In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

A place for pics and tutorials on making Soft Kit (clothing and accessories like buckles and cloak pins).

Moderators: caedmon, Greg

Cimrandir
Silent Watcher over the Peaceful Lands
Posts: 183
Joined: Thu Oct 07, 2010 2:44 am

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Cimrandir » Wed Jul 15, 2020 2:53 pm

Wow, that alternate Eärendil star looks very cool. I do like the curved lines which fit with the arches motif of Númenor and the enclosing circle makes for a nice brooch look to my eye. And Sennufurs tomb does fit that aesthetic, doesn’t it?
User avatar
Iodo
Haeropada
Posts: 1047
Joined: Mon Sep 25, 2017 5:58 pm
Location: North west england UK

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Iodo » Wed Jul 15, 2020 8:10 pm

As most of you know, I'm not an expert on Tolkien law and don't spend nearly enough time reading so this isn't grounded in research at all, it's just a thought I had while reading this fascinating thread:

All the examples here are beautiful and I personally can imagine every design mentioned here on a rangers cloak, and they're all recognizable as a "silver star broach", that got me thinking. Given that rangers typically lead a dangerous life wandering the wilds quite a way from the place they call home and often travel alone. Also that something used as a cloak pin is on the outside of a rangers garb, gets taken on and off often, in the dark, above a forest floor or even on snow, and everyone knows how easy it is to loose things in snow. The silver star broach is valuable so it's likely the ranger in question would be careful and try very hard not to loose it, but in a lifetime wandering the wilds of middle earth I'm finding it very hard to believe that the star broach a young ranger was given by they're mentor would be the same star broach they had when they grew old and retired to live at a farm homestead. A cloak pin is useful so it's unlikely the ranger would do without it in the event of it's loss until he was back with his own people and able to get a "standard issue" star broach. He could of course, just buy any old broach or pin from the next trader he meets but then he won't be recognized as a ranger, so he might ask a local silver-smith to "make a star broach" while he's staying at the inn. This thread proves that there are many interpretations of the statement "a silver star broach", and the possibility of loss and remake, or making a copy, then a copy of that, or even personal taste, introduces a strong possibility of design variations

I'm thinking out of the box here, but perhaps to solve this problem we have to abandon the modern, earth based tradition of a logo that is always identical in color, shape and aspect ratio to every other reproduction of it, and instead look at historical tokens and symbols. The Viking Thor's hammer is one example, there's many historical finds, every single one is different in pattern, proportion, size, even sometimes in shape and yet they're all recognizable as Thor's hammer. Another, slightly more recent example is the Scottish Jacobite, or Highland Army who I think used various forms of Saint Andrew's Cross as a symbol to identify they're ranks but other than that, wore what ever clothing they happened to own. And there's many more examples through history of armies and nations using nothing more than a single color, in what ever way the individual feels like, to identify their troops

so maybe it's more plausible that the middle earth silver star broach ends up with lot's of different interpretations, shapes, styles etc... and that the thing that makes a ranger recognizable isn't the exact design of the star but the things Tolkien is specific on; the material it's made from and the way it's worn by the ranger?
Last edited by Iodo on Wed Jul 15, 2020 8:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Gimli: It's true you don't see many Dwarf-women. And in fact, they are so alike in voice and appearance, that they are often mistaken for Dwarf-men.
Aragorn: It's the beards.
Cimrandir
Silent Watcher over the Peaceful Lands
Posts: 183
Joined: Thu Oct 07, 2010 2:44 am

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Cimrandir » Wed Jul 15, 2020 8:23 pm

That’s an excellent point Iodo. Consistent design are very much a modern trend and there wasn’t much of a uniform look in historical evidence. Personally, I like the different interpretations of the Star and consider that more faithful to the spirit of the text. I was curious about the number of points because I would imagine that part of it would actually be fairly standard in a cultural sort of way. So while the design might be different the general look of the star would be culturally cohesive.
My feeling is though that the Star wasn’t worn daily or openly due to the shininess while moving through the forest. I like Greg’s theory of the Bocksten style cloak with the star brooch only being used in time of war. That makes a lot of sense to me and would restrict using the star from a daily use clasp.
User avatar
Iodo
Haeropada
Posts: 1047
Joined: Mon Sep 25, 2017 5:58 pm
Location: North west england UK

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Iodo » Wed Jul 15, 2020 8:32 pm

Cimrandir wrote:That’s an excellent point Iodo.

