The Lord of the Rings is an epic fantasy novel written by philologist and University of Oxford professor J. R. R. Tolkien. It is the second best selling novel ever written with over 150 million copies sold.

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Did Arwen actually die?

Appendix A of Lord of the Rings says of Arwen's fate: There at last when the mallorn-leaves were falling, but spring had not yet come, she laid herself to rest upon Cerin Amroth; and there is her ...
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Is “Second Breakfast” only in the movie version of LOTR?

There is a cute moment in the movie where Pippin asks about "Second Breakfast". I recall food being important to Hobbits, but I don't recall a similar scene in the book. The movie scene is very ...
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How did Shadowfax 'appear' when Gandalf summoned him?

Considering the following quote: 'They have not returned,' said Legolas. 'It will be a weary walk!' 'I shall not walk. Time presses,' said Gandalf. Then lifting up his head he gave a long ...
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How could Legolas walk on snow?

In The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring when the Fellowship is climbing the mountains and are pretty much overcome by the snow; Legolas is quite able to walk on the snow, when the rest ...
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How powerful are Tom Bombadil's songs?

Bombadil's songs sound whimsical and goofy on the surface but obviously carry great power and authority. His song saves the Hobbits from being killed by a mean old Willow tree and forces some nasty ...
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Who is the older of two, Goldberry or Tom Bombadil

Who is the older of two, Goldberry or Tom Bombadil? Tom found her long ago,but she was there for him to find, couldn't she be more older than him?
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What is the origin of the Great Eagles?

What do we know about the origin of the Great Eagles in LOTR? We know quite a bit about the origins of Elves, Men, Dwarves, and (somewhat) the servants of Morgoth (dragons, orcs, etc.). But I don't ...
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How much does the average adult male Dwarf weigh?

According to 'Tolkein Gateway', their average height is between 4-5' tall but there's no weight range guestimates. I assume they're pretty well built and muscular, especially the 'warrior class', but ...
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How does an orc perceive a hobbit?

From the perspective of an orc - what is a hobbit? "The Hobbit" told us that dragons and trolls do not know the race of hobbits. LotR told us that even treants do not know the hobbits. So what about ...
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Can Smaug melt the One Ring?

From The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, "The Shadow of the Past", we know that Gandalf told Frodo: there is not now any dragon left on earth in which the old fire is hot enough ...
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Where have all the dragons gone?

Related to the question: How could Thranduil have met a dragon? It seems that there was a time in Tolkien's legendarium when dragons roamed the land and were a real and physical force to be reckoned ...
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Why was Frodo not allowed wear the Ring before Rivendell but was allowed after?

Following on from "Why didn't Sauron find Bilbo when he put on the ring like Frodo?" and it's (possible) dublicate "Why was Bilbo not discovered by Sauron during his extended stay with the Wood ...
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Why was Bilbo not discovered by Sauron during his extended stay with the Wood Elves? [duplicate]

Currently reading The Hobbit to my daughter, and we came to the Barrels out of Bond chapter where the Dwarves are captured and imprisoned by the Wood Elves. Bilbo sneaks in with his magic ring of ...
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How is Eowyn written in language of Rohan

How is Eowyn, shield maiden of Rohan written in Rohirric (is that the language of Rohan?)?
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Did Gandalf have a teacher/mentor?

Did Gandalf have a teacher/mentor? If yes, who was his teacher/mentor? If no, from where did he get his knowledge? How did he became so wise? This question doesn't ask if he had a teacher to learn ...
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Would Gandalf have been promoted to the white if he had not fought the Balrog?

Gandalf was promoted to a White wizard after his body was destroyed in the battle with the Balrog. This was done mainly to replace Saruman as he had joined Sauron (or at least swayed significantly ...
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In the movies, is Sauron's armor correctly portrayed?

Is there in the books or on Tolkien's letters a description of Sauron's armor during the first or third age, when he was not trying to "seduce" other races? Is it accurately portrayed in the ...
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Did the events of LOTR War in the North take place in Tolkien’s writings?

I played LOTR War in the North and I wonder if the characters from the game were really mentioned by Tolkien. Did this war really take place in parallel with adventure of the Fellowship? Who are ...
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Is the One Ring’s appearance described in the books?

Is its appearance, shape, etc. actually described within the canon (besides that it is a gem-less ring)? I think everyone has the One Ring from the films in mind, where it is depicted as a golden ...
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What is the correct pronunciation of “Warg”?

Just a quick question about the pronunciation of the word Warg. In Game of Thrones it’s called a “Warg” (in the books that’s how it’s written), but in the series they pronounce it “Worg”. However in ...
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Sunlight + Cave Troll

In Fellowship of the Ring in Mines of Moria, there was this cave troll who keeps smashing everything. Also in this same room is the Tomb of Balin where a sunlight pierces thru. Why didn't this ...
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Where does “magic” come from in LOTR?

In The Lord of the Rings, is there an explanation for where the magic comes from? How is it possible in a world of otherwise predictable physical consequences? For example, is it energy or something ...
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Is there any information on the (external) etymology of “Gandalf”?

It is well known that Tolkien was, first and foremost, a linguist. His familiarity with Germanic languages comes into play more than once- think of Beorn (similar to Norwegian bjørn "bear"). It ...
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Does Middle-Earth have nobility?

I've not read any books of Middle-Earth bar The Hobbit, so my knowledge of the setting is severely lacking. From the films and what research I have done, I've found many references to kings, some ...
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Did Saruman continue to exist as an ethereal Maiar after he was murdered?

Inspired by What was Saruman the White's purpose? The Istari are Maiar in corporeal form - it seems evident that some aspect of the Istari continues after the death of their corporeal (and can ...
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Why did Númenóreans fear and dislike Valar?

