M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Morwenna » Mon Apr 15, 2013 7:25 am

:D I read it in Tolkien's Guide for Translators in A Tolkien Compass years ago. Then I got to show off my knowledge when my husband and I visited Mystic Seaport and they had one there.

Now I have to think of something good, and I'd better not forget this time! :P
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Melwa » Wed Apr 17, 2013 12:16 pm

What's next, Morwenna?
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Morwenna » Wed Apr 17, 2013 7:49 pm

OK, this is probably too easy, but:

Who mentioned "a pretty hobbit-skin to wrap an elven-princeling in," and when and where?

Bonus: And what do the lines parody?
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Melwa » Fri Apr 19, 2013 7:09 pm

Hah! A line from a favorite character to a favorite character! Aragorn said it after the Company exited Moria and he was checking Frodo and Sam's injuries. He'd just discovered the mithril-coat under Frodo's shirt. The line parodies the rhyme about a "little rabbit-skin to wrap the baby bunting in."
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Morwenna » Fri Apr 19, 2013 8:28 pm

OK, Melwa, you're up! :)
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Melwa » Fri May 03, 2013 12:12 pm

Sorry to make you wait so long. I had a complicated idea for a question in my head, but not time to finish compiling it. So, I'll go for a simpler one. What is a "wain" and where in LOTR is it mentioned? (Bonus if you don't do any research for it.)
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Parmamaite » Fri May 03, 2013 1:21 pm

Off the top of my head, and without opening a book, I'd say that a 'wain' is an old word for a type of horse-wagon, and it's mentoined when the Wainriders (presumably a nomadic people living in wains) attacked Rhovanion and Gondor. - I think they were the invaders who was defeated in Ithilien in 1944.
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby siddharth » Thu May 16, 2013 2:46 am

I think Parmamaite is right.
Shall we start a countdown for Melwa to come?
Last edited by siddharth on Sun May 19, 2013 9:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby solicitr » Thu May 16, 2013 7:13 am

Parmamaite wrote:Off the top of my head, and without opening a book, I'd say that a 'wain' is an old word for a type of horse-wagon, and it's mentoined when the Wainriders (presumably a nomadic people living in wains) attacked Rhovanion and Gondor. - I think they were the invaders who was defeated in Ithilien in 1944.



Just to chime in, T also describes "great wains" laden with supplies departing Minas Tirith for the Field of Cormallen; Merry rode in one of them.
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Melwa » Thu May 16, 2013 8:47 am

Sorry. :blush: Quite right, Parmamaite. You're up!
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Morwenna » Thu May 16, 2013 9:15 am

Sorry for butting in on the "wains," but I seem to recall that somewhere (FOTR?) there's a footnote explaining that the Sickle was the hobbits' name for the Wain or Great Bear.

Back to Parmamaite. :)
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Melwa » Fri May 17, 2013 7:00 am

Wow, nice, Morwenna. Bonus bonus award!
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Morwenna » Fri May 17, 2013 7:23 am

Aww. :) But it's still Parmamaite's turn! :D
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Parmamaite » Fri May 24, 2013 1:51 am

Actually I think that Morwenna's and solicitr's answers were better than mine, but since I was awarded the turn, here's my question:

Money does not play any big part in the Legendarium, but is mentioned occasionally.
Where in the stories of Middle-earth does Tolkien mention coins?
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Morwenna » Fri May 24, 2013 7:06 am

At Bree, when Butterbur recompenses Merry for the lost ponies, it's in silver pennies, I think twelve?

(Somebody a few decades ago tried to work out Northern ME economics based on that.)
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby siddharth » Fri May 24, 2013 7:16 am

Bilbo finds himself without a hat, a walking stick or any money when he went out.

Azog threw a purse at Nar containing coins.

Sam says somewhere that he'd not go to (some place) for any money. (sorry for the poor memory)

Butterbur's talk about the silver pennies, which Morwenna said already.


I'm not sure if it is in any of the stories, but the Castar was the currency of Gondor, IIRC.

