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Things of Middle-earth

Burial song for Théoden

Type: Songs & Stories

Other Names:
Out of doubt, out of dark, to the day's rising


A song composed by Théoden's minstrel for his funeral, that begins similarly to another song that was sung by Éomer on the Pelennor:
Then the Riders of the King's House upon white horses rode round about the barrow and sang together a song of Théoden Thengel's son that Gléowine his minstrel made, and he made no other song after. The slow voices of the Riders stirred the hearts even of those who did not know the speech of that people; but the words of the song brought a light to the eyes of the folk of the Mark as they heard again afar the thunder of the hooves of the North and the voice of Eorl crying above the battle upon the Field of Celebrant; and the tale of the kings rolled on, and the horn of Helm was loud in the mountains, until the Darkness came and King Théoden arose and rode through the Shadow to the fire, and died in splendour, even as the Sun, returning beyond hope, gleamed upon Mindolluin in the morning.
Out of doubt, out of dark, to the day's rising
he rode singing in the sun, sword unsheathing.
Hope he rekindled, and in hope ended;
over death, over dread, over doom lifted
out of loss, out of life, unto long glory.
But Merry stood at the foot of the green mound, and he wept, and when the song was ended he arose and cried:

'Théoden King...! As a father you were to me, for a little while. Farewell!'

The Return of the King, LoTR Book 6, Ch 5, Many Partings

Contributors: Lyllyn 14Sep03

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