TheSilmarillionWriters'Guild

Newsletter: August 2014

Table of Contents


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SWG News

Akallabêth in August

It’s August again and it’s time to revisit Númenor and the Second Age. We are lucky to have in our Archive wonderful stories about this most fascinating period of the history of Arda. If you’re in need of enjoyment or inspiration, check out one of the many Second Age stories already on our Archive. In 2009, we hosted a special event focused on the Akallabêth. Read the 2009 Akallabêth in August collection here.

Each year, we put together a list of Second Age stories, poems, and essays appearing on our Archive. If you've archived a Second Age story and it's missing from the list, please let us know at moderator@silmarillionwritersguild.org, and we will correct the list. Read the list of Second Age stories in our Akallabêth in August section below.

Silmarillion Re-Reading

This month we will be re-reading and discussing and recommending the following chapters:

August 10: "Of the Coming of Men into the West"
August 24: "Of the Ruin of Beleriand and the Fall of Fingolfin"

During the month of July, we covered three chapters in the re-reading:

"Of Beleriand and Its Realms
"Of the Noldor in Beleriand"
"Of Maeglin"

Don’t hesitate to join in. All opinions and viewpoints are welcomed, and you can jump into the discussion at any time--there are no deadlines. To catch up with the previous discussions, visit the "silmarillion reread" tag on our LiveJournal.

Our Most Successful International Day of Femslash Ever!

This year, the SWG again participated in the International Day of Femslash, on July 19. This year we had our best response ever! If you missed reading this year's stories, find our contribution to the 2014 International Day of Femslash here.

Happy Birthday, SWG!

At the end of July, the Silmarillion Writers' Guild turned nine years old. The moderation team would like to thank all of our members who have made those nine years possible!

Welcome to Our New Members!

We welcome the six new members who have joined the Silmarillion Writers’ Guild since our last newsletter: Persefone88, Feanor, Dusk Felagund, irvinglegend, Writing Gecko, and ohdearlings.

Most likely you have already found your way around our site and begun reading, reviewing, or posting at the archive, but if you are still exploring you may wish to browse our Frequently Asked Questions.

Baffled about what is considered Silmfic, or about what this site is about? No need to be--we want the SWG to be a friendly place for all members! Our rules are few and simple; read our Site Etiquette and Terms of Service for more information.

If you wish to share what awoke your interest in The Silmarillion, or brought you to our site, or any other facts about your fandom persona, why not your update your bio? And anytime you need assistance, please contact us at moderator@silmarillionwritersguild.org.


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New at the Archive

Completed Works

A Gathered Cloak by Elisif (1344 words)
Summary: Lalwen and a friend become lovers.

All Our Griefs Forgiven by Elleth [Teens] (2938 words)
Summary: After the War of Wrath the reconciliation of the Noldor and Teleri draws near, but matters are complicated by the love of Eärwen and Anairë.

Always There by Writing Gecko [General] (1973 words)
Summary: A young Elladan and Elrohir return from playing by the sea with a strange tale that sends their father on a mad chase.

At the River's Edge by Elisif [General] (1475 words)
Summary: Finduilas and Niënor survive and take refuge at the Havens.

Down by the Hallowed Pool by Elleth [Adult] (3731 words)
Summary: After rescuing the Hobbits from the Barrow-downs, Tom Bombadil takes a blue brooch from the pile of barrow-treasures to bring to Goldberry, reminiscing about its bearer. This is her story. For International Day of Femslash 2014.

Of Wonders Wild and New by oshun [Teens] (2222 words)
Summary: A story of Galadriel and Luthien in Doriath, early First Age. Written for International Day of Femslash 2014. Many thanks to Ignoble Bard for the rush Beta of this.

Seabirds Winging West by Astris [Teens] (4396 words)
Summary: Lúthien lives with Beren as an immortal until his time runs out. Someone's been waiting, of course, and is there to catch her when she starts falling apart. Or when she gets into fights with Orcs. (AU: Beren didn't die, meaning there was no trip to Mandos, meaning Lúthien is still immortal.) For the International Day of Femslash.

Works in Progress

Assault to Abjury by Agelast [Teens]
Summary: Maedhros defied his father only once. AU.
Chapter added this month: Chapter 1

Atanatari: Of the Three Houses of the Edain by Himring [Author Chooses Not to Rate]
Summary: A collection for stories about the Edain. First story: Carved in the Mind (Turin tells Finduilas how he made friends with Sador).
Chapter added this month: A Hard Time for Healing.

Bloody Silmarils, book 1 by Dilly [Teens]
Summary: In Gondolin, Turgon is depressed... A Silmarillion parodic story in the way of the tv-show Kaamelott and the Monty Python's Holy Grail. This is the translation of the french fanfiction "Maudits Silmarils".
Chapter added this month: Women's rights.

Many Journeys by Elleth [Teens]
Summary: A gathering place for ficlets of varying length centered around the House of Fëanor (and lately, the House of Finwë in general), based on the word of the day from dictionary.com and various other prompts..
Chapter added this month: Patience and Quiet, Resolve, Counsels of the Weak and Not on Hope Alone.

Maudits silmarils, livre 1 by Dilly [Teens]
Summary: A Gondolin, Turgon déprime... Une parodie crack du Silmarillion façon Kaamelott.
Chapters added this month: Aubeline and La vie sexuelle des elfes.

Summer's End by oshun [Teens]
Summary: This is really not a love story, although it is centered upon the relationship of Maedhros and Fingon and told from their points of view. It is more a personal exploration of the politics of the exiled Noldor in the early days of establishing their kingdoms in Middle-earth. For the Noldor, the personal is always political. There is humor, conflict, scandal, and a crazy mixture of discord and affection, which characterize the Finweans. It has plenty of self-indulgent evidence of my rather romanticized obsession with the glorious princes of the Noldor (male and female). This story is set in an amorphous, vague time frame shortly before the founding of Nevrast, before the Mereth Aderthad. Written for Sultry in September fic swap for Burning_Nightingale, who requested Maedhros/Fingon among other characters. The story elements, which I am trying to provide are: "Angst or fluff (or both), either something plot-driven or character study. Optional ideas I would be interested to see include; something to do with horses, a piece of jewellery featured, something incorporating a major canon event, something about a journey in the wilderness, something about the beauty of nature, a battle or fight."
Chapter added this month: Warmth Is Behind Us, Cold Lies Ahead.

The Untrodden Path by Makalaure [General]
Summary: In the Years of the Trees, an adolescent Finrod feels an inexplicable pull towards his singular cousin, Maglor, and learns a bit more about himself.
Chapter added this month: Chapter 1.

Trinkets by Independence1776 [Teens]
Summary: A collection of drabbles and ficlets too short to post on their own. Each story has a separate rating.
Chapter added this month: Sunrise.

Short Works

All Mustn't Fail or Falter by Elleth [Teens] (883 words)
Summary: A collaboration between alackofghosts and yours truly for the International Day of Femslash, featuring art and fic: Aerin comforts a grieving Morwen after news of the Nirnaeth Arnoediad reaches Dor-lómin.

Luthien's spell by Dilly [Teens] (226 words)
Summary: It was notorious, in Doriath, that Lúthien’s beauty was so powerful than her charms were able to cross the usual lines... Drabble.

Pyrrhic Wedding: Loss All Around by Himring [Teens] (731 words)
Summary: The future of her ladies-in-waiting becomes a counter in the marital conflict between Tar-Ancalime and her estranged husband Hallacar. Hallacar shames Tar-Ancalime into permitting them to marry. We are allowed to assume that they all were unreservedly grateful for this opportunity. But were they? Now added: A second chapter from Ancalime's POV for the International Day of Femslash: Loss All Around.

The fall of the Noldor by Silver Trails [General] (896 words)
Summary: Vairë and Namo mourn the fall of the Noldor

Poetry

The Sweet Bard by Makalaure [General] (145 words)
Summary: A stranger's first impression of Maglor.


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Akallabêth in August

Second Age Writing Archived on the SWG

We know that our Second Age writers sometimes fall in the shadow of the more popular First Age and Years of the Trees. Because of that, we like to devote the month of August to stories set in the Second Age. Of course, we encourage our members to try their hands at Second Age stories, even if they've never written about the Second Age before. But we also like to honor the existing Second Age stories on our archive and hope that readers will consider checking out a few of them! All links go to the story's table of contents, where you can learn more details about genre, ratings, and characters.

We try to do our best to assure that all Second Age work makes it onto the list, but in the midst of sorting through more than 1,900 stories, sometimes a few get left off. If you see a story that's missing from the list, please contact us and we'll add it! Stories marked with an asterisk were added or updated within the last year.

Admission by SurgicalSteel
Zamîn and Nemir (two of my OCs) meet after the Last Alliance and discuss their losses.

Alliance by SurgicalSteel
Míriel considers her options to avert civil war in Númenor as she prepares for her father's funeral.

All Else Lost by Keiliss
In a changed world there was one thing that remained untouched by time or distance.

All Our Yesterdays by Keiliss
The Last Day.

Anadûnai by darthfingon
163 years after their parting in Middle-earth, Elrond travels to Númenor to see his brother again.

*The Anatomy of Orcs by MisbehavingMaiar
An academic essay composed by an unnamed Numenorian naturalist; (an open-minded lady of the court of Ar-Adûnakhôr) concerning the biology and habits of Orcs. (Illustrated)

The angel that came from the West by ford_of_bruinen
A poem about the elven smiths of Eregion and the making of the Dwarf rings.

*Annatar's triumph by Dilly
Annatar thoughts after Celebrimbor's death. Ficlet, english and french.

The Apprentice by pandemonium_213
An ambitious young Noldorin man of Ost-in-Edhil lands a coveted appointment as an apprentice to the most skilled master smith of the Gwaith-i-Mirdain: Istyar Aulendil. The apprentice's mentor, a prodigy of the Aulënossë, has been sent to Middle-earth by the Valar and has knowledge of exotic and wondrous technology. Istyar Aulendil also has notoriously high standards. The apprentice must meet his mentor's expectations if he is to become a journeyman and work on an important new initiative.

