024 – Territories

It’s a small world, after all. Take a trip around the map with Alan and Shawn in Chapter 14 of The Silmarillion, Tolkien’s extensive description of the geography and realms of the Elves in Beleriand. Also, we receive a lesson in Dwarvish pronunciation from a listener and get up close and personal with a personal pronoun. And what’s that voice in the distance? Sounds like a very deep woodwind instrument.

For more information on the Khuzdul language and insights on all things Dwarvish, visit The Dwarrow Scholar (dwarrowscholar.com) by listener Roy.

For more insights on Tolkien’s work and his medieval literary and linguistic influences, visit the blog Alas, not me (alasnotme.blogspot.com) by listener Tom H.

Also in this episode, Shawn brings up a poem by Tolkien that cycles through the seasons, but whose title he can’t quite remember. The poem is “The Trees of Kortirion” (a.k.a.”Kortirion among the Trees”) from “The Cottage of Lost Play” in The Book of Lost Tales Part One.

Listen to the episode here or on YouTube

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Recommended Reading:

Tolkien, J. R. R. The Silmarillion (Mariner Books, paperback) pp. 118-124, “Of Beleriand and its Realms”

Tolkien, J. R. R. (Christopher Tolkien, ed.) The Book of Lost Tales Part One (The History of Middle-earth, Vol. 1) (Del Rey, paperback)

Carpenter, Humphrey. J.R.R. Tolkien: A Biography (Houghton Mifflin, paperback)

4 thoughts on “024 – Territories

  1. On the masculinity of rivers: The Anglo-Saxon word that came to my mind was “flód”. JRRT liked that word enough to name a river “Greyflood”.

    • Excellent suggestion, thanks! We now have at least as many masculine nouns in Anglo-Saxon as we have feminine ones, and you’re right — we know Tolkien was fond of that one.

  2. On Treebeard’s Song of Beleriand: I loved your Treebeard voice, Alan–even down to your Entish breaths! I found a lovely blog page that pictures the trees in Treebeard’s tune, along with a Beleriandish (outlandish?) map where X sometimes marks the spot. It includes a link to hear Christopher Lee sing Treebeard’s lyrics, but I’m afraid by the time I heard him sing, I was quite spoiled by your melodic reading. Here’s the blog post: http://crocordile.tumblr.com/post/132227710488/crocordile-treebeards-song-of-beleriand-sung

    • That is far too kind, Allacin — thank you! That’s a fascinating blog post and it’s wonderful to hear Sir Christopher Lee’s melodic interpretation — and let’s just say that if I had to *sing* that instead of *read* it, I wouldn’t have been compared favorably. 🙂

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