Discordia concours in Tolkien's musical universe /

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Renneisen, Elizabeth
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Middle Tennessee State University
In J. R. R. Tolkien's myth "The Ainulindale," Iluvatar constructs the world of Middle-earth through music. While the Ainur, Tolkien's idea of angelic beings, interweave melodies to reflect the beauty of the world, one Ainu, Melkor, interjects dissonance of his own that is responsible for the evil in Middle-earth. The act of creation through music seems to be Tolkien's own device; however, music as an essential component in cosmogony does have philosophical precedents, including ideas propounded by Pythagoras and Boethius. This interjection of discord has a significant effect on The Silmarillion as a mythology for England. All mythologies have some basis in reality, whether they explain the origins of customs, ideas, or even people. Melkor's influence can be traced throughout The Silmarillion and The Lord of the Rings. Ultimately it is Sauron, minion of Melkor, that is responsible for the emergence of Man as the dominant being in the Fourth Age, thus tying Middle-earth to our own history and lending Tolkien's stories credibility in terms of a national mythology---not as a fantasy.
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