Thank you :P

Cimrandir wrote:My feeling is though that the Star wasn’t worn daily or openly due to the shininess while moving through the forest

because I don't portray a ranger I haven't really ever given this much thought, it's a long time since I read the text although my interpretation when I did, was that silver didn't mean shiny, just silver as a metal, well used and with a bit of tarnish, not enough to make in unrecognizable as silver but maybe enough to stop it standing out like a glistening white star in the dark?
Gimli: It's true you don't see many Dwarf-women. And in fact, they are so alike in voice and appearance, that they are often mistaken for Dwarf-men.
Aragorn: It's the beards.
Cimrandir
Silent Watcher over the Peaceful Lands
Posts: 183
Joined: Thu Oct 07, 2010 2:44 am

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Cimrandir » Wed Jul 15, 2020 8:41 pm

Ah, I hadn’t really thought about it that way and had considered that the silver was the exception to the “no shiny.” That does make sense though. Probably more sense. :lol:
User avatar
Iodo
Haeropada
Posts: 1047
Joined: Mon Sep 25, 2017 5:58 pm
Location: North west england UK

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Iodo » Wed Jul 15, 2020 8:48 pm

Yeah, it did make more sense to me as well but I'm not sure, there might be a reference specifically to it being shiny in the text? I think someone else is would be more qualified to answer that question :lol:
Gimli: It's true you don't see many Dwarf-women. And in fact, they are so alike in voice and appearance, that they are often mistaken for Dwarf-men.
Aragorn: It's the beards.
Cimrandir
Silent Watcher over the Peaceful Lands
Posts: 183
Joined: Thu Oct 07, 2010 2:44 am

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Cimrandir » Wed Jul 15, 2020 8:54 pm

There was no gleam of stone or gold, nor any fair thing in all their gear and harness: nor did their riders bear any badge or token, save only that each cloak was pinned upon the left shoulder by a brooch of silver shaped like a rayed star."


Looks like it’s left up to your personal interpretation. :D
User avatar
Greg
Urush bithî 'nKi ya-nam bawâb
Posts: 4091
Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2008 8:50 pm
Location: Eriador; Central Indiana

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Greg » Wed Jul 15, 2020 9:01 pm

The most book-accurate information I have regarding the wearing and use of the Star-Brooch can be found in my article from a few years back in Edge of the Wild on the use of the Bocksten-patterned cloak for the Dunedain. In it, though I don't mention it, the idea that the brooch could be lost is addressed, because the bocksten cloak functions completely without the pin at all, because the shoulder is held together by a stitched seam and the pin is only used to hold the cloak open. In practice, the pin isn't even entirely needed for this, as throwing a quiver/burden strap over the cloak when tossed over the shoulder does the job well too.

For this reason (and the obvious importance of the event when the Dunedain finally bring them out and wear them enroute to war) I think they were largely a cultural and aesthetic token rather than intended to hold the cloak for any sort of support. Good thing, too, because supporting a cloak on a pin would bring it rather close to the neck, which could be problematic with a sharp and pointed star brooch. Perhaps instead it was used as a badge flashed at certain establishments to get the bearer a free meal and room for a night at need, etc., but almost never worn openly lest the Ranger's anonymity and general "outside the community" vibe be lost.
Now the sword shall come from under the cloak.
User avatar
Manveruon
Thangailhir
Posts: 2084
Joined: Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:11 am
Location: Littleton, CO
Contact:

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Manveruon » Fri Jul 31, 2020 11:18 pm

I keep meaning to come back in here and thoroughly read through all these fantastic replies, but I’ve had the devil of a time making myself actually sit down and do it. Soon, hopefully! In the mean time however...

