrond. "These I will consider. Of my household I may find some that it seems good to me to send.’

 

Any thoughts in terms of internal logic why Erestor was gradually made of lesser importance?

**

Endril 26/Mar/2006 at 06:09 AM
Healer of Imladris Points: 9193 Posts: 9362 Joined: 15/Jan/2006
I think the council of Elrond is a very important part of LOTR. There it is shown that fizical force is useless against the ring and allso seemed to me that in this moment of the story all the races gather in one place and forgot about the conflicts between them, trying to save ME from the great shadow. The gathering of the fellowship meens the reconciliation between all races of ME, allmost all.
Endril 26/Mar/2006 at 06:09 AM
Healer of Imladris Points: 9193 Posts: 9362 Joined: 15/Jan/2006
I think the council of Elrond is a very important part of LOTR. There it is shown that fizical force is useless against the ring and allso seemed to me that in this moment of the story all the races gather in one place and forgot about the conflicts between them, trying to save ME from the great shadow. The gathering of the fellowship meens the reconciliation between all races of ME, allmost all.
Kirinki54 26/Mar/2006 at 07:13 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

I think you are right, LEGOLAS. The unity of all the free Folks is a pre-requisite for setting out on the Quest, as can later be seen when the companions are chosen. The futility of physical force and might is also very evident in CE and indeed a very important theme in the whole of LotR is embodied in Elrond´s word:

 

The road must be trod, but it will be very hard. And neither strength nor wisdom will carry us far upon it. This quest may be attempted by the weak with as much hope as the strong. Yet such is oft the course of deeds that move the wheels of the world: small hands do them because they must, while the eyes of the great are elsewhere.

 

It would be interesting to know if Elrond here was making the distinction of Finrod (see below) and exactly what was his choice of word:

 

’That is one thing that Men call "hope",’ said Finrod. ’Amdir we call it, "looking up". But there is another which is founded deeper. Estel we call it, that is "trust". It is not defeated by the ways of the world, for it  does not come from experience, but from our nature and first being. (HoME 10: Athrabeth Finrod ah Andreth)

 

We know that estel is translated as hope in other instances of LotR, so the case is ambiguous. But if I should venture a guess, Elrond was thinking in terms of estel rather than amdir.

Kirinki54 26/Mar/2006 at 07:13 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

I think you are right, LEGOLAS. The unity of all the free Folks is a pre-requisite for setting out on the Quest, as can later be seen when the companions are chosen. The futility of physical force and might is also very evident in CE and indeed a very important theme in the whole of LotR is embodied in Elrond´s word:

 

The road must be trod, but it will be very hard. And neither strength nor wisdom will carry us far upon it. This quest may be attempted by the weak with as much hope as the strong. Yet such is oft the course of deeds that move the wheels of the world: small hands do them because they must, while the eyes of the great are elsewhere.

 

It would be interesting to know if Elrond here was making the distinction of Finrod (see below) and exactly what was his choice of word:

 

’That is one thing that Men call "hope",’ said Finrod. ’Amdir we call it, "looking up". But there is another which is founded deeper. Estel we call it, that is "trust". It is not defeated by the ways of the world, for it  does not come from experience, but from our nature and first being. (HoME 10: Athrabeth Finrod ah Andreth)

 

We know that estel is translated as hope in other instances of LotR, so the case is ambiguous. But if I should venture a guess, Elrond was thinking in terms of estel rather than amdir.

Endril 26/Mar/2006 at 07:23 AM
Healer of Imladris Points: 9193 Posts: 9362 Joined: 15/Jan/2006
Thanks for shareing my oppinion Kirinki ! I even heared on the Plaza tahat the Council of Elrond is one of the borring parts of LOTR. I think this part must be read a lot of times to understand it’s real meening. To me this council is the event that stays at the base of the entire fight against the great shadow.
Endril 26/Mar/2006 at 07:23 AM
Healer of Imladris Points: 9193 Posts: 9362 Joined: 15/Jan/2006
Thanks for shareing my oppinion Kirinki ! I even heared on the Plaza tahat the Council of Elrond is one of the borring parts of LOTR. I think this part must be read a lot of times to understand it’s real meening. To me this council is the event that stays at the base of the entire fight against the great shadow.
Niek Jans 27/Mar/2006 at 10:40 PM
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About CE:

I do think it is one of the most interesting chapters of the whole trilogy. First of all, a whole lot is explained in this chapter. The first time i read the book, well actually, the second time, i understood more because of this chapter. And the third time i  understood even more and so on. Every time i read that chapter more and more came clear to me. So i think it is one of the most important chapters.

In CE: They even explain what and who Tom Bombadil is. They also explain the importance of destroying the ring. Tom Bombadil is the only character/person in ME who can resist the Ring. He is standing above the ring. But even if they gave the ring to him, Sauron wil eventually destroy him. So the ring must be destroyed.

About Elrond being High King:

Kirinki: Could Elrond be High King? He is half man half elf. I dont know if he still could be HIgh King than? What about Glorfindel? Or maybe Cirdan?

Niek Jans 27/Mar/2006 at 10:40 PM
Archer of Imladris Points: 634 Posts: 348 Joined: 20/Mar/2006

About CE:

I do think it is one of the most interesting chapters of the whole trilogy. First of all, a whole lot is explained in this chapter. The first time i read the book, well actually, the second time, i understood more because of this chapter. And the third time i  understood even more and so on. Every time i read that chapter more and more came clear to me. So i think it is one of the most important chapters.

In CE: They even explain what and who Tom Bombadil is. They also explain the importance of destroying the ring. Tom Bombadil is the only character/person in ME who can resist the Ring. He is standing above the ring. But even if they gave the ring to him, Sauron wil eventually destroy him. So the ring must be destroyed.

About Elrond being High King:

Kirinki: Could Elrond be High King? He is half man half elf. I dont know if he still could be HIgh King than? What about Glorfindel? Or maybe Cirdan?

Daelin 29/Mar/2006 at 07:47 AM
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It is indeed one of the most interresting chapters of the trilogy. Much is explained in the chapter. Also there are a lot of topics brought up wich we all can discuss here at lotrplaza.com haha! The most important thing made clear is the reason why the ring MUST be destroyed i guess. Anyone who thinks different?
Daelin 29/Mar/2006 at 07:47 AM
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It is indeed one of the most interresting chapters of the trilogy. Much is explained in the chapter. Also there are a lot of topics brought up wich we all can discuss here at lotrplaza.com haha! The most important thing made clear is the reason why the ring MUST be destroyed i guess. Anyone who thinks different?
Kirinki54 29/Mar/2006 at 01:23 PM
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Niek Jans: In CE: They even explain what and who Tom Bombadil is.

No, I would not agree that they do - unfortunately. If you want to study the issue further, I recommend that you read the thread by Halfir in Advanced Lore, Collegium 1.

As to High King-ship, se posts further up. But you will mainly see that I am uncertain myself.

Daelin, in my opinion the two most important things to clarify is that the Ring MUST be destroyed, but also HOW. What other topics would you like to discuss?

Kirinki54 29/Mar/2006 at 01:23 PM
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Niek Jans: In CE: They even explain what and who Tom Bombadil is.

No, I would not agree that they do - unfortunately. If you want to study the issue further, I recommend that you read the thread by Halfir in Advanced Lore, Collegium 1.

As to High King-ship, se posts further up. But you will mainly see that I am uncertain myself.

Daelin, in my opinion the two most important things to clarify is that the Ring MUST be destroyed, but also HOW. What other topics would you like to discuss?

jrmhaldir 30/Mar/2006 at 10:46 AM
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I like "the council of elrond" ’cause it explains alot about the one ring’s story and how elrond’s story ties together with the one ring. i don’t know if the story about one ring is as deeply explained anywhere else, if so i must have missed it, but this chapter is very informative and helped me out alot!
jrmhaldir 30/Mar/2006 at 10:46 AM
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I like "the council of elrond" ’cause it explains alot about the one ring’s story and how elrond’s story ties together with the one ring. i don’t know if the story about one ring is as deeply explained anywhere else, if so i must have missed it, but this chapter is very informative and helped me out alot!
Arduvei 02/Apr/2006 at 06:10 PM
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The council of elrond is an essential part of the story, but it is also an interesting one, as it tells about the rest of the world of middle earth.
Arduvei 02/Apr/2006 at 06:10 PM
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The council of elrond is an essential part of the story, but it is also an interesting one, as it tells about the rest of the world of middle earth.
Niek Jans 04/Apr/2006 at 01:12 AM
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Well i got a topic Kirinki:

In CE there is explained why the Dwarves cannot aid Gondor or any other nation in war  with Sauron. Gloin and co tell about the messenger of Sauron, who will return one more time. Sauron asked the Dwarves to take his side, in reward some of the lost Dwarven Rings will be returned to the Dwarves. If they dont accept, they would face war.. Gloin and co come to ask for Elronds oppinion. But does this really explain that there was a war in wich the Dwarves were forced?

Also Boromir was confronted with a prophecy. I dont remember the full verse, but it had to do something with Isildur’s Bane and a Halfling. I cannot get to my books right now. Maybe you can?

About Tom Bombadil, the following is explained: He is the First, as he will be the Last. It explained enough for me. No we dont know exactly what or who he is. But more, then before the CE

Niek Jans 04/Apr/2006 at 01:12 AM
Archer of Imladris Points: 634 Posts: 348 Joined: 20/Mar/2006

Well i got a topic Kirinki:

In CE there is explained why the Dwarves cannot aid Gondor or any other nation in war  with Sauron. Gloin and co tell about the messenger of Sauron, who will return one more time. Sauron asked the Dwarves to take his side, in reward some of the lost Dwarven Rings will be returned to the Dwarves. If they dont accept, they would face war.. Gloin and co come to ask for Elronds oppinion. But does this really explain that there was a war in wich the Dwarves were forced?

Also Boromir was confronted with a prophecy. I dont remember the full verse, but it had to do something with Isildur’s Bane and a Halfling. I cannot get to my books right now. Maybe you can?

About Tom Bombadil, the following is explained: He is the First, as he will be the Last. It explained enough for me. No we dont know exactly what or who he is. But more, then before the CE

Ankala Teaweed 04/Apr/2006 at 06:06 PM
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It was my favorite chapter for "dipping in" for many years. Oh, it really is the pivotal chapter as everything is revealed! All the questions brought to the table by those who attend were addressed. And yet, who called them all to Rivendell? Some of them sought the wisdom of Elrond; yet then there is Boromir who is seeking the meaning of the verse heard in his and his brother’s dreams. All were already aware of the growing threat of Mordor. Yet all things concerning the Ring were put together in the testimonies and histories told by the hobbits and Gandalf and Aragorn--it was the full story told for the first time (excepting that Elrond had already heard it from Gandalf and Aragorn). And only then could those present fully understand their joint danger.

But Niek Jans, it does not say that the Dwarves cannot aid any nation in war with Sauron. Gloin describes the visits of the emissary(ies) of Sauron wanting information on this smallest of rings, and so forth. Basically, the Dwarves put them off and sent to Elrond to have counsel on the developments. (They did not later go forth to the war, as it came to them. There was fighting in Dale and near to the Lonely Mountain itself.)

