Mark Reads ‘The Fellowship of the Ring’: Book Two, Chapter 7

In the seventh chapter of the second book of The Fellowship of the Ring, I cannot even begin to summarize the amount of mind fucks that have just happened. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read The Lord of the Rings.


I’m just at a loss. Just….what is happening? How is this real? WHAT IS AIR? In just a single chapter, this whole book has changed, and Tolkien introduces a character who is instantly the most fascinating one in the entire novel. JUST WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO WITH ALL OF THIS HELP ME SEND HELP

Firstly, though, I must comment on how easy it is to pick out tropes or narrative devices that this book clearly started, at least in terms of fantasy. I think there’s a lot that Tolkien drew from classical Roman and Greek mythology in this book, but I could probably spend a couple million words talking about that. DON’T PRESS ME. It’s clear, though, that Tolkien set a standard by which others robbed, stole, lovingly referenced to, and toppled in their own ways. And let me just state equivocally that I’m not knocking people for ripping this off: it’s a beautiful thing! I love seeing tropes twisted and modified. I love seeing them used explicitly. I love inversions. I will sometimes spend half a day on TVTropes and it will just fill me with endless joy? YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND HOW MUCH I LOVE THAT SITE.

I can see the Mirror of Erised and the Pensieve in the the Mirror of Galadriel. I can see so much of Star Wars just from this chapter. Obviously, George R.R. Martin is quite familiar with Tolkien, though I’d argue his works are a total subversion of nearly everything I’ve read so far. I can tell that this is the BLUEPRINT for so much to come. This is genuinely exciting to me! It feels like this huge piece of the puzzle (and arguably one I should have read a long time ago) just fell into place.

But that’s not the only appeal of “The Mirror of Galadriel,” and I don’t want it to seem like I’m attached to this solely because of the influence it has had on popular literature and all things geeky. Tolkien’s a fascinating writer, and while I wouldn’t go so far to say that this is the best prose I’ve ever read, I’m just bewildered (in a good way) just how powerful his storytelling his. I feel the same way about J.K. Rowling; while I did like her writing (especially the last four books), I was more impressed by the story she told. Here, I can put aside issues I might have with length and density because the events that occur in chapter seven are so important to me. Of course, I do want to talk about those problems, but they certainly don’t ruin anything here at all.

The setup of the city of Galadhrim led me to expect grandeur. If Cerin Amroth was so ridiculously over-the-top and gorgeous, then the city itself had to be more impressive. I was absolutely blown away by what Tolkien has created here. Obviously, I’ve discussed many of the smaller details regarding world-building that help me feel immersed in the world of Middle-earth, but I’m just gonna be real simple here: THIS SHIT IS SO COOL. Middle-earth has always seemed to be this simple, earthy, and green place, stretching endlessly from one field to a mountain range to a forest, with these tiny villages and towns linking them. And then we get Galadhrim, and it’s this gigantic, overwhelming, and detailed city that’s larger than anything else we’ve come across. By Gandalf’s beard, they have to walk around the city walls to get inside, and it takes FOREVER. Hours! HOURS AND HOURS.

On top of that, this is a society in and of itself, a micro community inside Middle-earth with its own laws, its own customs, and its own citizenship. Most important, though, is the fact that this city has the closest example of royalty that we see anywhere in the book: Celeborn and Galadriel. Well, we don’t meet them right away, since the Company is led up the LONGEST STAIRWAY IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD up to the talan where the house of the two live.

Very tall they were, and the Lady no less tall than the Lord; and they were grave and beautiful. They were clad wholly in white; and the hair of the Lady was of deep gold, and the hair of the Lord Celeborn was of silver long and bright; but no sign of age was upon them, unless it were in the depths of their eyes; for these were keen as lances in the starlight, and yet profound, the wells of deep memory.

oh my god it was hidden right there and I didn’t see it HOLY SHIT. Okay, wait, I’ll get to that in a bit, but let’s just talk about a few other things first, like Lord Celeborn’s greeting to Gimli:

‘But today we have broken our long law. May it be a sign that though the world is now dark better days are at hand, and that friendship shall be renewed between our peoples.’ Gimli bowed low.

THIS IS SO WONDERFUL. Prejudices are being broken, alliances are formed anew, and I just want to hug everyone. How long does this beautiful moment last? A SINGLE GODDAMN PARAGRAPH. Because the first thing Celeborn and Galadriel bring up? The fact that Gandalf is missing. HAWKWARD. It’s not like I’d forgotten it; the sadness over his death is all over the pages of this. But for these Elves, this is downright evil to them, and Celeborn says as much to the Company. However, the dude is quick to judge, blaming the Dwarves for Gandalf’s death. LIKE REALLY, DUDE, SURELY IT’S THE BALROG’S FAULT SINCE THAT ACTUALLY KILLED GANDALF. It’s here that the brilliant and sympathetic Galadriel pretty much schools her Lord and I am kind of instantly in love with her? Look, I don’t understand the dynamic that exists in the society of the Elves, so I don’t want to pretend that I also know the gender dynamics. But there are very few women in this universe at all. No seriously, there’s Arwen, Camilla, and now Galadriel. How the hell is this even possible? How do any of these species procreate? Shouldn’t there be women around by default? Given this gross oversight, the fact that Galadriel is the one to refute her Lord’s statement and welcome Gimli with open arms….oh, I like you. I like you a lot, Galadriel.

I mean, come on!

She looked upon Gimli, who sat glowering and sad, and she smiled. And the Dwarf, hearing the names given in his own ancient tongue, looked up and met her eyes; and it seemed to him that he looked suddenly into the heart of an enemy and saw there love and understanding. Wonder came into his face, and then he smiled in answer.

HOW CAN YOU NOT LOVE THIS. Oh my god, be my friend, Galadriel.

Immediately after this, Galadriel becomes more and more fascinating, and I don’t think I’ve ever experienced a character getting so much development and depth in such a rapid period of time. She goes from being this empathetic, touching Lady to talking with great authority about Gandalf and the White Council. Yet even despite this (and this is a constant theme in this chapter), she refuses to give counsel. It’s actually something in Middle-earth I’ve noticed from various people. If we think back to the Council of Elrond, Boromir specifically traveled solely for counsel. Like, seriously, he traveled over a hundred days just to get some dude’s opinion. Here, Galadriel outright refuses to give the Company any advice at all.

Instead, she stares into their souls.

I actually had to read this three times to understand it because the following scene addresses it so much. As it’s described in the book, she gazes at each person (separately, I think?) and it’s as if she’s reading their minds, so much so that Sam himself feels embarrassed after it happens. Sam says:

‘If you want to know, I felt as if I hadn’t got nothing on, and I didn’t like it. She seemed to be looking inside me and asking me what I would do if she gave me the chance of flying back home to the Shire to a nice little hole with – with a bit of garden of my own.’

In fact, nearly every character describes the same sensation. Galadriel spoke gravely about the mission to destroy the Ring, then seemingly looked into each person to read their true thoughts and intentions. Would they choose the perilous road ahead, or the thing they most wanted in life? THIS IS SO STRANGE WHAT IS HAPPENING. There was one thing that Aragorn said, though, that made me double-take the text:

‘There is in her and in this land no evil, unless a man bring it hither himself.’

That seemed to be a strange thing to say. I get that Aragorn is quite fond of this place, but there’s no evil in the entirety of Galadhril? None at all? No one can be evil? Surely there’s one evil elf around, right? Just like there could possibly be one good orc, right?

The Company spends days in Lothlórien recuperating and resting. Even given the slightly disturbing events of that first day, it’s rather nice, I must admit. But Tolkien does not ignore the black cloud that hangs over this book: Gandalf is dead. I find it very realistic that the group takes so long to properly grieve. Given that they escaped from the horror of the orcs and the Balrog and had to immediately get as far away from Moria as possible, they never really could stop to properly mourn the loss of that great wizard. (I still can’t believe this happened in the first “book,” y’all. WHAT IS COMING AFTER THIS IF THAT HAPPENS SO EARLY.)

I wasn’t surprised that the characters mourn through song, but there was something incredibly heartbreaking about the song that Frodo makes up on the spot about his mentor and friend. Every word of that poem felt meticulously crafted, but he was just letting his heart guide him to talk about the “old man in a battered hat.” Is it weird that I already miss his sassy wizardry? Damn it. 🙁

Sam and Frodo find themselves discussing Gandalf, magic, and the Elves a few nights later. It’s also got this weird tinge of sadness to it. In this case, Sam expresses something I’d not thought of because I was so enamored with this city: things seem too perfect around. He states this by commenting that he thinks that there’s some magic at work there to keep things this way. Well, he is excited about the idea, expressing a desire to see Elf-magic himself, but he brought up a good point. I was distracted by the spectacle of it all, and aside from the “evil” comment, I’d never engaged the idea of magic there at all.

Lady Galadriel comes upon them as they are having this conversation, and this is when everything just becomes so confusing, then amazing, then my  brain breaks a thousand times in a row. The Mirror of Galadriel. First of all, SHE HAS A PROPHETIC MIRROR NAMED AFTER HER. That is kind of amazing just as a fact on its own! Also, I don’t think it’s technically prophetic necessarily, as it can show desires (SEEEEEEEE IT’S THE MIRROR OF ERISED DO YOU SEE), “things unbidden,” weird shit, and things one might not want to see, true or not. Actually, the more I think about it, it can show virtually anything in any context, which means it has no real guidelines or rubric, and that’s kind of distracting. I mean, you could never really know what you’re going to get when you look! It could be a nightmare that will never come true no matter what decisions you make in life, or it could be a fixed point in time in the future that is unchangeable. Or it could show you what Galadriel wants for lunch tomorrow. LOOK I DON’T KNOW WHAT THE GUIDELINES ARE.

Anyway, Sam gives the Mirror a good ol’ look because…I don’t know? She doesn’t really sell this idea to me and I most certainly wouldn’t look if she told me this:

‘For it shows things that were, and things that are, and things that yet may be. But which it is that he sees, even the wisest cannot always tell. Do you wish to look?’

UM HELL NO. You can keep your demonic nightmare tool away from me! It definitely doesn’t help that Sam sees so many images that make no sense to me. They could come true and I should probably make note of what they are, as I bet Tolkien will totally fulfill every image we’ve seen. The main thing that Sam takes away from his glimpse in the Mirror is that “evil” things are happening in the Shire, so much so that he immediately states that he needs to leave back home. Was this a test orchestrated by Galadriel? Ultimately, Sam decides to stick with Frodo, so it makes me think she did this on purpose.

More on that in a second, because y’all, we need to talk about Frodo’s vision. We need to talk about it right this fucking second because this is just…..just, seriously, send help. There’s a lot he sees that just blows me away (Sauron? The Sea? A SHIP WITH BLACK SAILS? The smoke????), but we all need to discuss this now and forever:

In the black abyss there appeared a single Eye that slowly grew, until it filled nearly all the Mirror. So terrible was it that Frodo stood rooted, unable to cry out or to withdraw his gaze. The Eye was rimmed with fire, but was itself glazed, yellow as a cat’s, watchful and intent, and the black slit of its pupil opened on a pit, a window into nothing.


Then the Eye began to rove, searching this way and that; and Frodo knew with certainty and horror that among the many things that it sought he himself was one. But he also knew that it could not see him – not yet, not unless he willed it. The Ring that hung upon its chain about his neck grew heavy, heavier than a great stone, and his head was dragged downwards. The Mirror seemed to be growing hot and curls of steam were rising from the water. He was slipping forward.

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHAT HAVE I JUST READ? WHAT HAVE I GOTTEN MYSELF INTO???? Oh, this book just catapulted itself to awesome in just two paragraphs. WHAT IS THIS DISEMBODIED EYE? WHAT THE FUCK DOES IT HAVE TO DO WITH THE RING?


Its rays glanced upon a ring about her finger; it glittered like polished gold overlaid with silver light, and a white stone in it twinkled as if the Even-star had come down to rest upon her hand. Frodo gazed at the ring with awe; for suddenly it seemed to him that he understood.


‘Yes,’ she said, divining his thought, ‘it is not permitted to speak of it, and Elrond could not do so. But it cannot be hidden from the Ring-bearer, and one who has seen the Eye. Verily it is in the land of Lórien upon the finger of Galadriel that one of the Three remains. This is Nenya, the Ring of Adamant, and I am its keeper.’

I CAN’T. I CAN’T. I CAN’T BELIEVE THIS IS HAPPENING. THIS SIMULTANEOUS EXPLAINS SO MUCH AND YET ABSOLUTELY NOTHING AT ALL. My brain cannot deal with how real shit is getting AND THIS IS STILL THE FIRST BOOK. How does she have one of the Three Rings???

‘Do you not see now wherefore your coming is to us at the footstep of Doom? For if you fail, then we are laid bare to the Enemy. Yet if you succeed, then our power is diminished, and Lothlórien will fade, and the tides of Time will sweep it away. We must depart into the West, or dwindle to a rustic folk of dell and cave, slowly to forget and to be forgotten.’


Do you realize how this changes Frodo’s entire journey? Wait, why am I asking this like none of you have read this? OF COURSE YOU KNOW THIS. But….I just don’t know how to cope with this MONSTER of a reveal. I know it complicates the character of Galadriel immensely, casting this new context over everything she’s said and done. If she has one of the Three, then she really could look into the hearts of the Company as they thought! OH MY GOD WHAT THE.

Well, first of all, I love that Frodo is all LOL SO YOU WANT THE RING YOU CAN HAVE IT. Well-played, Frodo, but I think Galadriel’s already in deep as it is. She ponders owning the Ring and the power it brings, desiring to do good with it instead of evil, but deep down, she knows that’s not possible.

‘I pass the test,’ she said. ‘I will diminish, and go into the West, and remain Galadriel.’

I am already so full of feels for this character? I think she has more character depth than anyone else in the whole series and I just met her. She’s magical, she has powers no one else does, she uses them for good (sort of????), and she possesses this ability to empathize and desire for power at the same time. She’s one giant complicated ball of morals and THIS IS WHAT I WANT FROM MY CHARACTERS, OKAY?

