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Thread: Narn I Hîn Húrin

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am I totally mistaken or is there no thread about this chapter yet?
in my opinion the narn is one of Tolkien's absolute masterpieces, though unfinished it may be. there are so many fascinating characters and fates and the whole story is just breathtaking. I think it's among Tolkien's best thought-out ones.T’rin is one of my favourite Tolkien characters, he's simply fascinating and astonishing, anyway I can't help wondering at him and his story.
anybody in here who thinks about the narn in a similar way? any other thoughts?
i prefer the story of Beren and L’thien.

Turin was too much a loser for me, and even more since it wasn't even his fault he was one.
Bloody Turin and many of his aliases are covered under Characters. I found a link curently on page 2 and two more on page 5.
Hey! Turin wasn't a loser! He just happened to be the unfortunate one chosen as Fate's plaything... Dead Smilie
in my opinion calling him a loser is not quite what he deserves. reading the story I thought he was a most fascinating character, he always fought on, no matter what. I mean, he could have given up and committed suicide or something like that, but he didn't. he was clever, brave and merciful (yeah, not always, but mostly...) and he achieved quite a lot. hey, he killed a dragon. he shouldn't be underestimated just because he didn't become king or something like that in the end. there are already quite enough happy endings... his story is simply completely different.
I admit I'm a bit into that guy, but he's one of Tolkien's very best characters and I really like him and personally don't think he's a loser at all.

as for the other threads... I thought I had taken a look there, but I must have checked only the first page... if I have time I'll put in my two bits there, too...
mean, he could have given up and committed suicide or something like that, but he didn't. he was clever, brave and merciful (yeah, not always, but mostly...) and he achieved quite a lot.

In the end, he did give up and committed suicide. From the beginning till the end, he fought against windmills.

He was just the unluckiest guy in the history of Middle-Earth, that's all.

there are already quite enough happy endings... his story is simply completely different.

None of JRRT's endings are 'happy'. They're all bittersweet.
None of JRRT's endings are 'happy'. They're all bittersweet.
Yup, even the ending of The Hobbit, where Bilbo has to spend most of his recently aquired hard-earned treasure in buying back the furnishings of Bag End.
I don't really have a problem with Turin; he's kind of like what the Noldor would be if they'd been a single Man. Which is weird, considering his rearing. However, given what got Morgoth cheesed at Hurin in the first place, Turin was just another victim of the Doom of Mandos. Caught between the Vala and the Valar, with the Noldor and Sindar thrown in, he had no hope of escaping disaster. That said, he did better than many of the Eldar under those circumstances.
However, given what got Morgoth cheesed at Hurin in the first place, Turin was just another victim of the Doom of Mandos.

I believe Morgoth really cheesed nothing at H’rin. No Vala had the power to 'curse' somebody, what would mean the power to steer someone's fate. Note that after he put his curse on H’rin, he quickly sent out Glaurung to pester T’rin. So much for a curse. In the end, it was only a part of Morgoth's grand design to trash Gondolin and Doriath. Morgoth messed up H’rin's son, so that the latter would become angry and give Morgoth some 'hints', i believe.

Even the Doom of Mandos wasn't instated by the Valar. All the misery that happened because of it, all happened because it was part of that branch of the possibility-tree (there we go again) set in the Music of the Ainur.

Mandos merely announced to F’anor and Co that they were in a bit of trouble...
Well, everyone has free will in Middle Earth, but that includes the Valar, and none of them was greater than Morgoth. The incident with Beleg certainly wasn't Turins choice, or the separation from his mother and sister/wife with all the misery that caused. If you factor in "Mogoths Ring" the chance that Morgoth took a direct hand increases. And, of course, there's another point: if Morgoth didn't have the power to back up his words, he wouldn't have set Hurin to watch his family be destroyed. It's that fate vs. desitiny thing again: Turin couldn't escape destruction, but he got to pick the manner of his doom. Granted that flies in the face of my "nothing is destined, but some things are fated" but I didn't write the Quenta Silmarillion.
I've just read Morgoth's Ring and well,it throws light on a lot of things in the Sil. Let's just say that Morgoth was the real cause of all this tragedy. He was the one who made all the trouble and if there's anyone to blame it's him. He turned many fates against many of the people (feanor, turin) and uses their pride and craziness (admit it, sometimes turin was quite crazy) to achieve his own evil devices...
Narn I Hin Hurin was one of my favourite stories, it is such a tragedy.
It is so sad, I somehow feel bad that I know everything that I know while
Im reading it, if you follow me.
The story of Turin bothered me the first time I read the Silmarillion. It still bothers me when I think about it. I'd like to post something brilliant but all I have is a question. I see many posts saying that Turin was a great character, and all that jazz -- but does this story not "bother" anyone else's sensibilities? I wish there was something more to it -- after reading the end of his part in the story, I felt like saying "how pointless!"
Just what did Turin achieve to make his mention in UT and the Silmarillion so important as not to be pointless...

