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Eryan began this thread with the following post.

Quote:
What about talking a little bit about Faramir? He is really my favourite character and I read somewhere that Tolkien said that he also was his favourite character. I know of course that Tolkien identified himself with Beren, but the two are really alike. Both are gentle (Beren was the friend of all beasts and birds!) and both are gravely hurt and almost die when trying to fight with a foe too strong for them. Beren is-imprisoned by Sauron, then hurt by an arrow of Curufin, then gets his hand bitten off by Carharoth and finally gets killed by Carharoth. Faramir gets hurt and falls under Black Breath and can do nothing more for his beloved City. If it were not for the arrival of KIng Theoden and then Aragorn, and finally the success of the quest of Frodo, Gondor would certainly fall. Yet people (and animals) llove them and trust them.
Well the main theme of the LOTR seems to be that evil cannot be defeated by force but by self-denial..


Ungoliant replied

Ah, Faramir, sweet Faramir.....Smile Smilie

One of the most moving passages in LotR was when he woke up from the Back Breath. And since I have a NEW copy of LotR (heh heh):

Quote:
Suddenly Faramir stirred, and he opened his eyes, and he looked on Aragorn who bent over him; and a light of knowledge and love was kindled in his eyes, and he spoke softly. "My lord, you called me. I come. What does the king command?"


*sob*
When I first read LotR, I remember thinking of Strider/Aragorn as the perfect man until Faramir's character appeared on the scene. And praying that I would see more of him when they left Henneth Annun. And being delighted when I found out that he had a larger role in RotK. He is one of the most delightful male characters that I've read in fiction - sweet, gentle, loving, wise, loyal, brave and honourable. The perfect man!

My favorite Faramir bit is from 'The Two Towers', Book IV, Chapter 5 entitled 'Window on the West'
Quote:
Sam hesitated for a moment, the bowing very low: 'Good night, Captain, my lord,' he said. 'You took the chance, sir.'

'Did I so?' said Faramir.

'Yes sir, and showed your quality: the very highest.'

Faramir smiled. 'A pert servant, Master Samwise. But nay: the praise of the praiseworthy is above all rewards. Yet there was naught in this to praise. I had no desire to do other than I have done.'

'Ah well, sir,' said Sam, 'you said my master had an elvish air; and that was good and true. But I can say this: you have an air too, sir, that reminds me of, of--well, Gandalf, of wizards.'

'Maybe,' said Faramir. 'Maybe you discern from far away the air of Numenor. Good night!'
Faramir, Faramir, Faramir.....wasn't he just adorable? Eowyn wasn't even good enough for him! I have to envision more than one marital dissagreement with that couple.

I think the reason Faramir was like Gandalf is that he and the wizard were very close evidently. When Gandalf was in Gondor, Faramir used to like to spend time with him, and learn from him. This made Denethor very angry, and he even abused Faramir physically for it.

Gandalf seems to have responded to Faramir with paternal affection. I fancy Gandalf would have liked to adopt him! This is largly what dragged Gandalf away from the gates to rescue him. He just couldn't bare to let him die, no matter what the cost to the battle.

I totally agree with Ungoliant. Where do you get a man like that? *sigh*. I cant wait to see him in the movie! I hope they do him justice.
My favorite part is where Faramir tells his father he let the ring go and his father acts so disapointed. But Faramir didn't try to explain his way out of it, just accepted his father's ire like a real man! I can't wait for him on screen. He is my favorite human in the series.
I didn't like Faramir. Am I alone? Smile Smilie Well, I did like him, but not really. Guess he's just the brother of Boromir for me. Smile Smilie
It's great that so many of you like Faramir so much!
Yes - the description of his awakening to life is very moving. I also think that that scene has a very profound symbolic meaning. Faramir and Aragorn are still rivals - they both have lawful claims to rule Minas Tirith, Faramir as the Heir of Denethor, Aragorn as the Heir of Elendil himself. And Aragorn does not win by defeating Faramir (= demonstrating that Faramir is weaker, less worthy...) - but by healing him, by giving him new life. The righteous King is the Healer, the Giver of Life - and not of Death.
However, I felt a little bit disappointed by a brief account of the meeting between Aragorn and Faramir after Aragorn became the King; it was too much cold and formal for me. I expected that they will become personal friends... like Aragorn and Eomer. ..

