Message Board | Rules

Thread: Caradhras

Bottom of Page    Message Board > Places > Caradhras   

I recall reading something to the effect that Caradhras had an evil will, or, rather, that it somehow didn't take kindly to fellowships traipsing over it, trying to pass it.

Does Tolkien illuminate this train of thought anywhere else? Is the mountain actually against travelers, or just these particular travelers?
Celebr’an & Arwen had often taken that route to travel between Rivendell & Laurelindorenan with impunity until a minor incident wherein Celebr’an ran afoul of a band of Orcs.

I reckon the Lord of the Breath of Arda wanted to test the strength & endurance of those would-be heroes the Fellowship consisted of, and obviously the Nine Runners failed this test and were subsequently sentenced to crawling through the dust & bones of Moria. A rightful punishment, indeed.

But, ironically enough, the foolishness of a Took turned an easy crawl into a frenzied run for survival and led to the death of a Wizard.

I bet the One was really annoyed when the Grey's spirit suddenly came floating upon his doorstep. I can easily imagine him sending this wayward spirit back to whence it came with a casual fling of His Hand.
In 'The Ring Goes South' of FotR, Gimli spoke of the mountain's name as "Barazinbar, the Redhorn, cruel Caradhras".

Later on in the same chapter, when they were wondering if the long arm of Sauron was responsible for the bitter weather they were encountering on the mountain, Gimli provided this rebuttal:
'Caradhras was called the Cruel, and had an ill name,' said Gimli, 'long years ago, when rumour of Sauron had not been heard in these lands.'
Yes but was Caradhas a person? Like atlas i mean?
Yes but was Caradhas a person? Like atlas i mean?

Golly-gee-whiz-fish No! Caradhras was the mountain that turned the Fellowship back with its snowstorm, instead of letting them climb the pass on its shoulder in order to reach the Dimrill Dale from Hollin; thus forcing them to endure the deep, dank, dark, dangerous Mines of Moria. Teacher Smilie
NO. That i know. My point is that why does Gimli personify Caradhras??
Oh, I suppose Dwarves, like Men are so superstitious that they personify creatures and things with human traits. Sometimes it is just for fun, like giving a car a name or talking to plants in order to make them happy and grow, or in Gimli's case, assigning an evil nature to the mountain which has fluke storms occurring on its pass at all times of the year.
Except this particular fluke storm seemed to hit hardest where the fellowship travelled, and (as legolas found out?) was not near so bad elsewhere. Somewhat of the same idea one gets when the mini-fellowship of four hobbits is "herded" by the Old Forest, except that the forest is actually a living thing, whereas mountains, I don't think of in the same category. The mountain turns them back, but it does seem strange about the timing and the intensity and the location of the storm. Coincidence?
Hmmmmm. Gimli was mentioning that Sauron's arm had grown long, and Gandalf too. Maybe he or one of his Nazgul did it from Dol Guldor?
From 'The Ring Goes South' of FotR where they were talking about the heavy snowfall on the mountain:
'I wonder if this is a contrivance of the Enemy,' said Boromir. 'They say in my land that he can govern the storms in the Mountains of Shadow that stand upon the borders of Mordor. He has strange powers and many allies.'

'His arm has grown long indeed,' said Gimli, 'if he can draw snow down from the North to trouble us here three hundred leagues away.'

'His arm has grown long,' said Gandalf.

Here in the book, Gandalf didn't seem to be refuting the notion.

(One of PJ's numerous poetic movie licenses was that he assigned to Saruman the task of calling down the snow.)
I think this was rather a case of the Hand of Fate/Finger of God... or just the King of Arda himself influencing events he perhaps remembered from the vision shown to him by Il’vatar after the Music.

The Fellowship needed to pass through Moria for certain monumental events to take place... certain weenies needed to grow which would not be possible with Gandalf the Grey present holding their hands and telling them what to do... not that they grew much in the end, but still.
Ah, so what you're saying then. is it was just a part of Eru's Contingency Plan C (or D, or whaterver, toward bringing the downfall of Sauron the Evil.
Must you always be having a go at poor Aragorn, Vir?
I just wish the last of Isild’r's line would have been more formidable.

