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Thread: Week 3 - Nature of Humans

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And the log for this discussion is posted below:

Session Start: Sun Oct 27 00:00:00 2002
[21:02] I think we shall start with Faramir's discussion with Frodo.
[21:03] He revealed a lot about Men in this discussion. About the men of Gondor and others.
[21:04] Obviously, characteristics of Men were different than the other races in ME
[21:04] What did he reveal about the Men of Gondor?
[21:04] physical characteristics maybe,
[21:04] but motives, may be not
[21:04] they were in decline
[21:05] what were some of the indications of the decline?
[21:06] * Valedhelgath has joined #Bilbos-Study
[21:06] * Barliman sets mode: +v Valedhelgath
[21:06] is everyone thumbing through the chapter?
[21:06] thought that the enemy were asleep
[21:06] ok
[21:07] there is more.
[21:07] back to thumbing
[21:07] What's the question
[21:08] wanted to live longer
[21:08] * MellieSleep has joined #Bilbos-Study
[21:08] * Barliman sets mode: +v MellieSleep
[21:08] What were some of the indications that Men of Gondor were in decline?
[21:08] built expensive tombs
[21:08] * MellieSleep is now known as Mellie
[21:08] Shorter lives
[21:08] good, you are on the right track
[21:08] Feared death
[21:09] Men of Numenor for the most part fell into evils and follies. Not to say that evil cratfs were ever practiced or that Sauron was honoured in Gondor fro the old wisdom and beauty from the West remained.
[21:09] How was Faramir different than the typical man of Gondor?
[21:10] very suspicious of other races
[21:10] especially the Elves
[21:10] He still conducted the old rituals
[21:10] yes
[21:10] looking west at meals etc
[21:11] he felt war was the means rather than an end
[21:11] How did he contrast to Boromir?
[21:11] He could look into men's hearts
[21:11] Boromir saw only physical strengths
[21:11] thought things out more thoroughly
[21:12] right
[21:12] Was Boromir more typical of the Men of Gondor?
[21:12] I would say yes
[21:12] Eomer described him as being like the old lords of Rohan
[21:12] faramir could see that pure strength was not what was going to defeat ANY enemy
[21:13] let alone sauron
[21:13] That is definitely the impression I got from Faramir's words.
[21:13] Gondor Men came to love war and valour, as Middlemen, esteemed the warrior above men of other craft.
[21:13] in that description, boromir WAS a typical man then
[21:14] They had been on the front line so long it had become a way of life for them
[21:14] He names different nations of Men categorizing them into 3. What were the 3?
[21:14] The men of Gondor were becoming more like the Middlemen then the Men of the West
[21:14] Men of the West being considered as the High Men
[21:15] Men of darknes, men of light, and men of twilight
[21:15] Men of Twilight being the Middlemen
[21:16] One of Val's quiz answers
[21:16] Men of Darkness being wild. Darkness here referring to unenlightened
[21:16] where did the Rohirrim fit?
[21:16] * Barliman sets mode: +o Valedhelgath
[21:17] middlemen
[21:17] They were not High Men
[21:17] I'd say middlemen
[21:17] yep. Was the influence of the Rohirrim that brought the Men of Gondor closer to Middlemen?
[21:18] Rohan blood was concidered to have weakened their own blood
[21:18] How does Faramir describe the Rohirrim?
[21:18] Kin-strife and all that
[21:19] enhanced in arts and gentleness
[21:19] yes, go on
[21:20] physical description?
[21:21] When I read this I had the sense that Faramir admired the Rohirrim.
[21:21] goldend haired, bright-eyed and strong
[21:22] tall men, fair women, valiant both alike.
[21:22] I found that interesting that he referred to the woman as valiant.
[21:22] especially given that Eowyn had to dress as a man to go into battle.
[21:22] they also had to protect their homes
[21:23] the women, you mean, Grondmaster?
[21:23] yes
[21:24] yes, but notice that Faramir does not mention women of Gondor.
[21:24] their weren't any but Ioreth?
[21:24] And he married a woman of Rohan
[21:25] I guess that shouldn't come as any surprise then.
[21:25] they were probably frilly ivory petastal sitters
[21:25] Faramir also mentions and describes characteristics of other races of men to Frodo
[21:27] I think you may be right in that Grondmaster. Since Men of Gondor were considered High Men, it stands to reason that the women would also more gentile, so to speak
[21:28] Did anyone notice what Faramir said about the Haradim?
