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Kirinki54 26/Dec/2006 at 01:32 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005

The OED gives this definition of witenagemot (or witan): the council that advised the Anglo-Saxon kings, consisting of nobles and churchmen chosen by the king himself; from wita wise man and gemōt meeting.


Compare the White Council. Was this a pun by Tolkien?

Battlehamster 26/Dec/2006 at 02:03 PM
Horse-lord of the Mark Points: 1401 Posts: 515 Joined: 10/Nov/2006
It seems like it could be completely separate--what with "Saruman the White"  That White Council would be a natural name for them.  On the other hand, Tolkien does seem to have delighted in Atalante/Avallone/Orthanc type puns, so it could certainly be a pun.  It makes sense either way.
Falmarin 26/Dec/2006 at 08:41 PM
Herald of Imladris Points: 239 Posts: 40 Joined: 24/Oct/2006
I think it must have crossed his mind at some point, being as efucated on the subject as he was. When i read the title to the thread i mistook it as Wisengamot and then upon reading your posts, I was reminded of J.K. Rowling’s choice of words in HP. Now that i thought was definitely a pun.
Endril 27/Dec/2006 at 09:12 AM
Healer of Imladris Points: 9193 Posts: 9362 Joined: 15/Jan/2006
Interesting fact but I don’t know if the two terms are similar or inspired one by another. The roles of the two councils in old history/LOTR is quite different. The White Council was the order of wizards sent to save ME yet for the other term, it was only a group made to advise the king. There roles and meanings are quite different.
Kirinki54 27/Dec/2006 at 02:58 PM
Librarian of Imladris Points: 2897 Posts: 1354 Joined: 17/Nov/2005
Yes, Legolas, I realize that. Which is why I asked if it was an intended pun, in this case a literary joke.