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Questions tagged [the-lord-of-the-rings]

For questions about the trilogy of movies or books, 'The Fellowship of the Ring', 'The Two Towers' and 'The Return of the King'. Always use in conjunction with the [tolkiens-legendarium] tag and, for movie questions, the relevant movie tag, e.g. [fellowship-of-the-ring].

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Do curse words exist in Tolkien's Legendarium?

I've been (re)reading The Fellowship of the Ring, and it occurred to me that Tolkien doesn't use any curse words [from what I've been able to tell], although, insults & negative comments are still ...
4
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1answer
353 views

Why is that ravens and eagles considered helpful while crows are bad news?

It seems that crows are the harbingers of trouble and disaster, judging by king Theoden's choice of words, when giving a rather frosty welcome to Gandalf: 'I greet you,' he said, 'and maybe you ...
7
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6answers
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Could an Elf kill Sauron in single combat?

An elf named Glorfindel killed a Balrog in the First Age. Balrogs are Maiar that were corrupted by Morgoth. We know they can be killed by powerful beings, like the wizards, in single combat because ...
10
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2answers
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Who built Meduseld, the Golden Hall of Rohan?

Who built the Golden Hall in Edoras? Was it Eorl the Young, the first King of Rohan, or his son Brego? Or maybe was it started by Eorl and finished by Brego? I realize that the LOTR wikia says that ...
6
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1answer
496 views

How did Elrond know of the Paths of the Dead?

How did Elrond know of the passage in which Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli traveled down in The Return of the King and why would he suggest to Aragorn to take that road to summon the dead to fight for ...
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1answer
357 views

Why does Tolkien not give Aragorn a duel? [closed]

This is kinda more fan service than what makes sense from a literary perspective. Aragorn's position is confirmed as a leader and not necessarily a hero or a slayer, that is true. Yet that doesn't ...
7
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2answers
1k views

What happened between Frodo and Gollum in the Dead Marshes?

In the Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, when Frodo falls in the Dead Marshes on the way to the Black Gate and gets rescued by Gollum, they have the following conversation: Frodo: "Gollum?" ...
7
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2answers
620 views

Why was “The Lord of the Rings” translated as “In de Ban van de Ring” in Dutch?

The earliest translation of The Lord of the Rings was in Dutch, by Max Schuchart. He translated the title as In de Ban van de Ring, which translates back to English as "under the spell of the ring" or ...
11
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2answers
911 views

What happened to Merry after Tom Bombadil saved them from the Barrow-wights?

In the Fellowship of the Ring, chapter "Fog on the Barrow-Downs", the hobbits are captured by the barrow-wights and Tom Bombadil saves them. After Tom wakes them, Merry says something that implies he'...
40
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5answers
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Why was the breaking of the wall of Helm's Deep so important in “The Two Towers” movie?

I have not read the book, and I am referring here to the movie only. I saw in the movie that the way that lead to the inside of Helm's Deep was through a gate, from a somewhat steeply inclined ramp; ...
4
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0answers
78 views

Did Bilbo and Gollum have different after-effects of being Ring-bearers? [duplicate]

Gollum (Smeagol) was once a Hobbit. His life was extended over 500 years while he had the Ring. Eventually Gollum lost the Ring to Bilbo, who I think had it around 50-60 years (?). At the end of ...
7
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1answer
429 views

What did Bilbo's cryptic birthday message mean?

What did Bilbo mean when he said I don't know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve. Is this a compliment or an insult? The other ...
1
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0answers
98 views

Do the Nine Kings of Men still wear the rings after turning into Nazgûl? [duplicate]

Sauron gave several rings of power to many species that inhabited Middle Earth. The men were the most gullible and had been transformed into wraiths that are loyal to Sauron. After this transformation,...
6
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1answer
1k views

If Gandalf was a Maia, why couldn't he change form? [duplicate]

According to The LOTR wiki, Gandalf and Saruman are amongst the named Maiar. Again, a quote from Wiki: Maiar, like Valar, do not array themselves in a fixed form, but can freely change their ...
4
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0answers
82 views

Why didn't Sauron give the Hobbits any rings? [duplicate]

In the movie The Lord of the Rings it said that Sauron somehow gave (presumably by proxy) several rings to Elves, Dwarves, and Men. There's also another race called Hobbits, who became quite important ...
3
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2answers
2k views

Why did the Witch King not kill Gandalf?

