I knew that if I didn’t stay on top of these that I would fall behind quick. A lot of things went down in my personal life recently, and unfortunately that’s put up a barrier for me to keep up with, On This Day in Middle-earth.
But at Of Blades and Kings, we don’t give up, so I’m catching everyone up and continuing the day to day format.
Here’s everything that went down in Middle-earth since my last post
Éomer returning to Edoras meets Aragorn.
Frodo begins the passage of the Dead Marshes at dawn.
Aragorn meets Gandalf the White. They set out for Edoras.
Faramir leaves Minas Tirith on an errand to Ithilien.
Frodo comes to the end of the marshes.
Gandalf comes to Edoras and heals Théoden.
The Rohirrim ride west against Saruman.
Second Battle of Fords of Isen. Erkenbrand defeated.
Entmoot ends in afternoon.
The Ents march on Isengard and reach it at night.
Théoden retreats to Helm’s Deep.
Battle of the Hornburg begins.
Ents complete the destruction of Isengard.
Théoden and Gandalf set out from Helm’s Deep for Isengard.
Frodo reaches the slag-mounds on the edge of the Desolation of the Morannon.
Théoden reaches Isengard at noon. Parley with Saruman in Orthanc.
Winged Nazgûl passes over the camp at Dol Baran.
Gandalf sets out with Peregrin for Minas Tirith.
Frodo hides in sight of the Morannon, and leaves at dusk.
Aragorn overtaken by the Dúnedain in the early hours.
Théoden sets out from the Hornburg for Harrowdale.
Aragorn sets out later.
Frodo taken by Faramir to Henneth Annûn.
Aragorn comes to Dunharrow at nightfall.
Aragorn takes the ‘ Paths of the Dead’ at daybreak; he reaches Erech at midnight.
Frodo leaves Henneth Annûn.
Gandalf reaches Minas Tirith.
Faramir leaves Henneth Annûn.
Aragorn sets out from Erech and comes to Calembel.
At dusk Frodo reaches the Morgul-road.
Théoden comes to Dunharrow.
Darkness begins to flow out of Mordor.
The Dawnless Day.
The Muster of Rohan: the Rohirrim ride from Harrowdale.
Faramir rescued by Gandalf outside the gates of the City.
Aragorn crosses Ringló.
An army from the Morannon takes Cair Andros and passes into Anórien.
Frodo passes the Cross-roads, and sees the Morgul-host set forth.
Gollum visits Shelob, but seeing Frodo asleep nearly repents.
Denethor sends Faramir to Osgiliath.
Aragorn reaches Linhir and crosses into Lebennin.
Eastern Rohan is invaded from the north.
First assault on Lórien.
Gollum leads Frodo into Shelob’s lair.
Faramir retreats to the Causeway Forts.
Théoden camps under Min-Rimmon.
Aragorn drives the enemy towards Pelargir.
The Ents defeat the invaders of Rohan.
Frodo captured by the Orcs of Cirith Ungol.
The Pelennor is overrun. Faramir is wounded.
Aragorn reaches Pelargir and captures the fleet.
Théoden in Drúadan Forest.
March is usually thought of as a Springtime happy month where the cold harsh winter gets washed away. In The Lord of the Rings, March couldn’t be more different. Wars are being waged, trusts are being broken, it truly is a dark time for the Fellowship.
Now before we leave there’s a couple of things I’d like to call out.
The calendars the people use in Middle-earth are a little bit different than ours. A February 30th date changes things pretty significantly, but we’re going to keep the story connected to our calendar so we can avoid confusion.
The Dawnless Day, for many who haven’t read the books you may not be familiar with this moment. Before Sauron begins his war on Minas Tirith he sends clouds ahead of his armies so they don’t have to fight in the sunlight. At this time Pippin is a soldier of Gondor and when be woke up he thought the time of day was wrong. Imagine being in a era where your reference for doing things throughout the day wasn’t your phone or watch but the sun. Now, all of the sudden, the sun is gone and you have no idea what time it is and what you’re supposed to be doing. Forget the fact that the clouds remove the sun for his Orcs, Sauron just threw a crazy wrench in the day to day lives of everyone at Minas Tirith.
Gollum meets Shelob and almost changes his mind when he sees Frodo sleeping.
This is a beautiful scene in the books that’s almost impossible to recreate for screen.
“And so Gollum found them hours later, when he returned, crawling and creeping down the path out of the gloom ahead. Sam sat propped against the stone, his head dropping sideways and his breathing heavy. In his lap lay Frodo’s head, drowned deep in sleep; upon his white forehead lay one of Sam’s brown hands, and the other lay softly upon his master’s breast. Peace was in both their faces.
Gollum looked at them. A strange expression passed over his lean hungry face. The gleam faded from his eyes, and they went dim and grey, old and tired. A spasm of pain seemed to twist him, and he turned away, peering back up towards the pass, shaking his head, as if engaged in some interior debate. Then he came back, and slowly putting out a trembling hand, very cautiously he touched Frodo’s knee – but almost the touch was a caress. For a fleeting moment, could one of the sleepers have seen him, they would have thought that they beheld an old weary hobbit, shrunken by the years that had carried him far beyond his time, beyond friends and kin, and the fields and streams of youth, an old starved pitiable thing.”
Tolkien decided to give us a moment to show there was something still inside Gollum. Something was stirring, even after being chained, tortured, manipulated, and mind bent towards the Ring. Sadly, we never get to see the other side of Gollum, he’s too far gone to turn his back away from the Ring.
However, in this moment, we’re allowed to feel pity for this creature who’s life was unceremoniously ripped from his hands. Gollum will forever be tormented by the Ring, and unfortunately he doesn’t have much say in the matter. Regardless, let this moment fill you with remorse, and possibly even forgiveness. How many people in our lives have been tormented by something as tempting as the Ring? How often have we offered those friends or family members forgiveness? Maybe, like Gollum, they’re too far gone, and maybe in the end we can’t control how they act, but we can control how we act.
How strong of a moment this was that Gollum almost repented, could you imagine? The relief he would’ve felt when he left the Ring behind for good? But, Gollum has a part to play in this tale. He wasn’t meant to be rid of his lust for the Ring, just like Frodo was meant to have it.
Thank you so much for your time and patience, I’m incredibly sorry for the hiatus but I appreciate everyone taking the time to get caught up.
Thank you and remember, the crownless again shall be king.
– The Wandering One