1. He killed Glaurung, the father of dragons.
2. He tied up Melkor's forces and kept several important passes open for many a year.
3. He inspired Finrod to change his tactics from hide and shoot to stand and fight. Not the best of decisions because it brought down Finrod's kingdom. Its a bad point, but very important.
4. The whole episode was for Hurin's benefit. Watching the curse play itself out on his family was aimed at driving him mad. It worked, and once released he led Morgoth's forces directly to Gondolin. In effect, that is the whole point of Turin. He was a good guy, but the whole point to the story is the part he inadvertantly played in bringing about the fall of Gondolin.
T’rin and H’rin were merely Morgoth's pawns, whom he used to annihilate both Nargothrond and Doriath, and getting an idea of the whereabouts of Gondolin. That was their onely use, really.

Morgoth gladly sacrificed his dragon in order to achieve this. After all, he was breeding a whole armada of flying dragons - and compared to Ancalagon the Black, Glaurung was a harmless little lizard.

So no, I wouldn't really consider T’rin's actions to be pointless. I'd call them hopeless.
I agree about the not pointless but hopeless thing. Turin just did everything wrong because Morgoth had planned everything out for him, and well, let's say that it's not exactly a happy thing to be under a curse of Morgoth, or any Vala (the Noldor suffered a good deal under the curse of Mandos), and no matter how you resist it it will never go away until you die of course. But it's not pointless because it plays a part in history and lays a foundation for later events (such as Hurin bringing the Nauglimar to Thingol) that affect those who are not under the yolk of the Valar (though perhaps under the yolk of Fate).
When we are talking about Narn ....... how is it that there is nothing here about the upcoming publishing of "The Children of Hurin " ....

I know that I can't wait to get my hands on that book......

Sorry just saw that there is a thread about it.....
i started reading the Hobbit (stopped in the middle),and the children of Hurin(still reading)i rather like children of Hurin than the Hobbit.i like the character Hurin,i admire him.
I think The Hobbit was meant more like story for children. Though it made part of the entire idea for Arda and set the grounds for LoTR, it can not be compared with other sources as Silmarillion, Lord of the Rings or Unfinished tales. I like "The Hobbit" a lot. It was the book that made me "love" Midlle Earth and Tolkien's universe at large.
The Silmarillion, etc., is the fruit of a cocoa plant - picked perhaps, and maybe roasted, but not much else. Some of it is, perhaps, like a good baking chocolate, or like cocoa nibs, or perhaps unsweetened cocoa powder.

The Hobbit is a sweet milk chocolate.

The Lord of the Rings is a really nice dark chocolate, maybe 50 or 60%...

I haven't read the Children of Hurin but I have a feeling it's more like 75% or 85%...

correspondingly, more adults than children prefer the darker chocolates, and more children than adults prefer the milk chocolate, although by no means is any one excluded from liking either kind by age or maturity alone.

One does generally have to have a sense of how to use baking chocolate before enjoying it, though I have heard of people liking plain cocoa nibs at first taste.

*SPOILERS* The end of the Children of Hurin almost made me cry... when Hurin's daughter and Turin are dead, and Hurin finally finds his wife lying by their graves, and he holds her in his arms and she dies... I think that was a real, true portrayal of Morgoth's evil more than anything else. Even the Nirnaeth Arnoediad (which wasn't as deep or personal apart from when Hurin sent Turgon to Gondolin to guard the last hope for Beleriand, and Hurin alone slew seventy trolls and orcs, when he knew he would be captured or die), even though far more people died, did not touch me as much as this story.

Yeah, the chain of events in that book was unbelievable, and yes, Morgoth's evil knows no bounds. He did even put Húrin to sit upon that seat atop Thangorodrim, and from there, he could see through Morgoth's eyes and could only watch, how his son and daughter would both take their lives in the end.

It was all so tragic..

In my opinion, it was the accidental death of Beleg, which made Túrin to take the path that led him to his demise, but Glaurung also had his part in it all.

Anyway, time to cut the spoil. Smile Smilie

It is the entire plot of "Narn i hin Hurin" that weaves into one glory and fall, hatred and love, power and weakness. It is maybe the life itself- struggle for survival, labyrinth of choices. And death is the natural end of all. Only in this case the end comes before the goals are achieved and therefor we are somehow "left empty" at the end. It is because we always look for the GOOD to be the winner at the end. Only when one realizes IT IS NOT THE END with the end of these particular heroes, then you can go on and accept it.

