Sonntag, 22. Oktober 2017

Friday, 21 October 2941 T. A.: The last day of the Dwarvish year

The first sighting of the young moon
brings joy to the Elves as well
On this day, in 2941 T. A., Thórin Oakenshild had the courtesy to look into a calendar and to inform us that the day after would be the first day of the last week of autumn. Once Tolkien's decision is accepted that all data given in "The Hobbit" follow the Shire Reckoning, this helps to identify the date on which this happened, and contrary to what John Rateliff thought, the dating is consistent.

We know that in the Shire, Saturday is the first day of the week, so Thórin checked his pocket calendar on a Friday. His statement leaves two possible interpretations: since winter begins on 1 November according to all statements given in "The Hobbit", either the first day of the last week of autumn refers to the last full week, which begins on 22 October and ends on 28, or it refers to the last week begun, commencing on 29 October. Only 22 October is consistent with the first sighting of the young moon that Bilbo observes on that day - the rosh chodesh as the ancient Jews put it, or first day of the lunar month according to the testimony of its observers, and remember that the Dwarves are in some ways the Jews of Middle-earth. Hence, 21 October was definitely the last day of this Dwarvish year.

(Can someone help identify the artist of today's image choice? Google image search only relates to its re-use as a CD cover.)

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