As for the attitude of Denethor - I can understand it very well. Finally the choice of Faramir proved to be juistified - but it could very easily prove to be totally disastrous. Denethor was convinced that the quest of Frodo cannot succeed and that it will only hasten the moment, when the Ring will fall into the hands of the Enemy. And it's true alas what he said to Faramir, that he made his choice not only for himself, but also for his whole people, whom he should protect... without even asking them their opinion. Finally some of them could prefer thraldom (with the hope that it won't continue infinitely!...) to the ultimate destruction of Gondor.
In a way, both Denethor and Faramir were right. And it's this that makes their relationship tragic. Denethor was not simply a nasty dad unjust to his son! Ttheir confilnct reminds me of the confilct between Antigona and Creon in the classical Greek play of Sofocles...
I think Denethor was indeed unjust to his son. He compared him to Boromir. As a mother of two sons I know this is the ultimate slap in the face! It indicates disapointment in the one son and the elevation of the other son at the same time.
Denethor didn't just compare the two, he openly favoured Boromir. He even said to Faramir that he wished he had died instead. Don't you just hate Denethor?

All of this just made me love Faramir all the more, as no doubt Tolkien intended. Good parents love all their children equally.
I reckon Denethor was pretty unjust to his son when he tried to burn him alive. What do you reckon?
Yes I agree that Denethor was not really an exemplary father. It was really cruel to tell Faramir that he preferred him to die instead of Boromir - nad all this when Faramir was nearly spent after hard fighting and not sleeping on several nights! But I think that he told him so mainly because he was frankly convinced that Faramir did an extremely stupid and disastrous thing by letting the Ring go to Mordor. He did not believe that Frodo had any chance of destroying the Ring. And we must admit that it WAS highly improbable! I think that this was just an expression of his anger.
For wishing to burn him alive... well he himself also choose to be burned alive. He just wanted to die (together with his son whom he loved after all and to whom he had guilty feelings) with some dignity... and not to be hewed into pieces or tormeted by victorious soldiers of Sauron. He saw himself in the Palantir black sails of corsairs of Umbar coming to join the hosts of Mordor, he had no idea that it's Aragorn coming to his aid.
Of course we are all on the side of Faramir, also because he behaves with so much class - is not aggressive himself but "takes it" as a man. Yet Denethor is a cmplex personality and not just a stupid old man, unjust and full of spite.
It is of course a very bad thing, to favorize one of the children. I personally had very wise parents; sometimes either I or my brother asked them "Whom do you love more?" they always answered " We love you both in the same way". We never ever got a different answer and we appreciate it!
However, look how that injust treatment worked in the case of Denethor's children. It's Boromir (the favorised one) who has apparently some problems with his personality. Boromir is anxious to be assured that everybody is "grateful" to him which means that he feels that he is not loved (or even not liked) enough. And no wonder, Faramir is generally liked because he is sensitive and understands others and respects their dignity - whereas Boromir is accustomed to "have his will" with everybody and do not bothers overmuch about their feelings. Remember his behaviour during the Council of Elrond - when old Bilbo made his valiant offer to become the Ring Bearer, Boromir started to laugh and "laughter died on his lips" only when he remarked that all others do not have any idea to laugh!
My point is that if you favorize one of your children you do harm to both of them, and not only to the child which is less praised. Spoiled children tend to be bullies and therefore they become unpopular and finally unhappy...
LOL, Squirrel, you have a way of getting right to the point don't you? Boromir was a little shallow in the book, admittedly, but he was first and formost trying to restore faith in his fathers rule (not an un noble or totally selfish act) and restore faith in men. The ring used these noble goals and twisted them when it called him. I really got tired of his "I told you so's" but you have to admit... he was right about everything but Frodo's chances in Mordor!

Faramir is one of the characters I really like, so I am really trying to not get my hopes up about the character on the movie. I don't want to be disapointed. But since they did such an excellent job on Sam (another one of my fav's) I will give them the benefit of the doubt until I see the movie. (I will have no expectations and will therefore not be disapointed...I will have no expectations and will therefore not be disapointed...I will have no expectations and will therefore not be disapointed... IT'S NOT WORKING)![Edited on 8/2/2002 by swampfaye]
Hi Swamphaye it worked after all!!
I forgot to ask Allyssa: what do you mean by telling that Denethor "abused Faramir physically" for his contacts with Gandalf? I do not remember anything of the sort from the LOTR. Was Faramir beaten by his father? Shocking!
I don't think that favouritism affected Faramir's personality (or Boromir, for that matter). Faramir turned out sensitive & well adjusted - which he wouldn't have if he felt slighted as a child. In LotR, Faramir was wise & far seeing (like his father) because his Numenorian genes came out stronger, that's all - and it just skipped a sibling in the case of Boromir. Which was why Boromir was more aggresive, selfish etc - more like a Captain of Rohan than a Lord of Gondor.

