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Re: [mythsoc] BBC NEWS | Magazine | The Somme and Tolkien

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  • WendellWag@aol.com
    In a message dated 7/4/2006 11:32:58 A.M. Eastern Standard Time, Stolzi@comcast.net writes: Some scholar ought to beard Mr Waddington-Feather and ask to =see=
    Message 1 of 15 , Jul 4, 2006
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      In a message dated 7/4/2006 11:32:58 A.M. Eastern Standard Time,
      Stolzi@... writes:



      Some scholar ought to beard Mr Waddington-Feather and ask to =see= his
      correspondence with Michael Tolkien.





      Why don't you contact the BBC (either by E-mail or by letter) and point out
      all the problems that you and others in this thread have mentioned so far?
      You've made a good case that the author of the article hasn't acknowledged her
      sources and that the letter by Waddington-Feather contains a rather dubious
      story supposedly acquired from Michael Tolkien. You're the one who's
      uncovered the mistakes here, so it should be you who points them out. No need to be
      shy about this.

      Wendell


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Croft, Janet B.
      As far as Tolkien s horsemanship skills are concerned - in the summer of 1912, Tolkien enrolled in King Edward s Horse, a territorial regiment, and spent two
      Message 2 of 15 , Jul 5, 2006
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        As far as Tolkien's horsemanship skills are concerned - in the summer of
        1912, Tolkien enrolled in King Edward's Horse, a territorial regiment,
        and spent two weeks in a camp in Kent in training, but resigned after a
        few months.



        A most informative article on Tolkien's horsemanship is Helen
        Armstrong's "It Bore Me Away: Tolkien as Horseman" (Mallorn 30 [1993
        Sept] pp 29-31). In it she recounts that Priscilla Tolkien told her at
        Oxonmoot in 1990 that Tolkien learned to ride as part of his basic
        officer training. Armstrong's conclusion is that Tolkien's depiction of
        horses is that of someone who did not grow up around them, but grew to
        love them after military training as a young man, though having little
        opportunity to ride after that.



        Signalling officers were trained in many methods of delivering messages
        by hand, including by horse, motorcycle, and bicycle. I have a copy of
        the 1914 training manual for signaling used by the British Army, and the
        chapter on Despatch Riding includes guidelines on when and how to use
        horses, how many miles between halts, and so on.



        (And I can see that if I ever get a chance to do a second edition of my
        book, I need to add an index entry for horses and/or cavalry!)



        Janet Brennan Croft
        Editor of Mythlore http://www.mythsoc.org/mythlore.html
        Committee Chair, Mythcon37, http://www.mythsoc.org/mythcon37.html and
        http://faculty-staff.ou.edu/C/Janet.B.Croft-1/ProgressReport1.htm

        ________________________________

        From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
        Of John D Rateliff
        Sent: Monday, July 03, 2006 6:00 PM
        To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [mythsoc] BBC NEWS | Magazine | The Somme and Tolkien



        The "Schoolmaster" would have been Michael Tolkien.
        Pretty much a work of fiction, I fear. Whoever came up with that
        story doesn't take into account No Man's Land, with its deep mud and
        multiple barriers of barbed wire -- not something a horse could
        casually gallop across.
        As for "Uhlans", wikipedia says some fought in the early weeks of
        the war (e.g., summer/fall 1914) but were then dismounted once trench
        warfare began or else transferred to the Eastern Front, where calvary
        was still actually effective.
        There are also minor quibbles, but let them pass. Clearly
        apocryphal.

        On Jul 3, 2006, at 12:53 PM, Stolzi wrote:
        > http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm
        <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm>
        >
        > Interesting, but no mention of John Garth's book, though I would
        > bet she has
        > read it, or at least heard him speak.
        >
        > Also I have some trouble with the comment (presently at the bottom)
        > by the
        > Revd John Waddington-Feather. Even if he does give Tolkien's son
        > (which
        > one?) as his authority.
        >
        > A signals officer riding around behind the lines on a cavalry horse?
        > Demonic Uhlans? Reeeeally?
        >
        > I suspect the scene if it ever occurred, occurred primarily, as
        > well as
        > secondarily, in one of Tolkien's nightmares.
        >
        > And if the story is true, why has it never been heard before - by me,
        > anyway? Have any of you heard it?
        >
        > Diamond Proudbrook

        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]





