“For thus is it spoken: Oft hope is born when all is forlorn.”

—Legolas, The Return of the King

“Every day that passes is a precious day lost.”

– Frodo, The Two Towers

“You must either go through or give up your quest. And I am not going to allow you to back out now, Mr. Baggins.”

– Gandalf

“Dangerous or not, a real sunrise is mighty welcome.”

– Frodo

“The hands of the King are the hands of healing.”

– Gandalf

“Despair is only for those who see the end beyond all doubt.”

– Gandalf

The word eucatastrophe (good catastrophe) was coined by J.R.R. Tolkien to describe what he believed was the essence and highest function of fairy-stories.

It is the sudden, unexpected joyous turn.

Tolkien explains, “In such stories when the sudden ‘turn’ comes we get a piercing glimpse of joy, and heart’s desire, that for a moment passes outside the frame, rends indeed the very web of story, and lets a gleam come through” (‘On Fairy-Stories’, 61).

Our latest content:

Déagol’s Baked Fish

Déagol’s Baked Fish

Since we are discovering the Splendor of the Lands that inspired Middle-earth, I thought a recipe influenced by Scandinavian cooking would be appropriate. You might want to accompany your fish with green vegetables, such as cabbage or green beans; some pickled beets on the side would also be lovely. This particular recipe showed up in…

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Appreciating Beauty & Wonder in Tolkien’s Legendarium

Appreciating Beauty & Wonder in Tolkien’s Legendarium

Hello friends of the Eucatastrophe fellowship! We’re in for a great July. Our theme is “appreciating beauty & wonder in Tolkien’s legendarium.” We’ve got a great slate of content each week. Look forward to an exceptional recipe and great content focusing on the contribution of Dr. Lisa Coutras. Lisa’s work leads us into deeper and…

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Tolkien’s Far-reaching Hope

Tolkien’s Far-reaching Hope

John Eldredge John Eldredge is an author, a counselor, and a teacher. He is also president of Wild at Heart, a ministry devoted to helping people discover the heart of God, recover their own hearts in God’s love, and learn to live in God’s Kingdom. John grew up in the suburbs of Los Angeles (which…

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Frodos Dreme

Frodos Dreme

HOPE is the theme for June, and I have an easy, summery recipe to share with you. The simple, delicious taste of a beautiful fresh strawberry and pure heavy cream—two ingredients combine in a bowl to produce an almost spiritual, or even Platonic, representation of what food should be. Near the end of Peter Jackson’s…

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A Star of Hope

A Star of Hope

An exceptionally lovely moment of hope returning unexpectedly is found in The Return of the King, in the chapter “The Land of Shadow.” Frodo and Sam have passed into Mordor, wearily and with great struggle, after a brief respite and replenishment in Ithilien. Sam, keeping up his spirits the best he can, has encouraged Frodo—who…

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Mad Hope

Mad Hope

Hope is manifested in many forms. One moment, hope is presented as a nagging insistence that cannot be dismissed, or perhaps a wild rush of emotion coupled with fear, or maybe a shying away from the notion that it could be too could to be true. Or it might come in its strongest form—the unbridled…

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Despair or Folly?

Despair or Folly?

Despair? ‘Despair or folly,’ said Gandalf. ‘It is not despair, for despair is only for those who see the end beyond all doubt.’ How can we dismiss such words from one of the Wise? We can because there was so much at stake. The rediscovery of the One Ring was a great, great burden for…

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Eucatastrophe: The Ascension of Boromir

Eucatastrophe: The Ascension of Boromir

The Lord of The Rings is filled with innumerable examples of eucatastrophe. Just as Evil looks to strike the fatal blow, the fate of Middle-earth is saved by a small moment of courage, love, and kindness for friends and home, or extraordinary sacrifice from ordinary folk. The Black is truly mighty in Tolkien’s secondary creation,…

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Call for entries – July 2020

Call for entries – July 2020

July’s theme is: Appreciating Beauty & Wonder In anticipation of our July content, the essay question is: In your estimation, what scene, dialog between characters, or some other special event in Tolkien’s Legendarium impresses you as most wonderfully beautiful? What happened? How does this happening in Middle-earth inspire you toward appreciation of beauty and wonder…

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As an author, Tolkien was a creator—or, as he would put it, a “sub-creator.”

 
Tolkien created a fully-imagined world. Middle-earth has a depth of diverse cultures, histories, geography, peoples, characters, family trees, languages, and calendars unrivaled in 20th- and 21st-century literature. Although Tolkien stated that The Lord of the Rings is not an allegory, he did say there’s always an abundance of applicability available for readers to use in their Present-earth lives and historical context.
 

Eucatastrophe.com strives to suggest new vistas of potential applicability for Tolkien fans to explore and enjoy, taking you deeper into Tolkien’s Middle-earth mythology.