There’s one last detail in chapter seven that needs to be stated. As the two head back, Frodo is curious as to how Galadriel is able to do such amazing feats with the Ring of Adamant, while Frodo is only able to disappear. Galadriel reveals that the Ring itself gives powers based on who possesses it, and he could certainly do what he wished with it if he were more powerful and could control his “will to the domination of others.” But that only leads to evil, since the Ring belongs to the Dark Lord. (It’s here that she outright confirms that the Eye belongs to the Dark Lord, but I’m still interested in the logistics of this, though.”

I mean, I’m pretty sure this is foreshadowing of some sort, and I think we’ll see Frodo put on the Ring at least once more before the end of the novel. We still have a lot of ground to cover, and it’s been quite some time since he’s worn it. God, I am just so excited for the future, though. THIS BOOK. THIS BOOK.

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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322 Responses to Mark Reads ‘The Fellowship of the Ring’: Book Two, Chapter 7

  1. Becky_J_ says:

    I love this chapter. It's only 16 pages long, which for Tolkien, is like a SENTENCE. And yet, though no info dumps occur, it kinda seems like one DOES happen. I feel much more knowledgeable than I did at the beginning of it for some reason. OHMYGOD I AM UNDER THE SPELLS OF THE ELVES.

    A few of my favorite moments:

    1. Legolas and Gimli suddenly being BFFS. (Ok, I don't know if that's actually what's happening, because it's NEVER explained, but look, they could barely handle each other, and now they are hanging out all the time and it is so awesome )

    2. Every time I see the members of the Fellowship being revived, and their energy is renewed and their despair and exhaustion is almost literally washed away, I CANNOT help thinking of the fairies in the caves that you find in Zelda that restore your hearts. And then I WISH THAT BOTH OF THESE THINGS WERE REAL. Gah.

    3. The song that Frodo tries to create to mourn Gandalf…. please excuse me while I go cry forever. While we were taken in by the beauty of Lothlorien, I forgot about that, and then TOLKIEN HITS US STRAIGHT IN THE FACE WITH IT. And then Sam adds his verse about the fireworks…. BLESS YOUR TINY HOBBIT HEART SAMWISE GAMGEE.

    4. "I don't miss Gandalf's fireworks, but his bushy eyebrows , and his quick temper, and his voice."
    I am wary to open up the conversation to loss, especially because I have never lost anyone close to me… but I have said my fair shares of goodbyes, and HATE them. And this sentence struck me so much, because you think that when someone is not in your life anymore, you'll miss the loud, obvious things. But not so much; you miss the little things, the things you didn't know you noticed, the things that make that person invaluable. You miss the smell of them and the annoying things they did and the way that they took up too much room on the couch. The couch feels too big without them, you know? Anyways…. yeah. Bushy eyebrows. I miss them too, Frodo. I miss them too.

    5. IF NOMINATING PEOPLE FOR PRESIDENT DIDN'T ALWAYS END UP IN THEIR DEATH, I WOULD DO IT EVERY DAY FOR SAMWISE GAMGEE. Because, seriously, there are not enough words to describe my love for him and his devotion to Frodo.

    6. Dear Mr. Tolkien…. you are single-handedly supplying the fuel for my nightmares. I have these awful, recurring nightmares about something chasing me, and I am never quick enough…. it searches for me and as long as it doesn't see me I'm okay, but IT ALWAYS SEES ME. Except now, instead of some shapeless THING, the chaser is now a great big, giant EYE. Thank you. Thank you SO MUCH. How did I survive reading these as a child

    7. The thought of Lothlorien fading into nonexistence is seriously the saddest thing ever to me. I am awful with change, and especially the loss of beautiful things, and let's face it…. Lothlorien is the most beautiful thing to never exist. It is AWFUL that if the Ring isn't destroyed, it will destroy everything else, and if it IS, Lothlorien will be no more, and the elves will disappear into the West. WHAT THE FUCK TOLKIEN. WHY. WHY.

    And now for a piece of art, by Stephanie Pui-Mun Law, showing how I picture Lothlorien, and to celebrate its beauty, because I am already mourning its loss:
    <img src=""&gt;

    • monkeybutter says:

      Ditto to #5. And that painting is gorgeous.

    • I strongly object to your calling Sam's heart tiny. I wholeheartedly agree with everything else, though 🙂

      • Becky_J_ says:

        You are so right, that is wrong. I was thinking physical size, since he's a hobbit, but Sam has the biggest heart in Middle Earth! AND I WILL NEVER FORGET AGAIN 🙂

    • Katie says:

      Technically, the painting is spoilery, as it doesn't happen until the next chapter 🙂

      • tigerpetals says:

        It is? Because gurer'f n jbzna fvggvat ba gur rqtr bs gurve obng, naq V qba'g erzrzore gung.

        • Mauve_Avenger says:

          V'z cerggl fher gur jbzna vf fhccbfrq gb ercerfrag Tnynqevry urefrys. Vg'f gur Fjna-fuvc fur'f evqvat jvgu Pryrobea va gur arkg puncgre.

      • Becky_J_ says:

        V unira'g ernq gur arkg puncgre lrg, V jnf whfg frnepuvat sbe n ercerfragngvba bs Ybguybevra gung jnf pybfr gb zl urnq irefvba. Ur jbhyq arire xabj vg jnf n fcbvyre hayrff fbzrbar cbvagf vg bhg, orpnhfr V unira'g ernq naq V jbhyqa'g unir xabja rvgure.

    • tigerpetals says:

      Stephanie Pui-Mun Law <3

      The constant nostalgia of these books can depress me if I get into them too much. I guess the elves are super delicate. They lose their favorite things and then pack up and retire.

      • flootzavut says:

        Jryy V thrff jr'er gnyxvat nobhg n fcrpvrf jub pna qvr sebz n oebxra urneg zber ernqvyl guna sebz qvfrnfr be byq ntr… 🙁

    • notemily says:

      That is gorgeous! I love the way the tree branch frames the sunlight. And the huge lily-pads.

      • Becky_J_ says:

        I know that's what I love too! It is the closest representation to what I think Lothlorien looks like in my head…. it's nice to find one that is so bright, too many artistic representations of it are so DARK! 🙂

    • Erik says:

      Thank you for the Stephanie pic! I love her work – I have a couple of her prints and one original that I won at a con auction.

    • AmandaNekesa says:

      I agree – #1 #5 and #7 so much!

      #1 – I love how the animosity between Dwarves and Elves appears to start fading away in this chapter, and the fact that Legolas and Gimli (and Galadriel) may very well start this reconciliation is just awesome. I just love seeing these cultural and historical barriers falling down through understanding, compassion, and friendship. It feels like a tiny glimmer of hope amongst odds that are very much stacked up against the Fellowship and Middle-earth.

      #5 – SAM!! Need I say much more? <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 I'm forming the opinion that he's now officially my favorite of the hobbits (and character in general). I just love his deep sense of loyalty. Even after being tempted, though at first he says he wants to go home, in the end, he decides that he needs to stay and continue their task with Frodo.

      #7 – What a sad and utterly depressing thought. On the one hand, the events to come will either cause Sauron to gain power and destroy the land of Lothlorien, or else they succeed in their task and the beauty and mystery of Lorien is still lost forever. 🙁

      Beautiful artwork! 🙂

      • notemily says:

        Sam has always been my favoritest Hobbit.

        • AmandaNekesa says:

          I've always had a hard time pinning down one hobbit as my favorite, because I seriously love all of the hobbits. They are all such great characters and in their own unique ways! But this re-read has pointed out so many things about Sam that are so full of awesome and BAMF-iness, and I just love him for that! 🙂

  2. Tauriel_ says:

    Tauriel's Linguistic Corner

    I'm back from Prague! 😀 If anyone is interested, TolkienCon was fantastic, we had a feast and a toast celebrating the 10th anniversary of TolkienCon and Professor Tolkien's 120th birthday. There were lectures on various topics (ranging from tolkienite topics such as the analysis of the life of Númenoreans, through historical topics such as medieval war machines and alchemy, to philosophical debates on heroism and Tolkien's more obscure writings), dancing lessons, singing and playing until early hours of the morning, a teahouse, an Elvish corner, calligraphy lessons (we were discussing how Elves might've wrote music notes), jewellery workshop and shop, fantasy bookshop, and general feeling good and meeting friends and talking. 🙂 Oh, and a theatre performance – a Shakespearean parody called "Bolger and Bracegirdle are dead" about two hobbits who (rot13'd for LOTR spoilers) svtug sbe gur nssrpgvba bs Ebfr Pbggba, jub vf fgvyy jnvgvat sbe Fnz. Vg gnxrf cynpr whfg orsber gur Fpbhevat bs gur Fuver, fb Teízn Jbezgbathr vf nyfb srngherq, naq gur thl jub cynlrq uvz pbhyq tvir Oenq Qbhevs n eha sbe uvf zbarl, orpnhfr ur jnf qryvpvbhfyl rivy naq oevyyvnagyl perrcl. 😀

    So, um, anyway, the Linguistics Corner. Right. :p

    Please note again that the letter "c" is always pronounced as "k" in both Sindarin and Quenya. So "Celeborn" is pronounced as "Keleborn", not "Seleborn".

    Caras Galadhon – "City of the Trees". Sindarin origin: caras – "city", "fortress"; galadh – "tree", galadhon – "of the trees".
    Celeborn – "Silver tree". Sindarin origin: celeb – "silver", orn – "tree". The Quenya version of the name is (don't snigger) "Teleporno".
    Galadriel – "Maiden crowned with a radiant garland" or "Lady of the Light". Sindarinised version of her original Quenya name Altariel: alta – "radiance", riel – "garlanded maiden". Sindarin word galad means "light", "radiance".
    Mithrandir – "Grey Pilgrim". Sindarin origin: mith – "grey", "pale grey"; randir – "wanderer", "pilgrim".
    Nenya – name derived from the Quenya word nén, which means "water". It could be loosely translated as "The Ring of Water".
    elanor – "sun-star". Sindarin origin: el- is a short form of elen – "star" used in compounds; Anor – "Sun".
    mallorn – "golden tree". Species of a tree, supposedly beech-like. Sindarin origin: mall – "gold" (as in colour, not metal); orn – "tree".

    • MidnightLurker says:

      And "dh" is pronounced as "th," I think, though I can't remember if it's soft or sharp. So "Karas Galathon," "the Galathrim."

      • Plactus says:

        "dh" is the voiced "th" sound in "then," as contrasted with the unvoiced "th" sound in "thin." (With the pin-pen merger, the two are a minimal pair.)

        • misterbernie says:

          With the pin-pen merger, the two are a minimal pair.
          Oooh, finally I know at least one /θ/ – /ð/ minimal pair in at least some English varieties. SHINY 😀

          • MindTurnedOff says:

            I think the best /θ/ – /ð/ minimal pairs in English are teeth-teethe and sooth-soothe. But yeah, generally its really hard to find contrast

            • misterbernie says:

              Ooh, MOAR SHINY; gotta admit that neither 'teethe' nor 'sooth' are in my active vocabulary. sheath-sheathe now came to mind, too, at least wiktionary gives them both as /iː/.
              (For English and its pre-voiced consonant vowel lengthening, I just tend to not think about minimal pairs in final position too much because the allophonic lengthening makes it… wonky in my brain* (I have a lot of feelings about phonology) )

              *I can language!

              • Caravelle says:

                Would "this'll" and "thistle" count ?
                (they're not single words, yeah, but I might even be wrong on their pronunciation. Oh well.)

                • Seumas the Red says:

                  Loosely, yeah, I think they form an approximate pair. (I’m trying to be as accent neutral as possible, but my Scottish accent agrees) 😛

    • MidnightLurker says:

      It is impossible not to snigger at Teleporno. Poor guy.

    • monkeybutter says:

      Too late, giggling forever at Teleporno.

    • I want to see that play so damn badly. It sounds completely awesome 🙂 *goes back to taking notes on the linguistics*

    • Jenny_M says:

      I was going to try and make some sort of a Teleporno graphic, but everything I thought of was Just. Too. Much.

    • flootzavut says:

      The Shakespeare parody sounds hilarious.

      And Teleporno… that will never get old!

    • Rheinman says:

      I just thought about a "Waiting for Godot" parody called "Waiting for Gandalf." Existential enuii prevents Frodo from ever leaving the Shire, or doing much of anything.

      • notemily says:

        Pretty sure there's a Godot parody or two on the Epic Lord of the Rings Parody Thread.

        *looks around* Ah, here is one:

        Charming spot. (He turns, advances to front of building, halts facing bar.) Inspiring prospects. (He turns to Frodo.) Let's go.
        We can't.
        Why not?
        We're waiting for Gandalf.
        (despairingly). Ah! (Pause.) You're sure it was here?
        That we were to wait.
        He said in the Prancing Pony. (They look at the tavern.) Do you see any others?
        What is it?
        I don't know. A pub.
        Where is the ale?
        They must be out.
        No more drinking.
        Or perhaps it's not the season.
        Looks to me more like a bar.
        A pub.
        A bar.
        A—. What are you insinuating? That we've come to the wrong place?
        He should be here.
        He didn't say for sure he'd come.

        And if he doesn't come?
        We'll come back tomorrow.
        And then the day after tomorrow.
        And so on.
        The point is—
        Until the Ringwraiths show up.
        You're merciless.
        We came here yesterday.
        Ah no, there you're mistaken.
        What did we do yesterday?
        What did we do yesterday?
        Why . . . (Angrily.) Nothing is certain when you're about.
        In my opinion we were here.
        (looking round). You recognize the place?
        I didn't say that.
        That makes no difference.
        All the same . . . that pub . . . (turning towards Strider’s table) that ranger . . .
        You're sure it was this evening?
        That we were to wait.
        He said Saturday. (Pause.) I think.
        You think.
        I must have made a note of it. (He fumbles in his pockets, taking out the Ring.)
        (very insidious). But what Saturday? And is it Saturday? Is it not rather Sunday? (Pause.) Or Monday? (Pause.) Or Friday?
        (looking wildly about him, as though the date was inscribed in the landscape). It's not possible!
        Or Thursday?
        What'll we do?
        If he came yesterday and we weren't here you may be sure he won't come again today.
        But you say we were here yesterday.
        I may be mistaken. (Pause.) Go sing the long version of “Hey Diddle Diddle” fall under a table, and put your Ring on, do you mind?
        (feebly). All right.

        -an excerpt from "Waiting for Gandalf", by Samuel (Samwise?) Beckett.

