038 – I Will Choose Free Will

We continue our trilogy of episodes on Chapter 21 of The Silmarillion and Tolkien’s tragic hero Túrin Turambar. Túrin comes to Nargothrond with Gwindor, then quickly surpasses his friend in the favor of the king and the love of the king’s daughter. Túrin’s military advice brings early victory, but his deeds soon draw the attention of Morgoth, who responds with a massive army led by the dragon Glaurung. We begin examining Túrin’s choices, tally up his many name changes, and earn the wrath of Hugo Weaving fans everywhere.

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Recommended Reading:

Tolkien, J. R. R. The Silmarillion (Mariner Books, paperback) pp. 209-217, “Of Túrin Turambar”

Tolkien, J. R. R. (Christopher Tolkien, ed.) The Children of Húrin (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, paperback)


2 thoughts on “038 – I Will Choose Free Will

  1. Now this is what podcasts are for. Like most people (I imagine) I have never read The Silmarillion out loud. When Túrin and the King ride out to battle, on the page the sentence looks like any other. But when I heard you read it, it was full of Anglo-Saxon alliteration: “Then the warriors of Nargothrond went forth, …
    And tall and terrible on that day looked Túrin,
    And the heart of the host was upheld,
    As he rode on the right hand of Orodreth.”

    The initial “O” isn’t perfect, but the momentum of the two previous lines carries it through. And I never would have noticed it. Bravo, y’all!

    • Thanks! I’m glad you picked up on that, because it crossed my mind only as I was reading it. It’s incredible how much you can pick up in Tolkien’s work when you read it aloud. Now that you mention the little problem with Orodreth, though, I’m starting to think that name is actually meant to be pronounced with the stress on ‘-rod-‘, which would alliterate properly with ‘rode’ and ‘right’. Sindarin usually puts the stress on the penult when the penult is long, and a vowel is usually long when followed by two consonants. I’ll need to dig into that pronunciation.

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