Elwing was not a half-elf
In texts where Tolkien tries to think more profoundly about the half-elven (see below), he doesn’t put Elwing and her brothers as half-elven:
Earendil was thus the second of the Pereldar (Half-elven),(50) the elder being Dior, son of Beren and Luthien Tinuviel daughter of King Elu Thingol. (...) By the marriage of Earendil to Elwing daughter of Dior son of Beren the lines of the Pereldar (Peredil) were united. (HoME 12, "The Shibboleth of Feanor")
Pay attention to the fact that Eluréd e Elurín are older than Eärendil, but Tolkien ignores them in the list. Possibly a "half-elf", before the judging of the valar, was only the son/daughter of a union between elf and human, the grandsons and so on weren't half-elven.
Anyway, I couldn't find any canon source in which Tolkien puts Elwing as a half-elf. Sorry my bad english Haran 20:53, 15 August 2014 (UTC)
- I think the confusion here is "Half-elven" as a title (which applied just to Elrond, Elros and Eärendil) and "half-elven" as a genetic fact (which did also apply to Elwing et al.) The Silmarillion is clear that both Eärendil and Elwing (and their sons) were given free choice to decide under which kindred they be judged (this is the chapter "Of the Voyage of Eärendil and the War of Wrath"). --Mith (Talk/Contribs/Edits) 14:28, 16 August 2014 (UTC)
- But I think "half-elven" as a genetic fact (i.e., before the choice of Eärendil e Elwing) was not applied to Elwing, Eluréd and Elurín, as we see in the text from Shibboleth. And "half-elven" as a title is applied to Elrond, Elros and the sons of Elrond only. Haran 17:18, 16 August 2014 (UTC)
There is no canon source about Elwing being a half-elf, as I tried to show in 2014. Am I wrong? If I'm not, the encyclopedia should remain neutral about this issue. Haran 02:57, 8 May 2018 (UTC)
Other texts that corroborate what I said:
- Dior their son, it is said, spoke both tongues: his father's, and his mother's, the Sindarin of Doriath. For he said: 'I am the first of the Peredil (Half-elven),. but I am also the heir of King Elwe, the Eluchil.' (The problem of ros.)
And in The Silmarillion:
- Bright Eärendil was then lord of the people that dwelt nigh to Sirion's mouths; and he took to wife Elwing the fair, and she bore to him Elrond and Elros, who are called the Half-elven.
- Half-elven: Translation of Sindarin Peredhel, plural Peredhil, applied to Elrond and Elros, 304, 315, 322, 354, 357; and to Eärendil, 298
We see that Dior says "I am the first of the Peredil", as if it was a self-evident, biological fact. Elrond and Elros, in their turn, are only "called" the half-elven. In the text of the Shibboleth, Eärendil is the second Pereldar, in the first (biological) sense. Therefore, Elured and Elurín (which are older than Eärendil) are not half-elven. What is a little awkward, but not so much - the son of Mithrellas (if her legend is true) probably was a half-elf in that biological sense, but the grandsons and so on weren’t. Therefore, Elwing was not a biological half-elf, and, it seems to me, she wasn't called half-elf either. Haran 20:59, 11 May 2018 (UTC)
- This is not what the Other infobox is for. Do not change it again. --Ederchil (Talk/Contribs/Edits) 07:11, 12 May 2018 (UTC)
- Why not? We don't have a perfect classification to Elwing's condition in terms of elf/man/half-elf. "Other" is a way to avoid definite it (after all the "other" label is a neutral label). Anyway, if your problem with my editions is only this point, you shouldn’t have reverted all my edits (in the Elwing article but also in other ones, like Elrond, Elros, etc), where I tried to avoid categorical affirmations that Elwing was a half-elf.... Haran 19:40, 14 May 2018 (UTC)
- No, of course. Being a so called "half-elf" was not a necessary condition to "choose to between the two kindreds". Perhaps "having mortal blood" was, but wathever, what I affirm is that Elwing was not (as far as we know for sure) considered a "half-elf", in the both senses the word appears in the legendarium. Haran 19:40, 14 May 2018 (UTC)
Protection of this article
We are not having an edit war over this, so this article is now protected until it is resolved considering the edit has been reverted four times by two different administrators. As Ederchil pointed out, if Elwing is not a half-elf then the elf infobox should be used instead. Regardless, the edit summary that was posted "Write an objection", is not helpful when objections have been raised. --Mith (Talk/Contribs/Edits) 20:52, 21 July 2018 (UTC)
- "Objections have been raised?" Where? There was no justification about Elwing being a half-elf. Something like "I think Elwing was a half-elf for such and such reasons". You only affirmed, very quickly, as if it was an obvious fact, I posted my view (that, I believe, is strongly based in the Tolkien writings) disagreeing of that, and there was no response.