        • mee says:

          LOTR film cast spoiler: V fnj "Jnvgvat sbe Tbqbg" va Jryyvatgba, Arj Mrnynaq va 2010. V qvqa'g xabj nalguvat nobhg gur cynl orsberunaq naq jrag cheryl orpnhfr Fve Vna ZpXryyna jnf va vg.

          Ur cynlrq Rfgentba. Nyy gur npgbef jrer tbbq ohg ur jnf rkprcgvbany – ur vaunovgrq gur punenpgre. V rawblrq vg irel zhpu. V qvqa'g guvax bs Tnaqnys sbe bar frpbaq.

          Lbhe cnebql gbbx zr evtug onpx naq znqr zr fzvyr. V guvax Rfgentba unf gur Sebqb yvarf, lrf? Pna'g ernyyl erzrzore.

          • notemily says:

            I didn't write that, it's from the parody thread I linked on top 🙂 but I'm glad you like it. Also, Mark knows about Ian McKellen playing Gandalf, so there's no need to rot-13 that one.

    • tigerpetals says:

      That con sounds so great. Calligraphy, theatre, heroism debates, workshops and fantasy books.

    • arctic_hare says:

      Sorry, but I can't not laugh at "Teleporno". xD Also, consider me deeply jealous, as that con sounds completely wonderful. <3 So glad you had a great time!

    • baruchan says:

      Celeborn is one of my favorite elves in the history of ever, because to be married to someone like Galadriel and not feel inferior or weak or insecure after millenia of being around her shows just how sure he is of himself.

      Then Tolkien had to reveal that his name in Telerin is "Teleporno". DAMN IT.

    • BetB says:

      Tauriel, I just wanted to say how much I appreciate your "Linguistic Corner". It is apparent that you love Etymology. Thanks for the enlightenment.

      Also, Teleporno sounds like a twist on the Spanish television Telenovela. Like others have said, it doesn't get old.

    • Tauriel_ says:

      Thanks, guys. 🙂 Some photos are here and here. 🙂

    • notemily says:


      Is it weird that my brain immediately thought this was a mineral, like Kryptonite?

      TELEPORNO I still love that

      "Grey Pilgrim" reminds me of Odin, which is neat because I think Tolkien took his original "look" for Gandalf from an image of Odin. They both wander around with pointy hats and a staff, certainly.

      Interesting that "galad" means "light" but "galadh" means "tree"? I would have assumed that the name of the city had something to do with Galadriel's name, but apparently not.

      • Tauriel_ says:

        Is it weird that my brain immediately thought this was a mineral, like Kryptonite?

        Yeah, well, do you have an alternative adjective meaning "related to Tolkien"? :p Tolkienish? Tolkienesque?

        • notemily says:

          I'm not decrying your use of the word, just saying that's where my mind went 🙂 Also, they name newly-created elements after people, right? One of them could totally be Tolkienite. Or maybe Tolkienium.

          • Tauriel_ says:

            I know, I was joking, too, hence the smiley. 😉 To be honest, I read that adjective form somewhere years ago, and it kind of stuck with me. I have no idea whether it's correct, but I just got used to using it. 😀

    • stefb4 says:

      My copy has "Galadon" instead of "Galadhon" AND IT IS REALLY ANNOYING.

    • atheistsisters says:

      Wow, sounds like a GREAT time – so jealous! Glad you had fun 🙂

    • Atrus says:

      In the first editions of LotR some of what should have been Galadh was written down as Galad (Galadrim, Galadon) for fear that the archaic 'dh' would alienate readers. Similarly, in both his later scripts and some of the earlier ones, Tolkien writes down Galadriel's name as Galaðriel or Aldariel, aka Tree-lady, and it's only in the later LotR scripts that she becomes Galadriel/Altariel.

      At some point Tolkien tried to reconcile this mess by saying that galad means 'light' in Sindarin but 'tree' in Silvan, so Galadon would be the correct Silvan spelling and Galadhon the Sindarin version. Accordingly, those who associated Galadriel with the Galadhrim would think it to be a Silvan name and call her Galaðriel in Sindarin.

      Yay for linguistic confusion!

    • ladysugarquill says:

      That Con. I want to go 🙁

      The Quenya version of the name is (don't snigger) "Teleporno".

      We were waiting for this in rot13 in the last chapter XD

  3. Tauriel_ says:

    I love this chapter. It's so atmospheric and peaceful, even though there's still a lot of grief for the loss of Gandalf. The description of Caras Galadhon and of Galadriel and Celeborn is simply gorgeous.

    but no sign of age was upon them, unless it were in the depths of their eyes; for these were keen as lances in the starlight, and yet profound, the wells of deep memory

    <img src=""&gt;
    <3 <3 <3

    I love how Galadriel speaks the Dwarvish names of Mirrormere and Silverlode and Moria – it shows not only how knowledgeable she is in other languages, but also knows how to get to Gimli's heart and convince him that she's not his enemy (after all, we're told there's quite a bit of enmity and dislike between the Elves and the Dwarves).

    For the Lord of the Galadhrim is accounted the wisest of the Elves of Middle-earth, and a giver of gifts beyond the power of kings.

    Njj, lbh'er gbb zbqrfg, Tnynqevry – lbhe fgngvba vf nsgre nyy sne nobir lbhe uhfonaqf – naq ur arire yvirq va Inyvabe naq arire fnj gur Yvtug bs gur Gerrf. Naq hayvxr Pryrobea, lbh'er qverpgyl eryngrq gb nyy Ryivfu Xvatf – tenaqqnhtugre bs obgu Xvat Svajë bs gur Abyqbe naq Xvat Byjë bs gur Gryrev, naq tenaqavrpr bs Xvat Vatjë bs gur Inalne. 🙂

    Galadriel is indeed wise and powerful and even though she praises her husband's wisdom, there's a definite feeling that she has the final word on how things are done in Lothlórien.

    I snigger every time when I get to the part where Boromir is all "I don't trust this Elvish Lady, grumble grumble" and Aragorn is like "STFU, I'm going to bed." :p

    Legolas was away much among the Galadhrim, and after the first night he did not sleep with the other companions, though he returned to eat and talk with them. Often he took Gimli with him when he went abroad in the land, and the others wondered at this change.

    I think this is a beginning of a beautiful friendship. <3 😀

    The Mirror of Galadriel is full of MYSTERY and ELF MAGIC and it was obviously an inspiration for Rowling's Pensieve. Except that the Mirror can show things not just from the past, but also from the present and the future (downside is, that you can't always tell what exactly you're seeing, past or present or future…).

    There's also a scary moment where Galadriel is tempted to take the Ring, and we get a glimpse of what she might have become, if she chose to take it. Thankfully, she resists the temptation.

    • Ryan Lohner says:

      And that eye effect was achieved by having a huge rig of eyes behind the camera to reflect in her eyes. Way to go above and beyond.

    • Jenny_M says:

      Jura V svefg fnj gur zbivr, V jbaqrerq jub gur rys zvavba jnf gung jnf urycvat Tnynqevry bhg. Gura V ernyvmrq yngre gung vg jnf PRYROBEA. Bu, Pryrobea, rira ba svyz rirelbar xabjf Tnynqevry vf jnl zber njrfbzr guna lbh, naq lbh ner cerggl njrfbzr, Fve!

      • monkeybutter says:

        Lrnu, V gubhtug ur jnf whfg ure evtug-unaq zna hagvy fbzrbar pbeerpgrq zr. V'z fher gung gurer ner pevgvpvfzf bs erqhpvat Pryrobea'f punenpgre, ohg V ybir gung Tnynqevry whfg pyrneyl bhgfuvarf rirelbar ryfr.

    • Leah-san says:

      A very beautiful friendship. <3

    • tigerpetals says:

      Love Me and Despair by EdorasLass
      Unfortunately it has some spoilers, at least for the Two Towers and a bit of what the whole West thing is about, though I don't know when that part was revealed, so I don't know when this fic won't have spoilers.

    • Rheinman says:

      "There's also a scary moment where Galadriel is tempted to take the Ring, and we get a glimpse of what she might have become, if she chose to take it. Thankfully, she resists the temptation."

      Temptation abounds with the ring. Temptation to take it, temptation to use it. Two important lessons of this story are that the ends do not justify the means and that actions have consequensces, yet neither is delivered in an anvilicious way. (As TV Tropes would say. I, too, could spend weeks in that site before comming up for air.)

      • flootzavut says:

        I think I would be suspicious of anyone who could go on TVTropes and JUST read one page… anyone who has that kind of immunity to addiction… 😮 LOL 😀

    • Fenfen says:

      Fb dhrfgvba: Vf vg bssvpvny gung Pryrobea vf abg bar bs gur Pnyndhraqv? Orpnhfr jura n sevraq bs zvar svefg gevrq gb grnpu zr nobhg ovgf bs vg, ur zragvbarq gung Tnynqevry naq Pryrobea jrer gur ynfg bs gur Pnyndhraqv yrsg va Zvqqyr Rnegu qhevat YbgE. Jura V svanyyl tbg nebhaq gb ernqvat gur Fvyznevyyvba, gubhtu, vg zragvbaf gung Pryrobea jnf whfg bar bs Guvatby'f xvafzra jub fgnlrq jvgu uvz va Qbevngu nf bar bs gur Fvaqnev (V guvax), fb va zl pbashfvba V jrag gb GIGebcrf sbe na nafjre, naq vg fnvq gurer ner gjb qvssrerag irefvbaf: bar jurer Pryrobea vf n yrtvgvzngr Gryrev, naq gur choyvfurq bar jurer ur'f whfg sebz Qbevngu.

      • Tauriel_ says:

        Tbbq cbvag. V guvax V cersre gur Fvyznevyyvba irefvba – jurer Pryrobea vf n eryngvir bs Guvatby (juvpu zrnaf ur unf gur Gryreva eblny oybbq va uvz), ohg ur arire jrag gb Inyvabe. Vg frrzf gb zr gung gur yngre irefvba jnf Gbyxvra'f nggrzcg gb oevat Pryrobea pybfre gb Tnynqevry'f fgnghf, gb yrffra gur qvssrerapr orgjrra gurz. Juvpu qbrfa'g ernyyl jbex, orpnhfr va YBGE fur'f pyrneyl gur zber qbzvanag bar va gurve zneevntr, zber cbjreshy naq jvfre.

  4. MidnightLurker says:

    MUPPET LORD OF THE RINGS unspoilered update:

    Miss Piggy as PIGADRIEL.


  5. Jenny_M says:

    For some reason, when I first read the book as a kid, I was TERRIFIED of Galadriel. Like, genuinely scared as hell of her.

    I mean, I've gotten over it since, but I was afraid of Galadriel like I was afraid of the Professor in the Narnia books. They're both inherently "good" but something about the authority figure-ness upset me.

    • Juliana Moreli says:

      Va guvf fprar ba gur gurngre, gur zbivr whfg fgnegrq gb ohea naq gur yvtugf tbg bhg…V tbg fpnerq nf uryy…naq gura 20 zvahgrf yngre gurl chg nabgure ”ebyy” bs zbivr.

      Qba’g whqtr zr…V qba’g xabj gur evtug jbeq sbe gur ”zbivr ebyy”…

    • Shannon says:

      Lbh xabj jub cebonoyl funerf gung fragvzrag? Ryebaq. Ubyl va-ynjf, Ongzna!

    • nextboy1 says:

      Vg'f bar bs gur srj fprarf va gur zbivr V svaq uneq gb jngpu jvgubhg orvat ernyyl sernxrq bhg, cnegyl orpnhfr bs gur haarpprfnnel whzcvarff jura fur punatrf, ohg nyfb orpnhfr fur vf n trahvaryl sevtugravat naq cbjreshy punenpgre.

  6. MidnightLurker says:

    Oh, Galadriel. So awesome in so many ways that MUST REMAIN SPOILERS FOR SO LONG STILL. Byqre guna gur Fha naq gur Zbba. N erory ntnvafg gur Inyne, jub sbyybjrq Srnabe gb Zvqqyr-Rnegu. Cbffvoyl gur ynfg Abyqbe rnfg bs gur Frn, gur bayl Rys va Zvqqyr-Rnegu jub yvirq va gur Yvtug bs gur Gjb Gerrf. Zrzore va tbbq fgnaqvat bs gur Juvgr Pbhapvy. Znl unir urycrq oernx Qby Thyqhe. GOOD FREAKING GRIEF THE SPOILERS BURN WITHIN ME.

  7. Ryan Lohner says:

    Sam adding a verse about Gandalf's fireworks is so incredibly poignant, as if Frodo's song itself weren't enough.

    Bar bs zl snibevgr fgbevrf nobhg gur znxvat bs gur svyzf vf gung Pngr Oynapurgg unq nyjnlf jnagrq gb cynl n punenpgre jvgu cbvagl rnef, naq nsgre svyzvat gur JRGN perj znqr n avpr snapl obk sbe ure gb xrrc ure rne gvcf va nf n fbhirave.

    • rabidsamfan says:

      I love it that so many of Tolkien's characters so naturally express themselves in verse. But especially Sam, because I like to imagine him learning Bilbo's songs and a love of words and rhyme and music from Bilbo when he was still a very small child helping out his Gaffer in the gardens at Bag End.

      • flootzavut says:

        Also I think it's lovely that there's a distinct home-spun-ness to Sam's poetry – it is beautiful and poignant but also very "Sam"-ish, and it feels totally in character <3

      • Cassie5squared says:

        I agree – song is awesome. My favourite theory as to why everyone sings so readily is that Neqn jnf fhat vagb orvat. Vg rira trgf vgf bja puncgre va gur Fvyznevyyvba – "Gur Zhfvp bs gur Nvahe" – jurer n ahzore bs gur svtherf jub jbhyq yngre or gur Inyne gbbx erfcbafvovyvgl sbe fvatvat pregnva guvatf fhpu nf jngre, fgbar naq cynag yvsr vagb rkvfgrapr. Fb zhfvp fgvyy ehaf guebhtu gur jbeyq ol gur gvzr bs YbgE nf na rpub bs vgf bja perngvba, vafcvevat gur vaunovgnagf.

  8. ljrTR says:

    I'm at work so I'll just chime in w/a few notes – Galadriel is a really good character, I agree, Mark, and she iis much more than you see in this chapter. Poor Celeborn – I hope he gets some respect, if for now only reason than being her consort.
    But, yes, This Book, This Book! What an incredibly influential book it was & continues to be!