        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Jonathan Michael Reiter
        Resigned after a few months? What could have been the matter? To quote Patti Smith, Horses, Horses, Horses, Horses, Horses, Horses! Land - Horses/Land of a
        Message 3 of 15 , Jul 5, 2006
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          Resigned after a few months? What could have been the matter?
          To quote Patti Smith, "Horses, Horses, Horses, Horses, Horses, Horses!" Land - Horses/Land of a Thousand Dances/La Mer De, 1976.
          Jonathan Michael Reiter
          jmr
          ps; How can you tell I just dig Horses? I also dig Cats and Dogs.
          ----- Original Message -----
          From: Croft, Janet B.
          To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Wednesday, July 05, 2006 7:20 AM
          Subject: RE: [mythsoc] BBC NEWS | Magazine | The Somme and Tolkien


          As far as Tolkien's horsemanship skills are concerned - in the summer of
          1912, Tolkien enrolled in King Edward's Horse, a territorial regiment,
          and spent two weeks in a camp in Kent in training, but resigned after a
          few months.

          A most informative article on Tolkien's horsemanship is Helen
          Armstrong's "It Bore Me Away: Tolkien as Horseman" (Mallorn 30 [1993
          Sept] pp 29-31). In it she recounts that Priscilla Tolkien told her at
          Oxonmoot in 1990 that Tolkien learned to ride as part of his basic
          officer training. Armstrong's conclusion is that Tolkien's depiction of
          horses is that of someone who did not grow up around them, but grew to
          love them after military training as a young man, though having little
          opportunity to ride after that.

          Signalling officers were trained in many methods of delivering messages
          by hand, including by horse, motorcycle, and bicycle. I have a copy of
          the 1914 training manual for signaling used by the British Army, and the
          chapter on Despatch Riding includes guidelines on when and how to use
          horses, how many miles between halts, and so on.

          (And I can see that if I ever get a chance to do a second edition of my
          book, I need to add an index entry for horses and/or cavalry!)

          Janet Brennan Croft
          Editor of Mythlore http://www.mythsoc.org/mythlore.html
          Committee Chair, Mythcon37, http://www.mythsoc.org/mythcon37.html and
          http://faculty-staff.ou.edu/C/Janet.B.Croft-1/ProgressReport1.htm

          ________________________________

          From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
          Of John D Rateliff
          Sent: Monday, July 03, 2006 6:00 PM
          To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: Re: [mythsoc] BBC NEWS | Magazine | The Somme and Tolkien

          The "Schoolmaster" would have been Michael Tolkien.
          Pretty much a work of fiction, I fear. Whoever came up with that
          story doesn't take into account No Man's Land, with its deep mud and
          multiple barriers of barbed wire -- not something a horse could
          casually gallop across.
          As for "Uhlans", wikipedia says some fought in the early weeks of
          the war (e.g., summer/fall 1914) but were then dismounted once trench
          warfare began or else transferred to the Eastern Front, where calvary
          was still actually effective.
          There are also minor quibbles, but let them pass. Clearly
          apocryphal.

          On Jul 3, 2006, at 12:53 PM, Stolzi wrote:
          > http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm
          <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm>
          >
          > Interesting, but no mention of John Garth's book, though I would
          > bet she has
          > read it, or at least heard him speak.
          >
          > Also I have some trouble with the comment (presently at the bottom)
          > by the
          > Revd John Waddington-Feather. Even if he does give Tolkien's son
          > (which
          > one?) as his authority.
          >
          > A signals officer riding around behind the lines on a cavalry horse?
          > Demonic Uhlans? Reeeeally?
          >
          > I suspect the scene if it ever occurred, occurred primarily, as
          > well as
          > secondarily, in one of Tolkien's nightmares.
          >
          > And if the story is true, why has it never been heard before - by me,
          > anyway? Have any of you heard it?
          >
          > Diamond Proudbrook

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]






          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Croft, Janet B.
          Well, let me quote from my original source, the Humphrey Carpenter biography: In the summer vacation of 1912 Tolkien went into camp for a fortnight with King
          Message 4 of 15 , Jul 5, 2006
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            Well, let me quote from my original source, the Humphrey Carpenter
            biography:



            "In the summer vacation of 1912 Tolkien went into camp for a fortnight
            with King Edward's Horse, a territorial cavalry regiment in which he had
            recently enrolled. He enjoyed the experience of galloping across the
            Kentish plains - the camp was near Folkestone - but it was a wet and
            windy fortnight and the tents were often blown down in the night. This
            taste of life on horseback was enough for him, and he resigned from the
            regiment after a few months" (p.58)



            That's as detailed as it gets, unfortunately. But I suppose rough
            walking and riding might be more pleasurable if there's a pub at the end
            rather than a drafty and uncooperative tent...