*Approaching Rivendell by Winterwitch
Summary: 100 drabbles with Elrond Half-Elven through the ages, focussing on the creation of and the living in Rivendell.

Allies by Silver Trails
Elrond tries to stop Thranduil from leaving the council before the last battle against Sauron.

The Army of the North by darthfingon
The armies of the Last Alliance gather in Rivendell to prepare for their assault on Mordor. Elrond worries, Oropher weasels, and nothing goes according to plan.

The Art of Long-Distance Grandparenting by Kaz
Why did Glorfindel return to Middle-earth? Maybe the Valar decided they needed a messenger. Maybe he felt he still had something to do there and begged them to let him return. Or maybe it went something like this...

It's the early Second Age and Idril is worried about her grandsons. In the course of this she waylays new arrivals to Valinor, tries to find her footing with her own grandmother, schemes with Tuor, Finrod and Glorfindel, and finally sets a plan into motion.

Atalantë by Dwimordene
Always read between the lines.

Aldarion, the Guild of Venturers, OCs, political economy. Inspired by the "Arda Underground" challenge, but could probably also pass for the "Fanon Inverted" challenge.

The Axes of a Soul by wind rider
The last survivor of the drowning Númenor reflects on herself, her life and her decisions as she struggles to avoid certain death. What will she get in the end? Does she dare to face it like the proud daughter of the Island that she is?

The Ban of the Valar by Fiondil
The Valar meet to discuss how to prevent the Númenóreans from seeking the Undying Lands.

The Beginning by oshun
Extended drabble on the theme of Elrond and Gil-galad.

Bedtime Tales of the Sun by Dawn Felagund
A young daughter in the House of Anárion asks how the world came to be rounded.

*The Birds of the Temple Garden by Huinare
Mairon kickstarts the new Cult of Melkor in Armenelos. What does one do with inept acolytes, heretics, and abandoned gardens?

The Book of Short Tales by Lyra
A place to store short stories, ficlets and challenge responses that don't really warrant being archived on their own.

Broken by Keiliss
Maglor has his sources.

Broken Star by pandemonium_213
Sauron's last request of Celebrimbor. A double drabble epilogue of sorts to Cat's Paws.

Brothers by Dawn Felagund
Two brothers face their father's death and the differences that have arisen between them, for one is of the King's Men and the other of the Elf-friends.

Burning Bright: The Road by Keiliss
The outbreak of war in Eregion and the hiding of the rings of power as experienced by a musician, a lord with an agenda set beyond the sea, an exiled Noldorin princess and an elf with an uneasy conscience. Cameos by Durin the Deathless, Ereinion Gil-galad, Celebrimbor, and Annatar the Giver of not always welcome Gifts...

Cat's Paws by pandemonium_213
Tyelperinquar/Tyelpo (Celebrimbor) and Aulendil (Annatar/Sauron) discuss brotherhood and the secret of the deep arts on an early summer evening in Ost-in-Edhil.

Character Biography: Erendis, the Mariner's Wife by oshun

Character Biography: Tar-Aldarion by oshun

Character Biography: Thranduil by Scarlet10

Character Biography: Vëantur by oshun

Chasing Mirages by Russandol
A tale of darkness, light, love and betrayal over the Ages of Eä.

"When Thangorodrim was broken and Morgoth overthrown, Sauron put on his fair hue again and did obeisance to Eönwë the herald of Manwë, and abjured all his evil deeds. And some hold that this was not at first falsely done, but that Sauron in truth repented, if only out of fear..." This is the story of Eönwë, Maia of Manwë, and Mairon Aulendil after the War of Wrath.

The Choice by Ithilwen
A conversation between a pair of brothers, reflecting on the choices they've made in their lives. Takes place near the beginning of the Second Age.

Choices by Silver Trails
Gil-galad and Elrond speak about Maglor.

Chronicles of the Fifth Voyage of the Númerrámar: The Loremaster Arrives by pandemonium_213
Before he became Tar-Aldarion, Anardil, Tar-Meneldur's heir, sailed far and wide on the great ship, the Númerrámar. Before Captain Anardil embarks on his seven year voyage, a young loremaster writes to him, eager to accompany captain and crew in search of strange flora and fauna. In letters exchanged prior to the voyage, Captain Anardil discovers that the loremaster has some unusual ideas.

Coda by Marta
After the fall of Numenor, Nienna ponders the nature of loss. (Also featuring Pengolodh.)

The Consuming Darkness by Isil Elensar
It is written that Tar-Miriel was too late to reach the supposed safety of the Meneltarma when Numenor sank into the sea. But why was she late? What was so important that she would risk her life, knowing she would not survive?

*The Crossroads of Eriador by Kitt Otter
So a shipwright, a high-king, and a seriously miffed Galdor walk into a bar ...

*Crowns of Holly by Kitt Otter
Gil-galad and Círdan attend mid-summer festivities in Eregion. An unwelcome guest crashes the party.

Cultural Differences by Keiliss
Cultural differences, a young king, an arrogant Maia, and rather too much wine.

Dark Ships by Erurainon
A lamentation for The Doom of Men by a Bard of Numenor

*Darkness by Silver Trails
Oropher mourns the death of his wife.

*Day's End by Elisif
At the end of his life, Elros recieves an unanticipated visitor.

The Day the Numenoreans Left by Aiwen
Pharazôn and Amandil's diplomatic mission to Middle-earth may do more harm than good ...

The Death of a Star by Encairion
Isildur got a little too much credit for Sauron's defeat. A look at Dagorlad from Gil-galad's POV.

Defiance by Marta
Of all the Valar, Ulmo arguably knew the Numenoreans best and it was his waves that were used in their destruction. What must he have thought about the Akallabeth?

The Departure by Keiliss
Departure, to be followed by a return.

*Deterioration by Astris
The fall of Númenor: a soldier of the King in the Caves of the Forgotten, slowly losing his mind. (Indirectly about how terrible the Valar are.)

The Downfall by Marta
"Nine ships there were: four for Elendil, and for Isildur three, and for Anarion two; and they fled before the gale out of the twilight of doom into the darkness of the world. [...] And all the coasts and seaward regions of the western world suffered great change and ruin in that time; for the seas invaded the lands, and shores foundered."

Downfallen by pandemonium 213
Sauron recounts the first human sacrifice in the temple of Armenelos.

Dual Number by Acharion
We all know about the twins Elladan and Elrohir. But what about the other twins in Middle Earth? Erestor has encountered not one, but four sets of twins while serving the Noldor: The sons of Fëanor, Dior, Eärendil, and Elrond.

The Eastern Sea (III) by Gadira
Part III of the Númenor Seas series, for the Sea Voyage challenge. Yehimelkor, the last High Priest of Melkor, stares at the sea thar robbed him of a loved one and bears his fate proudly.

Elegy for Númenor - Volume 1: Journey to Umbar by elfscribe
Chronicles the last days of Númenor from the time Sauron "surrenders" to Ar-Pharazôn to the fall of the empire.

The Elendilmir by pandemonium_213
A young child of Men befriends Sámaril, the troubled master smith of Imladris. The Noldorin craftsman experiences the joy and pain born of friendships between the Eldar and mortal Men and comes to question his people’s values as his life becomes entwined with Isildur’s youngest son and two powerful women of the Dúnedain. A sequel to The Apprentice.

Elfstone by Gandalfs apprentice
Celebrimbor creates the Elessar.

*The Embalmer's Apprentice by Lyra
Faced with the choice between execution or working on the preservation of dead people, young Azruhâr finds himself drawn into the increasingly political struggle between progress and tradition, science and superstition.

Embers by Elleth
Elleth's stories, drabbles and double-drabbles for Seven in '07 and B2MeM 2008. Please refer to the chapter summaries for further info.

*Emotions-- A series of vignettes by MisbehavingMaiar
A study in sentiments over time; a collection of moments surrounding Melkor and Sauron, from the Spring of Arda to the fall of the Third Age.

Eönwë Among the Edain by Fiondil
Eönwë has been chosen to teach the Edain who will go to Númenor what they need to know to succeed in their new life, but he’s not too happy about the assignment.

Erendis: A Love Story by oshun
A more intimate recounting of aspects of the story of Erendis and Aldarion. Third chapter is posted now.

Even Quicker Than Doubt by Keiliss
Set in the weeks before Elros departs for Númenor, Doubt explores the reason the twins chose different paths, Elrond’s emotional coming of age, the evolving relationship between Gil-galad and Glorfindel, and the reborn Elf’s adjustment to his new life in Second Age Lindon.

Everlasting Darkness by Cirdan
A depressing tale. Celebrimbor ponders his life just before Sauron begins his attack on Eregion.

Every Wish by Independence1776
Mestië, a Faithful commoner, prepares for her wedding while dealing with Ar-Gimilzôr’s new laws forbidding the speaking of Elvish.

Factions by Marta
Isildur's theft of the fruit of the White Tree, from a different perspective.

Falling Stars by Independence1776
Mestië and Alagos suffer the consequences of breaking Ar-Gimilzôr’s laws. Dark.

Fall of Sauron by xxxVilda
Sauron the bad guy was good in the end, wasn't he? A take on Sauron's kin's feelings about his fall.

Fame to Fill the Void by mangacrack
Everything I'll never ever tell you.

The Far Side of the World by SurgicalSteel
During the reign of Tar-Ancalime, a group of Numenorean mariners find something that surprises and alarms them in their explorations.

Finrod's Rematch by Cirdan
Finrod shows up and challenges Sauron to a very different kind of rematch at the end of the Second Age.

Fire and Smoke by Marta
"Thereafter the fire and smoke went up without ceasing; for the power of Sauron daily increased, and in that temple, with spilling of blood and torment and great wickedness, men made sacrifice to Melkor." (Akallabeth)

Five Things That Never Happened to Sauron by Russandol
Five short scenes with a twist, in five different locations. Each of them harder to write than the previous one!

