Gimli shaved?

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Kaos the Gold 01/Dec/2006 at 03:46 AM
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   I know the films portrayed dwarves as having permanent beards but were some dwarves actually clean-shaved?
Dany 01/Dec/2006 at 11:21 AM
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No, they never shaved their beards. Dwarves took great pride in having long, thick beards. Unfortunately, I can’t give you a quote because I don’t have any of the books with me, but I know that in one of them (I’m thinking it’s the Hobbit) that dwarves never shaved their beards. I think at one point in FotR, Gimli says something about it, also.
Daywalker 01/Dec/2006 at 11:35 AM
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Yes i think that Dany is correct. Altough i dont think that in LotR is definet quote about this, in Hobbit there’s two (atleast) quotes that will show that All dwarves had a beard. I believe that it was important thing among them, almost like status-thing. Bigger beard, more important (older also obviously) dwarf.

The mother of our particular hobbit … what is a hobbit? I suppose hobbits need some description nowadays, since they have become rare and shy of the Big People, as they call us. They are (or were) a little people, about half our height, and smaller than the bearded Dwarves. Hobbits have no beards.

They were too large for him, and he looked rather comic. What his father Bungo would have thought of him, I daren’t think. His only comfort was he couldn’t be mistaken for a dwarf, as he had no beard.

Of course these doesn’t mean that there couldn’t be beardless dwarves but atleast i don’t remember mention of it. I did check some books and there’s nothing.

Wood Walker 01/Dec/2006 at 11:41 AM
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In some old empires men would shave their beards as a sign of mourning. Like if a guy’s son died then he would cut off his beard as a symbol of humbling himself and losing something dear to him. Maybe the dwarves also practiced this custom too. That is the only way I could picture a dwarf shaving his beard.
Ecthel 01/Dec/2006 at 12:05 PM
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In moments of terrible grief they tore out their beards but no shaving

Annuicalar 01/Dec/2006 at 12:19 PM
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In mediveval times, men used to wear long beards proudly. They were symbols of a good warrior. When a man putted down another, he can cut his beard. So if you had a long beard you were thought to have win all your recent fights; you can see it in El Cantar del Mio Cid, the spanish epic poem. May be with dwarfs, beard is a symbol of proud too.

Annuicalar

Aikanár 01/Dec/2006 at 05:34 PM
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Yes, but did young dwarves shave? you know, if you never shave then you’re not ever going to grow a beard, at least not one like a dwarf. You have to shave a little or it’s just a couple of hairs. I doubt if they would shave logn though, as long beards most likely ran in the family. (both sides)
Galin 01/Dec/2006 at 07:44 PM
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An interesting description from The War of the Jewels...

’The Naugrim were ever, as they still remain, short and squat in stature; they were deep-breasted, strong in the arm, and stout in the leg, and their beards were long. Indeed this strangeness they have that no Man nor Elf has ever seen a beardless Dwarf - unless he were shaven in mockery, and would then be more like to die of shame than of many other hurts that to us would seem more deadly. For the Naugrim have beards from the beginning of their lives, male and female alike; nor indeed can their womenkind be discerned by those of other race, be it in feature or in gait or in voice, nor in any wise save this: that they go not to war, and seldom save at direst need issue from their deep bowers and halls. It is said, also, that their womenkind are few, and that save their kings and chieftains few Dwarves ever wed; wherefore their race multiplied slowly, and now is dwindling.’  JRRT

Celebind Eryniel 02/Dec/2006 at 10:07 AM
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Quote: Originally posted by Galin on Friday, December 01, 2006

 For the Naugrim have beards from the beginning of their lives,


Is this meant to suggest that dwarves are born bearded?  (If they are, they’d have to be born with a very short beard).
Wood Walker 02/Dec/2006 at 02:03 PM
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My little sister was born with hair already on her head. So maybe male dwarves where born with little beards on the faces. It wouldn’t be out of the realm of possiblity, since dwarves were different than us humans, it would stand to reason for them to have different features.
Daywalker 02/Dec/2006 at 02:23 PM
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Well yes i know what you mean and do tend to agree with it but let’s not get totally too weird here . ’For the Naugrim have beards from the beginning of their lives’. Maybe this just means that right from the beginning of their life (meaning not that what you think *g*) they start to grow beards and that will stay there through their whole lives. They don’t shave it off by purpose nor willingly but only in times of great need and sorrow (tearing it in that case). Remember that in Hobbit, Fili had to get rid of most of his beard after that episode with spiders in Mirkwood.
Arvellas 02/Dec/2006 at 02:25 PM
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I would think that would mean Dwarves are born with beards.  It would certainly be plausible, since sometimes humans are born with hair already on their heads, and many animals are born with fur.