I doubt whether Tolkien intended to highlight the consequences of unfair child rearing practises when he wrote about Faramir & Boromir.

[Edited on 8/2/2002 by Ungoliant]
Eryan, what excellent comments on parenting. Very true.

As for the physical abuse, I believe I read it in one of Tolkien's more obscure published works. I will have to get back to you...

Back in medieval times, it was probably not all that shocking or even unusual to use corporal punnishement to discipline children, so not really all that surprising.

Tolkien may not have intended his protrayal of the stewards family to be a lesson in good fathering, but he did use it to good effect for the story. Characters with faults who come from dysfunctional families make for interesting reading.
Actually, you can liken it to "Sword in the Stone" and the relationship of Sir Hugo and all the staff to Wart and Kaye. Kaye was always treated well and with defference, because as far as they knew, he was the heir. (I remember in the book how shocked Kaye was when Merlin chastised him) Wart was always the brunt of everyone's punishment and even had to bear the ire the staff felt of Kaye - because he was nothing but an adopted son... no heir at all.

Boromir was the heir apparant in the city of Gondor. If anyone paid any mind to Faramir, it was only as "Boromir's brother" and he bore that well. Some younger siblings find that hard to bear and even become biter about it (no matter how good the eldest sibling is to them). There were those who treated Faramir as Faramir and not as brother or son of anyone (like Gandalf). But Denethor was probably treating Boromir as the future king (steward) and if he had time for Faramir, he should have been greatful for it... (which, despite being king/steward is really poor parenting)[Edited on 9/2/2002 by swampfaye]
Well my point is that 'poor parenting' had nothing to do with the endproduct - at least not in LotR. Sure, Denethor was unfair, but so what? Back then it was expected that the heir got everything, and the 'spare' nothing - well, the military or the church anyway.

And Faramir seemed to have accepted the fact as well - sure I feel sorry for him, but I don't think that it was a big deal, that all. Tolkien was more interested in their hereditary characteristics, so Faramir was far-seeing & wise because his Numenorian genes came out stronger. So was Denethor (far-seeing, strong willed, etc), and Boromir unfortunately was a bit shallow because the super-duper Numenorian heritage kinda skipped him.
Allyssa,
I'm really happy that you are of similar mind in respect to some problems of parenting!
I am still shocked that Denethor might have been so much displeased with faramir for
his contacts with Gandalf that he could have him flogged... But, evidently, already at
that time Faramir was not a very obedient son. I suppose that he was always very polite
and never overtly aggressive - but did not let himself to be ordered in important matters!
It must have annoyed poor Denethor a lot!
I would be very grateful for any further information on Faramir coming from less known
works of Tolkien!...

Ungoliant,
I do not think that we can explain all differences between Faramir and Boromir solely in
terms of genes. It is difficult to tell to what degree the personality of Faramir was
shaped by his Numenorean genes ("blood") - and to what degree it was shaped by his
experience. This is the classical "nature and nurture" controversy well known in behavioural
sciences; it is usually assumed that both these factors are important.
I agree that Tolkien put an emphasis on the importance of hereditary
factors. However, he also stressed the role of "nurture". For instance,
In his essay "on fairy tales" he wrote

Quote:

"but it is one of the lessons of fairy-stories [...] that on callow, lumpish, and selfish
youth peril, sorrow and the shadow of death can bestow dignity and even
sometimes wisdom"


Faramir is certainly marked with sorrow - this is clearly told in the scene on the walls
of Minas Tirith when Eowyn makes him think about his mother who died young...
I have a feeling that he is so full of compassion for the sorrows of others because he
knows sorrow so well from his own experience.

I agree that both Denethor and Faramirare more intelligent and have more class
than poor Boromir. However, Faramir differs from Denethor (and Boromir) above
all by his extraordinary ability for empathy and compassion.

"Numenorean blood" ("genes") does not automatically make people so amiable as Faramir.
Many Numenoreans were not nice at all, at all!... In one of the Unfinished Tales we have a story
of a couple of Numenoreans, Aldarion and Erendis; both are eztremely selfish and their marriage
is a disaster. In that story Erendis describes Men of Numenor in the following way:

Quote:

"All things were made for their service: hills are for quarries, rivers to furnish water or to turn
wheels, trees for boards, women for their body's need or if fair to adorn their table and
hearth; and children to be teased when nothing else is to do - but they would as soon play
with their hounds' whelps. To all they are gracious and kind, merry as larks in the
morning (if the sun shines) [...]. Anger they show only when they become aware,
suddenly, that there are other wills in the world beside their own. Then they will be
as ruthless as the seawind if anything dare to withstand them"


This is not very Faramir-like, is it?

