Dram of Evil/Seed of Goodness

For Love of Creation

2. Author's Notes

This is from a very long story that I'm writing, but I thought that the meaning of the chapter stood alone well enough to warrant using it as an entry on a website challenge. Unfortunately, I couldn't remove the references to his spouse and still have it make sense, and in this story his spouse is the Maia Ilmare.

I know most people just see Annatar/Sauron as the representation of evil that he was in the Third Age, but Professor Tolkien set up the groundwork for Sauron's fall from grace, from being among the Ainur to wanting to rule Middle-earth. One of the things that stuck out for me was something Tolkien said in Letters of Tolkien:

‘At the beginning of the Second Age he [Sauron] was still beautiful to look at, or could still assume a beautiful visible shape – and was not indeed wholly evil, not unless all “reformers” who want to hurry up with “reconstruction” and “reorganization” are wholly evil, even before pride and the lust to exert their will eat them up.”

In another letter, he states that when Sauron first approached Gil-galad in Lindon, and later the elves of Eregion, that he did have 'fair intentions'. Sauron started out intending to help the Elves rebuild the damage done by Morgoth in the First Age, but his pride got the better of him. He thought his intelligence and skills were superior to that of the Elves, so it was more expedient for him to just take over and do everything himself, because everyone else was obviously too stupid to take care of themselves or Middle-earth. Or maybe that's what he told himself in the beginning, but by the end of the Second Age (or maybe even earlier than that) his pride and lust to exert his will had eaten him up and he was wholly evil.

He reminds me of a quotation from Mary Wollstonecraft, ‘No man chooses evil because it is evil; he only mistakes it for happiness, the good he seeks’. Evil and good are sometimes no more than a matter of perspective. To paraphrase Hamlet, there is nothing good or bad, but that thinking makes it so. There are times when what’s evil depends upon which side of the gun you’re on. Okay, I could go on and on about this, so I’ll stop and just end by saying that Annatar/Sauron is a fascinating villain.

This is a work of fan fiction, written because the author has an abiding love for the works of J R R Tolkien. The characters, settings, places, and languages used in this work are the property of the Tolkien Estate, Tolkien Enterprises, and possibly New Line Cinema, except for certain original characters who belong to the author of the said work. The author will not receive any money or other remuneration for presenting the work on this archive site. The work is the intellectual property of the author, is available solely for the enjoyment of Henneth Annûn Story Archive readers, and may not be copied or redistributed by any means without the explicit written consent of the author.


In Challenges

Story Information

Author: Andreth

Status: Reviewed

Completion: Complete

Rating: General

Last Updated: 08/13/04

Original Post: 09/30/03

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