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  1. #1
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    Jan 2007
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    A Change is Strongly Suggested

    I was reading the Appendices from Return of the King again the other day, and, in reading through the section on Dwarves, specifically the footnote from the aftermath of the Battle of Azanulbizar, I noticed that the fallen Dwaves were not buried in the earth but, rather, burned on pyres. This was because of the Dwarves’ very strong tradition of burying their dead in tombs of stone. Given that they were far from a place of burial, they chose funeral pyres as an alternative to the distasteful thought of burying their dead in the ground.

    Fast forward to me in-game, passing by the black pool outside the Westgate of Moria. I notice several short burial mounds in the ground with headstones, no doubt the final resting place of the Dwarves that died in Volume II, Book 1. Given what we know about Dwarves’ burial traditions, this is inconsistent with lore that is available to Turbine through the license.

    So, I would strongly suggest one of two options to rectify the error:

    1. Place the ashes of a funeral pyre outside the Westgate, as a stone tomb would be disturbed, or
    2. As the expedition Dwarves have access to Moria, establish stone tombs within, perhaps just within the Westgate.
    [SIZE="3"][i][B][FONT="Palatino Linotype"]The ability to serve and the ability to rule have no difference, for both are designed to seek the best for another.[/FONT][/B][/i][/SIZE]

  2. #2
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    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Good catch.
    Arda Shrugged - Elendilstone / Landroval / Anor

  3. #3

    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    But what about Balin's tomb? That's in the books.
    Various Hobbits, Thwilda the dwarf lass, and Gnersk, Stalker

  4. #4
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    Dec 2007
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    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by Siegfriedpf View Post
    But what about Balin's tomb? That's in the books.
    Yes, and and he is in a stone tomb.

    The issue is that the dwarves who perished in Vol 2 Book 1 were buried when they should have been burned in a funeral pyre OR taken inside and placed in a stone tomb.

  5. #5

    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    See that? It's community and dev attention to detail like this that sets LoTRO apart. Bravo!

  6. #6
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    Jan 2007
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    703

    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by statuscrow View Post
    See that? It's community and dev attention to detail like this that sets LoTRO apart. Bravo!
    Well, that's half right, at least.
    [SIZE="3"][i][B][FONT="Palatino Linotype"]The ability to serve and the ability to rule have no difference, for both are designed to seek the best for another.[/FONT][/B][/i][/SIZE]

  7. #7

    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by Dalthalion View Post
    Well, that's half right, at least.
    That was out of deference for the plethora of things they've nailed.

  8. #8
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    1,866

    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by Dalthalion View Post
    Given that they were far from a place of burial, they chose funeral pyres as an alternative to the distasteful thought of burying their dead in the ground.
    It's actually not the thought of burying their dead in the ground that was distasteful to them, it was that they didn't have time to build tombs of stone but did not want to leave the bodies 'to beast or bird or carrion-orc.' This is true too of the dwarves that fell before the West-gate, and perhaps it was the worry that the reek of the burning would draw foes (or the beast in the water!) to savage their fallen kin that caused them to erect fairly hasty burial mounds.

    MoL

  9. #9

    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    It's actually not the thought of burying their dead in the ground that was distasteful to them, it was that they didn't have time to build tombs of stone but did not want to leave the bodies 'to beast or bird or carrion-orc.' This is true too of the dwarves that fell before the West-gate, and perhaps it was the worry that the reek of the burning would draw foes (or the beast in the water!) to savage their fallen kin that caused them to erect fairly hasty burial mounds.

    MoL
    beat me to it. but the other half of the OP is unanswered: where are the pyre remains? or has it "been too long" to see any visible remains? who are the tombstones for? or is the tombstones the only remaining visible marks of the original pyre site?

    Jaylaxel - 83 LM | Moiron - 120 Champ | Aedush - R5 Stalker

  10. #10
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    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    So it was that after Azanulbizar the Dwarves dispersed again. But first
    with great labour they stripped all their dead, so that Orcs should not come
    and win there a store of weapons and mail. It is said that every Dwarf that
    went from that battlefield was bowed under a heavy burden. Then they built
    many pyres and burned all the bodies of their kin. There was a great felling
    of trees in the valley, which remained bare ever after, and the reek of the
    burning was seen in Lorien.
    It seems to me that you're both wrong, the only reason the bodies were burned was to keep them from being defiled by the remaining orcs, and too numerous to bury. :P

  11. #11
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    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by Kril View Post
    It seems to me that you're both wrong, the only reason the bodies were burned was to keep them from being defiled by the remaining orcs, and too numerous to bury. :P
    Dummy me, I wasn't looking at the footnote...