[21:28] He compares the Rohan favouribly but says they are unlike the Wild Easterlings and Haradrim
[21:29] Cruel
[21:29] and the folk of the Sea Coast?
[21:29] No chivalry
[21:30] They were dark
[21:30] and sturdy
[21:30] chivalry seemed to be a trait of the Northmen
[21:31] Easterling?
[21:31] which is why the men of gondor took to th northmen
[21:31] much more civilized.
[21:32] Can you name the different Men who fought in Pelennor Fields
[21:32] for both sides.
[21:33] the Dunlendings, the Haradrim, the Suothrons, and the Easterlings were all unenlightened
[21:33] yep, these were the Wild Men
[21:33] Haradrim, Rohan Men of Minas Tirith, Lammedon, Anfalas
[21:33] Belfalas
[21:34] Dunedain
[21:34] how are the Far Harad described?
[21:34] Lebinnin
[21:34] Very dark
[21:35] actually, Tolkien does use the word "black" here.
[21:37] the movie, Elrond says : "Men are weak"
[21:37] He is describing their will power
[21:37] Does this mean that there is no hope for Middle Earth?
[21:38] There were Men who were not weak
[21:38] They could carry the day
[21:38] who?
[21:39] faramir
[21:39] Aragorn, Faramir, Eomer, Imrahil
[21:39] Many of the captains
[21:39] At the end of the day, maost of the Rohan and gondorians were strong men
[21:40] The men of light or tending towards the light
[21:40] but could aragorn and eomer, with their respective armies, defeat sauron by themselves
[21:40] The Men of Dale and the Beornings fought bravely too
[21:41] No, without destroying the ring, Middle earth was doomed
[21:41] Of course not they had no magic
[21:41] Do you still see a distinction between 3 categories of Men at the end of ROTK?
[21:41] Only the good and the evil
[21:42] so would you say High and Wild. or Middle and Wild?
[21:42] And even Saruman was seen as being a shadow of his former self
[21:42] middle and wild
[21:42] The only high men would be the small group of Rangers
[21:43] i don't think they would ever consider themselves high
[21:43] Which became somewhat smaller
[21:43] High men had vertually ceased to be in Middle earth
[21:43] I agree.
[21:43] which then is why Elrond said they were weak
[21:44] High men probably still resided in Umbar but they had turned evil
[21:44] Corsairs?
[21:44] They were weak compared to the men he knew in the past
[21:44] what distinguished high from middle
[21:44] They were Numenorians but their blood had been diluted with Haradrim
[21:45] good question. Knowledge and enlightment. and Numernorian blood
[21:45] probably more blood than any other trait
[21:45] Remember Castamir's forces fled to Umbar and were very xenophobic
[21:45] Dunedain, Ranger and Men of Gondor
[21:45] Gondor's was thind with Rohirrim blood
[21:46] Would the return of Isildur's heir not place Men of Gondor high again.
[21:47] The kin-strife was started over this thinning and the losers fled to Umbar. They'd have preserved their blood lines
[21:47] Aragorn's return would have been like a reformation
[21:48] but they were not honorable
[21:48] the umbars
[21:48] Pride would have been gained in themselves
[21:49] Elven blood had again entered the line too
[21:49] would they have strove to be better with a rightful ruler in place?
[21:49] I don't think Gondor could place itself high above those who helped save Middle Earth
[21:49] Eldarion should have expected a long life
[21:49] gondor was just as instrumental in saving ME
[21:50] But Gondor would have failed on its own.
[21:50] any body would have failed on its own
[21:50] They all would have failed on their own
[21:50] Aragorn and Eomer were "friends" after the war and campaigned together. He was careful to say friend rather than indicating rank
[21:51] tolkien wrote about tolerance between peoples
[21:51] That is an important point actually.
[21:51] eveyone had to work together
[21:51] men couldn't have done it alone
[21:51] definitely hobbits couldn't
[21:51] only the elves had a chance on their own
[21:52] The age of elves was over
[21:52] and the age of Man begam
[21:52] Only Men stood a chance on their own
[21:52] i will get to that in the simil later...i guess
[21:52] questionable as it is
[21:52] i was talking about detstoying the One Ring
[21:53] They could never unite under one banner, however, and never had done
[21:53] *destroying
[21:53] no, but there was more respect for each other.
[21:53] not at the beginning of the fellowship, i don't think
[21:54] no, the respect came later as they had to work together.
