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PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2005 6:21 pm 
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The copy that I bought was through Amazon; wasn't that a paperback (though not used)?


Yes. It was postmarked England, from a U.K. company so I didn't think it had any connection to Amazon .. just goes to show what I know :oops:

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"Too many Fingolfins, not enough Sams."

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2005 7:56 pm 
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Wow, I didn't know that it came from England. What a world we live it!

(And now I'll stop chatting up your Athrabeth thread. :oops: )

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2005 8:03 pm 
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I looked on Amazon, and they do indeed have a paperback copy (for $13). They also had a copy for $500. :shock: I think I may end up ordering one or seeing if I can buy one. Thanks for the advice. :) I shall continue to look. And stop spamming your lovely thread. I really only meant to say how interesting it was and express frustration at not finding a copy.

Edit! My mum just came in and said that she needed to go up to Newton to buy more knobs for the cabinets. Coincedentally, it's just down the street from the best (and rather cheap) bookstore around. =:)

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 23, 2005 12:09 am 
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This is my, as yet limited, understanding of Tolkien’s explanation for The Fall of Man in Arda and their consequent despair and the diminishment of Hope.

The Fall of Man came as a result of mankind’s worship of Morgoth as God. Before those dark days, Andreth believes the old legends tell that death was not natural to men.


From Tolkien’s notes on the Athrabeth: The Tale of Adenel:

‘Some say the Disaster happened at the beginning of the history of our people, before any had yet died. The Voice had spoken to us, and we had listened. The Voice said: ‘Ye are my children. I have sent you to dwell here. In time ye will inherit all the Earth, but first ye must be children and learn.

The tale goes on to say that Men were impatient … and we desired to order things to our will; and the shapes of many things awoke in our minds. Therefore we spoke less and less to the Voice.

And then, a fair form appeared among them (shades of Annatar!) and seduced the Men into worshipping him. … “Greatest of all is the Dark’, he said, ‘for it has no bounds. I came out of the Dark, but I am its master. For I have made light. I made the sun and the moon, and the countless stars, and the Dark in which they are set.

And so the fall began as Men were first in awe, and then seduced, and finally enslaved by their fear.

The Voice of Eru is heard only once more …Ye have abjured Me, but ye remain Mine. I gave you life. Now it shall be shortened, and each of you in a little while shall come to Me, to learn who is your Lord: the one ye worship, or I who made him.

A vengeful Old Testament God, this Eru. At least in the minds of the Atani. He will punish his children for their haste and for their naiveté in falling prey to Morgoth’s bright raiment and silky promises … he will take away their immortality and punish them with death.

Andreth will not speak directly to this seeming harsh punishment as told in the old legends but instead tells Finrod when he presses her …

'Nay, lord, the Wise among Men say: “We were not made for death, not born ever to die. Death was imposed upon us” And behold! The fear of it is with us always and we flee from it for ever as the hart from the hunter.’

And being thus pursued, Men have no Hope? Said Finrod.

‘They have no certainty, and no knowledge, only fears, or dreams in the dark,’ answered Andreth. ‘But hope? Hope, that is another matter of which even the Wise seldom speak.


Now Admir ( looking up) is the hope of a good outcome, which although uncertain, has some foundation to it. It does require some degree of faith but I would suggest that it is based on past history … in other words, it is not blind, or totally lacking reason … it is not a fool’s hope.

Andreth suggests that men lack even Admir …

That the sins of her forefathers have bereft the Atani even of Admir, of any realistic hope …’those who left the lands of despair and the Men of darkness and journeyed west in vain hope: it is believed this healing may yet be found, or that there is some way of escape. But is this indeed Estel? Is it not Admir rather; but without reason: mere flight in a dream from what waking they know: that there is no escape from darkness and death?

