Image by Jan Huber

November

 

November 1

Day 305

Basic Reading: 

    The Two Towers: Book Four, Chapter X: The Choices of Master Samwise
    *This chapter will be read over the course of two days, so read about half of it today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Two, VIII: Kirith Ungol, up to The Choices of Master Samwise


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Gondor, The Shire, Ephel Dúath (Mountains of Shadow), Mordor (Nameless Land), Lothlórien, Rivendell

  • Timeline: Third Age March 13, 3019

  • Other: Watch the video “Who was Shelob?” on the YouTube channel GeekZone.


Discussion Questions:

    1. How could Sam speak words in a language he didn’t know?
    2. Do you think Shelob survived or died?
    3. Did Sam make the right choice in taking the Ring to finish the Quest?

 
 

November 2

Day 306

Basic Reading: 

    The Two Towers: Book Four, Chapter X: The Choices of Master Samwise
    *Finish this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Two, VIII: Kirith Ungol, The Choices of Master Samwise


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Barad-dûr (Lugbúrz), Minas Morgul (Dead City)

  • Timeline: Third Age March 13, 3019

  • Other: Watch Peter Jackson’s film adaptation of The Two Towers. Note the similarities and differences between the book and the movie.


Discussion Questions:

    1. Was Sam right to go back for Frodo, or should he have continued on with the Quest alone?
    2. What do you learn about Orcs from this chapter?
    3. What would you do in Sam’s place?

 

November 3

Day 307

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter I: Minas Tirith
    *This chapter will be read over the course of four days, so read about a fourth of it today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, II: Book Five Begun and Abandoned, (i) Minas Tirith

  • Background:

    • The Nature of Middle-Earth: Part Three, XXII: The Rivers and Beacon-Hills of Gondor


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Gondor, Anórien, Rohan, Belfalas, Mordor, Minas Tirith (Guarded City), The Shire, Isengard, Lebennin, Dol Amroth, Ered Nimrais

    • White Mountains: Amon Dîn, Eilenach, Nardol, Erelas, Min-Rimmon, Calenhad, Halifirien

    • Minas Tirith Region: Pelennor Fields, Rammas Echor, River Anduin, Osgiliath, Emyn Arnen, Ithilien, Harlond, Lossarnach, Mount Mindolluin

    • Minas Tirith City: Great Gate, Tower of Ecthelion, The Citadel, Court of the Fountain

  • Timeline: Third Age March 9, 3019

  • Other: Look up illustrations of Minas Tirith.


Discussion Questions:

    1. Who were the three riders that passed heading west?
    2. What is the most impressive city you have ever seen?
    3. Do the people of Gondor understand their dire circumstances?

 
 

November 4

Day 308

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter I: Minas Tirith
    *Read the second fourth of this chapter today, so that you have finished about half.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Expanded Story:

    • Sauron Defeated: Part Two: The Notion Club Papers, Part Two, Nights 67 - 68


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Gondor, The Shire, Minas Tirith, Rohan, Rhûn, River Anduin, Isengard, Emyn Muil, Falls of Rauros, Moria

    • Minas Tirith City: Court of the Fountain

    • Arda: Númenor (Westernesse)

  • Timeline: Third Age  March 9, 3019


Discussion Questions:

    1. What is your assessment of Denethor’s character?
    2. Why was Denethor interested in Pippin’s sword?
    3. How might these events impact Pippin?

 

November 5

Day 309

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter I: Minas Tirith
    *Read the third fourth of this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Expanded Story:

    • Sauron Defeated: Part Two: The Notion Club Papers, Part Two, Night 69


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Minas Tirith City: The Citadel, Mount Mindolluin, Great Gate

    • Middle-earth: The Shire, Rohan, Ithilien, Gondor, River Anduin (Great River), Mordor, Belfalas, Anórien, Sea of Rhûn (Inland Sea), Mirkwood, Isengard, Minas Tirith

    • Minas Tirith Region: Lossarnach, Lebennin, Osgiliath, Minas Morgul

    • Arda: Umbar, Harad

  • Timeline: Third Age  March 9, 3019

  • Other: Enjoy a morning picnic of bread, butter, cheese, and apples somewhere with a broad view.