  9. rabidsamfan says:

    I think the people who first managed to translate the Rosetta Stone must have felt the way it does to read Tolkien after you've been reading all the things that borrow from him. It's like a door opening up in your head. A touchstone — something you'll measure everything else again come future.

    I was a Tolkien conference with a friend once, and it must be confessed that there were a number of people there who were less than kind when mentioning "The Sword of Shannara". My friend got annoyed about that, because unlike me she had read Lord of the Rings at a very young age and then had gone on to read The Sword of Shannara while still very young. "When you've been someplace you've loved," she said to me, "and you find a place that reminds you of it, you love it too, even if it isn't perfect."

    Sometimes I think half of fantasy (and fantasy roleplaying games) are just us trying to find our way back to Lothlorien.

    • allisona says:

      *waves hello*

      "Sometimes I think half of fantasy (and fantasy roleplaying games) are just us trying to find our way back to Lothlorien."

      Wow, that's so lovely. And so true.

    • flootzavut says:

      I LOVE what your friend said <3

    • ljrTR says:

      Your friend was very insightful but much more generous than I to Terry Brooks stuff. There is a difference between being influenced by another author & totally stealing from him! !!! Just my opinion…

      But I love this comment SO MUCH –
      "Sometimes I think half of fantasy (and fantasy roleplaying games) are just us trying to find our way back to Lothlorien. "
      Yes, trying to find our way back to Middle Earth. Lovely comment

      • flootzavut says:

        yes… it is a beautiful and true sentiment… 🙂

      • Seumas the Red says:

        Good authors borrow, great authors steal.


        [WORDPRESS HASHCASH] The poster sent us ‘0 which is not a hashcash value.

        • Seumas the Red says:

          Not a spammer, honest. 😛 Just never commented before. Something I did wrong? Oh, right, I have javascript blocked, oops.

    • Dreamflower says:

      So beautifully put! I count myself fortunate that, except for traditional fairy tales, as avid a reader as I was, my first exposure to modern fantasy WAS Tolkien.

      Of course, that meant that nothing else quite measured up. It may be why I did sort of like Sword of Shannara when I first read it– I didn't expect it to be LotR, but it was nice that it reminded me of it.

      But no other fantasy world is quite the same as Arda– which may be why I love fanfiction so much…

    • Eregyrn says:

      That quote from your friend is interesting — it gives me another perspective. Because I read Tolkien at a very young age, and completely fell in love with what he wrote, and soon thereafter I read The Sword of Shannara (which was close to when it was published, and it was the only one), and I didn't love it at all. I felt angry at it for trying to make me love it by trying to look like the thing I loved. But it was a pale imitation, and I felt that from the start.

      So while I don't, of course, disbelieve that it worked that way for your friend, it doesn't work that way for everyone.

  10. BetB says:

    Mark, I'm glad you have now become acquainted with Galadriel.

    Galadriel is strong, wise, understanding, loving and merry all at the same time. She is my favorite character in this part of the story. She is tall and beautiful, imposing yet approachable and understanding. Yet, she is not above the normal emotions and desires we all are subject to. I have felt that I'd like to be more like her.

    I always felt like she called the shots and not Celeborn but maybe the relationship is more complex than that. I don't really know. In my opinion, Celeborn comes off as a bit over-judgemental while Galadriel is more wise and thoughtful. I guess the combination of the two is better than each alone.

    I love the mirror and her discussion of what is "magic" and what is not. I don't know if this is spoiler so I'll rot13 it just in case: V yvxr gung fur haqrefgnaqf ubj gur zveebe npghnyyl jbexf fb vg'f abg zntvp gb ure. Vs fbzrguvat vf orlbaq lbhe yriry bs haqrefgnaqvat gura vg nccrnef gb or zntvpny. Vg whfg fubjf ubj zber cbjreshy naq jvfr gurl ryirf pna or.

    • msw188 says:

      Yes, I love how Tolkien treats the idea of "magic". To characters with these powers, it cannot have the same catch-all meaning that it does for us, who use it to describe pretty much anything we can't comprehend with science.

    • ljrTR says:

      Naq Tnyqevry vf Nejra'f Tenaqzbgure! Jung n onpxfgbel Tnynqevry unf, oneryl uvagrq ng va YBGE. V nterr, terng punenpgre.

    • Shannon says:

      Nj, V nyjnlf srry onq sbe Pryrobea, snaqbz-jvfr. Gur zbivr ernyyl qvqa'g uryc znggref, ohg V nyjnlf ernyyl yvxrq gurve cnegarefuvc. V zrna, grpuavpnyyl, Ybguybevra vf Pryrobea'f ernyz, abg Tnynqevry'f, naq ur qbrf pnyy gur fubgf. Ohg V guvax gurl unir n irel rdhny zneevntr, naq ur gnxrf ure pbhafry va onfvpnyyl rirelguvat. Nf sbe uvz orvat whqtzragny, V oryvrir fbzrobql jrag guebhtu vg va gur ynfg puncgre, ohg ur unf cerggl tbbq ernfbaf abg gb yvxr gur Qjneirf, orvat sebz Qbevngu naq nyy, naq Tnynqevry, orvat abg bayl n Abyqb ohg nyfb jvgu URE snzvyl va cnegvphyne, qbrfa'g ernyyl unir zhpu ebbz gb guebj fgbarf.

  11. Leah-san says:

    Ohhh, this chapter is amazing.
    I always loved and admired Galadriel, for she is such a well written and complicated character. She's something of a big Good, but it's not like she hasn't got flaws, and I like that. Plus, she's a woman, and well written women I always adored when I read books, even when I was only… eight or so. (I've read LOTR pretty early.)

    Oh, and I also loved how she treated Gimli, setting a change between the usual animosity between dwarves and elves and the future relationships between dwarves and elves. Go Galadriel!

  12. monkeybutter says:

    Is Camilla supposed to be Lobelia? I’m okay with you changing her name, because the indignity would probably make her head explode.

    So, yup, this chapter is one glorious mind orgy.

    Anyway, Sam gives the Mirror a good ol’ look because…I don’t know? She doesn’t really sell this idea to me and I most certainly wouldn’t look if she told me this:

    ‘For it shows things that were, and things that are, and things that yet may be. But which it is that he sees, even the wisest cannot always tell. Do you wish to look?’

    Come on, you gotta look. She thinks it’ll be good character building stuff!

    The Mirror of Galadriel is even better than the Mirror of Erised; it’s like that, the Pensieve, and the Beast’s magic mirror all rolled up into one, plus it can show whatever it wants if it feels like it, because Galadriel is better than everyone ever. All shall love her and despair! (Which is, by the way, one of the greatest lines ever.)

    Pippin was also great in this chapter: ‘What did you blush for, Sam?’ said Pippin. ‘You soon broke down. Anyone would have thought you had a guilty conscience. I hope it was nothing worse than a wicked plot to steal one of my blankets.’ My new head canon is that blanket-theft is the depth of Sam’s evil. Hobbits <3

  13. Ryan Lohner says:

    "Your quest stands on the edge of a knife. Stray but a little and it will fail, to the ruin of all. Yet hope remains while the Company is true." No pressure, guys.

    • settlingforhistory says:

      I love that part, it's like "We will all die if you make just one mistake, but don't worry we believe in you" as if their journey wasn't hard enough.
      The delima they are in is really interesting, if they fail Sauron will take over, if they win "Lothlorien will fade".
      So when they are saving the earth they are destroying paradise, wow just wow.

      • Rheinman says:

        I think that Galadriel spells it out nicely that while that may be the consequence of destroying the ring, it is neither Frodo's fault that it will happen or his responsibility to try to prevent it.

        Two thoughts:

        Life is pain, anyone who tells you different is selling something.


        I was born by the river in a little tent (The Anduin?)
        Oh and just like the river I've been running ever since
        It's been a long, a long time coming
        But I know a change gonna come, oh yes it will

        It's been too hard living but I'm afraid to die
        Cause I don't know what's up there beyond the sky
        It's been a long, a long time coming
        But I know a change gonna come, oh yes it will

        There been times that I thought I couldn't last for long
        But now I think I'm able to carry on
        It's been a long, a long time coming
        But I know a change gonna come, oh yes it will

  14. Mariska says:

    This review reminds me of many details that I had forgotten.

    Poem <3
    Va Qjvzbeqrar, va Yóevra
    Fryqbz unir jnyxrq gur srrg bs Zra
    Srj zbegny rlrf unir frra gur yvtug
    Gung yvrf gurer rire, ybat naq oevtug
    Tnynqevry! Tnynqevry!
    Pyrne vf gur jngre bs lbhe jryy
    Juvgr vf gur fgne va lbhe juvgr unaq
    Hazneerq, hafgnvarq vf yrns naq ynaq
    Va Qjvzbeqrar, va Yóevra
    Zber snve guna gubhtugf bs Zbegny Zra

    • Tnu, V pnaabg jnvg gvyy jr trg gb gung cneg! Jul vf gurer fb zhpu gvzr gb jnvg?

      Naq gunaxf sbe cbfgvat gung- V'q sbetbggra ubj ybiryl gung cbrz jnf. Vg urycf gung Tnaqnys gur Juvgr'f fnlvat vg, bs pbhefr. 🙂

    • Zeynep says:

      OK, it is truly scary that I can read that poem without going to It's scarier because I don't remember ever trying to memorize it, and yet here it is.

      Tolkien was great with verse, rhythm and sound, it turns out.

  15. Fheryl gurer’f bar rivy rys nebhaq, evtug?
    Jryy… va Fvyznevyyvba, lrf. Gurer lbh jvyy svaq zber guna lbhe funer bs genvgbef, perrcf, naq onfgneqf (fbzr bs gur ynggre dhvgr zntavsvprag). Nyzbfg nyy bs gurz jvyy or ryirf.

    I’ve always found Galadriel really impressive, though you’ve picked up on a lot more about her on the first read than I did after several 🙂 She’s clearly the voice of authority in the land, and as we find out, she’s the bearer of one of the rings. There are so many moments with Galadriel that I love in this chapter but I think one of them has to be this:
    “I say to you, Frodo, that even as I speak to you, I perceive the Dark Lord and know his mind, or all of his mind that concerns the elves. And he gropes ever to see me and my thought. But still the door is closed!”

    I feel like this chapter has some really beautifully written bits hidden among the large revelations and moments. Some examples:
    “All the while that they dwelt there, the sun shone clear, save for a gentle rain that fell at times, and passed away leaving all things fresh and clean. The air was cool and soft as if it were early spring, yet they felt about them the deep and thoughtful quiet of winter.” Okay, can I live there, please? Like, right now and not bother about the stupid midwest winters ever again?

    “Remember that the Mirror shows many things, and not all have yet come to pass. Some never come to be, unless those that behold the visions turn aside from their path to prevent them. The Mirror is dangerous as a guide of deeds.” J.K. Rowling, you thief. (I kid, I kid. Sort of.)

    Frodo’s poem is beautiful, and dare I say it, I almost wanted more of it.

    It’s the job that’s never started as takes the longest to finish.” Sam, I love you. And your Gaffer.

    The most powerful section of all though, is when Galadriel tells Frodo that if he destroys the Ring, it will cause the Elves’ power to wane. All this beauty that resides in Lothlorien- it’ll wither eventually if Frodo succeeds in what he has to do. And I find this exchange utterly heartwrenching:
    Frodo bent his head. “And what do you wish?” he said at last.
    “That would should be shall be,” she answered. “The love of the Elves for the land and their works is deeper than the deeps of the sea, and their regret is undying and cannot ever be wholly assuaged. Yet they will cast away all rather than submit to Sauron, for they know him now. For the fate of Lothlorien you are not answerable, but only for the doing of your own task. Yet I could wish, were it of any avail, that the One Ring had never been wrought or had remained for ever lost.

    Yeah… most of my comment is just quoting from this chapter. I love it so.

  16. Blah! ME :D says:

    You should know Rowling didn't read the Lord of the Rings books until after she was planning the plot of the Harry Potter novels, and when she did she didn't care a whole lot about them. But I believe she loved the Hobbit as a child and it's among her favorite children books! 😀 I can't remember where I read this though!

    • Tauriel_ says:

      Well, she did use an awful lot of stuff suspiciously similar to things in LOTR in her books…

      – Pensieve – a version of Galadriel's Mirror
      – the entrance to the cave in HBP that glowed white – the Doors of Moria
      – the cave in HBP with its lake and an island in the middle of it, holding a Horcrux – Gollum's cave
      – the Horcruxes (objects into which you put a part of yourself) – the One Ring
      – Dementors – the Nazgûl
      – gur jngre va gur ynxr jubfr jngre fubhyqa'g or gbhpurq orpnhfr bs gur Vasrev – gur Qrnq Znefurf

      • notemily says:

        Yeah, but by this time those were pretty much fantasy tropes because so many other things had used them as well. She doesn't have to have read LOTR specifically to be influenced by it, you know?

        • Cylena says:

          Not to mention the fact that Tolkien himself was influenced by earlier sources when it comes to a lot of things.

  17. Stingingpetals says:

    Please ROT13 in comments what moments you are most excited for Mark to read!

    I'll start with:

    Gur erghea bs Tnaqnys!

    Gerrorneq naq gur uboovgf.

    Gur ornhgvshy Snenzve.

    Rbzre naq Tvzyv'f qvfphffvba bs Tnynqevry naq Nejra.

    Gur qrrc ybir orgjrra Fnz naq Sebqb.

    • Sinnive says:

      Nentbea orpbzvat xvat!

    • Rbjla'f erirny naq ure naq Zreel wbvagyl qrfgeblvat gur Jvgpu-Xvat.

    • Zoli says:

      Gur pyvssunatre raqvat bs GGG, jurer Sebqb vf pncgherq ol Furybo

      Rbjla qrsrngvat gur Jvgpu Xvat (vs bayl orpnhfr V pna yvax gb n pbagrfg gung cebivqrq qbmraf bs tbetrbhf neg cvrprf!)