I suppose Admir is considered the lesser hope because it is grounded in some sort of reason. It’s attributes are, in a way, concrete. Whereas Estel has no such foundation being entirely faith based upon the unseen and the unknowable. It is Trust. What’s interesting to me is that the concept of Estel is developed by the Elves of Arda, who are not ephemeral beings, they are perhaps even more grounded in historical reality by virtue of their fixed and final death. And yet they ‘trust’ in the wisdom of Eru that beyond the end of Arda, somehow each fëa will be transformed into the final joy. Naked Estel, the Elves call it. Stripped of all conceit, down to the bare bones of trust based upon faith that the Creator is Wholly Good.

Extraordinary!

I’m afraid I have wandered all over the place with this post … it’s just that there are so many different thoughts flying around inside my puny little brain it’s really difficult to pin any one single thing down and examine it … each idea gives rise to another idea and before I know it I’m out on a limb with no discernable way to get back … and the ground is a long way down.

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Ever mindful of the maxim that brevity is the soul of wit, axordil sums up the Sil:


"Too many Fingolfins, not enough Sams."

Yes.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 23, 2005 2:39 am 
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Extraordinary!

I’m afraid I have wandered all over the place with this post … it’s just that there are so many different thoughts flying around inside my puny little brain it’s really difficult to pin any one single thing down and examine it … each idea gives rise to another idea and before I know it I’m out on a limb with no discernable way to get back … and the ground is a long way down.


I know just what you mean, Sass! I think I'll probably wait to see what Ath has to say before attempting to comment further.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2005 7:42 am 
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Well, gee, gosh, golly. :suspicious:

I've been chomping at the bit to discuss this work for over three years, and now, when the opportunity comes along, I'm feeling all tongue-tied (finger-locked???). It seems that I, like you, Sassy and Voronwë, have been trying to keep on top of an avalanche of ideas that seems bent on burying me, so to find a little haven of safety (for the moment, anyway), I’m going to begin with what is in my heart.

First and foremost, I love the Athrabeth. I love it for its language. I love it for its structure. And I love it for its evocation of hope and fellowship. I loved it before I read the author’s commentary, and before I read the notes on the author’s commentary, and before I read the notes on the notes on the author’s commentary ;) . These detailed and scholarly writings somehow remain quite apart from the emotional bond I feel for the work itself, and while they are indeed fascinating and most worthy of long discussion here (in which, hopefully, I'll have more to say), they are not what comes first to mind when I think of the Athrabeth. What comes to mind is two people reaching out to each other with words from the heart, and discovering, each in the other, a new hope unlooked for and a new understanding that has been hidden in the shadow of despair.

“Now it chanced that on a time of spring.....” I love how the discussion between these two wholly sympathetic characters is based on a “chance” meeting during the season that heralds the reawakening of life long dormant, and the rising of light over darkness. It is so apt a setting, as is the place where Finrod and Andreth sit together: next to a fire that casts its warmth and light upon them…..I can almost see it reflected in their eyes, touching their faces with a golden glow, chasing off the shadows. Of course I have no idea if Tolkien purposed all this symbolism that speaks to me of personal illumination, of one idea’s “spark” igniting another, of the promise of hope and understanding being born after a cold, dark winter.

The structure of the piece is really quite extraordinary: twenty pages of running dialogue between two stationary speakers that is exquisitely balanced. I think that there’s no doubt that much of its power is derived from Tolkien’s use of the singular opposites of male and female to represent the collective opposites of the two kindreds, and the text itself allows each to “move forward” in speech, and then seamlessly recede so that the other can take the lead. It’s almost like reading a dance.

It is a dance of words which I actually appreciated first for the skill and beauty of their form, and then for the power of the ideas they revealed. I think I often read Tolkien that way……first with my “reader’s ear” open to the unmistakable rhythm and melody of his language, and second with my “analytical eye” open to the thoughts that flow from his words – sometimes in torrents, but more often in the guise of deep and subtle wells. Here, I think, is a fine example of the “dance” ('snipped' for some needed brevity):

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Andreth"Otherwise it is with us: dying we die, and we go out to no return. Death is an uttermost end, a loss irremediable. And it is abominable; for it is also a wrong that is done to us . . . but there is another difference also . . . One is but a wound in the chances of the world, which the brave, or the strong, or the fortunate, may hope to avoid. The other is death ineluctable; death the hunter who cannot in the end be escaped. Be a Man strong, or swift, or bold; be he wise or a fool; be he evil, or be he in all the deeds of his days just and merciful, let him love the world or loathe it, he must die and must leave it . . .”

