The Middle-earth 1200

An exhaustive compilation of the characters of Tolkien's legendarium, in order of importance, by Dân o Nandor on Anduin
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Inanna
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Post by Inanna »

Wow. Very impressive indeed.

Dan, I have problems with your Nazgûl ranking.... and would love to discuss the same with you. Just running short of time...
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Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

Mahima wrote:Wow. Very impressive indeed.

Dan, I have problems with your Nazgûl ranking.... and would love to discuss the same with you. Just running short of time...
So you would have them at 1180-1185 instead of 1181-1186 (ahead of the Balrog of the Echoriath)? Since they are unnamed and unindexed, they can't be any higher, based on the standards Dan is using.
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Post by Frelga »

Húrin wrote:When I mentioned to my fifth grade daughter that you were posting this list of 1200 characters and that you would be including many animals including the famous Fox, she immediately said, "But what about the 'theoretical squirrel'?"
A theoretical squirrel sounds more like a Discworld animal than a Middle-earth one. :D

Impressive reasoning on the part of your daughter. And there I thought my son was a Tolkien geek.

Voronwë, I wonder if the Nazgûl should be higher on the list simply because they presumably have names, even though we don't know them, where a Balrog is just a specie-name.
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Post by Inanna »

Voronwë, I wonder if the Nazgûl should be higher on the list simply because they presumably have names, even though we don't know them, where a Balrog is just a specie-name.
There's that...

However, there is the notion of the centrality of the characters to the story. Shouldn't that be part of the criteria in an importance ranking?
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Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

Frelga wrote:Voronwë, I wonder if the Nazgûl should be higher on the list simply because they presumably have names, even though we don't know them, where a Balrog is just a specie-name.
I wouldn't disagree with flip-flopping the un-named Nazgûl with the Balrog (though presumably he too has a name that is not given, since we know that Gothmog lord of the Balrogs has a name). But I suspect that Mahima was suggesting that the Nazgûl be considerably higher on the list, and my point is that the list originally consisted of the 1179 indexed characters, and that therefore the 21 that Dan added would be definition have to be lower than those 1179. But hopefully Dan will speak for himself at some point. Meanwhile, it's fun to argue among friends. :)
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Post by Dân o Nandor on Anduin »

You have spoken very well indeed for me, V. I too might agree about the Ringwraiths (although some are critical of their inactions), but unfortunately it is an objective list, not a subjective one. Will it help if I told you the Lieutenant is top 200, and the Lord top 20?
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Post by solicitr »

Well, Dan,

I would consider as one "person" (whether a 'character' or not) Tolkien the living Oxford don and his slightly fictionalized self whenever his presence is explicit like the Narrator of The Hobbit or the Historian of the LR Prologue, or implicit, as the "translator" of the Red Book and other supposed primary texts.

I wouldn't count as "Tolkien" completely fictional characters who could be interpreted as avatars or alter egos because they share some of his views/personality/dreams like Faramir (or Gandalf), or the two Notion Club Rashbolds whose names it amused Tolkien to base on his own.
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Post by Dân o Nandor on Anduin »

His presence is explicit in The Hobbit? I question this. The Narrator is intrusive, and his presence regretted by Tolkien. I'd have a problem concluding, on my own, that this is unquestionably JRRT. Can you cite anything which may prove this, as well as link the other implicit translators?

Further, why would he write "Translator's note" when it is himself? The connection is certainly palatable at some level when a translator is implied, and moreless absent, in LotR. It loses strenght IMO when JRRT is writing of a Translator.

However, since The Hobbit Narrator is the only indexed persona of the kind (thus the sole representatioin here of JRRT), and since the Translator of Eriol was added by me, I'm considering replacing the latter(especially since similar questions were raised on another site).

So, if I open the voting to (1) the Translator of Eriol, (2) Elrond's theoretical squirrel , or (3) the unborn child of Túrin & Nienor, does anyone care to voice an opinion?
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Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

We could add a poll if you like, Dan.
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Post by solicitr »

Well, that was why I said "Tolkien the living Oxford don and his slightly fictionalized self." Sure the Narrator is intrusive, and Tolkien (much later) came to regret the style he used in The Hobbit: but nonetheless the Narrator is simply the print version of the voice of Tolkien the father, telling his boys stories in the study. The pretense that Middle-earth is real, and that the Storyteller has merely 'translated' ancient books, is all one with this pose.

