Rangers in Middle-earth and Westeros
Both in “The Lord of the Rings” by J. R. R. Tolkien and in “A Song of Ice and Fire” (Game of Thrones) by George R. R. Martin, groups appear who are called “Rangers”.
In Tolkien’s world these are on the one hand the Rangers of the North, the survivors of the extinct Northern Kingdom of Arnor, who became a hidden and wandering people, and on the other hand their southern relatives, the Rangers of Ithilien, an elite unit of the Army of Gondor, who went on expeditions and raided enemies in the abandoned and controversial borderland of Ithilien. In Martin’s world, the Rangers are part of the Night Watch that guards the wall at the northern border of the seven kingdoms of Westeros.
Andreas Zeilinger’s lecture Ranger and Night Watch at MagicCon 4 deals with the history, tasks, similarities and differences of these groups.