Théodwyn | Women of Arda - Ladies of Rohan | Part 5 of 5
Théodwyn was the daughter of Thengel King, the sixteenth king of Rohan, and Morwen Steelsheen. She was the last of five children, born in T.A 2963, and the younger sister of Théoden King. She was described as the fairest of her siblings and her brother loved her dearly.
In T.A 2989, Théodwyn married Éomund of Eastfold, the Lord of Alburg and a distant descendant of Eofor, the third grandson of Eorl the Young. He was a renowned warrior, but would often ride out to battle orcs in hot anger and with few men. In T.A 2991, they had a son, Éomer, and four years later their daughter Éowyn was born.
Éomund was killed in T.A 3002, when he pursued a band of orcs to the Emyn Muil and was surprised by a strong force lying in wait there. Théodwyn grew ill not long after and died at the young age of 39. Her children were taken into the care of her elder brother, Théoden, and raised in his household.
Éowyn would go on to slay the Witch-King of Angmar in defence of her uncle and marry Faramir of Gondor, becoming the first princess of Ithilien. Éomer would inherit the kingship after their uncle’s death and was called Éadig, “the blessed”.
[Quick slightly edited repost of my thread on Twitter.]
I actually think it’s very possible to do a woman-centric story based on Tolkien’s work that is canonically-justifiable, if not canonically-accurate. The essential nonexistence of them in the adapted works is not because of some impossibility, but because of a lack of creative imagination and because of a heinously bad understanding of what feminist art is and should be.
The ruling queens of Númenor are, as a rule, not treated terribly well by the world they live in, but one in particular gets it extremely bad. Tar-Míriel, who was not actually a ruling queen but only because her power was usurped, is one of the best examples of this. By rights, Tar-Míriel ought to have been queen. Instead, her cousin (Ar-) Pharazôn forcibly married her and stole her crown. He is most noted for being the King of Númenor who was seduced by Sauron and triggered the destruction of Westernesse. Míriel likely never lost her faith and never became corrupted in the way her husband/captor did. Yet when Eru Ilúvatar cast Númenor into the sea, there was no mercy for her. She tried to climb to the peak of the holy mountain Meneltarma, but was drowned. Míriel was one of the many slaughtered innocents of Númenor, but her story is especially painful because it poses an important ‘what if?’: what if patriarchal violence was not endemic? She also, perhaps more importantly, raises the question of: what if women behaved exactly like the men they are surrounded by?
Fast forward a couple thousand years, and Éowyn is born in Aldburg to Éomund and Théodwyn, daughter of Morwen of Lossarnach (a descendant of the Númenórean diaspora). Éowyn’s parents die, she and her brother are made wards of her uncle, Théoden, King of the Mark. Éowyn is unrecognised, generally uncared for, and she knows that owing to her gender she is denied the privileges that ought to be afforded to her by her rank. She is isolated, she is miserable, and she is angry. She is also haunted on all sides by the active and latent violence of men. There is the predation of Gríma Wormtongue, but there is the neglect of Théoden. Men either care too much or not enough about her, and in both instances she suffers terribly. Ghosts, spirits, shades, whatever, exist in Middle-Earth. They tend to not be especially morally good figures, and they tend to not be tethered to a single place.
So here’s the take: Tar-Míriel as the Mephistopheles to Éowyn’s Faust. Imagine young, lonely, desolate Éowyn being reached out to by someone who not just understands her pain, but has lived it. Unlike when she meets Faramir, however, Míriel has good reason to be deeply embittered about the moral underpinnings of the world (she was literally smote by god for something she could not change!) and no reason to have an ideological commitment to semi-pacifism. And Míriel, for having her ghostly status, will no doubt be aware that not only is there a coming war, but there is someone singularly dedicated to restoring the kingdom of the Numenorean diaspora. Yes, this kingdom is descended from a semi-discreet line to Ar-Pharazôn’s line, but why did they not try to save Míriel? And surely that is a question that will resonate with Éowyn:
All your words are but to say: you are a woman, and your part is in the house. But when the men have died in battle and honour, you have leave to be burned drowned in the house, for the men will need it no more.
Thus, Míriel and Éowyn, Tolkien’s dispossessed women, get to say, uhhh, Goodbye Eorl.
men of middle-earth ♞ house of éorl ♞ headcanon disclaimer
Théodwyn was the youngest daughter of King Thengel of Rohan. She was close to her brother Théoden and aided him in raising his son Théodred after the death of his wife. Théodwyn was a gentle woman but a great rider of horses, and took one of the mearas as her steed. She married Éomund, First Marshal of the Mark and a descendant of Éofor of Aldburg. Their love was great, but it was cut short too soon when Éomund was slain in pursuit of a band of orc-raiders. Already weakened by grief, Théodwyn soon grew ill and died, leaving her children Éomer and Éowyn parentless.
Théoden King, her brother, took her children under his wing, where they were raised with their cousin Théodred. Éomer grew strong and tall, eventually becoming the Third Marshal of the Mark and inheriting his father’s command of the East-mark, defending Rohan from the orcs of Mordor. Éowyn grew in grace and pride, remaining in Edoras while her brother was granted a position in the king’s armies, though she was nearly as capable a warrior as he and chafed to be relegated to her uncle’s minder as Théoden was slowly overcome by the spell of Saruman.
Nonetheless, Éowyn was loyal to her king, remaining by his side and doing what she could to combat the ill counsels of Gríma Wormtongue, who had sold his services to the White Wizard. She was glad when Gandalf lifted the spell upon her uncle, but frustrated to be turned from battle once more when Théoden rode to Helm’s Deep. Instead she was given the responsibility of tending to Edoras in his absence.
