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Thread: How did Elrond and Galadriel converse?

  1. #1
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    How did Elrond and Galadriel converse?

    In the movie, we see Elrond and Galadriel talking from afar. What exactly are the people who haven't read the books supposed to think? That Elves are telepathic beings? Did they maybe use their "magic" rings? Did PJ offer any kind of reasoning or arguments to explain this scene?

    Cheers

  2. #2
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    In the book, Elrond, Galariel and Gandalf are telepathic.

    'For they did not move or speak with mouth, looking from mind to mind; and only their shining eyes stirred and kindled as their thoughts went to and fro'.

    (Return of the King, Book 6, Chapter VI)

    A case of PJ knowing it better then a 'fan'

    Odo
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    In that instance, the three of them were close by. Is there some kind of rule...is their telepathy affected by distance or not at all?
    The viewers who haven't read the book might as well make the conclusion that all elves can speak telepathically.

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    Well, I guess long-distance calls cost more, but otherwise....

    Odo
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    Who says it's telepathy?

    My recollection of the scene is that there is no suggestion that there is an actual communication/conversation going on. My feeling at the time was that Elrond was simply replaying in his mind a conversation he had had with Galadriel. Remember that his preoccupation at this point is Arwen, and her future with Aragorn. He has told Arwen that Aragorn will not come back, and he is replaying in his mind the fact that he and Galadriel have concluded that the Quest will fail, and that Sauron will prevail.

    I think the more interesting speculation is that Elrond is thinking all this as Arwen is leaving Rivendell, but that Haldir and the Elves show up at Helms Deep because Elrond has somehow decided that it is worth resurrecting the Last Alliance of Elves and Men. My take on that is that Arwen has left Rivendell to be with Aragorn. His final question to Arwen ("Do I not also have your love?") sounds to me as if he has understood that her love for Aragorn will not change, and that she will not go to the Grey Havens. And the final look between them seemed to me to be that of a willful/resolute daughter going off despite her father's misgivings. The Elves showing up at HD is Elrond's way of trying to make sure her daughter has the future she wants.

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    I think I might lean more with Angband on this one. My personal opinion (pure flight of fancy, I'll admit) is that Elrond could be reading/purusing a letter/message from Galadriel. For all we know the message could be brought by Haldir, which would explain why he shows up at Helm's Deep with a message from Rivendell. This is just my interpretation of the scene- I don't particularly expect anybody else to go along with it.

    As for Elf telepathy, there was a lot of discussion on the book boards during the summer comparing Galadriel's mirror with the palantiri. Personally I think the 'technology' behind them is very similiar, and the mirror could probably be used for long-style communication.
    Also, at the battle in "the Black Gates Open" Sauron is able to immediately send for the Nazgul in an attempt to thwart Frodo. Perhaps if the big baddy can do this, some of the Elves can as well.
    What news from the South, O sighing wind, do you bring to me at eve?
    Where now is Harad the White? He tarries and I grieve.

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    Well, in the book all instances of telepathic communication involving Elves had to use eye-contact, not only in the quote given but also in the first time the Fellowship sees Galadriel. In the movie, Elrond could be remembering a conversation or reading a message, but if it was so then it was poorly conveyed, as that particular interpretation had never crossed my mind nor of any other viewer I know! (including people who had never read the book). I don't think Tolkien's Elves had the ability to talk through several miles. Imagine how many instances would be different then: Nirnaeth Arnoediad (why beacons if you can use telepathy?), the messengers Elrond sent to Lórien and other places before the Fellowship left...

    As for Sauron's telepathy with the Nazgûl, he had their rings, and their wills. I find it much more believable than Elvish telepathy. Also, the Mirror would be a most unstable means of communication, since 'not even the Wisest cannot tell what the Mirror will show'. I don't imagine Galadriel communicating with Elrond through it. Only the Palantíri can be used reliably as a communication device.

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    Has everyone forgotten FOTR?
    Galadriel did a lot of telepathic talking in Fellowship.
    She talked to Frodo and Boromir and probablyto all the others at some stage.
    Who says there is a range to the telepathy of the Elf-Lords

    As for Haldir's, I think Elrond told Galadriel to renew the alliance and send her Elves because all his Elves left. Haldir said "I bring WORD from Elrond of Rivendell."
    Elrond must have sent that Word to Galadriel.
    I guess that only Gandalf, Elrond, Saruman, Galadriel, Cirdan and possibly Thranduil have this powerbecause they were all born in Valinor.

