Autumn is a time of change, and transition. For many cultures, bringing in the first sheaves of grain is a time for celebration. The autumnal solstice is a time for reflection in others. Many of these celebrations and transitions are incorporated into the culture's religious beliefs, and are observed in a ceremonial way. Because of this tradition, the theme for September and October is Rituals.
Sometimes a ritual can be steeped in tradition, such as when Eowyn offered the parting cup before the riders left for Helm's Deep, or when the rangers of Ithilien stood facing to face the West before eating their evening meal. Sometimes they may be new, such a Frodo hosting a party to observe Bilbo's birthday each year after Bilbo disappeared from the Long Expected Party. Sometimes they involve an entire community coming together, perhaps in a ceremonial celebration of a successful hunt, or they can be an intimate as a wife assisting her husband in donning his armor before he rides to battle, in the hope of ensuring his safe return.
What other rituals do you think might have been observed in Middle Earth? Would a new member of the citadel guard get their new armor and helms from the Steward himself in a long practiced ceremony? How would Elvish fear be joined in marriage? Might a newborn Eoarlingas be formally welcomed to their community in a ceremonial way?
And the winners are:
A New Tradition by Kaylee Arafinwiel 2nd place
Greyhavens by Karri 1st place
The Incident at the Red Heron by ForestWren 2nd place
If you would like to illustrate any of these stories, you can take part in our special all-year-round artistic challenge!
The Teitho archive does not allow reviews, but as soon as the stories are posted somewhere else online, we will update the stories with a link. Follow us on facebook, tumblr or twitter to get a notification about this!
And this is the winner and participation banner for this challenge:
You can use it if you create anything inspired by it, even if it's too late to enter it into the contest!
Happy reading and congratulations to the winners!
Mirach, Carawyn, Sian22 and Lotrfan