      Gur Zbhgu bs Fnheba naq gur zvguevy pbng

      • AmandaNekesa says:

        "Gur pyvssunatre raqvat bs GGG, jurer Sebqb vf pncgherq ol Furybo "

        THIS!! Jura V cybjrq guebhtu zl svefg er-ernq bs YbgE nobhg n zbagu ntb, bapr V tbg gb gur frpbaq cneg bs GGG naq rfcrpvnyyl gur cnegf jvgu Furybo, V whfg pbhyqa'g fgbc ernqvat! V xrcg guvaxvat, BZT Znex vf tbaan syvc bhg jura ur trgf urer!

    • Rheinman says:

      Fnehzna, lbhe fgnss vf oebxra

      Gur Evqr bs gur Ebuveevz naq gur erhavba bs Rbzre naq Nentbea ng Cryyrabe Svryqf

      Snenzve naq pbzcnal va Vguvyyvra, rfcrpvnyyl gurve frperg onfr. Va zl lbhgu, V vzntvarq vg nf gur hygvzngr gerrubhfr.

    • oxide says:

      Sebqb jnf nyvir, ohg gnxra ol gur Rarzl.

      Guhf pnzr Nentbea fba bs Nengubea.

      Abg vs V sbhaq vg ylvat ol gur uvtujnl.

      V nz ab zna!

    • Leah-san says:

      Tnaqnys pbzvat onpx naq orvat njrfbzr.

      Rirelguvat nobhg Gerrorneq

      Gur onggyrf.

      Nentbea orpbzvat gur xvat naq zneelvat Nejra.

      Rbjla orvat gur ONZS gung fur vf naq qrfgeblvat gur Jvgpu Xvat gbtrgure jvgu Zreel.

      Gur ornhgvshy oebznapr orgjrra Sebqb naq Fnz

      Tvzyv naq Yrtbynf orpbzvat ORFG SEVRAQF SBERIRE naq rire.

      Gur raq. ;__;

      Gur nccraqvprf. Ernq gurz, Znex, cyrrrrnfr.

    • Juliana Moreli says:

      Obebzve’f qrngu
      Zreel naq Cvccva trggvat pncgherq
      Tnaqnys’f erghea
      Gur qrfgehpgvba bs Vfratneq ol gur gerrf
      Furybo’f ynve
      Zbhgu bs Fnheba
      Rbjla naq Zreel xvyyvat gur Juvgpu Xvat bs Natzne (gubhtu gung V ybir jura ur fnlf va gur zbivr ”V’yy oernx uvz”.
      Uryz’f Qrrc
      Nentbea’f pbebangvba
      Jura Sebqb chgf gur evat va Zbhag Qbbz naq Tbyyhz evcf bss uvf svatre naq snyy…
      Naq bs pbhefr…gur tenl uniraf!

      • flootzavut says:

        Oooh and jura gur uboovgf ner ubabherq <3

        V'z npghnyyl ernyyl ybbxvat sbejneq gb gur zbzrag va gur zbivr jura Nentbea fnlf "Zl sevraqf, lbh obj gb ab bar" – V guvax gung jvyy cebzcg fbzr frevbhf synvyvat sebz Znex!

        • AmandaNekesa says:

          THIS! <3 Can't wait!

          • flootzavut says:

            Znxrf zr jryy hc naq pubxr hc rirel gvzr – vg'f fhpu n jbaqreshy zbzrag, naq gurl cynl vg fb ornhgvshyyl.

            • AmandaNekesa says:

              Lrnu, vg pbhyq unir ghearq bhg fbzrjung pbeal ohg V guvax gurl qvq n terng wbo jvgu gung fprar. V guvax gur fprar erfgf n ybg ba Nentbea'f qryvirel bs gur yvar, naq gur uboovgf' ernpgvbaf, naq gurl qvq jryy fb vg ernyyl jbexf gbtrgure gb perngr n ornhgvshy fprar. V ybir ubj vg cebivqrf fhpu n pbagenfg gb gurve erpbtavgvba (be ynpx bs) ng ubzr va gur Fuver, cnegvphyneyl sbe Sebqb.

    • @redbeardjim says:

      Nevfr, nevfr, Evqref bs Gurbqra!
      Sryy qrrqf njnxr: sver naq fynhtugre!
      Fcrne funyy or funxra, fuvryq or fcyvagrerq,
      n fjbeq-qnl, n erq qnl, rer gur fha evfrf!
      Evqr abj, evqr abj! Evqr gb Tbaqbe!

    • Dreamflower says:

      Znex svaqvat bhg vg'f Tbyyhz sbyybjvat gur Pbzcnal

      Gur erghea bs Tnaqnys

      Cvccva orvat njrfbzr qhevat gurve rfpncr nggrzcg

      Gur Guerr Uhagref



      Tbyyhz snyyvat va jvgu gur Evat

      Gur Fpbhevat bs gur Fuver

      Fnz naq Ebfvr


    • Mart says:

      Tvzyv’f rybdhrapr, svefg va uvf eryhpgnagyl fgngvat uvf qrfver sbe uvf cnegvat tvsg, naq gura uvf ornhgvshy zbabybthr ba gur Pnirf bs Ntynebaq.

    • BetB says:

      1. Rbjla: V nz ab zna!…..Vs lbh gbhpu uvz V jvyy fzvgr lbh! V ybir guvf jubyr fprar.

      2. Gur znqarff bs Qrargube.

      3. Gur Terl Uniraf, ubj Sebqb vf jbhaqrq orlbaq ercnve ohg Fnz, Zreel naq Cvccra ner abg.

      And so many others….

      • flootzavut says:

        Bu naq Znex frrvat Ovyob ntnva sbe gur ynfg gvzr, jura ur jnf fb pbaivaprq gung ur jvyy abg frr Ovyob ntnva…

      • AmandaNekesa says:

        "3. Gur Terl Uniraf, ubj Sebqb vf jbhaqrq orlbaq ercnve ohg Fnz, Zreel naq Cvccra ner abg. "

        Lrnu, gung cneg nyjnlf trgf zr *favss*

    • Katie says:

      Gur erghea bs Tnaqnys!

      Gur Cnynagvef! (vs ur unq guvf ernpgvba gb gur zveebe, ur'f tbvat gb sernx bhg bire gur cnynagvef)

      Gung jura Sebqb yrnirf gur sryybjfuvc, jr sbyybj nentbea, yrtbynf naq tvzyv vafgrnq.

      Jura ur _svanyyl_ svtherf bhg gung Nentbea vf va ybir jvgu Nejra :).

      Gur oynpx fnvyrq obngf orvat haqre Nentbea'f pbzznaq.

      Gurbqra nyzbfg xvyyvat Snenzve.

      Jura ur _svanyyl_ svtherf bhg vg'f Tbyyhz jub vf sbyybjvat gurz 🙂 (erirnyrq fbba)

    • fantasy_fan says:

      -Obebzve'f orgenlny naq qrngu

      -Gur erghea bs Tnaqnys. V guvax V'yy or noyr gb urne Znex'f fpernzf sebz zl ubhfr.

      -Cbrgel gung chgf rira gur punenpgref yvfgravat gb vg gb fyrrc

      -Qreauryz'f erirny

      -Furybo (Isn't it funny how that word looks in Rot-13?)

      -Gur aba-yvarne fgbelgryyvat jurer Gbyxvra gbgnyyl qebcf Sebqb'f fgbel sbe 12 puncgref. Naq whfg jura jr ner jbaqrevat jung jvyy unccra gb Cvccva, ur qebcf gung gb tb onpx gb Sebqb, bayl gb yrnir uvz jvgu gur znwbe pyvssunatre bs Sebqb'f pncgher. Jurerhcba jr phg onpx gb Zvanf Gvevgu. Naq whfg fgbc jvgu n Gebyy ba Cvccva! Vg znxrf gur Zbhgu bs Fnheba ovg jbex, ohg vg'f tbvat gb sehfgengr Znex gb ab raq.

      -Gur snpg gung gur fgbel qbrfa'g raq ng Zg. Qbbz. Ubyqvat gur cncreonpx ng gung cbvag, lbh'er bayl unys-jnl guebhtu gur cntrf. Jung ryfr pbhyq gurer or yrsg gb gnyx nobhg? YBY

      -Gur erghea bs ONEYVZNA OHGGREOHE naq Ovyy gur Cbal

      -Gur Terl Uniraf, naq gur hggre ovggrefjrrgarff bs gur raqvat.

      • Rheinman says:

        ONEYVZNA OHGGREOHE looks like Russian swearing in ROT 13

      • flootzavut says:

        Jr unq n pbairefngvba gur bgure qnl nobhg ubj Furybo ybbxf va EBG13 – gur anzr ybbxf fb phgr naq syhssl, yvxr vg'f n xvggra be fbzrguvat, vg'f whfg fbbbbbb jebat :b

        • AmandaNekesa says:

          ururur… lrnu V jnf whfg guvaxvat gur gvzr jr jrer gnyxvat nobhg gur nyzbfg syhssl, fbsg, fahttyl fbhaqvat anzr gung pbzrf sebz Furybo va ebg13. Naq vg'f FB JEBAT! :p

      • Sinnive says:

        -Gur snpg gung gur fgbel qbrfa'g raq ng Zg. Qbbz. Ubyqvat gur cncreonpx ng gung cbvag, lbh'er bayl unys-jnl guebhtu gur cntrf. Jung ryfr pbhyq gurer or yrsg gb gnyx nobhg? YBY

        THIS is probably the thing I love most about the book.

        Obbxf gung raq jvgu gur pyvznk bsgra yrnir zr xvaq bs qvfnccbvagrq – V jnag gb frr ubj gur punenpgref trg onpx ubzr naq ubj gurl qvfphff naq qrny jvgu jung unf unccrarq. V guvax guvf vf ornhgvshyyl qbar va YbgE.

    • notemily says:

      Rbjla. Whfg… Rbjla.

    • sporkaganza93 says:

      Gerrorneq! V ybir Gerrorneq, ur'f nznmvat.

      Gur Terl Uniraf gbb, orpnhfr V yvxr jura Znex trgf rzbgvbaf. Naq gura V'yy or ybbxvat sbejneq gb uvz frrvat gur svyz irefvba bs gung fprar orpnhfr UBYL FUVG FB ZNAL SRRYF. V nyjnlf, nyjnlf pel ng gung fprar.

    • rabidsamfan says:

      Fnz nf gur evatornere
      Gur Fpbhevat bs gur Fuver naq rfcrpvnyyl jung unccraf gb nyy gur gerrf nsgre Fnz funerf Tnynqevry'f tvsg jvgu nyy gur uboovgf.

    • AmandaNekesa says:

      Can I just say ALL OF THIS? ALL OF THE ABOVE!

      Seriously though:

      Fnz ernyvmvat Sebqb vf yrnivat naq fnvyvat jvgu gur Ryirf sebz gur Terl Uniraf. Gur snpg gung Sebqb fnirf gur crbcyr bs Zvqqyr-rnegu abg sbe uvzfrys, ohg sbe bguref gb rawbl yvsr naq serrqbz. V <3 lbh, Sebqb!

      Zg Qbbz jura Sebqb pynvzf gur evat, naq nyy ubcr frrzf ybfg, ohg guebhtu Tbyyhz, gur evat vf qrfgeblrq.

      Fnz'f haraqvat yblnygl naq oenirel guebhtubhg, va fhccbeg bs Sebqb naq gur dhrfg gb qrfgebl gur Evat. Cnegvphyneyl jura ur svtugf Furybo naq gur Bepf va Pvevgu Hatby guvax ur'f n zvtugl Ryivfu jneevbe! Ybir gung cneg!

      Gur Oernxvat bs gur Sryybjfuvc, fcyvggvat gur fgbel vagb fb znal cnegf. Znex vf tbvat gb syvc bhg jura ur ernyvmrf gur svefg unys bs GGG qbrfa'g vapyhqr bar ovg bs Sebqb & Fnz'f fgbel.

      Sebqb'f fgnapr bs aba-ivbyrapr (be gur yrnfg onggyvat/xvyyvat arprffnel gb ertnva gur Fuver) va gur Fpbhevat bs gur Fuver.

      • flootzavut says:

        Fnz'f ernpgvba gb Sebqb yrnivat >'( *jnvy* YBIR SBERIRER FNZJVFR TNZTRR! <3

        • AmandaNekesa says:

          V xabj!!! V guvax gung'f bar bs gur zbfg urnegoernxvat nfcrpgf bs Sebqb yrnivat jvgu gur Ryirf – frrvat Fnz'f hggre qvforyvrs gung ur'f npghnyyl tbvat gb yrnir. Frna qvq fb jryy jvgu guvf fprar va gur zbivr… *grnef*

          Fvqr abgr: V nyfb nofbyhgryl ybir jung Sebqb fnlf gb Fnz ng gur raq bs Gur Terl Uniraf puncgre, nobhg ubj Fnz unf gb or bar naq jubyr sbe znal lrnef, naq pnaabg nyjnlf or gbea va gjb. <3 Sebqb & Fnz'f Oebznapr <3

  18. Dragonsong12 says:

    So here's an odd bit of trivia that someone else may have brought up, but I haven't been reading the comments here regularly. Apparently back in the early sixties, Tolkein and The Lord of the Rings were nominated for the Nobel by C.S. Lewis. The committee decided not to select Tolkein due to his poor prose and stated that they found nothing of worth in his books.
    …I guess he has to settle for authoring one of the most beloved and influential series' ever created and the best loved British books ever penned.

    For another bit of silliness, check out the first ever movie of The Hobbit:
    It's less than 12 minutes long!
    Its actually kind of interesting. The art style is neat and I'm amazed by how much of the story they got into 12 minutes, but it's not really the hobbit, just a hobbit-inspired fantasy story. Still an interesting watch.

    • flootzavut says:

      Stupid Nobel committee…

    • tigerpetals says:

      It was brought up with a link to the revelation of who was rejected by that particular committee, but I don't remember when.

      That's a cute movie. I see that Gandalf is eager to send Bilbo but unwilling to go himself.

      Trees instead of stone

      Gollum looks like a four-legged spider.

      Mirkwood looks kind of bright.

      Eew, wasn't it established that the princess was a child! And now Bilbo's in love with her! Then they what, rule a land yet retire quickly with the implications of having another adventure when Gandalf says so?

  19. flootzavut says:

    TVTropes is just sooooo much fun!