Discussion Questions:

    1. Did Shadowfax understand what Pippin said to him?
    2. When have you misjudged someone?
    3. Can Denethor really see the future?

 
 

November 6

Day 310

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter I: Minas Tirith
    *Finish this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, III: Minas Tirith


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

  • Timeline: Third Age March 9, 3019


Discussion Questions:

    1. How are the Men of Gondor different from the Men of Rohan?
    2. Why does Bergil want to stay in the City?
    3. What has Gandalf been doing all day?

 

November 7

Day 311

Basic Reading: 
    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter II: The Passing of the Grey Company
    *This chapter will be read over the course of three days, so read about a third of it today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Expanded Story:

    • Sauron Defeated: Part Two: The Notion Club Papers, Part Two, Night 70


Enrichment Activities:


Discussion Questions:

    1. What brought the Rangers to Rohan?
    2. What is the gift Arwen sent to Aragorn?
    3. Why is Théoden so interested in Merry?

 
 

November 8

Day 312

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter II: The Passing of the Grey Company
    *Read the second third of this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, IV: Many Roads Lead Eastward (1)


Enrichment Activities:


Discussion Questions:

    1. What has caused Aragorn to change his mind?
    2. Was Aragorn wise to use the Stone?
    3. What does Éowyn really want?

 

November 9

Day 313

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter II: The Passing of the Grey Company
    *Finish this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, V: Many Roads Lead Eastward (2)


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Rohan, Dol Amroth, Pelargir, River Anduin, Gondor, Pinnath Gelin, Mordor

    • Harrowdale: Dwimorberg, Dark Door (Door of the Dead), Dunharrow, Erech

    • White Mountains: River Morthond, Tarlang’s Neck, Lamedon, Calembel, River Ciril

    • Arda: Númenor (Westernesse)

  • Timeline: Third Age March 8 - 9, 3019

  • Other: Watch “The Oathbreakers, The Paths of the Dead” on the YouTube channel Nerd of the Rings.


Discussion Questions:

    1. Why is Gimli more fearful than the others?
    2. Who might the man have been whose bones Aragorn examined?
    3. What is the source of Aragorn’s determination?

 
 

November 10

Day 314

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter III: The Muster of Rohan
    *This chapter will be read over the course of two days, so read about half of it today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, II: Book Five Begun and Abandoned, (ii) The Muster of Rohan


Enrichment Activities:


Discussion Questions:

    1. Why did the speech and song of Rohan seem familiar to Merry?
    2. Who do you think placed the Pukel-men along the road, and why?
    3. Why is there so little hope for Aragorn to return from the Paths of the Dead?

 

November 11

Day 315

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter III: The Muster of Rohan
    *Finish this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Background:

    • Sauron Defeated: Part One, Appendix: Drawings of Orthanc and Dunharrow


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Gondor, Rohan (The Mark), Minas Tirith (Mundburg), Mordor, Dagorlad, River Anduin, Eastfold, Mountains of Shadow, Edoras, The Wold

    • Rohan: Argonath (Gate of Kings), Fenmarch

    • Harrowdale: Paths of the Dead, Dunharrow

    • White Mountains: River Snowbourn, Mindolluin, River Entwash, Halifirien, Calenhad, Min-Rimmon, Erelas, Nardol

  • Timeline: Third Age March 10, 3019


Discussion Questions:

    1. Why is the Red Arrow necessary if the beacons have already been lit?
    2. Was it right of Théoden to leave Merry behind?
    3. Was Dernhelm right to take Merry along against the King’s orders?

 
 

November 12

Day 316

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter IV: The Seige of Gondor
    *This chapter will be read over the course of four days, so read about a fourth of it today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, II: Book Five Begun and Abandoned, (iii) Sketches for Book Five


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

  • Timeline: Third Age March 10, 3019


Discussion Questions:

    1. Why was Gandalf disappointed not to find Faramir at Minas Tirith?
    2. How was Gandalf able to ward off the Nazgûl?
    3. Why was Faramir perplexed by Pippin’s presence?

 

November 13

Day 317

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter IV: The Seige of Gondor
    *Read the second fourth of this chapter today, so that you have finished about half.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, II: Book Five Begun and Abandoned, Note on the map accompanying outline VI and Note on the Chronology


Enrichment Activities:


Discussion Questions:

    1. By which road might Gandalf have expected Frodo to enter Mordor?
    2. Which do you think is more dangerous: sending the Ring into Mordor with Frodo, or bringing it to Minas Tirith?
    3. Was it wise of Denethor to send Faramir to defend Osgiliath?

