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Topic: A call to all Tolkien investigators

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Guard of Armenelos - Rank 4
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Date: Dec 19, 2011
A call to all Tolkien investigators

 As we all know; Tolkien is the master of giving us all much detail in the most vague fashion and for the most part we are set up to answer our own questions when it comes to the origins of certain artifacts and people.  These are challenging aspects to consider for even the shrewdest Tolkien fan and I think that with the participation of the knowledgable members of this site we may put to rest some of the questions that have been haunting me for quite some time.  Even the most novice Tolkien fan may be able to shed light on areas where the more prolific Tolkien fans may have casually passed over, so here is my first question:

 

Where and by whom was the sword Sting created?  What is its history?

We know that it was created by the Westernesse but was any other hint eluded to in any other tales from Tolkien? 



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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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Date: Dec 19, 2011

Hmm, well Sting was an Elven-knife from Gondolin, but its maker is never named, that I recall.

 

If we may speculate that the folk of the Hammer of Wrath were to 'survive' into the revised (but abandoned too early) Fall of Gondolin, then perhaps one of these Elves actually forged Sting? Pure specualtion as I say, but in the very old version, in any case: of the folk of the Hammer of Wrath 'came many of the best smiths and craftsmen, and all that kindred reverenced Aule the Smith...'

 

 

Of course it need not be so even if this survived; and I myself am wary of such a mixing -- that is, externally Hobbits didn't even exist yet in Tolkien's imagination when he wrote the early Fall of Gondolin, never mind that Bilbo existed to receive an Elvish blade.

 

And I'm not sure (another detail I recall at the moment) that 'made for the Goblin-wars' helps much with respect to timing.



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Guard of Armenelos - Rank 4
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Date: Dec 20, 2011

Maegnas aen estar nin- dagnir in yngyl im The sharp point I am called- the slayer of spiders I am.  This is Sindarin written in tengwar letters according to "Sword Inscriptions" a sight I found on the net.  The site master of "Sword Inscriptions" states that he believes that the writing was written later in honor of Bilbo while he stayed in Rivendell before presenting it to Frodo.  It is written in the mode of Beleriand.

 

I hope someone can pull up any more info they might have. Another reference perhaps?  Until then I have other interesting questions on many other matters.  We'll try to exhaust this lead first however...



-- Edited by Jaidoprism7 on Tuesday 20th of December 2011 04:51:31 PM

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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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Date: Dec 20, 2011

That Neo-sindarin inscription is from the films however...

... and possibly picked up by other web sites that then forget to note it's from the films.

smile

 



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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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Date: Dec 21, 2011

Jaidoprism7 and Galin you are both treasures beyond measure. I had thought this a pure mystery.
It opens a whole series of questions about the skills and works of the House of Elrond (like the reforging of Narsil)  Where were they traded? Did the elvish inscriptions add power or special characteristics?  And what about Elrond's ring? Did that become part of all the weapons forged?
I'd like more on your sources so I can check them out.
Again, great job  Jaidoprism7 and Galin.



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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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Date: Dec 21, 2011

'I'd like more on your sources so I can check them out.'

 

My source is The Hobbit Bear -- if I recall correctly when Bilbo is in the orc-mines the dagger is noted as an Elvish blade of Gondolin, as were Glamdring and Orcrist, noted by Elrond.

 

For the highly speculative Hammer of Wrath we have The Fall of Gondolin, The Book of Lost Tales version, more specifically in the descriptions of the houses and folk of Gondolin.

 



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Guard of Armenelos - Rank 4
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Date: Dec 21, 2011
Beyond the Hammer of Wrath characters from Gondolin we have the possible travels of the artifact in question. Another source I found states that Scatha the Great Worm was at the fall of Gondolin and it was that dragon in particular that took the hoarded treasures along with weapons away from Gondolin; that explains their survival. Now Scatha was in turn killed by Fram if I'm not mistaken. I'm in the process of reading into this info. The real gap in time is between Scatha's demise and the trolls of 'The Hobbit' who could have robbed any unsuspecting traveler in the time of the Third Age. I was under the assumption that they couldn't travel very far or weren't prone to? Not sure...

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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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Date: Dec 21, 2011

Hmm, I know of no Tolkien-written source that states Scatha was at the Fall of Gondolin, but if there is one I would like to be reminded.

 

If not, I think we have to be careful characterizing what is speculation and what that speculation is based on. I can source the smiths or artisans of the Hammer of Wrath of Gondolin from Tolkien, but that's as far as that goes -- and the speculation is then to wonder if this would have been retained (an external consideration) -- with a second and rather notable 'jump' as to whether or not Tolkien might have connected Sting to any of these people.

 

And actually I've added very little here even in speculation, as we knew Sting hailed from Gondolin, so some smith was likely enough involved! 

 

So if there is nothing in the books confirming Scatha being present at Gondolin, then that notion itself is speculative, and anything based on that is another 'jump' as I call it.

 

The films, fan-fiction, or speculative web sites are not truly sources to my mind (outside of a very general meaning of the word of course), so I think we must confirm Tolkien as the source of a given matter or detail, in order to present or discuss something with better clarity. 



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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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Date: Dec 22, 2011

Galin.

I agree. It is easy to manufacture data and create a source where none really exists ...

Substantiating data directly from Tolkien (or the interpretation and editing of his family) is enough of a quagmire without imaginal sources inventing and clouding with fresh "data".