And, yes, it is Translators who write Translator's Notes, just as it's Authors who write Author's Notes.
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Post by Dân o Nandor on Anduin »

Voronwë_the_Faithful wrote:We could add a poll if you like, Dan.
Not necessary, I think. I've already gotten a "without a doubt, the squirrel" vote elsewhere, which is my vote too. And you've won me over solicitr, changes edited next week, as long as you can tolerate the Hobbit Narrator appearing later (or JRRT appearing later, in the guise of the Hobbit Narrator, if you like), as he is indexed separately from JRRT the Oxford Don, believe it or not, by Rateliff. :)
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Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

The Hobbit narrator is definitely NOT Tolkien. I would strongly object to that characterization. It is most obviously a separate persona from him.
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Post by Dân o Nandor on Anduin »

I agree with you. The Hobbit Narrator is definitely staying, without strictly equating him with JRRT (but maybe a casual mention in the commentary). The question is whether to keep Eriol's Translator, an unindexed, but text-evidenced, inclusion on my part, or not. How would you cast your vote my friend? Out with the Translator, and in with the squirrel, or what? Either way this is not a big deal. :)
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Post by Dân o Nandor on Anduin »

narya wrote:Ah, I remember when this was just a list of 100! Looking forward to seeing the other 90% of the characters!
I will remind all - and thank you narya for everything - that the new list is quite different from the old! We have not only Rateliff, but Kane as well, adding to the mix. Even the top-10 has changed!! :)
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Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

Dân o Nandor on Anduin wrote: We have not only Rateliff, but Kane as well, adding to the mix.
Do you know, I actually missed that, even though I read the first post here, at TORN and at TORC? That's pretty cool, if I do say so.
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#s 1179-1169

Post by Dân o Nandor on Anduin »

First, an edit has been made (see above). There’s been some questions raised by stalwarts on 2 sites about my inclusion of the Translator of Eriol’s tales at #1187, both because he is (so they say) the same as The Hobbit Narrator (indexed by Rateliff, to come later), and that they are both, in essence, J.R.R. Tolkien. Though another stalwart, a Faithful One, has chimed in that there’s no way the Narrator of The Hobbit is JRRT (to which I agreed), I’ve made an executive decision: The Hobbit Narrator will stay, thereby representing all translators (if he’s JRRT, so be it); and the Translator of Eriol from the Lost Road will be removed since (1) he was an unindexed inclusion anyway, (2) he may very well represent JRRT, and (3) I’ve discovered a far better substitute!

So, full steam ahead. The next 6, I believe, are indexed by Scull & Hammond solely in recent editions of LotR. They get a point each.

#1179 the thinking Fox
Which is exactly how he's indexed: "Fox, thinking". Appropriately, the least of all indexed characters. “Well, what next... there’s something mighty queer behind this”.

#1178 Old Man at the Door of the Dead
“The way is shut. It was made by those who are Dead, and the Dead keep it, until the time comes.” Before acknowledgement of the S&H index, this guy was going to be an inclusion on my part, thanks to one N.E. Brigand’s suggestion. However, here he is legitimately, back from the dead, so to speak.

#1177 Hound of Sauron
This is the title in which Gandalf addresses the sole dark wolf (the 2nd on the list) that Legolas slays early in the night just before the great Warg-host attacks the Fellowship west of Moria.

#1176 Captain of the Haven at Umbar (at the time of Ecthelion II)
The way he is indexed, I might have overlooked this Corsair, since it refers merely to a title, not necessarily a character. However, the text is specific enough about an individual that is overthrown “in battle upon the quays” by Thorongil/Aragorn, to give him the nod for inclusion. The 1st of 3 southrons appearing!

#1175 Cave-troll of Moria that Frodo stabs
He didn’t spear Frodo in the text, but he’s still enough of a presence to warrant an index reference by S&H, unlike the orc-chieftain (back at #1194). The 1st of 5 trolls, and the 1st of 8 of the giant-class on the list.

