Meghan (the_powerlines) wrote in tolkienites,

Regarding Faramir's Mother

Alright, discussion time.

Many people hold the theory that perhaps Denethor's wife died in childbirth, having Faramir. It doesn't say so in the books, it only says she "died untimely". This would account in part for why Denethor does not love Faramir as he loves Boromir- he resents Faramir for being the reason his wife died. An interesting theory, yes? And one that I used to subscribe to, just because I thought it added yet another layer to the family dynamic.
But then, while rereading ROTK last night, I came upon the following paragraph.

"They were clad in warm raiment and heavy cloaks, and over all the Lady Eowyn wore a great blue mantle of the colour of deep summer-night, and it was set with silver stars above hem and throat. Faramir had sent for this robe and had wrapped it about her; and he thought that she looked fair and queenly indeed as she stood there at his side. The mantle was wrought for his mother, Finduilas of Amroth, who died untimely, and was to him but a memory of loveliness in far days and of his first grief; and her robe seemed to him raiment fitting for the beauty and sadness of Eowyn." --The Steward and the King, p. 940

Now I don't think Faramir's mother died in childbirth. The phrase "of his first grief" would seem to imply that he remembers her death, which he surely would not if he was just a baby. Or does it just mean "first grief" to mean foremost and primary grief, and it has nothing to do with sequence of events at all? In that case, it could just mean that her dying in childbirth was the worst thing that ever happened to Faramir, because it caused so much strife with Denethor.

In the end I have to believe from this paragraph that Faramir remembers his mother, and therefore it isn't likely she died having him. What do you think? It's obviously just a little detail, and it's all speculation, but I'm interested. *prods community* Talk!
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