            Janet Brennan Croft
            Editor of Mythlore http://www.mythsoc.org/mythlore.html
            Committee Chair, Mythcon37, http://www.mythsoc.org/mythcon37.html and
            http://faculty-staff.ou.edu/C/Janet.B.Croft-1/ProgressReport1.htm

            ________________________________

            From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
            Of Jonathan Michael Reiter
            Sent: Wednesday, July 05, 2006 10:00 AM
            To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: Re: [mythsoc] BBC NEWS | Magazine | The Somme and Tolkien



            Resigned after a few months? What could have been the matter?
            To quote Patti Smith, "Horses, Horses, Horses, Horses, Horses, Horses!"
            Land - Horses/Land of a Thousand Dances/La Mer De, 1976.
            Jonathan Michael Reiter
            jmr
            ps; How can you tell I just dig Horses? I also dig Cats and Dogs.
            ----- Original Message -----
            From: Croft, Janet B.
            To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com <mailto:mythsoc%40yahoogroups.com>
            Sent: Wednesday, July 05, 2006 7:20 AM
            Subject: RE: [mythsoc] BBC NEWS | Magazine | The Somme and Tolkien

            As far as Tolkien's horsemanship skills are concerned - in the summer of
            1912, Tolkien enrolled in King Edward's Horse, a territorial regiment,
            and spent two weeks in a camp in Kent in training, but resigned after a
            few months.

            A most informative article on Tolkien's horsemanship is Helen
            Armstrong's "It Bore Me Away: Tolkien as Horseman" (Mallorn 30 [1993
            Sept] pp 29-31). In it she recounts that Priscilla Tolkien told her at
            Oxonmoot in 1990 that Tolkien learned to ride as part of his basic
            officer training. Armstrong's conclusion is that Tolkien's depiction of
            horses is that of someone who did not grow up around them, but grew to
            love them after military training as a young man, though having little
            opportunity to ride after that.

            Signalling officers were trained in many methods of delivering messages
            by hand, including by horse, motorcycle, and bicycle. I have a copy of
            the 1914 training manual for signaling used by the British Army, and the
            chapter on Despatch Riding includes guidelines on when and how to use
            horses, how many miles between halts, and so on.

            (And I can see that if I ever get a chance to do a second edition of my
            book, I need to add an index entry for horses and/or cavalry!)

            Janet Brennan Croft
            Editor of Mythlore http://www.mythsoc.org/mythlore.html
            <http://www.mythsoc.org/mythlore.html>
            Committee Chair, Mythcon37, http://www.mythsoc.org/mythcon37.html
            <http://www.mythsoc.org/mythcon37.html> and
            http://faculty-staff.ou.edu/C/Janet.B.Croft-1/ProgressReport1.htm
            <http://faculty-staff.ou.edu/C/Janet.B.Croft-1/ProgressReport1.htm>

            ________________________________

            From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com <mailto:mythsoc%40yahoogroups.com>
            [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com <mailto:mythsoc%40yahoogroups.com> ] On
            Behalf
            Of John D Rateliff
            Sent: Monday, July 03, 2006 6:00 PM
            To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com <mailto:mythsoc%40yahoogroups.com>
            Subject: Re: [mythsoc] BBC NEWS | Magazine | The Somme and Tolkien

            The "Schoolmaster" would have been Michael Tolkien.
            Pretty much a work of fiction, I fear. Whoever came up with that
            story doesn't take into account No Man's Land, with its deep mud and
            multiple barriers of barbed wire -- not something a horse could
            casually gallop across.
            As for "Uhlans", wikipedia says some fought in the early weeks of
            the war (e.g., summer/fall 1914) but were then dismounted once trench
            warfare began or else transferred to the Eastern Front, where calvary
            was still actually effective.
            There are also minor quibbles, but let them pass. Clearly
            apocryphal.

