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Had I a host of Elves......

Tar-Palantir

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In "The Ring Goes South", Elrond says that "had I a host of Elves in armour of the Elder Days, it would avail little, save to arouse the power of Mordor." But, earlier in "The Council of Elrond", he says (talking about the Last Alliance) "It recalled to me the glory of the Elder Days and the hosts of Beleriand, so many great princes and captains were assembled. And yet not so many, nor so fair, as when Thangorodrim was broken...."

He clearly is saying that the armies of the Elder Days were stronger than the Last Alliance. The Last Alliance defeated Sauron (only Isildur's inability to get rid of the Ring stopped the victory from being complete). There would seem to be a contradiction here unless....

1) Sauron was much stronger at the end of the Third Age than the Second. But, he had the Ring in the War of the Last Alliance and he didn't during the War of the Ring.

2) Sauron was stronger at the end of the Third Age than Morgoth was at the end of the First. I don't think that's the case.

3) Elrond means "host" as just one host and not an entire army (by the way, how many are in a host?).

I have to believe that the Elven armies of the First Age would give Sauron a serious run for his money. Any thoughts?
 

Tar-Elenion

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The direct comparison is to the Host of Valinor (which would also be the only army of the West Elrond saw in the First Age). That the Host of Valinor was more powerful than that of the Last Alliance is doubtlessly true.
 

Tar-Palantir

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Originally posted by Tar-Elenion
The direct comparison is to the Host of Valinor (which would also be the only army of the West Elrond saw in the First Age). That the Host of Valinor was more powerful than that of the Last Alliance is doubtlessly true.
Ok, I stand corrected that the Host of Valinor were responsible for the breaking of Thangorodrim (although by saying "princes" and "captains" I think Elrond was referring to Elves and Men). But, the Vanyar were present. And don't you think that they, along with the Noldor and Sindar of Beleriand, would form a more powerful army than the Last Alliance? The Last Alliance had Gil-Galad, Elrond, Cirdan, Elendil, and Isildur as their big guns. As tough as they were, I'll take Fingolfin, Finrod, Turgon, Galadriel, Thingol, the Sons of Feanor, the other princes of the Noldor, etc...

So why would Elrond think that the First Age team weren't enough for Sauron in the Third Age (without the Ring) when the Last Alliance were able to be all they could be against Sauron (with the Ring)?
 
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Harad

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- And I will choose you companions to go with you, as far as they will or fortune allows. The number must be few, since your hope is in speed and secrecy. Had I a host of Elves in armour of the Elder Days, it would avail little, save to arouse the power of Mordor.
Elrond means a small "host" not an army, similar in size to the Fellowship that is eventually chosen.
 

Tar-Palantir

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Originally posted by Harad


Elrond means a small "host" not an army, similar in size to the Fellowship that is eventually chosen.
I don't think so Harad. It seems to me that Elrond is trying to show why the number of the Company must be few and is contrasting that to a "host". By the way, I just looked up "host" in Webster's and came up with: "1. an army. 2. A large number: multitude".
 
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Harad

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A large host or army of Elder Day Elves would be more powerful than the Elven component of the Last Alliance. The only "out" is if the Numenorean component of the Last Alliance were SO much more powerful than the present Gondor Army that the superior Elven force wouldnt matter.

Therefore by his juxtaposition of words I feel a small number is what is referred to.
 

Tar-Palantir

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Originally posted by Harad
A large host or army of Elder Day Elves would be more powerful than the Elven component of the Last Alliance. The only "out" is if the Numenorean component of the Last Alliance were SO much more powerful than the present Gondor Army that the superior Elven force wouldnt matter.

Therefore by his juxtaposition of words I feel a small number is what is referred to.
'Twould seem we're at loggerheads on the size of a host and our interpretation of Elrond's use of the word, Harad (I can't believe I just used the word "loggerheads"). I guess one person's "small number" is another's "army".

I can buy your "out" theory - in theory. But I think the Elves of the First Age would more than offset the (relatively) weak Gondor contingent.
 
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Harad

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Tar-Pal,
I dont buy your "loggerheads" theory. I am with you that "host" usually means larger than "9" and that:

Elder Day Elves + Gondor ~ Last Alliance Elves + Numenor.

