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  #151  
Old 05-16-2020, 04:30 PM
Andy L is offline
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Originally Posted by Elendil's Heir View Post
Bumped.

I think this may already have been asked and answered in one of the many LOTR threads, but in the movies, why didn't Gimli know that Moria had been lost to the Balrog, cave-troll and orcs long before the Fellowship got there? He happily expected a warm welcome and a big feast. But the dead dwarves they saw inside were already cobwebbed skeletons, so Moria obviously fell a loooong time before. Wouldn't the lack of news from Moria over those many years have been a bad sign? Wouldn't other dwarves have made inquiries there sometime before Gandalf & Co. arrived, and learned the bad news?

And remind me, were the books any different as to Gimli's expectations, or the knowledge of non-Moria dwarves as to the situation there?
I think it's a weak point in the books, too, but remember, Third Age Middle-Earth is dangerous place for travelers, so frequent news updates are not expected. The dwarves of the Lonely Mountain have a kingdom to restore and may consider themselves too busy to sent for news, and expect that the dwarves restoring Moria to be in the same condition. Furthermore, dwarves live a long time, so a few decades of not hearing news is disquieting, but not necessarily a sign of disaster.
  #152  
Old 05-16-2020, 04:54 PM
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In the book, Balin had left the Lonely Mountain for Moria 29 years before the journey of the Fellowship. At the Council of Elrond, Gloin says that "for a while" they had news from Moria, "then there was silence" although I don't think there's any indication of exactly how long the Moria colony was in contact with Dain's folk. I don't think it's terribly surprising that there was no follow-up expedition; it was a long and dangerous journey, and Dain was opposed to the whole enterprise in any case. After the Fellowship had spent a day traveling through Moria, Gimli says "we have found no sign of my kindred. I doubt now that Balin ever came here," which is a surprising statement given that Balin had sent news of his entry to Moria and the work they were doing there. But perhaps Gimli just meant that he didn't think Balin had ever been in this part of Moria.
  #153  
Old 05-16-2020, 04:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Elendil's Heir View Post
But the dead dwarves they saw inside were already cobwebbed skeletons, so Moria obviously fell a loooong time before.
To be exact, the colony was destroyed in TA 2994, five years after it was started, while the party entered Moria in TA 3019, so it had been 25 years (per the books).
  #154  
Old 05-16-2020, 05:10 PM
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But perhaps Gimli just meant that he didn't think Balin had ever been in this part of Moria.
That's my thought too. Balin and his folks came into Moria via Dimrill Dale and the Eastgate.

And until Gandalf laid eyes on the Balrog, the exact nature of Durin's Bane had been unknown. Until then, all that was known about it was that it was some evil greater than the orcs that had lurked there.
  #155  
Old 05-16-2020, 06:47 PM
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And remind me, were the books any different as to Gimli's expectations, or the knowledge of non-Moria dwarves as to the situation there?
When they are discussing entering, Gandalf says "There is even a chance that Dwarves are there, and that in some deep hall of his fathers, Balin son of Fundin may be found." So it would seem that the chance the colony still survived at that point was really just a hope against hope. Gandalf didn't consider it likely that the dwarves were still alive, and if they were they would be hiding out in some deep refuge (and perhaps that was why they hadn't communicated).
  #156  
Old 05-16-2020, 09:32 PM
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Thanks. Puzzling to me that Gimli expected such a warm welcome, under the circumstances.
  #157  
Old 05-16-2020, 10:48 PM
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People have argued that Bombadil wasn't necessary and also didn't really belong in the story, but I think he was necessary.

If it weren't for him, how would the hobbits have been rescued from the Barrowdowns? And they had to be trapped in a barrow because the barrows were the only existing source of the daggers all the hobbits got (which he gave them!) and that Merry later used to stab the Witch King, "breaking the spell that knit his unseen sinews to his will", thus making Eowyn's stroke successful and the Rohirrim victorious on the Pelennor fields.

Aragorn couldn't have rescued them. He'd have had no reason to be looking for them on the Downs nor any reason to suspect they'd been trapped by a wight.

Gandalf was busy fending off several Nazgul on Weathertop about then, I think, or else was still trapped in Orthanc.

Inglorien was (by then) long gone and I don't recall that he was like Glorfindel with power against the unseen/undead.

Tolkien needed someone to rescue them, he liked the idea of Bombadil, Bombadil keeping to his own country meant he really wouldn't affect the rest of the story, and he added a bit of mystery and a hint at the age of the world. Plus we get the bath song, and I count that as a win.

Also, I think that the nights they spent with Bombadil were really the beginning of their awareness that the world was much bigger than the Shire. They needed that.

As an aside, I found it interesting that Bombadil knew who had owned the brooch he took back to Goldberry. It implies that at the time the North Kingdom fought Agmar, he was out and about at least a bit and not keeping himself only within the bounds of his little country.
  #158  
Old 05-17-2020, 08:39 AM
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I agree that it adds to the story, to have things in it that are unexplained even to the Wise. And while some of those unexplained things are dark and sinister, not all are.
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