And then Numenoreans were even worse! During the reign of their last king they

Quote:

"sailed now with power and armoury to Middle-Earth, and they came no longer as
bringers of gifts, nor even as rulers, but as fierce men of war. And they hunted the men
of Middle-Earth and took their goods and enslaved them, and many they slew cruelly
upon their altars [...] And men feared them, and the memory of the kindly kings
of the ancient days faded from the world and was darkened by many a tale of dread"


It is also said that when the fleet of Numenoreans moved west towards the land of Aman,
they did not care for the wind, because they had "many strong slaves to row beneath
the lash". Perhaps some ancestors of Rohirrim were among these slaves? some nice young
men like Eomer and Eorl?...

So... I really do not think that "Numenorean genes" alone could explain all excellent
human qualities of Faramir!
Yes, but 'bad parenting' cannot explain any. An abused childhood would have produced a different creature altogether - not the sensitive, gentle, self-assured man that Faramir obviously was. His qualities were mostly due to his Numenorian heritage - Tolkien did emphasise the importance of hereditary factors, and a simple example would be Bilbo, who "got something queer in his make-up from the Took side". Or the countless references to Aragorn's noble behaviour because he was Isildur's heir. Or Luthien's powers, derived from the union between Elf and Maia, and so on.

Wisdom due to experience - that's true for most of the characters. Frodo grew wiser as he went through hardship, Sam became more cosmopolitan as he became more exposed to the outside world, and even Boromir could, perhaps learn and become wiser & more patient had he lived. Tolkien may have acknowledged the value of nurturing the inexperienced or the ignorant, but that's for general consumption, not solely in 'family ties'.

As for your Numenorian examples - well I haven't read the UT so I can't comment on that, except that the men of Numenor 'turned from the righteous path', so to speak, during the reign of Tar-Ciryatan (12th king) and the whole race never really recovered - leading to their downfall when the broke the Ban of the Valar.

During their last days, they were indeed cruel and wicked, and even worshipped Morgoth - but then in Silm, it has to be remembered that the original seed of Numenor (Elros) was 'good' - and Numenor was raised from the sea as a reward for the loyal Edain who had fought on the Valar's side in the War of Wrath. And the Numenorians didn't always enslave the men of Me - earlier on they sailed to ME and helped heal, teach & comfort the men there (who had been forsaken by the Valar in the first place for serving Morgoth).

Not that this has anything to do with the topic, but I don't think that you could judge the 'Numenorian gene' by the behavior of the latter generations - and even then, there were still the faithful 'Elf friend' like Elendil etc, who chose to not to stray from the 'right path'.
Your arguments are so convincing Ungoliant that I simply must think it all over!
Anyway, just two short comments (let's see if I am able at all to make any really
short comment!)
(1) The fact that Demethor favorised Boromir was very painful for Faramir even
when he was a fully adult man (he was 36 at that time if I am not mistaken!).
This is stated directly by Aragorn in the Houses of Healing. He bore it as a man, but
finally that mental suffering induced a depression and almost killed him. When he was
a boy he must have felt in a similar way each time when he found out that he is
treated injustly. I think that such injustice may "sensitize" its victim to the problem of
injustice and may lead to a solemn desire never to be unjust himself.
(2) However, when I thought now once more about how Denethor treated his sons
I realised that although he favorised Boromir, he was very demanding to him, too.
Boromir was not an entirely spoilt child. He is told by Tolkien (in the Appendices
to the ROTK) to be a helper and protector of Faramir, and he always tended to act
as a protector of anybody who was weaker.
Sorry to seem like I'm disagreeing with you all the time, Eryan, but again I took it as Aragorn meaning that the Black Breath, a wound, weariness *and* his father's unfair statements all contributed to Faramir's illness. I think you're reading too much into that statement - "his father's mood" could have meant Faramir being upset over their recent quarrel, his father's despair & depression or his father's unkind words at their last meeting - nothing to do with the way he was brought up or any childhood memories.

I think that it was their recent quarrel that affected Faramir to the point that he became so depressed and thus vulnerable to the Black Breath. Since he too, loved and cared for his brother.