But that leaves us saying that Elrond lost his mind. Unless of course:

Sauron with Ring at end of 2nd Age << Sauron without Ring at end of 3rd Age
 

Tar-Elenion

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Originally posted by Tar-Palantir
Ok, I stand corrected that the Host of Valinor were responsible for the breaking of Thangorodrim (although by saying "princes" and "captains" I think Elrond was referring to Elves and Men).
There were Elves (the Vanyar, the Noldor of Aman) and Men (those few left of the three house of the Edain fought on the side of the Valar) who participated in the War of Wrath.

But, the Vanyar were present. And don't you think that they, along with the Noldor and Sindar of Beleriand, would form a more powerful army than the Last Alliance?
Please clarify.
At what point in the War of the Jewels?
And just the Vanyar or are you including the whole host of Valinor?
If the Vanyar (fresh from Aman) had joined with the Noldor at their height in Beleriand (at which point the Edainic allies of the Noldor had grown to their strongest as well, i.e. just before the Bragollach), and if all the Sindar of Beleriand were united with them at that point, then probably it would have been more powerful than the L.A.(of course the realms of the Noldor and Sindar were never completely united in the struggle, and the Vanyar only came with the Ainur and Noldor who had not been exiled (and noncombatant Teleri) and only after the Beleriandic Elves and Men had been decimated.

The Last Alliance had Gil-Galad, Elrond, Cirdan, Elendil, and Isildur as their big guns. As tough as they were, I'll take Fingolfin, Finrod, Turgon, Galadriel, Thingol, the Sons of Feanor, the other princes of the Noldor, etc...
Again clarify please. At what point?
Galadriel fled Beleriand. Thingol was a non-participant for the most part. Turgon was a non-participant for much of the time. The sons of Feanor had their own agenda. Etc. etc.
 

Beleg Strongbow

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Originally posted by Tar-Elenion


Again clarify please. At what point?
Galadriel fled Beleriand. Thingol was a non-participant for the most part. Turgon was a non-participant for much of the time. The sons of Feanor had their own agenda. Etc. etc.


Elrond ment that the elves would have no chance of secrecy in trying to get the ring into mount doom. They would definetley help keep saurons forces at bay but it would be really hard trying 2 force there way into mordor.
 

Tar-Elenion

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Okay, but I am not sure at all what that has to do with my post. I was asking Tar-Palantir to clarify what he meant, not what Elrond meant.
 

Tar-Palantir

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Originally posted by Tar-Elenion


Again clarify please. At what point?
Galadriel fled Beleriand. Thingol was a non-participant for the most part. Turgon was a non-participant for much of the time. The sons of Feanor had their own agenda. Etc. etc.
Elrond didn't specify who was to be included or excluded from his hypothetical "host". He just said "a host of elves from the Elder Days....". So if I'm drafting a host from the First Age to go up against Sauron, I'm stacking the deck with all the great ones
:)

No offense to Gil-Galad or Elendil, but I'm guessing that an army of Noldor from the First Age would mop the floor with the Last Alliance army.

Now, maybe it's like Beleg said above that Elrond meant that the army couldn't get the Ring to Mt Doom to be destroyed. But that's not what he said; and I think what he said was wrong.

Of course, maybe he was just trying to bolster the confidence of the Company of the Ring, considering that he was sending only nine of 'em
on an apparently "hopeless" mission :)
 
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Harad

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Tar-Pal,

Maybe youre right and it was just a good "pep" talk. Since he couldnt produce such a "host" talk was cheap.
 

Thorin

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"had I a host of Elves in armour of the Elder Days, it would avail little, save to arouse the power of Mordor."


I agree with Harad. (SURPRISE!!! :D )I don't think that Elrond was saying the Elves of the Elder Days COULD not do it but that it wouldn't avail anything because the quest was not about strength by that point in time...Therefore, the Elder Days had the strongest armies, but the whole point of the quest was secrecy.

They would have done no good, otherwise, you might as well have skipped the whole Frodo and Sam quest, hence, no LoTR as we know it.
 

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