            On Jul 3, 2006, at 12:53 PM, Stolzi wrote:
            > http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm
            <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm>
            <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm
            <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm> >
            >
            > Interesting, but no mention of John Garth's book, though I would
            > bet she has
            > read it, or at least heard him speak.
            >
            > Also I have some trouble with the comment (presently at the bottom)
            > by the
            > Revd John Waddington-Feather. Even if he does give Tolkien's son
            > (which
            > one?) as his authority.
            >
            > A signals officer riding around behind the lines on a cavalry horse?
            > Demonic Uhlans? Reeeeally?
            >
            > I suspect the scene if it ever occurred, occurred primarily, as
            > well as
            > secondarily, in one of Tolkien's nightmares.
            >
            > And if the story is true, why has it never been heard before - by me,
            > anyway? Have any of you heard it?
            >
            > Diamond Proudbrook

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]





            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Jonathan Michael Reiter
            Maybe that was for the better. Tolkien was definitely a scholar and not a warrior... Jonathan Michael Reiter jmr ... From: Croft, Janet B. To:
            Message 5 of 15 , Jul 5, 2006
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              Maybe that was for the better. Tolkien was definitely a scholar and not a warrior...
              Jonathan Michael Reiter
              jmr
              ----- Original Message -----
              From: Croft, Janet B.
              To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
              Sent: Wednesday, July 05, 2006 11:58 AM
              Subject: RE: [mythsoc] BBC NEWS | Magazine | The Somme and Tolkien


              Well, let me quote from my original source, the Humphrey Carpenter
              biography:

              "In the summer vacation of 1912 Tolkien went into camp for a fortnight
              with King Edward's Horse, a territorial cavalry regiment in which he had
              recently enrolled. He enjoyed the experience of galloping across the
              Kentish plains - the camp was near Folkestone - but it was a wet and
              windy fortnight and the tents were often blown down in the night. This
              taste of life on horseback was enough for him, and he resigned from the
              regiment after a few months" (p.58)

              That's as detailed as it gets, unfortunately. But I suppose rough
              walking and riding might be more pleasurable if there's a pub at the end
              rather than a drafty and uncooperative tent...

              Janet Brennan Croft
              Editor of Mythlore http://www.mythsoc.org/mythlore.html
              Committee Chair, Mythcon37, http://www.mythsoc.org/mythcon37.html and
              http://faculty-staff.ou.edu/C/Janet.B.Croft-1/ProgressReport1.htm

              ________________________________

              From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
              Of Jonathan Michael Reiter
              Sent: Wednesday, July 05, 2006 10:00 AM
              To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: Re: [mythsoc] BBC NEWS | Magazine | The Somme and Tolkien

              Resigned after a few months? What could have been the matter?
              To quote Patti Smith, "Horses, Horses, Horses, Horses, Horses, Horses!"
              Land - Horses/Land of a Thousand Dances/La Mer De, 1976.
              Jonathan Michael Reiter
              jmr
              ps; How can you tell I just dig Horses? I also dig Cats and Dogs.
              ----- Original Message -----
              From: Croft, Janet B.
              To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com <mailto:mythsoc%40yahoogroups.com>
              Sent: Wednesday, July 05, 2006 7:20 AM
              Subject: RE: [mythsoc] BBC NEWS | Magazine | The Somme and Tolkien

              As far as Tolkien's horsemanship skills are concerned - in the summer of
              1912, Tolkien enrolled in King Edward's Horse, a territorial regiment,
              and spent two weeks in a camp in Kent in training, but resigned after a
              few months.

              A most informative article on Tolkien's horsemanship is Helen
              Armstrong's "It Bore Me Away: Tolkien as Horseman" (Mallorn 30 [1993
              Sept] pp 29-31). In it she recounts that Priscilla Tolkien told her at
              Oxonmoot in 1990 that Tolkien learned to ride as part of his basic
              officer training. Armstrong's conclusion is that Tolkien's depiction of
              horses is that of someone who did not grow up around them, but grew to
              love them after military training as a young man, though having little
              opportunity to ride after that.

              Signalling officers were trained in many methods of delivering messages
              by hand, including by horse, motorcycle, and bicycle. I have a copy of
              the 1914 training manual for signaling used by the British Army, and the
              chapter on Despatch Riding includes guidelines on when and how to use
              horses, how many miles between halts, and so on.

              (And I can see that if I ever get a chance to do a second edition of my
              book, I need to add an index entry for horses and/or cavalry!)