    OK back to properly reading the review now…

    • hpfish13 says:

      When I first started my job, I didn't have a lot to do, so I would sit, waiting for the phone to ring, doing something obviously not work so people would know I was available to do whatever they needed done. Most of that time I read endless pages of TV Tropes. They are so awesome!!!!! (and incredibly addicting)

      • flootzavut says:

        Yeah it's like eating something delicious, you can't read just one page… in fact I usually end up opening a bunch of references/links and then find I've spent at least three times as long as intended…!

  20. Erica says:

    I think there’s a lot that Tolkien drew from classical Roman and Greek mythology in this book, but I could probably spend a couple million words talking about that. DON’T PRESS ME.

    *makes puppy dog eyes*

    I'll start. The idea that oracles (and divine things in general–yeah, Galadriel isn't technically divine but she's close enough) are beautiful but also terrible, and that when you ask an oracle something you'll get the truth, but you won't understand it–that's straight up Greek myth right there.

    I've never really had problems with the length/density of Tolkien's prose. It seems to me to fit my mental picture of the narrator of a story like this–a sort of Anglo-Saxon version of Homer. I can see why it might not be to some people's taste, but I can't think of a place it really hurts the story. It seems that, in the small human moments, the lens zooms in, so to speak. This: ‘Yes,’ she said, divining his thought, ‘it is not permitted to speak of it, and Elrond could not do so. But it cannot be hidden from the Ring-bearer, and one who has seen the Eye. Verily it is in the land of Lórien upon the finger of Galadriel that one of the Three remains. This is Nenya, the Ring of Adamant, and I am its keeper.’ is pretty dense, yeah. But then just a little later, this is so simple and full of sadness: ‘I pass the test,’ she said. ‘I will diminish, and go into the West, and remain Galadriel.’

    • Zoli says:

      I like Tolkien's descriptions but sometimes the plot wanders a bit, which can be annoying. I finally got hold of a copy of Fellowship and I'm trying to re-read it but it is just tiring at times. I got to the chapter with Tom Bombadil the other day and I was just like "ugh Tolkien I don't care get to the plot." I may have to skip over to Weathertop where things start happening.

      • Zoli says:

        As for the mythology bit, Galadriel's mirror is built off the classic idea that you can scry for visions of events (past/present/future) in a pool or bowl of water.

    • Caitlin says:

      But don't forget the fact that Tolkien was also drawing on myth & legend from the more Northern lands (if not primarily?). Things like Beowulf & the Kalevala & old Germanic legends.

  21. flootzavut says:

    "it seemed to him that he looked suddenly into the heart of an enemy and saw there love and understanding"

    I LOVE this. Truly one of my favourite moments/lines <3

    "V fgvyy pna’g oryvrir guvf unccrarq va gur svefg “obbx,” l’nyy. JUNG VF PBZVAT NSGRE GUVF VS GUNG UNCCRAF FB RNEYL."


    "Or it could show you what Galadriel wants for lunch tomorrow. LOOK I DON’T KNOW WHAT THE GUIDELINES ARE."

    Bwahahahahaha 😀

    So glad you love Galadriel – she's definitely a fantastic character, there have been many ROT13'd comments about everyone being excited about you getting to meet her!

    Film spoiler: V ernyyl yvxrq ubj gurl tnir Tnynqevry rkgen fcnexyrf/yvtug ersyrpgvat va ure rlrf.

  22. rubyjoo says:

    "I pass the test," she said. "I will diminish, and go into the West, and remain Galadriel."

    For me, these have always been the most brilliant, the most beautiful, the most important words in the whole book. They are about the exquisite sadness of all things passing, about making the right choice, about knowing when to take control and when to give in, and about the overwhelming importance of always being true to oneself.

    I am one of those readers who will always defend Tolkien's style to the bitter end. LotR is not just about his story-telling or his amazing ideas but the utter beauty and appropriateness of his prose. His words and expressions stay with you and seem to express some of your most difficult thoughts in the same way that Shakespeare's do and Rowling's words (et al) do not.

    • flootzavut says:

      Yes… that moment also really cements how totally excellently fabulously wonderful and amazing Galadriel is.

      And style wise, I think it's also totally appropriate to Tolkien's intentions… this is a new mythology.

    • ljrTR says:

      I remember so many of the awesome lines from LOTR! Tolikien had a way with a phrase that many arguably better writers do not

  23. Eira says:

    I love how Tolkien choses to display the power and wisdom in Galadriel. Most of the events in these books are told. It's practical as to the complexity of The Middle Earth and the length of the novel, but he never fails to SHOW us the most important stuff instead of telling.

    And since we are talking about the mythological background of Tolkien's world, I am surprised that no one had mentioned the old norse mythology, which may have been the biggest inspiration. I mean, the word Middle Earth is a direct translation of the old norse Miðgarðr. I also find some reccuring themes as the prospect of Ragnarok is close in Tolkien's tale already from the beginning, and also I thin there's a similarity between the Mirror of Galadriel and the Old Norse poem Voluspá, which is about seeing into the future, or at least almost ( But I DUNNO, maybe I am just rambeling, any experts at the area here?

    • @LarrikJ says:

      Well, he wrote "The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún" in the style of ancient Norse poetry, so I can't imagine you are wrong.

    • Tilly says:

      I don't know much about Norse stuff, but 'middangeard' = the physical, mortal world (as opposed to heaven or similar) is also a concept that pops up a lot in Anglo-Saxon texts.

  24. hpfish13 says:

    This chapter is just so full of wonder. And the illustration for it matches that.

    <img src=""&gt;

    I love how ethereal it is.

  25. hick says:

    There's one more female character: Lobelia Sackville-Baggins. Don't you just love her? 😉

  26. Elisa says:

    See, I don't really think that others have stolen from Tolkien. It seems more to me that they have ALL borrowed from myths and legend. Tolkien was just among the first to do it right, and to create a whole separate world around it. If you want to talk magic mirrors, you've only got to go as far as Grimm fairytales. I know you aren't criticizing people for having similar tropes, but I just feel that if I wrote a fantasy book tomorrow, I would do all my research in mythical books and probably end up with similarities. JK Rowling herself has stated that she took many of her creatures and monsters and whatnot from those kinds of books.

    • hick says:

      Thank you. That's what I think as well.

    • SisterCoyote says:

      I kinda see what you're saying, but the thing is, fantasy was only a children's genre before Tolkien– he popularized modern use of all these myths and legends. But more than that, there's stuff he came up with on his own. that is still in use today– Mithril, for example. Every video game and their grandma has mithril armor and swords, but the word literally translates to Moria Silver, and to my knowledge, Tolkien was the first to come up with the idea. There's other things too, like, if I'm not terribly mistaken, orcs, and… er, that's all that's coming to mind.

      So I think it's a little of both, but in my mind, Tolkien was the one who really brought all this to life, and made it accessible to modern literature (and now, games and stuff, too).

  27. Deckmaster says:

    Tolkien drew from a number of sources for inspiration in creating his mythology but the biggest influence is probably the Kalavela, Finland's national epic. Although Tolkien was a professor of Anglo-Saxon he was a big fan of the Finnish language; Quenya, the Elvish Latin, is based partly on Finnish (Sindarin, modern Elvish, is based more on Welsh).

  28. oxide says:

    OK, forget not being prepared. You're not going to SURVIVE. Everything you've mentioned in your reviews, there's a more of it in TTT and there's a LOT more in RotK. I'm not referring to anything specific or spoilery; I mean stuff like geography and world-building, conflicted morals, suspense, action, info dumps, rich history, character, dense writing, and the like.

    • ljrTR says:

      YES YES YES – a shame that LOTR is so short, cause whenever I get to the end I want MORE of this stuff.

  29. Tauriel_ says:

    Lbh xabj, V'ir whfg ernyvfrq gung, jura Ébzre fcrnxf onqyl nobhg Tnynqevry naq Ybguyóevra, Tvzyv orpbzrf gur Zvqqyr-rnegu rdhvinyrag bs Untevq:

    *oenaqvfurf nkr* QBA'G. VAFHYG. YNQL TNYNQEVRY. VA SEBAG. BS ZR.


  30. tigerpetals says:

    Does Frodo have Gandalf radar? He is always having visions of him when he's not there. Of course they also end up being at the wrong time, since Gandalf told him he had those dreams long after he had already done what Frodo saw him doing. And it might not be Gandalf.

    When Frodo offers Galadriel the Ring, she reminds me of Wnqvf sebz gur Aneavn obbxf. Of course the one female character to appear so far in an important way is very cool, but that doesn't make up for the overall lack of them. I'm not counting Goldberry, Arwen, or Lobelia.

    It's neat that Legolas has chosen to be friendlier to Gimli, and that Gimli accepted him.

    • Tauriel_ says:

      Well, I'll rather have a fewer female characters, but most of them badass and/or very well characterised, than a lot of female characters who are largely bland and forgettable.

      Quality over quantity. 😉

      • sporkaganza93 says:

        But there are loads and loads of male characters and most of them aren't bland or forgettable!

        Still, I'm happy with the female characters we do get in this story, because they're really awesome.

  31. ravenclaw42 says:

    There is just so much to love and so many lines to quote in this chapter. I mean, I love the action of LotR, I love the chapters where shit gets bewilderingly, intensely, heart-poundingly real (looking at you, Bridge of Khazad-dum), but there is a whole other, deeper, more lingering love for the chapters where everything is still and beautiful and restful and melancholy.

    Just chiming in to add to the gushing over Galadriel. Her onqnff onpxfgbel is just an added bonus; she won the very depths of my heart forever with her treatment of Gimli. My favorite line in the chapter: "If our folk had been exiled long and far from Lothlorien, who of the Galadrim, even Celeborn the Wise, would pass nigh and would not wish to look upon their ancient home, though it had become an abode of dragons?" I love the reference to the Lonely Mountain; I love that she respects the dwarves' history, language, and actions as well as respecting their grief and loss.

    Movie talk: Gur gerngzrag bs Tvzyv nf zbfgyl pbzvp eryvrs va GGG naq EbgX (juvyr gur ryirf ner gerngrq fhcre-frevbhfyl) qbrf vex zr n ovg orpnhfr V unq ernq gur Uboovg va zl rneyl puvyqubbq naq jnf n ovttre sna bs gur qjneirf guna gur ryirf. Ohg V ybir uvf cneg va gur SbgE zbivr, naq V ybir Pngr Oynapurgg'f qryvirel bs "Qb abg yrg gur terng rzcgvarff bs Xunmnq-qhz svyy lbhe urneg, Tvzyv fba bs Tybva." Gur npgbef ernyyl fryy gung ybiryl zbzrag jura Tvzyv, jub vf hfrq gb uvf phygheny uvfgbel orvat vtaberq be qrzbavmrq, trgf n uvag bs fvaprer, abawhqtzragny flzcngul, naq vg nyzbfg oernxf uvz jvgu eryvrs naq tengvghqr.

    Qba'g or unfgl, Znex! Svefg gurer vf n fgenvtug fgnve, gura n jvaqvat fgnve… naq gura n ghaary…

    • hpfish13 says:

      When I read you last bit of rot13 all I could think was

      Frperg ghaary!
      Frperg ghaary!
      Guebhtu gur zbhagnva!
      Frperg, frperg, frperg, frperg ghaary! Lrnu!

      My brain sometimes….. *shakes head*

    • flootzavut says:

      I love the love between Gimli and Galadriel.

      This line in particular makes me well up:

      "it seemed to him that he looked suddenly into the heart of an enemy and saw there love and understanding"

    • sporkaganza93 says:

      Vg'f zl ubcr gung gur qjneirf jvyy or gerngrq n ybg zber frevbhfyl va gur Uboovg zbivrf.

      (Abg gbb frevbhfyl, gubhtu.)

  32. threerings13 says:

    Ok, I was going to save this comment for tomorrow, but after reading Mark's reaction to Galadriel, I have to talk about my relationship with her.

    So I LOVE Galadriel. I did from the time I first read this book at age 11. (Once again, see my username. I've been using this name since I was 12). Anyway, I went to Catholic school, and one day in 7th grade my religion teacher told us that to get rid of nightmares we should pray to our guardian angel every night before bed. She told us to give our guardian angel a name and ask him/her to keep us safe from nightmares. Naturally, I named my angel Galadriel. And every night FOR YEARS I prayed to Galadriel before bed.

    I find it HILARIOUS that I actually PRAYED to a Tolkien character. And I wonder why I became Pagan a few years later. But anyway, I still have a very special feeling for Galadriel.

    Movie talk: Fb, va nqqvgvba gb abg yvxvat gur trareny pbybe fpurzr bs Ybguybevra va gur zbivr, V unir vffhrf jvgu gur qrcvpgvba bs Tnynqevry. Pngr Oynapurgg vf terng, ohg vg'f zber rqvgvat naq qverpgbevny qrpvfvbaf V qvfyvxr. V qba'g guvax lbh trg rabhtu bs gur frafr bs Tnynqevry'f tbbqarff, sbe rknzcyr gur cnffntr Znex dhbgrf nobhg ure qrsrafr bs Tvzyv. Fur'f znqr gbb fpnel, V guvax. Ure fpnevarff vf fhogyr va gur obbx, ohg vg'f NALGUVAT ohg fhogyr va gur svyz. Nyfb, V jvyy arire abg pevatr qhevat gur "Nyy funyy ybir zr naq qrfcnve" cneg. V ungr gur rssrpgf gurl guebj ba ure. Vg'f whfg purrfl naq bireqbar. V jvfu gurl jbhyq unir yrsg vg gb npgvat naq yvtugvat vafgrnq bs tbvat nyy "Ybbx, JR UNIR PBZCHGREF." Vg'f qvfgenpgvat naq V ernyyl qvfyvxr vg.

    • Eira says:

      Cutest story EVER.

    • tigerpetals says:

      Lrnu, jngpuvat gur zbivr ba Sevqnl fubjrq zr n Ybevra gung'f abg nf cerggl nf va gur obbx, juvpu fcrpvsvpnyyl abgrf n zber tbyq naq fvyire ybbx. Gubhtu jr nyfb whfg qba'g trg zhpu bs gur sberfg, gbb.

      V yvxrq Tnynqevry va gur svyz, ohg V frr jung lbh zrna gung gurl rzcunfvmrq ure fpnevarff naq cbjre naq abg fb zhpu tbbqarff naq qvcybznpl. Nyfb, juvyr gur Qnex Dhrra fprar vf cerggl zrzbenoyr gb zr, gur fcrpvny rssrpgf jrer n ovg zhpu fb V pbhyq haqrefgnaq fbzrbar svaqvat gurz purrfl.

