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Science Fiction & Fantasy Farscape, Babylon 5, Star Wars, Firefly, vampires, genre books and film.

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Old December 24 2011, 01:03 AM   #526
Gothowitz
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

Adeste Fideles wrote: View Post
I honestly have never heard even the faintest whisper of concern on this matter. Wouldn't you think that there'd be a considerably smaller number of female fans if there was something "strange" about the small number of female characters?
Two words: Boy Bands.
Now add "strange". Don't ask, don't tell.

You honestly never heard about that matter?
It's up there with: was Pipe-weed that "funny weed", was Tolkien a racist and did Balrogs have wings.
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Old December 24 2011, 01:06 AM   #527
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

Trailer looks good. Looking forward to seeing more.
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Old December 24 2011, 01:58 AM   #528
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

Gothowitz wrote: View Post
was Pipe-weed that "funny weed"
In the films? Maybe.
In the books? No - it was called "nicotiana", meaning tobacco.
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Old December 24 2011, 03:52 AM   #529
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

Set Harth wrote: View Post
Gothowitz wrote: View Post
was Pipe-weed that "funny weed"
In the films? Maybe.
In the books? No - it was called "nicotiana", meaning tobacco.
While it is called "tobacco" in The Hobbit and The Two Towers, pipeweed can't be tobacco because tobacco isn't native to northern Europe, and Middle-Earth was intended by Tolkien as a pre-historical Europe.

So "tobacco" is probably a mistranslation from Westron.
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Old December 24 2011, 04:32 AM   #530
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

Allyn Gibson wrote: View Post
Set Harth wrote: View Post
Gothowitz wrote: View Post
was Pipe-weed that "funny weed"
In the films? Maybe.
In the books? No - it was called "nicotiana", meaning tobacco.
While it is called "tobacco" in The Hobbit and The Two Towers, pipeweed can't be tobacco because tobacco isn't native to northern Europe, and Middle-Earth was intended by Tolkien as a pre-historical Europe.

So "tobacco" is probably a mistranslation from Westron.
If they can have potatoes in Middle-earth (which IRL weren't introduced into Europe until the 1500s), why not tobacco? Maybe the Númenóreans brought some foreign crops to Middle-earth when they were colonizing it in the Second Age.
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Old December 24 2011, 04:39 AM   #531
Set Harth
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

Nicotiana is a reference to nicotine.
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Old December 24 2011, 04:41 AM   #532
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

You don't say.
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Old December 24 2011, 04:44 AM   #533
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

Hanukkah Solo wrote: View Post
If they can have potatoes in Middle-earth (which IRL weren't introduced into Europe until the 1500s), why not tobacco? Maybe the Númenóreans brought some foreign crops to Middle-earth when they were colonizing it in the Second Age.
Or, it's an anachronistic mistranslation of the Red Book.

For instance, there's a reference to trains in the first chapter of The Fellowship of the Rings, and they certainly didn't have those in Middle-Earth. It's possible that Tolkien, in translating from Westron, altered some similes and references to something that modern readers would understand.
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Old December 24 2011, 04:47 AM   #534
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

Meh, I prefer my take on it. Simpler than saying it's a mistranslation or alteration from the "original text."
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Old December 24 2011, 04:55 AM   #535
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

Allyn Gibson wrote: View Post
For instance, there's a reference to trains in the first chapter of The Fellowship of the Rings
If you mean The Fellowship of the Ring...

No, there isn't.

Hanukkah Solo wrote:
Maybe the Númenóreans brought some foreign crops to Middle-earth when they were colonizing it in the Second Age.
Looks like it, or at least that was Merry's theory:
FOTR wrote:
'All the same, observations that I have made on my own many journeys south have convinced me that the weed itself is not native to our part of the world, but came northward from the lower Anduin, whither it was, I suspect, originally brought over Sea by the Men of Westernesse.'
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Last edited by Set Harth; December 24 2011 at 05:07 AM.
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Old December 24 2011, 05:06 AM   #536
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

Set Harth wrote: View Post
Allyn Gibson wrote: View Post
For instance, there's a reference to trains in the first chapter of The Fellowship of the Rings
If you mean The Fellowship of the Ring...

No, there isn't.
I do mean Fellowship of the Ring, thanks for correcting me. I typed too fast.

And in return, I'll correct you. There is, in fact, a reference to trains in "A Long Expected Party."

From page 27 of the single volume hardcover edition:

The lights went out. A great smoke went up. It shaped itself like a mountain seen in the distance, and began to glow at the summit. It spouted green and scarlet flames. Out flew a red-golden dragon -- not life-size, but terribly life-like: fire came from his jaws, his eyes glared down; there was a roar, and he whizzed three times over the head of the crowd. They all ducked, and many fell flat on their faces. The dragon passed like an express train, turned a somersault, and burst over Bywater with a deafening explosion.
I even highlighted it for you, Set Harth.

Thus, it's clear that Tolkien the translator is using anachronistic ideas and concepts in his translation of the Red Book of Westmarch. Therefore, Samwise's potatoes need not be the South American tuber, and pipeweed need not be American tobacco.
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Old December 24 2011, 05:18 AM   #537
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

There's a difference between a simile referencing something anachronistic, which isn't actually present except as metaphor, and a direct reference to something which is actually there. Tolkien doesn't say that pipe-weed is like tobacco, just as he does not say "Bilbo liked to sit and watch the express trains go by".
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Old December 24 2011, 05:38 AM   #538
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

Knowing that Tolkien intended for Middle-Earth to be the pre-historical past and that The Silmarillion and The Lord of the Rings represented the lost mythologies and epics of the ancient Britons, then one can take the reasonable view, as I am here, that what's in Tolkien's work should be reflective of what was possible in Europe circa 7,000 BCE. And tobacco and potatoes were no more possible in Europe circa 7,000 BCE than were express trains.

However, we also know that Tolkien was lazy and historical accuracy didn't interest him a great deal. He probably didn't know that potatoes and tobacco weren't native to the Old World. And the first few chapters of Fellowship don't fit with the rest of the work because they have the tone of The Hobbit (which is chock full of references to 1930s culture) and not the tone of the rest of the Legendarium (which is more akin to a medieval romance or the King James Bible), and Tolkien never bothered to fix those chapters.

(Also, since you edited in Merry's theory, it doesn't actually work. According to the maps, there was no equivalent of North and South America prior to the sinking of Numenor and the change of the world from flat to spherical. Without the Americas, there no place for tobacco and potatoes to come from.)

Truly, you can read the anachronisms in The Lord of the Rings either way. Either they're an anachronistic translation from the Westron or Tolkien was a lazy writer of fiction. I'm not trying to win an argument here. I'm just pointing out that Tolkien's literal words don't always work within the world that he assumes and that he built.
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Old December 24 2011, 05:42 AM   #539
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

Set Harth wrote: View Post
There's a difference between a simile referencing something anachronistic, which isn't actually present except as metaphor, and a direct reference to something which is actually there. Tolkien doesn't say that pipe-weed is like tobacco, just as he does not say "Bilbo liked to sit and watch the express trains go by".
But, he did like to watch the trains after smokin' the Pipe-Weed
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Old December 24 2011, 05:51 AM   #540
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Re: THE HOBBIT (2012/2013): News, Rumors, Pics Till Release

There were potatoes in ancient Europe. But then the hobbits ate them all. Then something ate all the hobbits.
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