[21:54] i think that boromir thought that Men could handle it
[21:54] There was a lot of mistrust between everyone before the fellowship
[21:54] Gandalf was instrumental in pulling people together
[21:55] Boromir was proud, fearless and often rash
[21:55] But that was one of the powers of Narya
[21:55] so the Elven powers were at work then, bringing Men together?
[21:55] but hink of how gandalf was lost in their first trail in moria
[21:55] *think
[21:56] I think the power of the ring assisted Gandalf in what he was trying to do
[21:56] Aragorn had to step up and take the leadership role to keep the Fellowship going
[21:56] unwittingly assisted, maybe?
[21:56] But that was why Cirdan had given it to him in the first place
[21:57] yes, because a Man had to take the role, if ME were to survive
[21:57] The time of the Elves was ending.
[21:57] It was the time of men, so they had to be the main instigaters of their own fate
[21:57] precisely
[21:58] Gandalf just made sure they got it right
[21:58] ..and Hobbits were considered a branch of Men, so to speak.
[21:58] so had to play a significant role, as well
[21:59] They'd just been overlooked since year dot, and still were being
[21:59] perhaps there was good reason why they were overlooked and why Gandalf made sure of that.
[21:59] I don't think they were a branch of men
[22:00] Gandalf had got Bilbo involved with Thorin to prove their worth
[22:00] It is thought that they appeared on ME about the same time as man,
[22:00] and to bring them into the world affairs
[22:00] the were an offshoot of men way back when
[22:01] like the pygmies og Africa
[22:01] But Bilbo proved his worth amongst the dwarves and the elves.
[22:01] of*
[22:01] Second born maybe, but I'd disagree with them being men
[22:02] made it easier for Frodo to take on the role as Ringbearer.
[22:02] i think that frodo is more highly regarded than Bilbo is
[22:02] Convenient
[22:02] But men still knew little of hobbits, and they were the biggest opponents of the hobbit being the ringbearer
[22:03] Do the elves show Bilbo true respect or do they humour him?
[22:03] It was destined to play out the way it did.
[22:03] i think that they humor him
[22:03] I think the elves come to respect Bilbo.
[22:03] Eru at work in the background again?
[22:04] They listen to his poetry, but it is clumsy besides their own
[22:04] they humoured him at first. But he turned out to be more clever than they expected.
[22:04] there is more to hobbits than meets the eye
[22:04] Maybe their way of keeping ties with Hobbits
[22:05] The poetry of Man is interesting. When I read the poetry of the Rohirrim, I feel the beat of horse hooves or drums.
[22:05] as opposed to the musical lyrics of the elves.
[22:06] Bilbo's and Sam
[22:06] s poetry is almost childlike.
[22:08] Bilbo and Sam were rustics; the Elves were anything but
[22:08] Sam's poetry is even less eloquent than Bilbos.
[22:09] Sam was iliterate until Bilbo taught him his letters
[22:10] Was there any Gondorian poetry?
[22:10] The desire for immortality caused the downfall of Numenor. Did man give up this desire after the defeat of Sauron and the leaving of the Elves?
[22:12] Unlikely... Aragorn laid his life down though
[22:12] With the Elves gone, I don't think there was any desire for immortality. I wonder if Man just wanted to have the same gifts that were given to the Elves.
[22:12] Not if you consider the egyptians
[22:13] Less envy anyway
[22:13] I think a lot of it was the fear of death as much as wanting immortality
[22:14] good point. Even the Dwarves had a longer life span than Man. So death would definitely be something to fear if you were the only race to experience it.
[22:17] Tolkien does hold out hope for Man in LOTR. When Gimli questions the reliability of Man, Legolas says:"The deeds of Men will outlast us, Gimli"
[22:18] And they have
[22:18] but is that a statement about Men like real life men
[22:18] Will the elves and dwarves become just myths and legends to be told to children, yet the deeds of man to become history.
[22:18] like us
[22:19] If the elves and dwarves all leave they will become myth
[22:19] it is obvious that tolkien wrote this epic on many levels
[22:19] Or ar we just part of someone else's story? Smile Smilie
[22:20] No question, Tolkien had many threads and levels in LOTR. That is why I find something new everytime I read part or all of it.
[22:21] right Val, which is why Legolas could make such a prediction.
[22:22] Next week I would like to cover the Half Elven.
[22:22] And even the Ents had already become creatures of legend
[22:23] too bad no one had a camera for the defeat of Isengard. Who would ever believe Merry and Pippin on that one.
[22:25] That pretty much covers it for tonight.