 

I love "fan-fiction" and celebrate the creativity of others in "inventing" more in the realm of "Fantasy Fiction."

But no one should claim that they are a Tolkien source if they are not.



-- Edited by Bear on Thursday 22nd of December 2011 07:11:27 AM

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Guard of Armenelos - Rank 4
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Date: Dec 22, 2011

I agree that perhaps this thread may be a little premature, when it comes to gathering my own facts to support the investigation. I just recently came into owning Unfinished Tales, Book of Lost Tales, Tolkien Reader, and the Shaping of Middle-Earth and have a lot of reading to do. I may suspend the investigation for some time until I do thorough research then, if you all are willing, I will present them for your review.

This thread indeed treats with speculation, but only to open dialogue about the finding of a thing; in this case Sting. I find it better to utilize the deep knowledge of others (meaning pretty much every member on this site, and  I say that with a very reverent bow) as a collective to sort things out. No one mind can contain every fact, but many (even in speculation) may unhinge or dislodge a morsel of a clue to obtain knowledge somehow. Anyway that's what I believe.

I may start working backward from the Troll caves where the swords were discovered.  Besides I have many other questions about origin or endings that were only hinted at in the Books.  

I will retire to the Libraries of Minas Tirith.  Good Day.........I said Good day! 



-- Edited by Jaidoprism7 on Thursday 22nd of December 2011 02:36:22 AM

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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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Date: Dec 22, 2011

Jaidoprism7,

Premature?  I think it a very interesting thread ...  tracking down those bits of trivia is a very worthwhile thread.  And, as Galin has showed us, by using and catagorizing the authenticity of the sources, that we can do all sorts of investigation on what is speculation and what that speculation is based on.

 

So by all means enjoy your new resources ... but know you have as much to contribute "right now" and " your opinions and speculations" are as valued as many others ... and it is the student who teaches the teacher ... "Maegnas aen estar nin- dagnir in yngyl im The sharp point I am called- the slayer of spiders I am. " ... that you have brought to the surface has triggered new levels for many of us to explore.  And I think we will all be exploring "the Troll Caves" with greater intensity soon!!!



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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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Date: Dec 22, 2011

I did not mean to imply that anyone need read anything (or anything more) before starting or participating in a thread like this (which I think is a nice and interesting thread too)...

 

... all I meant to say is we should try to be clear about what is Tolkien and what is not when we source something, exactly because there is, or might also be, some speculation involved.

 

I agree that that's not always easy due to the 'Wiki-world' or even certain books that have been published about Middle-earth, but that's the nature of things. 

 

smile 



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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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Date: Dec 22, 2011

smilewinksmile



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Guard of Armenelos - Rank 4
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Date: Dec 22, 2011
I thank you both for answering the call. Your words just remind me that I should actually pull up some more tangible leads to present to you. I will continue to put down what I find (if I find it note worthy) and I hope you guys will check in with this every now and again. I hope you continue to be forthcoming and unfiltered. I dig it.



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Guard of Armenelos - Rank 4
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Date: Dec 29, 2011

Here's a minor sleuthing task, and when I say "minor" I mean extremely easy, but I find that this small mystery runs in the same vein as my quest for certain artifacts. Simply put, the query of: the Origins of Sting, can be merely one of the unanswered or unanswerable questions in the world of Tolkien.

Here I bring an easy one:

To whom do the bones at the door in the Paths of the Dead belong? "Does he feel no fear?" muttered the Dwarf. "In any other cave Gimli Gloin's son would have been the first to run to the gleam of gold. But not here! Let it lie!"
Nonetheless he drew near, and saw Aragorn kneeling, while Elladan held aloft both torches. Before him were the bones of a mighty man. He had been clad in mail, and still his harness lay there whole; for the cavern's air was as dry as dust, and his hauberk was gilded. His belt was of gold and garnets, and rich with gold was the helm upon his bony head face downward on the floor. He had fallen near a stony door closed fast: his finger-bones were still clawing at the cracks. A notched and broken sword lay by him, as if he had hewn at the rock in his last despair.

Aragorn did not touch him, but after gazing silently for a while he rose and sighed. "Hither shall the flowers of simbelmyne come never unto world's end," he murmured. "Nine mounds and seven there are now green with grass, and through all the long years he has lain at the door that he could not unlock. Whither does it lead? Why would he pass? None shall ever know!"

"For that is not my errand!" he cried, turning back and speaking to the whispering darkness behind. "Keep your hoards and your secrets hidden in the Accursed Years! Speed only we ask. Let us pass, and then come! I summon you to the Stone of Erech!"  LOTR, Book V, Chapter II The Passing of the Grey Company

There were many clues there within the words of Aragorn but never a name given.

To whom do the bones at the door in the Paths of the Dead belong?



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Guard of Armenelos - Rank 4
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Date: Jan 4, 2012
Okay! As I stated: This is an easy one but to just move on, since it's been six days, here's the answer:

The bones belonged to Baldor son of Brego- The Second King of the Mark of the First Line of Rohan. In 2570 of the Third Age the Golden Hall of Meduseld was completed and at the feast commemorating its completion Baldor vows he would tread "The Paths of the Dead"

Aragorn and the Grey company, including Gimli and Legolas, found his bones at a door to an unknown chamber or corridor within the Paths of the Dead on March 8th, 3019 of the Third Age. Nearly 450 years later.

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