Of the Ruin of Doriath
Well, you know, I actually really liked this chapter. I was expecting Morgoth’s minions to do the detroying, so that it was Dwarves and then Elves that did it was a pleasant surprise. Tolkien is incredibly creative with how he ties the last however many chapters together as Doriath meets its end. The Nauglamir with the Silmaril set within it was pretty brilliant–how it was made possible is almost mind boggling when you trace the chain of events that led up to it. And, so incredibly fitting that it should end up in the hands of Beren and Luthien while they lived. I had thought we’d heard the last of them a couple chapters back, so this was really a pleasant surprise for them to pop up and stick it to the Dwarves. Actually, the chapter kind of reads like one of the cartoons where one of the characters is running with a prized object of some kind and “yoink!” someone nabs it from him, then “snatch!” someone else grabs it from them, and on and on the object goes bouncing from one character to the next.
On a side note, with all the kings and princes of the Noldor that have been killed to this point I was startled that all 7 of Feanor’s sons were still around. Well…not any more, but still, I hadn’t noticed that. Now they’re down to 4 and I can’t help but wonder how fate is going to catch up with the rest of them.
Loose ends tied up: Mim gets it at the hands of Hurin–the last of his kind; Morwen and Hurin meet before she dies (and not long before he does);
A couple images I love in this chapter: I like that Tol Morwen remains even after Beleriand sinks beneath the sea. Also, I hadn’t thought of Beren and Luthien’s children as descended from three races (Elf, Maiar, and Man) which I thought was really cool.
Something I didn’t like (there had to be something): I don’t like Melian’s course of action. It’s like, “Aw, Thingol is dead. That’s it, I’m outta here.” She just ditches all of Doriath as soon as Thingol dies…a crappy thing to do if there ever was one. I mean, she was the queen of all of Doriath (all of Belariand technically, right?), those were her people she left to get slaughtered, not just Thingol’s.
The way Thingol dies is almost comic. He’s going on about how great he is having lived countless years and on and on, and the Dwarves jump him and its over. No great fight with Thingol fighting bravely and taking a couple Dwarves with him, he just gets taken out–just like that.
So, where does the story go from here? Does Gondolin get wiped or do we follow the Nauglamir for a while longer? It’s gotta be something tragic.
Till next time,