🧙 The Tolkien Forum 🧝

Welcome to our forum! Register a free account today to become a member! Once signed in, you'll be able to participate on this site by adding your own topics and posts, as well as connect with other members through your own private inbox! Plus you won't see ads ;)

Were Dwarves Alchemists?

Ancalagon

Quality, not Quantity!
Joined
Aug 20, 2001
Messages
1,786
Reaction score
10
What do you think? Is there any evidence that would prove Dwarves were the first to study alchemy, especially those of the Iron Mountains?
 

Lord Aragorn

King of Gondor
Joined
Dec 27, 2001
Messages
89
Reaction score
3
Location
Ohio
I don't believe I've seen any evidence of Dwarves practicing any form of Alchemy during my readings. The Dwarves seem to do alright mining their gold and don't need to try to make it from other metals.
 

Anduril

Nil desperandum!
Joined
Feb 7, 2002
Messages
142
Reaction score
0
Location
Deep in the forest of my soul
As long as I remember there's no text in the books that states Dwarves were Alchemists (in the full sense of the word).
They were extremely dotated in the moisturing of several metals and mining...

If we take this facts in a expanded idea, MAYBE the dwarves could develop something called Alchemy...
 

Ancalagon

Quality, not Quantity!
Joined
Aug 20, 2001
Messages
1,786
Reaction score
10
There is no evidence to suport this theory. However, who else on Middle-Earth would have had both the desire and understanding to delve into Alchemy? It had to start soewhere, my opinion is that Dwarven lust for gold may have been the driving force for dabbling in this ancient art. If Dwarves were so successful as metallurgists, would it not be a natural progression for them to begin to study the art of Alchemy?
 

Tao

Shôgun
Joined
Feb 19, 2002
Messages
72
Reaction score
0
Location
Minas Tirith
I don't think dwarves were alchemists, they were just very interested in fire/stone/mining.
This is just my opinion
 

Goro Shimura

Scribe of the Eldanyárë
Joined
Dec 30, 2001
Messages
416
Reaction score
0
Location
Meneltarma
Originally posted by Lord Aragorn
Really??? Haven't heard that before.
Doesn't it say in the appendix that "it takes gold to make gold?"

Doesn't it say somewhere that the foundation of every dwarf hoard was a ring of power??

Or did I dream this?
 

Thorondor

Indie kid to the end
Joined
Sep 8, 2001
Messages
164
Reaction score
0
Location
My heart will always be in the land of sky blue wa
Originally posted by Goroshimura


Doesn't it say in the appendix that "it takes gold to make gold?"

Doesn't it say somewhere that the foundation of every dwarf hoard was a ring of power??

Or did I dream this?
It does say that, but I wouldn't take it to really mean that if you left a dwarven ring in a empty room and waited, and checked later you would find the room full of gold. I always have taken those sayings to mean that one who had the ring would get a kind of "luck" in prosperity and wealth. But that is just my opinion.
 
M

Mormegil

Guest
Perhaps the Dwarves were the first people to try to turn Lead, (or at least Iron), into Gold.:)
 

Confusticated

Registered User
Joined
Apr 19, 2002
Messages
4,438
Reaction score
5
Location
USA
Originally posted by Thorondor
It does say that, but I wouldn't take it to really mean that if you left a dwarven ring in a empty room and waited, and checked later you would find the room full of gold. I always have taken those sayings to mean that one who had the ring would get a kind of "luck" in prosperity and wealth. But that is just my opinion.
I took it more as greed rather than luck.

As for alchemy, I don't remember reading anything about it. It wouldn't surprise me if I found that said somewhere though. I think it is fitting enough.
 

BlackCaptain

Vast Menace of Despair
Joined
Dec 22, 2002
Messages
2,520
Reaction score
2
I doubt it. Alchemy involves the mixture of rare plants and fungi and all that. Dwarves work with rock, steel, and earth. While elves would be more for practicing Alchemy, the Dwarves would be practicing smithieing.
 

Ithrynluin

seeker of solace
Staff member
Joined
Apr 27, 2002
Messages
4,623
Reaction score
11
Originally posted by BlackCaptain
I doubt it. Alchemy involves the mixture of rare plants and fungi and all that. Dwarves work with rock, steel, and earth. While elves would be more for practicing Alchemy, the Dwarves would be practicing smithieing.
ALCHEMY:

1 : a medieval chemical science and speculative philosophy aiming to achieve the transmutation of the base metals into gold, the discovery of a universal cure for disease, and the discovery of a means of indefinitely prolonging life
2 : a power or process of transforming something common into something special
3 : an inexplicable or mysterious transmuting

As has been said before, I too like to think of the Dwarven rings as objects that mainly bring "Irish luck":p to the Dwarves, and once dwarves discover a vein of gold, more of these will "magically" appear (or be found, to their eyes) because of the Ring. These constant findings would make them greedier and greedier and would eventually be the cause of their corruption.

Anyway, I do believe that Dwarves practice some sort of alchemy, despite the lack of proof. Their lust for gold was proof enough that they would try to experiment to gain wealth, especially if they lived in an area that was not rich in gold (like the Blue Mountains, if I'm not mistaken, according to Thorin Oakenshield).
 

Elfarmari

Tingilindë
Joined
Jan 5, 2002
Messages
516
Reaction score
1
Location
New Mexico, USA
Perhaps alchemy was begun by Black Numenoreans, or other evil men. This seems the sort of thing Black Numenoreans would lust after, perhaps believing that Dwarves could make gold 'appear'. Maybe alchemy was begun by the Nazgul before they became wraiths?
 

Thread suggestions

Top