Thursday, December 29, 2016

Postscript: The Appendices of The Lord of the Rings


I would like to confess that until this reread, I have never read the Appendices straight through. I've used it as a reference for dates and such, but never read it from start to finish. Yes, yes, I know, until this moment I was not a proper fan at all. To make up for this gross oversight, I have devoted an entire post just to this fascinating postscript that Tolkien was kind enough to add.

A General Guide to the Appendices
With a Special Focus on Appendix B

If you've ever wondered what happened AFTER Pippin caught that bouquet (I can never call him Peregrin), or felt sorry for Sam Gamgee being left behind by Frodo, or if you just happened to be as confused as I was and believe that Celeborn was a ring bearer, the Appendices are the place for you.
To start, the Appendices are:

Appendix A: Annals of the Kings and Rulers 
This includes information on Numenor, Gondor (including why it was ruled by stewards for almost a thousand years), Rohan, and Durin's Folk. Part of Aragorn and Arwen's Tale is also shared.

Appendix B: The Tale of Years
A summary of the of the First Age, a small timeline of the Second Age, a detailed timeline of the Third Age, and (most interesting to me) the "Later Events Concerning the Members of the Fellowship of the Ring."

Appendix C: Family Trees
Family trees of six major hobbit families (you can learn how Frodo is related to Bilbo, Pippin, and others.)

Appendix D: The Calendars
Shire reckoning as compared to Numenorian reckoning, the date each age ended, and other sundry details about the Shire calendars.

Appendix E: Writing and Spelling

Appendix F: The Languages and Peoples of the Third Age

As I mentioned above, perhaps you have wondered what Pippin did with that bouquet he caught. Although I strongly encourage you to read the Appendices for yourself, here is a brief summary of the major events of the Fellowship of the Ring, after the departure of the Ring Bearers/end of the Third Age.
  • Pippin married Diamond of Long Cleve. He had at least one son. He became the Took and the Thain thirteen years after the end of the Third Age.
  • After Sam married Rose Cotton, they had thirteen children. One of their daughters married Pippin's son. Same became mayor six years after the end of the Third Age, and was elected seven times (from 1427-1476).
  • Merry married Estella Bolger (sister of Fatty Bolger). He became the Master of Buckland eleven years after the end of the Third Age.
  • Aragorn made the Shire a Free Land under the protection of the Northern Scepter. He forbade men to enter it, but he came to its borders at least once to visit his friends. Sam's daughter Elanor became a maid of honor to Queen Arwen. 
  • If the above is just inconsequential details to you, pay special attention, because my favorite thing that I read was this: after Rosie died in 1482 (S.R.), Sam left Bag End (on September 22),  gave his daughter Elanor the Red Book, and went to the Grey Havens. He "passed over the sea, the last of the Ring-bearers."
  • Two years later, Meriadoc The Magnificent (102) and Peregrin the Thain (96) left the Shire. King Eomer had sent a message that he wished to see Meriadoc, so they went first to Rohan, where they were able to see the king before he died that autumn, and then to Gondor, where they lived out the rest of their days with King Elessar.
  • King Elessar died in 1541. He was 210.
 "Then Legolas built a grey ship in Ithilien, and sailed down Aunduin and so over Sea; and with him, it is said, went Gimli the Dwarf. And when that ship passed an end was come in Middle-earth of the Fellowship of the Ring."

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  1. I must mention how sad it is to read the end of Aragorn and Arwen's story? And then once you know of it, a bunch of the stuff in LOTR is so much more powerful. I love them. And Beren and Luthien. And Tolkien and Edith. And Elwing and that other dude (loving it doesn't make me good with names)

  2. I was so very happy when I read in the Appendices that Legolas took Gimli with him into the west! Aragorn and Arwen's story is so sad, yet sweet at the same time. Bittersweet.


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