- "As Ederchil pointed out, if Elwing is not a half-elf then the elf infobox should be used instead". Where did he point out this? He barely talked here (and was asked for), only in his personal talk page, one month and a half after his editions... In his personal talk page, Ederchil only evocated very subjective arguments, like percentage of elf-blood. Do you really want to bring these arguments publicly here? Or worse, do you really want to make an "administrator’s decision” basead on this? This is far from canonical, there are not only these two options, and Elwing was a daughter of a mortal, it's strange (at least) put her simply as an elf...
- And, that is, it seems to me, only a new way to disagree with my editions, which you both insisted in reverting barely talking about it… Particularly because putting Elwing as a elf is a new point of yours, indeed, you put Eluréd in the elf label, Elwing in the half-elf label, and Elurín in the elf label but also in the Category:Half-Elves…. I mean, you both don’t seem to know what are you standing for…
- These were very bad administrator performances... Why not leave the normal users work in the encyclopedia, if an intervention would create the necessity of a dialogue that you both obviously don't want to engage? That was a normal edition and debate scenario, your part as administrators should not play a role here... These are only two users reverting a third user without an apparent basis….. Haran 19:05, 23 July 2018 (UTC)
- To respond to your points in order:
- Objections - yes, I specifically said "I think the confusion here is "Half-elven" as a title (which applied just to Elrond, Elros and Eärendil) and "half-elven" as a genetic fact (which did also apply to Elwing et al.) The Silmarillion is clear that both Eärendil and Elwing (and their sons) were given free choice to decide under which kindred they be judged" I stand by this statement, and supposedly you do too with you comment that it would be strange to list Elwing as an elf being the daughter of a mortal.
- Elf infobox - Ederchil made it clear that the Other infobox was not for the purposes you state. Your argument seems to be "Elwing was not an half-elf, she was given the choice between men and elves but that's because she was some other thing but I don't know what that is." By your own admission, putting her simply as an elf would be strange, which was why we included her as a half-elf as someone who had the choice between men and elves.
- Reversions - unfortunately, you are simply disorderly here. When someone disagrees you don't just pursue the course regardless - even if you believe yourself to be right - and instead you chose to engage in an edit war. I have ended that scenario and the article will be unlocked when a resolution is reached. You can't just decided "I'm right and they're wrong and because I don't agree with their view I will ignore it."
- To respond to your points in order:
- You affirmed that Elwing was a "genetic half-elf", but didn't justify it. You said that they were given the free choice to decide under which kindred they would be judged. Ok, like I said, I don’t disagree with that... But how this is liked to your earlier affirmation? It isn’t. After all, there is not a necessary condition like "to be given the free choice to decide your own kindred, you must be half-elf"… You seem to assume it is, but didn't justify it. In fact, what the books seems to indicate is that the mere mortal blood is sufficient to the person be mortal, and the valar let Eärendil's family choice their own destiny as a reward by their deeds. We could discuss it, but I don’t see the point, after all I don’t see a strong link between the free choice given to the Eärendil and his family and their half-elf label. I mean, of course the heritage of both men and elves played a role, but it doesn't matter if they are half-elves, "half-half-elves", or they have a "spiritual elf heritage” like Tuor, or whatever.
- "Ederchil made it clear that the Other infobox was not for the purposes you state". He was very monosyllabic. I was not sure what purpose he believed I had, and what purpose the box was meant for. To me, the use was very appropriate, as a way to avoid put Elwing in terms of elf and half-elf. I asked him more elaboration of his warning, and he didn't answer.
- "Your argument seems to be "Elwing was not an half-elf, she was given the choice between men and elves but that's because she was some other thing but I don't know what that is." This was a very marginal point of the discussion. My argument is that Elwing was not a half-elf, because she and her brothers were neither called half-elf in the legendarium nor listed as such (and they should have been listed in the HoME text I quoted). The fact they were given the free choice was (I interpret) a reward by their deeds. Tuor was also indicated to have become an elf, and didn't have immortal blood. Lúthien also have become a mortal, and didn’t have mortal blood... Neither (therefore) they were half-elves…. Moreover, half-elves outside Eärendil's house were not given any choice.
