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GONDOLIN: In The Hobbit, it sounded marvellous --- Golden and Magical somehow --- but in The Silmarillion it seems more Dark and Drab and Serious.
I think that's true for a lot of things when you compare The Hobbit to the rest of Tolkien's writings. Just look at the role of the Ring: it goes from being a magic trinket that turns you invisible to a weapon designed to conquer the known world. :P
I find it a bit sad. Perhaps in time JRRT might have seen sense, consigned the Silmarillion to a footnote of history, re-written LotR in a more Hobbitian way - and made everyone happy. <img src='/images/smileys/bigsmile.gif' border='0' alt='Big Smile Smilie' /> (AntiEldoSpam4)
There are some people who prefer the more serious style, though. <img src='/images/smileys/wink.gif' border='0' alt='Wink Smilie' /> Personally I like both and wouldn't want to lose either.
I think Gondolin is bright and shiny in the silmarillion, sure it gets demolished, but I feel that makes it all the more fantastic. I personally like the Silmarillion more than LOTR because of the fact that everything in the Silmarillion is beautiful, but sad. And the sad part doesn't make you sad, because you know LOTR comes after, though Middle Earth in the third age seems a bit boring compared to its past...
Everything was better in the past and the older you become the more apparent this seems.
You are clearly not just a pretty nose, Tin, you also have an old soul - that means a poetic soul. Mr Tyrant, you have an old soul (presumably that fits perfectly and appropriately inside your body) - that means a nostalgic soul ---- poor soul! Got one of them myself ---- sad business all round. Why do I feel both happy and sad just now? Am I having a Gondolian moment?
My opinion, for what it's worth: The styles of writing in The Hobbit and the Silmarillion have always had that same difference to me. I often think of The Hobbit in terms of a storybook, and the Silmarillion in terms of a history book. Though I must say that I prefer the Silmarillion to most history books. Much more interesting, despite the huge amount of strange Elvish names just waiting to be mixed up. But, of course, a place described in a storybook and a place described in a storybook are usually going to sound that way. History books are dealing with (sometimes Dark and Drab) Serious Subjects, and therefore sound Serious. Very serious. Storybooks usually make the good parts sound very, very good, and the bad parts sound very, very bad; therefore Gondolin, being good, sounds very, very good in the Hobbit, while in the Silmarillion it sounds more serious. I like both ways of looking at it.
Actually, I think of the Silmarillion as more like The Bible (or the Vedas) than a history book. :ugeek: [b:3n5cfuw8]GB[/b:3n5cfuw8]
Actually, I think of the Silmarillion as more like The Bible (or the Vedas) than a history book. :ugeek: [b:bqrhg420]GB[/b:bqrhg420]
I've always thought that of Silmarillion myself GB. It does afterall start with a Creation story. Its very much an Old Testament style book of ME- a good thing it is more OT as the New Testament is nowhere near as good a yarn (always tricky writing sequals!).
[quote="pettytyrant101":cw8l5xy9]Its very much an Old Testament style book of ME- a good thing it is more OT as the New Testament is nowhere near as good a yarn (always tricky writing sequals!).[/quote:cw8l5xy9] I fear you a being purely cheeky here, cheeky Tyrant.
Who me? :shock:
Well it is quite a bit like genesis and revelations... the beginning and end of the bible.... Actually, the book of Revelations is my favorite because it sounds like something Tolkein would write :lol:
Except Tolkien wasn't a madman - unlike the writer of Revelation. <img src='/images/smileys/bigsmile.gif' border='0' alt='Big Smile Smilie' />
The early parts are quite Biblical in scope (except for the Valaquenta, which reads like the introduction from a textbook) but in the later periods it seems to me more like a historical account, similar to those found in the Appendices of LOTR.
Mythological/Biblical. All the same really.
But more like a broad overview than a single narrative, and thus somewhat reminiscent of introductory history textbooks. :ugeek:
(((Now ---- how dd Beren hunt those monsters in Dorthonion? Must pause to read... illusive quarry this Eldo...)))
No Eldo, I see the Pseudo-historical bits as remarkably similar to all the pseudo-historical bits in the Bible too. I've actually read the Bible straight through from beginning to end a number of times (as well as in bits and pieces), And I think the Whole Silmarillion reads just like the Bible or even the Quran or the Vedas (read a fair bit of that stuff too). A lot of Mythology,Creation etc. then all the begatting of different generations of Elves, Fight with Morgoth, one shot stories (Beren and Luthien), historical bits, Magical Bits. Like Odo says, just like he Bible but without all the Madness. [b:3fj3l6x4]GB[/b:3fj3l6x4]
Ha! There goes that quote I love! (see below in the signature) :arrow:
:lol: A fair point indeed Tin!

And what do you think about Turgon? He was one of the most powerful and noble elves, but, did he enough heroic actions along the Silmarillion tales? I mean, he builds Gondolin (by Ulmo's order, by the way, and the Vala guides him to the hidden place), but he stays there all the time, protected from Morgoth's attacks, and with an arrogant attitude when he was told to leave in the imminent fall of Gondolin.
On the other side, we have some great actions: he crossed the Helcaraxe pass and almost died trying to save his wife and he do saved his daughter Idril, he hides his armour for Tuor to find it, and his end was told as very brave although is not detalled. Also he fought in the Nírnaeth Arnoediad, the only time he went out of the city, and he was helped by Húrin to escape while all the others who stayed died.

