March 29th, 2007

Legolas silhouette

Hey Dol, Derry Dol, Ring Dong a Dillo!

Rereading Fellowship of the Ring. I can totally see why Jackson chopped out Tom Bombadil ... it'd be sorta like having Ronald McDonald pop up a third of the way through Saving Private Ryan. Of course, if you lose Tom Bombadil, you lose the barrow wights, who were kinda neat. At least Old Man Willow got back in, and in the context of the movies, Treebeard was a good choice to have deal with that.

I can also see why he fast-forwarded over the parts in the Shire, although I do miss the night at Farmer Maggot's house, just because I've had that experience of becoming friends as an adult with somebody you were terrified of as a kid. The meeting with Gildor is nice and has some great lines ("Do not meddle in the affairs of Wizards, for they are subtle and quick to anger." "Go not to the elves for counsel, for they will say both no and yes!") but doesn't really hurt to leave out. On the other hand, Merry and Pippin having planned to come with Frodo all along does make more sense than "*crash!* Oh, hi Frodo, let's tag along on a deadly quest to the far side of the continent!"

It's interesting; when I saw the scene at Bucklebury Ferry in the theaters, I remember thinking that was pretty much how it happened in the book, with Frodo jumping to the boat and everything, and that it was neat that it made it in. But no, in the book they're already well out on the river when the ringwraith shows up. Wonder what I was thinking of?

-The Gneech
Party Guy

Happy Birthday, mooivos!

For your present, here's today's Forgotten English!

Gabriel's hounds
At Wednesbury, the colliers going to their pits early in the morning hear the noise of a "pack of hounds" in the air, to which they give the name Gabriel's hounds, though the more sober and judicious take them only to be wild geese making this noise in their flight.
--White Kennett's Lansdowne Manuscript of Provincial Words, c. 1700


These phantom hounds, jet black and breathing flames ... frequent bleak and dreary moors on tempestuous nights, and woe betide the unlucky wretch who chances to cross their path.
--E. M. Wright's Rustic Speech and Folklore, 1914


Gabriel-ratchet, a name for a yelping sound at night, like the cry of hounds.
--Rev. John Atkinson's Forty Years in a Moorland Parish, 1891


Feast Day of St. Dominic,
a patron of astronomers. Reginald Scot's The Discoverie of Witchcraft (1584) commented on diverse bogeymen of his time: "[They] have so frayed us with bull-beggars, witches, urchins, elves, hags, satyrs, pans, faunes, sylvans ... the spoorney, nymphs, changelings, incubus ... the man in the oke, the hell-waine, and such other bugbears that we were afraid of our own shadowes."

Sounds like an average day in a D&D campaign.

My late uncle Pat (the archetypal Irish Catholic priest if ever there was one) was called Dominic in his parish, actually. I used to call up there occasionally and ask for Patrick Eagan, only to have them say, "Who? Oh, you mean Father Dominic!" Used to confuse the heck out of me ... and to a certain extent it still does.

-The Gneech
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