    47 Such dealings with their dead seemed grievous to the Dwarves, for it was against their use; but to make such tombs as they were accustomed to build (since they will lay their dead only in stone not in earth) would have taken many years. To fire therefore they turned, rather than leave their kin to beast or bird or carrion-orc. But those who fell in Azanulbizar were honoured in memory, and to this day a Dwarf will say proudly of one of his sires: "he was a burned Dwarf", and that is enough.
    This would make the OP correct in what he said, the bodies most likely would have been wrapped for later burial, most likely inside Khazad-Dum. Which also brings up the question, why didn't we have to fight any ghost-dwarves???

  12. #12
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    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    The afterlife is racist and sexist, let me tell ya No oathbreaker hobbits, or dwarves, or elves....or women

    *hides behind his Captain*
    This Space Is Reserved.

  13. #13
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    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    The biggest thing I caught out of all this is that dorfs really REALLY stink when you burn them! Poor dorfies! Poor elves downwind in Lothlorien!

  14. #14

    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by Kril View Post
    Dummy me, I wasn't looking at the footnote...

    This would make the OP correct in what he said, the bodies most likely would have been wrapped for later burial, most likely inside Khazad-Dum. Which also brings up the question, why didn't we have to fight any ghost-dwarves???
    It's unclear what becomes of dwarves when they die. The Eldar speculated that they had their own section within the Halls of Mandos in Valinor, which woudl suggest that, like Elves, their spirts are recalled upon death. That's what happens when you're created by a Vala who didn't read the full instruction manual first!
    Various Hobbits, Thwilda the dwarf lass, and Gnersk, Stalker

  15. #15
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    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    It's actually not the thought of burying their dead in the ground that was distasteful to them, it was that they didn't have time to build tombs of stone but did not want to leave the bodies 'to beast or bird or carrion-orc.' This is true too of the dwarves that fell before the West-gate, and perhaps it was the worry that the reek of the burning would draw foes (or the beast in the water!) to savage their fallen kin that caused them to erect fairly hasty burial mounds.

    MoL
    Yet you put graves by the Black Pool outside Moria?

  16. #16
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    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by Kraggy View Post
    Yet you put graves by the Black Pool outside Moria?
    Yessir. We've actually gotten a lot of positive feedback about seeing the graves there, bringing home what the opening of the West-gate cost the dwarves. Having nothing there would lose some of that impact.

    MoL

  17. #17
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    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    Yessir. We've actually gotten a lot of positive feedback about seeing the graves there, bringing home what the opening of the West-gate cost the dwarves. Having nothing there would lose some of that impact.

    MoL
    Wouldn't the bodies wrapped in fabric on a cart inside the gate do the same thing? Perhaps with a a dwarf working on their stone tombs somewhere.

    Also, it would be interesting to see a dwarf-tomb (besides the chamber of Mazarbul) to show how they buried their dead. Really, we know how the people of Bree have done so in the past (Barrow-Downs) and present (little graveyard north of Bree), there is a graveyard in Mirkwood. But there is no such area in all of Moria, and we've been through its best, and worst areas.

  18. #18
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    78

    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    A dwarf ghost instance would have been sweet while we were in Moria.. For a place that had so much loss of life you would think we would have seen more of that...

  19. #19

    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by Kril View Post
    Dummy me, I wasn't looking at the footnote...

    So it was that after Azanulbizar the Dwarves dispersed again. But first
    with great labour they stripped all their dead, so that Orcs should not come
    and win there a store of weapons and mail. It is said that every Dwarf that
    went from that battlefield was bowed under a heavy burden. Then they built
    many pyres and burned all the bodies of their kin. There was a great felling
    of trees in the valley, which remained bare ever after, and the reek of the
    burning was seen in Lorien.

