Ranger patrol tactics

Western(esse) Martial Arts / Numenorean Martial Arts....

Combat and self-defense in Middle-earth

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Re: Ranger patrol tactics

Postby Grimolt » Mon Jul 23, 2018 1:40 am

Thank you for posting the Michael Martinez article links, that opened a resource to me that I was not previously aware of. (Bow)

I have a sneaking suspicion that Tolkien's ideas about how sparse the Dúnedain population in the North was involved several different factors.

First the Dúnedain felt responsible to be the buffer between the common folk and all sorts of danger, thus living a risky lifestyle not lending itself to long life and lots of offspring.
In Appendix A, ii There is a list of the bloodline of Elendil that shows 40 men from Elendil down to Aragorn II, of which nine died untimely deaths. I'm no mathmagician, but that's just over 20%. If one considered just the Chieftains of the Dúnedain after Arthedain, of which there are 15 preceding Aragorn II, four of them died untimely, which pushes the percentage over 25%.

In addition to living an obviously risky lifestyle, the Dúnedain appear to have been remarkably conservative folks who were awesome at contraception.
Although they reached physical maturity at the same age as common folk, they could easily live twice as long or longer while staying healthy and vigorous until quite late in life. With Aragorn II for instance, we know from Appendix A that he was given his majority at age 20, and we also know that he didn't marry until he was 88. (68 years of being a soldier and his only vice was his tobacco pipe, mind blown!!!). Arwen was like 2700 years old when she married Aragorn. No kids prior, no exes or wasbands in the picture.
He and Arwen lived in wedded bliss for six-score years! 80 years of marriage, and they had one son and at least two (but maybe more) unnamed daughters. It's no wonder the Dúnedain were at near extinction population levels. Maybe I'm going a little overboard on this particular relationship as being indicative of the Dúnedain childbearing practices, but Samwise and Rose Gamgee by contrast had 13 children between 1421 and 1442. At Arwen and Aragorns birth rates, the only population on middle-earth that wouldn't overwhelm the Dúnedain just in sheer breeding numbers would be Ents!

Love not too well the work of thy hands and the devices of thy heart; and remember that the true hope of the Noldor lieth in the West and cometh from the sea.
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Re: Ranger patrol tactics

Postby Elleth » Tue Jul 24, 2018 4:05 pm

If I recall correctly, there's a mention in a letter somewhere in which Tolkien addresses the low fertility of the elves: each child drew a great amount of energy from them - after a few children they were simply no longer able to produce more, and in at least a notable case or two the experience was so draining the mother either died or was no longer able to remain in Middle-earth, and had to return West. (Elvish men experience a similar phenomenon it seems: Feanor after creating the Silmarils was simply physically incapable of repeating the feat).

I suspect to the extent the Dunedain carried a shadow of the long life of the elves, so they shared some of their limitations.
Persona: Aerlinneth, Dúnedain of Amon Lendel c. TA 3010.

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