Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Theoden Tribute

Now, I know I have griped before about how much I hate the fact that Theoden King ignores his nephew in the movies and that he questions why Rohan should aid Gondor in the War of the Ring (HELLO, DUDE! YOUR ANCESTORS SWORE ON THE PAINS OF HELL!), but he is still a Cool Old Man.

For instance, the scene where he rides along the front of his army, clanking his sword (the flat of it, we hope) against his Riders' spears is particularly epic when you realize that Bernard Hill is left-handed (as is Harry Sinclair, who played Isildur...) and so he was doing it with his weaker hand. It makes it that much more awesome.

In the book, he's at least ten years older than he is portrayed in the movie, making his decision to personally lead his men to war all that more inspiring. He's not descended from Elves (and a Maia), as is Aragorn; he's just an old mortal man who is giving it his all. And that deserves some recognition.

That gif is not mine. You can see the little marker at the bottom right, yes? It says: LiveByTheCreed.Tumblr. So it is definitely not mine. I don't know how to make gifs. I keep saying I should google it to find out, but I obviously haven't.
In honor of my last statement:

I obviously can't stay on track even when I set out to make a post a tribute to one (just one!) character. I am that sad.

Back on track now, I swear!

Now this is something I really did do myself, and it's probably not very legible:

Click on it, and it will get bigger.

Anyway, the rhyme was chanted at Theoden's funeral (one of the most moving scenes in the book, actually, and which was naturally therefore cut from the movie - I particularly like the acknowledgement of Eomer as king after the names of all the previous kings were recited). This is how it goes:

Out of doubt, out of dark, to the day's rising,
He rode singing in the sun, sword unsheathing.
Hope he rekindled, and in hope ended,
Over death, over dread, over doom lifted,
Out of loss out of life, unto long glory.
What I find fascinating is that this matches very closely a stanza Eomer chants at the Battle of the Pelennor Fields (another epic moment. *sigh* They just hated Eomer). However, while Eomer's stanza is of defiance, Theoden's exemplifies pure hope and even happiness, in a way. This is Eomer's, for comparison:
Out of doubt, out of dark, to the day's rising,
I came singing in the sun, sword unsheathing.
To hope's end I rode, and to heart's breaking,
Now for wrath, now for ruin, and a red nightfall!
I'm doing that one from memory, of course, so it's entirely possible I have skipped a line or something...
Whatever. I love the House of Eorl so much. Elves may be so last year, but Rohan is still in season. Rohan is always in season.
In Pace Christi,

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