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Topic: what really were maiar?

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Tower Guard of Minas Tirith - Rank 4
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Date: Aug 20, 2011
what really were maiar?

I was reading an old book of mine called; Tolkien the illustrated encyclopedia, and it has a natural history section that consists of "a complete dictionary of all the flora and fauna of middle-earth and undying lands" the begining of this chapter starts with a sumary of the species/creatures of arda and it states this fact; "Maiar demons include; balrogs, werewolves, vampires, the kraken, winged beats of the nazgul, wereworms, and the great spiders." Does anyone else feel that this is very inaccurate? In the same section it states the diferent dragon species as seperate from the maiar which I agree is obvious but why would the nazgul's fell beast's be considered that of the maiar? Also I beilieve the kraken is considered to be the watcher in the water outside of moria which I also did not know the origins of. An opinions on this would be great



-- Edited by Huan the great hound on Saturday 20th of August 2011 11:13:13 PM

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But no wizardry nor spell, neither fang nor venom,nor devil's art nor beast-strength, could overthrow Huan of Valinor;
Hobbits of The Shire - Rank 1
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I'm pretty sure the maia are just spirits made by Eru Illuvatar, of lesser power than the Ainur. They can take different forms like so ya I guess I guess it is plausible. Idk about the winged beasts but it doesn't sound so far fetched.

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Tower Guard of Minas Tirith - Rank 4
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Yes frenchsaber the maia are lesser ainur created by Eru. But that's not to say all strange or powerful creatures are to be considered maia

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But no wizardry nor spell, neither fang nor venom,nor devil's art nor beast-strength, could overthrow Huan of Valinor;
Hobbits of The Shire - Rank 1
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Of course not. Not all strange and powerful creatures are maia, but all maia are strange and powerful creatures. Who was you your book made by? Just curious

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Tower Guard of Minas Tirith - Rank 4
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His name was David Day. I don't know of any other writings by him.

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But no wizardry nor spell, neither fang nor venom,nor devil's art nor beast-strength, could overthrow Huan of Valinor;
Tower Guard of Minas Tirith - Rank 4
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He also stated that melkor was as tall as a tower so I don't think he's to be taken very seriously in my humble opinion.

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But no wizardry nor spell, neither fang nor venom,nor devil's art nor beast-strength, could overthrow Huan of Valinor;
Hobbits of The Shire - Rank 1
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Melkor being as tall as a tower does ring a bell but ya I don't know anything about him.

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Tower Guard of Minas Tirith - Rank 4
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I think its metephorical to say he "felt" as tho he was as tall a tower. But when he fought fingolifin and steped on his neck. That couldn't have happend if he (melkor) were as tall as a tower. If that were the case he couldn't have steped on his neck as much as just all of him.

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But no wizardry nor spell, neither fang nor venom,nor devil's art nor beast-strength, could overthrow Huan of Valinor;
Hobbits of The Shire - Rank 1
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"But when they desire to clothe themselves the Valar take upon them forms some as of male and some as of Female; for the difference of temper they had even from their beginning, and it is but bodied forth in the choice of each... But the shapes wherein the Great Ones array themselves are not at all times like to the shapes of the Kings and queens of the Children of Iluvatar; for at times they may clothe themselves in their own thought, made visible in forms of majesty and dread."

The valar could take on different forms according to their mood and their choosing

It goes on to say in the next paragraph:

"Then Melkor saw what was done, and that the Valar walked on Earth as powers visible, clad in the raiment of the World, and were lovely and glorious to see, and blissful... His envy grew then the greater within him; and he also took visible form, but because fo his mood and the malice that burned in him that form was dark and terrible. And he descended upon Arda in power and majesty greater than any other of the Valar, as a mountain that wades in the sea and has its head above the clouds and is clad in ice and crowned with smoke and fire; and the light of the eyes of Melkor was like a flame that withers with heat and pierces with a deadly cold dread.

I think Tolkien meant that Melkor literally appeared in the form of a mountain when at first he appeared in Arda. If not literally a mountain, then his appearance was large and great LIKE a mountain.

[From the end of Ainulindalë, The Silmarillion]

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"The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can't read them." Mark Twain

Tower Guard of Minas Tirith - Rank 4
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Maybe when he first appeared in arde was he that great and massive, but where he that size for the whole first age it would not have been any real challenge for him to defeat fingolfin outside of angbad. The silmarillion says
"that was the last time in those wars that he paseed the doors of his stronghold, and it is said that he took not the challenge willingly, for though his might was greatest of all things in this world, alone of the valar he knew fear."
Why would he fear fingolfn if he were as tall as a tower or mountain?

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But no wizardry nor spell, neither fang nor venom,nor devil's art nor beast-strength, could overthrow Huan of Valinor;
Hobbits of The Shire - Rank 1
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He didn't stay the same size, at one point it said he fled Valinor in the shape of a storm cloud also. Idk why he feared Fingolfin though, I haven't gotten to that point yet. Obviously the Valar are more powerful than the Quendi, so it must be for some other reason than power or might

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"The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can't read them." Mark Twain

Tower Guard of Minas Tirith - Rank 4
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he (Fingolfin) inflicted seven great wounds to morgoth. And the silmarillion says that the orcs did not boast when the battle was over. Obviously it wasn't an easy battle for morgoth, as great and powerful as he was.