*Flawed yet Precious by Khaosity
The life story of a certain fallen Maia, told from his perspective. Dark, or rather will be.

Folly by SurgicalSteel
Could the downfall of Númenor have been prevented had the Valar acted differently?

Footnote to the Akallabeth by clotho123
The results of the Downfall, from the point of view of the Noldor in Aman. Semi-serious.

The Forging of the Ring by Uvatha the Horseman
Sauron forges the Ring

Forsaken Knowledge by Rhapsody
In order to finish one of his greatest achievements, Celebrimbor applies a skill he considered forgotten.

A Fragile Chalice by pandemonium_213
In spite of weariness and stress, Tyelperinquar (a.k.a. Celebrimbor) hosts a gathering in his home: a supper followed by what we might call a salon for the elite of Ost-in-Edhil. Musicians, rival poets, and lively conversation among the guests, which includes Erestor, the visiting emissary from Gil-galad's realm, provide the evening's entertainment. An elven poetry slam causes Tyelpo to become immersed in deep memories -- some poignant, some painful, and one dark and strange yet vaguely familiar.

Full of Wisdom and Perfect in Beauty by Gadira
The History of the Downfall, from Ar-Sakalthôr´s accession to Ar-Pharazôn´s Armada.

A Game of Chess by Uvatha the Horseman
Sauron went to Umbar wearing the Ring, not expecting to be captured and taken to Númenor. How did the Ring get back to Barad-dûr?

A Game of Risk by Lyra
Isildur said no word, but went out by night and did a deed for which he was afterwards renowned.

Isildur discovers that heroic deeds are not nearly as simple as the poets make it sound.

The Great Divide by ALark
The Avari of Taur Romen find themselves caught in the turmoil of the Third age just before the War of the Ring gets in full swing. In ages passed they were able to avoid the conflict between Sauron and the Free Peoples of Middle Earth,but that time is long past. the War of the Ring is on the horizon, leaving their leader, Hensilien, only one ultimatum: solicit the help of their kin in the west of whom they have habored resentment for since the First Sundering or watch their forest die at the hands of the shadow and count down to their own annihilation by the forces of Sauron.

The Hidden Lady by Rhapsody
Many scribes and bards have claimed that the Valar spared Elendil and his sons, but what is fact and what is myth?

A high-king on his death. by ford_of_bruinen
Gil-Galad after his death...

His Own Dark Designs by Independence1776
Ar-Pharazôn begins to worship Morgoth. Drabble.

Hospitality by Russandol
A man with a perilous mission arrives at the shores of Númenor, where he meets two strangers. A (most likely AU) crossover between my own Chasing Mirages and elfscribe's novel Elegy for Númenor.

Hostage by SurgicalSteel
Ar-Pharazon takes Sauron as a hostage for the good behavior of his people.

*"The House of a Friend" & other drabbles by Himring
The friendship of Narvi and Celebrimbor:Narvi and Celebrimbor work on the Doors of Moria--and other scenes.

How the East Was Won by pandemonium_213
During the earliest years of the Second Age, Melkor’s great lieutenant puts the destruction of Beleriand behind him and travels to the East...with a plan.

*In Amon Lanc by Silver Trails
King Amdir visits King Oropher in Amon Lanc during the Second Age.

*Industry by mistrali
Erendis is kept busy.

In Lindon by Silver Trails
While they wait for news from Eregion, Erestor helps Gil-galad to relax.

In the Interest of Historical Accuracy by Duilwen
In Eregion in the mid-Second Age, an ambitious young scholar sets out to understand the last remaining followers of the House of Fëanor.

Into Exile by Aiwen
Elendil's arrival in Middle Earth, and his first meeting with the Elves.

Into This Wild Abyss by pandemonium_213
A series of contributions for Akallabêth in August 2009 in response to the following prompts: 1) Sauron fortifies Mordor; 2) Sauron begins to afflict Númenórean settlements to the south; 3) Sauron convinces Ar-Pharazôn to break the Ban of the Valar; 4) storms from the West strike Númenor; and 5) Sauron returns to Middle-earth.

The Jinn by pandemonium_213
While leading his tribe into the deep desert to escape the inevitable war between the Zigûr and the Sea-kings, Sharif finds a woman -- injured and unconscious -- among the rocks. He discovers this is not a mortal woman, but one of the pale-skinned immortal demons of the north. He is ready to kill her, but the tribe's priestess stays his hand, warning him that slaying the jinn would bring terrible misfortune to his tribe. His wives care for the jinn, who recovers and aids the tribe as they journey to the East in search of a mysterious land where they hope to find sanctuary, the jinn no less than Sharif and his tribe as she flees from the Zigûr.

A Kingly Gift by Russandol
Ten years of faithful service are rewarded. A double drabble.

A gift for elfscribe on her 10th Fandom Anniversary.

Lalwen's Box by Silver Trails
Erestor dreams of a possible future.

Landfall by Keiliss
Aftermath.

The Land of Gift by Gadira
On the final fate of Tuor and Idril, and the roots of certain important events of the Second Age.

Last Alliance by Isil Elensar
For a few moments in time, a soldier in the Last Alliance remembers the woman he left behind.

The last farewell of you and me by ford_of_bruinen
Elrond's and Elros' last meeting.

The Last Queen by Gadira
The cliché setting for the Downfall of Númenor... or maybe not so much?

The Last Whose Realm Was Fair and Free by Dwimordene
Gil-galad was an Elven King. We all know what this means, right?

Political economy does Second Age Elven (and other) kingdoms. Features Gil-galad, Galadriel, Celeborn, Celebrimbor, and Aldarion, primarily. Gives the other side, in a way, of Atalantë.

The Last Temptation (Rewritten) by Fireworks
Sauron has been taken prisoner by Pharazôn but nurtures an ever-growing influence. In the midst of a Númenor increasingly divided, a young Anárion works quietly after rebellion, discovering both love and betrayal in its midst.

Lending a Hand - Redux by Erulisse
I wanted this to be sharper and to explain Isildur's feelings towards the elves with greater clarity. So I refined this a bit more. This is what I came up with. What thoughts are passing through Isildur’s mind after his defeat of Sauron? A bit of gallows humor in response to the prompt “lend”.

Lesion by pandemonium_213
Something is rotten within the heartwood of Nimloth.

Likeness by Agelast
They share a marvelous likeness. (Celebrimbor/Annatar, and all that entails.)

*Lighter than Vanity by Agelast
From the birth of Annatar to the seduction of Celebrimbor.

A Little More Conversation by Keiliss
A story told through letters of the friendship that grows between Glorfindel, sent to take charge of the newly-discovered valley of Imladris, and Erestor, an assistant to one of Gil-galad's military advisors.

A Lonely Bride by Alquawende
Erendis regrets her actions toward her husband and daughter.

*The Lonely Isle by sithisit
of the invasion and downfall of Tol Eressëa

Lord of Gifts by lindahoyland
Sauron has plans for the future.

*The Lords That Fell by Taylor17387
Tells the story of the rise and fall of the two dark lords, from the collapse of the fortress in Tol-in-Gaurhoth, to the collapse of Barad-dûr, and what came next. Mainly told from Melkor and Sauron's perspective. Continuation of my other fic: "The Burnt God", though it may be read separately. Occasional slash.

Lost Home by Silver Trails
Gil-galad stops Gildor from leaving the Isle of Balar.

Many Journeys by Elleth
A gathering place for ficlets of varying length written in response to prompts, prods and as gift ficlets.

The Man Who Grew Tomatoes by pandemonium_213
Navin, a young boy living in a mystical land in the East of Middle-earth, a civilization as rich in lore and magic as any in the West, visits family friends while his mother prepares to give birth to a new sister or brother. There in the hills, Navin helps his elderly friend in his garden and later, his friend -- a man from a distant land now gone -- tells Navin the story of how tomatoes came to Bharat.

Many Hands by Russandol
The story of a mighty weapon and heirloom, spanning the younger ages of the world.

The Mariner's Wife by Odinsbard
The lament of Erendis, after Aldarion Prince of Numenor rideth hence from Erendis' country-home when returning from a long journey; and she realises what hath truly become of life. It is written in 1st person as Erendis speaking and thus neither of their names are actually mentioned.

Written in alliterative verse, after the style of the ancient Anglo-Saxon metres...

Mavoinë by Fiondil
On a lonely hill overlooking Andúnië, an Elf watches his mortal friend build a tower and is filled with grave misgivings as to its purpose.

The Men Who Would Be Kings by SurgicalSteel
In the late Second Age, a merchant from Belfalas comes to an agreement with new arrivals from downfallen Numenor.

Midwinter Sweetness by ford_of_bruinen
These are two different stories, the first one was a Christmas tale for Christmas 2004 and retells the Christmas Story in a Second Age setting.

A Mighty Bridge Invisible by Noliel
A mariner finds himself, alone, on the Old Road to the West.

Moon of the Sea by pandemonium_213
There are any number of unnamed women in Tolkien's canon who surely played important roles behind the scenes. One of these women is Elendil's wife, the mother of Isildur and Anárion. She figures as a supporting character in my WIP, The Elendilmir, but this strong woman is taking on a life of her own. So, to keep the bunnies from gnawing my ankles raw, I have been writing ficlets about Isilmë, some of which may blossom into full-fledged stories in the future.

*Moving Forward by StarSpray
A drabble series written for Tolkien Weekly's "Trees" challenge, centered around the beginning of the Second Age.

Never Look Back by Independence1776
Elrond has difficulty coming to terms with Elros' choice and their impending seperation.

The Night the Sea Came In by Keiliss
After Beleriand is broken and drowned, the elves on Balar have little choice but to set out in search of a safe haven. Prophecy by Galadriel, leadership by Gil-galad and Cirdan, music by Lindir, off-screen lunacy by Erestor and Gildor.

The Northern Sea (I) by Gadira
Vignette based on Full of Wisdom and Perfect in Beauty. Alissha, entombed in her prison, surrenders to desperation.