It has always seemed to me that the Dwarves take great pride in their beards, but when in dire need would cut them.  I recall a passage in The Hobbit in which the cutting of a Dwarf’s beard was mentioned:
"It took him ages to get the beastly stuff {spiderwebs} out of his eyes and eyebrows, and as for his beard, he had to cut most of it off."~The Hobbit: Flies and Spiders
Notice, though, that although most of it was cut off, he did not shave it, as a human might have done.  It must have been pretty important if he made an effort to keep atleast some of it when someone else might have given up and shaved the whole thing.  And considering that the spiders wrapped all the Dwarves from head to toe, it is safe to say that his entire beard would have had webs stuck in it, and to save any of it would have required quite a bit of untangling.  If a Dwarf was willing to put that effort into preserving their beard, I’d say their whiskers were pretty important to them.

Norin Deathfoot 03/Dec/2006 at 09:42 AM
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Cutting my beard off! Oh no!

Beards are very important to dwarves. they would only cut bits off of it for some really good reason. Otherwise dwarves spend lots of time grooming their beards and braiding it. Why would we want to shave it off?

Endril 03/Dec/2006 at 12:37 PM
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From what I know they were very proud of there beards so they would never do that. The beards were like the wizard’s staff in a way. They showed there ranks, how old they were. A small question: do the children of the dwarfes developed beards at a small age?
Rochir Mumakdacil 03/Dec/2006 at 12:40 PM
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Wood Walker I don’t think we have evidence of Dwarves in Middle-earth shaving their beards in mourning. Galin’s quote pretty well clinches that.

However, there is this from RotK Appx A III Durin’s Folk, describing Thrain’s reaction to the news of his father’s death at the hands of Azog: Such was the tale that Nar brought back to Thrain; and when he had wept and torn his beard he fell silent.  There you have it torn his beard. Whether that means merely ’torn at it, disarranged it’ or ’torn part of it out’ I am not sure.

Wood Walker 03/Dec/2006 at 07:01 PM
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Rochir: All I was doing was trying to give some likly reasons that a dwarf would cut his beard. That is all. Also just because no man or elf saw a dwarf in such a state doesn’t mean that it didn’t go on. The dwarves by and large tended to kept to these selves and I would think more so if a dwarf were in mourning. It would be rare for a mourning dwarf to go out and meet with other folk.  I never said there was evidence to prove it and so far there is none for the disproval of it.

 

Mithrandír 06/Dec/2006 at 04:45 AM
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Quote: Originally posted by Dany on Friday, December 01, 2006
No, they never shaved their beards. Dwarves took great pride in having long, thick beards.
yes, this is quite right. In most of the other fantasy books, were it mentions Dwarves, they never shaved their beards, and took really great pride in the kind of beards they had, and even had competitions to see what length their beard was.
Daywalker 06/Dec/2006 at 02:52 PM
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Shunshuu - ’They are in voice and appearance, and in garb if they must go on a journey, so like to the dwarf-men that the eyes and ears of other peoples cannot tell them apart. This has given rise to the foolish opinion among Men that there are no dwarf-women, and that the Dwarves ’grow out of stone’. LotR, appendixes

This clearly shows that also female dwarves had a beard. and appearance [ ]so like to the dwarf-men..

Wood Walker 06/Dec/2006 at 03:35 PM
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PennyWise:

It does not say that the female dwarves had beards. It says they are like dwarf men, but not carbon copies of them. How would other people know that dwarves didn’t shave their beards? If a man sees a group of dwarves, some clean-faced and some bearded he would think that some dwarf men had beard and some didn’t. But in reality the clean shaven ones where women, and the bearded where the men. The man would mistake the dwarf women beacause they looked so close to one another.

Daywalker 06/Dec/2006 at 03:44 PM
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Where does it say that there was clean-faced dwarves? That’s the point of this thread and because we haven’t been able to find out any evidents that there was dwarfs without beard, how could we know what did the dwarf-women look like? If only seen dwarves had beard, how can we know that those words ain’t true?

Dís was the daughter of Thráin II. She is the only dwarf-woman named in these histories. It was said by Gimli that there are few dwarf-women, probably no more than a third of the whole people. They seldom walk abroad except at great need, They are in voice and appearance, and in garb if they must go on a journey, so like to the dwarf-men that the eyes and ears of other peoples cannot tell them apart. This has given rise to the foolish opinion among Men that there are no dwarf-women, and that the Dwarves ’grow out of stone’.

It is because of the fewness of women among them that the kind of the Dwarves increases slowly, and is in peril when they have no secure dwellings. For Dwarves take only one wife or husband each in their lives, and are jealous, as in all matters of their rights. The number of dwarf-men that marry is actually less than one-third. For not all the women take husbands: some desire none; some desire one that they cannot get, and so will have no other. As for the men, very many also do not desire marriage, being engrossed in their crafts.

Túrin 07/Dec/2006 at 06:59 AM
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Woodwalker,

You could also read the quote which Galin’s posted above:

For the Naugrim have beards from the beginning of their lives, male and female alike; nor indeed can their womenkind be discerned by those of other race, be it in feature or in gait or in voice
     - War of the Jewels

Pretty much settles the issue.

