Where do you think Middle Earth is?

By: Ansley LaFrance

Introduction

Where is the place we call Middle Earth? France, Colorado, even Scotland but nothing compares to Pennsylvania. After all of these years we have always been wondering where the imagery from the book comes into reality; today we found that the reality is the hands of Pennsylvania. Whether it's the hills, mountains, or even rivers, Pennsylvania is what we call Middle Earth. J.R.R Tolkien has taken his ideas from pencil to paper into real life. Pennsylvania also is know for their mythological creature called gremlins. Gremlins closely resemble dwarfs and are know for being sneaky and stealing.

Argument #1 (land-forms)

One of the main similarities between Pennsylvania and Middle Earth is their land-forms. On page 43 of The Hobbit it uses descriptive words like "the tips of the snow peaks gleamed" to describe the Misty Mountains which means that the top of the mountain had snowy tips that glowed in the light. In Pennsylvania the average snow participation rate is around 32.23-52.3 inches per year. The Mountains usually get lots of snow even in summer so the mountains will usually always have snow. The hills are also very similar; in The Hobbit the grass it always green where Bilbo lives, which is also in Pennsylvania. In The Hobbit, the hills are in the exposition; the book starts off with a description of where the hobbits live. On page 3 it describes the Hobbit houses. The houses aren't "a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat; it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort." This means that hobbit homes are snug and warm; which is similar to the feel in Pennsylvania because their population is only 12.79 million which is very small compared to other places. In P.A everyone knows each other, as does everyone in The Hobbit; they all know each other and you will always have a helping hand.

Argument #2 (mythology)

In Pennsylvania they have mythological creatures called gremlins that closely resemble Bilbo and the dwarfs. Gremlins were created during World War II who are commonly know for sabotaging machinery. It all started when the British Royal Air Force began experiencing un-explainable mechanical problems with their aircraft's. These air pilots blamed their misery on "gremlins" who "so possibly" wreck machinery while no one is looking. This is similar to Bilbo, the hobbit, because he is very quiet; this is why Gandalf made Bilbo a thief. This was stated on page 18, paragraph 1. This myth took off when soldiers would sit in military circles and talk about these destructive creatures. These creatures where created in many battlefronts, so many people would connect gremlins with soldiers. This is similar to The Co. because the dwarfs fought against the dragon in the lonely mountains to gain there treasure back; in a way the gremlins would fight or go against the soldiers to gain their machinery.

Argument #3 (geography)

Land forms aren't the only thing that is similar between Middle Earth and Pennsylvania; they also have places in common. On the top there is a picture of Rivendell where the Co. stayed before they truly started their adventure; and there is also an image of the Fonthill castle in Pennsylvania which looks exactly like Rivendell which is near/in the Lonely Mountains. When they stayed at Rivendell it was stated on page 44, paragraph 2. Then on page 39, paragraph 9 the Co. try to escape from the trolls which is in the forest where they are trying to get their treasure back. In the photo on the bottom there is an image of a forest in Pennsylvania which closely resembles the Forest Bilbo and the dwarfs almost died in by the trolls. Pennsylvania has everything from forest to castles, which comes right out of Tolkien's imagination.

Counterclaim

While others may say their country is Middle Earth there are many reasons to say that Pennsylvania is strait from Tolkien's imagination. Whether it's the castles (Fonthill=Rivendell), land forms (hills, and waterfalls), or the mythology (gremlins=hobbits and dwarfs) Pennsylvania is Middle Earth. They have a castle in P.A that resembles Rivendell in the Lonley Mountains; P.A also has land forms like hills which resembles their houses, and waterfalls in Rivendell that no other country has. Pennsylvania also has gremlins who fight and steal which is similar to the dwarfs. No other country has all of these thing that are strait from J.R.R Tolkien's writing and into reality.

Conclusion

Where is Middle Earth? Is it Scotland, Colorado, Switzerland, or even France; but no, none of these places truly capture the beauty of Middle Earth besides Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania is Middle Earth's exact replica whether it's the mythological history or the physical landscapes; Pennsylvania completely resembles the imagery in Tolkien's book. Others may disagree and say their area is Middle Earth but no other place captures what Middle Earth really looks like. Middle Earth is full of magic and beauty with-in and with-out; whether it's land forms or magic Pennsylvania is Middle Earth.