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Talk:King of Rohan

Discussion page of King of Rohan
Latest comment: 28 February 2022 by LorenzoCB
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Should this be moved to Kings of the Mark? When I searched an e-book of The Lord of the Rings, I noticed that the terms "King of the Mark" and "Kings of the Mark" are used more frequently than "King of Rohan" and "Kings of Rohan". "Kings of the Mark" is even the title above the list of kings in Appendix A II. --Akhorahil 18:20, 23 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

At the very least I think it should be mentioned in the beginning of the article since both terms are used. For the primary article name, I think it would be worth us going over the text and looking at who uses what term: for example, do the Rohirrim say "Mark" more than outsiders? --Oromë 19:12, 23 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
From an outside-universe perspective, "Rohan" is, anecdotally, a much more common descriptor than "Mark." I would suggest leaving it as-is. --Mord 19:36, 23 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Could you supply passages and references on which your conclusions are based? Tolkien Gateway is in-universe and should use in-universe titles. --Akhorahil 21:09, 23 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
TG is not "in-universe," it is a reference for people on planet Earth. "Recognisability" is the first point of TG:NAMING. In the pages of LOTR itself "Rohan" appears 296 times, "the Mark" 109 times, "King of Rohan" 9 times, and "King of the Mark" 13 times (plus 3 more in the index). The index entry reads "King of the Mark (Rohan)".
I can't quantify this, but also consider that in media (looking especially at the films) "the place the horse guys are from" is known as "Rohan." Further, though the algorithm plays its games, when I Google "kings of the mark" (sans quotes) the first hit is the Fandom wiki article King of Rohan, and then I get stuff about unrelated fantasy series, while Googling "kings of Rohan" (sans quotes) I immediately and exclusively get relevant hits.
It's not as clear-cut as "Wizards" versus "Heren Istarion," certainly, but I think this falls under the same rubric. "Rohan" is the popular name of the kingdom, and as such I feel that articles relating to Rohan should have names that reflect this. --Mord 05:33, 24 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Surely this simply necessitates a new redirect; going from Kings of the Mark to Kings of Rohan. I do not see the need to move to a less used name, (to quote Mith "Article names are chosen for the convenience of the reader") and in this case it seems quite clear that Rohan should remain. JR Snow 14:12, 24 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The page is about the official title of the kings of a realm that is used in-universe by the people of that realm. It is not about the out-of-realm title or an out-of-universe term "Kings of Rohan". It is also not about the House of Éorl, which includes other descendants than the kings of the realm.
A search of an e-book version of the 50th anniversary edition of The Lord of the Rings shows that the term "Kings of Rohan" ist not used at all in The Lord of the Rings. The term "kings of Rohan" is only used in the Index in section III. Persons, Places, and Things in the entry Barrows in the phrase "; of the kings of Rohan see Barrowfield;".
On the contrary the term "Kings of the Mark" is used in Appendix A Annals of the Kings and Rulers II The House of Eorl after the quotation mark ' it is mentioned 'Of the Kings of the Mark between Eorl and Théoden [...]. In addition it is mentioned that Eorl and his people renamed Calenardhon to the Mark of the Riders and that in Gondor their land was called Rohan and that Eorl became the first "King of the Mark". It also has a section with the title "THE KINGS OF THE MARK" with a list of all the Kings of the Mark. In Appendix B The Tale of Years The Third Age the entry for the year 2759 mentions that "Fréalaf [...] begins the second line of the Kings of the Mark". So the term "Kings of the Mark" is used three times and is used in the title for the list of kings in an official chronology about those kings. The Note on the Shire Records in the Prologue mentions that there were many works dealing with the history of Rohan in Brandyhall, some composed or begun by Meriadoc himself and that The Tale of Years was put together with the assistance of material collected by Meriadoc. Since Merry was a friend of Éomer, he was familiar with the official title of the king of Rohan "King of the Mark".
The term "King of the Mark" is used in the chapter "The King of the Golden Hall" Gandalf says that "Théoden son of Thengel, King of the Mark of Rohan" dwells in Meduseld. In the chapter "The Muster of Rohan" the men of Rohan who guard the fords of the Snowbourn say "The King of the Mark returns!" when they see their king Théoden and the narrator writes that "the King of the Mark came back". Théoden says to an errand rifer from Gondor that he should say to Denethor that "the King of the Mark himself will come down to the land of Gondor" and the narrator writes that "the King of the Mark made ready to lead". In the chapter "The Battle of the Pelennor Fields" the narrator writes that "Théoden, the King of the Mark had reached the road". Before he dies Théoden says to Éomer "Hail, King of the Mark!". The narrator writes that "though no man should be left in the West to remember the last King of the Mark". In the chapter "The Houses of Healing" the narrator writes that "before the dais lay Thédoen, King of the Mark upon a bed of state". In the chapter "Many Partings" the narrator writes that "Never had any king of the Mark such company upon the road as went with Théoden" and Éowyn says "Hail Éomer, King of the Mark!". As already said, in Appendix A Annals of the Kings and Rulers II The House of Eorl it is mentioned that that became the first "King of the Mark". It is also written that the mearas would carry no one, but the King of the Mark or his sons. So "King of the Mark" is used twelve times and "king of the Mark" is used once. It is noteworthy that people from Rohan call their king the "King of the Mark" and do not call him the "King of Rohan".