No title yet. by ladyoflight
Written to cheer up JDav/JDE who is going through a tough time in RL. Pairing: Gil-Galad/Elrond.

Oath Renewed by Inglor
Narsil was 3000 years old before it came to Elendil, how did he get it?

*Of Anbor And Azruphel by gamil-zirak
A tale of romance between a wild man of Middle earth and a lady of Numenor, told with the epic backdrop of the last 2 years of Numenor. A study in the politics and relations of the time. Hope you enjoy it!

Of Numenor That Was by Marta
The story of the last sacrifice offered to Morgoth by Numenor, told in four true drabbles from the perspectives of four OCs.

Of Sauron and the Lesser Rings by Anlashaq
To an old Friend.

*The Old Eagle by Agelast
In Númenor, Elros tells his children a tale from his long-ago childhood. Written for B2MeM 2014.

One more minute by ford_of_bruinen
Another poem about Gil-Galad following his death.

Orcling by pandemonium_213
During a Second Age equivalent of a natural history "field trip" in the upper Vale of the Glanduin River, a young Mélamírë finds her father's penchant for turning everything into a lesson to be stifling. Taking advantage of Father's unexpected nap, she sets off on a little expedition of her own, intending to return by sunset. However, she makes a discovery that turns what she intended as an afternoon's adventure into something far more harrowing and that challenges what she has been taught.

Rated Teen/PG13 equivalent for moderate violence; heads up for Pandë!verse-centrism

Ossë's Gift by elfscribe
Glorfindel and Erestor's sea voyage from Umbar to Lindon is filled with intrigue and suppressed yearnings.

*Peer Review by sithisit
Annatar and Celebrimbor being bad, bad scientists in the name of gene therapy and scientific progress.

Penance by SurgicalSteel
Written in honor of Pandemonium's birthday - during the siege of Barad-dur, a surgeon deals with illness and injury from the various forces in place.

The People of Akallabeth by Hamfast Gamgee
A tale set at time of the end of Numenor, involving original characters, Amandil, Elendil, some Elves a bit of angst and some of my own ideas thrown in, and a bit of poetry!

*Pillar of Stillness by PerpetuaLilium
On the slopes of Meneltarma, Tar-Míriel the Queen remembers in anger.

Pivot Point by Aiwen
Celebrimbor and Annatar meet for the first time.

A Plain, Simple Love Story by Keiliss
The king and the archivist. Respect, friendship, misunderstanding, making up - all the good things that build a forever kind of love..

Price of a Broken Promise by Himring
Erendis has given up on her errant husband and is no longer waiting for Aldarion to return from his voyage to Middle-earth. Or so she says.

Originally written for B2MeM 2012, but posted here for Akallabeth-in-August and to go with Oshun's excellent new biography of Erendis.

The Prisoner and the Hobbit by pandemonium_213 and Dreamflower
A prisoner in the Halls of Mandos, although grateful to be alive, nonetheless finds his days to be monotonous, that is, until a most unusual person, and one whose life was affected greatly by the prisoner's masterwork, accepts an offer to begin a correspondence.

*Prodigal Son by Silver Trails
Oropher's younger son comes back home.

The Promised Land by Rhapsody
Isildur and Anárion standing on the bow, hoping what good will come after the destruction of Númenor.

*Pyrrhic Wedding: Loss All Around by Himring
The future of her ladies-in-waiting becomes a counter in the marital conflict between Tar-Ancalime and her estranged husband Hallacar. Hallacar shames Tar-Ancalime into permitting them to marry. We are allowed to assume that they all were unreservedly grateful for this opportunity. But were they?

A Rare Gift by Elisif
At the end of his life, Elros recieves an unexpected visitor.

Reborn by Gadira
A conversation that will change the fate of Númenor forever. Written for B2MEM Day 14, "Armenelos", on the subject of religion. Based on my Full of Wisdom verse, though it can be read on its own.

Retreat by avanti_90
As Ar-Pharazôn's fleet approaches the shores of Aman, Finarfin and Nerdanel prepare to leave Tirion behind.

*The Ring by Silver Trails
Oropher writes to Amdir after the sack of Eregion.

Rings of Pride; Rings of Ruin by Aiwen
Celebrimbor discovers that Annatar has betrayed them all, and has to take responsibility for the situation before total disaster can result.

Rising by Dawn Felagund
Tar-Míriel's final ascent to the Meneltarma. A "dribble" poem.

Risk Assessment by pandemonium_213
Noldorin journeymen and masters of the Gwaith-i-Mírdain discuss the secrets of lembas with a Sindarin apprentice to the Yavannildi.

Round Two by Independence1776
Lúthien survived the First Age and has spent much of the time in the East. When she arrives in Imladris on a random visit to her descendants, she learns Sauron is hunting for the Ring. Lúthien and Huan take it upon themselves to help Frodo to Mordor.

*SA 1856 (ii): Something Like Being a Consort by Ilye
Glorfindel, Gil-galad and a reflective moment on the beach. Irrepressibly fluffy, and slightly damp.

*SA 1856 (i): Something Like Being a King by Ilye
A contrast of constants and motion. Glorfindel reflects on his homes, his lives and his king - oh, and on sex in unusual places.

Sacrifice by SurgicalSteel
Not everyone involved with the sacrifices at Armenelos were believers.

*A Scrap of Parchment by Uvatha the Horseman
Sauron returns to Mordor and openly declares himself, and Umbar declares its allegiance to him. Told by Urzahil of Umbar, who later becomes the Mouth of Sauron.

The Sea and King Meet in Treachery by Adonnen Estenniel
'Tis treachery, they told Ar-Pharazôn, 'tis foolish pride. Perhaps it was, perhaps. But still he set his course for the West.

Seed of Hope by lindahoyland
Isildur's deeds continue to inspire his descendants.

Seek the Horizon, Númenor's Sons by Dawn Felagund
"Above all arts they nourished shipbuilding and sea-craft, and they became mariners whose like shall never be again since the world was diminished; and voyaging upon the wide seas was the chief feat and adventure of their hardy men in the gallant days of their youth"--a Númenórean mariners' chant.

Shards of Courage by Alassante
A squire is trusted with an heirloom of the king but at what cost to his honor?

*The Shipwright Shrugs by Kitt Otter
Short whatnots and nonsense about Círdan, spanning from Cuiviénen to Forever.

*Single Combat by Uvatha the Horseman
Sauron accepts Gil-galad's challenge of single combat to end the siege of Barad-dur.

Some Futile Hope by Friendsheyho
It is the Second Age of Middle-earth. Sauron is regrouping, the Rings are being forged, the Numenorians are beginning their descent into madness, and Glorfindel has been sent back to Middle-earth for...for what? Only time will tell, and when it does, all of Middle-earth will rise up to fight.

Stars of Heaven's Dome by Cirdan
At the end of the Second Age, Elrond meets this long lost uncles, Elured and Elurin. They accompany him to see Oropher of Greenwood then decide to join in the War against Sauron.

Spaces of the Heart by Keiliss
Glorfindel's first meeting with Idril's grandson.

Small Expectations by Noliel
On the eve of the Numenorean-landing at the shores of Aman, Mahtan comes to see Nerdanel in her home by the coast to persuade her to come with him to Valimar.

*Snowed In by Keiliss
Gil-galad, his Herald and his SO (Senior Organiser?) are separated from their hunting party by a blizzard and are forced to spend the night in a cave.

*Some Futile Hope by Friendsheyho
It is the Second Age of Middle-earth. Sauron is regrouping, the Rings are being forged, the Numenorians are beginning their descent into madness, and Glorfindel has been sent back to Middle-earth for...for what? Only time will tell, and when it does, all of Middle-earth will rise up to fight.

Sons of the Damned by Erurainon
Servents of the Valar warn the lords of Numenor.

Stones of Seeing 1. Vardamir Nólimon by Clotho 123
At the end of his reign Elros receives a visitor. How the palantíri came into Númenor.

Stones of Seeing 2. Tar Míriel by Clotho 123
Second in a trilogy telling the history of the palantiri. In the dying days of Númenor the stones come into the keeping of Elendil's line.

A storm to break the world by ford_of_bruinen
for lignata - Isildur, not about the One Ring

On the ships fleeing Numenor

Storm Tossed by Levade
She was his, his bright-eyed, noisy, always-hungry lovely, until the day the sea called her home. Ereinion, Círdan and a quick look at life in 2nd Age Lindon.

Strange Fates by PerpetuaLilium
Eregriel and Síreth are two young elves of Lothlórien in the later years of the Watchful Peace. They are in love and in fact betrothed, yet they have chosen to put their ceremonies off for many years, until they can come to some conclusion about what implications the unusual features of their union may have for its validity, in accordance with the local application of the Laws and Customs. Then, during a sudden spate of instability, Síreth, with Eregriel, is chosen to take part in Lórien's first extensive diplomatic interaction with the realms of Men in centuries. They must manage their relationship and cultural expectations across the years and leagues that follow.

A Struggle with Darkness by Fireworks
Construction has begun on Sauron's temple in Armenelos, but strange, dark afflictions are plaguing those who go near ...

Súlimëo Quentar: March Stories by Elleth
Elleth's stories, drabbles and double-drabbles for Seven in '07 and B2MeM 2008. Please refer to the chapter summaries for further info.

Survivors of the Downfall by SurgicalSteel
Sailors from Umbar realize that Numenor is no more.

The Swan's Song by Kimberleighe
Chapter 9 includes: challenges and Idhreniel accepting a new position.

The tales and travels of Gil-galad's chief counselor during the Second Age.

*The Talisman by Keiliss
Gil-galad rides to Forlond on an important errand which may not turn out quite as he, Elrond or Erestor expect.

The Temptation of Knowledge by Erulisse
In response to the prompt “borrow”, what did Celebrimbor think about when he was facing Annatar for the first time? Did he think he was borrowing trouble?

Tenn' Ambar-Metta by Fiondil
Elrond receives a final letter from his brother.

