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Cats

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The most famous '''cats''' in the histories of [[Middle-earth]] were the cats of Queen [[Berúthiel]], nine black and one white, belonging to the Queen of King [[Tarannon]] of [[Gondor]].  As well, the cat '''[[Tevildo]]''', who developed through [[J.R.R. Tolkien|Tolkien's]] lifespan into [[Sauron]].
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{{disambig-more|Cats|[[Cat (disambiguation)]]}}
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[[Image:Paula DiSante - Reporting to Beruthiel.JPG|right|250px|thumb|[[Berúthiel]] and the white cat, by [[Paula DiSante]]]]
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{{quote|It won't sound too pretty to say you've caught the kitten and let the cat escape.|[[Gorbag]]<ref name="Lair">[[J.R.R. Tolkien]], ''[[The Lord of the Rings]]'', ''[[The Two Towers]]'', "[[Shelob's Lair (chapter)|Shelob's Lair]]"</ref>}}
  
[[Category:Animals]]
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'''Cats''' were animals that lived in [[Arda]].
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==History==
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Other than use as company, for which the [[Hobbits]] and [[Bree-men|Bree-folk]] used pets,<ref name="RitD"/><ref name="Sign"/> cats were used for the hunt<ref name="XR"/> and for spying.<ref name="UTI7"/> They were soft-footed,<ref name="XR">{{TT|Journey}}</ref> keensighted<ref name="Journey"/> and agile.<ref name="Cirith">{{TT|Stairs}}</ref>
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===The Cats of Berúthiel===
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{{main|Cats of Queen Berúthiel}}
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In the late ninth and possibly early tenth century of the [[Third Age]], [[Berúthiel]], wife of [[Tarannon]], King of Gondor, kept cats, nine black and one white. The marriage of Tarannon and Berúthiel was not a pleasant one: his love for the [[Belegaer|Sea]] drove her mad. She hated all making, all colours and elaborate adornment, and set her cats to spy on everyone, learning their secrets. Berúthiel conversed with the cats and read their mind and memory. She even set the white cat to spy on the others, to torment them. Berúthiel's reign of terror came to an end when Tarannon put her  and her cats on a ship and set it adrift. It was last seen passing [[Umbar]].<ref name="UTI7">{{UT|Istari}}, note 7</ref>
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All memory to them was erased (and the [[Book of the Kings]]), though legends of the cats and their ability to spy remain.<ref name="UTI7"/><ref name="Journey">{{FR|Journey}}</ref>
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===Other cats===
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Though there are no other cats that play a large role in history, some are mentioned in [[Hobbits|Hobbit]] folklore (for example, the Hobbit poem ''[[Cat (poem)|Cat]]''<ref name=Cat>{{ATB|12}}</ref>). [[Bob]], the ostler of the [[Prancing Pony]], had a cat. After [[Frodo Baggins]] sang ''[[The Man in the Moon Stayed Up Too Late]]'' (in which the ostler of an unnamed inn had a tipsy cat that played a five stringed fiddle), several patrons suggested that he had to the same.<ref name="Sign">{{FR|Sign}}</ref> Similarly, a cat, or "four-legs", was part of an old [[Riddle-game|riddle]] [[Bilbo Baggins|Bilbo]] asked [[Gollum]].<ref name="RitD">{{H|Riddles}}</ref>
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==Etymology==
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In [[Gnomish]], one of [[J.R.R. Tolkien|Tolkien]]'s early conceptions of an [[Elvish|Elven]] language, the word for "cat" is ''miog''; ''miaug'' or ''miog'' is "tom cat"; and ''miaulin'' is "she cat".<ref>{{PE|11}}, p. 57</ref>
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The [[Qenya]] word for a "kitten" is ''tis''.<ref>{{PE|21}}, p. 20</ref>
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==Other versions of the Legendarium==
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Perhaps the most important cat in the [[legendarium]] was [[Tevildo]], the Prince of Cats. Mentioned only in early writings, Tevildo was a demonic servant of Melko, who would eventually be replaced by [[Sauron]]<ref>[[J.R.R. Tolkien]], [[Christopher Tolkien]] (ed.), ''[[The Book of Lost Tales Part One]]'', "[[The Music of the Ainur (Book of Lost Tales)|The Music of the Ainur]]", page 52</ref>. He is the principal antagonist in ''[[The Tale of Tinuviel]]''.<ref>[[J.R.R. Tolkien]], [[Christopher Tolkien]] (ed.), ''[[The Book of Lost Tales Part Two]]'', "[[The Tale of Tinuviel]]"</ref>
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==Other fiction==
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[[Tinker]] is a cat appearing in ''[[Roverandom]]''.<ref>[[J.R.R. Tolkien]], ''[[Roverandom]]''</ref>
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==Inspiration==
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Especially in the case of Berúthiel and Tevildo, cats in Middle-earth are portrayed in a negative light. It could be argued that Tolkien was not a cat-person. When a cat-breeder asked permission to use names from ''[[The Lord of the Rings]]'' for her cats, Tolkien replied to [[Allen and Unwin|Allen & Unwin]]:
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{{quote|I fear that to me Siamese cats belong to the fauna of Mordor, but you need not tell the cat breeder that.|[[J.R.R. Tolkien]], [[Letter 219]]<ref>[[J.R.R. Tolkien]], [[Humphrey Carpenter]], [[Christopher Tolkien]] (eds.), ''[[The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien]]'', [[Letter 219]] (dated [[14 October|October 14]], [[1959]])</ref>}}
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==Portrayal in Adaptations ==
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'''2007: ''[[The Lord of the Rings Online]]'':'''
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:Cats are found throughout Middle-earth, espcially in Bree-land. There is a "cat lady" who has a house full of cats. Lore-masters can also have a non-combat cat pet.
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{{references}}
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[[Category:Cats| ]]
  
