Tolkien Gateway

Talk:Reunited Kingdom

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===Valley of Orthanc===
 
===Valley of Orthanc===
 
"But I will give to Ents all this valley to do with it as they will, so long as they keep a watch upon Orthanc and see that none enter it without my leave". This sounds like the valley of Orthanc is not part of the Reunited Kingdom, but that the tower of Orthanc was still part of the Reunited Kingdom, because the King wanted no one to enter without his leave.
 
"But I will give to Ents all this valley to do with it as they will, so long as they keep a watch upon Orthanc and see that none enter it without my leave". This sounds like the valley of Orthanc is not part of the Reunited Kingdom, but that the tower of Orthanc was still part of the Reunited Kingdom, because the King wanted no one to enter without his leave.
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Revision as of 09:29, 23 November 2020

Contents

Map in the Infobox

The map in the infobox is not canoncial. The map incorrectly does not show Anórien to be a part of the Reunited Kingdom of Arnor and Gondor. Anórien was still a part of Gondor during the War of the Ring and was never a part of Rohan. Although The Lord of the Rings does never mention the borders of the reunited kingdom it is unlikely that it did not include Anórien, which was still a part of Gondor during the War of the Ring. The Mering stream is mentioned as the eastern border of Rohan in Unfinished Tales Cirion and Eorl and the Friendship of Gondor and Rohan (iii) Cirion and Eorl in the paragraph with the footnotes 45 and 46 and on the dotted red line with the label "Border of Rohan" on the Map of Rohan, Gondor and Mordor that is included in some editions of The Return of the King. --Akhorahil 16:43, 16 November 2020 (UTC)

I created that map many years ago, based on one by Fonstad. Note that "many years ago" means that I also had different understanding about canon and accuracy of information and I wasn't much concerned about how accurate to canon was. I am not sure if Fonstad's text accompanying the map give some textual evidence or rationale about her layout. If the map contradicts canonical information, I don't have anything to say in favor of the map. Sage 08:55, 17 November 2020 (UTC)
I'm looking at my copy of the Atlas right now and I suspect that what happened is that at the time you created the page map, you may have confused the placement of the label "Druadan" for the indicated location of the enclave on the map itself, which is very small, partially overlapping the mountains, and quite easy to miss. (I never noticed it before until now, when I was specifically looking for it.) I'll see if I can gin up a new map sometime in the next week or so that conforms more closely to the known facts. --75.118.149.152 16:25, 17 November 2020 (UTC)
Oh to be exact the base map is a fan-made map I found on Wikipedia. What I did was defining the "Kingdom" according to Fonstad, as I didn't want to use the canonical one for copyright reasons. So the labels and other features of the map aren't mine. Sage 17:50, 17 November 2020 (UTC)

Geography

The information about the borders of the Reunited Kingdom during the reign of Elessar is partly wrong and partly speculative. It is wrong that they correspond to Gondor's borders at its largest extension and it is wrong that the field of Celebrant or the river Limlight is the northern border of the Reunited Kingdom, because that is the northern border of Rohan and Aragorn renewed the grant of Rohan to Éomer. In the Lord of the Rings the borders of the reunited kingdom of Arnor and Gondor during the reign of Elessar are not mentioned (especially not in Appendix A II The Kings of the Mark Third Line). The exact status of the Shire, of the Treegarth of Isengard and of Drúadan Forest are not known from the wording of the grants. --Akhorahil 16:43, 16 November 2020 (UTC)

