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Lay of Leithian Canto I

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This first [[Cantos of the Lay of the Leithian|Canto]] of the [[Lay of Leithian]] tells of [[Elu Thingol]], and [[Lúthien Tinúviel]] and [[Doriath]]. It runs to 98 lines, one of the shorter cantos if not the shortest save the unfinished last one.
+
This first [[Cantos of the Lay of the Leithian|Canto]] of the [[Lay of Leithian]] tells of [[Elu Thingol]], and [[Lúthien Tinúviel]] and [[Doriath]]. It runs to 98 lines, the shortest canto save the last, unfinished one.
  
 
== The Canto ==
 
== The Canto ==
 +
<blockquote>A [[Elu Thingol|king]] there was in days of old;<br>
 +
ere [[Men]] yet walked upon the mould<br>
 +
his power was reared in [[Menegroth|cavern]]’s shad,<br>
 +
his hand was over glen and glade.<br>
 +
His shields were shining as the [[moon]]<br>
 +
his lances keen of steel were hewn,<br>
 +
of silver grey his crown was wrought<br>
 +
the starlight in his banners caught;<br>
 +
and silver thrilled his trumpets long<br>
 +
beneath the [[Menelmacar|stars in challenge]] strong;<br>
 +
enchantment did his real enfold,<br>
 +
where might and glory, wealth untold,<br>
 +
he wielded from his ivory throne<br>
 +
in many-pillared halls of stone.<br>
 +
There beryl, pearl, and opal pale,<br>
 +
and metal wrought like fishes’ mail<br>
 +
buckler and corselet, ade and sword<br>
 +
and gleaming spears were laid in hoard–<br>
 +
all these he had and loved them less<br>
 +
than a maiden once in [[Doriath|Elfinesse]];<br>
 +
for fairer than are born to [[Men]]<br>
 +
a daughter had he, [[Lúthien]]</blockquote>
  
:A [[Thingol|king]] there was in days of old;
+
<blockquote>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;such lissom limbs no more shall run<br>
:ere [[Men]] yet walked upon the mould
+
on the green earth beneath the [[sun]];<br>
:his power was reared in cavern’s shad,
+
so fair a maid no more shall be<br>
:his hand was over glen and glade.
+
from dawn to dusk, from sun to sea.<br>
:His shields were shining as the [[moon]]
+
Her robe was blue as summer skies<br>
:his lances keen of steel were hewn,
+
but gray as evening were here eyes;<br>
:of silver grey his crown was wrought
+
‘twas sewn with golden lilies fair<br>
:the starlight in his banners caught;
+
but dark as shadow was her hair.<br>
:and silver thrilled his trumpets long
+
Her feet were light as bird on wing<br>
:beneath the stars in challenge strong;
+
her laughter lighter than the spring;<br>
:enchantment did his real enfold,
+
the slender willow, the bowing reed<br>
:where might and glory, wealth untold,
+
the fragrance of a flowering mead<br>
:he wielded from his ivory throne
+
the light upon the leaves of trees<br>
:in many-pillared halls of stone.
+
the voice of water, more than these<br>
:There beryl, pearl, and opal pale,
+
her beauty was and blissfulness<br>
:and metal wrought like fishes’ mail
+
her glory and her loveliness;<br>
:buckler and corselet, ade and sword
+
and her the king more dear did prize<br>
:and gleaming spears were laid in hoard–
+
than hand or heart or light of eyes.</blockquote>
:all these he had and loved them less
+
:than a maiden once in [[Doriath|Elfinesse]];
+
:for fairer than are born to [[Men]]
+
:a daughter had he, [[Lúthien]]
+
  
:&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;such lissom limbs no more shall run
+
<blockquote>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;They dwelt amid [[Beleriand]]<br>
:on the green earth beneath the sun;
+
while [[Elves|Elfin]] power yet held the land<br>
:so fair a maid no more shall be
+
in the woven woods of [[Doriath]];<br>
:from dawn to dusk, from sun to sea.
+
few ever thither found the path;<br>
:Her robe was blue as summer skies
+
few ever dared the forest-eaves<br>
:but gray as evening were here eyes;
+
to pass, or stir the listening leaves<br>
:‘twas sewn with golden lilies fair
+
with tongue of hounds a-hunting fleet<br>
:but dark as shadow was her hair.
+
with horse, or horn, or mortal feet.<br>
:Her feet were light as bird on wing
+
To North there lay the [[Dor Daedeloth|Land of Dread]]<br>
:her laughter lighter than the spring;
+
whence only evil pathways led<br>
:the slender willow, the bowing reed
+
o’er hills of shadow bleak and cold<br>
:the fragrance of a flowering mead
+
or [[Taur-nu-Fuin (Dorthonion)|Taur-nu-Fuin]]’s haunted hold<br>
:the light upon the leaves of trees
+
where Deadly [[Great Darkness|Nightshade]] lurked and lay<br>
:the voice of water, more than these
+
and never came or moon or day<br>
:her beauty was and blissfulness
+
to South the wide earth unexplored;<br>
:her glory and her loveliness;
+
to [[West]] the ancient [[Belegaer|Ocean]] roared<br>
:and her the king more dear did prize
+
unsailed and shoreless, wide and wild;<br>
:than hand or heart or light of eyes.
+
to East in [[Blue Mountains|peaks of blue]] were piled<br>
 +
in silence folded, mist-enfurled,<br>
 +
the [[Walls of Night|mountains of the Outer World]],<br>
 +
beyond the tangled woodland shade<br>
 +
thorn and thicket, grove and glade<br>
 +
whose brooding boughs with magic hung<br>
 +
were ancient when the world was young.</blockquote>
  
