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PostPosted: Thu Dec 16, 2010 10:24 pm 
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Galin wrote:
OK, but I would include that one also need not (necessarily) read a fostering into this because we know the form of the tale as it existed elsewhere. Perhaps there's later evidence of the fostering in any event, but The Tale of Years mention appears to be earlier, and at the moment I don't remember anything else here (I checked the letter itself and it doesn't seem to be mentioned).


Yes, the letter (211, not 113; I've edited both my post and your quoting of my post to fix that error) is later than The Tale of Years, which Christopher indicates dates to around 1951-2. And there is some clearcut difference in the stories, since in The Tale of Years (as in the old Quenta Noldorinwa the twins go straight from being captured to being fostered, whereas in the letter they were captured, then left in cave, and then found. I think the fact that the "left in a cave" element is totally new is the best argument for the proposition that the fostering concept was abandoned.

But what I am really baffled about right now is why I don't say anything at all in Arda Reconstructed about the fact that in both The Tale of Years and in the old Quenta Noldorinwa it is Maedhros who fosters the twins, not Maglor as in the published Silmarillion. That appears to have been an editorial change, unless I am missing something here, and is one that I certainly should have noted. It would seem to me right now that it probably was made to accommodate the change that was made later in the chapter (which Tolkien inexplicably edited without editing the earlier part of the chapter) in which Maglor is the one who is more sick of the oath than Maedhros, but in any event I should have noted it.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 17, 2010 2:52 am 
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As far as the fostering (going back to 1930), I think it goes:

Qenta Noldorinwa: Maidros > changed to Maglor (in a note). Quenta Silmarillion: Tolkien skipped over this part. Tale of Years: Maidros is back (and also forswears his oath). Letter 211...?

I think that's the short version!


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 17, 2010 3:32 am 
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Yeah, I went back to my original notes, and saw that Maidros had been changed to Maglor in the Quenta Noldorinwa notes, and since that was what was used as the source for that paragraph, there was no need for me to note any change.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 17, 2010 12:01 pm 
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Do you think Tolkien was possibly switching the roles again in the TYs? considering Maidros is noted both with respect to the fostering, and forswearing his oath.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 17, 2010 1:51 pm 
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Either that or he just forgot that he had changed it. :)

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 17, 2010 5:16 pm 
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I considered that too... considering that I often enough suggest that Tolkien forgot something he had already published! :D


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 2:23 pm 
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Voronwë, I recently noticed that in Arda Reconstructed you seem to say that the idea of Gil-galad as Angrod's grandson could likewise be argued to be 'ephemeral' -- I say likewise here in that Gil-galad as Fingon's son was characterized as ephemeral by CJRT.

How so? I mean, if you mean that it wasn't published by JRRT himself for instance (and so was generally subject to further revision), isn't that a rather broad characterization that could be applied to so many other things?


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 4:16 pm 
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I was wondering when someone would question that. I should have known that it would have been you. I think at this point you are my closest reader. ;)

I simply meant that the idea of Gil-galad as Angrod's grandson (and, of course, of Orodreth as Angrod's son rather than his brother, and as Gil-galad's father) was not a fully developed idea that was set in stone and incorporated into any of the main Silmarillion constituent texts. My feeling was (and is, though I am open to being convinced otherwise) that Christopher was faced with a couple of different possibilities, either of which presented difficulties, and that he ultimately went with the one that required less rewriting of the texts that he was working with. I can't really argue with that decision, though I won't have complained if he had gone the other way as well.

As a point of comparison, one of the decisions that I criticize is the use of the older story in which Morgoth himself stabs the Two Trees, rather than Ungoliant destroying them herself. Though the latter wasn't published by Tolkien (of course neither was the former!) I don't consider that in any way an "ephemeral" idea because it was firmly developed in the last major work that Tolkien did on the Quenta text itself. Certainly it is possible that he would have decided if he had come back to the work himself to go back to the old story, but absent him doing so from my perspective I think we have to accept the new story as the way that he saw it (of course its possible that he said something to Christopher to the contrary, or that there is a text we don't know about that implies the contrary, but without that information, we have to go with what we have).

I agree that the way I put that was somewhat clumsy. There is evidence that the idea of Gil-galad as Fingon's son was an ephemeral idea in that there is a later story. There is no later story than Gil-galad as Angrod's grandson, and thus no direct evidence that it was an "ephemeral" ideal. I'm just not convinced that it was set in stone.

Does that make sense?

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:18 pm 
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That makes sense, yes :)

And you hit the target as to why I was wondering too. Thanks.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2011 9:09 am 
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Voronwë the Faithful wrote:
I agree that the way I put that was somewhat clumsy. There is evidence that the idea of Gil-galad as Fingon's son was an ephemeral idea in that there is a later story. There is no later story than Gil-galad as Angrod's grandson, and thus no direct evidence that it was an "ephemeral" ideal. I'm just not convinced that it was set in stone.

Does that make sense?

Having just read this thread, I want to point out that having a later story is no evidence of being "ephemeral". Had Tolkien written something in the 1930s, and while never explicitly mentioning it again it was clear that it was in the background, only to be superseded by a text written in 1971 - the earlier text would definitely not be considered as such.

Regarding the topic of Gil-galad's ancestry, there are three fascinating (to me) questions:
    1. Why did Christopher chose the son of Fingon possibility for the main text - despite being aware of later contradicting texts?
    2. Why did he later decide he was wrong? What has changed, and when?
    3. In Unfinished Tales, Christopher edited the text of Aldarion and Erendis to contain "Ereinion Gil-galad son of Fingon", and did so silently - without even mentioning the existence of other "traditions"; on the other hand, he had no qualms refering to different ideas regarding Celebrimbor. Wht the difference?


As I've hinted elsewhere, I think I have an idea what the answer might be. But I need to double-check before posting it.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2011 12:45 pm 
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I will look forward to your further thoughts!

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