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COPIOUS NOTES... Due to the Battle of the Bridge and the difficulties it poses to research at the end of the previous chapter. Tolkien himself seems to have gone from one idea to another on it. You, of course, do not have to read these - but if you are inclined, I've tried to include every reference to this battle.
A/N – A little thing that bothered me – the word engineer. But I looked it up and its origins stem from around 1350. Also, the term is used in the Napoleonic era, so I’m pretty comfortable with using it here. [Origin: 1350–1400; engine + -eer; r. ME engin(e)our < AF engineor OF engigneor < ML ingeniātor, equiv. to ingeniā(re) to design, devise (v. deriv. of ingenium; see engine) + L -tor -tor
A/N – 1) Variags - Khand was the name of a land which lay to the south-east of Mordor and to the east of Near Harad. The Men of Khand were called Variags. Little is known about Khand or its people, but it appears to have been much like Rohan; the Variags were a people of riders. http://tolkiengateway.net/wiki/Khand; 2) Network - [Origin: 1550–60] I am always stunned when I find a word that I think is as modern as today and it turns out to be older than the hills!
A/N – VERY sorry for the copious notes, but the Battle of the Bridge is a difficult thing to research. Tolkien himself seems to have gone from one idea to another on it. You, of course, do not have to read these - but if you are inclined, I've tried to include every reference to this battle.
1) "Yet that hour, maybe, is not now far away. The Nameless Enemy has arisen again. Smoke rises once more from Orodruin that we call Mount Doom. The power of the Black Land grows and we are hard beset. When the Enemy returned our folk were driven from Ithilien, our fair domain east of the River, though we kept a foothold there and strength of arms. But this very year, in the days of June, sudden war came upon us out of Mordor, and we were swept away. We were outnumbered, for Mordor has allied itself with the Easterlings and the cruel Haradrim; but it was not by numbers that we were defeated. A power was there that we have not felt before.
"Some said that it could be seen, like a great black horseman, a dark shadow under the moon. Wherever he came a madness filled our foes, but fear fell on our boldest, so that horse and man gave way and fled. Only a remnant of our eastern force came back, destroying the last bridge that still stood amid the ruins of Osgiliath.
"I was in the company that held the bridge, until it was cast down behind us. Four only were saved by swimming: my brother and myself and two others. But still we fight on, holding all the west shores of Anduin; and those who shelter behind us give us praise, if ever they hear our name: much praise but little help. Only from Rohan now will any men ride to us when we call. FOTR: Book Two – Chapter Two: The Council of Elrond.
2) So it was that Sauron prepared two strokes – in which many saw the beginnings of the War of the Ring. They were made together. The Orcs assailed the realm of Thranduil, with orders to recapture Gollum; and the Lord of Morgul was sent forth openly to battle against Gondor. These things were done towards the end of June 3018. Thus Sauron tested the strength and preparedness of Denethor, and found them more than he had hoped. But that troubled him little, since be had used little force in the assault, and his chief purpose was that the coming forth of the Nazgűl should appear only as part of his policy of war against Gondor.
Therefore when Osgiliath was taken and the bridge broken Sauron stayed the assault, and the Nazgűl were ordered to begin the search for the Ring. But Sauron did not underesteem the powers and vigilance of the Wise, and the Nazgűl were commanded to act as secretly as they could. Now at that time the Chieftain of the Ringwraiths dwelt in Minas Morgul with six companions, while the second to the Chief, Khaműl the Shadow of the East, abode in Dol Guldur as Sauron's lieutenant, with one other as his messenger. 1 Unfinished Tales: Chapter IV (i): The Hunt for the Ring.
3) Sauron must then have been filled with anger and alarm. He resolved to use the Ringwraiths as soon as he could, for speed rather than secrecy was now important. Hoping to alarm his enemies and disturb their counsels with the fear of war (which he did not intend to make for some time), he attacked Thranduil and Gondor at about the same time. 7 He had these two additional objects: to capture or kill Gollum, or at least to deprive his enemies of him; and to force the passage of the bridge of Osgiliath, so that the Nazgűl could cross, while testing the strength of Gondor.
In the event, Gollum escaped. But the passage of the bridge was effected. The forces there used were probably much less than men in Gondor thought. In the panic of the first assault, when the Witch-king was allowed to reveal himself briefly in his full terror, 8 the Nazgűl crossed the bridge at night and dispersed northwards. Without belittling the valour of Gondor, which indeed Sauron found greater far than he had hoped, it is clear that Boromir and Faramir were able to drive back the enemy and destroy the bridge, only because the attack had now served main purpose. 7 Both here and in the Tale of Years the assault on Osgiliath is dated the 20th of June. Unfinished Tales: Chapter IV (ii): The Hunt for the Ring.