#1174 Mr. Boffin of Overhill
The only one named (albeit just a last name) of the above 6, thus the last listed here. Hal Gamgee, of Ent-sighting fame (see #1198), worked for this businessman in Overhill.

#1173, #1172 the (right & left?) Silent Watchers of Cirith Ungol
They are the only 2 statues (sorry Argonath lovers), and the 1st of 6 stone/metal inanimate objects, to appear. The nature of their independent sentience may be called into question, but not enough to exclude them I deem. In fact they barely made it, as no points were awarded on this list for anything indexed in the plural (ie. Balrogs, Nazgûl, Two Trees, Silent Watchers). But at one time there was only 1 Silent Watcher (in HoMe’s LotR vols), therefore a viable indexed character that I split, including HoMe’s 2pts per index line.

The next are 3 of 6 unnamed female characters in UT indexed under their male counterparts (the 2nd half coming next week), and thus only awarded a point:

#1171 the daughter of Larnach
Here we have the 1st character of the story of Túrin Turambar. Following Túrin’s slaying of one of her rapists, “She looked at the blood and she looked at Túrin, and there was delight in her eyes. ‘Kill him, lord!’ she said. ‘Kill him too! And then come with me. If you bring their heads, Larnach my father will not be displeased. For two wolf-heads he has rewarded men well’.” Túrin responds, ‘Tell your father to keep you better. But I will not cut off the heads of my fellows to buy his favour, or aught else’. When Beleg questioned her later, she said ‘Very proud he was, with bright eyes that scarcely deigned to look at me. Yet he called the Wolf-men his fellows, and would not slay another that stood by’. I just couldn't resist reciting all of this!

#1170, #1169 the wives of Hunthor and Dorlas
They were willing to go with Nienor because their husbands were off with Túrin. Later Dorlas’ wife has some dialogue with Túrin, rebuffing Brandir: ‘Pay no heed to him, lord! For he is crazed. He came crying that you were dead, and called it good tidings. But you live’.

Next week, 15 Númenóreans...
Last edited by Dân o Nandor on Anduin on Thu May 06, 2010 2:20 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

What fun!
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#s 1168-1154

Post by Dân o Nandor on Anduin »

Here are the next 3 of UT’s 6 indexed daughters/wives (who only appear in their man’s entry):

#1168 Ulbar’s wife
Aldarion gave her “a jewel red like fire upon a band of gold... from the King of the Elves (Gil-galad)”, for her husband’s 6-year service abroad as one of his mariners. Ulbar was previously a shepherd, before joining the navy. She, “garlanded, was dancing with him to the playing of pipes” upon his return, before receiving the jewel.

#1167 Wife of Valandil
Her claim to fame, other than siring the line of all the Lords of Andúnië after the 1st (her husband), is sitting next to Erendis at a great feast, when Valandil names Aldarion’s wife a “Daughter of Uinen, the new Lady of the Sea”; to which Erendis responds, “Call me by no such name! I am no daughter of Uinen: rather is she my foe”.
#1166 Isildur’s wife
I said 15 Númenóreans, but I actually classified this one under Arnor Dúnedain, knowing very little about her except that she remained in Rivendell with her youngest son (another Valandil – born there), when Isildur left for the Last Alliance. To her, of course, he never returned.

The next 12 appear only on UT’s ‘Line of Elros’ family-tree, thus represent names only:

#1165 Nessanië eldest child of Hallatan of Hyarastorni
#1164 Írildë elder sister of Hallatan of Hyarastorni
#1163 Ardamir son of Axantur
#1162 Lindissë daughter of Axantur
#1161 Caliondo grandson of Tar-Amandil
#1160 Oromendil nephew of Tar-Amandil
#1159 Mairen daughter of Tar-Amandil
#1158 Aulendil 2nd son of Vardamir Nólimon
#1157 Vardilmë daughter of Vardamir Nólimon
#1156 Atanalcar son of Elros
#1155 Manwendil son of Elros
#1154 Tindómiel daughter of Elros

Next week begins the 100+ characters attaining only 2 points...
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Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

Dân, would you be willing to post the exact formula that you used to calculate the number of points each entry got?
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Post by Dân o Nandor on Anduin »

Next week's post will be a good place to do just that, I think.
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