              Janet Brennan Croft
              Editor of Mythlore http://www.mythsoc.org/mythlore.html
              <http://www.mythsoc.org/mythlore.html>
              Committee Chair, Mythcon37, http://www.mythsoc.org/mythcon37.html
              <http://www.mythsoc.org/mythcon37.html> and
              http://faculty-staff.ou.edu/C/Janet.B.Croft-1/ProgressReport1.htm
              <http://faculty-staff.ou.edu/C/Janet.B.Croft-1/ProgressReport1.htm>

              ________________________________

              From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com <mailto:mythsoc%40yahoogroups.com>
              [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com <mailto:mythsoc%40yahoogroups.com> ] On
              Behalf
              Of John D Rateliff
              Sent: Monday, July 03, 2006 6:00 PM
              To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com <mailto:mythsoc%40yahoogroups.com>
              Subject: Re: [mythsoc] BBC NEWS | Magazine | The Somme and Tolkien

              The "Schoolmaster" would have been Michael Tolkien.
              Pretty much a work of fiction, I fear. Whoever came up with that
              story doesn't take into account No Man's Land, with its deep mud and
              multiple barriers of barbed wire -- not something a horse could
              casually gallop across.
              As for "Uhlans", wikipedia says some fought in the early weeks of
              the war (e.g., summer/fall 1914) but were then dismounted once trench
              warfare began or else transferred to the Eastern Front, where calvary
              was still actually effective.
              There are also minor quibbles, but let them pass. Clearly
              apocryphal.

              On Jul 3, 2006, at 12:53 PM, Stolzi wrote:
              > http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm
              <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm>
              <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm
              <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm> >
              >
              > Interesting, but no mention of John Garth's book, though I would
              > bet she has
              > read it, or at least heard him speak.
              >
              > Also I have some trouble with the comment (presently at the bottom)
              > by the
              > Revd John Waddington-Feather. Even if he does give Tolkien's son
              > (which
              > one?) as his authority.
              >
              > A signals officer riding around behind the lines on a cavalry horse?
              > Demonic Uhlans? Reeeeally?
              >
              > I suspect the scene if it ever occurred, occurred primarily, as
              > well as
              > secondarily, in one of Tolkien's nightmares.
              >
              > And if the story is true, why has it never been heard before - by me,
              > anyway? Have any of you heard it?
              >
              > Diamond Proudbrook

              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]






              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Merlin DeTardo
              Did anything further come of last summer s questionable report of Tolkien s equestrian adventure on the Western Front? This week at TheOneRing.net, there is a
              Message 6 of 15 , Dec 12, 2006
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                Did anything further come of last summer's questionable report of
                Tolkien's equestrian adventure on the Western Front?

                This week at TheOneRing.net, there is a discussion of the use that
                Tolkien makes of horses in LotR; the first part of the discussion
                appears here:

                http://www.theonering.net/rumour_mill/rpg/viewer/readingroom/457D98CE
                00026287.html

                One respondent to that thread noted the Rev. John Waddington-
                Feather's story. There as here, some people expressed doubts (and
                having subsequently found the discussion here, I have posted a link
                in the TORn thread to this list's archives, recommending
                particularly John and Janet's responses). One participant in the
                new discussion has written to Waddington-Feather for further
                information (no response yet), but had someone here (or elsewhere,
                if you know) already followed up on that angle? Diamond?

                -Merlin DeTardo


                >>---"Stolzi" <Stolzi@...> wrote:
                >> http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5133000.stm
                >> Also I have some trouble with the comment (presently at the
                bottom) by the Revd John Waddington-Feather. Even if he does give
                Tolkien's son (which one?) as his authority.
                >> A signals officer riding around behind the lines on a cavalry
                horse? Demonic Uhlans? Reeeeally?
                >> I suspect the scene if it ever occurred, occurred primarily, as
                well as secondarily, in one of Tolkien's nightmares.
                >> And if the story is true, why has it never been heard before -
                by me, anyway? Have any of you heard it?
                >> Diamond Proudbrook
              • Carl F. Hostetter
                Merlin, I m afraid that Diamond Proudbuck , whom you quote in this matter, was Mary Stolzenbach, who passed away last summer. (I hoped to convey this to you
                Message 7 of 15 , Dec 13, 2006
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                  Merlin,

                  I'm afraid that "Diamond Proudbuck", whom you quote in this matter,
                  was Mary Stolzenbach, who passed away last summer.

                  (I hoped to convey this to you privately, but your reply-to e-mail
                  address in your post (<emptyD@...>) appears to be fictitious.)

