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Lord of the Rings Science

The Climate of Middle-Earth 163

Posted by Soulskill
from the climate-science-everyone-can-get-behind dept.
sciencehabit writes "One does not simply model the climate of Mordor; unless, of course, you are the University of Bristol's Dan Lunt, who has created a climate simulation of J. R. R. Tolkien's Middle-earth from The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Using supercomputers and a model originally developed by the U.K. Met Office, his study compares Middle-earth's climate with those of our (modern) and the dinosaur's (Late Cretaceous) worlds. The Middle-earth model reveals that the Shire — home to the Hobbits — would enjoy weather much like England's East Midlands, with an average temperature of 7C and about 61 cm of rainfall each year. An epic journey to Mount Doom, however, would see a shift in climate, with the subtropical Mordor region being more like Los Angeles or western Texas." The full academic paper is available in English, Elvish, and Dwarfish.
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The Climate of Middle-Earth

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  • by cervesaebraciator (2352888) on Saturday December 07, 2013 @03:27PM (#45628131)
    It's not translated. It's just using elvish and dwarfish scripts.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 07, 2013 @05:27PM (#45628841)

    A lot of Tolkien's tengwar writing was English, but it was actual English writing, where the ‘t’ tengwa stood for the ‘t’ sound and the ‘a’ tehta stood for the ‘a’ sound.
    But even a glancing look* at TFA shows that they just selected the text and changed the font. If it had been transliterated English, that would have gotten them some points in my book, but this...
    * There are no tehta (vowel diacritics) anywhere, nor any full-mode vowel characters; that should be a hint even to those who cannot read tengwar.

  • by Chris Mattern (191822) on Saturday December 07, 2013 @07:34PM (#45629495)

    On the other hand, Mordor is a barren wasteland, riddled with fire and ash and dust, the very air you breathe is a poisonous fume.... from all that volcanic discharge from Mount Doom.

    The Plains of Gorgoroth that Frodo and Sam struggled across fits that description, yes. But Nurn, around the Sea of Nurnen in the southeast was quite fertile (though not pleasant--no place in Morder was pleasant) and raised abundant crops. After all, Sauron's armies had to be fed somehow.

You can tell how far we have to go, when FORTRAN is the language of supercomputers. -- Steven Feiner