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How Dense is THE LORD OF THE RINGS’ Legolas?

Across fiction, Elves and their kin are usually given subtle, yet consequential super powers. Sometimes it’s super agility, or dexterity, or eyesight, an enhanced lifespan, or all of the above. The Lord of the Rings‘ blonde and braided hero Legolas has all of these abilities and one more curious elven trait: he’s light enough to walk on top of snow while the rest of the Fellowship trudges waist-deep through it. This has to mean that Legolas is perplexing light. And that’s something we can calculate.

In my latest Because Science, we’re using physics to figure out how far you’d sink into snow if you were as dense as an elf. We start with estimating how far Legolas actually does sink, and then likening that sinking to punching a hole through a material of known strength. If we do the math right — and confirm it with studies on the subject — we can confirm that Legolas would have to be impossibly ethereal.

After you watch the new episode above, check out my last video on whether or not Sandy’s treedome would implode under Bikini Bottom, subscribe to this playlist to stay current with the show, buy a Because Science shirt, mug, hat, or collectible pin (the SURPRISE LIGHTSABER! shirts are in!), and follow me on Twitter to give me a suggestion for the next episode or on Instagram where I’m now posting extra mini-episodes!

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