...Something pretty amazing came in the mail yesterday! :D

A few weeks back, Eofor offered me an opportunity to become the new owner of one of the solid silver, hand-crafted Dúnedain star brooches he and his local group commissioned some years ago, and as I was somewhat frustrated with my efforts to find a good local source I jumped at the chance. In short: I AM COMPLETELY BLOWN AWAY! This is a MASTERPIECE.

And what’s more, it came with a hand-written letter, complete with hand-drawn illuminations and written completely in a runic alphabet. I’m having a little trouble deciphering it so far because the runes don’t quite match any one single alphabet I have looked up so far, be it historical or Tolkien-based (perhaps they are a combination?), but I’m having a lot of fun trying to piece it together! (So far I have been able to make out “Manveruon,” but that’s about it, haha.)

Anyway, a thousand times thank-you to Eofor! This is an artifact I shall cherish in perpetuity!

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image
User avatar
TaylorSteiner
Amrod Rhandir
Posts: 439
Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:31 pm
Location: Great Falls Montana
Contact:

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby TaylorSteiner » Sat Aug 01, 2020 12:51 am

Wow!
Frodo lives!
User avatar
Iodo
Haeropada
Posts: 1047
Joined: Mon Sep 25, 2017 5:58 pm
Location: North west england UK

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Iodo » Sat Aug 01, 2020 6:08 pm

That looks amazing :P

those runes seem very similar to the ones that Tolkien uses to represent dwarvish in The Hobbit - I think they are Anglo-Saxon? I can read quite a lot of it. Just a clue: U and V use the same symbol and C and K are very similar
Gimli: It's true you don't see many Dwarf-women. And in fact, they are so alike in voice and appearance, that they are often mistaken for Dwarf-men.
Aragorn: It's the beards.
User avatar
Manveruon
Thangailhir
Posts: 2084
Joined: Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:11 am
Location: Littleton, CO
Contact:

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Manveruon » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:14 pm

Iodo wrote:That looks amazing :P

those runes seem very similar to the ones that Tolkien uses to represent dwarvish in The Hobbit - I think they are Anglo-Saxon? I can read quite a lot of it. Just a clue: U and V use the same symbol and C and K are very similar


Yes! That was my thought as well! And as it happens, Eofor has confirmed that they are indeed an Anglo Saxon variant called Futhorc!
User avatar
theowl
Vendor
Posts: 306
Joined: Sun Aug 28, 2011 7:15 am
Location: California
Contact:

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby theowl » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:28 pm

That's awesome. what's the stone?
User avatar
Eofor
Dúnadan
Posts: 81
Joined: Sun Mar 22, 2020 11:40 am

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Eofor » Sun Aug 02, 2020 12:06 am

I’m relieved that the package made it to you safe and sound with the current state of postage in the world.
I’m also relieved that you like the star but I was reasonably confident that you would, like I said in our correspondence
I don't quite know how to put it but they are really beautiful in person, like you would choke your best friend Déagol to have it beautiful. When you see and hold it you just feel that you have an actual piece of middle earth.

It didn’t feel quite right to send it off in a plain sterile box - unfortunately I’m not the artist you are Manveruon but I can try to paint a picture with words.
Both of ours are now with their new keepers and we couldn't think of better custodians, wear it with pride Ranger!
For seven days without eating or sleeping the new king sat, until he stood and cried "This cannot be borne!"!
User avatar
Eofor
Dúnadan
Posts: 81
Joined: Sun Mar 22, 2020 11:40 am

Re: In Search of the Many-Rayed Star

Postby Eofor » Sun Aug 02, 2020 12:13 am

Iodo wrote:That looks amazing :P

those runes seem very similar to the ones that Tolkien uses to represent dwarvish in The Hobbit - I think they are Anglo-Saxon? I can read quite a lot of it. Just a clue: U and V use the same symbol and C and K are very similar


They are indeed, although I left out a few of the more complex characters to make for easier translation.

theowl wrote:That's awesome. what's the stone?


The stone is amber - One of only four organic gemstones and the only one to come from trees, Heimir, the original owner chose it to symbolize his connection and love of nature.
For seven days without eating or sleeping the new king sat, until he stood and cried "This cannot be borne!"!

Return to “Soft Kit”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests