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Topic: Beren Looked in Melian's eyes...

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Rohan peasant - Rank 2
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Date: Apr 26, 2010
Beren Looked in Melian's eyes...

I read this quote in the "The War of the Jewels".

Do you think Beren was frightened of Melian?

A second quote that shocked me was that Melian was angry with Luthien for taking on human form. Why?

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Anarion, Son of Elendil - rank 8
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I can't seem to find that quote you are refering to Ves.

I never got the impression from the Silmarillion that Beren was frightened of Melian. Perhaps Thingol, but not Melian. Maybe older versions of the tale portray Beren and Melian in a different light.


If you could tell me where to find that second quote as well that would be great!

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Rohan peasant - Rank 2
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Date: Apr 27, 2010
"The War of the Jewels"

Page 65

S190  But Beren looked in the eyes of Melian, who spake not, and he took upon himself the Quest of the Silmaril, and went forth from Menegroth alone."



Now, I wonder if Beren was frightened of Melian or just wanted to impress her to win Luthien's hand?


-- Edited by vestalmiss on Tuesday 27th of April 2010 02:57:00 PM

-- Edited by vestalmiss on Tuesday 27th of April 2010 03:00:49 PM

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Thorin Oakenshield - Rank 6
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Here is the full passage:

'If thou fearest neither spell, wall nor weapons, as thou saist, then go fetch me a Silmaril from the crown of Morgoth. Then we will give jewel for jewel, but thou shalt win the fairer: Luthien of the First-born and of the Gods.' And those who heard knew that he would save his oath, and yet send Beren to his death.
But Beren looked in the eyes of Melian, who spake not, and he took upon himself the Quest of the Silmaril, and went forth from Menegroth alone."


I don't think it was fear that Beren was experiencing, but rather parhaps foresight transmitted through Melian. Perhaps he looked into her eyes and could see that this task was one he was meant to take on?

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Rohan peasant - Rank 2
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Wow Bilbo Baggins,
Great answer. I had never thought about Beren seeing his appointed task in Melian's eyes. 

To me the entire quote is so ominous. I would have been too frightened to stand up to Melian.






-- Edited by vestalmiss on Thursday 29th of April 2010 11:07:19 PM

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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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'A second quote that shocked me was that Melian was angry with Luthien for taking on human form. Why?'

Could you refresh my memory concerning this quote?

I don't remember this... at the moment anyway smile


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Elves of the Third Age - Rank 1
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Neither can I! But as far as I think, Melian was very angry, for she knew that once Luthien Tinuviel takes mortal form, her fea shall thither where she could never, ere the Dagor Dagorath

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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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I don't think Melian was mad at Luthien or Beren but she was really mad at her butt-head husband Thingol because of his manipulative and sinister challenge about Beren and the Silmarils.
He is a true villian because he should have known better...after all his love and seduction of Melian broke the rules too.


-- Edited by Bear on Tuesday 4th of May 2010 11:55:19 PM

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Samwise Gamgee - rank 9
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What should Thingol have done Bear? A wandering bedraggled mere mortal enters the hall of the King of Doriath (where men had not even been allowed to tread) and self-styled King of Beleriand, asking for the hand of a High-Elf / Maiar being, most fairest in all Middle-earth? I am not sure it would have gone down too well with Thingol's credibility among the Elves if he had shouted "She's all yours, sonny! Crack open the champers - party time!"

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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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mouth of sauron,
Your response brought a huge grin to my face and filled my house with laughter.
As the father of a beautiful daughter I have at times empathized with Thingol.
And you are right,  I have never shouted "She's all yours, sonny! Crack open the champers - party time!" (by the way...what are "champers"?)
In fact Meredith brings them by to see if they can stand up to her Papa Bear's scrutiny.
Some do. Some don't. But courage, honesty, true commitment, and mental acuity will show out.  Meredith should hang with the best...and she expects that those she brings home will not be intimidated or reduced to adolescent bumbling.
Like I said; "Some do. Some don't."
I give my opinion if asked but Meredith is an adult making her own choices and I respect her right to make those choices so for the most part I keep my mouth shut.
But one of the things I don't do is manipulate these young men into accepting a challenge that will lead them to a horrible death.
So despite a fatherly empathy...Thingol is still a butt-head. And  in my humble opinion moves from benevolent and supportive to malevolent and manipulative...he doesn't deserve Melian or Luthien.
His actions doom his family, his people, and his kingdom.
Nope...he is a butt head...his shoe fits and he should wear it.
Luthien saw the greatness of Beren...Melian saw Luthien's love for Beren...
Thingol held to his arrogance and prejudice which led to tragedy and injustice.