 

Ankala Teaweed 04/Apr/2006 at 06:06 PM
March Warden of the Shire Points: 6116 Posts: 4487 Joined: 15/Apr/2002

It was my favorite chapter for "dipping in" for many years. Oh, it really is the pivotal chapter as everything is revealed! All the questions brought to the table by those who attend were addressed. And yet, who called them all to Rivendell? Some of them sought the wisdom of Elrond; yet then there is Boromir who is seeking the meaning of the verse heard in his and his brother’s dreams. All were already aware of the growing threat of Mordor. Yet all things concerning the Ring were put together in the testimonies and histories told by the hobbits and Gandalf and Aragorn--it was the full story told for the first time (excepting that Elrond had already heard it from Gandalf and Aragorn). And only then could those present fully understand their joint danger.

But Niek Jans, it does not say that the Dwarves cannot aid any nation in war with Sauron. Gloin describes the visits of the emissary(ies) of Sauron wanting information on this smallest of rings, and so forth. Basically, the Dwarves put them off and sent to Elrond to have counsel on the developments. (They did not later go forth to the war, as it came to them. There was fighting in Dale and near to the Lonely Mountain itself.)

 

Tuarwen 05/Apr/2006 at 11:55 AM
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It was funny that I found this post because I just finished this chapter today.  I have to say I couldn’t put it down...it would be hard to because so much info is given that if you stopped you would almost forget all the info you just read.  Previously, before I read this chapter, I "studied" the timeline in the appendices...that helped quite a bit when I read the Council of Elrond.  Anyways, I thought it was very, very interesting, and although it was many pages, I agree that it wouldn;t be the same without any of it!
Tuarwen 05/Apr/2006 at 11:55 AM
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It was funny that I found this post because I just finished this chapter today.  I have to say I couldn’t put it down...it would be hard to because so much info is given that if you stopped you would almost forget all the info you just read.  Previously, before I read this chapter, I "studied" the timeline in the appendices...that helped quite a bit when I read the Council of Elrond.  Anyways, I thought it was very, very interesting, and although it was many pages, I agree that it wouldn;t be the same without any of it!
Adammar 06/Apr/2006 at 12:53 PM
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Maybe not so much that the ring must be destroyed, that is obvious, but who would take the ring to destroy it and the plans for how they were to get there.  My first point was resolved because the ring had already corrupted Frodo enough to make him want it more even though in his heart Frodo honestly wanted to destroy it.  Gandalf kind of summed up my second point when he volunteered to be the Fellowship’s guide.  Gandalf most likely already knew or had some idea that Frodo was going to voluteer to take the ring to Mordor.  He and Aragorn had been planning the route they were going to take, but their plan was wiped aside when Saruman enterviened forcing the Fellowship to go through Moria.
Adammar 06/Apr/2006 at 12:53 PM
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Maybe not so much that the ring must be destroyed, that is obvious, but who would take the ring to destroy it and the plans for how they were to get there.  My first point was resolved because the ring had already corrupted Frodo enough to make him want it more even though in his heart Frodo honestly wanted to destroy it.  Gandalf kind of summed up my second point when he volunteered to be the Fellowship’s guide.  Gandalf most likely already knew or had some idea that Frodo was going to voluteer to take the ring to Mordor.  He and Aragorn had been planning the route they were going to take, but their plan was wiped aside when Saruman enterviened forcing the Fellowship to go through Moria.
Kirinki54 07/Apr/2006 at 02:22 PM
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CE is chapter that describes the exchange of information from many sources. I was pondering not only that, but also the many different forms in which that information is conveyed. We have the normal story-telling of what characters have experienced; what they witnessed themselves. They also relate second-hand information, or sometimes hearsay and rumours. (The latter might be falsified by information from better sources.) Well, perhaps nothing odd about that, except that the messenger might be of races only found in Faëry, even speaking animals.

 

But then we also have other sources in other forms: an ancient document by Isildur, a poem by Bilbo, a verse on a Ring, elements of translation between fictitious languages, an ominous dream that also contains a prophecy… It seems to me that one of the tools that Tolkien used to snare us into a perspective of enchantment is the readiness by the characters in CE to accept those other forms of communication as just as valid as a ‘normal’ dialogue between highly rational beings. This is their real life world, and we are drawn deeper and deeper into it. And by accepting it, we will never be the same. Now, this is real literary magic!

 

Adammar, I do not agree that destroying that Ring was ’obvious’; it took a lot of debate to reach a consensus on that point. As Ann Kalagon remarked, the meeting served to bring most of the characters to a full understanding after coming to Imladris for their specific reason. And I agree, one of the most tantalizing issues are, who called them?

Kirinki54 07/Apr/2006 at 02:22 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

CE is chapter that describes the exchange of information from many sources. I was pondering not only that, but also the many different forms in which that information is conveyed. We have the normal story-telling of what characters have experienced; what they witnessed themselves. They also relate second-hand information, or sometimes hearsay and rumours. (The latter might be falsified by information from better sources.) Well, perhaps nothing odd about that, except that the messenger might be of races only found in Faëry, even speaking animals.

 

But then we also have other sources in other forms: an ancient document by Isildur, a poem by Bilbo, a verse on a Ring, elements of translation between fictitious languages, an ominous dream that also contains a prophecy… It seems to me that one of the tools that Tolkien used to snare us into a perspective of enchantment is the readiness by the characters in CE to accept those other forms of communication as just as valid as a ‘normal’ dialogue between highly rational beings. This is their real life world, and we are drawn deeper and deeper into it. And by accepting it, we will never be the same. Now, this is real literary magic!

 

Adammar, I do not agree that destroying that Ring was ’obvious’; it took a lot of debate to reach a consensus on that point. As Ann Kalagon remarked, the meeting served to bring most of the characters to a full understanding after coming to Imladris for their specific reason. And I agree, one of the most tantalizing issues are, who called them?

Adammar 10/Apr/2006 at 12:39 PM
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Kirinki54... but did Elrond not say that the ring must be destroyed and that quote was one of the first things he said.
Adammar 10/Apr/2006 at 12:39 PM
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Kirinki54... but did Elrond not say that the ring must be destroyed and that quote was one of the first things he said.
Mithrandír 12/Apr/2006 at 10:25 AM
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i think whoever gave the replys that the council of elrond in the fellowship of the ring is boring is quite stupid and knows nothing of lord of the rings.it gives you an intresting and on some parts amazing knowledge and background of rivindell, the hall of fire and lorien, the chamber of fire.it delves more and more into the thing concerning the things the fellowsip of the ring had been doing since the incident of weathertop with frodos harmful attack by the witch king, and when he had to put it on to save himself but ended up harming himself.

it tells of the meeting of gandalf and radagast on the borders of mirkwood, when saruman gave rhadagast the erand of telling that he should see him at once in the tower of orthanc.

anyway, the council was not blunt and boring.

<<Nienna edit:  Please refrain from calling people "stupid."  You may disagree with them and state your reasons for doing so, but name-calling will not be tolerated.>>

Mithrandír 12/Apr/2006 at 10:25 AM
Linguist of Lothlorien Points: 3280 Posts: 3291 Joined: 13/Mar/2006

i think whoever gave the replys that the council of elrond in the fellowship of the ring is boring is quite stupid and knows nothing of lord of the rings.it gives you an intresting and on some parts amazing knowledge and background of rivindell, the hall of fire and lorien, the chamber of fire.it delves more and more into the thing concerning the things the fellowsip of the ring had been doing since the incident of weathertop with frodos harmful attack by the witch king, and when he had to put it on to save himself but ended up harming himself.

it tells of the meeting of gandalf and radagast on the borders of mirkwood, when saruman gave rhadagast the erand of telling that he should see him at once in the tower of orthanc.

anyway, the council was not blunt and boring.

<<Nienna edit:  Please refrain from calling people "stupid."  You may disagree with them and state your reasons for doing so, but name-calling will not be tolerated.>>

mithrandir_pp 14/Apr/2006 at 10:31 PM
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guys, i jus read that the book is more important than the chapters, n i totally  agree.. i mean, it’s all about maintaining the continuity of the storyline, isn’t it? of course, the fact that the chapter is one of the most important and the most interesting in the book accounts for something, rite? here is whare we learn about how the one ring came into being at all, it’s entire journey to frodo, and how things stand today(or of that day, to be precise). we all get a bit of  "eye-openers", don’t we? so to all who think the chapter is too long or boring, how else wud u understand the book and whatever happens later?

mithrandir_pp 14/Apr/2006 at 10:31 PM
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guys, i jus read that the book is more important than the chapters, n i totally  agree.. i mean, it’s all about maintaining the continuity of the storyline, isn’t it? of course, the fact that the chapter is one of the most important and the most interesting in the book accounts for something, rite? here is whare we learn about how the one ring came into being at all, it’s entire journey to frodo, and how things stand today(or of that day, to be precise). we all get a bit of  "eye-openers", don’t we? so to all who think the chapter is too long or boring, how else wud u understand the book and whatever happens later?

Alkin 15/Apr/2006 at 12:22 PM
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Well The Council Of Elrond is a pivitol chapter and there is a lot of story revealed there. I think that most people are mistaking bordome for a kind of over burdened feeling. Since there is so much stuff in that chapter that it is hard to process most of teh story and people might just want hte chapter to be over so thjey skip a lot of it. I know i skip Gandalf’s narritive when i read it. so that is wht I think about Council of Elrond. 
Alkin 15/Apr/2006 at 12:22 PM
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Well The Council Of Elrond is a pivitol chapter and there is a lot of story revealed there. I think that most people are mistaking bordome for a kind of over burdened feeling. Since there is so much stuff in that chapter that it is hard to process most of teh story and people might just want hte chapter to be over so thjey skip a lot of it. I know i skip Gandalf’s narritive when i read it. so that is wht I think about Council of Elrond. 
Lindir89 23/Apr/2006 at 08:11 AM
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I agree that the council of elrond is a very important part of the book, and for me at least it isn’t boring.......now.  When i first read the book, i had very little outside knowledge of the lord of the rings book, and thus was very confused, and spent a great deal of time trying to get through the slow moving, information-intense chapter of the council of elrond.

I personally think that the books in general are more interesting and much more enjoyable once one has a lot of knowledge about middle earth, and then can more easily understand what is going on, and i think the chapter which is the quintessential example of this is the council of elrond chapter.

therefore, i also think that it is far to easy for all of us, who obviously take great interest in the lord of the rings, and have lots of outside knowledge, to say that the chapter isn’t slow moving or boring.  it isn’t......for us.

Lindir89 23/Apr/2006 at 08:11 AM
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I agree that the council of elrond is a very important part of the book, and for me at least it isn’t boring.......now.  When i first read the book, i had very little outside knowledge of the lord of the rings book, and thus was very confused, and spent a great deal of time trying to get through the slow moving, information-intense chapter of the council of elrond.

I personally think that the books in general are more interesting and much more enjoyable once one has a lot of knowledge about middle earth, and then can more easily understand what is going on, and i think the chapter which is the quintessential example of this is the council of elrond chapter.

therefore, i also think that it is far to easy for all of us, who obviously take great interest in the lord of the rings, and have lots of outside knowledge, to say that the chapter isn’t slow moving or boring.  it isn’t......for us.

Brandywine74 26/Apr/2006 at 06:27 AM
Foolhardy Ent of Fangorn Points: 1291 Posts: 562 Joined: 20/Apr/2006

I’ve always loved the councilof Elrond- eversice I first read the books. At the council you get a complete history of the ring up to that point and find out about Golluma abit more. You hear what happened to Gandalf and hear a little about how Sauron is searching for the ring through the dwarves etc.

In short, you get a glimpse of the great story Frodo is now part of and what must be done to destroy the ring. The full weight of the situation is finally brought to bear.

