This website contains archives of the Tolkien Discussion Group from 2009 to early 2013.

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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Vanyar

Shawn Daysleeper
Fifi Wickentower
Lihan Taifun
Sheridanne Kelley (briefly)
Reine Soderstrom
AelKennyr Rhiano
Cromm Slade (briefly)

The Vanyar took part in the War of Wrath at the end of the First Age. Where did the Vanyar get weapons? How did they learn to fight? These would not be common skills in the Blessed Lands.

Is living in paradise boring for the Vanyar? Did they ever have a chance to “grow up”?

Would the Vanyar gradually become less “elvish” and more “ainurish”, living so close to the Ainur, and relatively isolated from other elves? What exactly would it mean to become more ainurish? Or might the Vanyar begin to waste away, either individually or as a race?

Did the Ainur need the Vanyar help in the War of Wrath? Or was it a case that the naively idealistic Vanyar needed the opportunity to be involved?

Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . we didn't have a topic set for tonight. Did anyone have anything still on their minds?
Sheridanne Kelley smiles at Olwe
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . These discussions are OOC. We were just trying to pick a topic, or starting point, or whatever
AelKennyr Rhiano: . Did you get to discuss holidays last week?
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . we tried, but we didn't know of any. It would be interesting to know about them
AelKennyr Rhiano: . oh ok Well, um....I guess tonight is a grab bag :)
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . unless our guests know anything about holidays of the Elves? Whoa, Sheri keeps crashing
Reine Soderstrom: . hmm yes.. it's been a while since I experienced such lag. Could be me though

Fifi Wickentower: . . the hobbits celebrated Yule but i don't find reference to the Elves . . they marked the passing of the seasons
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . hobbits celebrated Yule and midsummer
AelKennyr Rhiano: . You would think the elves would as well
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . you would think. And a mention of a harvest celebration in Valimar

AelKennyr Rhiano: . I cannot remember if we every discussed the Vanyar. Kell reprising the role of Ingwe has me very curious as to how they might have developed over the ages since the Silmarillion.
Shawn Daysleeper nods
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . no, we haven't discussed the Vanyar. They are mentioned so little in the Silmarillion
AelKennyr Rhiano: . I know, and it is a shame.
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . and only at the very beginning
Shawn Daysleeper: . at the end of the 1st age, they took part in the War of Wrath against Melkor along with Ainur
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . the Vanyar, oh right
Shawn Daysleeper: . yes Vanyar
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . and I think that is the last we hear of them?
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . since the story is exclusively in Middle Earth from then on
Shawn Daysleeper: . ya I think that battle is the only time they returned to middle earth and it was for a very short time
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . I'm surprised they even had weapons. Why would the Vanyar own weapons?
Shawn Daysleeper: . good question. Did they have weapons?
AelKennyr Rhiano: . I wondered that myself.
Shawn Daysleeper: . if they were in a battle, and a big one like that, they needed to fight with something
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . you would think so, but they would have to know how to use them, too
AelKennyr Rhiano: . Perhaps the Valar armed them.
Shawn Daysleeper: . I think all the coasts were captured by then so they could not use resources in middle earth
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . if you handed me a spear -- in RL -- I'd probably just hurt myself
Reine Soderstrom: . awww „ã°
Fifi Wickentower: . . XD !LOL! ‚òÖ
Reine Soderstrom: . well just reading wiki: "When the Vanyar took up arms in the War of Wrath", so it must be.
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . ah ha. Heh heh, if that article is mentioning Imin the first elf, there are more references than the Silmarillion
AelKennyr Rhiano: . yes, I read that article. We talking about it one night here.
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . about the stories of the first elves?
AelKennyr Rhiano: . oh yes
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . we were
AelKennyr Rhiano: . about the awakening of the first elves, too, and the alternate accounts of that
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . I was just notice that the "references" at the bottom of the article only lists Silmarillion, while Imin comes from a non-Silmarillion source
Shawn Daysleeper: . so who would train them to use weapons?
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . who was left in Tirion? was that Fingolfin? I always forget that part ...

Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . hello
Cromm Slade: greetings
Reine Soderstrom: . Greetings Cromm
Fifi Wickentower: . . offers the horsey a carrot
AelKennyr Rhiano: . hi :)
Cromm Slade: im not a horse m,lady
Shawn Daysleeper: . hello :)
Lihan Taifun whispers "FIFI! He's a unicorn!"
Shawn Daysleeper: . hehe
Fifi Wickentower: . . rubs her eyes
Reine Soderstrom: . Or perhaps a shapeshifter „ã° I know all about that :)
Fifi Wickentower: . . oh my!!!! i do greatly beg your pardon!!!! must get glasses
Cromm Slade: indeed i am
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . heh heh, well, yes, he is a shape shifter
Reine Soderstrom: . There you go „ã°
Cromm Slade: sorry to interrupt. just wanting to say hello to all
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . :)
Fifi Wickentower: . . hi cromm :)
Shawn Daysleeper smiles
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . you're always welcome. This is the Tolkien Discussion Group
AelKennyr Rhiano: . oh, you can join us :)
Cromm Slade: please give me a moment ill be back in a jiffy.
AelKennyr Rhiano: . ok :)
Lihan Taifun smiles

Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . busy night
AelKennyr Rhiano: . Reine, I notice you wearing your titler, are you rping somewhere now?
Reine Soderstrom: . I don't. I did miss my old friends, and decided to return. Reine Soderstrom smiles
AelKennyr Rhiano: . how wonderful
Reine Soderstrom: . I have much going on in SL
AelKennyr Rhiano: . Good to have you here tonight :)
Reine Soderstrom: . it's great seeing you all once more
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . I'm afraid it isn't a very lively discussion tonight
AelKennyr Rhiano: . You should come more often.
Reine Soderstrom: . Doesn't matter. My original intent was having the chance to see some of my old friends again. Just enjoying your presence
AelKennyr Rhiano: . Well, I have always wanted to know more about the Vanyar....they live so hand-in-pocket with the Valar.
AelKennyr Rhiano smiles at Reine
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . They do. It sounds a bit boring
AelKennyr Rhiano: . Living in paradise, you mean?
Fifi Wickentower prefers it
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . I suppose they are living in paradise
Reine Soderstrom: . one cannot know joy without misery
Shawn Daysleeper: . yes, very true
AelKennyr Rhiano: . Right, and since they have come into the Undying Lands, nothing to disturb that paradise has come to their doorstep.
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . I wonder whether they really got a chance to grow up? with everything perfect all along
AelKennyr Rhiano: . It does leave the opportunity to face adversity and grow limited.
Reine Soderstrom: . hmm yes indeed that extends my statement, good question
AelKennyr Rhiano: . Can you imagine Ingwe in the 4th Age mortal world, for example? Talk about culture shock, for one thing.
Shawn Daysleeper: . good point. He wold be pretty naive about the world
AelKennyr Rhiano nods
Reine Soderstrom: . and vulnerable for deception, perhaps
Shawn Daysleeper: . he would not know evil perhaps, in a pleasant form
AelKennyr Rhiano: . oh yes
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . which is related to being hard to imagine them going out to the War of Wrath
AelKennyr Rhiano: . yes, it does
Reine Soderstrom: . maybe it's that shock that has driven him, trying to get rid of that uglyness
AelKennyr Rhiano: . And I have to wonder if they adopt more of the customs and mannerisms of the Ainur and perhaps become less elf-like over time
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . has driven him to do what?
AelKennyr Rhiano: . into the War?
Reine Soderstrom: . the culture shock Ael was talking about
AelKennyr Rhiano: . The sheer fact the world had changed so much...
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . they hardly knew the outside world, when they left, at the beginning of time
AelKennyr Rhiano nods
Reine Soderstrom: . for myself I can try to see it as the will towards joy and harmony .. a good soul being confronted with pain, misery and suffering just may want to put his ideals aside in order to restore what once was
AelKennyr Rhiano: . I can see that.
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . would he know HOW to accomplish that?
Reine Soderstrom: . That is a very good question
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . it would be frustrating, wanting that, and not having the practical experience to accompish it

Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . what would happen to elves who were adopting the culture of the Ainur?
AelKennyr Rhiano: . That would be interesting....They would grow apart from the other elvens, of course. And they would have a different philosophy and viewpoint of the world
Reine Soderstrom: . very true
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . and yet they could never be ainur in their nature
Reine Soderstrom: . indeed. Moriquendi (Dark Elves)
AelKennyr Rhiano: . but that is a question I have...couldn't day, through enough passage of time? All beings, all species evolve or die.
Reine Soderstrom: . "The Moriquendi (singular Moriquendë) are the Elves of Darkness, are, in essence, the Elves that did not join the Great Journey over the sea and behold the light of the Two Trees in Valinor." this is all that I can find about them
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . and what about the Moriquendi? how do they fit in?
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . I'm still missing the connection, how Moriquendi got into the conversation
AelKennyr Rhiano: . I think I did, too? AelKennyr Rhiano smiles sheepishly.
Reine Soderstrom: . Ael talking about elves growing apart made me think of this. Just throwing it in
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . ah, another example of elves who were culturally separated
Reine Soderstrom: . indeed
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . while the Vanyar might have been growing more ainur-ish
AelKennyr Rhiano: . oh, yes, I see now...two extremes
Reine Soderstrom: . Which proves it's a strange idea of Ingwë going to war, interesting
AelKennyr Rhiano: . but not far fetched if he never developed emotionally because he lived in a place that never challenged him to "grow up."
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . besides, with the Ainur going to war, did they really need an elven army?
Reine Soderstrom: . Good point Lihan. The ones who created Arda... needing help. It does sound strange huh
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . so the Vanyar were idealistic teenagers who wanted to help, but not necessarily capable of being much help?
AelKennyr Rhiano: . perhaps the elves needed to be the army and the Ainur knew that. Or Tolkien kinda slipped upon that point. heh heh
Shawn Daysleeper: . ya
Reine Soderstrom: . Many stories have contradictions.. it could be possible yes. Maybe the uprising itself was a visual shock effect that was needed perhaps
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . Tolkien had personal experience at war; maybe he picked up the the Vanyar wanting to do their part
Reine Soderstrom: . "The Elves are going to war! Can you believe that?" the seriousness
AelKennyr Rhiano: . yes or that they needed that experience: else how would they develop?
Reine Soderstrom: . Good point Ael
AelKennyr Rhiano: . :)
Shawn Daysleeper: . hopefully they have not forgotten that experience over the course of the ages. They may need it in the 4th age
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . It would be some of the same elves. There would be a lot of new Vanyar in the mean time
Reine Soderstrom: . Being teached by the elder.. just in case
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . true
AelKennyr Rhiano: . Do you think they would keep those skills sharp over the passage of time?
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . humans don't
Reine Soderstrom: . yes I may think so.. since it's not a war-culture
Shawn Daysleeper: . if you don't use knowledge it tends to fade
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . right
Reine Soderstrom: . I don't see them do their dayly combat training, right after some morning lembas
AelKennyr Rhiano: . and they never had a bloodletting on their own soil, as Alqualonde, as the Teleri knew
Shawn Daysleeper: . it's like math, you have to practice every so often to retain the skills
AelKennyr Rhiano nods

Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . so, could the Vanyar evolve?
AelKennyr Rhiano: . That is a most excellent question.
Reine Soderstrom: . indeed, if you already are near perfection, or are absolutely perfect
Fifi Wickentower: . . would they evolve or die out?
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . or are the ainur so different that the gap cannot be bridged?
Reine Soderstrom: . then there is only one way to evolve: backwards
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . or waste away
Fifi Wickentower: . . yes
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . would they lose the will to live? either individually or as a race?
Reine Soderstrom: . hmm good question. Depends on how hopeful the situation is maybe
AelKennyr Rhiano: . If they do not evolve, thought, they would devolve, and surely the Ainur would not allow that?
Reine Soderstrom: . going to war does answer that, fighting for existance
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . faced with that much perfection, would anything motivate them? Could the ainur prevent it? The ainur seem to be fairly bad a preventing elves or humans from doing anything
Reine Soderstrom: . indeed
AelKennyr Rhiano: . However these elves do live among them....
Shawn Daysleeper: . the elves are tied to the earth, so if the earth changes, wouldn't the elves?
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . hmmm, interesting point
Shawn Daysleeper: . environmental change, climate change, consumption of resources, pollution
Reine Soderstrom: . interesting indeed. But then again I see elves returning to the undying lands.. giving me the impression "I don't want to have anything to do with this anymore"
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . are the undying lands unchanged forever?
Shawn Daysleeper: . good question
Reine Soderstrom: . indeed. It's like we could say.. "does heaven change?" heavy question „ã° but a good one
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . but aman is tied to the created world, part of the created world
Shawn Daysleeper: . I would think it would change. Maybe not through the mechanisms I said before, for example, climate and environment may change, but through different mechanisms than those in arda maybe
AelKennyr Rhiano: . Well, in the 4th Age we have allowed Aman to change...the presence of the flowers do that
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . although Reine hasn't necessarily been following 4th Age plotlines
AelKennyr Rhiano: . oh....sorry
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . even artificially maintaining a climate -- which the ainur probably do in Aman -- isn't so easy

Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . are we ready to pick a topic for next week?
AelKennyr Rhiano: . yes
Shawn Daysleeper: . ok
Fifi Wickentower: . . mhm
AelKennyr Rhiano: . Does anyone have any ideas?
Shawn Daysleeper: . thinking
AelKennyr Rhiano: . I am afraid I am a blank for discussion ideas.
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . that has been a problem lately, no good topic ideas. What's the next Silmarillion chapter?
Fifi Wickentower: . . my brain is too pooped to think
AelKennyr Rhiano: . Did we do Chapted 13? the Return of the Noldor?
Shawn Daysleeper: . no. We stopped at 12
AelKennyr Rhiano: . I think that is next.
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . last time we weren't feeling so excited about Noldor
Shawn Daysleeper: . right
AelKennyr Rhiano: . We could skip around.
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . there is the War of Wrath
AelKennyr Rhiano: . ok, I am up for that. if you all are.
Fifi Wickentower: . . would tie in with tonight
Shawn Daysleeper: . chapter 24
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . chapter 24 -- the War of Wrath and Earendil
Fifi Wickentower: . . sure
Shawn Daysleeper: . that's fine with me
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . next week is the 22nd. Are people going to be around?
Fifi Wickentower: . . omg . . .really?
Shawn Daysleeper: . yes I will be
AelKennyr Rhiano: . I should be.
Fifi Wickentower: . . i guess i am
Lihan Taifun: . . . . . . ok