Sonntag, 23. Juli 2017

Saturday, 21 July 2941 T.A.: Is Gandalf going back to Rivendell?

Even Gandalf may not be willing to risk a Beorn-hug here
On this day, in 2941 T.A., the new moon keeps Mirkwood in even deeper nightshade than otherwise. Bilbo and the Dwarves are struggling on on the hidden path. It seems slow going, not only because of the brambles but also because of the up and down slopes that apparently make the way much longer than the mere line as the crow flies would suggest.

Also on this day, Gandalf on Beorn's horse will most likely have reached the Carrock again and fords the Anduin defying the risk of encountering orcs. There is no account of his voyage nor how long it took him nor where he was heading to, and Karen Fonstad does not even speculate about it in "The Atlas of Middle-earth". But as said before: the obvious choice is Lothlórien because it is that stronghold of the White Council which is closest to Dol Guldur, even though otherwise they used to meet in Rivendell - but how would Gandalf get back through the pass even he had just barely crossed a week ago?

The meeting of the White Council and the subsequent attack on Dol Guldur is dated in "late summer" in Appendix A part III. "Late summer" according to whose opinion? For we learn in Appendix D that the seasons had no exact definitions. However, since all dates in LotR (and, retroactively, "The Hobbit") are filtered through the Shire customs, this would most likely mean late summer in the Shire. When that was, of that we have evidence from "The Hobbit" that has to be read properly to have the timetable of the latter half of 2941 T.A. fall into place. For late summer in the Shire is not near the autumnal equinox, as we use to think.


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