4) 8 This statement no doubt relates to Boromir's account of the battle at Osgiliath which he gave to the Council of Elrond: "A power was there that we have not felt before. Some said that it could be seen, like a great black horseman, a dark shadow under the moon." Unfinished Tales: Notes.
5) "I sat at night by the waters of Anduin, in the grey dark under the young pale moon, watching the ever-moving stream; and the sad reeds were rustling. So do we ever watch the shores nigh Osgiliath, which our enemies now partly hold, and issue from it to harry our lands…” The Two Towers: Book IV - Chapter Five: The Windows on the West.
6) “And the Fell Riders, less than a year ago they won back the crossings, and many of our best men were slain. Boromir it was that drove the enemy at last back from this western shore, and we hold still the near half of Osgiliath. For a little while. But we await now a new onslaught there. Maybe the chief onslaught of the war that comes." The Return of the King: Book V – Chapter One: Minas Tirith.
A/N – 1) I decided when writing TA 2990 that there could have been a southern 'Henneth-Annűn' and I named it Henneth-Amrűn for those of you who don't quite remember that chapter.
2) The southern beacon hills are never named, but they are there. I've 'created' the names for two of them. ROTK: Bk 5, Ch 1: Minas Tirith.
3) Pie recipe. Haven't tried it, but for some reason, the Muse wanted Chocolate Pecan Pie for Faramir! http://www.cooks.com/rec/view/0,1837,155177-250201,00.html
4) Demolition of strategically important infrastructure:
As late as the sixteenth century, a raiding party that wanted to destroy a bridge, a dam, or a mill usually had to do so by means of fire or hard manual labor. For example, in January 1544 a French force raided the strategically important Po Bridge at Carignano, in the hope of destroying it and crippling the Imperialist transport network in the area. The raiders were provided with certain 'artifices of fire', which they were to attach to the bridge's posts. These gunpowder-based fireworks were supposed to ignite the bridge's posts and burn them down to the waterline.
The raiders managed to surprise the guards and take the bridge. However, when the pioneers attached the fireworks to the bridge and lit them, the fireworks made a lot of noise and smoke but no apparent damage. Luckily, the French commanders, who were skeptical about these ingenious inventions, also brought with them several dozen workmen supplied with axes, hatchets and saws. Even so it took them more than four hours to accomplish the mission, and it was daylight by the time the bridge was broken. http://www.boydell.co.uk/specialopsextr.htm
5) Demolition – used around the mid 1500’s – that make sit old enough for my use. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/demolition
6) In that siege and burning the Tower of the Stone of Osgiliath was destroyed, and the palantír was lost in the waters. LOTR; Appendix A: (iv) Gondor and the Heirs of Anárion. 7) The Tower of Stone - Between the two parts of the city was a great stone bridge with towers and houses upon it, and there were a number of lesser bridges as well. On the river banks were landings for the ships that carried people and trade goods up and down the Anduin from Wilderland in the north to the Bay of Belfalas in the south. http://www.tuckborough.net/towns.html#Osgiliath
A/N - 1) “On June 20, 3018, Sauron sent the Nazgul forth from Mordor. They led an attack on Osgiliath, where Gondor had an outpost to defend against the crossing of the Anduin. Sauron's purpose was two-fold: He wanted to test Gondor's defenses and he wanted to provide cover for the Nazgul's real mission, which was to seek the Shire and the Ring.” http://www.tuckborough.net/sauron.html 2) Tharni is a Westron word. It is an older form of tharantīn, which means "quarter"… In Gondor, it was a silver coin (Sindarin canath), worth one fourth of a Kastar, or Mirian. The Peoples of Middle-earth, The Appendix on Languages, page 48. http://tolkiengateway.net/wiki/Tharni. Since I have the Steward’s family and their men speaking mostly Sindarin, I will go with the word canath for this. 3) The chief city of this southern realm was Osgiliath, through the midst of which the Great River flowed; and the Númenóreans built there a great bridge, upon which there were towers and houses of stone wonderful to behold.... The Silmarillion, Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age 1437 III, during the Kin-strife: At last [Eldacar] was besieged in Osgiliath, and held it long, until hunger and the greater forces of the rebels drove him out, leaving the city in flames. In that siege and burning the Tower of the Dome of Osgiliath was destroyed, and the palantír was lost in the waters. The Return of the King, LoTR Appendix A, Annals of the Kings and Rulers: Gondor and the Heirs of Anárion From HASA’s research library… http://www.henneth-annun.net/resources/places_view.cfm?PLID=383
Characters besides the usual (so far):
Elatan – engineer
Galdor – Captain of Amon Din
Gwinhir – Captain of Pelargir
Hador – Captain of Cair Andros
Hundor – Council member
Meneldil - engineer
Oromendil† – Captain of Osgiliath
Tarcil – Lord of Lebennin
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