*Their Uncle's Letter by Himring
Elrond receives Elros's last letter.

This Distant Shore by Rasksha the Demon
When much is lost, there still remains much to do. A Thanksgiving-inspired look at some special immigrants in the late Second Age.

Through Darkness Unescapable by Valiniel
The Alkallabeth was written as a history, but histories rarely reveal the whole truth. What was the truth behind the life of Tar Miriel, last queen of Numenor?

Till Fire Purge All Things New by Pandemonium_213
Sauron has a moment of doubt in the Sammath Naur.

Time of Trial by Lyra
Sauron has become Ar-Pharazôn's most trusted advisor, but it is not an easy job even for a cunning Maia. An unknown intruder in the palace gardens, however, enables him to set some of his more ambitious plans in motion...

A Time to Heal by clotho123
At the beginning of the Second Age Gil-galad must decide what to do about the surviving Feanorian followers. Can the Noldor be reconciled?

*To Linger by LadyBrooke
After Beleriand sinks, Celeborn and Oropher have one last discussion before parting.

Torn asunder by Rhapsody
What were Mithrellas thoughts on the eve when she left her family behind on Middle Earth?

To Stand Fast Against the Night by Fiondil
Tar-Palantir makes a decision upon receiving the Sceptre of Númenor, a decision that does not meet with universal approval.

Touch of a Vanished Hand by elfscribe
When Elendil and his group of Númenóreans wash up on Lindon's shores, Elrond's past comes back to haunt him.

To Move a Star by Kimberleighe
A brief glimpse into the moments before Gil-galad's combat with Sauron.

To Ward Winter's Chill by elfscribe
Sometimes it takes more than one night of passion to start a relationship on a sound footing. (Glorfindel/Erestor) Sequel to Osse's Gift.

*The Trees of Numenor by Himring
A sequence of eight drabbles spanning the history of Numenor, with a particular focus on the period of Aldarion.

*Le trône de papier by Dilly
Extrait des "Vies des Noldor Illustres", de l’historien controversé Amilcar de Númenor. Un passage du chapitre consacré à Fingon, cinquième roi des Noldor.

True Gift by Tarion Anarore
An old, old Celebrimbor drabble, written once upon a time ago for the HASA Word of the Day challenge.

Volcano by SurgicalSteel
Late Second Age. Ar-Zimraphel struggles up the mountain.

Character death.

The Walls Will Serve by Himring
A series of three vignettes, set beside the springs of Little Gelion below Himring Hill, written for Gwailome.
i. Maedhros decides to build a fortress on Himring Hill (Maedhros, original characters)
ii. After the Dagor Bragollach, Maedhros shows Himring to his cousin (Maedhros/Fingon)
iii. In the Second Age, Elrond visits Tol Himling (Elrond, Arminas, Erestor)

War Children by Fireworks
While the Númenóreans live in the height of their pride and folly, they leave darkness and ruin in their wake. A young woman in Middle-earth struggles with this legacy.

The Western Sea (II) by Gadira
Second fic in my arc about a certain Númenórean family of notorious traitors. This time I give you Melkorbazer, a character who also gets mentioned in my fic Full of Wisdom.

When We Were Very Young by Marta
"And it came to pass that Tar-Palantir grew weary of grief and died. He had no son, but a daughter only, whom he named Míriel in the Elven-tongue; and to her now by right and the laws of the Númenóreans came the sceptre. But Pharazôn took her to wife against her will..." (The Akallabeth)

*While These Visions Did Appear by oshun
These are my responses in graphic format to B2MeM 2013 prompts.

If we shadows have offended,
Think but this, and all is mended,
That you have but slumber'd here
While these visions did appear.
--Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night's Dream

*Winter's Drums by pandemonium_213, Huinare
Story by pandemonium_213: The grisly banner having served its purpose, Sauron enlists the assistance of his soldiers and bodyguard to bear Celebrimbor's corpse to its final resting place in the foothills of the Misty Mountains while a snowstorm approaches from the southwest.
Illustrations by Huinárë: Title: 1. "Examining His Work" / 2. "Thundersnow" Pencil illustration / Construction paper collage. Rating: G

The Wisdom of Isildur by Marnie
After Gil-Galad's death, Elrond and Celeborn talk power, allegiances and rings.

Without a War by Erurainon
A man of Numenor meets a woman of the Faithful ere the deluge and reflects upon war and peace.

Woolgathering by pandemonium_213
In the waning years of Tar-Palantír's reign, a young woman of the Númenórean nobility and a shepherdess of Hyarastorni find pleasure in one another's company. They know that they must guard the nature of their relationship, but Elerína recalls what her grandmother told her of a great queen who loved a woman.

*The Writhen Pool by pandemonium_213
When the Istyari of Second Age Ost-in-Edhil deny her a place in an important new initiative to be taken up by the Gwaith-i-Mírdain, a young master smith struggles to make her mark in the man's realm of the forges. An opportunity arrives when the smith is offered a commission that will present challenges of both mind and heart.

Pandë!verse-centric.

Rated Adult as a precautionary measure. Specific advisories will be posted per chapter as needed.

Chapter 7, Ballain's Tale now added.

The Wrong Way to the Indies by Fireworks
After a world-changing discovery, a young cartographer in Middle-earth struggles with what he has to tell the world.

"Zimraphel" and "I who loved her" by Noliel and Dawn Felagund
Tar-Miriel faces the wave that will drown Númenor while, in the midst of the forbidden realm of Valinor, Ar-Pharazôn is granted sudden awareness of her fate.


(Return to Top)



Character of the Month Biography

Círdan the Shipwright

Oshun


Continued from Part 1.

Círdan Exposes Secrets of the Exiled Noldor

Despite having manifested more openness to the Noldor than Thingol, Círdan does not relinquish sensible caution in his assessment of the unanticipated return to Middle-earth of their long-sundered kin. As noted earlier above, it is Fëanor’s Noldor who rescue Círdan and the Falathrim from their encirclement by Melkor’s forces in the Dagor-nuin-Giliath (Battle-under-Stars). Círdan’s relief must have been tremendous and unexpected. Celegorm’s troops find themselves "in a position to bear down victoriously on the flank of an Orc-host that previously had laid siege to the Havens of the Falas"1 and obliterate Melkor’s hordes, at last freeing Círdan’s people.

Celegorm receives news of an Orc force approaching the Fëanorian army from the west and waylays them

with a part of the Elven-host, and coming down upon them out of the hills near Eithel Sirion drove them into the Fen of Serech. Evil indeed were the tidings that came at last to Angband, and Morgoth was dismayed. Ten days that battle lasted, and from it returned of all the hosts that he had prepared for the conquest of Beleriand no more than a handful of leaves.2

Círdan’s gratitude and need, however, never override his loyalty to Thingol nor his deductive reasoning, which tells him there are missing details surrounding the Noldor’s flight from Aman. He remains alert and observant of his new neighbors.

It was not long before whispered tales began to pass among the Sindar concerning the deeds of the Noldor ere they came to Beleriand. Certain it is whence they came, and the evil truth was enhanced and poisoned by lies; but the Sindar were yet unwary and trustful of words, and (as may well be thought) Morgoth chose them for this first assault of his malice, for they knew him not.3

This plan composed of lies and half-truths is reminiscent of the treacherous tactics of Morgoth in Valinor when he fanned the flames of smoldering resentments and differences within the Noldor into a major conflagration, which, until the point of his intervention, had been relatively petty and manageable.

And Círdan, hearing these dark tales, was troubled; for he was wise, and perceived swiftly that true or false they were put about at this time through malice, though the malice he deemed was that of the princes of the Noldor, because of the jealousy of their houses. Therefore he sent messengers to Thingol to tell all that he had heard.4

Thingol, naturally, reacts strongly. He turns to his own kinsmen Finrod, Galadriel, and Angrod, visiting in Doriath at the time, for confirmation or denial. Finrod, deeply troubled, still refuses to accuse his cousins and reveals nothing. His brother Angrod, however, tells all: "Then Angrod spoke bitterly against the sons of Fëanor, telling of the blood at Alqualondë, and the Doom of Mandos, and the burning of the ships at Losgar."5 It is impossible to imagine that the dirty secrets of the Noldor’s flight would have not come out at some point, and it is doubly impossible to fault Círdan for his revelation to Thingol and Melian of the rumors being circulated. However, the result long-term will be devastating for the Elves in their drawn-out battle against Morgoth. The division between Thingol and the Noldor becomes a lasting one. And when the Noldor and their allies most need Thingol’s support, they will not receive it.

The Relationship of Círdan to Finrod and Fingon

In The Silmarillion, one reads of the particular relationships that develop between Círdan and Finrod Felagund and Fingon the Valiant. First, Finrod, among all of the princes of the Noldor, ruled the geographically largest realm, if not one of the most populous. It touched the lands under the control of Círdan and stretched from Sirion to the sea, excluding the Falas.

There [in the Falas] dwelt those of the Sindar who still loved ships, and Círdan the shipbuilder was their lord; but between Círdan and Finrod there was friendship and alliance, and with the aid of the Noldor the havens of Brithombar and Eglarest were built anew. Behind their great walls they became fair towns and harbours with quays and piers of stone. Upon the cape west of Eglarest Finrod raised the tower of Barad Nimras to watch the western sea, though needlessly, as it proved; for at no time ever did Morgoth essay to build ships or to make war by sea.6

There is some question in alternate texts as to whether Círdan ever consider Felagund as his lord.

The concluding sentence 'But they acknowledged the high-kingship of Thingol, and Círdan never took the title of king' differs from the Annals, where Círdan either acknowledged Felagund of Nargothrond as overlord, or else was (as it seems) an independent Lord of the Falas 'yet ever close in friendship with Nargothrond' (GA §85, and commentary p. 117).7

In the Battle of Sudden Flame or Dagor Bragollach, Morgoth breaks the Siege of Angband that held for a period of approximately 400 years of uneasy peace. With the death of his father, Fingon the Valiant becomes High King of the Noldor. Fearing for the safety of his young son and heir, Fingon sends him into what he hopes will be relative safety to be fostered by Círdan at the Havens of the Falas.

