No, not ever would I have followed Feanor. He finally understood the great and evil treachery of Melkor whom he renamed Morgoth, Black Enemy, but he failed to realize that he had himself been corrupted by this very fiend himself, so that when he gave his remarkable speech and the everlasting curse upon Melkor and any other being who would withhold the Silmarils from him or his sons who he commanded really to take up his cause, he also blamed those angelic, I can call them no less,beings above him saying that they had been to blame for letting Morgoth be successful in this. His mind was warped so that on the one hand his cause to recover the Silmarils was just, and Yavannah herself needed them to restore the two trees that Morgoth and Ungoliant destroyed, on the other hand his wrongful blaming showed clearly he was cunningly influenced and believed the lies his true enemy wanted him to believe, thus sowing seeds of distrust and hatred and ultimately causing the terrible kinslayings which is just horrible.
Very thought provoking question Brego! While, in my opinion, Feanor's pride was second only to Melkor's and led to many wrongdoings and much heartache, I think the pride of the Noldor was in part to blame for the Exile from the West. I think many factors led to their leaving. For instance, the persistent and fiery speech Galadriel gave convinced even her brother to leave his mate. Finrod, being my favorite prince, I think went along on the premise that his family would need his help and protection. That noble way of thinking urged many to pick up stakes and leave. Back to Feanor's pride, I think he truly believed he could have saved his father and defeated the Black Thief. I do not think his mind would have been changed even if he knew exactly what would and did transpire as a result of his Oath.
Those things being said, I am afraid I would have left the Blessed Realm for the same reasons Finrod and the more noble Elves did. Family takes precedent over comfort. Although I am sure I would have looked back over my shoulder often and regretted that decision in later years.
For instance, the persistent and fiery speech Galadriel gave convinced even her brother to leave his mate.
Hmm, can we say this with certainty? While I wouldn't necessarily disagree that Galadriel probably voiced her desire to leave here, she is given no actual speech, and is not noted as influencing Finrod specifically (or have I forgotten some text here? I don't recall this at the moment anyway).
It is said that Fingolfin marched against his wisdom, after it had been noted that Fingolfin and Turgon spoke against Feanor -- and Finrod was with Turgon, his friend -- but Fingon is noted specifically as a cause for Fingolfin to march, among other reasons:
'... and a greater host under Fingolfin; and he marched against his wisdom, because Fingon his son so urged him, and because he would not be sundered from his people that were eager to go, nor leave them to the rash counsels of Feanor. Nor did he forget his words before the throne of Manwe.' The Silmarillion
And with Fingolfin went Finarfin, and for like reasons. But what about Finrod? His father was going, and with Fingon were Angrod and Aegnor, so his brothers and sister were going; and even when his father left the March, it was said that the sons of Finarfin would not forsake the sons of Fingolfin.
Did Galadriel give a fiery speech? In The Silmarillion she is described as standing tall and valiant among the contending princes, and eager to be gone, of course, but even Feanor's speech had seemingly not moved Finrod enough at first, and anything Galadriel might had said would likely reveal that she was leaving in any case.
But, as often enough, this is according to one phase of Tolkien's writing. Much later JRRT would describe Felagund:
'Finrod was like his father in his fair face and golden hair, and also in noble and generous heart, though he had the high courage of the Noldor and in his youth their eagerness and unrest; and he had also from his Telerin mother a love of the sea and dreams of far lands that he had never seen (...) 'and like her [Galadriel] brother Finrod, of all her kin nearest to her heart, she had dreams of far lands and dominions that might be her own to order as she would without tutelage.'
So it would seem that Finrod, in this late conception, has been given a similar dream to that of his sister. I'm not sure this was present in the earlier conception. In this late text it is also noted:
'... and his [Finarfin] children were thus kin of King Elu Thingol of Doriath in Beleriand (...); and this kinship influenced their decision to join in the Exile.'
This is new, but at this point (1968 or later) Tolkien would never go back to the 'Silmarillion proper' and write the Flight of the Noldor with this in mind -- nor with the late ideas concerning Finrod in mind, if in fact they were newly imagined as well, that is.
Ah, Galin. Maybe I misremember whether Galadriel influenced her brother. I have read only an older version of Silmarillion and am eager to acquire another and more of Tolkien's writings I have learned about from reading posts on this website.
More likely, it is in my own idealization of Finrod because he is so dear to my heart. His fulfilling of his oath even knowing it would cost his life is what makes him my favorite character. I look forward to re-reading so I can be more accurate in my posts.
And I quite enjoy learning from those of you who have read more on MiddleEarth and love it as much as I do!
you are obviously both noble and humble Finrod and that is a great thing in or out of Middle-Earth.
As for Galin the Careful as I think of him and Brego the Zealous as I call him, i am in breathless awe and wonder when they come in their finery and stand face to face in gentle word and understanding combat. It is thrilling.
Actually I was a bit 'surprised' somehow, reading this later description of Finrod again -- I had read it before, more than once, but never really compared it to the 1977 Silmarillion so specifically.
Anyway I should source it: this is from the late text The Shibboleth of Feanor, in The Peoples of Middle-Earth, but it's also published in Unfinished Tales, as it deals with Galadriel.
And if you love Finrod, as many do (including me), you might be interested in Tolkien's Finrod Athrabeth Ah Andreth, a very interesting conversation between Finrod and a mortal woman, published in Morgoth's Ring.
Thank you for your kind words milady Leelee. And thank you Galin for giving me something new,at least to me, to read about my Prince.
I am looking forward to learning even more from all of you who have steeped yourselves in the lore of Master Tolkien. I am thrilled to have stumbled on this site, for the reason that I know no one personally who has read as much as I have. And then after all these years to find out there is more for me to explore, once again Thank You!
As for Galin the Careful as I think of him ...
LOL Leelee. I take your meaning, but can I sell you on 'wary' instead? It sounds more dangerous to me!
And heck I disagree with even Tolkien himself about Galadriel -- well, I disagree with JRRT about only a couple things concerning Galadriel actually! but I hope the Master would think me an annoying wolf in his camp even when doing so.
Great reading as usual Finrod, Galin and of course Lee Lee (the ever loving).
I have pondered this for years, ever since reading the Sil for the first time, then of course HOME. I think that Feanor's power over his people was great, and the power of his voice and knowledge alone would have swayed even the most strong. I think that I would indeed have gone East, but not with Feanor. I think I would have had my own reasons to return to the East. That is if return it was. I expect that for the Cuivienen born Elves the journey and reasons for the journey would have greatly differed than for those who were born in the West. I expect that for those Elves who had never seen Middle Earth, the lies of Melkor would have clouded their minds with the fantasies of great and easy lives in wide lands not that different from Tuna. What a shock it must have been for these Elves. Lands stained by death and decay. Only dim twilight. Unknown fell creatures everywhere. No Valar to watch over and protect them. This journey would make a great book in itself.
Then of course the journey home after Ages uncounted. I mentioned in another thread, whilst discussing Cirdan, how bizarre it must have been for an Elf as Cirdan. Truly ancient, however finally returning to a long home he had never seen. I suppose that this is the reverse as mentioned above.
Tolkien truly created worlds as diverse and problematic as our own. Even for the glorious Elves...
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