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I must have taken the [i:1t77qerq]'strong'[/i:1t77qerq] pills!
There's nothing [i:1t77qerq]quasi[/i:1t77qerq] about me!
That was just my wee play on your quasi-loremaster comment.
It seemed amusing.
Here's an obvious one; why are the eagles always kept till the last moment before entering the
fray, swooping in for the glory at the end ! Surely, much more use could have been made of them
during the events in both The Hobbit and LotR ? I know Gandalf used them on occasion but I would
have thought they'd have been very helpful in many ways. I wonder if it's because they held
themselves aloof from the toils of ME and only gave their aid when it suited them but did Tolkien
have other reasons ?
The Wise were sort of stuck on this point. Arnor fell apart relatively quickly, but while Gondor was playing Numenor Lite and was at the height of its power, there really wasn't that much evil that needed dealing with. Sauron was nowhere to be found and his servants were defeated and/or tributaries of Gondor. Gondor went through a long, slow decline though: first with the Kin-strife that killed many, then the Great Plague that killed more, then the Wainriders that killed even more, stole much of their territory, and almost ended the Line of the Kings.
Meanwhile, the remnants of Arnor were able to hold out against Angmar with help from the Elves (led by Cirdan and Elrond; of whom at least one was certainly counted among the Wise), but eventually they simply ran out of manpower. While, with the aid of Gondor, Angmar was destroyed; there just weren't enough people to keep the kingdom going, so they became the Rangers.
After the destruction of Angmar there were a few centuries of peace, but then the attacks continued. A long series of conflicts with orcs and Men (in the service of Sauron or otherwise) sapped the strength of the West. Most of the conflicts were victories for the West, else they would have been destroyed long before the War of the Ring, but they became continually weaker. By the time Sauron declared himself Gondor was almost at the end of its strength and they lacked the capacity to launch an offensive against him.
So, while Men were strong they were able to keep Middle-earth free from Sauron, but by the time Sauron returned Men were far weaker and they could do nothing but fight off the successive attacks against the kingdoms of the West. A military offensive was impossible, and of course the way they decided to strike against Sauron was through stealth. Also, there was a prophecy of sorts stating that the Shards of Narsil would not/should not be reforged till the Ring was found. Narsil was a very special sword (it seems to have had magical or pseudo-magical properties; among them shining), and that played a role in making Aragorn [i:5ogp75sb]the[/i:5ogp75sb] heir of Elendil to fight back.
Does that make any sense?
Still doesn't explain why it took more than half a century for Gandalf to get nosey about the ring Bilbo found, given as you say there were plenty prophecies going about that the One Ring was due a re-appearance, I still think it would have been more wise of the Wise to check out any magic ring that turned up during this time period just to be sure.
I think Gandalf in the West before his human form was associated with the same Valar the eagles are. Now generally speaking since the Downfall the Valar seem to have taken a hands off approach to ME and decided instead just to send emmisary's there in the form of the wizards. At Batttle of Five Armies, Isengard, the Battle at the Black Gate and the rescue of the ring-bearers there is a common denominator- Gandalf. My supposition is that the Giant Eagles as tools of the Valar stick to the non-interference policy except (as is a deities prerogative) when they decide not to- all of which seems to centre around Gandalf (including his "resurrection". Hope that sort of helps and awaiting others to correct where my memory fails me or to put forward and alternative explanation.
And maybe He ([i:23k07ed7]She[/i:23k07ed7]!) just liked Eagles!
And maybe He ([i:23k07ed7]She[/i:23k07ed7]!) just thought that Eagles being more involved would mean less story to write - the Eagles could have flown the Ring direct to Mount Doom! - and where would Tolkien's Epic be then?
Anyhow - get your intellectual baggage off my thread!
Don't need to.
We know you Brits are all big bullies!
You with your big once-shiny Empire!
Hey! We Australians became good Sports by standing up to bullies!
Don't think for a moment that I'll stand for it now!
(You big bully!)
(Off to bed with you then... sleeeeeeeeep, my little pretty... Lullabye...lullabye...doo-doo-doo doo-do doo-doo... forget all those pesky books... Lullabye...lullabye... sweet dreams little Scotsman...)
Fair enough, though that only really applies to Gandalf I think, not the rest of the Wise.
It's possible that Gandalf just assumed it was one of the lesser Rings and, not being as well-versed in Ring-lore as Saruman, simply let it drop. He does say in The Shadow of the Past that the Ring made him uncomfortable, but that "something always held [him] back" from talking to Saruman about it. Foresight, perhaps? I don't know.
[quote="Eldorion":j41nqk6m]The purpose of the Fellowship of the Ring, and the linchpin of the entire strategy decided on in Rivendell, was to destroy the Ring in a mission of [i:j41nqk6m]secrecy[/i:j41nqk6m].
Taking the Eagles might have worked, I will grant that. It may have been a successful mission and allowed the Ring to be destroyed earlier than it "actually" was. But it would have sacrificed secrecy and drastically increased the changes of the Ring being captured. When you have the fate of the world hanging in the balance, you don't want to take any unnecessary chances.