I often find myself re-reading this chapter. I find all the history fascinating. I suppose because I find actual history very interesting. I guess that’s one of the great appeals of LOTR to me. It really does read like history. Tolkien knew just jow to write it- hence he is a genius.

Brandywine74 26/Apr/2006 at 06:27 AM
Foolhardy Ent of Fangorn Points: 1291 Posts: 562 Joined: 20/Apr/2006

I’ve always loved the councilof Elrond- eversice I first read the books. At the council you get a complete history of the ring up to that point and find out about Golluma abit more. You hear what happened to Gandalf and hear a little about how Sauron is searching for the ring through the dwarves etc.

In short, you get a glimpse of the great story Frodo is now part of and what must be done to destroy the ring. The full weight of the situation is finally brought to bear.

I often find myself re-reading this chapter. I find all the history fascinating. I suppose because I find actual history very interesting. I guess that’s one of the great appeals of LOTR to me. It really does read like history. Tolkien knew just jow to write it- hence he is a genius.

Aredhriel 26/Apr/2006 at 11:24 AM
Scribe of Minas Tirith Points: 2724 Posts: 1593 Joined: 31/May/2005
I always found the Council of Elrond to be one of my favorite chapters in the Fellowship of the Ring simply because we are introduced to so many new characters who will later hold great importance (i.e. Gimli, Legolas, Boromir) and at least in my understanding, it was the first time that the reader became truly aware of the grave danger that Frodo was in and the huge undertaking of his quest.
Aredhriel 26/Apr/2006 at 11:24 AM
Scribe of Minas Tirith Points: 2724 Posts: 1593 Joined: 31/May/2005
I always found the Council of Elrond to be one of my favorite chapters in the Fellowship of the Ring simply because we are introduced to so many new characters who will later hold great importance (i.e. Gimli, Legolas, Boromir) and at least in my understanding, it was the first time that the reader became truly aware of the grave danger that Frodo was in and the huge undertaking of his quest.
Durin of Moria 29/Apr/2006 at 08:32 AM
Scribe of Erebor Points: 467 Posts: 260 Joined: 24/Mar/2006
The council might be a gathering of all people on the light side.It may establish as when Mordor became stronger,Elrond and his army flee from Mordor to places around Rivendell.Then the eye became a great threat to them,as it could see very far.Elrond knew of the danger,so order his men to dig out Rivendell,which can hide from the view of the eye,and people soon found out that Rivendell is a very good place to gather,so establish the council which gather there to dicuss threats that Middle-Earth  is facing.
Durin of Moria 29/Apr/2006 at 08:32 AM
Scribe of Erebor Points: 467 Posts: 260 Joined: 24/Mar/2006
The council might be a gathering of all people on the light side.It may establish as when Mordor became stronger,Elrond and his army flee from Mordor to places around Rivendell.Then the eye became a great threat to them,as it could see very far.Elrond knew of the danger,so order his men to dig out Rivendell,which can hide from the view of the eye,and people soon found out that Rivendell is a very good place to gather,so establish the council which gather there to dicuss threats that Middle-Earth  is facing.
Ambarvänye 29/Apr/2006 at 03:56 PM
Mercenary of Minas Tirith Points: 473 Posts: 124 Joined: 29/Oct/2005

I think the first time you read the council of elrond it doesn’t hold much importance and can often be confusing with all the new names and places. However, after you have read the rest and perhaps even the sil and others it begins to form one of the most interesting and important chapters. It fills in all the gaps and really helps to understsnd the whole story. As others have said it is the basis for the rest of the plot and to me is where it actually starts getting interesting- I hate to admit it but I don’t find the journey with the hobbits overly enjoyable. It is where we meet the fellowship for the first time and really get to know all of the races (well at least all the good ones).

I also think it depends on what type of person you are and which texts you enjoy the most for instance I love reading dialogue and action but I often skim past lengthy descriptions. For those who don’t like dialogue this chapter may seem slightly boring at first - though I can’t relate to this view. I think dialogue gives the most insight into people’s character.

I also havent read the books for a while so I can’t remember too much in detail of the CE but I’m coming up to it again now!

 

Ambarvänye 29/Apr/2006 at 03:56 PM
Mercenary of Minas Tirith Points: 473 Posts: 124 Joined: 29/Oct/2005

I think the first time you read the council of elrond it doesn’t hold much importance and can often be confusing with all the new names and places. However, after you have read the rest and perhaps even the sil and others it begins to form one of the most interesting and important chapters. It fills in all the gaps and really helps to understsnd the whole story. As others have said it is the basis for the rest of the plot and to me is where it actually starts getting interesting- I hate to admit it but I don’t find the journey with the hobbits overly enjoyable. It is where we meet the fellowship for the first time and really get to know all of the races (well at least all the good ones).

I also think it depends on what type of person you are and which texts you enjoy the most for instance I love reading dialogue and action but I often skim past lengthy descriptions. For those who don’t like dialogue this chapter may seem slightly boring at first - though I can’t relate to this view. I think dialogue gives the most insight into people’s character.

I also havent read the books for a while so I can’t remember too much in detail of the CE but I’m coming up to it again now!

 

Lucentorn 07/May/2006 at 07:27 AM
Messenger of Minas Tirith Points: 856 Posts: 861 Joined: 13/Feb/2004
Even though someone might find it boring, the chapter is essiential for understanding the remaining storyline. The forming of the Fellowship, Gandalf speaking the language of Mordor (which I particurly liked), and the introduction of all the new characters. You get to know much about the different characters, their opinions and so on. What they think what should happen to the Ring.
Lucentorn 07/May/2006 at 07:27 AM
Messenger of Minas Tirith Points: 856 Posts: 861 Joined: 13/Feb/2004
Even though someone might find it boring, the chapter is essiential for understanding the remaining storyline. The forming of the Fellowship, Gandalf speaking the language of Mordor (which I particurly liked), and the introduction of all the new characters. You get to know much about the different characters, their opinions and so on. What they think what should happen to the Ring.
Duiel 07/May/2006 at 11:43 PM
Fletcher of Lothlorien Points: 1507 Posts: 596 Joined: 30/Apr/2004
I think that every chapter in LotR has something quite different to offer. Some chapters are generally more exciting and fast moving, or full of beautiful descriptive prose, or whatever. The Coucil of Elrond is important because it establishes the Fellowship, the quest, the history, and whatever else has already been decided on this forum. But what I mean is that the chapter has an important function and a unique style. Although it may not be exciting (or at least after having read it many times before), it is no doubt interesting.
Duiel 07/May/2006 at 11:43 PM
Fletcher of Lothlorien Points: 1507 Posts: 596 Joined: 30/Apr/2004
I think that every chapter in LotR has something quite different to offer. Some chapters are generally more exciting and fast moving, or full of beautiful descriptive prose, or whatever. The Coucil of Elrond is important because it establishes the Fellowship, the quest, the history, and whatever else has already been decided on this forum. But what I mean is that the chapter has an important function and a unique style. Although it may not be exciting (or at least after having read it many times before), it is no doubt interesting.
Black Numenorian 16/May/2006 at 06:01 AM
Thief of Mordor Points: 301 Posts: 26 Joined: 01/May/2006
The chapter of the Council of Elrond is key to the LOTR.  without the chapter much history and important facts would have been omitted from the trilogy. 
Black Numenorian 16/May/2006 at 06:01 AM
Thief of Mordor Points: 301 Posts: 26 Joined: 01/May/2006
The chapter of the Council of Elrond is key to the LOTR.  without the chapter much history and important facts would have been omitted from the trilogy. 
Astarya Nolatari 23/May/2006 at 05:34 AM
Banned Points: 285 Posts: 43 Joined: 12/May/2006
I must agree with almost everybody else and say that without CE the story would lose its history, you even get a glimpse of what the characters are like, and what they will do in their future connections with the ring. It also adds some comic relief (Sam’s sudden appearance)
Astarya Nolatari 23/May/2006 at 05:34 AM
Banned Points: 285 Posts: 43 Joined: 12/May/2006
I must agree with almost everybody else and say that without CE the story would lose its history, you even get a glimpse of what the characters are like, and what they will do in their future connections with the ring. It also adds some comic relief (Sam’s sudden appearance)
Telacontar 23/May/2006 at 06:05 PM
Archer of Imladris Points: 362 Posts: 38 Joined: 12/May/2006

The Council of Elrond is pretty in depth about the history of Middle Earth, but if people think that is boring, I’d hate to see their reviews after reading the Silmarillion, which is THE HISTORY of Middle Earth in a pretty compact form.  I however did not think either was boring, all though reading twenty pages of dialouge can be an eyesore and it can get confusing if you start skimming.

Telacontar 23/May/2006 at 06:05 PM
Archer of Imladris Points: 362 Posts: 38 Joined: 12/May/2006

The Council of Elrond is pretty in depth about the history of Middle Earth, but if people think that is boring, I’d hate to see their reviews after reading the Silmarillion, which is THE HISTORY of Middle Earth in a pretty compact form.  I however did not think either was boring, all though reading twenty pages of dialouge can be an eyesore and it can get confusing if you start skimming.

Kirinki54 24/May/2006 at 01:41 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

Astarya Nolarati, the sudden appearance of Sam at the end of the chapter is like that of a Jack-in-the-box delivering the punch-line. This was a clever literary device with many functions. It was a perfect ending of the chapter by switching perspectives; it helped to mitigate the severity of the issue by bringing in a bit of humour; it added a touch of Hobbit-ness; it established Sam solidly as both the would-be and the actual companion to Frodo; it was a sign of hope in the face of a seemingly hopeless task. One might also perceive it as a sign of things to come: the often overlooked but in reality resourceful Sam would come to surprise the readers on many an occasion further on.

Kirinki54 24/May/2006 at 01:41 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

Astarya Nolarati, the sudden appearance of Sam at the end of the chapter is like that of a Jack-in-the-box delivering the punch-line. This was a clever literary device with many functions. It was a perfect ending of the chapter by switching perspectives; it helped to mitigate the severity of the issue by bringing in a bit of humour; it added a touch of Hobbit-ness; it established Sam solidly as both the would-be and the actual companion to Frodo; it was a sign of hope in the face of a seemingly hopeless task. One might also perceive it as a sign of things to come: the often overlooked but in reality resourceful Sam would come to surprise the readers on many an occasion further on.

Blue Goblin 25/May/2006 at 09:14 AM
Garment-crafter of Lothlorien Points: 613 Posts: 397 Joined: 01/May/2006
When I first read LOTR, I admit to being slightly bored with that chapter and was wondering why it was so long and felt that some things weren’t relevant, but now it is one of my favourite chapters in all three books put together and read it more than any other. My favourite part of the chapter is when Bilbo jupms up and says that "All that is gold does not glitter" poem to defend Aragorn, in a way.
Blue Goblin 25/May/2006 at 09:14 AM
Garment-crafter of Lothlorien Points: 613 Posts: 397 Joined: 01/May/2006

When I first read LOTR, I admit to being slightly bored with that chapter and was wondering why it was so long and felt that some things weren’t relevant, but now it is one of my favourite chapters in all three books put together and read it more than any other. My favourite part of the chapter is when Bilbo jupms up and says that "All that is gold does not glitter" poem to defend Aragorn, in a way.

