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1161Re: [Lambengolmor] An experiment in translation

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  • Helios De Rosario Martínez
    Aug 30, 2014
      In my first message of this thread I wrote:

      > first, although I don't know the exact context of the poem we are
      > working with, one could say that it is a personal lament for the
      > industrialization of Tolkien's country, rather than a poem set in
      > Tolkien's fiction.


      > _Istarion_: 'of wizards'. Genitive form of _Istari_ 'wizards'. The
      > obvious choice, shared by all four versions. I suppose that Tolkien
      > was using "wizards" here as a metaphor, rather than an allusion to
      > fictional wizards of the Secondary World. He seems to refer to the
      > "ones who knew" (cf. the gloss in WPP:119) in his time: the
      > industrial society that fomented progress at the cost of nature; say,
      > the transposition of Saruman to our modern Primary World.

      When I wrote that, I was not aware of this news in the Tolkien Society's


      There they comment on the"unpublished poem", where "Tolkien laments the
      devastation of Rotterdam during the Second World War". Then they cite
      other words by Tolkien, but obviously this also applies to the verses we
      are working with.

      The Rotterdam Blitz was in 1940, 18 years before Tolkien's speech. Not
      exactly "twenty years", as mentioned in the first verse of Tolkien's
      poem, but quite approximately. And the general message of the poem fits
      quite well in that context (including the withering breath of the
      cold-hearted wizards, which could also be seen as politicians or the
      heads of armies).

      Best regards
      Helios De Rosario
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