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The Thain's Book
An encyclopedia of Middle-earth and Numenor


Important Dates
Names & Titles

Vital Statistics:

Race: Men
Date of Birth: 3119 of the Second Age
Date of Death: 3441 of the Second Age
Residences: Romenna in Numenor; Annuminas in Arnor
Parents: Father - Amandil; Mother - name unknown
Siblings: None
Spouse: Name unknown
Children: 2 sons - Isildur and Anarion
Height: About 7 feet, 11 inches
Sword: Narsil
Emblem: White Tree with Seven Stars and a Crown on a black field

Peter McKenzie as Elendil in the New Line film


Elendil was the leader of the survivors of Numenor. He escaped to Middle-earth and together with his sons Isildur and Anarion he founded the realms of Gondor and Arnor. In the War of the Last Alliance, Elendil joined forces with Gil-galad to oppose Sauron, but though they defeated their enemy, they were both killed.

Elendil was born in Numenor in 3119 of the Second Age. His father was Amandil, the Lord of Andunie. The Lords of Andunie were noblemen descended from the Kings of Numenor. They served as councillors to the Kings, but as the Kings became corrupt, the Lords of Andunie remained friendly with the Elves and faithful to the will of the Powers called the Valar.

Numenor had been created by the Valar as a home for the Men who fought alongside the Elves against Morgoth. It was an island in the Sea. Middle-earth lay to the East, and the Undying Lands lay to the West. The Valar forbade the Men of Numenor to sail West to the Undying Lands. Many Numenoreans became resentful of this ban, and they also resented the fact that they were mortal while the Elves were immortal.

In 3262, Ar-Pharazon, the King of Numenor, sailed to Middle-earth and waged war on Sauron. He took Sauron captive and brought him back to Numenor. Sauron went willingly because he wanted to corrupt the Numenoreans and bring about their destruction. He used the Numenoreans' desire for power and immortality to persuade many of them including Ar-Pharazon to worship Morgoth.

Elendil's father Amandil was Ar-Pharazon's councillor. Amandil was dismissed from his position because he rejected Morgoth and remained faithful to the Valar and to Eru, the creator. Elendil and his sons Isildur and Anarion were also among the Faithful, along with a number of other Numenoreans. They lived at Romenna, a haven on the east coast of Numenor.

Sauron convinced Ar-Pharazon that he would become immortal if he went to the Undying Lands, which was a lie. Ar-Pharazon began to prepare a fleet to take the Undying Lands by force. Amandil learned of this and he set sail to the Undying Lands to seek the intervention of the Valar, but he was never seen again.

Elendil was a great mariner like his father. He and the Faithful prepared their own fleet to escape from Numenor. They had nine ships: four were Elendil's, three were Isildur's, and two were Anarion's. They put aboard many prized possessions including the seven palantiri and a seedling of the White Tree.

In 3319, Ar-Pharazon's fleet set out to attack the Undying Lands. The fleet was destroyed and Eru caused the island of Numenor to sink beneath the Sea. Elendil had refused the summons to join Ar-Pharazon's fleet, and he took refuge with the Faithful aboard their own ships. A great wind carried the ships of the Faithful away from Numenor before it was destroyed.

After many days, the ships of the Faithful came to the shores of Middle-earth. Isildur and Anarion landed near the Mouths of the Anduin in the south, while Elendil landed in Lindon in the north. When he came ashore, Elendil said:

"Et Eärello Endorenna utúlien. Sinome maruvan ar Hildinyar tenn' Ambar-metta!"
("Out of the Great Sea to Middle-earth I am come. In this place will I abide, and my heirs, unto the ending of the world.")
The Return of the King: "The Steward and the King," p. 245-46
Elendil was befriended by Gil-galad, the King of the Elves of Lindon. Elendil and his people crossed the River Lune and settled in the lands of Eriador east of Lindon.

The survivors of Numenor in Middle-earth became known as the Dunedain, or Men of the West. In 3320, Elendil and his sons established the realms of Gondor and Arnor. Elendil was the High King of Gondor and Arnor. He lived in Arnor in the north, while Isildur and Anarion lived in the south and jointly ruled Gondor.