When Gandalf meets the Witch King of Angmar, he said this, 'Go back to the abyss prepared for you! Go back! Fall into the nothingness that awaits you and your Master. Go!' Return of the King ...
5
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1answer
533 views

Why didn't Faramir recover Boromir's body?

Inspired by these two questions, Did Faramir see Boromir's actual body, or have a vision? and What happen to Boromir's body? When Faramir saw his older brother, Boromir, on the elven boat, ...
12
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1answer
417 views

Looking for an Alternative, Satirical Lord of the Rings Essay

Years ago I stumbled upon a satirical essay online all about Middle-earth and the War of the Ring. I can't remember the details but the overall idea of it was that the Orcs and Sauron had been ...
2
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2answers
532 views

Did Ungoliant possess either the Flame Imperishable or some alternate version of it?

As I understand, life in Arda was brought forth either by Eru Directly, or after the rough draft, Eru gave the go-ahead for that form of life to be legitimatized by giving it the Flame Imperishable. ...
26
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3answers
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Does Shelob have a human form?

I watched a trailer for Shadow of War this morning and in it we see a human woman who, it turns out, is Shelob. I've only read the LOTR trilogy and, as far as I recall, we never see her appear as a ...
15
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1answer
730 views

What did Faramir and Tolkien have in common?

It was mentioned in Faramir's wiki that (emphasis mine): Long after completing The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien would write that of all characters Faramir resembles the author most, and that he had ...
1
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1answer
398 views

Any indication what Sauron would do with the One Ring if he possessed it again? [duplicate]

Sauron seems hell bent on getting back the One Ring. Any word on what he planned to do with it? The question linked as duplicate is about Sauron wearing the ring, which isn't really what I am going ...
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6answers
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How does Gandalf (or anyone) know how to destroy the Ring?

The only way to destroy the Ring is by throwing it into the fire of Orodruin. This fact doesn't seem to be common knowledge and many people in the story (like Gimli) only learn about it at the council ...
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0answers
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Why couldn't the Fellowship use the Eagles? [duplicate]

For those unfamiliar with the video (and unable to access it), Gandalf basically summons some eagles, they fly over Mt Doom and drop the ring in. I guess my question is not so much "why they didn't" ...
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3answers
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Why didn't the Mouth of Sauron fight the Battle of the Black Gate?

I haven't read the books, but I have watched the movies many times already. If this scene is in the books, I would like to know the reference (i.e. the page and the version of the book). In The ...
11
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3answers
3k views

Who is the disapproving hobbit?

During one of The Lord of the Rings films I have a memory of a very curmudgeonly old hobbit, sweeping his porch or walk, I think, as he looks disapprovingly at some of the protagonists going down the ...
9
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3answers
2k views

Who are the 2 most powerful entities to battle each other directly?

I was thinking the other day, which were the 2 most powerful entities/characters that came into direct combat with each other. I know that the Gandalf/Durin's Bane battle may have been the instance of ...
14
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4answers
5k views

Why didn't Sam just destroy the ring?

When Shelob stinged Frodo, Sam luckily gets the sword, Sting, the Phial of Galadriel, and the Ring from Shelob's lair. After Sam defeats Shelob, he saw that orcs came by to kidnap Frodo and take him ...
10
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2answers
867 views

How was Isengard run before Saruman's creation of Uruk-Hai?

How was Isengard run before Saruman's creation of Uruk-Hai? This extract of the book got me curious: Late one evening I came to the gate, like a great arch in the wall of rock; and it was strongly ...
18
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1answer
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Why could the trolls from the Hobbit speak, whilst the ones in LOTR could not?

What is the reason for this? I understand that the Hobbit was intended as a children's book so elements such as this can be understood, but is there any legitimate reason why these trolls possessed ...
2
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1answer
527 views

What is the reasoning behind Gollum not harming the Hobbits in their sleep? [duplicate]

The first time Gollum had attempted to kill the Hobbits didn't go as plan, as the Hobbits were aware of his presence and were able to trick him into thinking that they were asleep. However, Gollum ...
16
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2answers
3k views

Did Saruman break the Istari's charge to 'inspire not fight'?