:&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;They dwelt amid [[Beleriand]]
+
<blockquote>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;There [[Thingol]] in the [[Menegroth|Thousand Caves]]<br>
:while [[Elves|Elfin]] power yet held the land
+
whose portals pale that river laves<br>
:in the woven woods of [[Doriath]];
+
[[Esgalduin]] that fairies call<br>
:few ever thither found the path;
+
in many a tall and torchlit hall<br>
:few ever dared the forest-eaves
+
a dark and hidden king did dwell<br>
:to pass, or stir the listening leaves
+
lord of the forest and the fell;<br>
:with tongue of hounds a-hunting fleet
+
and sharp his [[Aranrúth|sword]] and high his helm<br>
:with horse, or horn, or mortal feet.
+
the king of beech and oak and elm.</blockquote>
:To North there lay the [[Dor Daedeloth|Land of Dread]]
+
:whence only evil pathways led
+
:o’er hills of shadow bleak and cold
+
:or [[Taur-nu-Fuin (Dorthonion)|Taur-nu-Fuin]]’s haunted hold
+
:where Deadly [[Nightshade]] lurked and lay
+
:and never came or moon or day
+
:to South the wide earth unexplored;
+
:to West the ancient [[Belegaer|Ocean]] roared
+
:unsailed and shoreless, wide and wild;
+
:to East in [[Ered Luin|peaks of blue]] were piled
+
:in silence folded, mist-enfurled,
+
:the [[Walls of Night|mountains of the Outer World]],
+
:beyond the tangled woodland shade
+
:thorn and thicket, grove and glade
+
:whose brooding boughs with magic hung
+
:were ancient when the world was young.
+
  
:&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;There [[Thingol]] in the [[Menegroth|Thousand Caves]]
+
<blockquote>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;There Lúthien the lissom maid<br>
:whose portals pale that river laves
+
would dance in dell and grassy glade<br>
:[[Esgalduin]] that fairies call
+
and music merrily, thin and clear,<br>
:in many a tall and torchlit hall
+
went down the ways, more fair than ear<br>
:a dark and hidden king did dwell
+
of [[Gift of Men|mortal Men]] at feast hath heard<br>
:lord of the forest and the fell;
+
and fairer than the song of bird.<br>
:and sharp his sword and high his helm
+
When leaves were long and grass was green<br>
:the king of beech and oak and elm.
+
then [[Dairon]] with fingers lean<br>
 +
as daylight melted into shade<br>
 +
a wandering music sweetly bade<br>
 +
enchanted fluting, warbling wild<br>
 +
for love of Thingol’s elfin child.</blockquote>
  
:&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;There Lúthien the lissom maid
+
<blockquote>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;There bow was bent and shaft was sped<br>
:would dance in dell and grassy glade
+
the fallow deer as phantoms fled<br>
:and music merrily, thin and clear,
+
and horses proud with branded mane<br>
:went down the ways, more fair than ear
+
with shining bit and silver rein<br>
:of mortal Men at feast hath heard
+
went fleeting by on moonlit night<br>
:and fairer than the song of bird.
+
as swallows arrow-swift in flight;<br>
:When leaves were long and grass was green
+
a blowing and a sound of bells<br>
:then [[Dairon]] with fingers lean
+
a hidden hunt in hollow dells.<br>
:as daylight melted into shade
+
There songs were made and things of gold<br>
:a wandering music sweetly bade
+
and silver cups and jewels untold<br>
:enchanted fluting, warbling wild
+
and the endless years of Faëry land<br>
:for love of Thingol’s elfin child.
+
rolled over far [[Beleriand]]<br>
 
+
until a day beneath the sun<br>
:&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;There bow was bent and shaft was sped
+
when many marvels were begun.</blockquote>
:the fallow deer as phantoms fled
+
:and horses proud with branded mane
+
:with shining bit and silver rein
+
:went fleeting by on moonlit night
+
:as swallows arrow-swift in flight;
+
:a blowing and a sound of bells
+
:a hidden hunt in hollow dells.
+
:There songs were made and things of gold
+
:and silver cups and jewels untold
+
:and the endless years of Faëry land
+
:rolled over far [[Beleriand]]
+
:until a day beneath the sun
+
:when many marvels were begun.
+
  
 
== Concerning the Canto ==
 
== Concerning the Canto ==
 +
This canto starts out with one of the more popular paragraphs, concerning Thingol.  The descriptions of jewels is contrasted with the love of his daughter, whose description soon follows.  Then it introduces [[Endor]] and orients the reader.
  