Yes, Boromir was very protective of his brother - I thought it was particularly moving when Faramir said, "Alas for my brother, whom I too loved." Sad that.
Good evening Ungoliant!
Do not be sorry that you disagree with me, I ADORE that! - and I also adore disagreeing
with others Smile Smilie!
Why should one agree with any view if he/she is not convinced?!!!
However I am not someone who always sticks blindly to his views and your arguments
are so serious convincing that I still feel I must think more about it.
Well just now it seems to me that
(1) I still insist that " Numenorean genes" alone (as the sole factor) cannot explain Faramir's kindness (although perhaps
they contributed in an important way to his intellectual powers);
(2) I agree that the tension related to his relationship with his father was only partly
responsable for his depression during the Siege of Gondor; there wre many other
factors that contributed to it as well, as you very rightly remarked in your last post;
(3) I also agree that his depression mighthave been related more to his present quarrel with
his father than to his bad experiences from childhood;
(4) However, I still think that if it that quarrel affected him so much at the age of 36,
similar tensions and injustice suffered during his childhood might have influenced
his personality in a very important way.
Allyssa wrote that Denethor had him flogged for conversations with Gandalf!
Just imagine his feelings - he certainly wanted to be an obedient son... and yet, how could
he be obedient to his father in that matter? He knew very well that he was not doing
any evil! and yet get punished for it.

I hope YOU do not mind that I often disagree with you?
This is only to indicate to guest Faramir fans that there is stil something more about him in another tread, "LOTR and men's minds" in the Section on "FOTR" (book) Smile Smilie
Faramir fans:

You might be interested in Tolkien's letter number 244. It tells us a lot about Faramir's character.

I am still looking for the other reference you asked for Eryan. will post as soon as i find it.
Allyssa
thank you a lot for remembering the reference about physical punishment of Faramir for
his contacts with Gandalf... Smile Smilie Smile Smilie
I am afraid I won't be able to get hold easily of Tolkien's letters. And I am wildly interested
in all about Faramir. Perhaps ypu could just make a short summary of the main ideas?
I also learned a few days ago (from somebody who had read "The History of ME"
(I didn't...) that Faramir - or rather a Gondor captain who meets Frodo in Ithilien -
was originally NOT thought to be Boromir's brother. I forgot his name but I can check it.
Now I understand better something which puzzled me during many years: why Faramir
tells the hobbits first that Boromir was the Captain of the White Guard and that "they miss
him sorely" - and only after a long while he tells them that Boromir was his brother?
It seemed somehow strange for me... Now I think that it's just a relict of an older version
of that chapter in which the Captain of Gondor speaking to hobbits is not related to
Boromir...
Yet one remark about Faramir - Tolkien lays much stress on his being both gentle and
"stern". It's the blend of these two elements which is so irresistibly attractive... I doubt
very much whether the actor playing Faramir in the movie will be able to give justice
to that blend of gentleness and sternness. Physically he is completely unlike to book
Faramir who is told to be very tall, to have long raven hair (remember the scene when his
long raven hair is mingling with the golden hair of Eowyn when he is kissing her
on the walls of Minas Tirith?) and large grey eyes.
He is such a perfect man that we may feel (as you did) that Eowyn is not good enough for
him. But she was a Rohirrim - and he seems to have been attracted to that people long before
meeting her.
Quote:
And we love them: tall men and fair women, valiant both alike, golden-haired,
bright-eyed, and strong; they remind us of the youth of Men

Strong... With all his admirable qualities, Faramir is not so strong as he desires to be.
He does his best (and we love him for that) but he is not as strong as Aragorn.
When I think about real Faramir-like men I met in my life... they all had strong and cheerful
wives!
Quote:
He is such a perfect man that we may feel (as you did) that Eowyn is not good enough for
him.

Hey! He's cool, but not /that/ cool!
Hmm, how did I miss this thread?

No I don't mind at all if you disagree with me, I enjoy reading intelligent & logical arguments as much as anyone. Besides, it's boring if we agree with each other all the time, eh?

I agree with your agreements in (1) to (3). Smile Smilie

Point 4 - that's as logical a point as any I suppose, but I'm still not convinced. I'm a tad suspicious of those kind of arguments (it's the "I became a serial-killer cos someone broke my favourite toy when I was a child" thing)....but who knows, maybe Tolkien intended it that way. Dunno. As for the flogging part, I'm glad that Tolkien had the good sense not to use it in LotR or the appendices. So I choose not to take it into account. Wink Smilie

I think faramir didn't tell the hobbits that Boromir was his brother because he wasn't sure of Frodo/sam and wanted to test them. Besides, he just caught two strangers who knew his brother and happened to be wandering in his territory - so he wanted to interrogate them. I think it makes sense.

