The Descendants of Durin

From a rec.arts.books.tolkien posting dated 2 October 1995.

A reply to a question about how many of Aule's first Dwarves were women.

Six of the thirteen were female. Silmarillion p. 44 hardback makes reference to the Seven Fathers of the Dwarves; Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien #212 makes it explicit. Iluvatar "commanded Aule to lay the fathers of the Dwarves severally in deep places, each with his mate, save Durin the eldest who had none."

...Which makes the matter of Durin's lineage somewhat confusing, doesn't it? Return of the King Appendix A shows a list of Durin's descendants, but it doesn't say how the line makes it from Durin the Deathless to Durin VI of the Third Age. Did Durin the Deathless take a mate from one of the other Dwarven lines? Did he die childless, but have his line considered "continued" when Durin II was born to another family? Did he adopt? Did he have sex with a Hobbit or something? Did he just do what Aule did, and sit down in a smithy somewhere and build his descendant out of raw materials? Is Durin II a clone? Was Durin the Deathless, the Father of the Dwarves, the inspiration for all those Frankenstein movies?

I'm all confused about this. :)

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