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  1. #1

    Norsemen? Any room for them in Middle Earth?

    Greetings,

    I've been thinking of creating a barbarian-type character, hailing from the snowy wastes. However, I cannot seem to find any snowy regions dominated by the race of man. Is Forochel the only place where one can find such climate? Which of the current character creation options would best befit such a character? Dale? Gondor?
    Is there any room in Middle Earth for norsemen?

    Brgds
    Cam

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cambruyn View Post
    Greetings,

    I've been thinking of creating a barbarian-type character, hailing from the snowy wastes. However, I cannot seem to find any snowy regions dominated by the race of man. Is Forochel the only place where one can find such climate? Which of the current character creation options would best befit such a character? Dale? Gondor?
    Is there any room in Middle Earth for norsemen?
    Middle-earth was full of Northmen. The Rohirrim and Dale-folk were of that sort, so were the Men who lived in the Vales of Anduin, and the Woodmen of Mirkwood. They're not meant to be like comic-book Vikings though, think Beowulf or sagas instead.

    And not Forochel. They're more like the Sami.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Radhruin_EU View Post
    And not Forochel. They're more like the Sami.
    Extremely rude Sami with over-blown opinions of themselves. I hate Forochel, lol.

    Seriously though, the Rohirrim and their society were modeled after Norsemen. They're practically Vikings on horses instead of longboats. If you're looking for a region in the game you can claim to be from I think you're about stuck with 'of Rohan' for now.

  4. #4
    The Rohirrim were much more Ango-Saxon, early English, than Norse. Some think it was a fancy of Tolkiens to take the saxons of old and make them extraordinary horsemen, as it was their lack of cavalry that saw them lose to the Normans at Hastings.

    As for Norse, there is a fair bit of a mix in ME. As the previous poster said, Dale men, Rohirrim and a few others are Northmen, so Dale has more of a eastern feel but with, if the Hobbit films are to be believed, Nordic housing structures along with their naming. (Bard and Brand are both Nordic names)
    The Rohirrim are obviously Saxon, as I said and therefore related to Norse stock, flowing pale hair and swirling patterns, longhalls and a rich spoken word record of their heritage.
    The Dwarves have the most Nordic names. In fact many of the names of Thorin's company come from the Eddas. The magic behind their metal work is a very Norse trait, as well as some of their virtues. Then there is obviously the axes
    I'm actually RP'ing a Variag now. Although a few, Games Workshop to name one, has painted these figures as a cross between Mongols and Samurai I'd strongly disagree. Nor do I agree with lotr wiki saying they are Hunnic. Tolkien only talks of them at Pellinor Fields by referring to them as "Fierce, bearded men wielding axes." They are allied to the men of the east, but different from them. All of this points to me towards the Varangian Guard, whom through the Sagas Tolkien would have been very familiar with. They were norsemen who went to seek employ with the Emperor of Constantinople, becoming his most trusted bodyguards. They were referred to in some tales, (as well as a Turisas song ) as "Axe wielding foreigners."
    Through this I can only picture a group of Northmen who in the early third age went east, swearing their service to the Chieftains and Kings of the Easterlings in return for glory and gold. At least that's how I play mine

    So long story short a typical Norseman might be hard to do, but if you can pick what traits attract you most to that type of character, you have plenty to choose from.
    I hope some of this helps

    Thorvall

  5. #5
    Well, I did find how Rhovanion, Dale and Esgaroth made up what was known as the 'Northmen', but they were exactly that; men of the north. I'm not very knowledgeable about the lore, but from what little I know I can't seem to find and snowy regions in the above lands, which is why I avoided the term northmen and used norsemen instead. I'd want the char to hail from the frozen wastes, harsh lands breading harsh folk and all I can think of are the Lossoth, which don't really seem to fit my profile either...

    Thanks for the replies so far everyone.

    Edit: assuming such a character is impossible to do, would Rhovanion/Dale harbour any barbarian tribes? Wouldn't that make me an unwelcome appearance at the Pony, Snowbourn, ...?
    Last edited by Cambruyn; Apr 07 2014 at 10:35 AM.

  6. #6
    For "Barbaric" peoples maybe a Dunlending? They have a harsher land than the Rohirrim, although not much. Or maybe you could go Lossoth? Alternatively the Hill tribes, such as those is Angmar?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wudugast View Post
    Tolkien only talks of them at Pellinor Fields by referring to them as "Fierce, bearded men wielding axes." They are allied to the men of the east, but different from them. All of this points to me towards the Varangian Guard, whom through the Sagas Tolkien would have been very familiar with. They were norsemen who went to seek employ with the Emperor of Constantinople, becoming his most trusted bodyguards. They were referred to in some tales, (as well as a Turisas song ) as "Axe wielding foreigners."
    'Varyag' was apparently another name for Varangians, so that's evidently exactly where Tolkien got it from. So we really can imagine a people like the Rus, originally Northmen but who'd settled in the East. And as the Varangians were infamous for living up to the stereotype of being bearded, axe-wielding and extremely violent, that would indeed appear to offer the OP the sort of Viking he was after

  8. #8
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    Tolkien doesnt elaborate on the Lossoth all that much. They seem to be more Lapps than Norse.

 

 

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