A Conversation for The Lord of the Rings
TylerMoody Started conversation Oct 15, 2004
I may be mistaking LoTR mythology with that of other authors; please correct me if I am wrong. I thought that the elves were eternal creatures - if they were not murdered or slain in battle, they would live "forever", or at least until they sailed westward.
The journey westward is a topic I'd like to discuss as well. I had always taken the sailing at the metaphoric level, as an accepted and volutary death when an elf felt that he was done with the world of Middle-Earth. However, there was mention of a land across the sea (heaven?). I am eager to hear the opinions of other Researchers on this.
Luinelen Posted Oct 15, 2004
You are right, elves don't die of old age, but the article says that (that's what immortal means). Some parts of what I have read seem to imply that if they die in battle or accident, they get reborn or something like that, but I'm not sure about it. All of this doesn't apply if they have chosen the way of the humans like Luthien Tinuviel and Arwen did.
There is a land across the sea. Many of the elves (or their grandparents) have been to the land across the sea and come back to Middle Earth. You can read about it in the Silmarillion.
Lash LeRue Posted Oct 15, 2004
The land across the sea is Valinor land of gods where the three species of eleves live. Remember there is only one kind of elf in LoTR,the Noldor.There are two other species of elf across the seas. On the subject of rebirth they die and are reborn in a latter desendant of there kin,so the population of elfs stay the same always.
Gnomon - time to move on Posted Oct 15, 2004
The land across the sea was called Valinor, but it was not the home of gods. The Valar, while seeming like gods to us humans because of their superhuman powers, did not consider themselves to be gods. They were servants of the one true god, and did only his will.
When elves died, Tolkien says that their spirits went west and reappeared as the same person in Valinor, but he was never very specific about how exactly this happened.
The elves in Middle Earth were divided into High Elves, who had been to Valinor or were descended from ones who had been, and Wood Elves, who had never been to Valinor. The High Elves surpassed the Wood Elves in knowledge and skill. THe Noldor were the High Elves who came back to Middle Earth (the rest of them stayed in Valinor).
Why not read about it in the Silmarillion entry (A2757846)?
Farlander Posted Oct 16, 2004
On the subject of elves dying - I remember reading as well, that they don't die (if not inflicted with fatal wounds, that is!) unless they become weary of life.
I think in the beginning Valinor was located somewhere on earth. But sometime 'round the Second Age (I think) the Valar moved it to a place off earth, and only Elven ships that could sail a straight path could reach it. I could be wrong, though.... it's been yonks since I read LOTR.
TylerMoody Posted Oct 17, 2004
Thanks for the clarifications! I've only read the trilogy, so I was underinformed.
Rod, Keeper of Pointless and/or funny discussions or statements Posted Oct 25, 2004
Valinor was indeed located on earth and removed from it during the second age when humans (the Numenorans or Dunedan) decided to invade it because they wanted eternal life as well. Elves can still reach it by sea and do so when they tire of life in Middle Earth, or when the 'calling' of the sea and the land beyond becomes to strong. But they don't die when they do this(during the first age some came back to live in Middle Earth).
>On the subject of rebirth they die and are reborn in a latter desendant of there kin,so the population of elfs stay the same always.(post 3)
Not true, the elvish population does increas, only very slowly. This is because they tend to live quite long lives and therefore don't get children until they are a few hundred years old. And usually they don't have many kids anyway
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