Great was the lamentation in Hithlum when the fall of Fingolfin became known, and Fingon in sorrow took the lordship of the house of Fingolfin and the kingdom of the Noldor; but his young son Ereinion (who was after named Gil-galad) he sent to the Havens.8

Unnumbered Tears

In collaboration with his spouse Melian the Maia, Elu Thingol has basically a single strategy against Morgoth after the First Battle of Beleriand fought before the arrival of the Noldor (for further details on that tenuous victory won at a terrible cost see the first part of this biography ). Thingol retreats into his cave city of Menegroth in Doriath. Melian constructs a magical barrier protecting their underground fortress city and the lands immediately surrounding it. Already wary and mistrustful of the arrogant and energetic Noldor who return with such an aggressive flourish to Middle-earth before he knows anything bad about them, Thingol hardens into an intractable isolationist stance after he learns of the Kinslaying in Alqualondë. He refuses to join in the strongest and most widespread alliance organized by the Noldor in the First Age in their ongoing struggle against Morgoth.

Thingol grants reluctant permission to his two chief captains and marchwardens Beleg and Mablung, as individuals, to join the alliance of the free peoples of Middle-earth in the Nirnaeth Arnoediad (Battle of Unnumbered Tears). They are the only two Elves from Doriath to participate.9 Thingol refuses to send troops. Actual military support from Doriath (or Nargothrond) might have turned the tide of that war; instead Unnumbered Tears goes down in the history of Arda as the most heartbreaking of examples of a potential victory turned into a horrific defeat by betrayal from within the forces of Maedhros and the alienation of potential supporters.

Many songs are yet sung and many tales are yet told by the Elves of the Nirnaeth Arnoediad , the Battle of Unnumbered Tears, in which Fingon fell and the flower of the Eldar withered. If all were now retold a man’s life would not suffice for the hearing.10

Círdan, however, as the leader of the Falathrim Sindar, while recognizing Thingol as his King, rules almost entirely autonomously in the Havens of the Falas.

But Círdan and his people remained in many ways distinct from the rest of the Sindar. They retained the old name Teleri . . . and remained in many ways a separate folk, speaking even in later days a more archaic language. The Noldor called them the Falmari, 'wave-folk', and the other Sindar Falathrim 'people of the foaming shore'. [Internal footnotes redacted.]11

Michael Martinez’s "Life in an Elven Fishing Town" is an interesting article containing speculation upon Círdan’s people and their settlements at the end of the First Age and throughout the Second Age. Therein he observes that

In many ways, Círdan seems like the first Viking: he is tall, bearded, a warrior, and a mariner. And his people fought with great axes as well as swords, much like Vikings. After the Falathrim were driven from their homes to Balar, Círdan’s mariners ranged up and down the western coasts of Beleriand, raiding the Orcs and disturbing Morgoth’s outposts. Círdan even allied himself with Hithlum during the Wars of Beleriand, an act no doubt born of necessity since his people could not be protected by Melian’s Girdle.12

A cautionary note on the purpose and orientation of Martinez’s creative interpretations of his impressive knowledge of the texts is that his intent is to summarize and extrapolate for a target audience of gamers and role-players not overly concerned with citations. By contrast, one might note that these monthly biographies are directed toward, although not limited to, committed readers of Tolkien and writers of fanfiction who have an expressed interest in being pointed to the primary sources upon which any speculative remarks are based, a subtle perhaps but significant difference.

Returning to the account of the Battle of Unnumbered Tears, the Lord of the Falas does not stand down from the great alliance against Morgoth, which is organized by the Union of Maedhros and Fingon, by then High King of the Noldor.

Under the standard of Fingon, Círdan’s mariners, shipwrights, and fisher-folk join ranks with the Noldor of Hithlum, the Men of Dor-lómin and of the House of Hador, the much reduced number of Elves from Nargothrond who insist in participating despite Orodreth’s refusal to commit significant forces, and the small grouping of the folk of Haleth, not to mention, of course Turgon’s glittering and well-equipped troops from Gondolin. So, Fingon’s tremendous force of Elves from throughout Hithlum and his "great strength of Men"13 in the final count includes a not insignificant number of Círdan’s people ("to them were gathered many Elves of the Falas"14).

Círdan’s coastal peoples’ actions in these histories prove them to have none of the isolationist impulses of their Doriathrim kin living under Thingol. This is doubtless due both to the leadership of Círdan and his people’s vulnerability. They do not confine themselves to a narrow land bordering the sea. Instead, they march to Eithel Sirion where Fingon’s forces were "arrayed in the valleys and woods upon the east of Ered Wethrin."15

After Fingon is killed in battle, the majority of the brave forces of his alliance, so recently filled with such optimism, are smashed and scattered, and their future hope all but destroyed. Círdan rescues large numbers of survivors and refugees fleeing in the wake of the devastation of that defeat. Even his Havens of Falas are not safe, however, and he removes all that he is able to save to the Isle of Balar in the south.16

After rampaging throughout the north, Morgoth finally turns his eye upon the Falas.

Morgoth sent great strength over Hithlum and Nevrast, and they came down the rivers Brithon and Nenning and ravaged all the Falas, and besieged the walls of Brithombar and Eglarest. Smiths and miners and masters of fire they brought with them, and they set up great engines; and valiantly though they were resisted they broke the walls at last. Then the Havens were laid in ruin, and the tower of Barad Nimras cast down; and the most part of Círdan’s people were slain or enslaved.17

The last possible sanctuary of many of those refugees of war lies with Círdan and he does what he can with his limited remaining forces.

But some went aboard ship and escaped by sea; and among them was Ereinion Gil-galad, the son of Fingon, whom his father had sent to the Havens after the Dagor Bragollach. This remnant sailed with Círdan south to the Isle of Balar, and they made a refuge for all that could come thither; for they kept a foothold also at the Mouths of Sirion, and there many light and swift ships lay hid in the creeks and waters where the reeds were dense as a forest.18

The urge is absolutely irresistible to point out that there is in fact a version of canon in which even Maedhros and Maglor are among the refugees that Círdan shelters on the Isle of Balar.

Maidros and Maglor, sons of Fëanor, dwelt in hiding in the south of Eastern Beleriand, about Amon Ereb, the Lonely Hill, that stands solitary amid the wide plain. But Morgoth sent against them, and they fled to the Isle of Balar. Now Morgoth’s triumph was complete, and all that land was in his hold, and none were left there, Elves or Men, save such as were his thralls."19

The inarguable fact of the final result of the Battle of Unnumbered Tears is that it is an utter and devastating defeat for the grand alliances that Maedhros and Fingon had built upon their dream of a final victory over Morgoth. And, long after many of the surviving participants have disengaged, Círdan still presses forward in his work to save his own people and any refugees who fall within his geographic reach.

Turgon, having assumed the High Kingship of the Noldor and retreated to Gondolin, then decides the time has come to seek outside help and appeals to Círdan also.

At the bidding of Turgon Círdan built seven swift ships, and they sailed out into the West; but no tidings of them came ever back to Balar, save of one, and the last. The mariners of that ship toiled long in the sea, and returning at last in despair they foundered in a great storm within sight of the coasts of Middle-earth; but one of them was saved by Ulmo from the wrath of Ossë, and the waves bore him up, and cast him ashore in Nevrast. His name was Voronwë; and he was one of those that Turgon sent forth as messengers from Gondolin.20

There will be no help coming in response to Turgon’s desperate attempts to appeal to the Amanyarin Eldar and the Valar. The fate of the exiled Noldor grinds inexorably toward the fulfillment of the Doom of Mandos. In those dark days, all that is left of the vast lands and fortresses of the lords of the Noldor are the secret cities of Gondolin and Nargothrond. The future High King of the Noldor, Ereinion Gil-galad, is for the moment still safe under Círdan’s care and tutelage.

Círdan Warns Orodreth of the Imminent Threat to Nargothrond

Chronologically, the next major world-changing event in which Círdan plays a role concerns a warning from Ulmo the Lord of the Waters, who is the Vala most concerned about the welfare of the Elves and Men in Middle-earth throughout the period when the Valar in Aman appear to have all but forgotten them. Círdan sends a messenger to Nargothrond conveying a serious warning from Ulmo. The messenger, one Gelmir, arrives with his message for Orodreth, King of Nargothrond following the death of Finrod Felagund.

The always ill-fated Túrin, in close counsel to Orodreth at this time, is present when the warning is received. He rudely tells Gelmir, "‘Your news is stale. If the message of Círdan was to any purpose, it should have come sooner.’"21 But Gelmir will not be silenced:

‘At least, lord, you shall hear the message now,’ said Gelmir to Orodreth. ‘Hear then the words of the Lord of Waters! Thus he spoke to Círdan: "The Evil of the North has defiled the springs of Sirion, and my power withdraws from the fingers of the flowing waters. But a worse thing is yet to come forth. Say therefore to the Lord of Nargothrond: Shut the doors of the fortress, and go not abroad. Cast the stones of your pride into the loud river, that the creeping evil may not find the gate."’ These words seemed dark to Orodreth, and he turned as ever to Túrin for counsel.22

Arrogant, scornful, and mistrustful of the messenger, Túrin counsels Orodreth to dismiss the warning, saying, "‘What does Círdan know of our wars, who dwell nigh to the Enemy? Let the mariner look to his ships! But if in truth the Lord of Waters would send us counsel, let him speak more plainly."23 Has there ever been a worse adviser? Nargothrond falls as a result of Orodreth’s failure to heed the warning from Círdan.

After the fall of Nargothrond and the fall of Gondolin, the center of the story of the Elves in Middle-earth has shifted to Gil-galad as the last High King of the Noldor, where he governs from the refuge founded by Círdan upon Balar. It is of no small significance that not only was Gil-galad fostered by Círdan, but Eärendil looks to Círdan as a mentor as well, and it is through his relentless seafaring that eventually he reaches Aman and convinces the Valar to come to the aid of the struggling remnants of the free peoples of Middle-earth.