 
 

November 14

Day 318

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter IV: The Siege of Gondor
    *Read the third fourth of this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Expanded Story:

    • Sauron Defeated: Part Two: The Notion Club Papers, Note on ‘The Death of Saint Brendan’ with the text of the published form ‘Imram’


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Rohan, Edoras, Barad-dûr (Dark Tower), Angmar, Morannon (Black Gate), Dol Amroth, Gondor, Harad, Anórien, Mordor

    • Minas Tirith Region: Minas Morgul, Osgiliath, River Anduin, Minas Tirith, Pelennor Fields, Rammas Echor

    • Minas Tirith City: Tower of Ecthelion (White Tower), Great Gate (City-gate), The Citadel

    • Ithilien: Cair Andros

    • Arda: Númenor 

  • Timeline: Third Age March 11 - 12, 3019

  • Other: Watch “The Trebuchet” on the YouTube channel Simple History.


Discussion Questions:

    1. Why is Denethor so set against Gandalf?
    2. What was Denethor doing, causing a pale light to flicker in the Tower?
    3. Is Rohan’s absence more of a tactical or morale disadvantage?

 

November 15

Day 319

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter IV: The Seige of Gondor
    *Finish this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, VI: The Seige of Gondor


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Minas Tirith (City of Gondor), Dol Amroth, River Anduin, Gondor, Harad, Mordor, Rohan

    • Minas Tirith Region: Osgiliath, Mindolluin

    • Minas Tirith City: Tower of Ecthelion (White Tower), The Citadel, Great Gate (City Gate, Gate of Gondor), White Tree (Withered Tree), Fen Hollen (The Closed Door), Silent Street, Second Gate, The Hallows (Rath Dínen)

    • Arda: Númenor 

  • Timeline: Third Age March 12 - 15, 3019

  • Other: Look up illustrations of Grond.


Discussion Questions:

    1. Why was Denethor crying?
    2. Was there any other way for Pippin to save Faramir besides getting Gandalf?
    3. Would Gandalf be able to defeat the Witch King?

 
 

November 16

Day 320

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter V: The Ride of the Rohirrim
    *This chapter will be read over the course of two days, so read about half of it today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Expanded Story:

    • Sauron Defeated: Part Two: The Notion Club Papers, Part Two, Major Divergences in Earlier Versions of the Notion Club Papers (Part Two), (i) The earlier versions of Night 66


Enrichment Activities:


Discussion Questions:

    1. Why didn’t Dernhelm speak with anyone?
    2. Why is Ghân-buri-Ghân helping the Rohirrim?
    3. Why does Théoden trust Ghân-buri-Ghân?

 

November 17

Day 321

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter V: The Ride of the Rohirrim
    *Finish this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, VII: The Ride of the Rohirrim


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

  • Timeline: Third Age March 14 - 15, 3019


Discussion Questions:

    1. What is the significance of the wind changing?
    2. Why didn’t anyone notice the arrival of the Rohirrim?
    3. What motivated Théoden to join the battle?

 
 

November 18

Day 322

Basic Reading: 

    Unfinished Tales: Part Four, I. The Drúedain


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, VIII: The Story Foreseen from Forannest


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps: 

    • Beleriand: Mouths of Sirion, Ered Luin (Ered Lindon), Crossings of Teiglin, Brethil, Ossiriand

    • Anórien: Stonewain Valley, Minas Tirith, White Mountains, Drúadan Forest, Cair Andros

    • White Mountains: Dunharrow

    • Middle-earth: Gondor, Drúwaith Iaur, River Anduin, Mordor, Ithilien, Enedwaith, River Isen, River Lenfui, Andrast, Anórien, Rohan, Anfalas

    • Arda: Haradwaith, Bay of Belfalas

  • Timeline: First Age - Third Age

  • Other: Watch “The Drúedain of Middle-earth” on the YouTube channel Men of the West.


