Saturday, October 1, AD 2011
Something for the weekend. The lighting of the beacons sequence from the The Return of the King. This sequence sets up my favorite scene in the entire trilogy. Aragorn sees the lighted beacon fire and runs to Theoden, King of Rohan, and asks for aid for Gondor. There is a long pause before Theoden can bring himself to commit his people to another desperate war, but when he makes his decision he does so decisively. Go here to view the scene.
Aragorn: The Beacons of Minas Tirith! The Beacons are lit! Gondor calls for aid!
Theoden: And Rohan will answer. Muster the Rohirrim.
Theoden is my favorite character in the trilogy. A King who doubts he is worthy of his sires, he makes himself into the heroic and wise leader his people need in a terrible time in their history. His spirit is well set forth in this quote as he replies to Saruman’s “peace” overture:
“We will have peace. Yes, we will have peace, we will have peace when you and all your works have perished — and the works of your dark master to whom you would deliver us. You are a liar, Saruman, and a corrupter of men’s hearts. You hold out your hand to me, and I perceive only a finger of the claw of Mordor. Cruel and cold! Even if your war on me was just as it was not, for were you ten times as wise you would have no right to rule me and mine for your own profit as you desired — even so, what will you say of your torches in Westfold and the children that lie dead there? And they hewed Hama’s body before the gates of the Hornburg, after he was dead. When you hang from a gibbet at your window for the sport of your own crows, I will have peace with you and Orthanc. So much for the House of Eorl. A lesser son of great sires am I, but I do not need to lick your fingers. Turn elsewhither. But I fear your voice has lost its charm.”
Go here to view the scene.