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Who are the Gnomes?

Gary Gamgee

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I'm sorry if this has already come up, i haven't really explored this particular part of the forum yet. But i have a question. I've just finished sil and i was flicking through one of the histories in a bookshop and i came across Gnomes. My first thought- what??? read a little and said- who??? who are they? are they part of ME? or something he wrote before? are they the original name for elves? and he had the good sense to change it or what? If all that wasn't enough i then read that Earendil went to England???????:confused: :confused: :confused:
 

Dengen-Goroth

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To answer your fine questions:
A) Gnomes were basically what Tolkien called Dwarves early on.
B) In Book of Lost Tales 5, Lost Road I believe, there is a tale where a man and his son venture back to Numenor, etc. Now keep in mind this was Tolkien's early work. He did not mean, in all that was ever pubished in HoME to be in script, he was very picky about what to be written from his works, and did not most of all want unfinished tales to be placed thus. This was only one of many stories, and sheds light on Numenor and other such Locals. It may seem confusing at first but stick with it. And read fall of Gondolin and Lay of Luthein. The Best works of Tolkien!:)
 
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Silverbeard

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Eh? I thought "Gnomes" referred to Noldor Elves?

When I first browsed through "Lost Road", it was after reading LOTR but before Silmarillion.... when the book mentioned Gnomes I thought it was the short garden ornament variety. Spoiled the experience. :confused:

In the Lay of Leithian, Gnomes referred to Noldor.
 

Cian

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Yes, "Gnome" was to suggest knowledge as Tolkien used it, associated with Greek gnómé "thought, intelligence".

It was indeed used to refer to the "Noldoli" of the Lost Tales and the Prof. continued to use the term for many years ~ it appears in earlier editions of The Hobbit for example, with: "swords of the High Elves of the West" replacing "swords of the Elves that are now called Gnomes" from "A Short Rest"
 

Camille

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Gary the Book of lost Tales 1 and 2 are the basis of the silmarillion stories, now that you have read the sil you could undestand better the Books of Lost Tales, they are very interesting to see the evolution.
but the HOME book are many (12??) I am looking for them too.
 

Gary Gamgee

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Thank you very much Camille, I was going to start with UT but i think I'll try those first then maybe go to UT, to be honest i'm a bit scared of UT the whole unfinished thing seems a bit unsatisfying.
 

Camille

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Hey no Gary!! I am sorry I did not undestand your question sorry but the UT are a really good book, the stories are not "finished" but they are really nice, You can get more details about Turin's childhood and about Tuor, and a lot of good information about the Istari, Númenor and the hobbit (why Gandalf picked Bilbo)
Mmmm maybe I am confussing you... but UT and the Book of lost tales are good books, maybe I would read UT first.:D
 
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Bilbo_Baggins

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Is The Silmarillion the first part of The Book of Lost tales
 

Mighty Sam

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Just to add....

ok now i'm a little confused:confused: on something maybe u can help. well i just finished reading the full narrative of the fall of gondolin and was really wondering how "gnomes", or dwarves, and elves (and i can't remember if men too) could live together in the same city. because i've never heard about any other place like that. ok that may sound stupid but humor me
 

Elfarmari

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Gnomes are Noldorin Elves, the elves who left Valinor and went to Middle Earth. I think the other elves mentioned are the 'dark elves' who never went to Valinor, and stayed in Middle Earth. In at least some of Tolkien's early writing, I think, the dwarves were somewhat evil, and would not live in the same city as elves.
 

Gary Gamgee

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Originally posted by Camille
Hey no Gary!! I am sorry I did not undestand your question sorry but the UT are a really good book, the stories are not "finished" but they are really nice, You can get more details about Turin's childhood and about Tuor, and a lot of good information about the Istari, Númenor and the hobbit (why Gandalf picked Bilbo)
Mmmm maybe I am confussing you... but UT and the Book of lost tales are good books, maybe I would read UT first.:D
Thank you again I just bought UT today and read a little on the bus it does look good.:)
 

BluestEye

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About Gnomes and Those Who Know

The following words are taken from the Notes on The Cottage Of Lost Play chapter of The Book Of Lost Tales I:

Gnomes: the Second Kindred, the Noldoli (later Noldor).

Also, on page 43 there is this quote of Tolkien's words appearing in a draft for the final paragraph of Appendix F to The LOTR:

"I have sometimes (not in this book) used 'Gnomes' for Noldor and 'Gnomish' for Noldorin. This I did, for whatever Paracelsus may have thought (if indeed he invented the name) to some 'Gnome' will still suggest Knowledge..."
I'm sure this clears all confusion for good :)

BluestEye
 

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