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Re: [mythsoc] re: Tolkien rationalizations

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  • JP Massar
    ... In the index to The Silmarillion, the entry for Sauron reads Sauron. The Abhorred ... which I take to mean that the translation of Sauron has to do with
    Message 1 of 8 , Sep 24, 2002
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      >
      >
      >Your solution to the contradiction depends on "Sauron" not being that
      >character's "right name." And depending on what "right name" means exactly
      >in Tolkien, maybe it isn't. But it's clear from context that when Aragorn
      >says "right name," he means "Sauron." So he's evidently mistaken, or
      >something, but he's certainly on the right track; since the name means
      >"abominable" (according to Foster), it's not one he'd be likely to use a
      >lot.

      In the index to The Silmarillion, the entry for Sauron reads

      "Sauron. 'The Abhorred'..."

      which I take to mean that the translation of Sauron has to do with
      abhorred, not abominable.

      > So when the Mouth says "Sauron," it's not all that far off from "that
      >really evil dude" after all.

      In the Valenquenta, it is said

      "...the spirit whom the Eldar called Sauron..."

      But it also says, paraphrasing, that 'Melkor' was the name of the Enemy,
      but the Noldor would not utter it, and called him 'Morgoth'.

      But no analogous set of two names is provided for Sauron.


      All in all, I suspect that Tolkien just didn't notice the contradiction and
      had he realized it would have changed the title 'The Mouth of Sauron'
      to something else.
    • David S. Bratman
      ... Foster wrote after _The Silmarillion_ was published, so I don t take this as a correction, unless later information (which I haven t checked) specifically
      Message 2 of 8 , Sep 25, 2002
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        At 11:13 PM 9/24/2002 , JP Massar wrote:
        >
        >>Your solution to the contradiction depends on "Sauron" not being that
        >>character's "right name." And depending on what "right name" means exactly
        >>in Tolkien, maybe it isn't. But it's clear from context that when Aragorn
        >>says "right name," he means "Sauron." So he's evidently mistaken, or
        >>something, but he's certainly on the right track; since the name means
        >>"abominable" (according to Foster), it's not one he'd be likely to use a
        >>lot.
        >
        >In the index to The Silmarillion, the entry for Sauron reads
        >
        >"Sauron. 'The Abhorred'..."
        >
        >which I take to mean that the translation of Sauron has to do with
        >abhorred, not abominable.

        Foster wrote after _The Silmarillion_ was published, so I don't take this
        as a correction, unless later information (which I haven't checked)
        specifically clarifies this question. It's not necessarily contradictory:
        I'm inclined from this alone to take "abominable" as the translation, and
        "The Abhorred" as an epithet. Not that, apart from part of speech, their
        meanings differ all that strikingly - I could conceive of a foreign word
        which could adequately be translated by both English words.

        >> So when the Mouth says "Sauron," it's not all that far off from "that
        >>really evil dude" after all.
        >
        >In the Valenquenta, it is said
        >
        >"...the spirit whom the Eldar called Sauron..."
        >
        >But it also says, paraphrasing, that 'Melkor' was the name of the Enemy,
        >but the Noldor would not utter it, and called him 'Morgoth'.
        >
        >But no analogous set of two names is provided for Sauron.

        Since Morgoth (which means "Enemy") was not the name that being started out
        with, one can presume the same of Sauron (knowing what that means), even if
        we don't know what earlier name he might have had. In many of Tolkien's
        First Age papers, Sauron is referred to as Gorthaur and Thu, but these too
        are Elvish epithets with rude meanings.

        >All in all, I suspect that Tolkien just didn't notice the contradiction and
        >had he realized it would have changed the title 'The Mouth of Sauron'
        >to something else.

        Quite possibly. That's what Tolkien might have said had the matter been
        pointed out to him. I think it also possible that he could have said that
        Aragorn was simply mistaken (which has the advantage of being an "internal"
        explanation).

        - David Bratman
      • JP Massar
        ... No, the introduction to the Index on the Silmarillion states that words appearing in inverted commas are translations, and provides an example analogous to
        Message 3 of 8 , Sep 25, 2002
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          >
          >
          >Foster wrote after _The Silmarillion_ was published, so I don't take this
          >as a correction, unless later information (which I haven't checked)
          >specifically clarifies this question. It's not necessarily contradictory:
          >I'm inclined from this alone to take "abominable" as the translation, and
          >"The Abhorred" as an epithet.

          No, the introduction to the Index on the Silmarillion states that words
          appearing in inverted commas are translations, and provides an
          example analogous to the way Sauron <-> The Abhorred is specified.

          > Not that, apart from part of speech, their
          >meanings differ all that strikingly - I could conceive of a foreign word
          >which could adequately be translated by both English words.

          Yes.

          >
          >Since Morgoth (which means "Enemy") was not the name that being started out
          >with, one can presume the same of Sauron (knowing what that means), even if
          >we don't know what earlier name he might have had. In many of Tolkien's
          >First Age papers, Sauron is referred to as Gorthaur and Thu, but these too
          >are Elvish epithets with rude meanings.

          Gorthaur is the Sindarin translation of Sauron.

          I don't think 'Thu' is used in the Silmarillion, only in earlier works. It
          could be
          Sauron's 'real' name or it could just be a name Tolkein later abandoned.
        • David S. Bratman
          ... I don t have the books in front of me, but I ve seen Gorthaur translated as abominable dread , which puts us back where we started. ... Which is why I
          Message 4 of 8 , Sep 25, 2002
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            At 09:34 AM 9/25/2002 , JP Massar wrote:

            >>Since Morgoth (which means "Enemy") was not the name that being started out
            >>with, one can presume the same of Sauron (knowing what that means), even if
            >>we don't know what earlier name he might have had. In many of Tolkien's
            >>First Age papers, Sauron is referred to as Gorthaur and Thu, but these too
            >>are Elvish epithets with rude meanings.
            >
            >Gorthaur is the Sindarin translation of Sauron.

            I don't have the books in front of me, but I've seen "Gorthaur" translated
            as "abominable dread", which puts us back where we started.

            >I don't think 'Thu' is used in the Silmarillion, only in earlier works.

            Which is why I wrote "many of Tolkien's First Age papers" and not "_The
            Silmarillion_."

            >It could be
            >Sauron's 'real' name or it could just be a name Tolkein later abandoned.

            No, it's another rude Elvish epithet.

            - David Bratman
          • dianejoy@earthlink.net
            ... From: David S. Bratman dbratman@stanford.edu Date: Wed, 25 Sep 2002 10:10:51 -0700 To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com Subject: Re: [mythsoc] re: Tolkien
            Message 5 of 8 , Sep 25, 2002
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              Original Message:
              -----------------
              From: David S. Bratman dbratman@...
              Date: Wed, 25 Sep 2002 10:10:51 -0700
              To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: Re: [mythsoc] re: Tolkien rationalizations



              >>I don't think 'Thu' is used in the Silmarillion, only in earlier works.

              >Which is why I wrote "many of Tolkien's First Age papers" and not "_The
              >Silmarillion_."

              >>It could be
              >>Sauron's 'real' name or it could just be a name Tolkein later abandoned.

              >No, it's another rude Elvish epithet.

              >David Bratman

              What does "Thu" mean? ---djb



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