    • fantasy_fan says:

      V guvax nyy gur ryirf ner fpnevre va gur zbivrf guna gurl ner va gur obbx. Uhtb Jrnivat'f Ryebaq pbhyq arire or qrfpevorq nf "xvaq nf fhzzre". Gur erfg bs gurz, rira jura orvat onpxtebhaq, srry yvxr gurl pbhyq ghea ba lbh ng nal zbzrag.

      (Rkprcg sbe Yrtbynf. Ur'f n phgr chcclqbt.)

    • In re movie talk: GUNAX LBH! V ungr jung gurl qvq gb Tnynqevry va gur svyzf (naq zbfg bs gur ryirf, sbe gung znggre, ohg gung'f n enag sbe nabgure gvzr). Ohg gur jevgref whfg qvqa'g frrz pncnoyr bs jevgvat ure va nyy ure pbzcyrkvgl- vg jnf whfg n ybg bs rlr fubgf naq fgenatr yvtugvat naq gur birenyy rssrpg jnf engure qvfgheovat (gur snpg gung gurl gbgnyyl obgpurq Ybguybevra'f pbybe fpurzr qvqa'g uryc rvgure). Naq gubfr rssrpgf whfg znxr zr tebna- npghnyyl V'ir gnxra gb fxvccvat nyy gur Ybguybevra ovgf rkprcg gur tvsg-tvivat synfuonpxf. Vg whfg znxrf zr gung znq.

      Fbeel… qvqa'g zrna gb hayrnfu gung. V whfg unir znal srryvatf nobhg gur zbivrf naq abg nyy bs gurz ner travny.

    • sporkaganza93 says:

      V npghnyyl ernyyl yvxr gur fcbbxvre svyz Tnynqevry. Ohg V whfg ernyyl yvxr guvatf gung ner xvaqn fcbbxl va trareny, fb lrnu.

  33. fantasy_fan says:

    The other bit of magic in these books gung guvf erzvaqf zr bs vf gur Cnynagvev. Tnynqevry'f zveebe fubjf jung "znl or" naq gurersber abg nyjnlf gur gehgu; gur nzovthvgl vf xabja naq fubhyq or nppbhagrq sbe ol gur ivrjre. Gur Cnynagvev fubj gur gehgu, ohg sebz n pregnva cbvag bs ivrj, naq obgu ner na rdhnyyl haeryvnoyr thvqr gb npgvba. Fnehzna frrf gur gehgu bs Fnheba'f cbjre ohg orpbzrf pbaivaprq bs gur varivgnovyvgl bs uvf ivpgbel. Fnheba frrf Cvccva, naq whzcf gb gur pbapyhfvba gung gur evatornere vf va Begunap, be Ebuna ng yrnfg, naq frgf uvf cyna vagb zbgvba cerzngheryl. Qrargube cebonoyl vf fubja Sebqb va gur gbjre, naq qrfcnvef. Nentbea fubjf Fnheba gur ersbetrq fjbeq bs Ryvaqvy, gur gehgu, ohg pnfgf qbhog vagb uvf zvaq nobhg uvf vagragvbaf. Trggvat vasbezngvba, fbzrgvzrf jvgubhg pbagrkg, unf nyjnlf orra qnatrebhf.

    • Tauriel_ says:

      Qrargube vf npghnyyl fubja gur Pbefnve fuvcf fnvyvat hc Naqhva, ohg qbrfa'g xabj gung Nentbea naq uvf zra ner ba obneq.

      But otherwise, THIS to everything you said. 🙂

      • fantasy_fan says:

        Bu lrf, ur fnj Nentbea'f fuvcf naq zvfvagrecergrq gurz. Ohg V nyjnlf gubhtug, ybbxvat ng gur gvzryvar, gung bar bs gur guvatf Fnheba zvtug unir fubja uvz jbhyq or Sebqb va gur gbjre. Abg gung Fnheba haqrefgbbq jung ur unq, ohg creuncf gubhtug ur jnf Qrargube'f fcl gung jnf pncgherq. Na hggreyl hafhccbegrq gurbel, V xabj, ohg cynhfnoyr gb zl zvaq.

  34. Dreamflower says:

    This is such a beautiful chapter– they are allowed a chance to rest and to grieve and to bond. Lothlorien is such a perfect place for it! I really enjoy fanfic gapfillers set in this time period…

    Jura V jnf ernqvat gur obbx sbe gur svefg gvzr, V yvxrq Tnynqevry hc hagvy gur Zveebe frdhrapr. Naq gur rira gubhtu fur ershfrq gur Evat, sbe fbzr ernfba vg znqr zr fhfcvpvbhf bs ure– n fhfcvpvba gung erznvarq evtug hc hagvy gur svefg gvzr Sebqb hfrq uvf cuvny. Ybbxvat onpx ba zl svsgrra lrne byq frys, V fgvyy nz abg fher bs jul V jnf fhfcvpvbhf…creuncf V qvq abg yvxr gur jnl fur hcfrg Fnz? V qba'g xabj.

    Abj bs pbhefr, V haqrefgnaq n ybg zber.

  35. tigerpetals says:

    I forgot to embed the video. This one has illustrations! [youtube cBt9PeyABoQ youtube]

  36. tigerpetals says:

    Well, Aragorn might be a bit biased, since the end of the last chapter has a look at him in the past when he seems much more innocent. But it could also depend on what the word evil is supposed to mean. I thought he meant that no harm would come to them in Lothlorien, and Galadriel seems to say that she uses Nenya to keep nasty creatures out, in addition to having armed elves watching the borders.

    Sam got to have a peep to add to his character. He's there solely for Frodo, and has to face that choice and the possible consequences for the people he left behind, instead of thinking he was only endangering himself. The Shire might not be as safe as it was.

  37. empath_eia says:

    Galadriel has been my hero for a decade and a half. I still want to be her when I grow up. She’s pretty much my favourite character period, in all my fandoms.

  38. fantasy_fan says:

    I will sometimes spend half a day on TVTropes and it will just fill me with endless joy? YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND HOW MUCH I LOVE THAT SITE.

    I have spent too long on that site too. And now, I'm spending half a day on this one because it's JUST AS MUCH FUN!

  39. bookworm67 says:

    "I love seeing tropes twisted and modified. I love seeing them used explicitly. I love inversions. I will sometimes spend half a day on TVTropes and it will just fill me with endless joy? YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND HOW MUCH I LOVE THAT SITE."

    THIS. SO MUCH THIS. Oh my god. I love deconstructions, inversions, etc. etc.

    No need to be ashamed of troping. Even if it's like a productivity black hole.

  40. Peg says:

    One thing that I think hasn't been mentioned (it may have been, but I just skimmed the comments): A lot, I think, of the 'feel' of Galadriel can be traced to the fact that Tolkien was a devout Roman Catholic, and a large part of his devotion to that was his veneration of the Virgin Mary, the pure maidenly intercessor for the sins of the world. His biographer, Humphrey Carpenter makes the point that Tolkien's mother died when he was very young, that he came to believe that part of the reason she died was that her family rejected her for her Roman Catholic faith, and that his Catholicism (and specifically, his veneration of Mary) became subtly intertwined with his devotion to the memory of his mother. You can see hints of that, perhaps, in Gimli's awe toward Galadriel.

  41. arctic_hare says:

    More art today! This one is a gorgeous portrait of Galadriel by John Howe, who needs no introduction. 😀

    <img src="; border="0"/>

    I love this chapter. <3 It's one of those breathers between all the tense moments and nonstop action, and it has a particularly lovely feel to it. I adore the description of Lorien that mentions the "deep and thoughtful quiet of winter", and that one line sums up the mood of the chapter entirely. It's quiet and thoughtful, and reflective, and that ~speaks to me~. Or something. I would love to spend a serious amount of time there just eating and drinking and resting and walking around the trees. PARADISE, AMIRITE? Why isn't Lothlorien real? :'(

    Most importantly, though, we meet GALADRIEL. I'm so happy you love her already, Mark! 😀 Welcome to the fanclub! She is one of my favorite characters too, because she is so fascinating and awesome. She is wise and kind and thoughtful, and her respect for Gimli and the dwarves and their culture is moving. What she says about how if they were exiled from Lothlorien, they would still wish to look upon their home even if it were a dragon's nest is so poignant and true. The elves love their home dearly, and have many fond memories of it, and would be greatly pained at being driven from it; no different are the dwarves, and they cannot be faulted for yearning to return to their ancestral homes.

    Galadriel has a lot of other wonderful lines, but my other favorite of hers comes at the very end of the chapter, when Sam expresses his desire for her to take the One Ring, because he thinks she'd put things to right and stop evil people and make them pay. She has this to say: "I would. That is how it would begin. But it would not stop with that, alas!" That, to me, is one of the great keys to her character. She is a very wise and compassionate person, who at first would use the ring with the best of intentions.But even she is not immune to the Ring's corruption, and would not be able to set it aside, and in the end would do many terrible things that she would still believe were for the good of all. She is tempted by the Ring out of desire to do these good things that Sam believes she would do, yet she resists it because she knows her own susceptibility to its darker powers and wishes to remain herself and not be changed.

    Meanwhile, Sam continues to be amazing. <3 Love that hobbit. And is this the beginning of a beautiful friendship we see beginning between Legolas and Gimli? Dare we hope? Methinks the ice has most definitely been broken! I love it. <3 But then, friendship tropes are my very favorite. Hence why I love Sam and Frodo's relationship so much. Also, the song that Frodo comes up with about Gandalf is at once both lovely and sad; and I love Sam's verse about the fireworks.

    As for Tolkien's prose, I used to find it dense, and sometimes it is, yes. But now that I'm older, I'm better able to appreciate the beauty of it. That man really knew words and how to use them perfectly, and it shines through in his writing. I'm becoming a bigger fan by the day with this re-read!

  42. SweetVerda says:

    I'm pretty sure that the reason Tolkein doesn't have many women characters in his books is because the women of Middle Earth are so awesome that the books would implode into a black hole of awesomeness that would suck in the Earth if he included more than five of them. Galadriel, Nejra, Rbjla naq Yhguvra ner fbzr bs gur orfg, zbfg vagrerfgvat punenpgref va gur obbxf. Nygubhtu vg qbrfa'g ernyyl rkphfr uvz sbe abg rira zragvbavat jbzra unys gur gvzr.

    I think that everyone has a line that strikes them more deeply than all the other profound lines in the books. Mine would be:

    ‘I will diminish, and go into the West, and remain Galadriel.’

  43. Cakemage says:

    Oh, Galadriel. She is quite possibly my favorite character of all time. She's the one who made me realize that I liked girls, 'cause I was head over heels for her from the moment she was introduced.

  44. Alice says:

    <3 <3 <3 this chapter!!!
    Here is some art dump xD

    1.Galadriel by Alan Lee

    2.Caras Galadhon by Ted Nasmith

    Galadriel by Ted Nasmith

    3.Galadriel by Hildebrandt

    4. Galadriel's Mirror by Wyatt

    Hope you guys like it!

    • notemily says:

      Dear Ted Nasmith, I love you, but in that one with Galadriel in the foreground and then Frodo and Sam going down the steps behind her, why do Frodo and Sam look like demented gnomes? This is why you should stick to landscapes.

      That Hildebrandt one is amazing though. She straight-up looks like an angel.

      • ljrTR says:

        that's one of the few Hildebrandt images I really like

      • Alice says:

        Yeah :D,I’m with you on this one,but I posted that image because Galadriel looked so fine…

      • AmandaNekesa says:

        Yeah, I love me some landscapes of Ted Nasmith, but most of his art that includes close-ups of characters (particularly the hobbits) just makes me cringe. Why are the hobbits' eyes always so dark-looking/shadowy? It makes them look very shady and not on the side of good (because they kind of look like demon eyes or something), and just distracts me completely. His landscapes are magnificent, though.

  45. baruchan says:

    CELEBORN APPRECIATION POST! (Because he needs some love thrown his way too.)

    When I first read this chapter, Celeborn reminded me more of the Fair Folk of lore than how elves are represented in these books — fey, dangerous, quick to anger but also quick to laugh. I don't believe he's as cruel as the Fair Folk we're familiar with, though — I just think he's more like Thranduil than, say, Elrond. Znlor vg'f n Fvaqne guvat.

    Ohg jr trg fb yvggyr onpxfgbel nobhg uvz, fvapr zbfg bs gur sbphf vf ba Tnynqevry, juvpu znxrf frafr nf gur obbx jnf jevggra sebz gur uboovgf' cbvag bs ivrj, naq gurl uneqyl rire vagrenpgrq jvgu uvz. Vg nyfb qbrfa'g uryc gung Gbyxvra uvzfrys pbhyqa'g znxr hc uvf zvaq nf gb jung uvf onpxtebhaq vf — va Gur Fvyznevyyvba, ur jnf Ryh Guvatby'f xvafzna naq n zrzore bs uvf pbheg. Ohg nppbeqvat gb gur Hasvavfurq Gnyrf, Gbyxvra jnf pbagrzcyngvat n Gryreva rys onpxtebhaq, znxvat uvz n fba be tenaqfba bs Xvat Byjë. Fb va gung irefvba, ur'f n Pnyndhraqv, jub qrpvqrq (jvgu Tnynqevry) gb fnvy onpx gb Zvqqyr-rnegu (jvgubhg gur Inyne'f crezvffvba!) orsber gur Xva-fynlvat gb rkcyber naq shysvyy gurve nzovgvbaf.

    It also takes a special kind of person to marry someone as awesome as Galadriel and not turn out to be jealous or resentful of all the adulation she receives. Gubhtu V jbhyq yvxr gb xabj jung ur guvaxf bs Tvzyv'f pehfu ba ure 😀

  46. Shay_Guy says:

    I will sometimes spend half a day on TVTropes and it will just fill me with endless joy? YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND HOW MUCH I LOVE THAT SITE.

    You… I… jk…

    /looks at spoiler policy

    /looks at site tagline

    /thinks about the MASSIVE numbers of spoilers stumbled upon at that site, including for stuff on Mark's list like Puella Magi Madoka Magica and of course Buffy


    • Caravelle says:

      I hadn't thought of it but that is an EXCELLENT point. What gives ?
      (Also, do I recognize your username from Slacktivist ?)