Finrod: “And being thus pursued, have Men no hope?

Andreth: “They have no certainty and no knowledge . . . Hope, that is another matter, of which even the Wise seldom speak . . .”

Finrod:”. . . You see us, the Quendi, still in the first ages of our being, and the end is far off. As maybe among you death may seem to a young man in his strength; save that we have long years of life and thought already behind us. But the end will come. That we all know. And then we must die; we must perish utterly, it seems, for we belong to Arda . . . And beyond that what? ‘The going out to no return,’ as you say; ‘the uttermost end, the irremediable loss?’ . . .Our hunter is slow-footed, but he never loses the trail. Beyond the day when he shall blow the mort, we have no certainty, no knowledge. And no one speaks to us of hope.”


The sheer precision of balance between Andreth’s and Finrod’s words - the repeated rhythm, the echoed melody, the harmony of thoughts – this is what first spoke to my heart :love: . This......and also, I think, how Finrod seems to absorb all the bitterness and despair and anger flowing from Andreth and reflect it back towards her, changed, as understanding and hope and love. Her sorrow he does not, cannot, alter, perhaps because he too, knows, that “all tears are not an evil” and that he carries much the same burden himself. Sorrow and hope, love and loss; these are the bridge that spans the gulf between the two kindreds, built with words meant for the other and strengthened when recognized that they are also meant for oneself.

Well, there. I got that off my chest. At least most of it :halo: . Now I’ll prepare to jump back into the midst of that avalanche of ideas and start digging my way through to the light along with the rest of you. But not tonight. Tonight I’m going to read the last few pages of the Athrabeth yet again, and weep a little, yet again, and know that tomorrow, those “notes on the notes” will be waiting for me to reconsider, and other ideas will be waiting to become written words, and friends will be waiting, to build together a few bridges of our own. :hug:

I'm now trying for the third time to submit this....... :rage: Thank heaven I'm finally remembering to "copy" before I'm ready to click.....It's beginning to look like I'll have a better line of communication from Mexico in a few days...Ah well.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2005 4:45 pm 
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:love: :bawl: :love:

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2005 6:44 pm 
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I'm avoiding reading here until I have a chance to read the passage myself. I do have Morgoths Ring. It's the last volume that I own of HoME.

Sheesh, between the Silmarillion, Pride and Prejudice, Cuchulainn and now the Athrabeth I don't know when I'll have time to keep up with any of them!


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2005 8:07 pm 
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Hehe, yes, it's like Uni! I love it! :D
(Even though I can't keep up most of the time. ;) )
I've started reading the Athrabeth, and it's much different from what I expected. Well, maybe the stuff I expected is still to come. :)

Short question: I have another 8 pages to read till I get to a section "Notes", and after that it appears there's a commentary that is titled "Athrabeth...", too.
Is there anything new added to the text from the notes on, or would it be ok to just read to the end of the text proper before joining in here?

(Not that I don't want to read the whole thing, but I'd like to start reading the posts here ASAP, but of course not before I've read all of the relevant primary text!)

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but being a cheerful hobbit he had not needed hope, as long as despair could be postponed.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2005 9:02 pm 
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Sassafras wrote:
There is also this thought spoken by Andreth in which she tells of the old legends. And from the ensuing discussion, contemplation on the two natures of hope: The human way of Amdir or ‘looking up’ and the Elvish hope in it’s purest and most sacred form, Estel or ‘trust‘. A trust which requires, no, demands, faith concludes with a thinly veiled affirmation, a belief which no doubt requires Estel ... the belief in divine incarnation and redemption


What a tangled web we weave! This notion of the two natures of hope is, I believe, not quite what it appears at first glance.

