Sauron's physical form in the Third Age

Discussion in '"The Lord of the Rings"' started by CWOBrien, Feb 18, 2019.

  1. CWOBrien

    CWOBrien AlatarPolando

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2019
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Ireland
    The films obviously portray Sauron as confined to the form of lidless eye. But did Tolkien intend for this to be just a metaphor for his near-omniscience?

    Did Sauron in fact have a body during the third age? And if so, why didn't he come forth to lead the war effort himself?

    I like to imagine, if he was weakened by the loss of the ring, he might have conducted himself like the Almighty in the (admittedly awful) film 10,000 BC: this frail ruler, waited on hand and foot by his servants, exercising power from behind the scenes:



    Or maybe this would be more analogous to the Black Numenoreans ruling over the Haradrim.

    What do you think?
     
    Miguel likes this.
  2. Starbrow

    Starbrow Tolkien Fan

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2003
    Messages:
    1,299
    Likes Received:
    124
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Occupation:
    teacher
    Location:
    Wootton Major
    Home Page:
    http://
    Sauron had a physical body. Gollum says, ""Yes, He has only four fingers on the Black Hand, but they are enough," said Gollum shuddering.
     
  3. Erestor Arcamen

    Erestor Arcamen Archivist Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2004
    Messages:
    1,062
    Likes Received:
    263
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Home Page:
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/TheTolkienForumPage/
    There was a great thread in the Hall of Fire forum on TTF from a few years ago, Sauron Was Not A Lighthouse. It references Tolkien's letters with information of what form Sauron took in the Third Age.
     
    CirdanLinweilin and Miguel like this.
  4. Miguel

    Miguel Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2018
    Messages:
    372
    Likes Received:
    246
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Under a blankie
    Búrzishi Bringer of Truth, God-King in the East and South.



     
  5. Squint-eyed Southerner

    Squint-eyed Southerner Skulking near Archet

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2018
    Messages:
    791
    Likes Received:
    822
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Virginia, USA
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2019
    Erestor Arcamen likes this.
  6. CirdanLinweilin

    CirdanLinweilin The Wandering Wastrel

    Joined:
    May 13, 2016
    Messages:
    733
    Likes Received:
    369
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Writer
    Location:
    Mission Viejo, California
    I am just now realizing.

    Frodo of the Nine Fingers
    Sauron has NINE fingers.




    How am I *just* now realizing this?

    The One Ring does and doesn't like fingers apparently.


    CL
     
    Ithilethiel likes this.
  7. Erestor Arcamen

    Erestor Arcamen Archivist Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2004
    Messages:
    1,062
    Likes Received:
    263
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Home Page:
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/TheTolkienForumPage/
  8. Valandil

    Valandil High King at Annuminas

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    Messages:
    462
    Likes Received:
    54
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Architect
    Location:
    Casper, WY
    OR - the Ring likes fingers so much, it wants to bring them along.
     
  9. grendel

    grendel Registered User

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2003
    Messages:
    151
    Likes Received:
    7
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Occupation:
    engineer
    Location:
    the Heartland of America
    Home Page:
    http://
    I have always been fascinated by the passages where Pippin looked into the palantir, because it is the one time (in LOTR) that someone actually interacts with Sauron. I feel sure that if Pippin had seen a great eye, he would have said so, but he did not. He DID say "Then he came. He did not speak so that I could hear words. He just looked, and I understood." My impression anyway, is that he saw a face, a person.
    And I am endlessly amused by the idea of the Lord Sauron the Great, refugee from the War of Wrath, survivor of the wreck of Numenor, is peering into this stone and saying, somewhat confused, "Who ARE you?"
     
  10. Miguel

    Miguel Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2018
    Messages:
    372
    Likes Received:
    246
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Under a blankie
    Maybe Pippin was the last person he expected to see, or wanted to know his name just like Baggins.
     
  11. Þráinn Þórhallsson

    Þráinn Þórhallsson New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2019
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    1
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    reykjavik
    I did not particularly care for the sequels to the first live action Hobbit film but actually giving Sauron a physical form with a loss of fingers like in the LOTR books was a great improvement over the LOTR trilogy.