Eagles are, clearly, far more noticeable than Hobbits or other travelers on foot. We don't know how exactly Gandalf planned to get into Mordor (presumably it didn't involve the breaking of the Fellowship), but we can surmise that they would have gone through a mountain pass or valley some where. We know of only three (the Morannon, Cirith Ungol, and the Nameless Pass), but it stands to reason that there were more. Not ideal ones perhaps (though Cirith Ungol itself was not ideal), but mountains are not impenetrable and continuous walls of rock.
An Eagle flying through the air would be easily noticed by Orcs or other watchers (remember the sinister and sorcerous ones at the Tower of Cirith Ungol). Travelers on foot could sneak around much more easily, scout ahead (especially with a ranger), and slip by unnoticed (remember how quiet hobbits are?). The Eagles [i:j41nqk6m]might[/i:j41nqk6m] have been able to slip by unnoticed, but it would have been far more likely that they would have been caught. Once inside Mordor (if they even make it), there is still the chance that the Eagles could be caught. There's also the threat of the Nazgul's fell beasts, and archers.
The "classic" Eagle plan, as outlined in the YouTube video, would not work for a couple of reasons. First, the Ring could not just be dropped into the caldera; it had to be taken into the Crack of Doom itself. As the name implies, this is an enclosed space inside the mountain. An Eagles likely would not fit inside, so it would have to bring have a rider. This would limit the height to which it could fly (the rider would need to breathe) and its agility during a fight. Yet more possibilities for failure. Second, a giant Eagle landing on the slope of Mount Doom would be quickly evident to any troops stationed there. A small group of people on foot might be able to sneak up unnoticed. Again, the Eagle plan might work, but it increases the chances of being caught.
The Council of Elrond did not know exactly what to expect in Mordor, so they had to plan for the worst (i.e., assume the worst case scenario for each possible solution). The Fellowship plan was itself a very long shot and indeed, it failed in its original conception, though obviously a fragment of the Fellowship persisted; but the Eagle plan raises such a host of potential issues and problems that I think it is quite understandable why the Council opted to send people on foot. As I mentioned at the beginning, their emphasis was on [i:j41nqk6m]secrecy[/i:j41nqk6m].
(This of course assumes that the Eagles, were they asked, would consent to fly the Ringbearer/Fellowship to Mount Doom.) [/quote:j41nqk6m]
Note: the YouTube video mentioned in the quoted passage is, as I'm sure many of you have guessed, the (in)famous [url=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1yqVD0swvWU:j41nqk6m]How It Should Have Ended[/url:j41nqk6m] clip.
Note 2: The Nameless Pass is mentioned in [i:j41nqk6m]The Two Towers[/i:j41nqk6m], chapter "The Stairs of Cirith Ungol".
[quote:j41nqk6m]Here the huge cliff-face sloped backwards, and the path like a snake wound to and fro across it. At one point point it crawled sideways right to the edge of the dark chasm, and Frodo glancing down saw below him as a vast deep pit the great ravine at the head of the Morgul Valley. Down in its depths glimmered like a glow-worm thread the wraith-road from the dead-city to the Nameless Pass. He turned hastily away.[/quote:j41nqk6m]
[i:2iey76dz]Go to sleep, go to sleep,
Go to sleep little Eldo!
Go to sleep, go to sleep,
Dah-da dahdah daah dah...[/i:2iey76dz]
If an Eagle could carry Gandalf from Orthanc to wherever (I remember reading somewhere they nicknamed him Fatwiz at Hogwarts) that eagle could surely carry Frodo with ease (probably even that, quote, "stupid fat Hobbit" unquote).
And that Airbus-sized eagle would logically fly at Airbus-sized speed, so it would only take about fifteen minutes to fly from Hobbiton to Mount Doom - in my estimation at least (admittedly, Mathematics is not my forte).
As to Frodo (and Sam?) being able to breathe up there - well, surely Gandalf could have given him (them) a potion of some kind, having surely at some stage [i:1geaofmc]taught[/i:1geaofmc] Potions Class. Don't forget our wizard was known by many names! Think about it! Does the name [i:1geaofmc]Dumbledore[/i:1geaofmc] ring any bells? (Anyone with half a brain knows who Dumbledore [i:1geaofmc]really [/i:1geaofmc]was!)
I hope I haven't been too scientific for you, Eldo, but I know you like lots of facts in your debates. If you doubt any of my science, Halfwise will back me up, him being a Physicist and all. (I might say, it's nice to know Physics has some use - even in Middle-earth).
Yaaaaaawwwwwn! Oh excuse me, Eldo! I don't mean to yawn... Hey! Isn't it about [i:1geaofmc]that [/i:1geaofmc]time anyway ... Oh will you just look at the time - and I'm sure you've got plenty of study to do tomorrow...
While an Eagle could theoretically fly at 40,000 feet, I highly doubt that a rider could, even with hypothetical "potions". And it would need a rider, to get into the Crack of Doom (remember how huge Eagles are? ).