Quote:
'Have ye then no hope? said Finrod.

'What is hope?' she said. 'An expectation of good, which though uncertain has some foundation in what is known? Then we have none.'

'That is one thing that Men call "hope",' said Finrod. 'Amdir we call it, "looking up". But there is another which is founded deeper. Estel we call it, that is "trust". It is not defeated by the ways of the world, for it does not come from experience, but from our nature and first being. If we are indeed the Eruhin, the Children of the One, then He will not suffer Himself to be deprived of His own, not by any enemy,k not even by ourselves. This is the last foundation of Estel, which we keep even we contemplate the End: of all his designs the issue must be for His Children's joy. Amdir you have not, you say. Does no Estel at all abide?'

'Maybe,' she said. "but no! Do you not perceive that itis part of our wound that Estel should falter and its foundations be shaken? Are we the Children of the One? Are we not cast off finally? Or were we ever so? Is not the Nameless the Lord of the World?'


:shudder:

And yet, amazingly, out of the depths of this despair, it is Andreth that provides the means unlooked for for Estel. She speaks (thought with bitter skepticism) of "those of the Old Hope" who say that "the One will himself enter into Arda and Heal Men and all the Marring." This is an idea completely new to Finrod. Her skepticism is rooted in the thought that if Eru is greater then that which He made, and that He therefore could not enter into it. Finrod responds that "These things are beyond the compass of the wisdom of the Eldar, or the Valar maybe." But his reservoir of faith (or "Estel" is so deep that he believes that "If Eru wished to do this, I do not doubt that He would find a way.

But now we come to the most extraordinary part:

Quote:
'Then, lord,' said Andreth, and she looked up in wonder, 'you believe in this Hope?'

'Ask me not yet,' he answered. 'For it is still to me but strange news that comes from afar. No such hope was ever spoken to the Quendi. To you only it was sent. And yet through you we may hear it and lift up our hearts.' He paused a while, and then looking gravely at Andreth he said: "Yes, Wise-woman, maybe it was ordained that we Qundi, and ye Atani, ere the world grows old, should meet and bring news one to another, and so we should learn of the Hope from you ... .'

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2005 9:13 pm 
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I'll have to reread the Athrabeth properly before trying to post anything more profound. But, on the Council of Elrond, we recently had some discussion about what the "unfallen state" of Man mentioned in it was. Here's my take on the matter:

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I understand the "unfallen state" as the state of humans before they lost the estel kind of hope, before Melkor made them believe that death is something to be afraid of. Humans themselves believed that they were originally immortal, but were made mortal as a punishment for something; think of the legend of the Fall - but, Tolkien himself didn't want to put such a legend in the story because it would have made it into "a parody of Christianity" (see the commentary and annotations to the Athrabeth).

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2005 10:41 pm 
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Rowan, you speak for me, as well! :)

There's something about the Adanel's tale taken as "factual history" that just doesn't "feel right" to me. It even doesn't feel right as the kind of "mythological history" we see in the Sil. There's......how shall I put it......a distinctively 'biblical' tone to it. Like Sassy said before, this seems like a more wrathful, "testing" God than I'm used to seeing in Tolkien's works (although the destruction of Númenor is, well, pretty darn extreme). And the thought that either Eru or Melkor could change the earthly fate of the bodies of Men, either as "punishment" or malicious subversion, just doesn't fit with what I've grown to expect of Tolkien's moral universe.

When I read the Athrabeth without considering all the subsequent commentaries, it seems to me that both Finrod and Andreth are speaking in "what if's" and "may have beens", rather than in words that mark that such things actually, factually happened. It's more an exercise of heart and mind: considering ideas never before thought, letting those thoughts connect to what is already "known", extrapolating "theories" based on the experience of (almost exclusively) the Eldar.