Morwenna wrote:(Somebody a few decades ago tried to work out Northern ME economics based on that.)


:rofl: :rofl: :rofl:
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Parmamaite » Mon May 27, 2013 4:58 am

That is certainly an extensive answer siddharth! I only had the incident in Bree in mind.
Do you have a reference for the currency of castar in Gondor? I can't remember having seen that anywhere before.

Since Morwenna answered first, and siddharth came with the most extensive answer, I'd say that the next question goes to whoever of you to post first.
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Morwenna » Mon May 27, 2013 4:29 pm

Go ahead, Sid. :) Your answer was more complete, and I get more fun out of answering than asking anyway. :D
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby siddharth » Tue May 28, 2013 2:35 am

Parmamaite. :D I'm only mid-way through my first read of UT. I'd just read an article which mentioned Tolkien's quote about Gondorian coins and it stuck to me. Let me find that quote.

ETA: here it is.
It's actually given in HoME XII, in a footnote:

J.R.R.T wrote:farthing has been used for the four divisions of the Shire, because the Hobbit word tharni was an old word for 'quarter' seldom used in ordinary language, where the word for 'quarter' was tharantîn 'fourth part'. In Gondor tharni was used for a silver coin, the fourth part of the castar.


I now recall there is a Tharni as well. :D

Thanks Morwenna. :) I'll think of a good question this time!
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby solicitr » Tue May 28, 2013 7:34 am

siddharth wrote:
J.R.R.T wrote:farthing has been used for the four divisions of the Shire, because the Hobbit word tharni was an old word for 'quarter' seldom used in ordinary language, where the word for 'quarter' was tharantîn 'fourth part'. In Gondor tharni was used for a silver coin, the fourth part of the castar.



Since tharni "farthing" was actually used in Gondor for a coin worth a quarter-castar, the reflection arises that Butterbur's "silver penny" was the castar or a coin of similar size and weight. During all the long centuries of English silver pennies, they typically carried an equilateral cross on the reverse, which served as a guide for cutting into halves and quarters; the original "farthings" were quite literally quarters of a penny. From the late middle ages silver farthing coins were struck, 1/4 of a pennyweight, giving way in Stuart times to copper farthings.

(Note: we're talking really tiny coins here: the English silver penny was about the same weight as the old US silver half-dime, and a silver farthing less than half the weight of the sequin-sized silver 3-cent piece).
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby siddharth » Fri May 31, 2013 3:57 am

Here it is. The next one.

Wikipedia wrote:The hair on [Pippin's] head and his feet (which are exceptionally hairy, even for a Hobbit) is almost all golden and curly. At the beginning of The Fellowship of the Ring he is smaller than the rest of the Hobbits because he is the youngest and because he is a fallowhide hobbit. Fallowhide hobbits are described as more fleet and light footed than other strains of hobbit.


There are a few errors in this passage. Find any two.

Bonus Question: Who were the Variags?
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Morwenna » Fri May 31, 2013 7:17 am

The only thing that leaps out at me is the rationale that Pippin is smaller because he's a Fallohide; Fallohides were commonly taller than most other hobbits, even though more slender. I don't remember about the hairiness of the feet.

But the Epilogue does reference him as having golden hair, and most hobbits' hair is curly. And he is indeed the youngest.

(Does the spelling "fallowhide" qualify?)
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Parmamaite » Sat Jun 01, 2013 3:17 am

The Variags is a mysterious people, of which we know nothing except that they come from the region of Khand southeast of Mordor. It is not even stated wether they are human or not.

Tolkien probably got the name from the Væringjar, which was a term for the Vikings who went east into Russia and the Byzantine empire. In russian they are called Varyags or Variags.
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Melwa » Sat Jun 01, 2013 9:07 am

:clap: :clap: Nice!
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby solicitr » Sat Jun 01, 2013 11:35 am

Also false is the notion that by the 13th Shire century there remained distinct "Fallohide," "Stoor" and "Harfoot" ethnic groups. At most it could be said that there remained a sometimes-detectable Fallohidish strain in some of the leading families, rather like there is (or is feigned to be) a faint 'Norman strain' among English aristocrats.

