The Silmarillion – A Beginner’s Guide – Part 14 (Of the Sun and Moon and the Hiding of Valinor)

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Movie Review: The Hobbit – The Battle of the Five Armies


‘You don’t really suppose, do you, that all your adventures and escapes were managed by mere luck, just for your sole benefit? …You are only quite a little fellow in a wide world after all!’

– Gandalf to Bilbo


I had the opportunity to see The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies today. Overall, I have found Jackson’s take on The Hobbit to be OK, which is pretty much what I expected. I was far more hopeful early on when Guillermo del Toro was on board to direct (Pan’s Labyrinth is amazing and beautiful and very Tolkienian). With del Toro, you had a proven fairy-story teller and director. With Jackson, you have a visual effects genius and a solid filmmaker with a flare for epic battle scenes. So for me, when I hear folks griping about all of the faults in Jackson’s second Middle-earth trilogy, I just have to say “What did you expect?”

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Concerning Tolkien’s “The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth”


When morning comes, it’ll be much like others:
more labour and loss till the land’s ruined;
ever work and war to till the world passes. (141)


Having closely examined “On Fairy Stories,” “Mythopoeia,” and “Leaf By Niggle,” I have found it somewhat puzzling that “The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth” is now included in the compilation Tree and Leaf. After all, the other three works, while differing in genre, are of a very similar theme: the nature of human creativity and its ultimate purpose. At first (and second and third) glances, it would seem “Beorhtnoth” has nothing to do with this theme. Is it an anomaly then? Why has it been added to Tree and Leaf?

Brythnoth statue Maldon.jpg
"Brythnoth statue Maldon" by Oxyman - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

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The Silmarillion – A Beginner’s Guide – Part 12 (Of the Flight of the Noldor)


“‘Tears unnumbered ye shall shed; and the Valar will fence Valinor against you…'” (88)


This post continues my chapter-by-chapter walkthrough of The Silmarillion. This time, I look at the ninth chapter of The Silmarillion proper, “Of the Flight of the Noldor.” You can see a list of all of the posts in this series by clicking here.

Nienna ©2010-2014 AlasseaEarello

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The Silmarillion – A Beginner’s Guide – Part 11 (Of the Darkening of Valinor)


“Soon the Holy Mountain stood alone, a last island in a world that was drowned.” (76)


This post continues my chapter-by-chapter walkthrough of The Silmarillion. This time, I will take a look at the eighth chapter of The Silmarillion proper, “Of the Darkening of Valinor.” You can see a list of all of the posts in this series by clicking here.

©2013-2014 AlasseaEarello

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The Silmarillion – A Beginner’s Guide – Part 10 (Of the Silmarils and the Unrest of the Noldor)


“Then Melkor lusted for the Silmarils, and the very memory of their radiance was a gnawing fire in his heart.” (67)


This post continues my chapter-by-chapter walkthrough of The Silmarillion. This time, I will take a look at the seventh chapter of The Silmarillion proper, “Of the Silmarils and the Unrest of the Noldor.” You can see a list of all of the posts in this series by clicking here.

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Leaf By Niggle – Tolkien’s Purgatorial Story


“They both laughed. Laughed – the Mountains rang with it!” (118)


“Leaf By Niggle” is, in my opinion, the greatest secret in Tolkien’s back catalog (you can find it in Tree and Leaf). It is a short tale, yet characteristically of Tolkien, it is dense with wisdom. I have to admit that it is one of those stories that can almost always reduce me to tears of joy, for the picture it paints of true happiness, of true blessedness, goes far beyond what a simple explanation of its themes could do. Yet I hope, all the same, to give a brief synopsis of it, in the hope that you will read it!

©2014 ejbeachy

By the way, for those of you who want to go deeper, we discuss “Leaf By Niggle” over two episodes of our Tolkien podcast. Check them out (pt 1 | pt 2). 

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The Silmarillion – A Beginner’s Guide – Part 9 (Of Fëanor and the Unchaining of Melkor)


But the Noldor took delight in the hidden knowledge that [Melkor] could reveal to them; and some hearkened to words that it would have been better for them never to have heard. (66)


This post continues my chapter-by-chapter walkthrough of The Silmarillion. This time, I will take a look at the sixth chapter of The Silmarillion proper, “Of Fëanor and the Unchaining of Melkor.” You can see a list of all of the posts in this series by clicking here.

©2012-2015 Gold-Seven

This chapter is really the quiet calm before the storm. All hell is about to break loose. Yet first, we must become acquainted with the great Fëanor, and also understand how Melkor comes once again to freedom. Continue reading “The Silmarillion – A Beginner’s Guide – Part 9 (Of Fëanor and the Unchaining of Melkor)”