I'm not so sure that I like the tale of the Fall of Men or Finrod's conclusion of what "change' was wrought in the relationship between body and spirit for their kindred. Like Rowan, I would rather choose to believe that "the fall" is solely about the loss of estel, about the loss of certainty that the spirit (sorry, I don't have the patience with Tolkien's terms as I'm typing this under time constraints) will live on after the body, seeking its "home" beyond the circles of the world. That Melkor could cause such a loss, such a fall, is absolutely fitting, IMO. That Arda Marred would cause such a chain and burden to Men seems absolutely possible.

I don't know.........maybe because these tales of "long ages past" just don't fit with Tolkien's previous "time frame" of Men awakening at the rising of the Sun, they seem out of place. I just can't see how such a catastrophic change could happen, and recede into the dimmest memory (even for the Wise) within a couple of hundred years. :scratch:

Anyway, that's all I have time to post now. Hopefully, I'll be able add more later, although with the way my internet connection is going at the moment, it might be quite a bit later!

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2005 11:41 pm 
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Thanks Ath. Yes, I think I agree the 'Fall' is about the loss of estel.

You know, and in thinking more about the Athrabeth … I’m beginning to wonder if Tolkien is having the conversation with himself (which of course he is because he wrote it :D ) as a way to express both sides of the equation. As making an attempt to come to grips with the the quite negative view held by Andreth (representing modern as well as historical man) on the nature of Death as something to be feared… as a punishment, as Loss … and the other side of the coin, Finrod representing the Christian theological view of Death … not as a split between soul and body, as an ending but, in naked estel, of a Gain ... of something greater than what was before … of the healing which will mean more than just Arda Unmarred … ‘but a third thing, and greater’.

A kind of paradise where Quendi and Atani shall co-exist in harmony and delight.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2005 11:54 pm 
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And yet Finrod learns of "the Hope" from Andreth.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 01, 2006 12:28 am 
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Does he? Or does he already have the foreknowledge?

I think that he does although I think that the way (Eru entering Arda) this might be accomplished might indeed be a revelation to him.

Before Andreth speaks of 'the Old Hope' on page 321 (in my book), there is this from Finrod (page 318)

This then I propound was the errand of Men, not the followers, but the heirs and fulfillers of all: to heal the Marring Arda, already foreshadowed before their devising; and to do more, as agents of the magnificance of Eru: to enlarge the music and surpass the vision of the World!

For that Arda Healed shall not be Arda Unmarred, but a third thing, and a greater, and yet the same.


To me, this sounds as though he already understands that it is Men who will be the primary instruments in the playing of the final theme.

He goes on to ask of the Valar ... And now I wonder: Did they hear the end of the Music? Was there not something in or beyond the final chords of Eru, which being overwhelmed thereby, they did not perceive?

They did not; as we already know from the Ainulindalë .... it has been said that a greater still shall be made before Ilúvatar after the end of days. Then the themes of Ilúvatar shall be played aright, and take Being in the moment of their utterance, for all shall then understand fully his intent on their part, and each shall know the comprehension of each, and Ilúvatar shall give to their thoughts the secret fire, being well pleased.

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Ever mindful of the maxim that brevity is the soul of wit, axordil sums up the Sil:


"Too many Fingolfins, not enough Sams."

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 01, 2006 1:36 am 
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Sassafras wrote:
Does he? Or does he already have the foreknowledge?

I think that he does although I think that the way (Eru entering Arda) this might be accomplished might indeed be a revelation to him.

Before Andreth speaks of 'the Old Hope' on page 321 (in my book), there is this from Finrod (page 318)

This then I propound was the errand of Men, not the followers, but the heirs and fulfillers of all: to heal the Marring Arda, already foreshadowed before their devising; and to do more, as agents of the magnificance of Eru: to enlarge the music and surpass the vision of the World!

For that Arda Healed shall not be Arda Unmarred, but a third thing, and a greater, and yet the same.


To me, this sounds as though he already understands that it is Men who will be the primary instruments in the playing of the final theme.