After the War of Wrath and the destruction of Beleriand, Gil-galad, in close collaboration with Círdan, founds the settlements of Lindon between the Blue Mountains and the Sea and the havens of Forlond, Harlond, and Mithlond.24

The Wisest of the Wise

The wisdom of Círdan is not only spoken of throughout the texts, but demonstrated graphically in his deeds. One needs to recognize that a wise man by our modern definition usually refers to some indefinable characteristic involving astuteness and good judgment grounded in life experience. In The Shibboleth of Fëanor, wisdom is described as: "‘Knowledge’ would be nearer, or ‘Philosophy’ in its older applications which included Science."25 Elven wisdom as referenced therein is closer to philosophy in the Greek sense of the term, which included science and mathematics and incorporated everything the philosophers knew, believed, or inferred about the universe.

In Tolkien’s subcreation, the Noldor are famous for their Kurwë (Curwë) or ‘technical skill and invention.26 Círdan is no Noldo, but he has no shortage of scientific knowledge and technical skill as a shipbuilder and mariner of unequaled skill and inventive intelligence. Aficionados of Tolkien who enjoy a "scientifictious" approach will likely imagine that Círdan has mastered all manner of skills and science related to the business of keeping a ship afloat on a large body of water and its navigation—an understanding of geography, winds, weather, and the stars—as well as the tools required to build a ship and sail one.

Another frequently referenced form of Elven wisdom is Ñolmë which combines science and philosophy.

The stem appeared in Quenya (in which it was most used) in forms developed from Common Eldarin ňgol-, ňgōlo-, with or without syllabic ň: as in *Ñgolodō > Quenya Ñoldo (Telerin golodo, Sindarin goloÐ) - the Ñoldor had been from the earliest times most eminent in and concerned with this kind of ‘wisdom’; ňolmë a department of wisdom (science etc.); Ingolë (ňgōlē) Science/Philosophy as a whole; ňolmo a wise person; ingólemo one with very great knowledge, a ‘wizard’. . . The wizards of the Third Age - emissaries from the Valar - were called Istari ‘those who know.’27

This Ñolmë may be applied to Círdan as well. Not only is he a master of practical matters and highly skilled in the art and science of sailing, but he has shown himself to be sage and patient in a political sense, able to see into the hearts of Elves, Men, and Maiar with an additional gift of insight into the future, stretching as far as instances of actual foresight or prophetic visions. He is a warrior and a political leader as well, a teacher, and a mentor. There are numerous references above and below to his skills as a leader in peace and war.

During the onset of the events which culminate in the fall of Ost-in-Edhil, the center of an Eldarin renaissance of arts and sciences in the Second Age, Celebrimbor seeks to distribute the three major Elven rings of power. Knowing that he must hide them from Sauron, he chooses to give them to those among the Elves whom he believes to be most trustworthy and powerful. Without going into great detail, Tolkien mentions in a letter that Sauron upon realizing that the Elves have discovered his identity

. . . came against them with open war, demanding that all the rings should be delivered to him, since the Elven-smiths could not have attained to their making without his lore and counsel. But the Elves fled from him; and three of their rings they saved, and bore them away, and hid them.28

There are a few minor variations relating to the chain possession of the ring of fire Narya which ends up in the hands of Círdan. In the Appendices to The Lord of the Rings, it is said:

Throughout the Third Age the guardianship of the Three Rings was known only to those who possessed them. But at the end it became known that they had been held at first by the three greatest of the Eldar: Gil-galad, Galadriel and Círdan. Gil-galad before he died gave his ring to Elrond; Círdan later surrendered his to Mithrandir.29

Interestingly, Círdan’s choice of Gandalf to best use and safeguard Narya is another example of his prescience and/or ability to look into the hearts and minds of others and know them. He recognized that Gandalf was the strongest of these wizards who arrive from across the sea—once again his power of foresight comes to the fore. Others, even Galadriel or perhaps Gandalf himself, looked to Saruman as the paramount among the wizards sent from the West. Círdan, however, holds the ring until their arrival the Third Age, chooses to present it to Gandalf, not Saruman, saying,

"Take this ring, Master, for your labours will be heavy; but it will support you in the weariness that you have taken upon yourself. For this is the Ring of Fire, and with it you may rekindle hearts in a world that grows chill."30

The Role of Círdan among the Númenóreans and Dúnedain in Middle-earth

Before jumping into accounts of somewhat obscure wars in the dark days of the northern Dúnedain after the kingdom of Arnor had split into three, it is useful to examine Círdan’s relationship with Aldarion and the early Númenórean mariners.

For nearly 600 years in the early Second Age, the men of Númenor confine themselves to their idyllic isle. But like people throughout the history of our real world, being surrounded by the sea, they are drawn to explore first their own island homeland and later much farther shores. Vëantur, the grandfather of the first of the great Sea-Kings of Númenor Tar-Aldarion, introduces his gifted grandson to the sea. Vëantur was the first Númenórean mariner to make his way back to Middle-earth.31

When Aldarion reaches the age of twenty-five, Vëantur, nearing the end of his sailing days, desires to take him across the sea to Middle-earth with him. This voyage will have a great effect upon both the future of Númenor and Middle-earth.

. . . once more at least I would ride the Great Sea and face the North wind and the East. This year you shall come with me, and we will go to Mithlond and see the tall blue mountains of Middle-earth and the green land of the Eldar at their feet. Good welcome you will find from Círdan the Shipwright and from King Gil-galad.’32

Aldarion is to make many voyages to Middle-earth. He looks to Círdan, as he had to his grandfather before him, as a mentor in the craft of ship-building and voyaging, much to the consternation of his father initially. Gil-galad also involves Aldarion in the concerns of Middle-earth. The connection between the island of Númenor and Middle-earth is never again to be severed.

After Elendil and Gil-galad perished defeating Sauron at the end of the War of the Last Alliance of Elves and Men, it is Círdan who stands by Elrond when he attempts to convince Isildur to destroy the One Ring.

The Ruling Ring passed out of the knowledge even of the Wise in that age; yet it was not unmade. For Isildur would not surrender it to Elrond and Círdan who stood by. They counselled him to cast it into the fire of Orodruin nigh at hand, in which it had been forged, so that it should perish, and the power of Sauron be forever diminished, and he should remain only as a shadow of malice in the wilderness. But Isildur refused this counsel . . . .33

Círdan in the Third Age

The next series of encounters with Círdan chronologically, before we read of him in the narrative of the events of The Lord of the Rings and the aftermath of the Ring War, are recounted in the historical texts to be found in the final volume of that work in the Appendices to The Return of the King.

There we learn that in the early Third Age the northern kingdom of the Dúnedain of Arnor has been divided into three parts. Círdan assists the kings of Arthedain in a long drawn-out attempt to destroy the Witch-king of Angmar. In the year 1409 of the Third Age, Círdan assists the valiant young Araphor son of King Arveleg in repelling the enemy from Fornost and the North Downs.34

Generations later, with the menace of the Witch-king continuing, Círdan hears that King Arvedui of Arthedain is trapped on the shore of the Icebay of Forochel in the Blue Mountains, where the Snowmen are attempting to feed and shelter him and his men. Círdan sends a ship to rescue them. However, that ship and all of its crew and passengers are lost when it founders and sinks during a blizzard. Thus, ends the reign of the last of the Kings of the Dúnedain of the north based in Arthedain, who had preserved the line of Isildur son of Elendil, which will continue to survive and will one day produce Aragorn.35

Círdan also assists the Dúnedain of the North in finally achieving a victory against the Witch-king, ending the power of Angmar in the Battle of Fornost.

"Then Círdan summoned all who would come to him, from Lindon or Arnor, and when all was ready the host crossed the Lune and marched north to challenge the Witch-king of Angmar."36

The Battle of Fornost is where Glorfindel delivered his famous prophecy: "Do not pursue him! He will not return to this land. Far off yet is his doom, and not by the hand of man will he fall."37

According to the article on the palantíri in Unfinished Tales, Círdan took possession of the abandoned Elendil Stone on Emyn Beraid, with which one could see across the sea into Elvenhome, but which had no connection to any of the other palantíri.38

Following the construction by Círdan and Gil-galad of their cluster of coastal cities after the flooding of Beleriand, Círdan is always to be found at the Havens, wise and able, with the intent to assist, shelter, or advise those who require him. He is turned to as a comrade in war. He is one of the members of the White Council of Elven lords and wizards who come together to address the mystery of the growing power of Dol Guldur. And it is Círdan who continues to ferry across the great sea those of the Eldar who would return to Elvenhome.

At the Grey Havens dwelt Círdan the Shipwright, and some say he dwells there still, until the Last Ship sets sail into the West. In the days of the Kings most of the High Elves that still lingered in Middle-earth dwelt with Círdan or in the seaward lands of Lindon. If any now remain they are few.39

Conclusion

In the section on Círdan in The Peoples of Middle-earth, there is a moving paragraph, which describes Círdan’s first sight of the Sea at end of the long trek of the Eldar from Cuiviénen across Middle-earth and after his long search for Elu Thingol. He has missed, to his great dismay, the opportunity to travel with the last of the Teleri to be ferried to the West. Sorely disappointed and eager to reach this land of light, he determines to make the trip in his own ship to the Undying Lands. But he is warned he has not yet the skill, although he someday will have. But, more importantly, that he has tasks in Middle-earth which no one else can fulfill.

. . . it seemed to him that he saw (in a vision maybe) a shape like a white boat, shining above him, that sailed west through the air, and as it dwindled in the distance it looked like a star of so great a brilliance that it cast a shadow of Círdan upon the strand where he stood. As we now perceive, this was a foretelling of the ship which after apprenticeship to Círdan, and ever with his advice and help, Eärendil built, and in which at last he reached the shores of Valinor. From that night onwards Círdan received a foresight touching all matters of importance, beyond the measure of all other Elves upon Middle-earth.40

It is easy upon first glance at the material to overlook the importance of Círdan and his unique role in Middle-earth. Tolkien’s Silmarillion is filled with more flamboyant heroes and anti-heroes among the Eldar. However, upon more in-depth reading and attention to his history and his accomplishments, his steadfastness and the depth of his wisdom, it becomes well-nigh impossible to overrate Círdan’s significance.