                  Carl
                • Merlin DeTardo
                  Carl and everyone: Please accept my apologies for addressing the late Mary Stolzenbach -- I had no idea. My belated condolences to all who knew her. Carl,
                  Message 8 of 15 , Dec 13, 2006
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                    Carl and everyone:

                    Please accept my apologies for addressing the late Mary Stolzenbach --
                    I had no idea. My belated condolences to all who knew her.

                    Carl, thank you for letting me know.

                    -Merlin DeTardo



                    P.S. My e-mail address is not fictitious; as Carl notes it
                    begins "emptyD", and it ends with "@...". -MTD


                    >>--"Carl F. Hostetter" <Aelfwine@...> wrote:
                    >> Merlin,
                    >> I'm afraid that "Diamond Proudbuck", whom you quote in this
                    matter, was Mary Stolzenbach, who passed away last summer.
                    >> (I hoped to convey this to you privately, but your reply-to e-mail
                    address in your post (<emptyD@...>) appears to be fictitious.)
                    >> Carl
                  • William Cloud Hicklin
                    The Rev. Mr. Waddington-Feather did reply to a poster on The Barrow-Downs forum. I m pretty certain that he s not a crank or a liar, that he really is
                    Message 9 of 15 , Dec 13, 2006
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                      The Rev. Mr. Waddington-Feather did reply to a poster on The
                      Barrow-Downs forum. I'm pretty certain that he's not a crank
                      or a liar, that he really is relating what he remembers of
                      what Michael T. told him years ago. The problem is that he
                      may have misheard or misremembered, that Michael may have
                      misheard or misremembered, and moreover Michael apparently
                      wasn't above spinning a yarn.


                      I doubt that any such event happened in waking life. Not only
                      was Tolkien's duty and the Somme battlefield such that the
                      whole story is unlikely in the extreme, but I've also
                      determined that the 1 and 2 Leib-Husaren (Totenkopf) were
                      nowhere near the Somme in 1916. (That leaves the 17er
                      Braunschweig- anybody know where they were?)

                      There is a possibility that Tolkien had a nightmare along
                      those lines (although I suppose in a classic dream pattern
                      that final jump would have led to awakening, not landing).
                      Perhaps the subconscious source was war propaganda. After all,
                      the association of skull-and-crossbones badges with German
                      cavalry must have come from somewhere: and Uhlans* figured
                      prominently in "rape of Belgium" stories. In fact, the story
                      has some of the flavor of the "tales from the front" the
                      British papers loved to print in the early days of the war,
                      especially in connection with Mons (where there was a great
                      deal of cavalry activity). Additionally, in fall 1914 German
                      cavalry still wore their busbys and shakoes, whereas by mid-
                      1916 they had gone to standard helmets.

                      *Uhlan is a Polish loan-word for lancer, a term which most
                      German armies adopted during or after the Napoleonic wars.
                      However, in 1914 the IGS issued lances to all cavalry
                      regiments, and withdrew sabres soon thereafter; Allied
                      soldiers understandably called all German horse "Uhlans,"
                      regardless of regiment.
                    • Merlin DeTardo
                      Thank you for that information. I d not visited the Barrow-Downs forum before. That discussion can be found here:
                      Message 10 of 15 , Dec 13, 2006
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                        Thank you for that information. I'd not visited the Barrow-Downs
                        forum before. That discussion can be found here:

                        http://www.forum.barrowdowns.com/showthread.php?t=12979&page=1

                        The correspondence from Fr. Waddington-Feather appears in message
                        #31, posted July 5, 2006.

                        I think one small correction should be made to Waddington-Feather's
                        remarks posted there: he writes that Tolkien "was Professor of
                        English at Leeds just before I went there", but Tolkien left in 1925,
                        and Waddington-Feather, b. 1933, would have attended in the early
                        1950s. His larger point about Tolkien's lasting influence on Leeds's
                        English Dept. (at that time) apparently stands, if I correctly
                        remember Tom Shippey's comments on that point.

                        -Merlin DeTardo


                        >>---"William Cloud Hicklin" <solicitr@...> wrote:
                        >> The Rev. Mr. Waddington-Feather did reply to a poster on The
                        Barrow-Downs forum. I'm pretty certain that he's not a crank or a
                        liar, that he really is relating what he remembers of what Michael T.
                        told him years ago. The problem is that he may have misheard or
                        misremembered, that Michael may have misheard or misremembered, and
                        moreover Michael apparently wasn't above spinning a yarn.
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