Faramir-like men....I've only met one, and I married him. Smile Smilie
Hello Jehanne,
I do not tell the Eowyn WAS "not good enough for Faramir - I immedately
contradicted the statement quoted by you!...
They are both cool - Faramir and Eowyn - each in his/her own way!
Hello Ungoliant,
thanks a lot for these nice warm words - they induced nice warm feelings!
So we can now "disagree happily ever after" Smile Smilie Wink Smilie
However, I think you must have remarked that I VERY often agree with you... and Ialso
enjoy reading your posts, they are so stimulating and full of reall passion!!!
Being married to a Faramir!... O happy woman!!! Sounds absolutely great!!!
As for the role of various internal & external factors in shaping Faramir's personality (or any
other personality...) I also do not like silly shallow explanations taking into account
SOLELY childhood sufferings. However, I never insisted that childohood experiences
explained ALL in Faramir's personality - I only think that they might have had an
important impact.
About what Tolkien intended... I think that great works of art may induce in us
thoughts and feelings not intended by the postAuthorID. And I feel that Tokien's works are not
a product of cool controlled "construction", but above all of unconscious or half-conscious
mental processes. His characters are "alive" and Tolkien often writes about
them in terms of "discovering what happended to them". And he once stated that he wrote
the LOTR "in his life blood, thick or thin"...
I wanted to quote here something that he wrote on that topic in his essay "ON fairy stories",
but I cannot find that fragment - it will be for some other time...
Smile Smilie
Eryan- okay then. good save. I'll call off the hounds. Big Smile Smilie

Although I'm not sure that using her people as an argument for her being "good enough" for Faramir is that convincing. It can be applied to other facets of their relationship, but I'm not sure about that one. You're right, he does seem to have been drawn to the Rohirrim in some respects, but that adds a rather impersonal angle to their romance, doesn't it? It's like dating a girl because she's Jewish or Asian or whatever. She has all these great personal qualities, and as icing on the cake she fits this particular category on the census as well.
Thanks for calling off hounds, I feel so very much safer now! Big Smile Smilie
The argument about her being a Rohirrim was meant to indicate why she was
attractive for him in the first place... Sadly, great personal qualities do not
automatically include love. Friendship, admiration, all that... but they are not enough
to induce love.
Just an afterthought (??? does such an expression exist in English?) to my last post...
Just imagine that Eowyn is a dwarf woman. And all the rest remains exactly the same. She
is fallling in love with Aragorn, kills the Witch King, meets Faramir in the Houses of
Healing...
Frankly... I do not think that Faramir would make her a proposal of marriage.
They might become close friends (as Legolas and Gimli) but that's all I'm afraid...
Smile Smilie
Yeah, "just an afterthought" is a perfectly fine English phrase.

Okay- Eowyn as a dwarf is one funny image, I must say. I read that and immediately IM'd a friend to share, and we both had giggle fits over it. So, thanks for brightening my day, Eryan! Smile Smilie

Anyway, no, I doubt Faramir would have married dwarf-Eowyn. Maybe elf-Eowyn, maybe not. But what if she were a (human) woman of Gondor instead of Rohan? I certainly hope that Faramir's fondness for the Rohirrim wouldn't have counted against her then. That makes him sound a bit shallow. And I like Faramir too much to want that to happen.

So, I see what you mean about his bias, and I even kind of agree. But I don't /want/ to agree!
VERY glad that I could brighten your day Smile Smilie!
Quote:
So, I see what you mean about his bias, and I even kind of agree.
But I don't /want/ to agree!

I see what you mean! I also do not want to agree with my own view!
I always rebel against any form of discrimination...
Poor dwarf Eowyn... so funny and so pathetic...This is a hard, hard world for
those of us which are not lucky enough to be attractive!
As for Faramir's prejudices... he seems to be relatively free of "racial" prejudices,
although he is not wholly free of misdoubt in respect to Elves...
Quote:
Men now fear and misdoubt the Elves, ans yet know little of them. And we
of Gondor grow like other men, like the Men of Rohan; for even they, who are foes
of theDark Lord, shun the Elves and speak of the Golden Wood with dread. Yet there
are among us still some who have dealings with the Elves when they may,and ever
and anon one will go in secret to Lorien, seldom to return. Not I. For I deem it perilous
now for mortal Man wilfully to seek out the Elder People

As for Rohirrim, sadly, the Gondorians did not seem to be all as open and unprejudiced
as Faramir in respect to these people. There was some important reason for
their reluctance to accept mixed marriages between the descendants of Numenoreans
and other, less fortunate humans: Numenorean "blood" was told to have a very strong
impact on longevity... we may understand someone's desire to have long-lived children,
even if we do not approve of any discrimination...
Eowyn herself had very serious doubts whether she will be accepted by Gondorians as a
"proper" wife for Faramir:

quote] Would you have your proud folk say of you: "There goes a lord who tamed
a wild shieldmaiden of the North! Was there no woman of the race of Numenoor to choose?"

