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Gwaihir and Farsight the Eagles Symbolism and meaning

If Mark’s Jesus can be seen in C. S. Lewis’ Aslan the lion, perhaps there is something of John’s Jesus in another Narnian character: Farsight the Eagle can fly so high and see so keenly that he can survey all Narnia as he wheels above, from the destruction of the great city of Cair Paravel in the east, to King Tirian hiding up in Lantern Waste (The Last Battle, Puffin/Penguin, 1956, pp. 83–85). Lewis’ eagle is well named; biologists tell us that the proportion of an eagle’s brain devoted to sight is seven times greater than that in humans’. Lewis’ friend, J. R. R. Tolkien, repeats the ancient myths about eagles’ eyesight: ‘The Lord of the eagles of the Misty Mountains had eyes that could look at the sun unblinking, and could see a rabbit moving on the ground a mile below even in the moonlight’ (The Hobbit, Unwin, 1966, p. 96). No wonder Peter Jackson had so much fun animating his wonderful creations of Gwaihir the Windlord and the other huge eagles in his films of The Lord of the Rings. No one who has seen those movies can doubt the majesty and power of these magnificent birds. Elsewhere in Tolkien, these noble creatures are often symbols of the providence of Iluvatar, the Father of All, appearing just in time to rescue the heroes from certain death…

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