    47 Such dealings with their dead seemed grievous to the Dwarves, for it was against their use; but to make such tombs as they were accustomed to build (since they will lay their dead only in stone not in earth) would have taken many years. To fire therefore they turned, rather than leave their kin to beast or bird or carrion-orc. But those who fell in Azanulbizar were honoured in memory, and to this day a Dwarf will say proudly of one of his sires: "he was a burned Dwarf", and that is enough.
    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    Yessir. We've actually gotten a lot of positive feedback about seeing the graves there, bringing home what the opening of the West-gate cost the dwarves. Having nothing there would lose some of that impact.

    MoL
    All this boils down to one thing for me personally: isn't a dwarf "grave" in the ground accomplishing some serious lore-breaking?

    the suggestion about wrapped dwarves in the cart is good for the VolII intro. besides mazarbul, it would be nice to see a tomb elsewhere.

    I suppose all the positive feedback come from folks who aren't aware of the lore-breaking situation of "dwarven earth-graves".

    Jaylaxel - 83 LM | Moiron - 120 Champ | Aedush - R5 Stalker

  20. #20

    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    Yessir. We've actually gotten a lot of positive feedback about seeing the graves there, bringing home what the opening of the West-gate cost the dwarves. Having nothing there would lose some of that impact.
    Hear, hear. Brings a tear to my dwarven eye whenever I (infrequently) pass that way.

    The first time I entered Moria, and saw the graves, I, the player, hesitated and collected my thoughts.

  21. #21
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    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by LHuskey View Post
    A dwarf ghost instance would have been sweet while we were in Moria.. For a place that had so much loss of life you would think we would have seen more of that...
    You can't have dorf ghosties, because Aule didn't give dorfs souls!

  22. #22
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    Jun 2007
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    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Come to think of it, there's a quest arc in the Foundations of Stone where you find some dwarf corpses (and the Nameless who've been gnawing on them). You're actually sent there to give the corpses proper burials because their current state is so distasteful.

    Of course, they're also corpses lying on the ground in the open in an area swarming with really bad beasties. I doubt anyone would expect you to build a sufficient pyre for them, much less a stone tomb, or to cart six bodies back across the lake. Perhaps a boat, but then you'd actually have to GET a boat into the foundations, and take it down to the water, etc.

    By contrast, the dwarves could just drag the bodies from the west gate inside and close the door behind them, letting the bodies sit while they find a place to stash them.

    "Life is 10% what you make it, and 90% how you take it." - Irving Berlin

  23. #23

    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    I'd like to point out that these Dwarves were pulled underwater by the Watcher, and at least one was found alive. It is likely the mounds are just there in memory of those Dwarves, not their actual resting places...










    Or I could be completely wrong and no drowning took place!
    My first raid idea.
    The Third
    The Second (Technically the third, but the real second one I have disowned!)

  24. #24

    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by aleczander View Post
    All this boils down to one thing for me personally: isn't a dwarf "grave" in the ground accomplishing some serious lore-breaking?
    It seems to me that some margin of tolerance is permissible given that dwarves abide in mountains and thus live -- and die, and are buried -- beneath a great mass of both stone and earth.

    Perhaps their culture would have found acceptable a practice of, say, protecting their corpses from the touch of earth by wrapping about them an encasement of stone, such as a stone cairn above or below ground.

    By that measure, I would not characterize this as a "serious" violation of lore, nor even consider definitive its status as a violation.

    <cheapshot>I suppose I should also expect that none of us participating in this thread play runekeepers.</cheapshot>
    Last edited by 8skyfaller; May 11 2010 at 09:36 PM.
    “If all you take from my instruction is that trade is vital to Dale, you have understood nothing. These dirty dispossessed, as you call them, are buyers, sellers, and guests of Dale. All the kingdoms touched by our roads are not strangers to us, but kin. Calamity in their lands is hardship in ours.” - Erna, Queen Regent of Dale

  25. #25
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    Re: A Change is Strongly Suggested

    Quote Originally Posted by 8skyfaller View Post
    <cheapshot>I suppose I should also expect that none of us participating in this thread play runekeepers.</cheapshot>
    Or hobbits, so far from the Shire.

    Sylux is right, though: the attack of the Watcher left no bodies behind. A unique memorial object of some kind would have been less open to interpretation, but sometimes in the Art meetings you need to prioritize assets, and if we can reuse some we're more likely to get others; Moria needed a lot of new art.

    MoL

 

 
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