Questions tagged [tolkiens-legendarium]

For questions about any works in J.R.R. Tolkien's Legendarium - The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, The Silmarillion, and other works set in the same universe - or about that universe as a whole. Questions about movies, games, or other media set in the same universe should also use this tag. Questions about Tolkien himself or works by him which are not part of the Middle-earth universe should NOT use this tag use [j-r-r-tolkien] instead.

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Did Sauron ever consider that the Valar and/or Eru Ilúvatar may not allow him to conquer Middle-earth?

I am wondering if there is anything mentioned in LOTR canon that Sauron had once given thought to the possibility that the Valar and/or Eru Ilúvatar may not allow him to conquer Middle-earth, and due ...
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3 votes
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Do we know if Gollum/Sméagol was called to the Halls of Mandos?

My understanding is that the second Children of Ilúvatar are called to Mandos when they die and then move ... elsewhere. I think this applies to all men, halflings, etc and the only way to avoid it is ...
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44 votes
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What does Gandalf the White mean by his strange speech about Boromir?

In The Two Towers, chapter five, soon after Gandalf has returned as Gandalf the White, he says something very peculiar to Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas in Fangorn: ‘You have not said all that you know ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
160 views

How to translate "The Eye of Sauron is always watching" to Black Speech? [duplicate]

How would the following sentence be translated to Black Speech: "The Eye of Sauron is always watching"? Or, more simply, "Sauron is always watching", or, even more simply, "...
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6 votes
1 answer
193 views

Where were the Three during the Last Alliance?

During the War of the Last Alliance — or basically as soon as Sauron's spirit limbed back to Middle-Earth after his body got lost alongside Numenor and he got the One back from its hiding place where ...
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7 votes
2 answers
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Is there a longer audio clip than this where Tolkien discusses the Eagles?

I was linked to this today: At first, I assumed that it was faked/cut together. But now I think it's real, and that he really did say this while alive. I never knew ...
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0 votes
2 answers
222 views

Translation for a LOTR tattoo

I want to get a LOTR tattoo with the quote “Until the stars are all alight” in Tengwar. If anyone can help me translate it I would be so grateful.
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-2 votes
1 answer
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Where did the Elves go when they said they were leaving Middle-earth? [duplicate]

When the Elves said they were leaving Middle-earth where were they going? For some reason I thought they were going underground. If it was another continent couldn't Sauron just build ships?
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12 votes
2 answers
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How much did the livelihood of the Rohirrim rely on agriculture?

The Tolkien Gateway says they were "herdsmen and farmers". Tolkien described them as "still partly mobile and nomadic people of horse-breeders" (Letter #297), so I guess they at ...
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3 votes
2 answers
277 views

Why did both Frodo and Aragorn keep Gollum a secret for seemingly no reason?

After the Fellowship had left Elf Paradise and was boating down the long river, Sam notices what turns out to be Gollum following them. Sam tells this to Frodo in the camp, which has no guard, and ...
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-2 votes
1 answer
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What exactly did Galadriel fear/know/assume would happen if she had accepted the Ring? [duplicate]

A frustrating part is where Frodo actually (sort of) offers the Ring to Galadriel. She appears to laugh and find it almost funny, and fight some internal battle against herself, until her "good ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Was Tolkien implying (heat/locomotive) engines in The Lost Road?

Here's the quote: The teaching of Sauron has led to the invention of ships of metal that traverse the seas without sails, but which are hideous in the eyes of those who have not abandoned or ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Why did Tar-Calion listen to Sauron and become so evil?

Around the beginning of his rule, Tar-Calion the Golden was a dear friend to Amandil the Lord of Andúnië, despite Amandil being leader of the Faithful, and he let him be a member of the Council of ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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What counts as being "given" the One Ring?

Inspired by this question. What counts as being given the one ring? As I recall, when Bilbo is leaving for Rivendell, Gandalf refuses to take the Ring for safe keeping, instead he tells Bilbo to leave ...
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6 votes
1 answer
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How soon did Smeagol develop a split personality?

How long did Smeagol have the ring until his personality split into his good former self and the evil Gollum? At the time Bilbo took the ring from him (T.A. 2941) he had the split personality. However,...
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-4 votes
1 answer
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Why didn't Bilbo ever visit the Grey Havens or the Elostirion before 3021? [closed]

Bilbo was like a tourist, travelling far through Middle-earth to Rivendell, the Woodland Realm, Esgaroth, Dale, the Erebor and back. But given his wanderlust and his friendship with the elves, why ...
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4 votes
2 answers
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Why could Melkor's forces not detect Gondolin by flying around?