Stiffler Vaneyar 07/Dec/2006 at 05:37 PM
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Do not forget also that when a dwarf mourns, he clears away his beard to show it. I found this in the text on the Dwarf Wars where Azog died. This hapens just after Thror is killed, and Nar sent as a messenger by the orcs:

Such was the tale that Nár brought back to Thráin; and when he had wept and torn his beard he fell silent.

Oromandin 07/Dec/2006 at 08:29 PM
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That would be really sad if you saw  breardless dwarves. their beards are a sign of honor and with out it they look really sad. If you are older you would have a long proud beard, if you were younger your beard would have a shorter beard but wanting it to grow longer, so you would never shave it off. unless you were a little messed up or did not want any honor or you went throught some very terible event or something like that. But I personally would prefer to look at bearded dwarfs and not shved ones!

Annuicalar 07/Dec/2006 at 09:23 PM
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Do female dwarves shave?
Daywalker 08/Dec/2006 at 05:10 AM
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Annuicalar - If you would read whole thread and especially last part of this thread, you will have answer to that your question.  But again,  Indeed this strangeness they have that no Man nor Elf has ever seen a beardless Dwarf - unless he were shaven in mockery’ and,  ’They are in voice and appearance, and in garb if they must go on a journey, so like to the dwarf-men that the eyes and ears of other peoples cannot tell them apart.’

First we would have to find out were there beardless dwarfs before we could get answer to this your question.

Wood Walker 08/Dec/2006 at 07:52 AM
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Turin: Thanks I think I need to retain more of what I read.

Daywalker: Sorry about the missunderstanding ( did your name change from Pennywise or am I just losing it?)

Kaos the Gold 08/Dec/2006 at 10:08 AM
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Wow!  I didn’t know so many people would actually come to this thread! 

Daywalker:-   If elves and men has never seen a beardless dwarf, couln’t that hint that there were beardless dwarves that men and elves didn’t see?  Maybe they didn’t mind being shaved in front of other dwarves, but saw it neccessary to be bearded in front of other species?  Although I can find many flaws in that argument.

elvenboy20 09/Dec/2006 at 08:26 AM
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 i dont think there are beardless dwarves no one it sounds like has heard of beardless dwarves even gimli said that even the women if there are any hve beards so i dont really think there are any beardless dwarves they like beards
Túrin 09/Dec/2006 at 09:07 AM
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Neidr Wen,

If elves and men has never seen a beardless dwarf, couln’t that hint that there were beardless dwarves that men and elves didn’t see?

Nope.  That’s logically unsound.  I can say that I’ve never seen a winged Hobbit, but that in no way implies that winged Hobbits exist, and I have merely not yet had the peasure of seeing them.  And, if we go back to Galin’s quote, we see that there are, simply, no beardless Dwarves, and that those who are shaven in mockeys are quite likely to die from shame.

Arvellas 09/Dec/2006 at 10:52 AM
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Stiffler-Pulling one’s beard out is not the same thing as shaving, and I don’t know whether the pulling out of the beard was done as a conscious way of mourning.  It seems more likely to me that it was an act of anxiety and not a custom, the same way that some people are driven to pull their hair when they are terribly upset.
Stiffler Vaneyar 10/Dec/2006 at 10:26 AM
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Arvellas- I’ve been waiting for someone to comment on my post, thank you. That is true, but there is also another way of defining this. Which, unless we have another quote somewhere, we can’t be entirely sure of. In ancient times when peopl  mourned in our history, they would pull their hair, their beards, and rip their clothing off. In Jewish History, for example, people would rip off their clothes and where sackclothe as a sign of mourning. Can’t a dwarf show their mourning by ripping off their beard? That would be an ultimate case of mourning, as dwarves (as we have said) don’t do this sort of thing naturally. Just like people naturally don’t do similar things as that. In mourning, people do strange things to show they are mourning.

Novgwath 10/Dec/2006 at 10:29 AM
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If Gimli did shave.....would he use GIllette Fusion?
Wood Walker 11/Dec/2006 at 02:23 PM
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No he would just use his axe. Gimli is one tough dwarf!
Kaos the Gold 13/Dec/2006 at 01:43 PM
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He’d probably girnd his chin against a rock, like Aragorn does in the opening scenes of TT!
Kaulargorn 15/Dec/2006 at 11:59 AM
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The beards of the dwarves is a matter of pride to them. Can you imagine a dwarf shaved?! No way! It’s like a psysical part of their body! It’s like some Chinese men I think, who keep their hair very long. It’s a matter of proud to them

Arien Ellariel 18/Dec/2006 at 07:42 AM
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I’d find that very hard to believe. I would think that being dwarves, they would take great pride in their beards and would have no wish to make themselves look rediculous in front of their fellow dwarves by shaving them off. A dwarf’s beard is really what destinguishes him to be a dwarf in my opinion.
Wood Walker 20/Dec/2006 at 08:25 PM
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What better way to clearly show ones grief and lament than by destroying something that you value highly. Hypotheticly speaking, lets say you are a dwarf and you learn that your son has died, killed in battle. To express your inward grief, you tear out your beard, telling every other dwarf that you have suffered a great lose. Now I don’t have a quote to back up this theory, but logicly it makes since.