But even this knowledge seems to come out Finrod's discourse with Andreth. Just before the passage you quote:

'But this is strange to me, and even as did yhour heart when I spoke of yhour unrest, so now mine leaps up as at the hearing of good news.

'This then, I propound ... .'

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2006 9:20 pm 
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I finished reading the Athrabeth today - only the mere text, that is, plus the few notes right afterwards. I began with reading the commentary, but wanted to come here first to give my impressions and hear what you guys had to say.

First, like I said in my previous post, I must say that I was surprised it was almost exactly the opposite of what I expected.
I knew it was about Finrod and a human woman talking about death and hope. As I thought that the Elves are rather desperate in that respect, because they don't expect to outlive Arda and fear to cease to exist altogether after that, and that Men expect a life after the end of Arda, I thought it would be the human explaining this hope to the Elf. As it turned out, it's basically the other way round.
I was quite shocked with Andreth's despair and bitterness. I was also very surprised at the argumentative tone this conversation at times takes on.

But I loved reading it very much. Even though I read slowly, because it's a lot of complex thoughts to take in, I completely agree with Ath on the beauty and readability of the text: it's a thrill to follow this conversation along!

Some more first impressions:
I must say, I was rather confused by the discussion about the fall of Men and Andreth's ideas that this was some wrong done them by the enemy. When Finrod asks her if there's nothing on their own conscience to explain this, she evades the question.
It's as though she's desperately trying to convince herself as much as others that there must have been some wrong done to them - she tries to completely repress the idea that either there was some fault of Men involved at all, or that they've never been deathless in the first place. She's clinging to this idea of having been the victim of some atrocity that, strangely, no one clearly remembers.
I was very moved by the later part of the story, where it was revealed that she had been rejected by her love (which btw opens a completely new subject of discussion, I think) - but even there you might say she insists on her victim-role so that she can go on being miserable, just like in the question of the wrong that was done to Men.

Basically, she does her utmost to refute all possibilities of hope that are handed her - it's as though she wants to remain in the darkness - while Finrod grasps at even the most unlikely rays of light, no matter how much beyond his understanding or, really (in the case of his looking on the bright side about Andreth's rejection by Aegnor), beyond what's reasonable (to me).

With my confusion about Andreth's views on the mythical wrongs of Men, I found what rowan said most enlightening!

Quote:
I understand the "unfallen state" as the state of humans before they lost the estel kind of hope, before Melkor made them believe that death is something to be afraid of. Humans themselves believed that they were originally immortal, but were made mortal as a punishment for something; think of the legend of the Fall - but, Tolkien himself didn't want to put such a legend in the story because it would have made it into "a parody of Christianity" (see the commentary and annotations to the Athrabeth).

That explains a lot to me! :)
There never was any marring of human nature, any imposition of death - the only thing Melkor took from them was "estel", not immortality. They always were the way they are now, but they have been talked into finding this a grievance!

(It's true, though, that this is far away from the Christian idea of the Fall, and I'm not sure it should be! So many other things are so close to it - but then, as rowan said, he might have wanted to avoid a close parallel - I guess I should read the commentary and notes ASAP :) )

Sassy wrote:
Andreth suggests that men lack even Admir …
[snip]
I suppose Admir is considered the lesser hope ...

It is the lesser hope, but that's why it would be the first to get lost, I think. So, I think you shouldn't say "they even lack Admir", it should be "they even lack Estel" - Admir may be easier to attain than Estel, because it's founded on reasonable expectation, but for that reason it's also more easily lost. So, when things look bleak, it is only reasonable to lose Admir, but Estel should remain.

Ah well, enough for now - but thanks for making me read this! :)

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Eine Blume der Asche meines Herzens


but being a cheerful hobbit he had not needed hope, as long as despair could be postponed.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2006 11:41 pm 
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Hobby wrote:
Quote:
It is the lesser hope, but that's why it would be the first to get lost, I think. So, I think you shouldn't say "they even lack Admir", it should be "they even lack Estel" - Admir may be easier to attain than Estel, because it's founded on reasonable expectation, but for that reason it's also more easily lost. So, when things look bleak, it is only reasonable to lose Admir, but Estel should remain.