If I understand correctly, Gondolin was not protected by any magical or godly means hiding it from Melkor and his forces. Now, the Echoriad mountains were pretty far up North, and also not that far (...
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8 votes
1 answer
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Did Bag End have a second door?

This is a map of Bag End from The Atlas of Middle-earth (found here.) There's a door at the end of the tunnel. Is it mentioned in the books? Or is the map not accurate?
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2 votes
1 answer
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Is this the Elostirion?

In this clip at the very beginning in the first seconds there are towers seen high up the hill. Are they or one of them intended to be the White Towers or do they belong to the Grey Havens already? I ...
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18 votes
1 answer
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What is the criteria of inclusion in the Big Jubilee Read that caused the Lord of the Rings book not to be included?

The Times reported that a panel of Commonwealth experts, academics, booksellers and librarians, assembled by the Reading Agency has decided not to include The Lord of the Rings (as well as Harry ...
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-3 votes
1 answer
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How big is the Gulf of Lune, actually?

When you look at this image from the end of Return of the King it seems the Gulf of Lune isn't as large as the Encyclopedia of Arda claims, namely that it would span more than two hundred miles. It's ...
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2 votes
0 answers
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Why do they keep talking about important things with open windows in Lord of the Rings?

In Bag End, Gandalf and Frodo are talking about extremely sensitive topics with the window wide open. Anyone could have listened in to their conversation and ran off to gossip about it all over ...
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14 votes
2 answers
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What do the family relations between the Valar mean?

TL;DR: Some of the Valar are described in the Silmarillion as husband and wife, and others are described as siblings. But it seems that the Ainur don't procreate, and it's unclear what marriage means ...
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6 votes
1 answer
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Why did Frodo not bring a lot of money with him on his very possibly one-way escape out into the unknown?

When they first meet Strider in the Pony Inn, and he starts talking about wanting a "reward", Frodo, believing that he's referring to a monetary such, thinks about the fact that he only ...
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18 votes
2 answers
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What is the significance of Denethor eating the tomato?

The scene in which Faramir is leading a battle and Denethor is eating the tomato while Pippin sings. What is the significance of that? Ostensibly it's to show that Denethor isn't interested or has ...
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14 votes
1 answer
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Was it confirmed by anybody that an orc was modeled after Harvey Weinstein?

I just stumbled upon the story from 2021 that one orc in The Lord of the Rings from director Peter Jackson was modeled after Harvey Weinstein: One orc among many in the Lord of the Rings movies was ...
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15 votes
2 answers
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Why does Frodo keep referring to the party as if he were alone? (In the first book.)

Frodo keeps saying that he ("I") am going to take this or that way, even though they are four Hobbits and as many ponies. They are a whole little party/fellowship already before Rivendell. I ...
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15 votes
1 answer
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What type of writing did the Hobbits use?

In the books, is there any information on what type of letters the Hobbits used when writing or printing? The Elvish scripts, runes, or something else? Thanks!
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16 votes
1 answer
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Why did Merry (apparently) not get to experience the first adventures with the other three hobbits?

I feel like an idiot for asking about this, since I'm currently and carefully (or so I thought) reading The Fellowship of the Ring. I'm at the chapter where they are just at the ferry with Merry ...
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1 vote
2 answers
394 views

Why didn't the Valar make a Ring of Power?

Sauron made the One Ring to rule them all by transferring some of his essence into it as a power amplifier. Morgoth also did this in a different way, using the whole of Arda as a Ring. Why didn't the ...
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41 votes
4 answers
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Why not march over Rivendell and take the ring?

After the battle on Weathertop the Nazgûl learn Frodo has the one ring and follow him to Rivendell, where Glorfindel defeats them. They have however by that time acquired the knowledge about the one ...
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6 votes
1 answer
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Why was this speech by Bilbo added to the Hobbit movie?

After the goblin ordeal, when the dwarves and Gandalf are waiting and wondering where Bilbo is, in the movie, he shows up after taking off the Ring and gives a great speech something along the lines ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Did the eagles from Tolkien's works have other appearances where they saved the day?

The eagles play a pivotal deus ex machina role in both The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings. I have not read any of the background works about Middle Earth and would like to know if they played any ...
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26 votes
3 answers
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How can the bear-man refer to a "Jack-in-the-box" in The Hobbit?