I took a stab at remaking the map, but I could use some feedback on the northern border of Arnor and the northeastern border of Gondor. WIP viewable here: https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/286081897925312512/779616303756869682/fourth-age.png
Note: not final quality; I plan to apply an airbrush effect to the border fills to smooth them out a bit and also add the kingdoms in the northeast (East Lórien, Beornings & Woodmen, Woodland Realm, Dale, Erebor & Iron Hills) just for completeness' sake. My current intention is to depict hard borders at rivers and other clear landmarks, while having somewhat airbrushed borders at mountain ranges, and very soft airbrushed borders at stretches of empty land (such as at the aforementioned northern edge of Arnor and the northeastern edge of Gondor).
I don't feel at all troubled at the idea of simply showing the enclaves of the Shire & Westmarch, Drúadan Forest, and Nan Curunír/Watchwood in different colors and leaving it to the reader to determine exactly to what extent the authority of the King applied in each.
The difficulty I'm having is that I genuinely don't know how far Aragorn pushed Gondor's claims. Nothing in the references cited in the Atlas of ME suggests to me that the borders shown on the Fonstad map of the Fourth Age that informed the previous version of the map is supported by text. RK/Steward[1] merely states that Aragorn "pardoned" the Easterlings and "made peace" with the Haradrim, and AppA/Gondor[2] states that Elessar "subdued" Umbar. We know from AppA/Mark[3] that Aragorn and Éomer rode to war far in the south and east of the Sea of Rhȗn, but we don't know if these wars had anything to do with enforcing border claims. When Tolkien meant "conquered" in other contexts he was usually very clear in his diction, but the wording relating to Gondor's relations with the former allies of Sauron seems to deliberately fall short of that.
I don't think it likely that Tolkien intended Elessar to claim the absolute maximum extent of the lands ever claimed in the imperial dominion of Gondor. This is both based on his choice of words and on the fact that the lands of the east never appear to have been meaningfully settled or governed by Gondor even in the short time in which they were nominally within the borders of the Kingdom, which was in any case many centuries before the Fourth Age. Moreover, there's already a lot of repopulation to be done in Ithilien, Annúminas, Fornost, and Arnor more generally, so I don't know where Aragorn would find the numbers of people necessary to also settle the East.
That said, I can't justify with explicit references my choice to assign Harondor or Enedwaith to the Reunited Kingdom either, so this may ultimately be a matter of opinion. Perhaps it would be for the best if I marked debatable or questionable claim areas with a cross-hatch or lighter shade as compared to the core regions of the RK? I would consider the core regions of the RK that we know were reclaimed to consist of Gondor, Ithilien, and the known settlement zone of Arnor centered around the cities of former Arthedain. All other areas - Cardolan, Rhudaur, parts of Arthedain, Enedwaith, Harondor, southern Rhovanion - would be depicted as "questionable claims." --75.118.149.152 07:53, 23 November 2020 (UTC)

Shire

It is only mentioned that the Shire was made a "King Elessar issues an edict that Men are not to enter the Shire, and he makes it a Free Land under the protection of the Northern Scepre" in Appendix B Later Events concerning the Members of the Fellowship of the Ring S.R. 1427, but not whether this means autonomy and self-rule as part of Arnor or it not being a part of Arnor. However it is mentioned that the Hobbits say "Our King, we call him" about Elessar in Appendix A I (iii) The North-kingdom and the Dúnedain. It appears odd to calle somebody "our" King if one's Country is not part of the Kingdom. It is also mentioned that King Elessar made the Thain of the Shire, the Master (of Buckland) and the Mayor (of the Shire) "Counsellors of the North-kingdom" that Appendix B Later Events concerning the Members of the Fellowship of the Ring S.R. 1434. It would seem odd to make leaders of a realm councillors of a kingdom if the leaders of that realm are not part of the Kingdom. In addition, the Shire used to be part of the Kingdom of Arnor and of the Kingdom of Arthedain before. --Akhorahil 16:43, 16 November 2020 (UTC)

Drúadan forest

It is only stated that Aragorn has his heralds announce "The Forest of Drúadan he gives to Ghân-buri-Ghân and his folk, to be their own forwever; and hereafter let no man enter it without their leave" in The Return of the King, Many Partings. "to be their own forever" and "let no man enter it without their leave" sounds very much like Drúadan forest is not part of the Reunited Kingdom, because otherwise he could have said that he as the King issues an edict that Men are not to enter the Forest of Drúadan like the edict that he issued for the Shire.

Valley of Orthanc

"But I will give to Ents all this valley to do with it as they will, so long as they keep a watch upon Orthanc and see that none enter it without my leave". This sounds like the valley of Orthanc is not part of the Reunited Kingdom, but that the tower of Orthanc was still part of the Reunited Kingdom, because the King wanted no one to enter without his leave.


References

  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Steward and the King"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, "The Númenorean Kings", "Gondor and the Heirs of Anárion"
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, "The House of Eorl", "The Kings of the Mark"