 
[[de:Katzen]]
 
[[de:Katzen]]

Latest revision as of 21:42, 25 September 2013

The name Cats refers to more than one character, item or concept. For a list of other meanings, see Cat (disambiguation).
Berúthiel and the white cat, by Paula DiSante
"It won't sound too pretty to say you've caught the kitten and let the cat escape."
Gorbag[1]

Cats were animals that lived in Arda.

Contents

[edit] History

Other than use as company, for which the Hobbits and Bree-folk used pets,[2][3] cats were used for the hunt[4] and for spying.[5] They were soft-footed,[4] keensighted[6] and agile.[7]

[edit] The Cats of Berúthiel

Main article: Cats of Queen Berúthiel

In the late ninth and possibly early tenth century of the Third Age, Berúthiel, wife of Tarannon, King of Gondor, kept cats, nine black and one white. The marriage of Tarannon and Berúthiel was not a pleasant one: his love for the Sea drove her mad. She hated all making, all colours and elaborate adornment, and set her cats to spy on everyone, learning their secrets. Berúthiel conversed with the cats and read their mind and memory. She even set the white cat to spy on the others, to torment them. Berúthiel's reign of terror came to an end when Tarannon put her and her cats on a ship and set it adrift. It was last seen passing Umbar.[5]

All memory to them was erased (and the Book of the Kings), though legends of the cats and their ability to spy remain.[5][6]

[edit] Other cats

Though there are no other cats that play a large role in history, some are mentioned in Hobbit folklore (for example, the Hobbit poem Cat[8]). Bob, the ostler of the Prancing Pony, had a cat. After Frodo Baggins sang The Man in the Moon Stayed Up Too Late (in which the ostler of an unnamed inn had a tipsy cat that played a five stringed fiddle), several patrons suggested that he had to the same.[3] Similarly, a cat, or "four-legs", was part of an old riddle Bilbo asked Gollum.[2]

[edit] Etymology

In Gnomish, one of Tolkien's early conceptions of an Elven language, the word for "cat" is miog; miaug or miog is "tom cat"; and miaulin is "she cat".[9]

The Qenya word for a "kitten" is tis.[10]

[edit] Other versions of the Legendarium

Perhaps the most important cat in the legendarium was Tevildo, the Prince of Cats. Mentioned only in early writings, Tevildo was a demonic servant of Melko, who would eventually be replaced by Sauron[11]. He is the principal antagonist in The Tale of Tinuviel.[12]

[edit] Other fiction

Tinker is a cat appearing in Roverandom.[13]

[edit] Inspiration

Especially in the case of Berúthiel and Tevildo, cats in Middle-earth are portrayed in a negative light. It could be argued that Tolkien was not a cat-person. When a cat-breeder asked permission to use names from The Lord of the Rings for her cats, Tolkien replied to Allen & Unwin:

"I fear that to me Siamese cats belong to the fauna of Mordor, but you need not tell the cat breeder that."
J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 219[14]

[edit] Portrayal in Adaptations

2007: The Lord of the Rings Online:

Cats are found throughout Middle-earth, espcially in Bree-land. There is a "cat lady" who has a house full of cats. Lore-masters can also have a non-combat cat pet.

[edit] References

  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Two Towers, "Shelob's Lair"
  2. 2.0 2.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, "Riddles in the Dark"
  3. 3.0 3.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, "At the Sign of the Prancing Pony"
  4. 4.0 4.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Two Towers, "Journey to the Cross-Roads"
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, "The Istari", note 7
  6. 6.0 6.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, "A Journey in the Dark"
  7. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Two Towers, "The Stairs of Cirith Ungol"
  8. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Adventures of Tom Bombadil, "Cat"
  9. J.R.R. Tolkien, "I-Lam na-Ngoldathon: The Grammar and Lexicon of the Gnomish Tongue", in Parma Eldalamberon XI (edited by Christopher Gilson, Arden R. Smith, and Patrick H. Wynne), p. 57
  10. J.R.R. Tolkien, "Qenya Noun Structure", in Parma Eldalamberon XXI (edited by Christopher Gilson, Patrick H. Wynne and Arden R. Smith), p. 20
  11. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Book of Lost Tales Part One, "The Music of the Ainur", page 52
  12. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Book of Lost Tales Part Two, "The Tale of Tinuviel"
  13. J.R.R. Tolkien, Roverandom
  14. J.R.R. Tolkien, Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 219 (dated October 14, 1959)