Discussion Questions:

    1. Why didn’t the drûg play a larger role in the historical events of Middle-earth?
    2. Why were the Orcs afraid of the watch-stones?
    3. How might you account for the dwindling friendship and increased persecution of the Drúedain by Men?

 

November 19

Day 323

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter VI: The Battle of the Pelennor Fields
    *This chapter will be read over the course of two days, so read about half of it today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Expanded Story:

    • Sauron Defeated: Part Two: The Notion Club Papers, Part Two, Major Divergences in Earlier Versions of the Notion Club Papers (Part Two), (ii) The original version of Lowdham’s ‘Fragments’ (Night 67) and (iii) The earlier versions of Lowdham’s ‘Fragments’ in Adunaic (Night 67)


Enrichment Activities:


Discussion Questions:

    1. Éowyn called the Witch-king “dwimmerlaik” — what does that mean?
    2. Where was Gandalf during this part of the battle?
    3. Why did Éomer react more strongly to Éowyn’s death than Théoden’s?

 
 

November 20

Day 324

Basic Reading:   

The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter VI: The Battle of the Pelennor Fields
    *Finish this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, IX: The Battle of the Pelennor Fields


Enrichment Activities:


Discussion Questions:

    1. When have you lost hope just before the tide turned?
    2. Which played a greater role in Gondor’s victory: the number of fighters arriving with Aragorn, or the encouragement of their arrival?
    3. What was the most courageous action of this battle?

 

November 21

Day 325

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter VII: The Pyre of Denethor


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, X: The Pyre of Denethor


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Rohan, Gondor, Mordor

    • Gondor: Minas Tirith, River Anduin, Dol Amroth

    • Minas Tirith City: Great Gate, The Citadel, The Closed Door, The Hallows (Rath Dínen), House of the Stewards, Tower of Echthelion (White Tower), Houses of Healing

  • Timeline: Third Age March 15, 3019


Discussion Questions:

    1. Was it the best choice for Gandalf to go save Faramir?
    2. Why did Denethor lose hope?
    3. Were Beregond’s actions justified?

 
 

November 22

Day 326

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter VIII: The Houses of Healing
    *This chapter will be read over the course of two days, so read about half of it today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Expanded Story:

    • Sauron Defeated: Part Two: The Notion Club Papers, Part Two, Major Divergences in Earlier Versions of the Notion Club Papers (Part Two), (iv) Earlier versions of Edwin Lowdham’s Old English text and (v) The page preserved from Edwin Lowdham’s manuscript written in Númenórean script


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Gondor, Rohan (the Mark), Mordor, Arnor (North Kingdom), Lothlórien

    • Gondor: Minas Tirith (City of Gondor), River Morthond, Dol Amroth, Lossarnach

    • Minas Tirith City: Great Gate, The Citadel, Houses of Healing, Tower of Echthelion (Hall of the Tower)

  • Timeline: Third Age March 15, 3019


Discussion Questions:

    1. What worse evils would have happened that day without Merry and Pippin?
    2. Why was Aragorn unwilling to take charge of the City?
    3. Where did Aragorn learn healing?

 

November 23

Day 327

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter VIII: The Houses of Healing
    *Finish this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, XI: The Houses of Healing


Enrichment Activities:


Discussion Questions:

    1. How did Faramir know Aragorn was the king?
    2. Why has Éowyn lost her hope?
    3. Why is Merry healing so much faster than Éowyn and Faramir?

 
 

November 24

Day 328

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter IX: The Last Debate
    *This chapter will be read over the course of two days, so read about half of it today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, XII: The Last Debate

             *This chapter will be read over the course of two days, so read about half of it today.


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Rohan, Erebor (the Mountain, Lonely Mountain), Mirkwood (the Wood, Great Wood), Lothlórien, Rivendell (Imladris), Gondor, Mordor

    • Gondor: Minas Tirith (the City), Dol Amroth, River Anduin (Great River), Lebennin, South Ithilien, Pelargir, Lamedon, River Ciril, River Ringló, Linhir, River Gilrain, Ethir Anduin 

    • Harrowdale: Paths of the Dead, Dunharrow, Erech (Black Stone) 

    • Arda: Umbar, Harad

    • Minas Tirith Region: Harlond

    • Minas Tirith City: Houses of Healing

  • Timeline: Third Age March 16, 3019

  • Other: Watch “Lord of the Rings - The Grey Company” on the YouTube channel Dork Lords.