- “(…) You can't just decided "I'm right and they're wrong and because I don't agree with their view I will ignore it." You did it, not I. See all the discussion again. In 2014, I wrote a somewhat extensive justification of my opinion. You disagreed and barely justify it, implicitly assuming the justification you should elaborate. I replied your text, elaborating the concepts yourself put in discussion (genetic fact versus title), and showing that both concepts didn’t apply to Elwing. If you have maintained your opinion, you should have replied, don’t you agree? There was an interval of four years (!!!) to elaborate the position of Elwing was a half-elf. After four years, I asked “Am I wrong?”, showing to believe no one thought I was wrong. And I wrote more justifications. If you have maintained your opinion, this was a new great opportunity to speak out. But there was no answer again. Only then I decided to edit the article, and the result was reversions, Edheril saying “don’t do it again” barely explaining his point (!!), and a question of yours that didn't seem to indicate great disagreement to the central point of the editions... Haran 21:08, 23 July 2018 (UTC)
- OK. Just to make it clear my position. I'm not going to engage with the above comments because you're more interested in engaging in a conversation that is about individual administrator actions than the substance of the debate. I shall respond to the substance of the debate below. --Mith (Talk/Contribs/Edits) 16:55, 24 July 2018 (UTC)
Source on Elwing being half-elven
- J.R.R. Tolkien: "Eärendil is Túor's son & father of Elros (First King of Númenor) and Elrond, their mother being Elwing daughter of Dior, son of Beren and Lúthien: so the problem of the Half-elven becomes united in one line. The view is that the Half-elven have a power of (irrevocable) choice, which may be delayed but not permanently, which kin's fate they will share." - Letter 153 (emphasis my own)
- J.R.R. Tolkien: "But Elwing was saved and fled with the Silmaril to the havens of the surviving Eldar at the Mouths of Sirion. There she later wedded Eärendil, and so joined the two Half-elven lines." - The Peoples of Middle-earth, p. 369 (emphasis my own)
- J.R.R. Tolkien: "By the marriage of Dior son of Beren the lines of Pereldar (Pereðil) were united." - The Peoples of Middle-earth, p. 369 (emphasis my own)
- Elwing belonged to Dior's line, this is sufficient to understand these three texts. In fact, the text I mentioned earlier already admitted this fact:
- Earendil was thus the second of the Pereldar (Half-elven),(50) the elder being Dior, son of Beren and Luthien Tinuviel daughter of King Elu Thingol. (...) By the marriage of Earendil to Elwing daughter of Dior son of Beren the lines of the Pereldar (Peredil) were united. (HoME 12, "The Shibboleth of Feanor")
- The text doesn't consider Elwing, Elured and Elurin as half-elves: pay attention to the fact that Eluréd e Elurín are older than Eärendil, but Tolkien ignores them in the list. And Elwing was the same age than Eärendil. The lines of the Pereldar are the lines of Eärendil and Dior, and such lines were united. Haran 21:08, 23 July 2018 (UTC)
- And, reinforcing the whole objective in discussing it here: I believe Tolkien clearly didn't consider Elwing a half-elf, but what I want since the beginning is not that you agree with me, but that the the encyclopedia be maintained neutral about this issue. Haran 21:24, 23 July 2018 (UTC)
- I don't think if there is a language barrier here, but it is baffling to me that when Tolkien says that the half-elf lines were united in one line that Elwing was not of that line as a half-elven herself. Furthermore, Tolkien explicitly states that the half-elven have the power of choice, which Elwing had. We surely can't argue against that Elwing was half-elven as a genetic fact in view of the fact that the "lines were united". Elwing is carrying the line of Dior, who has passed away (similarly Eluréd and Elurín had passed away and didn't make it beyond infancy). Is your argument that Elwing is kind of "carrying half-elven genetics" without being half-elven herself?
- Again, I repeat, the title of "Peredil" was not given to Elwing; I don't think Elwing being given the epithet "Half-elven" is up for debate. It seems as if Tolkien has almost treated it as a male-only inheritable epithet (note that Arwen was never "Arwen Peredhil" but she clearly was half-elven).
- Tolkien's use of "Peredhil" is not exactly consistent. In Appendix A Tolkien appears to suggest this only applies to Elrond and Elros: "The sons of Eärendil were Elros and Elrond, the Peredhil or Half-elven." So the usage of the term "Peredhil" or "Half-elven" when applied to individuals is not a reliable guide here.
- From my perspective, I need to hear from you how you would classify Elwing, and your sources for justifying that. --Mith (Talk/Contribs/Edits) 17:09, 24 July 2018 (UTC)
- The line of reasoning is:
- (1) in The Shibboleth, Dior is counted as the first half-elf, Eärendil as the second.
