The Palantír (scene)

From Tolkien Gateway
The name Palantír refers to more than one character, item or concept. For a list of other meanings, see Palantir (disambiguation).

The Palantír
Scene from
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
The Lord of the Rings - The Return of the King - Pippin looks into the Palantír.png
Scene number6 (theatrical)
8 (extended)
Event Pippin looks into the palantír
Gandalf and Pippin ride to Minas Tirith
Characters Pippin, Gandalf, Merry, Aragorn, Legolas, Théoden, Sauron
Éowyn's Dream
Arwen's Vision

The Palantír is the sixth scene of The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King and the eighth scene of The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (extended edition). It was extended in the latter edition.

Synopsis[edit | edit source]

Aragorn steps outside of the Golden Hall at night. Legolas is standing, looking at the stars, and tells Aragorn that he can feel something stirring in the East.

Inside, Pippin, unable to sleep, gets up and makes his way towards where Gandalf is sleeping. Merry asks him what he is doing, and Pippin tells him he wants to look into the palantír one more time. Carefully, he takes it from Gandalf's grasp, unwraps it, and looks into it. Slowly, the Eye of Sauron fills the palantír. Pippin struggles and screams, and Merry shouts for Gandalf to help. The wizard wakes as Aragorn and Legolas run inside. Aragorn takes the palantír from Pippin temporarily but is unable to hold it for long. As it rolls across the floor, Gandalf covers it with a cloth.

Fool of a Took!
Gandalf to Pippin

Gandalf ensures Pippin is alive before asking him what he saw. Pippin told Sauron nothing about Frodo's quest and saw a White Tree burning. Gandalf understands that Pippin saw a glimpse of Sauron's plan: Minas Tirith, home of the White Tree, will be first to be struck. The wizard tells Théoden to be ready to ride for Gondor once the beacons are lit, and somewhat cryptically tells Aragorn he must come to Minas Tirith by "another road. Follow the river, look to the black ships." Gandalf decides to go to Minas Tirith, and that Pippin must go with him.

As Gandalf readies Shadowfax, Merry tries to explain to Pippin that, since he looked into the palantír, Sauron will be looking for him. Merry gives him the last of the Longbottom Leaf, and Pippin asks him for reassurance that they will see each other again. Merry shares an uncertain glance with Gandalf before saying he does not know what will happen.

Merry and Aragorn watch Gandalf and Pippin depart on Shadowfax. Aragorn comforts the hobbit, saying "One thing I've learned about hobbits: they are a most hardy folk". "Foolhardy maybe. He's a Took!" Merry says in return.

Differences[edit | edit source]

After going to Isengard, in the movie, Gandalf and the Company return to Edoras where Pippin looks into the palantír. However, in the book, the Company set out from Isengard and camped in a dale close to Dol Baran; it was here where Pippin looked into the palantír.[1]:591-4 Furthermore, a Nazgûl flew over them on its way north,[1]:595-6 (this event is not present in the scene) causing Gandalf to ride to Minas Tirith, taking Pippin with him.