Sauron taught the people of Númenor many things, and in most of his speeches he spoke against the Valar, who most Númenóreans already feared and disliked. ( Ar-Pharazôn @ Tolkien gateway ) Why ...
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The King Of Numenor's Sword

I can't remember where but I read somewhere that the sword of the king of Numenor was in fact Aranruth - the sword of Elu Thingol. How is this possible? I assume that Dior took up Thingol's throne ...
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Why do the Wise always wait and watch until they are destroyed? [closed]

We have seen throughout the Silmarillion and other Middle Earth related histories that the forces of "Good" (Elves, Edain, Naugrim etc) constantly sit and wait for their enemy to get stronger before ...
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Was there a Church in LOTR/Middle Earth? [duplicate]

We know that there were active deities in Middle Earth (Eru Ilúvatar - who performed at least one tangible modern act, namely resurrection and return of Olorin/Gandalf) and that people were aware of ...
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Who or what is the oldest sentient being in Tolkien's lore?

The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, The Histories of Middle Earth, all lore related to this universe is acceptable fodder. Regardless of their power, susceptibility to The One Ring, ...
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What did Saruman mean by “Something festers in the heart of middle earth”?

In the extended version of the movie "The Return of the King", Saruman tells Gandalf from above Orthanc: "Something festers in the heart of Middle Earth, something you have not yet seen. But the ...
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Who is the oldest character in LotR trilogy? [closed]

Who is the oldest character in the trilogy, what is his role, race and powers?
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Can Aragorn live forever? [duplicate]

This question is inspired by Why is Arwen dying? Aragorn is a half-elf, and if he chooses to move to the west together with all the elves, can he live on forever? Can Elrond make Aragorn immortal?
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Was Carn Dum of Angmar built over Utumno?

While rereading the Silmarillion, I've been having some fun contrasting maps of Middle-Earth during different ages (found just by Googling.) I noticed something odd. Consider this map of the First ...
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Is there anything political in Lord Of Rings [duplicate]

I am not deeply interested in Science Fiction, I probably just know popular movies, books. Thus this will be the only question which I will ask in this site most probably please don't misunderstand me ...
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Do the Ainur age?

In the book of Lost Tales (I think) there was a passage about the Valar recieving three mysterious beings who wound the world in the chains of time (I can't remember the exact passage or way of ...
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Why could the Istari attack Dol Goldur?

We've covered the "indirect intervention only" instruction to the Istari before, and talked about whether defeating the Balrog qualified. But what about attacking Dol Goldur? The White Council made ...
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Is there any particular reason why Gandalf got resurrected in the forest, and so did Sauron (Dol Goldur)? [closed]

When Gandalf got resurrected as Gandalf the White, he got resurrected in the forest. Sauron also got resurrected in the forest to take a fortress there, Dol Goldur. Might not be the same forest but.. ...
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Why didn't Sauron find Bilbo when he put on the ring like Frodo?

When Frodo put on the One Ring, both the Nazgul and Sauron himself found Frodo. However when Bilbo had the ring and possibly used it many times, Sauron sought Gollum to get a hint on where to look for ...
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What are the Undying Lands like, and what sort of lives do Frodo, Bilbo, Gandalf and the Elves find there? [duplicate]

After the events of 'the Return of the King', Frodo, Gandalf the White, Bilbo Baggins, Lady Galadriel and her husband leave Middle Earth and journey to the Undying Lands. Just out of curiosity, what ...
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Why doesn't Gandolf whip it out in the major battles? [duplicate]

The dragon in LOTR is powerful. Powerful things can exert lots of power The exertion of lots of power is useful for winning wars one wants to win Gandalf fights in wars he wants to win Gandalf is a ...
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What real-life cities have been used as the basis for cities in The Lord of the Rings?

Did Tolkien use any real cities as basis for his stories? If yes, which cities have counterparts in Middle-Earth?
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Are there any phoenix like creatures in Tolkien's fantasy universe?

I want to know if any creatures similar to a phoenix appear in Tolkien's Legendarium (Lord of the Rings / The Hobbit) universe? By "similar to a phoenix" I mean a creature that has some of the ...
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Do Lord of the Rings or The Silmarillion pass the Bechdel test?

Motivation Let's face it, Tolkien wasn't much of a promoter of women's equality (to say the least). Thus there are no female characters in the Hobbit. the Lord of the Rings certainly has several ...
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Why didn't the Nazgul or their beasts pick up the Hobbits' scent?

Orcs and Uruks can smell people from some distance away. And Aragorn says (in FotR, A Knife in the Dark): ... And at all times they smell the blood of living things, desiring and hating it. ...
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Why wasn't gunpowder more common in Middle Earth?

By the Third Age, gunpowder was obviously invented, but it was very rarely used. In late medieval and early modern Europe (and subsequently on the whole planet) it completely changed warfare. As ...
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Compasses on Arda

Would a compass work on Arda? Or rather, beginning in what age would a compass work on Arda? ... and the follow-up question: Why don't Frodo and Sam use a compass in the Emyn Muil?
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Ring-bearers - who can notice what about whom and when?

So, I want to get something straight with respect to the bearers of the 20 rings of power (3 Eldar, 7 Dwarves, 9 Men, 1 Boss). Before asking my question(s), here is some Motivation: Sometimes ...
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Did the Army of the West know why they were marching on the Black Gate?

After the unexpected victory at Pelennor Fields and the loss of their Steward it seems that the common soldiers would despair to follow Aragorn and Gandalf on what was obviously a suicide mission. On ...
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How old was Lady Arwen, wife of Aragorn in the Lord of the Rings? [duplicate]

Lady Arwen is possibly thousands of years old when The Lord of the Rings starts off. But exactly how old was she? What was the age difference between her and Aragorn? Considering the age difference, ...