<Yavanna edit:  Signature turned off.  Please email the admins if you don’t understand why you may not use this signature>

Jaz 30/May/2006 at 12:40 PM
Builder of the Shire Points: 1739 Posts: 720 Joined: 25/May/2006
The whole chapter is no doubt very clever and really sets you up to read the rest of the book. However, if you aren’t that clued up about Middle Earth, it does seem a bit bewildering at first. Much appreciated once it has been read though.
Jaz 30/May/2006 at 12:40 PM
Builder of the Shire Points: 1739 Posts: 720 Joined: 25/May/2006
The whole chapter is no doubt very clever and really sets you up to read the rest of the book. However, if you aren’t that clued up about Middle Earth, it does seem a bit bewildering at first. Much appreciated once it has been read though.
Earlendil 30/May/2006 at 05:51 PM
Horse-lord of the Mark Points: 1359 Posts: 554 Joined: 11/Apr/2006
I believe the problem spurs from some persons watching the films before reading the book. They take for granted all the information that is vital to the story structure represented in the "Council of Elrond". The only reason they find it boring is because they have been introduced to a different short not so wonderfully edited version first. If they read the book for what it is and refrain from comparing it to the films, they might see the necessity for every word that is written there. I suppose it is easy for people to forget that this book was written for dreamers by a brilliant dreamer and before TV one had to use his own imagination fueled by well versed words.
Earlendil 30/May/2006 at 05:51 PM
Horse-lord of the Mark Points: 1359 Posts: 554 Joined: 11/Apr/2006
I believe the problem spurs from some persons watching the films before reading the book. They take for granted all the information that is vital to the story structure represented in the "Council of Elrond". The only reason they find it boring is because they have been introduced to a different short not so wonderfully edited version first. If they read the book for what it is and refrain from comparing it to the films, they might see the necessity for every word that is written there. I suppose it is easy for people to forget that this book was written for dreamers by a brilliant dreamer and before TV one had to use his own imagination fueled by well versed words.
Nenuphar 03/Jun/2006 at 06:08 AM
Guardian of Imladris Points: 4435 Posts: 1966 Joined: 13/Aug/2005
Earlendil, I have to say that I disagree with you a bit. Some people who complain about the CE have seen the movies first, but others haven’t. It’s a difficult chapter with a lot to chew on.

First of all, I must say that I have been converted to the same p.o.v. as many others who have written. I now greatly appreciate this chapter and love reading and rereading it. As others have said, it provides a great many introductions to characters, countries, and issues that must be dealt with. We learn about the interactions of various characters and races, often in quick sentences that cover what some authors would take pages to describe. All of this shows the mastery of Tolkien’s writing.

Furthermore, it’s an excellent chapter to use as a reference. I often find myself turning to this chapter to remember details leading up to the main points of the story, since they are stated here more concisely than in most other places.

However, there is no denying that CE is a difficult chapter, at least on your first or second try through. As an introduction to Middle-earth (a more complete intro than we’ve had so far), it flies over details at lightning speed in a way that is hard for someone reading the book for the first time (or even after having already read it, if they aren’t familiar with the Sil and such).

For example, in Elrond’s history lesson, he mentions the following names (of places, people, and weapons): Numenor, Elendil, Isildur, Anarion, Arnor, Gondor, Anduin, Sauron, Mordor, Gil-Galad, Beleriand, Thangorodrim, Earendil, Gondolin, Elwing, Dior, Luthien, Doriath, Dagorlad, Aiglos, Narsil, and Orodruin, to list only those of the first page. The list continues in this same vein for another couple of pages (I counted 17 other names during the rest of his discourse, although I may not have counted accurately). Out of all of the names used here, the only ones that are really relevant for the LOTR series are Gondor, Sauron, Mordor, Osgiliath, Minis Ithil/Morgul, and Minas Anor/Tirith. Again, don’t take me wrong; I’m a solid Tolkien fan, and so find this section interesting. However, for a first-time reader it’s a bit difficult (especially when you’re trying to keep the names all straight and so many of them are similar).

Other characters are also introduced to the counsel who play a relatively small part in the rest of the book: Glorfindel, Galdor, Gloin (although he was introduced in the last book, so that’s a different story), and Erestor. Each of them speaks as well.

So what am I getting at? Again, please remember that now I love this chapter and much of the dialogue (I too appreciate good dialogue). However, it’s easy to get tangled up in all of the names and places that are mentioned, especially those who appear here and nowhere else (okay, so what’s the name of the guy in charge? Is it Elendil, Earendil, Elrond, or Erestor?). For a more understandable chapter (which is important, since as everyone has noted this is the key to a true understanding of the whole quest), it might have been easier had Tolkien not named so many names, for example (or had written some of it up in the Appendices instead).
Nenuphar 03/Jun/2006 at 06:08 AM
Guardian of Imladris Points: 4435 Posts: 1966 Joined: 13/Aug/2005
Earlendil, I have to say that I disagree with you a bit. Some people who complain about the CE have seen the movies first, but others haven’t. It’s a difficult chapter with a lot to chew on.

First of all, I must say that I have been converted to the same p.o.v. as many others who have written. I now greatly appreciate this chapter and love reading and rereading it. As others have said, it provides a great many introductions to characters, countries, and issues that must be dealt with. We learn about the interactions of various characters and races, often in quick sentences that cover what some authors would take pages to describe. All of this shows the mastery of Tolkien’s writing.

Furthermore, it’s an excellent chapter to use as a reference. I often find myself turning to this chapter to remember details leading up to the main points of the story, since they are stated here more concisely than in most other places.

However, there is no denying that CE is a difficult chapter, at least on your first or second try through. As an introduction to Middle-earth (a more complete intro than we’ve had so far), it flies over details at lightning speed in a way that is hard for someone reading the book for the first time (or even after having already read it, if they aren’t familiar with the Sil and such).

For example, in Elrond’s history lesson, he mentions the following names (of places, people, and weapons): Numenor, Elendil, Isildur, Anarion, Arnor, Gondor, Anduin, Sauron, Mordor, Gil-Galad, Beleriand, Thangorodrim, Earendil, Gondolin, Elwing, Dior, Luthien, Doriath, Dagorlad, Aiglos, Narsil, and Orodruin, to list only those of the first page. The list continues in this same vein for another couple of pages (I counted 17 other names during the rest of his discourse, although I may not have counted accurately). Out of all of the names used here, the only ones that are really relevant for the LOTR series are Gondor, Sauron, Mordor, Osgiliath, Minis Ithil/Morgul, and Minas Anor/Tirith. Again, don’t take me wrong; I’m a solid Tolkien fan, and so find this section interesting. However, for a first-time reader it’s a bit difficult (especially when you’re trying to keep the names all straight and so many of them are similar).

Other characters are also introduced to the counsel who play a relatively small part in the rest of the book: Glorfindel, Galdor, Gloin (although he was introduced in the last book, so that’s a different story), and Erestor. Each of them speaks as well.

So what am I getting at? Again, please remember that now I love this chapter and much of the dialogue (I too appreciate good dialogue). However, it’s easy to get tangled up in all of the names and places that are mentioned, especially those who appear here and nowhere else (okay, so what’s the name of the guy in charge? Is it Elendil, Earendil, Elrond, or Erestor?). For a more understandable chapter (which is important, since as everyone has noted this is the key to a true understanding of the whole quest), it might have been easier had Tolkien not named so many names, for example (or had written some of it up in the Appendices instead).
Kirinki54 05/Jun/2006 at 11:30 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

In “The Lord of the Rings A Reader’s Companion”, Wayne Hammond and Christina Scull quotes from “J.R.R. Tolkien: Author of the Century” by Tom Shippey. He wrote on ‘The Council of Elrond’ that it

 

is a largely unappreciated tour de force, whose success may be gauged by the fact that few pause to recognize its complexity. It breaks, furthermore, most of the rules which might be given to an apprentice writer. For one thing, though it is fifteen thousand words long, in it nothing happens; it consists entirely of people talking. For another, it has an unusual number of speakers present (twelve), the majority of them (seven) unknown to the reader and appearing for the first time. Just to make things more difficult, the longest speech, by Gandalf, which takes up half the total, contains direct quotation from seven more speakers, or writers, all of them apart from Butterbur and Gaffer Gamgee new to the story, and some of them (Saruman, Denethor) to be extremely important to it later. Other speakers, like Glóin, give quotations from yet more speakers, Dáin and Sauron´s messenger. Like so many committee meetings, this chapter could very easily have disintegrated, lost its way, or simply become too boring to follow. The fact that it does not is brought about by two things, Tolkien´s extremely firm grasp of the history… of Middle-earth; and his unusual ability to suggest cultural variation by differences in mode of speech. [pp. 68-9]

 

Well, this paragraph alone sure puts Shippey´s book high on my list of purchases…

 

Shippey´s statistics are truly amazing when you think about it. While he undoubted also is right about the conclusions on why the CE did not ‘disintegrate’, one can always discuss if there were also other major reasons why this does not happen?

 

May I also comment that (of course) the chapter on ‘The Council of Elrond’ in ‘the Companion’ is extremely interesting reading, just like the rest of this book!

Kirinki54 05/Jun/2006 at 11:30 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

In “The Lord of the Rings A Reader’s Companion”, Wayne Hammond and Christina Scull quotes from “J.R.R. Tolkien: Author of the Century” by Tom Shippey. He wrote on ‘The Council of Elrond’ that it

 

is a largely unappreciated tour de force, whose success may be gauged by the fact that few pause to recognize its complexity. It breaks, furthermore, most of the rules which might be given to an apprentice writer. For one thing, though it is fifteen thousand words long, in it nothing happens; it consists entirely of people talking. For another, it has an unusual number of speakers present (twelve), the majority of them (seven) unknown to the reader and appearing for the first time. Just to make things more difficult, the longest speech, by Gandalf, which takes up half the total, contains direct quotation from seven more speakers, or writers, all of them apart from Butterbur and Gaffer Gamgee new to the story, and some of them (Saruman, Denethor) to be extremely important to it later. Other speakers, like Glóin, give quotations from yet more speakers, Dáin and Sauron´s messenger. Like so many committee meetings, this chapter could very easily have disintegrated, lost its way, or simply become too boring to follow. The fact that it does not is brought about by two things, Tolkien´s extremely firm grasp of the history… of Middle-earth; and his unusual ability to suggest cultural variation by differences in mode of speech. [pp. 68-9]

 

Well, this paragraph alone sure puts Shippey´s book high on my list of purchases…

 

Shippey´s statistics are truly amazing when you think about it. While he undoubted also is right about the conclusions on why the CE did not ‘disintegrate’, one can always discuss if there were also other major reasons why this does not happen?