- (2) Eluréd and Elurín are older than Eärendil, so, if they were half-elves, they should be listed before Eärendil.
- (3) Eluréd and Elurín aren't half-elves.
- (4) Elwing, their sister, cannot be a half-elf either.
- (5) In all other texts, she is not called half-elf. In the Silmarillion, it is explicitly said that "half-elven" is a "translation of Sindarin Peredhel, plural Peredhil, applied to Elrond and Elros, 304, 315, 322, 354, 357 and to Eärendil, 298".
- About the "the lines of the Pereldar"...
- "Elwë Singollo came never again across the sea to Valinor so long as he lived, and Melian returned not thither while their realm together lasted; but of her there came among both Elves and Men a strain of the Ainur who were with Ilúvatar before Eä." (The Silmarillion)
- "But since Melian, wife of Thingol and mother of Lúthien came of the people of the Valar a strain of the 'race divine' was also possessed by them [the half-elven]." (Beyond Bree June 1985, p. 7)
- "The sons of Eärendil were Elros and Elrond, the Peredhil or Half-elven. In them alone the line of the heroic chieftains of the Edain in the First Age was preserved; and after the fall of Gil-galad12 the lineage of the High-elven Kings was also in Middle-earth only represented by their descendants." (The Return of the King)
- The half-elves preserves a strain of the ainur, and of course they aren't ainur. Elros and Elrong preserves "the line" of the chieftains of the Edain, and of course they aren't chieftains of the Edain. Therefore, Elwing could preserve the line of the Pereldar (or Half-Elves) without being a Peredhel (Half-Elf) herself.
- I don't see any reason to distinguish between the terms Pereldar and Half-Elves. Tolkien calls Arwen a half-elf, if she is not called Peredhel in the texts, it's only an incidental matter. In the Shibboleth, the terms are equivalent. There is also no reason to believe that any of the terms are a male-only title... Finally, the use of the term "half-elf / Peredhel" is variable or multifaceted, not inconsistent: biological vs. cultural, genetic fact vs. title, that we all have agreed in the beginning of the discussion. But none of these meanings are applied to Elwing and her brothers.
- A son of a half-elf with a man/woman would be a man with an elvish strain (Galador's sons, Vardamir). But a son of a half-elf with an elf would be (in normal circumstances) a peculiar humanoid, a "mortal long-lived elvish humanoid". There is no term to describe them in the legendarium, because not one of them lived in normal circumstances (Eluréd and Elurín died in childhood and Elwing became immortal). Yet this does not mean we should simply call them elves or half-elves. Because of that, a blank label would be better. Besides that, this is an encyclopedical discussion, not a discussion in a forum environment. The blank label is also suitable if this is a polemical or dubious subject - I am not asking everyone agrees if me in all the matter, but only grant the "benefit of the doubt" about the issue. Haran 16:52, 15 March 2020 (UTC)
- I'm new in the discussion, and I get some of your points, but there is no way a character can be tagged as a "mortal long-lived elvish humanoid". That's basically the same definition for half-elf! Probably, Elwing was not called a half-elf because she lived and choosed to die as an elf, while it was necessary to point out that Arwen was a half-elf because the lived as an elf but died as a mortal woman. We need to tag Elwing, but you insist that she has half-elven genetics, she acts like a half-elf, she smells like a half-elf, but she is not a half-elf? We need to tag the characters in a simple way, so diffencing the title and the "race" is pertinent. Also, why are you so obssesed with this topic? There are so many other things to improve in the wiki, and now we can't even edit the article due to never ending discussions. I do think that this weird topic could be developed (in a simple way, please) in the Half-elven article, as it also involves other characters. Sorry if I sound harsh, I don't pretend it at all, this is even funny for me, and I don't pretend to have the last word.--LorenzoCB 21:04, 15 March 2020 (UTC)
- (1) I didn't propose to tag her "mortal long-lived elvish humanoid". I proposed a blank infobox, like Falathar, and no tag "half-elf" or "elf"..
- (2) Neither I (or Tolkien) agree that "mortal long-lived elvish humanoid" is basically the definition of half-elf, this is fully developed in the texts above, specially when Tolkien explicitly counts the half-elves...