Éowyn attempted to follow Aragorn into the Paths of the Dead, but was turned aside despite her pleading and her hopeless love for him. She was denied once more the chance for glory in battle when Théoden ordered her to remain behind upon his ride from Dunharrow to Minas Tirith, but this time she had taken enough. Éowyn disguised herself as a man, taking the alias Dernhelm, and rode with the Riders of Rohan to the Battle of the Pelennor Fields with the halfling Meriadoc Brandybuck, likewise barred from combat by the king but unwilling to accept such a dismissal.
Upon the battlefield, Dernhelm fought bravely to defend the King, and when he was felled by the Lord of the Nazgûl she stood between the Witch-king and her uncle. The Nazgûl boasted that “no living man may hinder me,” echoing the prophecy of Glorfindel a thousand years earlier, but Dernhelm was not deterred. She removed her helmet, letting her long golden hair fly free and declaring, “No living man am I! You look upon a woman.”
This revelation shocked her foe greatly, giving Meriadoc—a hobbit, not a Man—the opportunity to stab him from behind with a Barrow-blade, forged long ago by the Dúnedain of Arnor to fight the Witch-king and dispel the evil magic rendering him invincible. Then Éowyn slew the Nazgûl Lord, a feat which not even King Eärnur of old could accomplish, though her shield-arm was broken and she was bitterly wounded by the Nazgûl’s Black Breath.
As the Rohirrim marched away with the body of Théoden, Prince Imrahil of Dol Amroth recognized that Éowyn still drew breath, and took her to the Houses of Healing. There she was healed from death by Aragorn, though she did not recover in time to join Éomer in the assault on the Black Gate of Mordor. While she recovered, anxiously waiting for news of that battle, she met Faramir, the last Steward of Gondor, and found love with him.
At last the War of the Ring came to a close, and Éowyn discovered that she had wearied of battle and yearned now to become a healer, loving all things that grow and are not barren. She accompanied her brother back to Rohan and saw the burial of Théoden and Éomer’s coronation, then left for Ithilien where she wed Faramir. Éowyn kept her friendship with Meriadoc for the rest of their lives, sending him great gifts when he became the Master of Buckland, and lived the rest of her days in happiness with Faramir and their children.
My Immortal!Bones Headcanons
Part I: Life in Middle-earth
So I just finished watching Lord of the Rings: Return of The King with my family, and I thought about this post I did a while back. I already have loads of ideas for this.
Note that I have inserted some canonical facts from J.R.R. Tolkien’s books (Wikipedia.com).
Middle-earth is a continent on a flat Earth cosmology planet known as Arda (Wikipedia.com).
Arda is a pre-warp planet that Bones has been transferred to by the Secret Society of Supernatural and Inhuman Studies (SSSIS) with his new identity as Éomer.
The humans on Arda are not ones from Earth.
With his new identity, Bones went to live in Rohan.
Bones becomes a soldier under the command of Éomund, the Chief Marshalof the Mark of Rohan under King Théoden in the years leading up to the War of the Ring (Wikipedia.com).
Bones becomes close friends with Éomund, therefore leading up to him and his wife, Théodwyn, welcoming him into their home.
For fourteen years Bones had been on Arda, and he is considered as part of Éomund’s family.
Their daughter of seven years of age, Éowyn, he has come to consider her as his little sister.
Bones is close with the family and he knows that they will start asking questions at some point.
When that time does come, they ask him about why he doesn’t seem to be aging much.
He was about to answer when suddenly he and Éomund were called to fight a band of Orcs near Emyn Muil. There, Éomund was killed (Wikipedia.com).
After, Éomer goes back to the family and tells them of the sad news.
It wasn’t long after that Théodwyn died of grief (Wikipedia.com).
For a short while Éomer looked after Éowyn. It made him think of his daughter back on Earth—how was she doing, he wondered.
It was at one point that Bones told Éowyn of who he really was and where he came from. She didn’t know what to think at first.
Very soon after she accepts him for who he is because “it doesn’t matter where he came from.” She loved him as a brother nonetheless.
When Bones realized he couldn’t do nothing more to support himself and Éowyn, they went to Théodwyn’s brother Théoden, the King and Lord of the Mark of Rohan.
Théoden took them in, and considered them both as if they were his own children (Wikipedia.com).
Éomer later becomes the third Marshal of the Mark, becoming a strong leader of Men (Wikipedia.com).
At that time Éomer meets Théoden’s son, Théodred. They too grow close and become like brothers (Wikipedia.com).
The events of the Lord of the Rings take place.
After the death of Théoden, Éomer is formally crowned as King of Rohan.
Éomer renewals the Oath of Eorl with Aragorn after the latter had been crowned King Elessar of the Reunited Kingdoms, swearing everlasting friendship between Rohan and Gondor (Wikipedia.com).
He became known as Éomer Éadig, or “the Blessed” (Wikipedia.com).
When it became suitable for the SSSIS to intervene and bring Bones back to Earth, they helped to fake his death, and take him without a trace.
As Bones was leaving the planet, he reminisced on all the things he witnessed and experienced while on the planet: he made friends; he fought; he even became a king!
This life was quite an adventure for him—like a story out of a book, brought to life.
Well, that’s the end of this post! I hope you liked these headcanons!
If you have a movie with Karl Urban in mind that I should do next, I’d love to hear it!
Thank you for your time in reading this post!
In the Pass to Dunharrow - A Lord of the Rings Story
In the Pass to Dunharrow – A Lord of the Rings Story
Eowyn, daughter of Éomund and Théodwyn and Shieldmaiden of Rohan climbed down from her horse on the path to Dunharrow. She had led her people along as ordered by her uncle, King Theoden. She had been reluctant to follow his orders but she would never disobey him. She knew that her uncle had meant well but Eowyn was a fighter and champion of her people deep down. She wanted to be at Hornsburg at…
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