    Morgaphry

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    Elrond, Cirdan and Thranduil were born in Middle Earth, not Valinor.

    In the movie, Elrond could be remembering a conversation or reading a message, but if it was so then it was poorly conveyed, as that particular interpretation had never crossed my mind nor of any other viewer I know!
    I couldn't agree more. That thought has never crossed my mind during the film.

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    I think an open mind is a happy mind when watching these films.

    re. who was born where- technically Gandalf and Saruman weren't born in Valinor either- they existed before it.

    Morgraphy- not only did Haldir bring word from Elrond and no word from Galadriel, but the equipment of the Elves matches the equipment of Elrond's lads from the Last Alliance (prologue of FotR).
    What news from the South, O sighing wind, do you bring to me at eve?
    Where now is Harad the White? He tarries and I grieve.

  11. #11
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    Holy thead ressurection Batman!

    From a Guide To Middle Earth:

    "They, or at least the Eldar, could talk directly from mind to mind without words... had power to shape or realize the thought of others"

    I don't recall reading that this kind of conversation requires eye contact, and it would seem that possibly the older elves, and more powerful ones can communicate over great distances this way. I certainly wouldn't imagine it impossible for Galadrial as she was one of the greatest Eldar left on Middle Earth..

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    The question then remains: if they are able to communicate in this way, why don't they? Why does Elrond sends messengers to Galadriel? Why is there a need for beacons in Nirnaeth Arnoediad? Why Eärendil is such a great hero? Couldn't they just ask for help telepathically? Why would Fëanor make the
    Palantíri? Why would Gandalf have to rely on Radagast to escape Orthanc, couldn't he just ask Galadriel for help?

    The only examples we have in the books of people "talking directly from mind to mind" involves eye-contact: Galadriel and the Fellowship, the wise in Book VI, Finrod with men, Melian and Lúthien. (Does anybody remember other instances?)

    I have no issue with it in the movie, in fact I think it is a great scene, but I don't think it is grounded on Tolkien's Elves, at least not in his depictions that were made available in the books.

  13. #13
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    Originally posted by Eriol
    The question then remains: if they are able to communicate in this way, why don't they? Why does Elrond sends messengers to Galadriel? Why is there a need for beacons in Nirnaeth Arnoediad? Why Eärendil is such a great hero? Couldn't they just ask for help telepathically? Why would Fëanor make the
    Palantíri? Why would Gandalf have to rely on Radagast to escape Orthanc, couldn't he just ask Galadriel for help?

    All these instances make me think that telepathy is impossible at a distance. Galadriel is possibly an exception to some extent, since she had marvellous insight into the minds of others (Unfinished Tales), so she was a mind reader.
    They all needed some sort of artifact if they wanted to transmit their thought at a great distance.
    Just a thought: Is their maybe some side effect to the Three that Tolkien never mentioned? Could their bearers speak telepathically amongst themselves?

    I agree with your post Eriol, and the scene in the film was truly fabulous.

  14. #14
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    Other thread resurrection

    I still don't have a mechanism, but Tar-Elenion gave the name of 'mind speech' here as 'sanwe-latya', 'thought-opening'. Don't know where that comes from, but I suspect HoME XI.
    What news from the South, O sighing wind, do you bring to me at eve?
    Where now is Harad the White? He tarries and I grieve.

  15. #15
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    Thanks for the agreement ithrynluin. The last example (Gandalf at Orthanc) was to refute just that speculation, though. If the ringbearers could speak telepathically, why didn't Gandalf ask for help?

    Of course, maybe he did and was just hiding it from the Council of Elrond, since the Three were highly secret. But the messengers of Elrond to Galadriel remain, as well as Galadriel's ignorance of Gandalf's fate until the Fellowship arrived. Guess I am not good as Devil's Advocate... For me the evidence says that the ring-bearers could not communicate telepathically at a distance, only through eye-contact.

    Maeglin is another instance to be added to those I mentioned, how he attempted to read the thoughts of Idril. It seems to me that this ability is natural with Elves (Maeglin was not a Calaquendi, only the son of one, and yet it appears he was specially skilled at mind-reading), and therefore probably with Maiar and Valar as well.

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