Lord Denethor's words ring truer than Big Ben on St George's Day:
'But I say to thee, Gandalf Mithrandir, I will not be thy tool! I am Steward of the House of An’rion. I will not step down to be the dotard chamberlain of an upstart. Even were his claim proved to me, still he comes but of the line of Isildur. I will not bow to such a one, last of a ragged house long bereft of lordship and dignity.'
Just as well Denethor met his demise in Rath Dinen then; though it might have been better had he met it like Th’oden: on the field of battle; though I suppose seeing that might of further disheartened the troops of Gondor, especially with Faramir indisposed.

But I don't think this thread concering Caradhras is the proper place for that discussion about Denethorn or Aragorn though the latter had traversed the mountain, both on the surface and below it during his long career.
The name Caradrass in Quenya sounds "Carnirasse"- meaning "red peak" or "red horn".

By my reckoning in Peter Jackson's Movie Saruman the White invokes the mountain top with the evocation:

Cuiva а nwalca Carnirasse! Nai yarvaxea rasselya taltuva notto-carinnar! (LoTR, Fellowship of the Ring"). [You can actually hear that when from the top of Ortang Saruman (Christoffer Lee) makes the evocation.]

It is like: "Awaken, You - cruel Red Horn! May your bloodstained horn collapse upon enemy heads!"
I will check later with the book for more information and eventually come back with it.
Caradhras is from Sindarin caran-rass, where nr > thr. The -th- sound here is as in English 'these' and is thus properly spelled with -dh- instead of d.

In general Tolkien did not always print dh where it should be found, but his notes on pronunciation in Return of the King speak to this example specifically. For another example of this, one older derivation of Maedhros hailed from Maenros, but the much later form Maedros represents a different concept.
I looked closer and it turns Galin is right. Carathras means Red Horn in Sindarin. I am not familiar with Sindarin, so I took it for Quenya (which I know a little).
Caradhras was one of the mountain peaks above Moria. One can imagine why the peak does not like the Dwarfs (they seem to call it Khuzdul). In the book the fellowship is stopped by the mountain itself, as in the movie (P.Jacksons LoTR) Saruman makes a storm upon the Fellowship's members.
Saruman could not have power over the elements in such a way as portrayed in the movie. He was shown to have tremendous power, yet in the next movie he was powerless when the Ents were assailing Isengard. Bad writing by Ms Boyens.

Imho it was the Lord of the Winds himself who was pestering the Fellowship, gently coercing them to take the shortcut under the mountains lest they'd stray from the path of Fate.
I always assumed the events on Caradhras were caused by either Sauron himself, because of the hints that Boromir and Gandalf said, or was caused by another evil will of which we no nothing. Similar to the Watcher in the Water, an evil spirit that dwelt in ME that liked to do harm to traverlers and was perhaps drawn to the Fellowship by the Ring. I assumed it was just another Tolkien mystery such as the giants in the Hobbit.
On a different note, I think it clear that the storm was not caused by mere chance of weather, as was mentioned before on this thread. I draw this conclusion from the way the snow had fallen and the words of Aragorn and Boromir saying that there are "Foul voices on the air" in addition to the discussion i referenced earlier.
To repeat what I think I have stated before, Caradhras was called by the Dwarves, 'Barazinbar the Cruel' because of its bad weather: like the storms that could appear out of the blue, almost as if the mountain's evil nature had malicious intentions towards travelers.
I agree that mountain itself could be a traitorous place because of the instant change of weather. And this special mountain is not evil, just not well disposed towards living beings. And for a reason perhaps- all races kind of rip the insides and bring out all they can move from its place.
Anyway... what was presented in the movie in some way changes the expression from the original text. But I think in this particular moment in the movie what Saruman is doing with the evocation is to "awaken the wrath of the mountain top" (it is again the mountain, that stops the Fellowship from passing) rather than "create the storm himself". Aragorn's words: "He is trying to bring down the mountain..." (LoTR-the movie, FoTR) are misleading" as one can see if read the invocation I've posted above.

 Sauron  was the reason why the mountain tried to stop the fellowship. Boromir said that he could create

storms at the Mountains of Shadow so he could create storms and at the Misty Mountains.