In the chapter "The White Rider" Gandalf talks that "Théoden, King of Rohan" has ever looked on a better horse than Shadowfax. In the chapter The Road to Isengard Pippin says after meeting Théoden for the first time "So that is the King of Rohan!". In the chapter "The Voice of Saruman" Saruman asks Gimli to allow him to first speak with the King of Rohan. In the chapter "Minas Tirith" men of Gondor said when they saw Shadowfax "Surely that is one of the great steeds of the King of Rohan?". In the chapter "The Muster of Rohan" the narrator writes that "the King of Rohan came down out of the hills". In the chapter "The Steward and the King" the narrator writes "dead lay the King of Rohan in their citadel". In Appendix B The Tale of Years The Third Age the entry for the year 2948 mentions "Théoden son of Fengel, King of Rohan, born" and the entry for the year 2980 mentions "Théoden becomes King of Rohan". In Appendix F II On Translation it is mentioned which word the "King of Rohan" used for Hobbits. So "King of Rohan" is used nine times. It is noteworthy that persons who are not originally from Rohan, such as Gandalf, Pippin, Saruman or men of Gondor talk about the king of Rohan as the "King of Rohan". This is no surprise, because people from outside of Rohan call the land Rohan. The people of Rohan call their land the Mark.
The article should have "Kings of the Mark" as its title, because "King of the Mark" is the official title used by the people of Rohan for their king and because it is used in the official list of the kings of Rohan in Appendix A II. In addition Kings of the Mark is used in The Lord of the Rings and "Kings of Rohan" is not used in The Lord of the Rings. Finally "King of the Mark" is used more often in The Lord of the Rings than "King of Rohan" and "King of Rohan" is used by people who are not officially from Rohan. The people of Rohan do not call their country Rohan, they call it the Mark, so their king is not the king of Rohan, but the King of the Mark. An analysis of the book Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-earth produces the same results and conclusions. The term "Kings of Rohan" is not used by J.R.R. Tolkien Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-earth. Is is only used casually by his son, Christopher Tolkien in one of the notes on the flowers that bloomed on the burial mounds of the Kings of Rohan. In section (iii) Cirion and Eorl of the chapter Cirion and Eorl and the friendship of Gondor and Rohan it is mentioned that the Wood of Anwar became by custom part of the royal domain of the "Kings of the Mark" and that Eorl took the title "King of the Mark of the Riders". There it is also explained that the Sindarin names Rohan for the Mark and Rohirrim for the people was first used by Hallas, the son and successor of Cirion, the Steward of Gondor, but were often used not only in Gondor, but also by the Éothéod. However we always see the Rohirrim to address their king as the King of the Mark and never as the King of Rohan. The term "Kings of Rohan" is also not used in The Peoples of Middle-earth (which contains the drafts of what would later become the appdendices of The Lord of the Rings). In the chapter IX. The Making of Appendix A in section III. The House of Eorl in text III it is said that "Eorl became the first King of the Mark". --Akhorahil 14:56, 28 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Readers can easily find the page if a page "Kings of Rohan", a page "King of Rohan" and a page "King of the Mark" redirect to the page "Kings of the Mark". My opinion is supported by references and facts from the context. --Akhorahil 16:20, 25 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
According to the Terminology section of the Tolkien Gateway: Manual of Style adaption derived terms to describe the original versions of characters, concepts, etc. should be avoided. In my opinion this implies that the original name of the title of kings should be used rather than "Kings of Gondor" which is not used in The Lord of the Rings at all and which is mainly informally used by fans. Recognisabilty is just one out of many criteria for the naming of a page according to Tolkien Gateway: Naming policy. It is no problem to find a page if redirect pages with other likely search terms are used. Canonicity is another criterion and in my opinion it does not only apply to the canonical names of characters, but also to the canonical names of titles of persons with a function. --Akhorahil 16:44, 25 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I appreciate your detailed response Akhorahil, you have clearly put a lot of time and thought into this but I do think it is a very straight forward issue; what is the most commonly used (by readers) and recognisable title? I do not believe "King of Rohan" falls under the adaption derived terms you mentioned but I do agree that it is the less canonical term. However we do not always use the most canonical term for titles, for example King of Númenor is not listed as the title they would have used themselves "King of the Anadunians".
Regardless of canonicty I do believe that the title should remain what is the most recognisable, provided it is not non-canon or overly obscure. JR Snow 18:12, 25 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Recognisability is only one of several criteria. I am loath to have a title for a page for kings, which is not the official title that the people of that country and the kings used for themselves and which is not used at all in The Lord of the Rings ("Kings of Rohan"). The page can be easily found if the Kings of Rohan page and a King of Rohan page redirect to the Kings of the Mark page and if it is explained on the Kings of the Mark page that this was the official title in the country and that people from outside the country referred to the Kings of the Mark as the Kings of Rohan, because they referred to the country as Rohan. --Akhorahil 14:56, 28 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I am not completely in disagreement with you Akhorahil and I understand your logic. I would be content with leaving it as it is, but perhaps some one else can weigh in before any final decision is made and if the redirects I recently made are switched I would take no offence. JR Snow 15:07, 28 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree with everything JR Snow said above. Akhorahil, your reasons are good, but we have the Manual of Style for this kind of matters and we cannot make exceptions. This is not like the Horn of Gondor, which is a name made up by the movies for the Great Horn. However, this discussion could be (briefly) reflected in the article, and it would be pertinent having "Kings of the Mark" in the first line. --LorenzoCB 21:56, 28 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]