I've seen plenty of talk about Gandalf, but do any of the things Saruman did during the course of the books break the rules of direct interference? Off the top of my head: He imprisoned Gandalf He ...
7
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1answer
839 views

Why is Saruman so reluctant to leave Orthanc?

Not for Saruman, apparently, ever to endure the hardships of the road or always be a guest in someone else's house. And he also needs to run a few experiments. So he sets up a home. However, how can ...
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3answers
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Why didn't Sauron kill Isildur?

I was watching the Fellowship of the Ring, during lunch time. In the Prologue scene, the armies of Men and Elves march against the armies of Mordor. When Sauron came to kill the armies of Men and ...
0
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3answers
266 views

Can anything reduce Sting's detection ability?

We recently got an estimate on how far Sting can detect enemies, which got me wondering if that would be a constant distance regardless of the environment. Is there any material or magic that is ...
35
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2answers
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Can goblins or orcs see the light Sting gives off?

In LOTR, the sword Sting glows whenever goblins or orcs are nearby enough, and in the movies, it can get pretty bright. Can they see this light? If so, has it ever given the wielder away?
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3answers
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From what distance can Sting detect Orcs or Goblins?

Having re-watched the Hobbit and LoTR trilogies recently and I wondered if there was any evidence in any of Tolkien's writings as to the what is the greatest range at which Sting (and other elven ...
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1answer
246 views

Why isn't there more important characters at the Council of Elrond? [closed]

The meeting is obviously extremely important, yet there is so many minor characters there and not that many important leaders etc.
6
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1answer
1k views

How can Gandalf travel so fast?

At the start of The Fellowship of the Ring he seems to go from Shire to Minas Tirith to Saruman while the rest haven't traversed that much. How is this possible?
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2answers
558 views

Did Sauron's mercenaries know they were fighting for a supernatural force?

Later in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, the forces of Gondor, the elves, Aragorn, etc. go up against human mercenaries from distant lands. Did the mercenaries have any inkling that they were fighting ...
17
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2answers
4k views

Who is Sauron's second-in-command?

Is the Witch king of Angmar or the Mouth of Sauron the chief lieutenant of Mordor? (similar to Darth Sidious and Darth Vader) During the War of the Ring, the Witch King leads Sauron's army in the ...
6
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1answer
774 views

Does Gríma have a “real” surname? [duplicate]

Does Gríma have a surname? Wormtongue was a nickname/epithet and not his actual name - but did he have a genuine one?
10
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1answer
402 views

How does the ferry work over the Brandywine?

Farmer Maggot and Frodo both expect the hobbits to be able to cross the Brandywine river from their side of the bank, and Meriadoc is able to cross the river from his side, he does so to search for ...
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2answers
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Was the mission of the Fellowship of the Ring a 'secret' mission?

And I will choose you companions to go with you, as far as they will or fortune allows. The number must be few, since your hope is in speed and secrecy. [emphasis mine] Does the use of the word ...
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4answers
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Why didn't the Fellowship use horses for transportation?

A kind of similarity to this question, Why didn't Gandalf or Frodo Fly to Mount Doom? The difference is that this question I'm asking is why didn't the fellowship use horses for transportation ...
33
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4answers
10k views

Why didn't Sauron attack the Beacons of Gondor?

I was just finishing the audio books of The Lord of the Rings and I'm a little bit confused. When Sauron's armies march to Minas Tirith they light the beacons to warn their neighbours and send a ...
25
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3answers
4k views

Did Gollum die happy?

Did Gollum die happy when he had the Ring in his hand but at the same time was being consumed by lava? Are there any traces on this topic in book or in the movie?
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1answer
2k views

Did Gandalf continue to wield Glamdring?

In the various movie adaptations of The Lord of the Rings, it seems that Gandalf continued to use a sword following the Death and Return of Superman Gandalf. It looks like they usually show the same ...
24
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2answers
6k views

Did Gandalf ever lose a staff before, or is it purely a Jackson invention?

So in the Jacksonverse movies we see Gandalf losing his staff tons of times. I believe, in the movies, he loses his staff to the Necromancer (The Hob.), and Saruman (LOTR-1st), and the Witch-King (...
33
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1answer
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Why did Denethor choose to burn himself to death?

In LOTR Return of the King, Denethor Steward of Gondor decides to burn himself, and his son Faramir to death. Watching the part in the movie again, and I'm still a teeny bit unclear why he kills ...