This canto starts out with one of the more popular paragraphs, concerning Thingol.  The descriptions of jewels is contrasted with the love of his daughter, whose description soon follows.  Then it introduces [[Endor]], and orients the reader.
+
<blockquote>''[[Esgalduin]] that fairies call / in many a tall and torchlit hall''</blockquote>
 
+
:''[[Esgalduin]] that fairies call''
+
:''in many a tall and torchlit hall''
+
  
 
Note the reference to fairies, not uncommon in older works.  One thing about the Lay is that it commonly connects Beleriand and Faërie.
 
Note the reference to fairies, not uncommon in older works.  One thing about the Lay is that it commonly connects Beleriand and Faërie.
  
 
Note also that the name of '''Dairon''' is spelt here with an "i", as opposed to '''Daeron''' of later works.
 
Note also that the name of '''Dairon''' is spelt here with an "i", as opposed to '''Daeron''' of later works.

Revision as of 19:27, 8 June 2006

Lay of Leithian cantos
  1. Canto I
  2. Canto II
  3. Canto III
  4. Canto IV
  5. Canto V
  6. Canto VI
  7. Canto VII
  8. Canto VIII
  9. Canto IX
  10. Canto X
  11. Canto XI
  12. Canto XII
  13. Canto XIII
  14. Canto XIV

This first Canto of the Lay of Leithian tells of Elu Thingol, and Lúthien Tinúviel and Doriath. It runs to 98 lines, the shortest canto save the last, unfinished one.

The Canto

A king there was in days of old;
ere Men yet walked upon the mould
his power was reared in cavern’s shad,
his hand was over glen and glade.
His shields were shining as the moon
his lances keen of steel were hewn,
of silver grey his crown was wrought
the starlight in his banners caught;
and silver thrilled his trumpets long
beneath the stars in challenge strong;
enchantment did his real enfold,
where might and glory, wealth untold,
he wielded from his ivory throne
in many-pillared halls of stone.
There beryl, pearl, and opal pale,
and metal wrought like fishes’ mail
buckler and corselet, ade and sword
and gleaming spears were laid in hoard–
all these he had and loved them less
than a maiden once in Elfinesse;
for fairer than are born to Men
a daughter had he, Lúthien
   such lissom limbs no more shall run
on the green earth beneath the sun;
so fair a maid no more shall be
from dawn to dusk, from sun to sea.
Her robe was blue as summer skies
but gray as evening were here eyes;
‘twas sewn with golden lilies fair
but dark as shadow was her hair.
Her feet were light as bird on wing
her laughter lighter than the spring;
the slender willow, the bowing reed
the fragrance of a flowering mead
the light upon the leaves of trees
the voice of water, more than these
her beauty was and blissfulness
her glory and her loveliness;
and her the king more dear did prize
than hand or heart or light of eyes.
   They dwelt amid Beleriand
while Elfin power yet held the land
in the woven woods of Doriath;
few ever thither found the path;
few ever dared the forest-eaves
to pass, or stir the listening leaves
with tongue of hounds a-hunting fleet
with horse, or horn, or mortal feet.
To North there lay the Land of Dread
whence only evil pathways led
o’er hills of shadow bleak and cold
or Taur-nu-Fuin’s haunted hold
where Deadly Nightshade lurked and lay
and never came or moon or day
to South the wide earth unexplored;
to West the ancient Ocean roared
unsailed and shoreless, wide and wild;
to East in peaks of blue were piled
in silence folded, mist-enfurled,
the mountains of the Outer World,
beyond the tangled woodland shade
thorn and thicket, grove and glade
whose brooding boughs with magic hung
were ancient when the world was young.
   There Thingol in the Thousand Caves
whose portals pale that river laves
Esgalduin that fairies call
in many a tall and torchlit hall
a dark and hidden king did dwell
lord of the forest and the fell;
and sharp his sword and high his helm
the king of beech and oak and elm.
   There Lúthien the lissom maid
would dance in dell and grassy glade
and music merrily, thin and clear,
went down the ways, more fair than ear
of mortal Men at feast hath heard
and fairer than the song of bird.
When leaves were long and grass was green
then Dairon with fingers lean
as daylight melted into shade
a wandering music sweetly bade
enchanted fluting, warbling wild
for love of Thingol’s elfin child.
   There bow was bent and shaft was sped
the fallow deer as phantoms fled
and horses proud with branded mane
with shining bit and silver rein
went fleeting by on moonlit night
as swallows arrow-swift in flight;
a blowing and a sound of bells
a hidden hunt in hollow dells.
There songs were made and things of gold
and silver cups and jewels untold
and the endless years of Faëry land
rolled over far Beleriand
until a day beneath the sun
when many marvels were begun.

Concerning the Canto

This canto starts out with one of the more popular paragraphs, concerning Thingol. The descriptions of jewels is contrasted with the love of his daughter, whose description soon follows. Then it introduces Endor and orients the reader.

Esgalduin that fairies call / in many a tall and torchlit hall

Note the reference to fairies, not uncommon in older works. One thing about the Lay is that it commonly connects Beleriand and Faërie.

Note also that the name of Dairon is spelt here with an "i", as opposed to Daeron of later works.