Well, "Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbits" says, 'Fear and wonder, maybe, enlarged
him in the hobbit's [Sam's] eyes, but the Mumak of Harad was indeed a beast
of vast bulk, and the like of him does not walk now in Middle Earth; his kin
that live still in latter days are but memories of his girth and majesty."
Tolkien (Letters, p. 77) says, 'A large elephant of prehistoric size, a
war-elephant of the Swertings, is loose, and Sam has gratified a life-long
wish to see an Oliphant...'
So, maybe they're at a point in the "evolution" of modern elephants. More
likely, I think, they're a part of Tolkien's subcreation, like hobbits,
wargs, and the huge eagles--creatures that have much in common with ones
that live in our primary world, but yet have their own particular character.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Friday, November 10, 2000 4:55 PM
Subject: Re: [mythsoc] WILL RINGS SHOOT BEYOND WRAP?
> In a message dated 11/10/00 10:07:22 AM Central Standard Time,
> verba001@... writes:
> > The site also reported that crews have been shooting around Wellington,
> > Zealand, using elephants to stand in for the "oliphaunts" that appear
> > J.R.R. Tolkien's Rings novels.
> But =aren't= they elephants? Middle Earth doesn't go back to the times
> the woolly mammoth, does it?
> Mary S
> The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org