 

May I also comment that (of course) the chapter on ‘The Council of Elrond’ in ‘the Companion’ is extremely interesting reading, just like the rest of this book!

great earendil 21/Sep/2006 at 05:33 AM
Banned Points: 822 Posts: 170 Joined: 21/Sep/2006
The council of elrond is one of my favourite chapters in the whole of the lord of the rings saga..........it is definitely a very good and intresting chapter and anybody who tells it is a boring chapter is one person with whom i’ll not look eye to eye.....i mean guys it’s too good even if it is long.
                                                                   The whole concept of such a council is great for it seeks to reunite all the free people’s of middle earth........let’s see the representatives:
Elrond - convener
Erestor - one of Elrond’s advisors
Gandalf - recently escaped from Saruman at Isengard
Aragorn - having escorted Frodo and his companions from Bree
Frodo Baggins, Hobbit - the Ring-bearer
Bilbo Baggins, older cousin and adopted father of Frodo, finder and former bearer of the Ring, long resident in Rivendell
     Boromir of Gondor - arrived in response to a prophecy
     Glóin of the Dwarves - arrived seeking counsel after a messenger from Mordor sought news of the Ring from the Dwarves
     Gimli the Dwarf, son of Gloin, accompanying his father
     Legolas, son of Thranduil, an Elf of the Woodland Realm - came to tell Elrond that Gollum had escaped from the Elves’ captivity
     Glorfindel - a powerful Elf-lord of Rivendell, the famed Balrog-slayer of Gondolin
     Samwise Gamgee - Frodo’s companion; not invited, he secretly eavesdropped on the Council until he gave himself away
     Galdor of the Havens, messenger of Círdan.
                  thus we see that all the races of middle earth are represented( of cousre all those against sauron.......you cannot expect orcs and trools to come to the council).
               the whole story of the ring is told briefly in the council and also a brief "speech" or whatever is given by most of the members present. also, all the important and power wielding people are present there except perhaps galadriel and celeborn. cirdan of course was represented by galdor.
great earendil 21/Sep/2006 at 05:33 AM
Banned Points: 822 Posts: 170 Joined: 21/Sep/2006
The council of elrond is one of my favourite chapters in the whole of the lord of the rings saga..........it is definitely a very good and intresting chapter and anybody who tells it is a boring chapter is one person with whom i’ll not look eye to eye.....i mean guys it’s too good even if it is long.
                                                                   The whole concept of such a council is great for it seeks to reunite all the free people’s of middle earth........let’s see the representatives:
Elrond - convener
Erestor - one of Elrond’s advisors
Gandalf - recently escaped from Saruman at Isengard
Aragorn - having escorted Frodo and his companions from Bree
Frodo Baggins, Hobbit - the Ring-bearer
Bilbo Baggins, older cousin and adopted father of Frodo, finder and former bearer of the Ring, long resident in Rivendell
     Boromir of Gondor - arrived in response to a prophecy
     Glóin of the Dwarves - arrived seeking counsel after a messenger from Mordor sought news of the Ring from the Dwarves
     Gimli the Dwarf, son of Gloin, accompanying his father
     Legolas, son of Thranduil, an Elf of the Woodland Realm - came to tell Elrond that Gollum had escaped from the Elves’ captivity
     Glorfindel - a powerful Elf-lord of Rivendell, the famed Balrog-slayer of Gondolin
     Samwise Gamgee - Frodo’s companion; not invited, he secretly eavesdropped on the Council until he gave himself away
     Galdor of the Havens, messenger of Círdan.
                  thus we see that all the races of middle earth are represented( of cousre all those against sauron.......you cannot expect orcs and trools to come to the council).
               the whole story of the ring is told briefly in the council and also a brief "speech" or whatever is given by most of the members present. also, all the important and power wielding people are present there except perhaps galadriel and celeborn. cirdan of course was represented by galdor.
drigael 27/Sep/2006 at 09:17 AM
Scout of Lothlorien Points: 75 Posts: 2 Joined: 27/Sep/2006

I agree with all the points made about CE.  I would just add that the beauty of this chapter for me is that we get the history from a first hand account.  It’s not just the history, but its the history through the eyes of one who walked that path, thousands of years prior.  Awsome

drigael 27/Sep/2006 at 09:17 AM
Scout of Lothlorien Points: 75 Posts: 2 Joined: 27/Sep/2006

I agree with all the points made about CE.  I would just add that the beauty of this chapter for me is that we get the history from a first hand account.  It’s not just the history, but its the history through the eyes of one who walked that path, thousands of years prior.  Awsome

KingODuckingham 01/Oct/2006 at 10:32 PM
Grey Counsellor of Isengard Points: 15053 Posts: 15390 Joined: 27/Aug/2006
Anyone who says that the CE is boring is not a very deep LOTR fan. The CE is the epitome of Tolkien’s efforts, for it is the part of the story that shows the depth and richness of Tolkien’s world--its consistency and history, its lore and its power. Those who read the books for the fight scenes and the intense action might as well go read some cheap dime novel that doesn’t pretend to quality, but has lots of blood, gore, and whores. Without the CE, one just scratches the surface of Tolkien’s created world. With it, one gets a glimpse of its glory.
KingODuckingham 01/Oct/2006 at 10:32 PM
Grey Counsellor of Isengard Points: 15053 Posts: 15390 Joined: 27/Aug/2006
Anyone who says that the CE is boring is not a very deep LOTR fan. The CE is the epitome of Tolkien’s efforts, for it is the part of the story that shows the depth and richness of Tolkien’s world--its consistency and history, its lore and its power. Those who read the books for the fight scenes and the intense action might as well go read some cheap dime novel that doesn’t pretend to quality, but has lots of blood, gore, and whores. Without the CE, one just scratches the surface of Tolkien’s created world. With it, one gets a glimpse of its glory.
Telemanes 02/Oct/2006 at 10:24 AM
Apprentice of Minas Tirith Points: 193 Posts: 16 Joined: 26/Sep/2006

CE is vital to LotR and ME as a real place. Elrond, gandalf and aragorn know and realise that the ring must be destroyed and they use the CE to make everyone else realise that.

 this helps in the war against sauron and betters thir chance of destroying the ring. it also leads to the fellowship-the whole point of tolkeins first book of the trilogy!

the fellowship is made up of the free peoples (except ents who would be impracticle for a long journey). not only does this make it a ’fair’ represenation of saurons enemies but starts to create interspecie stability : the members of the fellowship are acting as ambassadors of their species to other species which is why elrond appoints younger members who are more adaptable. this is shown in legolas and gimli’s growing friendship as the epic progresses.

Telemanes 02/Oct/2006 at 10:24 AM
Apprentice of Minas Tirith Points: 193 Posts: 16 Joined: 26/Sep/2006

CE is vital to LotR and ME as a real place. Elrond, gandalf and aragorn know and realise that the ring must be destroyed and they use the CE to make everyone else realise that.

 this helps in the war against sauron and betters thir chance of destroying the ring. it also leads to the fellowship-the whole point of tolkeins first book of the trilogy!

the fellowship is made up of the free peoples (except ents who would be impracticle for a long journey). not only does this make it a ’fair’ represenation of saurons enemies but starts to create interspecie stability : the members of the fellowship are acting as ambassadors of their species to other species which is why elrond appoints younger members who are more adaptable. this is shown in legolas and gimli’s growing friendship as the epic progresses.

Kirinki54 02/Oct/2006 at 02:01 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005
Quote: Originally posted by Telemanes on Monday, October 02, 2006

CE is vital to LotR and ME as a real place. Elrond, gandalf and aragorn know and realise that the ring must be destroyed and they use the CE to make everyone else realise that.


This is an interesting observation, and one that I totally agree with. If you look at the course of the council and they way the participants argue, it is obvious these three act in common understanding whereas even the Elves - yes, even a councillor of Elrond like Erestor - seem undecided and must be convinced of the proper way forward. That leads to a rather startling conclusion: that even in Elrond´s own household subsequent events had been treated with the utmost secrecy. Or how can it be construed?
Kirinki54 02/Oct/2006 at 02:01 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005
Quote: Originally posted by Telemanes on Monday, October 02, 2006

CE is vital to LotR and ME as a real place. Elrond, gandalf and aragorn know and realise that the ring must be destroyed and they use the CE to make everyone else realise that.


This is an interesting observation, and one that I totally agree with. If you look at the course of the council and they way the participants argue, it is obvious these three act in common understanding whereas even the Elves - yes, even a councillor of Elrond like Erestor - seem undecided and must be convinced of the proper way forward. That leads to a rather startling conclusion: that even in Elrond´s own household subsequent events had been treated with the utmost secrecy. Or how can it be construed?
Laielinwen 03/Oct/2006 at 07:20 AM
New Soul Points: 31115 Posts: 27324 Joined: 16/Mar/2002

Great thread
The first time I read the LOTR as a teenager it was my least favorite chapter. It bored me and I found it hard to get through. However... It now is my favorite chapter in the book. When you read a book for action and adventure or ’happenings’ then dialog isn’t the most exciting thing ever. Yet when you are really into the story and you appreciate the puzzle pieces that are provided to help make the big picture more clear you see just how vital this chapter is to the entire trilogy! So many wonderings and unanswered questions are explained and answered. Many that may not outright be answered leave the reader with an enlightened viewpoint.

I love how so many different characters from so many different  races are put together and function as one  body. As with any group there are disagreements and pre-established ideas on the parts of the characters regarding the other races and those individuals present. Yet we see melting ice and dialog. The beginnings of an unlikely group with an unlikely bond forming.

Laielinwen 03/Oct/2006 at 07:20 AM
New Soul Points: 31115 Posts: 27324 Joined: 16/Mar/2002

Great thread
The first time I read the LOTR as a teenager it was my least favorite chapter. It bored me and I found it hard to get through. However... It now is my favorite chapter in the book. When you read a book for action and adventure or ’happenings’ then dialog isn’t the most exciting thing ever. Yet when you are really into the story and you appreciate the puzzle pieces that are provided to help make the big picture more clear you see just how vital this chapter is to the entire trilogy! So many wonderings and unanswered questions are explained and answered. Many that may not outright be answered leave the reader with an enlightened viewpoint.

I love how so many different characters from so many different  races are put together and function as one  body. As with any group there are disagreements and pre-established ideas on the parts of the characters regarding the other races and those individuals present. Yet we see melting ice and dialog. The beginnings of an unlikely group with an unlikely bond forming.

Telemanes 05/Oct/2006 at 01:55 PM
Apprentice of Minas Tirith Points: 193 Posts: 16 Joined: 26/Sep/2006

how can it be construed, kirinki54?

meybe elrond never told Erestor his thoughts to make  everyone on the council have an equal footing or maybe he told him everything but Erestor didn’t understand the subject or realise what the point of the council was.

nobody knows except from tolkein im thinking!

Telemanes 05/Oct/2006 at 01:55 PM
Apprentice of Minas Tirith Points: 193 Posts: 16 Joined: 26/Sep/2006

how can it be construed, kirinki54?

meybe elrond never told Erestor his thoughts to make  everyone on the council have an equal footing or maybe he told him everything but Erestor didn’t understand the subject or realise what the point of the council was.

nobody knows except from tolkein im thinking!

elendil elessar 06/Oct/2006 at 05:19 AM
Fletcher of Lothlorien Points: 1533 Posts: 4087 Joined: 13/Dec/2008
Regarding Elrond, Gandalf and Aragorn working together I do not think it comes from any preordered and shared intent. Let’s not forget that those three have the closest understanding of the One, and also that they have a common goal. Not only the destruction of the One, but the ascencion of Aragorn as High King and as a herald of the rise of Men.

Regarding the Council it is vital to the construction of the story and gives us the occation to access knowledge of the lands and custom of ME in a single chapter. Leaving room in the rest of the book for other embellishment but the main rails are set.
I found it interesting that no one represent Rohan, or Lorien. Those will later have a powerfull role to play, but give the author some more filling up to do. I think the all spreading of the historical, political and cultural background is fantastic. We are given a large inhalf dose on CE to understand the great lines, but have more coming the further we progress within the story. Giving an even deeper sense of a full Cosmogony.
elendil elessar 06/Oct/2006 at 05:19 AM
Fletcher of Lothlorien Points: 1533 Posts: 4087 Joined: 13/Dec/2008
Regarding Elrond, Gandalf and Aragorn working together I do not think it comes from any preordered and shared intent. Let’s not forget that those three have the closest understanding of the One, and also that they have a common goal. Not only the destruction of the One, but the ascencion of Aragorn as High King and as a herald of the rise of Men.