Perhaps this explains why Tolkien returned to add additional details to his history of Círdan. The Telerin leader, while present in so many significant events or struggles from Cuiviénen until the sailing of the last ship to the West, played the consistently vital roles of nurturing, advising, mentoring, and serving as a wellspring of wisdom and perspective, while showing few of the faults of self-interest, narrowness, or short-sightedness one finds to a greater or lesser degree in nearly all of the more dramatically described Eldar who dominate the narrative of the First Age.




Works Cited

  1. J. E. A. Tyler. The Complete Tolkien Companion. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2012.
  2. The Silmarillion, "Of the Return of the Noldor."
  3. The Silmarillion, "Of the Noldor in Beleriand."
  4. Ibid.
  5. Ibid.
  6. The Silmarillion, "Of Beleriand and its Realms."
  7. The War of the Jewels, Quendi and Eldar, footnote 10.
  8. The Silmarillion, "Of the Ruin of Beleriand and the Fall of Fingolfin."
  9. The Silmarillion, "Of the Fifth Battle: Nirnaeth Arnoediad."
  10. The Children of Hurin, "The Battle of Unnumbered Tears."
  11. The Peoples of Middle-earth, The Last Writings, "Círdan."
  12. Michael Martinez, Life in an Elven Fishing Town, June 6, 2012.
  13. The Children of Húrin, "The Battle of Unnumbered Tears."
  14. Ibid.
  15. The Silmarillion, "Of the Fifth Battle: Nirnaeth Arnoediad," and The Children of Húrin, "The Battle of Unnumbered Tears."
  16. The Children of Húrin, "List of Names in the Tale of the Children of Húrin."
  17. The Silmarillion, "Of the Fifth Battle: Nirnaeth Arnoediad."
  18. Ibid.
  19. The Lost Road and Other Writings, Part Two: Valinor and Middle-earth before The Lord of the Ring, The Later Annals of Beleriand.
  20. The Silmarillion, "Of the Fifth Battle: Nirnaeth Arnoediad."
  21. The Children of Húrin, "The Fall of Nargothrond."
  22. Ibid.
  23. Ibid.
  24. The Silmarillion, "Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age."
  25. The Peoples of Middle-earth, The Shibboleth of Fëanor.
  26. Ibid.
  27. The Peoples of Middle-earth, The Shibboleth of Fëanor.
  28. The Letters of J. R. R. Tolkien, 153 to Peter Hastings.
  29. The Return of the King, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B: "The Tale of Years."
  30. Ibid.
  31. Unfinished Tales, "A Description of the Island of Númenor."
  32. Unfinished Tales, "Aldarion and Erendis."
  33. The Silmarillion, "Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age."
  34. The Return of the King, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, (iii) "The Númenórean Kings," "The North-kingdom and the Dúnedain."
  35. Ibid.
  36. The Return of the King, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, (iii) "The Númenórean Kings," "Gondor and the Heirs of Anárion."
  37. Ibid.
  38. Unfinished Tales, "The Palantíri."
  39. The Return of the King, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, (iii) "The Númenórean Kings," "Eriador, Arnor, and the Heirs of Isildur."
  40. The Peoples of Middle-Earth, The Last Writings, "Círdan."

Author’s Note: I would like to thank, in addition to Dawn Felagund for her usual copy check under time pressure, my friend Ignoble Bard for graciously reading through this essay late on a weekend night.




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And the Winner Is ...

The Silmarillion is full of characters at the peak of their physical and intellectual capabilities, characters both wise and wondrous. What happens when Middle-earth's top contenders face off against each other? This challenge asks writers to pit two characters against each other to see who wins. Characters can fight physically or match their wits or even magic. From epic clashes in the tradition of Fingolfin vs. Melkor or Finrod vs. Sauron to the more everyday struggles of who will win a game, an argument, or the hand of a loved one, we look forward to seeing who will be named a winner.

Challenges Revisited: Akallabêth in August

This month, we focus on one of the most tumultuous times in Arda's history: the Second Age and the rise and fall of Númenor. But even as Númenor was the central player during these times, the whole of Arda was affected by the events that affected the prideful and unfortunates alike of this doomed island.

Any story that is or might conceivably be part of the Akallabêth is acceptable for this challenge. If it's been a while since you've read the tales of the Second Age of Arda, why not crack open this oft-neglected chapter and see if inspiration finds you? Here are a few plotbunnies that might find a home in this challenge:

Quote of the Month

"I must go down to the sea again, to the lonely sea and the sky; and all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by."
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Want more challenges? Check out our complete challenge listing for more than three years' worth of challenges to inspire your writing!

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Articles of Interest

Each month, the SWG newsletter features links to articles that our members might find interesting. Do you have something you'd like to suggest? An interesting essay or discussion going on in your journal or blog? Drop us a line at moderator@silmarillionwritersguild.org and we'll add your article, essay, or post to our next newsletter!

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Mythmoot II Conference Proceedings

The Mythgard Institute holds an annual conference, Mythmoot, at which papers on Tolkien studies and other topics related to speculative fiction are presented. Last year's Mythmoot conference proceedings are now available online. All papers have at least an abstract, and many are full-text.

The War of the ... Tolkien Biopics?

Either moviemakers are convinced that "Tolkien" and "movie" put together will turn into a dragon hoard, or there is a more arcane reason why two separate companies are simultaneously planning to release movies covering the life of J.R.R Tolkien. Read more in these two articles at Rolling Stone and The Guardian.

"Why I Wrote The Hobbit": BBC Archive Video Footage of J.R.R. Tolkien

In 1968, the BBC interviewed J.R.R. Tolkien for their series "In Their Own Words: British Authors." This week, alongside the release of the first trailer for the new Hobbit movie, the BBC has released this footage: a 13-minute mini-documentary that follows Tolkien around Oxford and shows an interview with him about how and why The Hobbit came to be written. While most of us are familiar with the infamous blank exam page that gave rise to the first line of The Hobbit and Tolkien's attested love of trees, the video shows Tolkien talking about these things in his own words. (Scroll down to the second video or watch it on YouTube here. The first video is the new Hobbit trailer, if you managed to miss that this week.)

Constellations of Middle-earth

For those of our members in the Northern hemisphere, summer is a great time to enjoy the night sky. Whether summer or winter, if you want to immerse yourself in Middle-earth while star-gazing, this Tumblr post about Middle-earth's constellationsis for you. Want to learn more about how the constellations of Middle-earth match up with our constellations? The SWG's own Kitt Otter covers the basics in her essay The Stars That Varda Made, or The Astronomy of Middle-earth by astronomer and Tolkien scholar Kristine Larsen.

Interactive Map of Beleriand

The LOTR Project is building a fantastic map of Beleriand which currently includes the location of key Silmarillion events and the route of Tuor to Gondolin. It complements another great resource for Silmfic writers: a map of Middle-earth in the Third Age, which shows the routes of Thorin’s company in The Hobbit, and those followed by the members of the Fellowship during The Lord of the Rings.

"Politically Incorrect Tolkien" Cartoon

Tolkien’s characters are often the subject of funny cartoons. This time their author features too, as Tolkien takes questions from the PC police. Have a look here.

Announcements

LotR Genfic Community: Nonfiction Challenge

The August Challenge will once again have the theme "Nonfiction." You will not receive an element for this challenge; rather, we encourage all members to submit essays, research articles, and other nonfictional works related to Tolkien's legendarium. You are free to choose your own topic! The August challenge entries will be due Thursday, August 21 and will be revealed on Saturday, August 23. See the nonfiction challenge post for full details.

Many Paths to Tread: Tree and Flower Awards

Many Paths to Tread is hosting their third annual Tree and Flower Awards, an old-fashioned ticky-box award. All stories posted on the MPTT archive on or before July 26, 2014 that have not won before are eligible for nominations. Nominations are open until August 15. See the nomination post for full details on the award rules and how to nominate stories.

Registration Is Open for Mythmoot III!

Mythmoot III: Ever On will take place at the BWI Marriott in Linthicum, Maryland, on Saturday and Sunday, January 10 and 11, 2015. Details are being worked out and will be announced as they are confirmed, but we can tell you now that there will be familiar and new features, all geared to encourage participants to laugh while they learn. Early-bird registration at a reduced price continues through August 31, 2014. Visit the Mythmoot III page to learn more and make your reservations.

Call for Papers: Mythmoot III

Mythmoot III is seeking proposals for 15-20 minute papers on Tolkien and other speculative fiction and media. This is an excellent opportunity for interested fans, students, and scholars to present papers in a friendly venue with like-minded enthusiasts. First-time presenters are especially encouraged to submit proposals. All proposals relating to speculative fiction will be considered; themes of particular interest include:

Proposals are due August 31. See the full Mythmoot III call for papers for full details.

The Tolkien Society - Calling the 40th Oxonmoot

Oxonmoot is the annual conference hosted by the Tolkien Society. It brings together Tolkien scholars and students of all genres. Held in Oxford, the venue this year will be the Lady Margaret Hall. In 2014, Oxonmoot will last an extra day, running from 11th-14th September. For more information, and to book a place, visit the Tolkien Society’s Oxonmoot webpage.

Call for Papers: Popular Culture Association 2015

The Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association annual conference, to be held in New Orleans, April 1-4, 2015, is now accepting submissions for papers. There are several subject areas that might be of interest to Tolkien fans, including Tolkien Studies, Fairy Tales, Children’s/YA Literature, Gothic, Horror, Medievalism in Popular Culture, and Science Fiction & Fantasy, and more. Paper submissions are due by 1 November 2014. For more information see the Popular Culture Association conference website.




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