I mean, other people like Fingolfin, Fingor or Finrod sacrified themselves if it was necessary (or not, like Fingolfin), but was Turgon maybe overprotected under the fact that Gondolin was the last hope of humans and elves?

Turgon became "effected" by the curse laid on the Noldor by the Valar.  The later proud actions used by Turgon (and others) in ignoring Ulmo's warning was probably a symptom of the curse.  The greed and pride of his Sister Son Maeglin bought him undone.  Was it Turgon who said the it would not be the Dark Lord who destroyed the Noldor, but evil from within the Noldor itself...  Paraphrasing...

Greed, for the Noldor is the cause of all evils it seems.

I love Turgon, and would probaby have done the same thing in hiding away from the rest of the Noldorian princes.  Just would have kept an eye on that Maeglin after the awful actions of his Father.

Those were certainly perilous times Brego. And I too would have kept an eye on him, but it seems to me the very curses themselves that were put upon men and elves seemed to almost call to them, pull them in the direction of the fulfillment of the curses in varying degrees in the lives of the afflicted. Which made the hurt and horror many suffered so much worse to my mind since it seemed there was, at least in many of the cases no hope, no way out. That Frodo should come along far after and enter a sort of curse, something Sauron might have said over anyone finding and keeping and using the One Ring and by a series of miracles , no other word comes to me, he should somehow make it to the end and not receive the natural recompense due to him for failing at the end, is just marvellous. It gives the whole age of men a shine, a splendor that not even the beginning of things following creation by Illuvatar had for me. For in the beginning as it were there was always the fear of something going amiss in paradise and it surely did. Whereas from Frodo on there  was a hope not felt before.

I thought everything about Gondolin was magical and fearful and wonderful all at the same time. The characters were all larger than life, complex, and I am astonished at how most every one seemed stubborn to the point of self destruction, only a few free from this destructive pull upon their minds and hearts.

Too True Lee Lee.  Gosh the professor havd a great Imagination...  I wonder where he got the idea of the location of Gondolin from.  An old volcanic lake, circled by mountains, a lake dried up, a stone hill dead centre, a secret gate.  Amazing its Jules Vern stuff isn't it!

Gondolin was built on the memory of the beauty of the West.  We must remember that Turgon was reluctant to leave until his hot blooded sister gave an inspired and fiery speech.  And at the end of the city, Maeglin had the same pride in what he had created just as Turgon had in his shining city.  And i believe he and many others of the Noldor knew that they would have to pay a very heavy price to receive any help from the Valar.  I think Turgon knew his hidden stronghold would fall as soon as he saw his armor on Tour.  But i also think he was just as proud of the joining of Elf and Man in his house.  Wasn't it inspiring to look across the Tumladen at the Tower of the Fountain glimmering in the setting Sun?. . .


Yes,glimmering in the setting sun, wonderful.

Yet for me, I am rather unimpressed with these marvels of the universe for the reason that to me relationships and earned peace and giving the next generations something more precious than grandeur is more important. And because either of the curse or the amazing haughty pride of these great characters along with seeming lack of understanding of future and consequences and such, there was always because of this a dreadful undercurrent of  impending doom. So no matter what amazing things were accomplished I was always unsettled knowing that something was coming , something that perhaps could have been fended off if larger and wiser counsel was sought by the leaders and those whose actions would surely shape generations to come, if they even survived.

The pride of the Noldor, in my opinion, was a curse in and of itself.  Feanor's oath brought so much heartache on his family, yet I think he would of been proud of it.  And my favorite prince, Finrod Felagund, his pride is why he fulfilled his oath to Barahir and brought about his death fighting wolf-Sauron defending Beren.  Yet that is why I love him so and can only hope I am "Elf" enough to do the same! 

I think the overwhelming power of the oath his why Maedhros, my favorite son of Feanor, did his best to remove it from the world and bring the doom to an end.  I can only hope that the motives and reasons are remembered by Mandos and he treats his wards accordingly.

Well and nobly spoken Finrod, I can see the issues are dear to your heart. As for me, I suppose, believing as I do in the sacred duty of this generation to think hard and far seeing in order to protect, defend and provide for the future generations a life worth living with some measure of peace and stability such as came to Miccle-Earth with the fulfilling by Aragorn that which was prophesied and fulfilled by him and through him  and all those with him doing each hhis or her part. So, knowing the tremendous pressure and grief the curse exerted, I would try to believe that nothing evil in unsurmountable and spend all of my life looking for ways to outwit it believing that Eru and those across the sea could somehow help in this battle. And while not neglecting the need for beauty and legacy in the arts and home , still would I search day and night if need be to remove the curse from the world. And encourage others my generation and the younger to strive also for this.

Turgon was a brave and careful elf, and oh the splendour of Gondolin.

Shame that the city was destroyed by Morgoth.

But as for The Noldor, this part from Blind Guardian's song called 'Noldor' kind of explains some of it all.

'I know where the stars glow, skies unclouded, sweet the water runs my friend

Noldor, blood is on your hands. Tears unnumbered, you'll shed and dwell in pain.'

If only the Valar and certain Noldorian Kings had only listened to Ulmo. No wonder Ulmo liked to keep to him self in the deeps of his oceans. He was probably sick of being right all the time and no one taking heed.