Okay, so I started up threads like this on other forums, but I just can't help myself when it comes to the brilliant Boromir. He is such an ambiguous character, bursting with extreme good and bad qualities. He's brave, but also rash. He's a leader, but cannot follow. He stands up for what he believes, but can be seen as stubborn.
So what I want to know is, what do you think of this wonderfully debatable (and delectable ) man? Do you see him as a hero worthy of praise, or a man who deserved the end he got? Do the good qualities outweigh the bad, and vice-versa? Is his part in the story significant or is he simply a tool Tolkien used to depict the lure of the Ring?
Debate away. I think you all know where I stand, so maybe I'll let others have their say before I begin to rant and rave like the Boromir cheerleader I am.
~ Little by little, one travels far. ~ -J.R.R Tolkien
And to be honest, until the movies came out and I started hearing this on forums and so on, I never even thought of Boromir as a villain.
In my opinion, he is certainly a hero, and not just because he was a member of the Fellowship. His actions against Frodo were not purely done because of his will - I saw it as yet another demonstration of the Ring's lure to those it sees as especially vulnerable and profitable to its use. I also see some of Denethor's influence in it - I do think that a parent's values will shape those of their children, so part of it lay with his father.
Just because Boromir tried to take the Ring doesn't mean he's a villain. He answered for himself later to Aragorn and admitted the truth, fought to protect Merry and Pippin, and died repentant. (Didn't mean that to sound so.... pious, for lack of a better word...)
He was drawn to the Ring possibly because he held a chance for power that was above the others, save Aragorn, but he held it without the strength of the blood of Numenor (in terms of the line of kings). The Ring possibly saw him as a way to get back to Sauron, under the theory that Boromir would take It, try to weild It, and therefore reveal Its existence and location to Sauron, who would attack and reclaim It. I doubt it stemmed solely from Boromir himself.
.*.~.*.~.*.~.*. Lady Elwen Iluvalatari Namarië tenna telwan, meldonya... Nai im almië Iluvatar nar or le... .*.~.*.~.*.~.*. Ava lave endarlya na rucina. Elyë harye vorima mi Eru; harye vorima yando mi nin... Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, at least you'll land somewhere among the stars. .*.~.*.~.*.~.*. .:*:.Polished Quill.:*:.
lol yeah - wonder what on earth could have inspired that avvie, eh?
But back on track... I suppose that I always saw Boromir as a hero gone astray, led aside by things beyond his control.
Primarily, his most abhorrent act would be trying to take the Ring from Frodo. Under that situation, I say that he was under the power of the Ring, again being demonstrated by Tolkien as an example of what it could drive people to do, since at that point, we don't see Gollum. I'm not trying to compare Gollum to Boromir or vice versa - I'm talking about the strength of the Ring...
Aside from that, there's the pressure of his father; in a time (I'm assuming this is the same sort of time period) the wishes of a father were the most important thing and children would do almost anything they wished. In seeing only the glory that the Ring theoretically could bring to Gondor, Boromir couldn't see the reasoning for the warnings that accompanied it.
But even so, he volunteered to aid the Ringbearer in his quest as much as he could, and repented, for lack of a better word, seeing that Elwen has already used it, for his attack on Frodo. Following that, he fought to the death to protect Merry and Pippin, never once questioning the actuality of his death. Upon being found by Aragorn, he relinquished his hold of Gondor to him as the rightful heir (think the movie version here esp.) and spoke of what had truly passed to drive Frodo away.
He was a hero indeed for his actions, but a villain by "outside forces". Taking Kantian ethics into consideration (yes, I spend too much time with Philosophy professors... and as such, may have this mixed up), the good deeds should not outweigh the bad; the bad should be punished (i.e. for Boromir, his death), and the good should be rewarded (i.e. dying in "glory").
Post by Lady Adara on Aug 13, 2005 18:45:00 GMT -5
Interesting topic - I have never heard of this viewpoint before, nor have I ever truly considered Boromir to be a villain in any way until I saw the films and saw how Peter had all but had Boromir attempt murder upon Frodo...
I see Boromir as the strength of Gondor that helped keep his people together as his father lost the battle to the Palantir. His father also, in a sense, drove Boromir to his actions, pushing him to "gain the Ring" to "save Gondor", and as Elbereth said, one can assume that it was at a time when a father's wishes were law to his children.
Furthermore, the Ring has a very substantial lure to all those that it believes can aid It in Its quest to return to Sauron. Look at Frodo, at the end, nearly succumbing to Its power. Boromir was no different, and as a man of Gondor, I think that that, in part, would have had to do with it.
Bur regardless, he died saving Merry and Pippin and fully acknowledged and "repented" of what he had done.
This quote sums it up nicely: He that falls into sin is a man; that grieves at it, is a saint; that boasts of it, is a devil. - Thomas Fuller, Holy State--Of Self-Praising
I think that says enough, doesn't it?
*~*~*~* Sorceress of Darshiva... The Child of Dark... Servant of the Dark Prophecy... Who am I? Do you know me? Let me tell you... The Belgariad... The Malloreon... The intertwined Prophecies...
Post by Mithwen Delbaeth on Aug 15, 2005 14:35:40 GMT -5
I think he was bad but redeemed himself. He saved Merry and Pippin. He kept on fighting even after he got ingured. He may have been corupted by the Ring but he wasn't the only one. Isildur an Gollum had been as well. But Boromir came back, he tried to tell Frodo he hadn't meant it. (but unfortunatly Frodo was too far away)
Bealocwealm hafað fréone frecan forth onsended giedd sculon singan gléomenn sorgiende on Meduselde þæt he ma no wære his dryhtne dyrest and mæga deorost. Bealo...
Post by miniSlayer on Jan 14, 2006 10:50:13 GMT -5
I've never thought of Boromir as a villian. He was misguided by the Ring's power and his father's influence. He loves his father, and to be completely cold to him would just be really mean. The Ring's power affected almost everyone, even Frodo, so Boromir obviously has no fault in that.
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