Drśedain or the Pśkelmen

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Wilibald Bumble 19/Dec/2006 at 05:15 PM
New Soul Points: 647 Posts: 197 Joined: 03/Dec/2006

Who are these strange men?Tolkien gives little information about these strange Men in little passages in the Return of the King, The Silmarillion but the most descriptive information would be in the Unfinished Tales.

For those who don’t know them they are the Wild Men of the Woods and were in friendship with the more noble Edain and the Eldar but they were not fair to look at as it is quoted: "they had wide faces with deep-set, dark (almost black) eyes and heavy brows, flat noses, and wide mouths. The Drūgs were about 4 feet high but very broad, with heavy buttocks and short thick legs. The voices of the Drūgs were deep and guttural but their laughter was a surprise; it was rich and rolling, and set all who heard it to laughing for its pure merriment. They could be relentless enemies and they fought in silence. Once aroused their wrath was slow to cool, though it showed no sign save the red light in their eyes."  They are also called Pśkelmen by the men of Rohan which literally means "Goblin-men". That name is innaccruate and foolish as we know that these strange men of the second house of Haleth deeply hate Orcs. Why did Tolkien create these men? If these are lesser-men than those of Westerneese why did Tolkien have to change their appearence so dramatically?

My question is that did Tolkien create these old ancient Wild Woses of the Woods to symblolize Neandarthals in our world???

Please comment as this topic greatly interests me!

Son of Huor 20/Dec/2006 at 02:27 AM
Scribe of Minas Tirith Points: 2491 Posts: 1689 Joined: 26/Sep/2003
"Why did Tolkien create these men?" Do you really think that that is a question we can answer? His reasons were his own i guess. But I think it is clear nontheless that these Pśkelmen are at least meant to be a mistery. I do not think they are there to represent the Neanderthalers, since Tolkien depicts men as comin from the east, and not developing from one stage to another. In other words, there is no Neanderthaler-phase in the development of men in ME.
elendil elessar 20/Dec/2006 at 05:19 AM
Fletcher of Lothlorien Points: 1533 Posts: 4087 Joined: 13/Dec/2008
Just a quick correction, the Druedain were not part of the House of Haleth, but were in deep friendship with the Edain of these House. Their origins are not known, but they were admitted to the Edain (Dru’Edain&rsquo by the Eldar, hence they are not "lesser Men" but Men, and never touched by the shadow.
You probably also know that they some went to Numenor, those could, funnily enough, be called Men Of Westerness, has they were Edain who went to Numenor at the beginning of the Second Age
simpsonim 20/Dec/2006 at 07:57 AM
Sage of Isengard Points: 6521 Posts: 5563 Joined: 27/Aug/2005

You could also ask the same question for hobbits. I always thought they are so similar...in Tolkiens mind that is. They are both LIKE men but are not quite normal men. They are like evolutionally adopted men...

So if you find the secret to how hobbits became hobbits from normal men then you can apply that same thing to the drugs and voila. However... did hobbits and drugs came from men and became as they did by evolution and adoptation to natural surroundings or whatever? Maybe they were created as such... I don’t kniow...does Tokien say anything about it?

Bottom line... I pretty much put hobbits and drugs in the same basket  as in they are both men but not quite men.

geordie 20/Dec/2006 at 10:07 AM
Hugo Bracegirdle Points: 20570 Posts: 14087 Joined: 06/Mar/2005
Nothing to do with neanderthals as far as I know. Tom Shippey comes up with some interesting stuff in his book The Road to Middle-earth. As we know, Tolkien liked words. Individual words. In fact, he once said ’the name comes first. Give me a name and I’ll make a story’.

Shippey was intervewed in his office at Leeds University; the same on which Tolkien had occupied in the twenties, I think. Shippey says ’outside, we have Woodhouse Lane, which leads to Woodhouse moor. Now, what does ’woodhouse’ mean? Well, when the road and the moor got their names, people round here did’nt say ’woodhouse’ - they still don’t - they said ’wood’ose’ which is ’wood-wose’ from wudu-wasa. Which means ’wild man of the wood - the wood-wose. He takes the form in legend of ’The Green Man’. A common character in Northern European legend.

So, in Middle-earth, we have real Wild Men; the Woses. And Tolkien, taking that name, wove another story. Just like he’s done with the Old English name ’ent’ by the way, which means ’giant’.