Also of course the "golden hair;" exceptionally rare among Hobbits, who were typically brown-haired.
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby solicitr » Sat Jun 01, 2013 11:40 am

Parmamaite wrote:Tolkien probably got the name from the Væringjar, which was a term for the Vikings who went east into Russia and the Byzantine empire. In russian they are called Varyags or Variags.


And those who eventually entered the personal service of the Byzantine Emperors were known as the "Varangian Guard" (reinforced after the Norman Conquest by Anglo-Saxon ex-pats).

One wonders if therefore Tolkien envisioned the Variags as descendants of an eastern branch of the Northmen, Ostrogoths to the Rhovannic/Rohirric Visigoths, who went to the bad like most Eastern Men.
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby siddharth » Sun Jun 02, 2013 2:43 am

Great answers everyone!

The hair colour seems fair enough. The writer says: The hair on [Pippin's] head... is almost all golden while Frodo's son Pippin says in the Epilogue (of Mr. Pippin): he's got hair that's almost golden. So that's reasonably close.

What I found disturbin' (which have been mentioned already) :

Calling Pippin a Fallohide.
Tolkien says: Even in Bilbo's time the strong Fallohidish strain could still be noted among the greater families, such as the Tooks... implying that intermarriage had mixed the bloodlines by the time of the War of the Ring, and that there was no such thing as a "pure" hobbit breed by then.

But even if he was a pure Fallohide, it is the Harfoots who are the small and nimble ones. So that bit (the size and nimbleness) is just plain wrong.

I also don't recall any mention of Pippin's feet being particularly furry. (Treebeard's draughts increased curliness, not hairiness!). You would expect Stoors to have the hairiest feet if their facial hair is anything to go by.

And the glaring spelling-mistake!

Very poor bit of writing on Wikipedia's part. Wiki at it's worst!

And nothing to add of the Variags. I actually got to know more. :D

Well, solicitr mentioned the two of the main mistakes so I think next's your turn. :)
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Voronwe_the_Faithful » Sun Jun 02, 2013 6:14 am

siddharth wrote:
Wikipedia wrote:The hair on [Pippin's] head and his feet (which are exceptionally hairy, even for a Hobbit) is almost all golden and curly. At the beginning of The Fellowship of the Ring he is smaller than the rest of the Hobbits because he is the youngest and because he is a fallowhide hobbit. Fallowhide hobbits are described as more fleet and light footed than other strains of hobbit.


There are a few errors in this passage. Find any two.


Finding errors in Wikipedia Tolkien articles could be a whole separate trivia game.

Just sayin'.
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby Melwa » Sun Jun 02, 2013 9:23 pm

Voronwe_the_Faithful wrote:
siddharth wrote:
Wikipedia wrote:The hair on [Pippin's] head and his feet (which are exceptionally hairy, even for a Hobbit) is almost all golden and curly. At the beginning of The Fellowship of the Ring he is smaller than the rest of the Hobbits because he is the youngest and because he is a fallowhide hobbit. Fallowhide hobbits are described as more fleet and light footed than other strains of hobbit.


There are a few errors in this passage. Find any two.


Finding errors in Wikipedia Tolkien articles could be a whole separate trivia game.

Just sayin'.


Right up there with errors in the movies? :roll: :D

What's next, Solictr?
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Re: M-E & Tolkien Trivia (Third Continuation Thread)

Postby siddharth » Mon Jun 03, 2013 2:29 am

Melwa wrote:
Voronwe_the_Faithful wrote:
siddharth wrote:
There are a few errors in this passage. Find any two.


Finding errors in Wikipedia Tolkien articles could be a whole separate trivia game.

Just sayin'.


Right up there with errors in the movies? :roll: :D


Only, most of the movie-flaws are easier to find. i.e. Not much of a challenge. :P
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