Airbus-sized and -speed Eagles would be cool though.
more 'help' on the way (Cirdans ring, the eagles, resurrection even) !!
Whereas Saruman seems to have got all his breaks by his own work !
And yes,The eagle's do seem a little 'crabbit' (another good scots word) when dealing with anyone don't they ?
Perhaps they were asked and just didn't want to take the ring. I suppose even an eagle could have been
corrupted by it ! Then we really would have had trouble !
Thanks also Wise Odo
I feel your second point about divinity (and authors!) wanting mortals to go through some meaningful suffering to get their just rewards is the real reason to not use the eagles. The whole thing could have been wrapped up in one book. I'm sure Tolkien must have been tempted during some of the late night revisions!
NB Thank you Halfwise for explaining the finer points of Ring-bombing. Have none of these 'book-readers' read the [i:2qvsu2bx]Dam Busters[/i:2qvsu2bx], pray tell? I knew you'd come though for me. But, dear Halfwise, you know as well as I do that the Great Eagles never [i:2qvsu2bx]waddle[/i:2qvsu2bx]; the Lesser Eagles, yes, but [i:2qvsu2bx]never [/i:2qvsu2bx]the Great Eagles! (And you know it, you trickster!)
NB Hail Manwe, you must supply the meaning of [i:2qvsu2bx]"crabbit"[/i:2qvsu2bx] (I'm too busy just now to intuit it). It is exactly the kind of word I would use. My waters, though slightly muddy, tell me as much! I should hate to use it incorrectly and thus annoy the Scots. (You know how I hate annoying people - even you wee Scots!)
NB I'm head down bum up and will return presently!
No indeed! They strutted majestically with gleaming eye and stately, wagging tuckus!
[i:3kj8l97y]We flew high on the winged wind,
O'er clouds of broiling broily whiteness,
While below lay Man and very Sin,
Alack the lack of good old rightness!
Down flew we bathed in resplendent sunshine,
Oh Great And Glorious wings with wagging tuckus,
We were soaring and erring on the fun-side,
While Evil Men on Earth did try and duck us!
Still brings a tear to my eye, old son, even now when I've grown old and cynical. Tradesmen (especially electricians) would often sing the words on building sites. Perhaps it's just coincidence, Halfwise, that you mention it, but the Religious might call this "part of God's Great Design," and the Scotsman Taoist, "a wee spot of silly-wisdom." The bottom line: you have moved me!
I am sure you will love this word :
Crabbit; Grumpy - Grouchy - Angry - Cross - put out -Of foul mood, are just sum of it's meanings !
Uses include 'she's a crabbit old cow' - for a mean aunty / bad tempered neighbour.
'he's a crabbit wee bugger' - for a crying child / moody teenager.
"I'm crabbit because it's raining"! Is commonly heard.
No - sorry - it was Burns! Never mind....
[i:udytn62j]I were once out in the forest huntin' rabbit,
When the Scottish rain (as is it's pesky habit),
Poured off the shoots,
Down in my boots,
And home I went just that wee bit crabbit!
Briefly, I particularly enjoyed the Eagle discussion. I love that Youtube video Eldo posted. It's been one of my faves since I discovered it a year or so ago.
This thread is called [color=#FF0000:384e1ouw]"ODO."[/color:384e1ouw]
There is another: [color=#BF0000:384e1ouw]"SCIENCE FICTION."[/color:384e1ouw]
If you have any further problems, I'm happy to send a diagram!
I'm now wondering what the Scottish for [i:299yck5k]darn tootin'[/i:299yck5k] is? Have you got another wonderful expression, Mr Tyrant?
Wise Odo, what do you think should be done about these kind of people?
with kindest regards,
You know, I am minded of a verse from Longfellow's great epic: "The Slaying of the Silly People."
(From Canto CXXXIV):
Oh we hear their chatter!
But it does not matter,
Their deep wisdom akin
To a fart in the wind..."
The secret is to tolerate these kind of people, Mr Banks, while gently stroking their tuckusses (so to speak). You and I must be Forbearing Guides, leading these misguided folk on the narrow path to Wisdom. Hey! They bury themselves in books and think themselves wise.
I must say, Mr Banks, you sound both wise and good looking; a true seeker of Wisdom in all it's Handsomeness; a very fine hobbit indeed!
I wonder how many Odo's there are?
You'll probably know these two rabblerousers above. They cause all sorts of grief and trouble on other threads (quite uncontrolled kinds of people as you know), and now we are presented with some of their resentful nasty kind of talk when we only engaged each other in sensible, dare I say, [i:3s35wj6m]respectable [/i:3s35wj6m]conversation. Fancy suggesting that you and I are peas in a pod! I am of course, not offended by the notion, but I do feel nonetheless they are twisting the idea to negative purpose, and what I find most offensive is that they're shooting with bent arrows.
I am keen to hear your thoughts on this.
yours with utmost respect and filial devotion,