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Posts: 166
Registered: ‎03-04-2008
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Re: Magic: "On Fairy-Stories"

oldBPLstackdenizen wrote:
Good Afternoon Dagor ( and Company ) ---
I want to go ahead and add a couple of items to "The Hobbit List" - please feel free to re-add these same items and to and to expound further upon them:
( A ) The Arkenstone ---
Not entirely clear just what its magical qualities are, exactly - that is, it doesn't seem to "do" anything ( in the same way that the Ring does, for instance ) except for captivating one with its brilliance and great beauty -
and provoking that fierce jealousy in the heart of Thorin...
( B ) Bard's Black Arrow ---
Again, not necessarily "magic" in of itself, and yet there does seem to be something "extra special" about it - it is a "family heirloom" - Bard always made sure to "recover" it, after whenever it had been used, and -
[ "...If ever you came from the forges of the true king under the Mountain, go now, and speed well!..." ]
[ The Hobbit, Chapter XIV ]

YES!!! Excellent work, Ardo, I would certainly see magical properties in both these items, as I think JRRT intended us to find both imbrued with supernatural force/ power. The Arkenstone falls into the same class of objects that includes the One Ring itself, objects that can elicit powerful emotions, cast a glamour over people who come in contact with it. In the case of the Arkenstone, no one seems to see it without a strong reaction of amazement, "enchantment," unfortunately, this also works on one of the more unfortunate characteristics of the dwarves (as Tolkien outlines them): their desire to possess. The Arkenstone becomes a sort of "precious" for Thorin...

The Black Arrow may originally have had no real magical component in its make-up, just superb craftsmanship, balance, strength -- but, as I think you are suggesting, Ardo, over the years it has acquired the properties of a talisman, and it has become the repository of a great amount of "psychic" energy as its possessors cherished it, put their faith/ trust in it...
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Posts: 633
Registered: ‎12-19-2007
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Re: Magic in The Hobbit and LOTR

Just a few miscellaneous thoughts, in no particular order, or with any specific purpose in mind, except to expand some more on what TiggerBear said about:
"Technology IS Magic" ---
Growing up...--- at one end of the electric cord is the appliance ( the TV ) - at the other end, the plug - put the plug in the outlet, and the magic images appear ...[ of course, often, it takes a great deal of cajoling, coaxing, adjusting, evoking the gods of Television, mumbling incantations, and fiddling with the magic wands ( "rabbit ears" ) to get the picture you want ] For our parents, the Radio was just as magical, in its day...
Those stories of people sitting in front of the radio to "watch" their favorite program are true...
For them, also, there was "Movie Magic" - the experience of which, in spite of all the latest "improvements" in the technologies thereof, was much more magical "way back then"...I picture my mother, taking her dime to the local Movie Theatre, and becoming transfixed, taken to another world - that world up there on that big screen...[ in those days, in any theatre, no matter how big ( or how small ) there was only one screen ]
Even today, I am often confounded by the idea of a technology nowadays considered to be sort of
"outdated" - just listening to the radio ... I think about all those gazillions of radio waves bouncing or vibrating through the air everywhere - through solid matter - [ through my body, even? ] and then getting "translated" into the voices and music I can hear on my radio...
[ and, with the same quality as if I were playing a record or CD ]...
But no technology can ever match the power of imagination...
Especially the power of the imagination of a child...
And, where the the idea of reading stories is concerned,
never at any any other time is the mind so "ripe" for the reception of that
"Willing Suspension Of Disbelief" - and more unemcumbered by those
scruples of analytical thought and "politcal correctness"...
[ that is not to say that kids are all "politically ignorant" - but I think that, by and large,
there is a great deal less of any kind of "guilt" involved with the child's absorption
 of the world ( real or imagined, or a little bit of both ) through the medium of stories...
Even "Non-Fiction" tends to come through all "Bright and Beautiful" to the child
[ as I recall ] ...until later on, when we become "disillusioned" and are confronted by the
"Bitter Truth" -all the "downsides" of the Real World...
Ardo Whortleberry
"Middle-earth Is A State Of Mind"
^^^^^^^ ^^^ ^^^^^^^^^

Ardo Whortleberry
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