      • Shay_Guy says:

        Yes, you do. Been commenting there for three years, though only occasionally.

        Some details: Avatar has 6,046 pages on that site linking to its page. Buffy has 9,490; LotR has 7,897; Evangelion has at least 7,253. Code Geass "only" has 5,970, Death Note 5,350, and a mere 2,810, 2592, and 2,447 for MLP:FiM, BSG, and Cowboy Bebop, respectively.

        • Steve Morrison says:

          I believe I’ve seen Alfgifu on one of the previous threads, too! BTW, am I the only one who’s ever wondered what would happen if Fred read Twilight and Mark read Left Behind? I.e. would either change his mind as to which were the World’s Worst Novels?

        • SisterCoyote says:

          (Oh hay, Slacktivites! Repra-sent!)

    • notemily says:

      Mark also has a Tumblr, and if you spend five minutes on Tumblr you'll be spoiled for about ten fandoms as well. I don't know how he does it.

    • sporkaganza93 says:

      Wait, he's going to watch Madoka Magica?


      • Shay_Guy says:

        YOU ARE EXCUSED. (I've still only seen two episodes myself, and given certain restrictions I've placed on myself, I'll be lucky to keep up a 1 ep/month rate. But I should still be done before he starts.)

  47. notemily says:

    Spoilery movie image from this chapter (well, just casting and specific-dialogue spoilers I think, but I'll leave it as a link for those to click if they wish)

  48. Gan_HOPE326 says:

    "And now at last it comes. You will give me the Ring freely! In place of the Dark Lord you will set up a Queen. And I shall not be dark, but beautiful and terrible as the Morning and the Night! Fair as the Sea and the Sun and the Snow upon the Mountain! Dreadful as the Storm and the Lightning! Stronger than the foundations of the earth. All shall love me and despair!"

    When she spoke like this, I was SO in love I thought I'd have been glade to be slave in her queendom of love and sorrow. It's one of my favourite quotes EVER.

  49. Caravelle says:

    But there are very few women in this universe at all. No seriously, there’s Arwen, Camilla, and now Galadriel. How the hell is this even possible? How do any of these species procreate? Shouldn’t there be women around by default? Given this gross oversight, the fact that Galadriel is the one to refute her Lord’s statement and welcome Gimli with open arms….oh, I like you. I like you a lot, Galadriel.

    Yep, yep, yep. This is a world with few women, whether it was an oversight of Tolkien or whether he’d purposefully defend it as a world where all the politics are done by men and politics is all he was concerned with, saying the book doesn’t pass the Bechdel test up to now is an understatement. And you may or may not have noticed it yet, but the women up to now are very much characterized by their appearance. I was going to say “more than the men” but I’m remembering that descriptions of the Elves’ beauty are actually rather common and may be more gender-neutral than I’m assuming; I’ll have to check.

    Anyway, as you’re seeing with Galadriel, while you can say LOTR is a work with no women and they’re disproportionately decorative, BY THAT STANDARD it has some pretty cool female characters 😉
    Certainly I think a feminist with suitably lowered expectations could read this book without crying in their porridge.

    I get that Aragorn is quite fond of this place, but there’s no evil in the entirety of Galadhril? None at all? No one can be evil? Surely there’s one evil elf around, right? Just like there could possibly be one good orc, right?
    That’s an interesting question; you might be interested in reading The Silmarillion later for an extended take on this. As for LOTR… I guess discussing what answers to that question the books may or may not contain and what they might be would be spoilery 😉

    (obligatory warning for The Silmarillion : I started reading the mythological prologue fantasy books often start off with. Then I started being surprised at how long it was. Then I realized THAT’S THE WHOLE BOOK)


    (You know there’s this book I’ve heard Mark might review someday so I won’t name it with a character called Cvccva Tnynqevry Zbbapuvyq ? Screw everyone, I approve of that name)

    I’m sure Galadriel knows. Cause she’s a bamf like that.

    ‘I pass the test,’ she said. ‘I will diminish, and go into the West, and remain Galadriel.’
    I’m sure I’ll have lots of Favorite Lines as I re-discover the book reading these reviews, but this is one of my Favorite Lines. It really illustrates a way in which The Lord of the Rings remains different from (and better than) so many of the high fantasy works that ripped it off, and that’s the meaning of the One Ring.

    In fact, since I read the HP reviews so recently, compare with the Deathly Hallows. Gurer ntnva lbh unir gur zrffntr gung frrxvat cbjre sbe vgf bja fnxr vf qnatrebhf, naq gung njrfbzr nf gurl ner gur Qrnguyl Unyybjf ner rkgerzryl qnatrebhf naq gur orfg jnl gb hfr gurz vf abg gb hfr gurz ng nyy.
    Lrg Uneel hfrf gur pybnx nyy gur gvzr, ur hfrf gur evat gb tbbq rssrpg, naq nygubhtu gur Ryqre Jnaq vf gur bar ur srryf zbfg fgebatyl ur fubhyqa’g hfr, ur znxrf gur qrpvfvba gb hfr vg bapr naq gura arire ntnva. Naq gung jbexf bhg terng sbe uvz.

    Ba gur bar unaq V jnag gb uvtu-svir Ebjyvat orpnhfr nf n puvyq V ungrq guvf Urebrf Pnaabg Unir Avpr Guvatf gebcr (JUL qbrf gur gernfher nyjnlf raq hc ng gur obggbz bs n ibypnab ng jbefg naq qbangrq gb n zhfrhz ng orfg va puvyqera’f svpgvba ?????), ba gur bgure unaq V pna’g qral gung univat n Evat bs Cbjre gung lbh PNA’G hfr RIRE orpnhfr rira gur fgebatrfg, RIRA GUR CEBGNTBAVFGF pna’g jvgufgnaq vgf nqqvpgvir sbepr, vf zber cbjreshy.

  50. PrefectSarah says:

    "Just like there could possibly be one good orc, right?"

    Um, no…

    V ynhturq zl nff bs ng guvf!! Whfg gur gubhtug bs gurer orvat BAR tbbq bep fbzrjurer va Zvqqyr-Rnegu vf uvynevbhf. Whfg jnvg gvyy ur trgf fbzr zber bar-ba-bar gvzr jvgu gurz. Ur zvtug ergenpg guvf fgngrzrag.

    • Raenef_the_5th says:

      V guvax gung jnf n abgr ba n pbzzrag WEEG fnvq uvzfrys? Fbzrguvat nobhg erterggvat znxvat bepf gur jnl gurl jrer, naq gung gurer zvtug or tbbq bepf fbzrjurer, whfg gurl'er arire "ba fperra" fb gb fcrnx.

      • MasterGhandalf says:

        Nf Gbyxvra zragvbaf va fbzr bs uvf bgure jevgvatf, jr qba'g trg na ragveryl bowrpgvir ivrj bs gur bepf, fvapr nyzbfg nyy bs gur barf jr frr ner rvgure fbyqvref va gur freivpr bs Zbetbgu/Fnheba/Fnehzna be envqref bcrengvat ba gurve bja, nf va Gur Uboovg. Jr qba'g frr zhpu bs gur bepf "ng ubzr", fb gb fcrnx. Rira fb, pbafvqrevat ubj naq jul Zbetbgu znqr gurz, gurer'f n *ernfba* jul n qvfcebcbegvbangr ahzore bs bepf ner va nsberzragvbarq bpphcngvbaf. Fb vg jbhyq or orggre gb fnl gurl'er *zbfgyl* rivy engure guna *nyjnlf* rivy, ohg jr'er arire va n tbbq cbfvgvba gb frr gur rkprgvbaf.

      • Atrus says:

        Gbyxvra pnzr hc jvgu frireny fbyhgvbaf gb gur ceboyrz bs Bepf qhevat uvf yvsr, abar bs juvpu jnf pbzcyrgryl fngvfsnpgbel; jurgure gurl jrer whfg chccrgf, be navznyf, be perngherf jvgu fbhyf, vg bcrarq n jubyr arj pna bs gurbybtvpny naq jbeyqohvyqvat vffhrf – rfcrpvnyyl fvapr ur gbyq uvzfrys ur jnfa'g nyybjrq gb tb naq punatr nalguvat sebz gur choyvfurq YbgE NAQ ur jnagrq gur fbyhgvba gb or pbzcngvoyr jvgu uvf Pngubyvp hcoevatvat.

        VZUB gur orfg fubeg-grez fbyhgvba ur pnzr hc jvgu jnf gung n tbbq Bep jbhyq cebonoyl trg xvyyrq va uvf puvyqubbq, fb nyy gubfr jr zrrg va gur fgbel ner orlbaq gur erqrrzvat dhnyvgvrf bs gur urebrf. Vg'f fgvyy n ovg tengvat ubj unccl rirelbar vf gb pubc gurz qbja , pbafvqrevat gung nyy gur bgure onq thlf trg ng yrnfg fbzr zrnfher bs haqrefgnaqvat.

    • SisterCoyote says:

      Ebg13'q sbe Fvyz Fcbvyref.

      V jbhyq'ir ynhturq, ohg guvaxvat nobhg rivy ryirf whfg znxrf zr guvax bs gur Xvafynlvatf. Naq vg vf vzcbffvoyr gb ynhtu nobhg gur Xvafynlvatf.

  51. Weston says:

    Ubj zhpu vf Znex tbvat gb ybir Rbjla?

  52. vivelabagatel says:

    One of my very favourite LOTR fics is a short monologue of Galadriel's thoughts on the Ring, Wise, Fearless and Fair (Some Silm allusions, but nothing that spoils or detracts, I think – except possibly the ending, which has more impact if you realise gung Pryrobez tnir ure gur anzr)
    /random plug. I love how Mark's project is such a chance to stroll down Memory Lane and rediscover all the things I loved about Tolkien fandom.

    • baruchan says:

      I love how Mark's project is such a chance to stroll down Memory Lane and rediscover all the things I loved about Tolkien fandom.

      It's a stroll down Memory Lane indeed! I've been re-reading the stories that I've gobbled up like a fiend from years ago, and it's making me happy 🙂

  53. Meltha says:

    Galadriel = legilemens. Dude, she gave Nenya to Dumbledore or something, and nobody at Hogwarts could see it because they didn't see the Eye. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!

    Also, I love Galadriel. Tolkien waited a really long time for a developed female character, but she's worth the wait.

  54. MrsGillianO says:

    ‘I pass the test,’ she said. ‘I will diminish, and go into the West, and remain Galadriel.’

    One of my favourite lines of the whole book. She turns down unimaginable power and has no illusions she could just keep everything the same. Instead she chooses her integrity and agency. How beautiful is that?

  55. stefb4 says:

    "I will sometimes spend half a day on TVTropes and it will just fill me with endless joy? YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND HOW MUCH I LOVE THAT SITE."

    But Mark, I do. I do.

  56. Hotaru_hime says:

    Gimli has a major crush on Galadriel.
    But anyway, the most important thing to me is what Sam sees in the mirror, because goddamn, I want to be a hobbit and if the Shire is messed up goddammit.

  57. Novice says:

    If you really want to understand these characters, understand the depth of their history, who they really are (Galadriel and Gandalf, Sauron, the balrogs) you will have to read The Silmarillion, which is the vast historical tableau going back to the very origins of Tolkien's mythology, of which The Lord of the Rings is but one tale at the end of the Third Age.

    And then there are the various message boards on which some very articulate, scholarly, discussion of the books can be entered into…and then you'll be a fanboy forever…bwahaha!

  58. Steve Morrison says:

    I agree. Others have already pointed out older sources for scrying pools and magic mirrors; let me point out that the idea of a horcrux is very ancient, and Tolkien himself said so:

    The Ring of Sauron is only one of the various mythical treatments of the placing of one’s life, or power, in some external object, which is thus exposed to capture or destruction with disastrous results to oneself.
    –letter to Rhone Beare

    None the less this detail is plainly only a secondary use of an ancient and very widespread folk-lore notion, which does occur in fairy-stories;1 the notion that the life or strength of a man or creature may reside in some other place or thing; or in some part of the body (especially the heart) that can be detached and hidden in a bag, or under a stone, or in an egg. At one end of recorded folk-lore history this idea was used by George MacDonald in his fairy story The Giant’s Heart, which derives this central motive (as well as many other details) from well-known traditional tales. At the other end, indeed in what is probably one of the oldest stories in writing, it occurs in The Tale of the Two Brothers in the Egyptian D’Orsigny papyrus.
    –On Fairy-Stories

    Frazer had an entire chapter on the motif in The Golden Bough!

  59. SisterCoyote says:

    For those interested in Galadriel and unworried about LotR-end and Silmarillion spoilers, someone I know recently wrote a 'fic on Tnynqevry fnvyvat Jrfg gb Nzna, naq snpvat rirelguvat fur yrsg oruvaq naq fnj cnff njnl gurer. It's really gorgeous, and I highly recommend it.

  60. Atrus says:

    Fb Znex unfa'g lrg haqrefgbbq gung gur Rlr vf Fnheba? V guvax V nyjnlf sbhaq vg boivbhf, rira ba zl svefg ernqvat.

    Movie stuff: ncneg sebz gur greevoyr Tnynquehyx zbzrag, V ernyyl qvfyvxr gung gurl phg gur erirny bs Araln sebz guvf fprar bayl gb gnpx vg ba gur yrnivat bs gur Sryybjfuvc. Bu url, guvf evat gung fubhyq or vaivfvoyr gb nalbar ohg Sebqb? Rirelbar pna frr vg ba zl unaq! Olr abj!

  61. ladysugarquill says:

    That song? It's one of the very few things in books that has ever made me cry T_T

  62. Mike V. says:

    So regarding the question of isn't there one evil elf and one good orc, there certainly unir orra rivy ryirf, be ng yrnfg ryirf gung qb rivy guvatf. Gurer ner zber guna n pbhcyr va gur Fvyznevyyvba. Nf sne nf bar tbbq bep… V qba'g xabj vs vg'f va guvf obbx be va gur napvyynel zngrevnyf gung erirnyf gung Bepf ner jung unccraf jura ryirf tb Shyy Rivy.

  63. Smurphy says:

    My sister walked in and started talking to me in the midst of Galadriel's ring speech and I sorta flipped at her. I think I have been looking forward to reading those few lines more than anything in the three books… aside from Bombadil of course.

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