BEYOND the lore of Tolkien: During the "cold war" we used to say that the main difference between the hero of the West and the hero of the East lies at the end of the movie, where the Western hero kills all bad guys and makes the world better place to live, while the Eastern hero dies dramatically and heroically for his/hers cause, leaving plot for the next generation to continue the same battle over and over again. It's just memories now, but Tolkien's heroes from this particular work are much like GUERILLA warriors.

In my opinion, I feel that this particular story comes out of some kind of deep grief that found its way out of the hidden recesses of theh professer"s heart and so it was horrific and utterly hopeless. I say this because in Letters when Michael I think it is, is just worn out and had lost his faith , his father JRR tells him to go forth and take heart and believe , giving hope that God cared and would get him through that.  And I feel that , when he originally started writing  this , he had lost so many and was so broken and tired that he never applied what he believed just in principle to this story. If he had, I think he would have had, at some time, Illuvatar do something rather nifty to thwart a mere creation and there would have been some sort of victory. Well....I honestly believe he was in a terrible state of mind, even if noone else knew, when he wrote this. Because it is really hell on earth like war time is for the common person. Full of grief and horror after horror and no good endings at all. In those times it seems only the dead are blessed and at peace, the living are not living at all.

Hurin's face off with Melian and Thingol, for me tugged at the heart strings.  The moment that Melian breaks the final bonds of the evil of Melkor and Huin can see and feel the truth breadth of the whole evil mess unclouded is astoundingly written, in very few words.... 

LeeLee wrote: (...) Well....I honestly believe he was in a terrible state of mind, even if noone else knew, when he wrote this. 


But remember this story was written and reworked at various times during Tolkien's lifetime.

The tale is generally tragic and Tolkien himself personally knew tragedy, but (for example) the long version as Christopher Tolkien constructed it is based on work dating from the 1950s (and not all written at one time during this decade), and the story in general already had taken shape in various forms -- long and short prose forms for example, and poetic -- since before The Lord of the Rings.

But it may hearten you LeeLee that in an early version of this story: after casting the gold at Thingol's feet, Urin (Hurin) departs Tinwelint's (Thingol's) halls and goes to Hisilome and dies -- yet it is said that his shade sought Mavwin (Morwen) and long they haunted the woods about the Silver Bowl bewailing their children.

OK, that's not the good part


Yet after a while it is said they passed to Mandos, and the prayers of Urin and Mavwin came to Manwe, and:

'... the Gods had mercy on their unhappy fate, so that those twain Turin and Nienori entered into Fos' Almir, the bath of flame, even as Urwendi and her maidens had done in ages past before the first rising of the Sun, and so were all their sorrows and stains washed away, and they dwelt as shining Valar among the blessed ones, and now the love of brother and sister is very fair;...'


Now obviously this is early stuff in any event, but it might help to try to keep in mind that this tale is but one of the Three Great Tales set within a larger context of stories, from which Earendil will ultimately spring. 

 Brego wrote: The moment that Melian breaks the final bonds of the evil of Melkor and Huin can see and feel the truth breadth of the whole evil mess unclouded is astoundingly written, in very few words....  


Not that you said or thought otherwise, but it might be noted that Tolkien himself didn't write this part it seems. With respect to the ruin of Doriath the 1977 Silmarillion contains some creative elements that are not really found in any of Tolkien's own writings. 

Part of Melian's speech (in the 1977 Silmarillion) is attested in any event: 'He that sees through the eyes of Morgoth, willing or unwilling, sees all things crooked' was written by JRRT himself, but these are not the words of Melian or any character, but hail rather from narration found in The Wanderings of Hurin.


That's not a comment on the impact of this scene, positive or negative, I'm just adding that we don't really know what would have been said in any detail (in a post-Lord of the Rings context) when Hurin stood before Thingol and Melian, as sadly and once again, JRRT abandoned The Wanderings of Hurin before this moment arrived.

Well said Galin, but  I believe from the Letters that the grief of his papa never coming to be with them, and the grief of his mother and all she suffered for her belief always stayed with him. Like a friend of mine once said about his own self"I carry my grief like a suitcase" I think at times the pain was worse and influenced his work.

Hey I noticed it is near impossible to say the title of the book when your glands are swollen. nope can't be done.

I think that this is probably my favourite work by Tolkien... I mean yes, most of the others were epic journeys infused with camaraderie etc etc but this... This is near perfect in my eyes, there's a balance between the lighter side of life and the more treacherous parts... Also, the ending; talk about being the most unfortunate guy in Middle-Earth...