Happily he was absolutely decided not to worry at all about all that! and that's why
we like him so much! Smile Smilie[Edited on 18/2/2002 by Eryan]
i do not know why you like faramir he did nothing. He was not the king of both Arnor and Gondor he created no palantir he destroyed no ring he killed no one he was a mere shadow in comparison to his brother and worst of all well that is all
I think that it is already well explained in this thread: we like him because he is nice.
To be liked by people, it is not necessary to do any extraordinary thing, but if you respect others, are interested in their problems and ready to help them, they will like you. And they will be ready to do things for you in their turn.
Some people think that the only way to be successful is to be an invincible champion. There exists another way: to be loved and to have devouted freinds/followers.
Welcome to the forum Morgoththebest. Smile Smilie

Faramir led his men, the Rangers of Ithilien, on a successful ambush raid against the Men of Harad (when Sam got to see his Oliphaunt). He befriended Frodo and Sam and sent them on their way after giving them good advice, a good nights rest, and a restocked larder.

He commanded the force sent to hold/delay the enemies' crossing of the river at Osgiliath at the beginning of the Battle of Pelennor Fields. During the subsequent retreat, he held his forces together until he was stuck down, so that it was an ordered withdrawal rather than a full-fledged rout. This resulted in many saved lives that were available to fight another day.

Because of Faramir, the arrival of the siege engines was delayed, such the Rohirrim entered the battle just as the gate was broken rather than after a force of the enemy were actually within the city.

Faramir displayed all the attributes of a great leader and due to this, the people of Gondor loved him and would have followed him in any endeavor he chose to undertake. Cool Smilie
Yet another great quality of Faramir: he was always ready to take the burden on himself personally, even when he already felt nearly spent after many sleepless nights.
By the way, do you know the book "Animal farm" of George Orwell? There are many animals there and their behaviour symbolizes various strategies taken by humans: pigs are intelligent and selfish, dogs are blindly obedient etc. And there is a horse (I forgot his name): loyal, honest, gentle and well-meaning, always ready to respond to any crisis by a yet greater personal effort: working yet more and more...
You may laugh now, but these two characters seem similar to me - they both induce in me great sympathy and trust.
Boxer the Horse. *wanders off crying now you've brought that up*
Yes, Boxer!
Very sorry to induce crying... but WHO is crying now - Boxer or Plastic Squirrel?
(Sorry for a silly question if this is obvious for everybody but me...)
Ah yes, Boxer. I think he ended up in a Big Mac at the end of the book. Smile Smilie

I thought of him as a Sam-like character...mainly because I wouldn't mind seeing Sam in a hamburger. Unfortunately he ended up with Bilbo's estate. Sad Smilie
Poor Sam! I must tell him that he should really avoid you, Ungoliant!
Yes, Boxer WAS a tragic hero, and the scene in which he is transported to the slaughterhouse and realises at last that he is betrayed by his friends for whom he was constantly making sacrifices haunted me during a long time.
Well Faramir almost died from "overwork" as well...
[Edited on 26/2/2002 by Eryan]
S'me crying, that bit was really sad! Poor Trotsky (oops Boxer). Alright, so he was the proletariat being sold out, but there was no Trotsky in Animal Farm, cos Orwell was a raving Tory, rather than one who liked Socialism in theory but disliked it's practise in the USSR.
*uses Boxer to stick things together with now*
Sorry Plastic - it's been 17 years since I read Animal Farm so I can't quite remember everything. But I do remember a Trotsky - that fat piggie that ran (or was driven) away in the beginning, squealing like a...pig. Squealer was his name? Or something? A couple of chapters after the Crow-Lenin died? Or was the crow Marx...hmm, must read it again. I agree that Boxer was the proletariat though.