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But no wizardry nor spell, neither fang nor venom,nor devil's art nor beast-strength, could overthrow Huan of Valinor;
Samwise Gamgee - rank 9
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By the time Morgoth had his battle with Fingolfin he was as cowardly as they come. The thought of battling a mighty elf lord, despite the massive power difference, in front of all his chief captains was probably daunting. Not forgetting that these 'fate moments' that occur occasionally throughout the lore (Sam and his battle with Shelob for example) Morgoth might have been aware of. He knew that his battle with Fingolfin would be one of these pre-ordained 'epic moments' and thus wouldn't be a walk-over.

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Tower Guard of Minas Tirith - Rank 4
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Well said MoS. Do you have any more wise words for the question of who was and was not maia in the question that started this thread?

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But no wizardry nor spell, neither fang nor venom,nor devil's art nor beast-strength, could overthrow Huan of Valinor;
Hobbits of The Shire - Rank 1
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mouth of sauron wrote:
Not forgetting that these 'fate moments' that occur occasionally throughout the lore (Sam and his battle with Shelob for example) Morgoth might have been aware of.

Hmmm a good way to think about it, thanks



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"The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can't read them." Mark Twain

Samwise Gamgee - rank 9
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Huan the great hound wrote:
Well said MoS. Do you have any more wise words for the question of who was and was not maia in the question that started this thread?

It is certainly simplistic.

Balrogs were of course Maiar.

As for werewolves - they are either spirits that have been placed inside the body of monstrous wolves, or they've taken the shape of monstrous wolves. If it's the former then they could be Maiar, or elvish spirits under the sway of Morgoth. If it is the latter then it seems they must be Maiar.

As for Vampires - I'm not sure these actually exist. I know Sauron took the shape of a vampire in The Silmarillion. Not sure if there are any others. If so, similar explanation as werewolves.

The winged beasts of the Nazgul were most certainly not Maiar. Simply odd beasts that Sauron had taken and fed until they grew larger than anything that flew.

As for the giant spiders - not Maiar. If we are to take the later viewpoint Tolkien had that Maiar cannot reproduce - at least not only with themselves - then the spiders of Mirkwood are some foul brood that has passed down through the ages from Ungoliant - who was most likely one of the Ainur, or an enigma like Tom Bombadil. If of the Ainur then Ungoliant must have bred with lesser spiders of Middle-earth to create the hideous monsters in Mirkwood.

Wereworms are generally considered not to have existed. They seem likely to be part of hobbit-myth.

If by Kraken you mean the Watcher - I'd wager an enigma like Bombadil. Remote possibility of being a Maiar but doubtful I think.



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Tom Bombadil
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From what I understand no. Maiar where the servants of the Valar. Only a few well-known ones were mentioned. I don't think that they became were beasts of any kind. I know that the balrogs, were originally maiar but I think that werewolves, vampires,( the kraken, which is NOT part of Middle-earth, but GREEK mythology) winged beats of the nazgul, wereworms, and the great spiders were maiar at one time. Olórin, Radagast the Brown, Curunír, and Melian were all maiar. The flying rides of the Nazgûl were probably crossbred, as were the urukhai but I don't think that whoever wrote that section got his or her facts straight.

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Hey dol! merry dol! ring a dong dillo!
Ring a dong! hop along! fal lal the willow!
Tom Bom, Jolly Tom, Tom Bombadillo!

Tower Guard of Minas Tirith - Rank 4
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This is the conclusion that I had made. I just hoped it to be confirmed by those wiser in these matters then I. Thank you both for doing so :)

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But no wizardry nor spell, neither fang nor venom,nor devil's art nor beast-strength, could overthrow Huan of Valinor;
Tom Bombadil
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You are welcome. Although I don't think I am that wise. You seem to have a good head on your shoulders.

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Hey dol! merry dol! ring a dong dillo!
Ring a dong! hop along! fal lal the willow!
Tom Bom, Jolly Tom, Tom Bombadillo!

Tower Guard of Minas Tirith - Rank 4
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Only wise enough to admit when I don't know what id like to and take the words of those who have already proven themselves wise my lady :)

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But no wizardry nor spell, neither fang nor venom,nor devil's art nor beast-strength, could overthrow Huan of Valinor;
Guard of Armenelos - Rank 4
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There are many creatures in Middle Earth and throughout her histories, If one adheres to the song of Illuvatar, one will gather that whimsy was a tone set therein by The One. It all comes down to when Illuvatar explains Melkor's discordance. It was still of Eru's doing (and/or, design) so nothing that Melkor could devise was not of Eru. That probably pissed Melkor off pretty good I imagine. It was probably the spark that started the perversion of creation.

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