Actually, I didn't say that the Atani lost Admir ... I said Andreth suggests that they lost hope ....those who left the lands of despair and the Men of darkness and journeyed west in vain hope:

I don't think that Men of Andreth's time ever had Estel since it, Estel, requires a naked trust and a belief that the Creater is wholly good and, as such, had their best interests at heart.

I think I disagree with you that Andreth played the victim in her unfulfilled love. To me her bewilderment is tragic and I find her concern for Aegnor's safety ...Tell him. Tell him not to be reckless. Not to seek danger beyond need! incredibly poignant.

Aegnor did not reject her, in fact, but he knew he must be dutiful and because he also had a forshadowing of his death ... he wished to spare her. Unknowingly he caused her more unhappiness by not confessing his love instead of leaving her with the memory of a few glorious days. Which probably says more about Elven charateristics than it does human. We would wish for consumation of our love, no matter how brief ... he, knowing there could be no future for them, chose to leave the words unspoken and the promises unfulfilled.

These final pages of the Athrabeth are among the most beautiful I have ever read. I can literally see Aegnor bright and tall, and the wind in his hair.

My heart goes out to Andreth.

:cry: :love: :cry:

Btw, Tolkien himself says of the Athrabeth it's real purpose is dramatic: to exhibit the generosity of Finrod's mind, his love and pity for Andreth, and the tragic situations that must arise in the meeting of Elves and Men.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 04, 2006 12:16 am 
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Sass wrote:
These final pages of the Athrabeth are among the most beautiful I have ever read. I can literally see Aegnor bright and tall, and the wind in his hair.


Oh, Sass..........so can I! :bawl: :love:

Hobby, I think what I find most poignant, (and believable actually) is that Andreth´s bitterness and loss is what is driving and feeding her perception of the cruelty of mortality, and the unbridgeable gap between Elves and Men. It´s because it´s so personal that it makes the grander theme of Death and Deathlessness much more accessable to me as a reader, just as the Tale of Aragorn and Arwen does.

Ack! Just as I finished typing that last sentence, my pre-bought internet time ran out. I´ll be back later with more thoughts.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 04, 2006 12:50 am 
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Quote:
Actually, I didn't say that the Atani lost Admir ...

No, that's not what I meant - what I was pointing out was that you said they didn't even have Admir - this means you take this to be the greatest hope, but in the next paragraph you said yourself that Admir is the lesser hope.

Quote:
I don't think that Men of Andreth's time ever had Estel since it

Indeed, because, as I learnt from rowan's post, Melkor took it from them!
I never said they had it.

Quote:
I think I disagree with you that Andreth played the victim in her unfulfilled love.

Again, no, I didn't mean to say she played the victim! That would mean she's pretending, lying!
What I tried to say was that she has internalised the role of the victim. She believes herself to be a victim in everything. She feeds her own bitterness by remembering how she is always the victim. She doesn't seem to want the hope Finrod offers her.
Personally, I think she is a victim when it comes to Aegnor's decision about her, but the point is that her stressing this just adds to the misery she feels about the fate of her people.

I totally agree with what you said about Aegnor's motivation (well, it's in the text ;) ) and my heart goes out to Andreth, too, more than you'd think, probably - but she still derives a lot of food for bitterness from this, and I thought it was remarkable how it even coloured her perceptions of the "bigger" theme - if she had not been unhappy in love, all her thoughts about the fate of Men might have been different.

Quote:
It´s because it´s so personal that it makes the grander theme of Death and Deathlessness much more accessable to me

Ack, pity your time ran out - I'd like to hear more on why it makes it more accessible to you, I don't think I understand that!

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Eine Blume der Asche meines Herzens


but being a cheerful hobbit he had not needed hope, as long as despair could be postponed.


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