- (3) "Human with elvish strain" (elvish blood < 50%, like Galador's son) is different than "mortal elvish humanoid" (elvish blood > 50%, like Elwing). Both expressions appear in my text and they are not interchangeable (I hoped this was clear in the context). Half-elves (elvish blood = 50%) are neither "human with elvish strain" nor "mortal elvish humanoid" (again, in the text "elvish humanoid" is different than elvish strain!). Ok, the language was not the best one, but this is a minor issue, you could exchange "elvish humanoid" by "humanoid with great percentage (>>50%) of elvish blood". It would be an "elf" with a small percentage of human blood, therefore a mortal "elf", hence the peculiarity.
- If Elwing had a son with an elf, their son would be ~88% elvish, and yet mortal. If this son had a son with another elf, this new son (Elwing's grandson) would be ~94% elvish, and (again) mortal. Therefore, he would be "mortal long-lived elvish humanoid", yet would not be a (biological) "half-elf". Indeed, Tolkien didn't count Elured and Elurin (75% elvish) as half-elves.
- (4) I agree that title and race are a pertinent distinction, but affirm that Elwing was not a racial (or biological) half-elf, neither had the title "half-elf" or were "called" half-elf, like Elrond, Elros and Elrond's sons.
- (5) I'm not obsessed (wtf?), I stayed two years without thinking about the issue, and only returned because I have found new texts with regard to the subject, and due to the coronavirus, which gave me more free time to revisit old topics on forum boards. This issue was discussed in one of them. Haran 22:26, 15 March 2020 (UTC)
- I totally call it an obsession: this discussion goes back to six years ago, please, ná lú pusto.
My only aportation to the matter is a more naïve idea: she is more racial half-elf than any body else in the Legendarium: in genetics, a way to know if an individual belongs to a particular species is if it can have fertile offspring. Thus, Elwing, being the daughter of a half-elf, she breeds with another half-elf, having the two Half-Elves by excellence. Thus, she totally is a half-elf, more clear than water.
I repeat, it would be nice to have this discussion in a section of the Half-elven article, written with clarity and references. Just please, accept the last word of the admins and leave Elwing's page alone, so others can edit it. --LorenzoCB 14:21, 17 March 2020 (UTC)
- I totally call it an obsession: this discussion goes back to six years ago, please, ná lú pusto.
- She could breed with a total human or with a total elf, perhaps even with a hobbit, and in any case she would have fertile offspring. The specie of men and elves is only one (we could call it 'eruhín' or 'homo sapiens'), the discussion in terms of elf/man/half-elf is about "race" or subspecie, so the point of the fertile offspring is not relevant in the matter... And it is debatable if Elros and Elrond are half-elves "by excellence", I would classify their 'half-elvishness' more a cultural or conventional alias, nickname, title. "(...) Elrond and Elros, who are called the Half-elven." (see the first section of the talk page). "Half-Elves by excellence" are the sons of full elves and full humans: Dior, Galador, Eärendil.
- If the criteria of time ("six years of discussion") is relevant to determine an obsession, then I am obsessed with two or three dozen things and could prove it. But this issue, and in special your opinion about the matter, is not relevant either.
- The admins have no interest in unblocking the page, the discussion was dead for two years and yet they didn't unblock it. And if they had unblocked it, I would not edit necessarily, just as I didn't edit Elured and Elurín's articles, which are unblocked... Curiously, Galador (a half-elf by excellence) has no tag or infobox that affirms he is a half-elven, but Elwing, in her turn, not only has them but also her page is blocked so no one takes them out. And more: until last December, unlike Elwing, Eluréd and Elurín were counted as "elves", you personally changed the infobox without any disturbance. I mean, for two years, establish a convention about the matter was never of interest of anyone.....
- At the moment, I have no interest in writing a text on the Half-elf page... I do not think this will be fruitful, given what happened on this talk page... And the last word of an admin was "I need to hear from you how you would classify Elwing, and your sources for justifying that", so I have answered him... If it was two days or two years laters, again, it's not relevant. Haran 14:54, 18 March 2020 (UTC)
Changing the infobox image
- I agree with you here. Generic featureless portraits that for some esoteric reason the author decided to title as "Elwing" without any context, don't work for me. Sage 09:57, 13 August 2020 (UTC)
- Disagree. I think this is a beautiful image and if the new criteria is "depicts her story better" then we will struggle with an awful lot of characters. --Mith (Talk/Contribs/Edits) 19:38, 13 August 2020 (UTC)
- Agree. Mith is right: "depicting the story" is not a good criteria, but we should give visibility to character depictions that the reader can recognice and not plain portraits without a single attribute. Although maybe a less dramatic depiction would be better, like: File:Elena Kukanova - The Seagull.jpg or File:Svirina Vera - Elwing with Nauglamir.jpg. --LorenzoCB 12:17, 18 August 2020 (UTC)