Orwell was a raving Tory? I didn't know that. Should have guessed after reading 1984 though.... :o
Just remembered - there was a dog that died early on so he must have been Lenin. The crow was Marx.
Haven't read it in years, I was bluffing again Big Smile Smilie But Orwell, like most of the post-war British was very anti-socialism, hence 1984 and Animal Farm's very existence.
I preferred the movie anyway Wink Smilie
Returning to Faramir... I still did not put here my favourite bits about him.
Here are two from the TT:
Quote:
"For myself" said Faramir "I would see the White Tree in flower again in the courts of the kings, and the Silver Crown return, and Minas Tirith in peace: Minas Anor again as of old, full of light, high and fair, beautiful as a queen among other queens: not a mistress of many slaves, nay, not even a kind mistress of willing slaves. War must be, while we defend our lives against a destroyer who would devour all; but I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness, nor the arrow for its swiftness, nor the warrior for his glory. I love only that which they defend: the city of the Men of Numenor; and I would have her loved for her memory, her ancientry, her beauty, and her present wisdom. Not feared, save as men may fear the dignity of a man, old and wise

And the second bit:
Quote:
They stood under the boughs of the woods again. No noise of the falls could be heard, for a long southward slope lay now between them and the ravine in which the stream flowed. To the west they could see light through the trees, as if the world came there to a sudden end, at a brink looking out only onto sky.
"Here is the last parting of our ways" said Faramir "If you take my counsel, you will not turn estward yet. Go straight on, for thus you will have the cover of the woodland for many miles. On your west is an edge where the land falls into the great vales, sometimes suddenly and sheer, sometimes in long hillsides. Keep near to this edge and the skirts of the forest. In the beginning of your journey you may walk under daylight, I think. The land dreams in a false peace, and for a while all evil is withdrawn. Fare you well, while you may!"
He enbraced the hobbits then, after the manner of his people, stooping, and placing his hands upon their shoulders, and kissing their foreheads. "Go with the good will of all good men!" he said.
They bowed to the ground. Then he turned and without looking back he left them and went to his two guards that stood at a little distance away. They marvelled to see with what speed these greenclad men now moved, vanishing almost in the twinkling of an eye. The forest where Faramir had stood seemed empty and drear, as if a dream had passed
I've been thinking about this for a while, and you know what... I dont' think it's important at all what Tolkien thought about his characters "after" his book was published. From that point it was important what the "readers" thought. His letters post publication could almost be considered destructive. I know writers are always wanting to change the flaws they see in their writing after the publication, but -like art (here we go again) you can't go back with a paint and brush without totally changing the canvas. If given enough time, I'm certain Tolkien could have made Faramir the illegitimate son of a milk man. So I will form my opinions on Faramir based on the books (and the movie when it comes out) and not on any later publication.
Yes - and it's why it's so pleasant to be able still to create a world... Smile Smilie
Anyway, the idea of Faramir as the illegitimate son of a milkman is GREAT!
Another thing, somebody remarked already that Tolkien was really kind for his characters. I read a few days ago that in one of the earlier versions of the LOTR Eowyn had to die. What about Faramir? It's so nice that finally both of them survived... But suppose now that both of them died. LOTR would be even more moving and dramatic... there will be still the victory of Good over Evil, but dearly bought... This would be a quite different story - even more bitter-sweet...
Eyran, you touched upon an article I have been working on about "fantasy fans" and their bend toward happy endings. He could have made Eowyn or Faramir truly tragic (and it would have been very heartwrenching if Faramir died indeed!) but Tolkien was at heart... a fantasy fan. And fantasy fans want to have happy endings. Granted, Tolkien's happy endings aren't "happily ever after" but they are not tragic or overly dramatic and do give the reader at least a great sense of fulfillment.
Yes Faye - very true. Did you already write that paper? I'd love to read it!
In his essay "On fairy stories" Tolkien stresed that the happy ending, the "eucatastrophe", is an essential element of Fantasy, necessary for it to fulfil its major functions: Recovery, Escape, Consolation. And when writing the "Lord of the Rings" he certainly behaved like a fantasy fan. Not only he "saved" Eowyn and Faramir, but also rescued Frodo and Sam from the Mount of Doom, and even the intervention of Gollum which saved the whole quest was a "miracle".
But this is not true in the case of the Silmarilion. Almost all stories are tragic. And yet they are mythical and beautiful.
I am very, very fond of the story of Turin Turambar, especially of its elaborated version which can be found in "Unfinished Tales". Turin is tragic, his father Hurin is tragic, Brandir is tragic... and yet this is a beautiful story. But look now - nobody in this Forum even wants to discuss the character of Turin! I started that thread... and no reply so far!
Are we fantasy fans not courageous enough to face tragedy?
[Edited on 6/3/2002 by Eryan]
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