Regarding the Council it is vital to the construction of the story and gives us the occation to access knowledge of the lands and custom of ME in a single chapter. Leaving room in the rest of the book for other embellishment but the main rails are set.
I found it interesting that no one represent Rohan, or Lorien. Those will later have a powerfull role to play, but give the author some more filling up to do. I think the all spreading of the historical, political and cultural background is fantastic. We are given a large inhalf dose on CE to understand the great lines, but have more coming the further we progress within the story. Giving an even deeper sense of a full Cosmogony.
Laielinwen 09/Oct/2006 at 03:13 AM
New Soul Points: 31115 Posts: 27324 Joined: 16/Mar/2002

elendil elessar: I found it interesting that no one represent Rohan, or Lorien.

My thoughts on the fact that those places are not represented is that they ARE represented if the approach is to have representatives of the different races... men, elves, dwarves, hobbits... instead of reps from the various geographical locations or communities. I’ve always seen the Council as a group that had members of the various races... because while the problem did affect the various homes/locations of middle-earth, it affected each race as well.

Laielinwen 09/Oct/2006 at 03:13 AM
New Soul Points: 31115 Posts: 27324 Joined: 16/Mar/2002

elendil elessar: I found it interesting that no one represent Rohan, or Lorien.

My thoughts on the fact that those places are not represented is that they ARE represented if the approach is to have representatives of the different races... men, elves, dwarves, hobbits... instead of reps from the various geographical locations or communities. I’ve always seen the Council as a group that had members of the various races... because while the problem did affect the various homes/locations of middle-earth, it affected each race as well.

Nenarye 09/Oct/2006 at 06:55 AM
Defender of Imladris Points: 839 Posts: 376 Joined: 08/Oct/2006
I don’t think I really need to give any "opinion" on this because then I would just be repeating everything everyone else has said . . .

But I did enjoy this chapter quite a bit.
Nenarye 09/Oct/2006 at 06:55 AM
Defender of Imladris Points: 839 Posts: 376 Joined: 08/Oct/2006
I don’t think I really need to give any "opinion" on this because then I would just be repeating everything everyone else has said . . .

But I did enjoy this chapter quite a bit.
Brandywine74 09/Oct/2006 at 09:34 PM
Foolhardy Ent of Fangorn Points: 1291 Posts: 562 Joined: 20/Apr/2006
I agree with those above- CE is one of the most important and best chapters in the whole story. I’ve always loved it and have re-read this chapter alone many times. What I love is that it sets everything in a wider context- it’s not just Frodo fleeing the Black Riders but the whole of ME at stake. It introduces the various races and brings you up to date with everything from Gandalf’s absence to what the Dwarves are facing. One of my favourites!
Brandywine74 09/Oct/2006 at 09:34 PM
Foolhardy Ent of Fangorn Points: 1291 Posts: 562 Joined: 20/Apr/2006
I agree with those above- CE is one of the most important and best chapters in the whole story. I’ve always loved it and have re-read this chapter alone many times. What I love is that it sets everything in a wider context- it’s not just Frodo fleeing the Black Riders but the whole of ME at stake. It introduces the various races and brings you up to date with everything from Gandalf’s absence to what the Dwarves are facing. One of my favourites!
Boromir88 10/Oct/2006 at 09:00 AM
Merchant of Minas Tirith Points: 3627 Posts: 2473 Joined: 24/Mar/2005

It’s good to read comments of people that like the Council of Elrond.  In some other forums I’ve been in, when that famous question ’What chapter do you skip?’ the Council of Elrond pops up quite a bit, and I’ve never fully understood why.  I haven’t viewed those threads in the plaza, because frankly I don’t really care for them anymore, so I don’t know exactly what the concensus is here in the plaza...though it’s very nice to see some good words going around about the Council.

I think to many people the simple length of the chapter turns them away, and it just seems like words, lots and lots of words.  But, the important thing they are missing is the wealth of information you can get just from this one chapter.  As Kirinki said starting out this thread, there is just so much that goes on in this chapter in such a short amount of time.  And there is a whole variety of things we get, we get forshadowing, we get history, we get character, and character interaction...not only that but tons and tons of information can be learned right here in this chapter.

I don’t recommend anyone to skip a particular chapter, but the one thing I do say is if you are going to skip a chapter, do not skip the Council of Elrond.  That is probably the one chapter you cannot absolutely skip at all.  For me, it is absolutely the most important chapter in the entire book.  When asked in another forum what are favorite chapters were, this is what I said about the Council of Elrond:

FOTR: The Council of Elrond- The dialogue in this chapter is great, it also holds one of my favorite passages. Gandalf explaining his meeting with Saruman. I find Saruman an intriguing character, and any chapter with Saruman I find interesting. with a lot more depth then what some people think. He defies The good peoples of Middle-earth, while he secretly plans to  stab Sauron in the back.

To expand a little more, Gandalf meeting with Saruman being explained still is one of my favorite parts to read, just because for a bad guy I love Saruman.  But just think about everything that I would be missing out had I skipped this chapter, and I would have felt totally lost, confused, and incomplete.

I mean for the first time I meet my favorite character in the story, what his attitude is like towards Aragorn, the forshadowing, as well as how the Fellowship did end up changing him. 

I still laugh and adore the courage of Bilbo to stand up and offer to destroy the Ring.  The story Gloin gives about Sauron’s messenger coming to King Dain.  Legolas’ story about Gollum escaping.  The planned strategies to destroy the Ring I find rather hilarious...Let’s throw it in the sea!  No lets dump the cursed thing to Tom Bombadil!  I’m surprised someone didn’t suggest eating it.   Anyway, point being, this is the one chapter you absolutely cannot skip through. 

I think the length fo the chapter, and the perception is, this is just a bunch of people talking for over 20 pages, there can’t be anything good in here is what creates the negative connotation.  However, how do you know exactly how ’boring’ it is if you actually haven’t read it?  Perhaps after you read it you’ll find it boring, it’s not so simply a bunch of people talking for over 20 pages, it’s what’s being discussed that’s so interesting, comical, informative...a wide variety.  And you really do miss out if you simply ’skip the chapter.’

Boromir88 10/Oct/2006 at 09:00 AM
Merchant of Minas Tirith Points: 3627 Posts: 2473 Joined: 24/Mar/2005

It’s good to read comments of people that like the Council of Elrond.  In some other forums I’ve been in, when that famous question ’What chapter do you skip?’ the Council of Elrond pops up quite a bit, and I’ve never fully understood why.  I haven’t viewed those threads in the plaza, because frankly I don’t really care for them anymore, so I don’t know exactly what the concensus is here in the plaza...though it’s very nice to see some good words going around about the Council.

I think to many people the simple length of the chapter turns them away, and it just seems like words, lots and lots of words.  But, the important thing they are missing is the wealth of information you can get just from this one chapter.  As Kirinki said starting out this thread, there is just so much that goes on in this chapter in such a short amount of time.  And there is a whole variety of things we get, we get forshadowing, we get history, we get character, and character interaction...not only that but tons and tons of information can be learned right here in this chapter.

I don’t recommend anyone to skip a particular chapter, but the one thing I do say is if you are going to skip a chapter, do not skip the Council of Elrond.  That is probably the one chapter you cannot absolutely skip at all.  For me, it is absolutely the most important chapter in the entire book.  When asked in another forum what are favorite chapters were, this is what I said about the Council of Elrond:

FOTR: The Council of Elrond- The dialogue in this chapter is great, it also holds one of my favorite passages. Gandalf explaining his meeting with Saruman. I find Saruman an intriguing character, and any chapter with Saruman I find interesting. with a lot more depth then what some people think. He defies The good peoples of Middle-earth, while he secretly plans to  stab Sauron in the back.

To expand a little more, Gandalf meeting with Saruman being explained still is one of my favorite parts to read, just because for a bad guy I love Saruman.  But just think about everything that I would be missing out had I skipped this chapter, and I would have felt totally lost, confused, and incomplete.

I mean for the first time I meet my favorite character in the story, what his attitude is like towards Aragorn, the forshadowing, as well as how the Fellowship did end up changing him. 

I still laugh and adore the courage of Bilbo to stand up and offer to destroy the Ring.  The story Gloin gives about Sauron’s messenger coming to King Dain.  Legolas’ story about Gollum escaping.  The planned strategies to destroy the Ring I find rather hilarious...Let’s throw it in the sea!  No lets dump the cursed thing to Tom Bombadil!  I’m surprised someone didn’t suggest eating it.   Anyway, point being, this is the one chapter you absolutely cannot skip through. 

I think the length fo the chapter, and the perception is, this is just a bunch of people talking for over 20 pages, there can’t be anything good in here is what creates the negative connotation.  However, how do you know exactly how ’boring’ it is if you actually haven’t read it?  Perhaps after you read it you’ll find it boring, it’s not so simply a bunch of people talking for over 20 pages, it’s what’s being discussed that’s so interesting, comical, informative...a wide variety.  And you really do miss out if you simply ’skip the chapter.’

Ankala Teaweed 10/Oct/2006 at 07:39 PM
March Warden of the Shire Points: 6116 Posts: 4487 Joined: 15/Apr/2002

For those of us who read The Lord of the Rings after reading The Hobbit (years ago before the movies), the experience was not boring. Despite it being much talk, reading it for the first time was more an experience of sitting on the edge of your seat with anticipation.

For the reader naturally had a whole lot of questions one wanted answered about Bilbo’s ring and its history, and about many other historical and recent events not the least of which was what had happened to Gandalf. Where did Elrond fit into the history? What had brought Gloin to Rivendell? And so forth and so on.
And this was the place where everyone had their questions answered--both those present at the Council representing all the free peoples of Middle-earth, and all of the readers, too.

I think that for the new readers coming to the books from the movies, they have a little too much information already to catch the moments of surprise and resolution.

Ankala Teaweed 10/Oct/2006 at 07:39 PM
March Warden of the Shire Points: 6116 Posts: 4487 Joined: 15/Apr/2002

For those of us who read The Lord of the Rings after reading The Hobbit (years ago before the movies), the experience was not boring. Despite it being much talk, reading it for the first time was more an experience of sitting on the edge of your seat with anticipation.

For the reader naturally had a whole lot of questions one wanted answered about Bilbo’s ring and its history, and about many other historical and recent events not the least of which was what had happened to Gandalf. Where did Elrond fit into the history? What had brought Gloin to Rivendell? And so forth and so on.
And this was the place where everyone had their questions answered--both those present at the Council representing all the free peoples of Middle-earth, and all of the readers, too.

I think that for the new readers coming to the books from the movies, they have a little too much information already to catch the moments of surprise and resolution.

Laielinwen 12/Oct/2006 at 01:07 AM
New Soul Points: 31115 Posts: 27324 Joined: 16/Mar/2002

Boromir88:  I’ve been in, when that famous question ’What chapter do you skip?’ the Council of Elrond pops up quite a bit, and I’ve never fully understood why

Gahhh... I can’t imagine skipping any chapter of any book. Though I can imagine skimming through a chapter without much interest if I’m bored to help me keep from just putting the book down and never finishing it. I’d hope everyone would give the chapter a chance. I’d also hope that if someone isn’t thrilled the first time (like I was at 15 when I first read it) that they will give it another go later on.