Discussion Questions:

    1. Why were Gimli and Legolas so eager to offer the help of their people in rebuilding the City?
    2. Why do Legolas’s people have songs about the green fields in Gondor?
    3. Who were the captives on board the ships?

 

November 25

Day 329

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter IX: The Last Debate
    *Finish this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, XII: The Last Debate

             *Finish this chapter today.


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Gondor, Barad-dûr (Tower), Mordor (Black Land), Isengard (Orthanc), Helm’s Deep (Hornburg), Falls of Rauros, Erebor (the Mountain)

    • Gondor: Minas Tirith (the City), River Anduin, Dol Amroth, Pelargir, Anórien, Osgiliath

    • Harrowdale: Dunharrow

    • Minas Tirith Region: Pelennor Fields, Harlond

    • Minas Tirith City: Great Gate

  • Timeline: Third Age March 16, 3019


Discussion Questions:

    1. Where does Sauron believe the Ring is located?
    2. What would you suggest in this situation?
    3. Is Aragorn’s plan “the greatest jest in all the history of Gondor”?

 
 

November 26

Day 330

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter X: The Black Gate Opens
    *This chapter will be read over the course of two days, so read about half of it today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • None!


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Mordor, Gondor, Ithilien, Harad, Rohan

    • Gondor: Anórien, Cair Andros, Minas Tirith (the City, Tower of the Sun), River Anduin, Ephel Dúath, Emyn Muil, Westfold, Lossarnach

    • Mordor: Morannon (Black Gate), Cirith Gorgor

    • Ithilien: Henneth Annûn

    • Minas Tirith Region: Pelennor Fields, Cross-roads, Osgiliath, Minas Morgul

  • Timeline: Third Age March 18 - 24, 3019


Discussion Questions:

    1. Why were the Nazgûl abroad?
    2. Why are some of the men so afraid?
    3. Was Aragorn right to allow the men an alternative mission?

 

November 27

Day 331

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Five, Chapter X: The Black Gate Opens
    *Finish this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • The War of the Ring: Part Three, XIII: The Black Gate Opens


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

    • Middle-earth: Mordor (Black Land), Rohan, Gondor, The Shire, River Anduin, Misty Mountains, Gap of Rohan, Dol Amroth

    • Mordor: Morannon (Black Gate), Barad-dûr (Dark Tower, Great Tower), Gorgoroth

    • Udûn: Cirith Gorgor, Ered Lithui

    • Arda: Númenor (Westernesse)

  • Timeline: Third Age March 24 - 25, 3019

  • Other: Watch “Who and What Is The MOUTH OF SAURON?” on the YouTube channel The Broken Sword.


Discussion Questions:

    1. How is this encounter a bluff on both sides?
    2. Does Gandalf believe Frodo and Sam are captured?
    3. Why did Gandalf reject Sauron’s terms?

 
 

November 28

Day 332

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Six, Chapter I: The Tower of Cirith Ungol
    *This chapter will be read over the course of three days, so read about a third of it today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • Sauron Defeated: Part One, I: The Story of Frodo and Sam in Mordor


Enrichment Activities:

  • Maps:

  • Timeline: Third Age March 14, 3019


Discussion Questions:

    1. Why didn’t Sauron find Sam when he put on the Ring?
    2. Why did the Ring grow stronger within sight of Mount Doom?
    3. Was Sam wise or foolish to enter the Tower?

 

November 29

Day 333

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Six, Chapter I: The Tower of Cirith Ungol
    *Read the second third of this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • None!


Enrichment Activities:


Discussion Questions:

    1. Why do the Orcs fight each other if they’re all on the same side?
    2. What was Sam’s song about?
    3. What is the source of Sam’s courage?

 
 

November 30

Day 334

Basic Reading: 

    The Return of the King: Book Six, Chapter I: The Tower of Cirith Ungol
    *Finish this chapter today.


Supplementary Reading:

  • Prior Versions:

    • Sauron Defeated: Part One, II: The Tower of Kirith Ungol


Enrichment Activities:


Discussion Questions:

    1. What might Frodo have been afraid of?
    2. Why would Orcs dislike lembas?
    3. Why was the will of the Watchers broken?