The Hobbit is supposedly set waaay back in our world. Yet, Beorn refers to "jack-in-the-box" as in the toy, when the dwarves show up in pairs. How can this be? How can anyone in that world/...
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1 vote
0 answers
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Why didn't Helm's Deep have a trebuchet? [duplicate]

I am wondering if there is a reason why Helm's Deep did not have a trebuchet(s). There were trebuchets mounted at numerous locations throughout the city of Minas Tirith in Gondor, so the Gondorians ...
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38 votes
1 answer
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Looking for a picture of the doll that inspired J.R.R. Tolkien to invent Tom Bombadil

English Literature Professor Jane Beal, in her article "Who is Tom Bombadil?: Interpreting the Light in Frodo Baggins and Tom Bombadil's Role in the Healing of Traumatic Memory in J.R.R. Tolkien'...
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10 votes
3 answers
446 views

Would it be possible to sail from Aman to Middle-earth in the Fourth Age?

Following Ilúvatar's intervention in the Second Age, we know that no ship sailed by men could ever again reach Aman in the West. By implication, then, the ship leaving the Grey Havens at the end of ...
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5 votes
1 answer
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Did Sauron have a sword?

In J. R. R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings lore there were present the common types of weapons as bows, arrows, spears, axes, pikes, maces, swords, etc. In high fantasy, swords have played a preponderant ...
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44 votes
1 answer
6k views

Do dwarf women have beards?

In light of Amazon's recent depiction of a non-bearded dwarf woman, and some of the recent controversy around this, the question is what exactly did Tolkien say about bearded dwarf women? Popular ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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How did Sauron withstand the seven-year siege of Barad-dûr?

We all know that the Siege of Barad-dûr, a key event of the War of the Last Alliance, lasted seven years (S.A. 3434-3441). During that period of time the Last Alliance of Elves and Men kept the bulk ...
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4 votes
1 answer
184 views

What did Tolkien write about the beard style of male dwarves other than of Thorin and Co (and Gimli)?

In The Hobbit, the Dwarves' beards are described quite explicitly. The convoluted history of how Tolkien thought about Dwarf women and their facial hair over is not something I want to raise here, but ...
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2 votes
0 answers
288 views

Why does Glorfindel have a saddle?

In FotR I, ch. XII, Glorfindel mentions his saddle: 'You shall ride my horse,' said Glorfindel. 'I will shorten the stirrups up to the saddle-skins, and you must sit as tight as you can. Later in ...
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2 votes
2 answers
577 views

Why did Peter Jackson add Aragorn's line "Let's hunt some orc"?

In the final sequences of the film The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), Aragorn says the phrase "Let's hunt some Orc". Was Aragorn referring to a particular Orc? The ...
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9 votes
1 answer
400 views

Why didn't Bilbo see what Frodo saw when he put on the ring?

When Frodo put on the ring at Amon Hen, he could see telescopically for hundreds of miles. And when he put it on at Weathertop, everything became dim and dark except the Ringwraiths. Yet the first ...
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5 votes
2 answers
368 views

Were Isildur's traces of the ring in the right order?

Copied from this answer, as I don't have an English copy of LotR: Already the writing upon it, which at first was as clear as red flame, fadeth and is now only barely to be read. It is fashioned in ...
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9 votes
1 answer
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What's with the Red Arrow?

In The Lord of the Rings, Book V, chapter 3, "The Muster of Rohan", Hirgon brings the Red arrow from Denethor, as a sign that Gondor desperately needs Rohan's help in the coming battles. He ...
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-3 votes
2 answers
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Why didn't Eru Ilúvatar trip Isildur?

Eru tripped Gollum, according to the LOTR wiki, thus destroying the One Ring. If he wanted it destroyed, why didn't he do something earlier, when Isildur took the Ring for his own when he was at the ...
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13 votes
1 answer
588 views

If Frodo had put on the One Ring in Moria, would he have been invisible to the Balrog?

I am wondering if a Balrog would have been able to see someone who was wearing the One Ring. Smaug was unable to see Bilbo when he was wearing the One Ring, so it makes me think that if Frodo had put ...
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0 votes
1 answer
367 views

What’s the threshold of power for a wielder of the one ring to defeat Sauron?

Through the series I recall there are different implications (or at least that’s my recollection of it) on who could use the ring to obtain enough power to defeat (and replace as Dark Lord) Sauron and ...
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2 votes
0 answers
149 views

Was Saruman truly a puppet? [duplicate]

This quote got me thinking: The world is changing. Who now has the strength to stand against the armies of Isengard... and Mordor? To stand against the might of Sauron and Saruman... and the union of ...
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