Laielinwen 12/Oct/2006 at 01:07 AM
New Soul Points: 31115 Posts: 27324 Joined: 16/Mar/2002

Boromir88:  I’ve been in, when that famous question ’What chapter do you skip?’ the Council of Elrond pops up quite a bit, and I’ve never fully understood why

Gahhh... I can’t imagine skipping any chapter of any book. Though I can imagine skimming through a chapter without much interest if I’m bored to help me keep from just putting the book down and never finishing it. I’d hope everyone would give the chapter a chance. I’d also hope that if someone isn’t thrilled the first time (like I was at 15 when I first read it) that they will give it another go later on.

Thefourfingers 12/Oct/2006 at 07:38 PM
Messenger of Minas Tirith Points: 825 Posts: 93 Joined: 10/Oct/2006
I have to say that the council of Elrond is my favourite part of FOTR.  Since it is inherently a group of people talking about the happenings of middle earth as they relate to the ring, we get alot of history in a relatively small number of pages.  The history of ME is, to me, the most interesting part of Tolkien’s writtings and therefore the council of Elrond is probably one of my most-reread chapters.
Thefourfingers 12/Oct/2006 at 07:39 PM
Messenger of Minas Tirith Points: 825 Posts: 93 Joined: 10/Oct/2006
I have to say that the council of Elrond is my favourite part of FOTR.  Since it is inherently a group of people talking about the happenings of middle earth as they relate to the ring, we get alot of history in a relatively small number of pages.  The history of ME is, to me, the most interesting part of Tolkien’s writtings and therefore the council of Elrond is probably one of my most-reread chapters.
Kirinki54 14/Oct/2006 at 01:07 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

I have quoted Tom Shippey writing on ‘The Council of Elrond’ before, and I would like to quote some of those lines again (Author of the Century).

 

For another, it has an unusual number of speakers present (twelve), the majority of them (seven) unknown to the reader and appearing for the first time. Just to make things more difficult, the longest speech, by Gandalf, which takes up half the total, contains direct quotation from seven more speakers, or writers, all of them apart from Butterbur and Gaffer Gamgee new to the story, and some of them (Saruman, Denethor) to be extremely important to it later. Other speakers, like Glóin, give quotations from yet more speakers, Dáin and Sauron´s messenger.

 

That is fantastic list per se, and yet the pure impact of all this information from all those actors did not make the chapter implode on itself. Instead Tolkien managed to integrate them into a magnificent structure.

 

And still there are some passages that (partly) bought in new actors: the three poems that occur in the text. (Shippey elaborated on them in a different context in The Road to Middle-earth.) One of the authors was present at the meeting; the two others were not. The poems all add to the complexity of the matters at hand, and they all also both serve to deepen the readers sense of mystery, as well as assist in our understanding.

 

I will deal with them not strictly in chronological order for reasons obvious in the conclusion.

Ash nazg durbatulûk, ash nazg gimbatul, ash nazg thrakatulûk agh burzum-ishi krimpatul.’

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

Through Gandalf also Sauron himself entered the gallery of participants at CE. By shock therapy Gandalf conveyed the totality of their situation. Now we have the main foe present, and an evil Maia genius at that.

 

As if this was not enough, we also have the stanzas of the dream. It takes our list of participants one step further, because this riddle/prophecy clearly has a divine inspiration. The light in the West and the words must be interpreted as intervention by the Valar (and perhaps ultimately, by Eru Ilúvatar).

Seek for the Sword that was broken:
 
In Imladris it dwells;
There shall be counsels taken
 
Stronger than Morgul-spells.
There shall be shown a token
 
That Doom is near at hand,
For Isildur’s Bane shall waken,
 And the Halfling forth shall stand.

The problems posed in Sauron´s poem were here directly addressed and countered.

 

Finally, the third poem in CE:

All that is gold does not glitter,
 Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
 
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
 
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken:
 The crownless again shall be king.

Thus we went from the mightiest of beings to one of the humblest in Middle-earth; Bilbo the Hobbit. His poem connected to the message from the powers-that-be, and reinforced and specified it by his prediction. It also – by way of the messenger - served as a mitigation between the different strata of the underlying structure.

 

In a way, these poems constitute a concentrate of the whole tale - just like the chapter of CE does. But the choice of poems as a literary vehicle allowed Tolkien to tap into much deeper wells of the mythology. They also – perhaps paradoxically - served to deepen the reality of the more practical parts of the discussion.

 

I myself have sometimes had a mixed opinion of the poems in LotR as a whole. They are clearly skilfully composed, but sometimes they have seemed a bit too programmatic (and I have largely outgrown programmatic art). The poems in CE is a striking example of the opposite – they help to bring the literature to a higher level.

Kirinki54 14/Oct/2006 at 01:07 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

I have quoted Tom Shippey writing on ‘The Council of Elrond’ before, and I would like to quote some of those lines again (Author of the Century).

 

For another, it has an unusual number of speakers present (twelve), the majority of them (seven) unknown to the reader and appearing for the first time. Just to make things more difficult, the longest speech, by Gandalf, which takes up half the total, contains direct quotation from seven more speakers, or writers, all of them apart from Butterbur and Gaffer Gamgee new to the story, and some of them (Saruman, Denethor) to be extremely important to it later. Other speakers, like Glóin, give quotations from yet more speakers, Dáin and Sauron´s messenger.

 

That is fantastic list per se, and yet the pure impact of all this information from all those actors did not make the chapter implode on itself. Instead Tolkien managed to integrate them into a magnificent structure.

 

And still there are some passages that (partly) bought in new actors: the three poems that occur in the text. (Shippey elaborated on them in a different context in The Road to Middle-earth.) One of the authors was present at the meeting; the two others were not. The poems all add to the complexity of the matters at hand, and they all also both serve to deepen the readers sense of mystery, as well as assist in our understanding.

 

I will deal with them not strictly in chronological order for reasons obvious in the conclusion.

Ash nazg durbatulûk, ash nazg gimbatul, ash nazg thrakatulûk agh burzum-ishi krimpatul.’

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

Through Gandalf also Sauron himself entered the gallery of participants at CE. By shock therapy Gandalf conveyed the totality of their situation. Now we have the main foe present, and an evil Maia genius at that.

 

As if this was not enough, we also have the stanzas of the dream. It takes our list of participants one step further, because this riddle/prophecy clearly has a divine inspiration. The light in the West and the words must be interpreted as intervention by the Valar (and perhaps ultimately, by Eru Ilúvatar).

Seek for the Sword that was broken:
 
In Imladris it dwells;
There shall be counsels taken
 
Stronger than Morgul-spells.
There shall be shown a token
 
That Doom is near at hand,
For Isildur’s Bane shall waken,
 And the Halfling forth shall stand.

The problems posed in Sauron´s poem were here directly addressed and countered.

 

Finally, the third poem in CE:

All that is gold does not glitter,
 Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
 
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
 
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken:
 The crownless again shall be king.

Thus we went from the mightiest of beings to one of the humblest in Middle-earth; Bilbo the Hobbit. His poem connected to the message from the powers-that-be, and reinforced and specified it by his prediction. It also – by way of the messenger - served as a mitigation between the different strata of the underlying structure.

 

In a way, these poems constitute a concentrate of the whole tale - just like the chapter of CE does. But the choice of poems as a literary vehicle allowed Tolkien to tap into much deeper wells of the mythology. They also – perhaps paradoxically - served to deepen the reality of the more practical parts of the discussion.

 

I myself have sometimes had a mixed opinion of the poems in LotR as a whole. They are clearly skilfully composed, but sometimes they have seemed a bit too programmatic (and I have largely outgrown programmatic art). The poems in CE is a striking example of the opposite – they help to bring the literature to a higher level.

Aragonia Dunami 29/Oct/2006 at 07:40 PM
Porter of Minas Tirith Points: 4532 Posts: 2370 Joined: 09/Sep/2008
I’m in agreement that the Council Of Elrond is a chapter that should not be skipped, it contains so much information crucial to the remaining story. I just re-read FOTR about a month ago, and even though I had read the book before, I was surprised at how much new information I came away with. I agree with Boromir88, it is the most crucial and important chapter of the whole book.
Aragonia Dunami 29/Oct/2006 at 07:40 PM
Porter of Minas Tirith Points: 4532 Posts: 2370 Joined: 09/Sep/2008
I’m in agreement that the Council Of Elrond is a chapter that should not be skipped, it contains so much information crucial to the remaining story. I just re-read FOTR about a month ago, and even though I had read the book before, I was surprised at how much new information I came away with. I agree with Boromir88, it is the most crucial and important chapter of the whole book.
goldenhair 03/Nov/2006 at 07:11 AM
Scholar of Isengard Points: 1480 Posts: 1194 Joined: 10/Dec/2002
Kirinki54,

Your fine post of June 5th suggests to me why Peter Jackson gave the chapter short shrift. While I love the chapter, it would overwhelm a movie audience not familiar with the books. I was 12 the first time I read LOTR and did not know Sauron and Saruman were two people until midway through Moria. I backtracked to CE and figured it out. Movie goers of course miss this opportunity.

From a literary point of view, natuarlly I agree. You points about the use of language is one of the most clever subliminal things I have every seen in literature. It occured to me that the speakers used language very differently, but it never occured to me the planning and design that led me to feel the way I did about each character. And of course it is taken much further as the language of certain characters change as they grow (esp Merry and Pippen-although not present at the meeting.

Your points about meetings and inklings is very telling. I think Tolkien uses meetings and chat by the fire as a literary device to move the plot along (not stall it). You can find it throughout Silmarilion, at the end of Roverandom, at some mid point in Farmer Giles of Ham and as the major device in The book of Lost Tales. It is used in both The Hobbit and LOTR in Bilbo?Frodo’s home, and in Elronds. In The Hobbit, it is also used at Beorns, and in the Elves encampment when Bilbo brings the arkenstone to trade for peace and meets up with Gandalf once again. And of course the story telling from Gandalf at Bilbo’s bedside after the battle of five armies. In LOTR we also see it at Tom Bombadils, with Strider/Aragorn in the inn and in Lorien. It use is continued in Fanghorn, on Pippens ride with Gandalf and several stories in gondor.

Without Tolkiens use of this method, one could argue that his adventure tale is no more than an action adventure like that which is so widely copied from him. While we might still read his story, it would be no better than the run of the mill stuff put out by the hundreds today.

In some instances the mode is more heavily used Book of Lost Tales. And in others barely reference as when Roverandom goes back to the sand wizard and digs him up for chats quite frequently.

I have not the time to view the Theory of Courage thread at this time, although it is of great interest to me. I reread Harper Lee’s "To Kill a Mockingbird" c 1960 and wondered if she had read LOTR. It is of interesting note that she believed one must not only do the right thing when there was no hope, but one must do the right thing even if one knew of certain failure.

Author of the Century is a must read!
goldenhair 03/Nov/2006 at 07:11 AM
Scholar of Isengard Points: 1480 Posts: 1194 Joined: 10/Dec/2002
Kirinki54,

Your fine post of June 5th suggests to me why Peter Jackson gave the chapter short shrift. While I love the chapter, it would overwhelm a movie audience not familiar with the books. I was 12 the first time I read LOTR and did not know Sauron and Saruman were two people until midway through Moria. I backtracked to CE and figured it out. Movie goers of course miss this opportunity.

From a literary point of view, natuarlly I agree. You points about the use of language is one of the most clever subliminal things I have every seen in literature. It occured to me that the speakers used language very differently, but it never occured to me the planning and design that led me to feel the way I did about each character. And of course it is taken much further as the language of certain characters change as they grow (esp Merry and Pippen-although not present at the meeting.

