A common word — and I would say vital to the imagery of this tale! Along with Blacken and Blackness and Dark, I am spotting some very cool patterns. How about you?

I acknowledge the terrible, hurtful problems with associating “blackness” with spiritual or ethical void. Let the conversation continue. And may I recommend a great book?

Oh, my sweet goodness! This word has the most beautiful entry I’ve ever seen in the OED!!!

Of the darkest colour possible, that of soot, coal, the sky on a moonless night in open country,

“black, adj. and n.” OED Online, Oxford University Press, December 2021, Accessed 2 December 2021.

• 1.007 and immense black boots.
• 2.086 So they got a great black pot,
• 4.019 Clap! Snap! the black crack!
• 5.127 Though he was only a black shadow
• 6.045 and over the black tops of those growing lower down
• 6.066 black in the moonlight,
• 6.078 fat melts, and bones black
• 6.082 and down they came like huge black shadows.
• 6.085 a red twinkle on the black floor;
• 6.087 moonlit spikes of rock sticking out of black shadows.
• 7.022 sometimes he is a huge black bear,
• 7.027 on their deep black bodies
• 7.034 Standing near was a huge man with a thick black beard
• 7.038 with his bushy black eyebrows.
• 7.093 he put Beorn’s big black chair
• 7.102 there black and dark lay boulders stark
• 7.12 till he dreamed a dream of hundreds of black bears
• 7.126 black and strong
• 7.134 or waiting for them like a black
• 7.151 won’t need me to tell you tales of that black sorcerer.
• 8.003 There were black squirrels
• 8.005 so black that you really could see nothing.
• 8.006 and black moths,
• 8.006 black as a top-hat,
• 8.008 and it was black,
• 8.021 and with a piece of stick fended off the little black boat
• 8.042 they were a dark dark velvety black
• 8.043 He looked at the ‘black emperors’
• 8.072 in black smokes.
• 8.076 and his sword-blade was stained black.
• 8.081 when he noticed a place of dense black shadow ahead of him,
• 8.081 black even for that forest,
• 8.129 as evening wore to black night;
• 11.008 and again a black
• 11.021 over the wide lands to the black wall of Mirkwood,
• 11.03 nearly coal black,
• 12.007 in a pale sky barred with black
• 12.029 and black rock-shadows danced.
• 13.008 In fact so black was it
• 13.023 when a black shape swooped at him,
• 14.002 for the breeze was from the black East
• 14.014 with leaping shadows of dense black at their feet.
• 14.022 Black arrow!
• 14.023 The black arrow sped straight from the string,
• 14.028 his black hair hung wet over his face
• 16.007 The sky was black
• 17.04 A black cloud hurried over the sky.
• 17.048 black with a hurrying multitude.
• 17.048 black and red,
• 17.05 The rocks were stained black with goblin blood.
• 17.053 They had only stemmed the first onslaught of the black tide.
• 19.036 in black

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