Arnor consisted of most of Eriador excluding the Elvish lands of Lindon, Rivendell, and Eregion. Elendil established his capital at Annuminas on the shores of Lake Evendim. There was also a city called Fornost on the North Downs. The Dunedain of the North also settled along the Lune and the Brandywine and in Cardolan in southern Arnor and Rhudaur in eastern Arnor.

The palantiri were used for communication between Gondor and Arnor. There were four in Gondor and three in Arnor. Elendil kept the Stone of Annuminas in the capital. The palantir called the Stone of Amon Sul was kept in the Tower of Amon Sul which the Dunedain built on Weathertop. Gil-galad and the Elves built the three White Towers in the Tower Hills for Elendil. In the tallest tower, Elostirion, was the palantir called the Elendil Stone. This palantir only looked West across the Sea, and Elendil sometimes used it to see Tol Eressea in the Undying Lands.

Elendil bore the Sceptre of Annuminas as the chief mark of royalty of the North-kingdom of Arnor. It was a silver rod that had once belonged to his ancestors, the Lords of Andunie in Numenor. Instead of a crown, Elendil wore a silver fillet set with a white gem called the Elendilmir, which was also an heirloom of Numenor. He had also saved the Ring of Barahir from the destruction of Numenor.

In addition to saving some of the heirlooms of Numenor, Elendil also preserved some of its history. He wrote an account of the Downfall of Numenor, called the Akallabeth, which was kept in the archives of Gondor. He also preserved the story of Aldarion and Erendis from earlier in Numenor's history.

Unknown to the Dunedain, Sauron had also survived and had returned in secret to Mordor. He was angry that the Dunedain had escaped the destruction of Numenor, and he especially hated their leader Elendil. He began to rebuild his power and he gathered a great army including Men from Rhun and Harad. When Mount Doom burst into flame again, the Dunedain realized their enemy had returned.

In 3429, Sauron launched an attack on Gondor. He captured Minas Ithil where Isildur lived. Isildur fled north to Arnor, while Anarion remained behind. Anarion prevented the enemy from taking Osgiliath and Minas Anor and Sauron's forces withdrew to Mordor for the time being.

Elendil consulted with Gil-galad and in 3430 they formed the Last Alliance of Elves and Men. They decided to march to Mordor and wage war against Sauron. Elendil awaited Gil-galad's troops in the Tower of Amon Sul, and together they proceeded to Rivendell in 3431. Their united armies were the greatest force assembled in Middle-earth since the Host of the Valar waged war on Morgoth, and nothing like it was ever seen again.

In 3434, the army of the Last Alliance engaged Sauron's forces in the Battle of Dagorlad on the plain outside the Black Gate of Mordor. Elendil wielded his sword Narsil, which shone with the light of the Sun and the Moon and struck fear in the hearts of the Orcs and Men of Sauron's army. Sauron's forces were defeated and retreated into Mordor. Sauron took refuge in the Dark Tower of Barad-dur, where he was besieged for seven years.

During the Siege of Barad-dur, Sauron sent out many sorties and attacked the siege army from above with fire and with arrows and other projectiles. Many Elves and Men were killed. Anarion died in 3440, his helmet crushed by a stone thrown from Barad-dur.

In 3441, Sauron came down from Barad-dur in an effort to break the siege. He was confronted by Elendil and Gil-galad on the slopes of Mount Doom. Elendil and Gil-galad managed to defeat Sauron, but they were both killed. As Elendil fell, his sword Narsil broke beneath him.

Isildur used the shards of Narsil to cut the One Ring from Sauron's hand. He refused to destroy the Ring, which held much of Sauron's power, and therefore Sauron's spirit survived and went into hiding in the East to rebuild his strength.

Isildur buried his father in a tomb on the hill of Halifirien, which was at the midpoint of the Kingdom of Gondor. The tomb was marked with a black stone bearing the letters lambe, ando, lambe - the consonants of Elendil's name. The tomb remained there until 2510 of the Third Age, when Cirion, the Steward of Gondor, gave the lands west of Halifirien to the Rohirrim. Cirion then moved Elendil's remains to the House of the Kings in Minas Tirith.

Isildur succeeded Elendil as High King of Gondor and Arnor. He intended to dwell in the North as his father had done, and he left Gondor in the care of Anarion's son Meneldil. But on the way to Arnor in the year 2 of the Third Age, Isildur was killed by Orcs in the Gladden Fields, and the One Ring was lost in the waters.