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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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A little more context if folks are going to judge mighty Greycloak...


A) None save Finrod took counsel with Thingol in the matter of the coming of Men and their dealings with the Noldor. This displeased Thingol.

B) Thingol was also troubled with dreams concerning the coming of Men, before even the first tidings of them were heard, arguably setting up his reaction to one of them entering Doriath and desiring his very daughter!

C) Elwe proclaimed that into Doriath therefore, no Man should come, commanding that Men should take no lands but in Hithlum and Dorthonion.

D) At the request of Finrod, Elwe yet granted land in Brethil to Haleth's people.

In the Grey Annals Elwe is still (as in QS) wroth at discovering the news about Beren. Beren had broken his command and also had intentions with his own daughter (as we know). Beren shows him the Ring of Finrod, but Thingol speaks in anger still. Beren, stung by this scorn, swears that no power shall keep him from his love.

This, and I think understandably (however noble a cause from Beren's perspective), makes Thingol all the more angry, and: 'But, as Doom would, a thought came into his heart, and he answered in mockery'-- and thus his response to Beren and the Quest of the Silmaril.


Thingol later softens toward Beren, and of course ultimately Greycloak set young Túrin on his knee, a sign that he was to be fostered (and those that saw this marveled): '... and in all your life you shall be held as my son, Man though you be.'





-- Edited by Galin on Tuesday 11th of May 2010 05:58:40 PM

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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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Guilt works wonders...
Thingol ...must make amends...
Is there such a thing as noble homocidal manipulation?
What is he? Another arrogant bigot?


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Anarion, Son of Elendil - rank 8
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I think you judge Thingol a bit harshly, Bear. I hadn't considered some of the reasons Galin mentioned.

I think your point about Thingol's clear intent to get Beren killed would hold more weight if he actually killed him in cold blood. If Beren had been dragged off and slain because of his actions, I would agree with you that Thingol was not fit to be a king or a father and husband. But by challenging Beren to do an almost impossible task I would think he would assume that Beren would decline, showing his cowardice to the whole court, and just leave in shame. The impression I got was that Thingol didn't really expect him to attempt the challenge, or if he did he would most certainly die in the attempt.

Ok, I am rambling now. Point is, he gave Beren a choice, he didn't force him to do anything. I think the most he can be accused of is pricing Luthien far too high.

(Just noticed your other post to MoS - champers is slang for champagne.)

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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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Shame is better than death?
Abandoning the one you love because of a fearful task?
These are choices?
Not for me.

As for Thingol...he knew better...being a father or a King...wedded to a goddess or an angel... this demands a higher standard...

All right.  Mercy for a manipulative evil...give Thingol the benefit of the doubt...after all he is an Elven king...but remember the end of Saruman...


"To the dismay of those that stood by, about the body of Saruman a grey mist gathered, and rising slowly to a great height like smoke from a fire, as a pale shrouded figure it loomed over the Hill. For a moment it wavered, looking to the West; but out of the West came a cold wind, and it bent away, and with a sigh dissolved into nothing." (The Lord Of The Rings, The Return of the King, Book Six, Chapter VIII  -  "The Scouring of the Shire", pg. 1020)

That is the price for turning to evil.

Thingol got away with murder...



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Thorin Oakenshield - Rank 6
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I am not convinced you can compare Thingol with his (rather ridiculous) challenge to Beren with a mass-murdering, Orc/man breeding, power hungry corrupt maniac who wanted dominion over Middle-earth.biggrin.gif

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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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I think you are right...
I'm too rigid about Thingol.
Galin was right to point out to me Thingol's amends through Turin.
And comparing him to Saruman was a low blow...
Glorfindel points out I am too harsh.