Your points about meetings and inklings is very telling. I think Tolkien uses meetings and chat by the fire as a literary device to move the plot along (not stall it). You can find it throughout Silmarilion, at the end of Roverandom, at some mid point in Farmer Giles of Ham and as the major device in The book of Lost Tales. It is used in both The Hobbit and LOTR in Bilbo?Frodo’s home, and in Elronds. In The Hobbit, it is also used at Beorns, and in the Elves encampment when Bilbo brings the arkenstone to trade for peace and meets up with Gandalf once again. And of course the story telling from Gandalf at Bilbo’s bedside after the battle of five armies. In LOTR we also see it at Tom Bombadils, with Strider/Aragorn in the inn and in Lorien. It use is continued in Fanghorn, on Pippens ride with Gandalf and several stories in gondor.

Without Tolkiens use of this method, one could argue that his adventure tale is no more than an action adventure like that which is so widely copied from him. While we might still read his story, it would be no better than the run of the mill stuff put out by the hundreds today.

In some instances the mode is more heavily used Book of Lost Tales. And in others barely reference as when Roverandom goes back to the sand wizard and digs him up for chats quite frequently.

I have not the time to view the Theory of Courage thread at this time, although it is of great interest to me. I reread Harper Lee’s "To Kill a Mockingbird" c 1960 and wondered if she had read LOTR. It is of interesting note that she believed one must not only do the right thing when there was no hope, but one must do the right thing even if one knew of certain failure.

Author of the Century is a must read!
Elrond Half-Elven 06/Nov/2006 at 12:45 AM
Herald of Imladris Points: 275 Posts: 22 Joined: 06/Nov/2006

I Love that chapter mainly because it gives so much more information on what is going on and how that relates to what already happened

the first time i read LOTR i was lost by the time i got to CE but it helped to understand all the characters and everything else

definately not too long because the story really needed that time of explanation

Elrond Half-Elven 06/Nov/2006 at 12:45 AM
Herald of Imladris Points: 275 Posts: 22 Joined: 06/Nov/2006

I Love that chapter mainly because it gives so much more information on what is going on and how that relates to what already happened

the first time i read LOTR i was lost by the time i got to CE but it helped to understand all the characters and everything else

definately not too long because the story really needed that time of explanation

The Mormegil 17/Nov/2006 at 05:12 AM
Stablemaster of the Mark Points: 672 Posts: 74 Joined: 25/Jan/2004

Whatever older fans might think of the chapter, and I’m a big fan of every single word throughout LOTR, the Council of Elrond presents a hulking speed bump for younger, modern readers. I know from my own experience of having taught the novels to capable middle- and high school students. The Council of Elrond, nowadays, would go down much easier had it been written by someone with a contemporary sense of pacing (J.K. Rowling ought to do a re-write -- but don’t take that literally). The information that comes out of the chapter is necessary, given the context, but you’ve got to be in love with the context before you can forgive how all that information gets dumped in your lap.

 

The Mormegil 17/Nov/2006 at 05:12 AM
Stablemaster of the Mark Points: 672 Posts: 74 Joined: 25/Jan/2004

Whatever older fans might think of the chapter, and I’m a big fan of every single word throughout LOTR, the Council of Elrond presents a hulking speed bump for younger, modern readers. I know from my own experience of having taught the novels to capable middle- and high school students. The Council of Elrond, nowadays, would go down much easier had it been written by someone with a contemporary sense of pacing (J.K. Rowling ought to do a re-write -- but don’t take that literally). The information that comes out of the chapter is necessary, given the context, but you’ve got to be in love with the context before you can forgive how all that information gets dumped in your lap.

 

The Mormegil 17/Nov/2006 at 05:16 AM
Stablemaster of the Mark Points: 672 Posts: 74 Joined: 25/Jan/2004
I’m a big fan of the chapter, as I am of the rest of the novels, but the Council of Elrond really is a hulking speed-bump in the story for younger, modern readers. J.K. Rowling ought to do a re-write (don’t take that literally). I agree that all the information is necessary, given the context, but you’ve got to already be in love with that context before you can forgive having all that information shovelled onto your lap.
The Mormegil 17/Nov/2006 at 05:16 AM
Stablemaster of the Mark Points: 672 Posts: 74 Joined: 25/Jan/2004
I’m a big fan of the chapter, as I am of the rest of the novels, but the Council of Elrond really is a hulking speed-bump in the story for younger, modern readers. J.K. Rowling ought to do a re-write (don’t take that literally). I agree that all the information is necessary, given the context, but you’ve got to already be in love with that context before you can forgive having all that information shovelled onto your lap.
The Mormegil 17/Nov/2006 at 05:18 AM
Stablemaster of the Mark Points: 672 Posts: 74 Joined: 25/Jan/2004

Oh, boy! Sorry about the double-posting. Something went  awry when I tried the first time, and (lo and behold) it didn’t get lost in the Void after all. Of course, some or all of you here with me now might very well have wished that it, and the 2nd version of it, had both disappeared ... ! Or not ...

 

The Mormegil 17/Nov/2006 at 05:18 AM
Stablemaster of the Mark Points: 672 Posts: 74 Joined: 25/Jan/2004

Oh, boy! Sorry about the double-posting. Something went  awry when I tried the first time, and (lo and behold) it didn’t get lost in the Void after all. Of course, some or all of you here with me now might very well have wished that it, and the 2nd version of it, had both disappeared ... ! Or not ...

 

goldenhair 22/Nov/2006 at 01:16 PM
Scholar of Isengard Points: 1480 Posts: 1194 Joined: 10/Dec/2002
The Mormegil,
Modern writers might indeed pace differently, however I think you will find that all of them at some point have "sit downs" where a great deal of knowledge is passed on the the reader.

JK Rowling has sit downs with Dumbledore at many points. You could also interpret the conversation in the shrieking shack in Book 3 as a form of sit down. Also several of the kitchen scenes in HP and the Order of the Phoenix.

I think you will find the need to impart great amounts of information in a short period of time dictates that this type of format is widely copied. And as one who sat with many LOTR novices through the movies I can tell you that the information is badly needed.

The real joy in such a chapter really builds with the hindsight that multiple reads give you in addition to a following of the "background" (IE Silmarilion).
goldenhair 22/Nov/2006 at 01:16 PM
Scholar of Isengard Points: 1480 Posts: 1194 Joined: 10/Dec/2002
The Mormegil,
Modern writers might indeed pace differently, however I think you will find that all of them at some point have "sit downs" where a great deal of knowledge is passed on the the reader.

JK Rowling has sit downs with Dumbledore at many points. You could also interpret the conversation in the shrieking shack in Book 3 as a form of sit down. Also several of the kitchen scenes in HP and the Order of the Phoenix.

I think you will find the need to impart great amounts of information in a short period of time dictates that this type of format is widely copied. And as one who sat with many LOTR novices through the movies I can tell you that the information is badly needed.

The real joy in such a chapter really builds with the hindsight that multiple reads give you in addition to a following of the "background" (IE Silmarilion).
Mirkwoodworker 27/Nov/2006 at 10:43 PM
Savant of Isengard Points: 576 Posts: 102 Joined: 05/Jul/2006
I love "The Council of Elrond" and "The Shadow of the Past" chapters in FR. They paint a vast landscape: the mythic, temporal, and geographical immensity that is Middle-earth. I often re-read them.
Mirkwoodworker 27/Nov/2006 at 10:43 PM
Savant of Isengard Points: 576 Posts: 102 Joined: 05/Jul/2006
I love "The Council of Elrond" and "The Shadow of the Past" chapters in FR. They paint a vast landscape: the mythic, temporal, and geographical immensity that is Middle-earth. I often re-read them.
Laielinwen 06/Dec/2006 at 03:36 AM
New Soul Points: 31115 Posts: 27324 Joined: 16/Mar/2002
The information is critical to understanding. It is like finding a few missing puzzle pieces under the table!  Younger readers that are reading for understanding and the whole of the story will do fine. Those reading for action will get a bit stuck, but hopefully they will in the end love the book and when they read it the second time they will pay more attention and find a fuller understanding that will let them see the immense value of this chapter.  I do not think it is in need of a rewrite. Rather... a re-read.
Kirinki54 10/Dec/2006 at 02:38 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

I think the CE might also be considered as Tolkien´s tribute to the oral tales (as opposed to literary stories). Action? Actually, there is plenty of action in CE, but it is ‘filtered’ through the story-telling of all the characters appearing in that chapter. If one is not used to live, verbal story-telling (and in this day and age clearly we lack in this capacity) it might come across as ‘boring’ to “hear” what people have to tell about certain events and processes instead of a straight-forward written exposé.

In the CE, Tolkien excelled in the verbal tale; giving us a cornucopia of examples on how different people (and races) could use that ancient form of art, all of them extremely well depicting the different nature and mind of the respective speakers.

I am not sure if this so called ‘tribute’ was done by any conscious effort on Tolkien´s part – I have never seen this point of view in any analysis so I might be alone to perceive it this way. Still, I think the suggestion has its merits. The LotR is abundant not only with stories told of ancient history but also in order for the characters to catch up with recent developments (due to Tolkien´s technique of literary interlacing). But the CE is clearly the nexus in this regards, as well as it is the nexus in so many other aspects.

Turabar 13/Dec/2006 at 02:04 PM
Archer of Imladris Points: 434 Posts: 72 Joined: 23/Aug/2006
I like this chapter pretty much, too. And that because eveything is explained perfectly in there and I understood that there were many things to dicover through Tolkien’s books. It was my first book and I didn’t even know that there existed other books written by Tolkien except from " The Lord of The Rings". This part of the book made me realise That there was an enormous world to discover. So, I owe to this council the fact that I have read all of  the Tolkien’s book and have learned so much about his world. Otherwise I would have read only three books of Tolkien’s work.
Laielinwen 15/Dec/2006 at 05:38 AM
New Soul Points: 31115 Posts: 27324 Joined: 16/Mar/2002
I think the CE might also be considered as Tolkien´s tribute to the oral tales (as opposed to literary stories).
Kirinki54... that is an interesting thought and one I’d not considered before. I do think it is an excellent example of the oral traditions!
Kirinki54 22/Dec/2006 at 02:40 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

Lailinwen, I am honoured that you think this was a valid observation!

Whenever  people say that the ch of CE is boring, I think that we might ask: do you compare to either 1) the movies, or to 2) the contemporarary mode of storytelling in other fantasy stories? In case of 2, slow down and hear what people really say, and how that is related to the context of LotR. Many people are just impatient, IMHO.

OhtarMor 24/Dec/2006 at 10:33 AM
Traitor of Mordor Points: 244 Posts: 7 Joined: 18/Dec/2006

I don’t think it’s a boring chapter. It’s very enlightening. But if your one of the people that only wants to see fighting and blood and guts and wars, then i could see why it would be a bit boring. Some people don’t get into the story enough to care about all the details like the other rings, the trip to Sauruman, and all that. Some people think that the peaceful parts of the books are boring. I think that it is one of the best chapters in The Fellowship of The Ring though, aside from The Bridge of Khazad-dûm, which i think is the best chapter.

Kirinki54 26/Dec/2006 at 05:33 AM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005
Hi OhtarMor, welcome to the Plaza! And why do you think The Bridge of Khazad-dûm is better - what has it got that the CE lacks?