Isildur's youngest son Valandil, who was still a child, succeeded him as King of Arnor. But when Valandil came of age, he did not claim the High Kingship of both Gondor and Arnor. Gondor continued to be ruled by the heirs of Anarion, while Arnor was ruled by the heirs of Isildur. The two Kingdoms became separate and were not reunited until the coming of Aragorn, King Elessar, at the end of the Third Age.

Important Dates:

Second Age:

Birth of Elendil in Numenor.

Birth of Elendil's oldest son Isildur.

Birth of Elendil's younger son Anarion.

Ar-Pharazon brings Sauron to Numenor.

Ar-Pharazon begins building a fleet to attack the Undying Lands.

3310 or 3316
Elendil's father Amandil sails to the Undying Lands seeking the intervention of the Valar but is never seen again.

Ar-Pharazon sets out to attack the Undying Lands in a misguided bid for immortality. His fleet is destroyed and Numenor sinks beneath the Sea. Elendil escapes to Middle-earth with his sons and the rest of the Faithful.

Elendil and his sons found the realms of Gondor and Arnor in Middle-earth. Sauron returns secretly to Mordor.

Sauron attacks Gondor and captures Minas Ithil. Isildur escapes and sails to Arnor. Anarion defends Osgiliath and Minas Anor and drives Sauron back to Mordor.

Elendil and Gil-galad form the Last Alliance of Elves and Men.

The army of the Last Alliance gathers at Rivendell.

The War of the Last Alliance begins. Sauron's forces are defeated in the Battle of Dagorlad. The army of the Last Alliance lays siege to Barad-dur.

Elendil's son Anarion is killed in battle.

Sauron is thrown down by Elendil and Gil-galad, who both die. Isildur cuts the One Ring from Sauron's hand. Sauron's spirit flees his body and goes into hiding. Isildur succeeds his father as High King of Gondor and Arnor. End of the Second Age.

Third Age:

Isildur is slain by Orcs in the Gladden Fields and the One Ring is lost in the waters. From this time on, Arnor is ruled by Isildur's descendants, while Gondor is ruled by Anarion's descendants.

Names & Titles:

The name Elendil means both "Elf-friend" and "Star-lover" in Quenya. The word elen means "star." The Elves were known as the Eldar, or "People of the Stars." The ending ndil means "devotion."

Elendil the Tall
Elendil was the tallest of the survivors of Numenor. He was said to be about 7 feet, 11 inches tall. (UT, p. 285-86)

Elendil the Faithful / Elendil Voronda
Elendil was called the Faithful - or Voronda in Quenya - because he remained faithful to the will of the Valar while most Numenoreans were corrupted. (UT, p. 317)

High King of Gondor and Arnor
Elendil was the High King of both Gondor and Arnor. He was considered to be the first King of each realm. He directly ruled Arnor in the North, while his sons Isildur and Anarion jointly ruled Gondor in the South.


Family tree of Elendil:

Elendil family tree


The Fellowship of the Ring: "The Shadow of the Past," p. 61, 65; "A Knife in the Dark," p. 197, 203; "The Council of Elrond," p. 255-57, 260-61

The Two Towers: "The Palantir," p. 199, 203

The Return of the King: "Minas Tirith," p. 25; "The Battle of the Pelennor Fields," p. 123; "The Steward and the King," p. 245-46

Appendix A of The Lord of the Rings: "The Numenorean Kings," p. 316-18; "The North-kingdom and the Dunedain," p. 320, 322 notes 1 and 2, 323 note 1; "Gondor and the Heirs of Anarion," p. 330

Appendix B of The Lord of the Rings: "The Tale of Years," p. 364-65

Appendix F of The Lord of the Rings: "The Languages and Peoples of the Third Age," p. 407

The Silmarillion: "Akallabeth," p. 271-82; "Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age," p. 290-96, 298, 303

Unfinished Tales: "A Description of Numenor," p. 171-72 note 2; "The Line of Elros," p. 219, 224, 227 note 16; "The Disaster of the Gladden Fields," p. 277, 285-86; "Cirion and Eorl," p. 304-5, 308-1, 316 notes 39 and 40, 317 notes 43 and 44

The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Tale of Years of the Second Age," p. 175-77, 187 note 22; "The Heirs of Elendil," p. 191-93, 196-97

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