Ok!  I concede!  But don't invite Thingol to my surprise party!


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Anarion, Son of Elendil - rank 8
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On a slightly different note, what is your opinion of Feanor and Maeglin, Bear?

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Hobbit from Hobbiton - Rank 4
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Hola

I'm with the Bear on this.

Nasty silly Thingol. Would any man, elf or Troll win the prize if they carried the shiny rock ?

Can't put a price on love.

Elrond nearly pulls the same moves on Aragorn. Well he did give him un upbringing and help along the way.

Which one of us wouldn't get a Sil...if it meant being with the one you love?

Is that all ?

Too easy

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Soldier of Beleriand - Rank 3
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I never liked Thingol very much from the start. His attitude was for the most part of the First Age of the Sun really awkward. He was very patronizing with the returned Noldor - I agree he was angry with them for having slain his kin at Alqualonde, but he was hardly in a position of force! He was facing a far greater and more powerful enemy at the time. If not for the valour of the Noldor, how long could his kingdom have stood against Melkor?

Then his attitude and behaviour with Beren just reeks of stupidity because of his never ending pride. He was betrothed to a Maia, a being of far greater mental power than he could ever hope to be. It is made plain that Melian had foresight in the matter, but instead of taking her aside to consult her, he proudly makes judgments in front of the whole court.

Even later in life, his arguments with the Dwarves over the Nauglamir and his slaying are just not at all worthy of the one proclaimed 'King of Beleriand'. Although if I remember correctly Christopher Tolkien suggested that had his father reached that far with the revision of the Silmarillion, that account of Thingol's death might have been altered.

(What I said above is out of the top of my head, without consulting the works, so if I said anything wrong do correct me.)

However I understand Thingol to be a narrative device, instrumental in the furthering of the story. If he had always listened to Melian, he would not have made such blatant mistakes and probably things would never have gotten to such dramatic levels in 'The Silmarillion'. That 'fate' which Tolkien speaks about is in fact where he wants his characters to go, so in this way we can acknowledge Thingol's behaviour as something necessary if we are to read lofty stories such as the one of Beren and Luthien.

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Being lies with Eru - Rank 1
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I also found the fate and events surrounding Thingol alarming.

The idea that came across to me was that this curse that the Noldor had brought with them was like some living creature with a will of its own - like some kind of virus.  Anyone that got involved with the doings of the Noldor in even small ways got infected with it.  To me it seemed that watching the events unfold surrounding Thingol's kingdom falling felt like watching a terminal illness run its course and have its way with an otherwise healthy person.

I wonder if there was any way for him to have avoided involvement, though.  He wasn't a stranger to the returning Noldor so it might have been hard to give a total cold shoulder.  It sure would have helped to NOT deal with the silmarils at all whatsoever ... if he was even trying to avoid it.  I wonder if that even would have stopped the transmition of the curse anway if he had tried it, though.

I wonder if Melian was even permitted to openly interfere in those matters which related to the doom/curse of the Noldor.  If not then that could explain her silence.

When you think about it ... pinned between curse and doom from the Valar - and the might of Melkor ... how did anything ever survive?  Maybe somehow the love between Beren and Luthien helped the world survive in some strange way that is not clearly seen ... maybe Melian had a hand in that somehow.  There is talk of the meeting of Beren and Luthien having an enchanted feeling to it.  This is all total speciulation ...

I don't feel like I have found a clear answer to this question ...
Although it is a rather haunting one.

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Being lies with Eru - Rank 1
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Somehow I too think Thingol behaves like a butt-head when he sends Beren on this quest. Did those who pointed out that Thingol himself was married way above his kind, to a Maia, imply that he was applying double standards? In other words, nobody demanded anything of him for marrying Melian; but when someone else, Beren in this case, just a mortal human, also wanted to marry "beyond his rank", that was a cause of anger? Is that what you mean? For comparison, Turgon was not making a big thing out of his daughter's marriage to Tuor - he could not have known that Tuor was to become immortal in the end. On a different note, the Silmaril did not burn Thingol's hand. Why didn't it? It didn't even burn the dwarves... At least nothing is said about this.

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