An encyclopedia of Middle-earth and Numenor
See the family trees of Finwe and Thingol at the bottom of the page.
Aegnor had golden hair that stood up stiffly from his head and eyes that glowed like flame in battle. Aegnor became a fierce warrior and was feared by his enemies, but he was also generous and noble of spirit.
In 1495, Morogth stole the Silmarils and Feanor urged the Noldor to pursue him to Middle-earth. Aegnor and Angrod sided with their friend Fingon who wanted to go after Morgoth, but the brothers did not speak against their father Finarfin who advised the Noldor to be cautious. In the end, Aegnor and his father and siblings were among the Noldor who set out for Middle-earth.
Feanor tried to obtain ships from the Teleri and when they refused he attacked them and took the ships. Mandos appeared before the Noldor and warned them that they would be exiled from the Undying Lands and face great suffering if they did not turn back and repent. Aegnor and his brothers chose to continue out of friendship with Fingon and Turgon, and Galadriel also went onward, but Finarfin remained behind. Although Aegnor and his siblings had not taken part in the Kinslaying they still fell under the Doom of Mandos.
There were not enough ships to take them all to Middle-earth, so Feanor abandoned those he considered disloyal. Aegnor and his siblings were among those left behind and they had to continue the journey on foot across the Grinding Ice. They reached Middle-earth at the beginning of the First Age.
Aegnor and Angrod settled in Dorthonion. They were vassals of their older brother Finrod who dwelled in Nargothrond. They kept watch over the great plain of Ard-galen which stretched north to Morgoth's stronghold Angband. The highlands were barren and few Elves lived there with them. But between 330 and 380, a number of Men of the House of Beor came to live in Dorthonion.
Aegnor met a woman of the House of Beor named Andreth and they fell in love. But at that time there had never been a marriage between the races of Elves and Men. Because Elves were immortal and Men were mortal, Aegnor realized that his time with Andreth would be brief and that as she aged he would remain young which would cause her shame. Also, according to custom, Elves did not marry or have children during time of war, and Aegnor feared his relationship with Andreth would cause him to abandon his responsibility to stay and defend Dorthonion against Morgoth.
Aegnor parted from Andreth on the shores of Aeluin and they did not see each other again. Aegnor decided that he would never marry anyone of his own race either.
Fingolfin, the High King of the Noldor, wanted to make a preemptive strike on Morgoth while he was besieged in Angband. Aegnor and Angrod sided with Fingolfin because of their proximity to the frontier, but the other chieftains of the Noldor were against the plan and it came to nothing.
In 455, Morgoth broke the Siege of Angband and the Battle of Sudden Flame began. Rivers of fire came down from Angband across Ard-galen and scorched the northern slopes of Dorthonion. Aegnor and Angrod were killed during the assault. The spirits of Elves who were killed went to the Halls of Mandos to be judged, and after a time they could be restored to their bodily forms to live again. But Finrod had told Andreth that Aegnor would choose to remain in the Halls of Mandos until the end of time because of his love for her.
The name Aegnor means "Sharp Flame" or "Fell Fire." In Quenya, his mother-name was Aikanáro from aika meaning "sharp" or "fell, terrible, dire" (though not evil) and nár meaning "flame, fire" along with the masculine ending -o. Also spelled Aikanár.
Aegnor was a Sindarinized form of this name though it was not proper Sindarin. The word aeg means "point" in Sindarin; there was no Sindarin equivalent meaning "fell, terrible, dire" though aeg would have been its form if it existed. The Sindarin word for "fire" was naur.
Aegnor's father-name was Ambaráto in Quenya from amba meaning "up, upwards" and arta meaning "exalted, lofty." The Sindarin form would have been Amrod but this was deemed too close to the name of his brother Angrod. (There was also a son of Feanor named Amrod.)
See the family trees of Finwe and Thingol below.
The Silmarillion: "Of Eldamar," p. 61; "Of the Flight of the Noldor," p. 84; "Of Beleriand and Its Realms," p. 119-20; "Of the Noldor in Beleriand," p. 128-30; "Of the Ruin of Beleriand," p. 150-51; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entry for nar
Unfinished Tales: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn," p. 250
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for AM2 and AYAK
The History of Middle-earth, vol. X, Morgoth's Ring: "The Annals of Aman," p. 93, 106; "Athrabeth Finrod Ah Andreth," p. 323-26, 335, 357 note 8
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 38, 52; "The Later Quenta Silmarillion," p. 183 (map), 195, 219, 227 §15
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Shibboleth of Feanor," p. 346-47, 353-54, 363 note 44, 363-64 note 45
In 538, the Havens of Sirion were attacked by the sons of Feanor. Earendil's wife Elwing escaped into the Sea with the Silmaril. She was transformed into a white bird and she flew to find Vingilot. Earendil decided to try once more to find the Undying Lands and in 542 he finally succeeded. The ship was guided through the Enchanted Isles and the Shadowy Seas by the power of the Silmaril.
Vingilot was anchored in the Bay of Eldamar. Earendil ordered his wife and the mariners to remain aboard so they would not incur the wrath of the Valar. Elwing disobeyed and leapt ashore, but Aerandir, Erellont, and Falathar remained with the ship. The Valar agreed to Earendil's request, but it was decided that Earendil and Elwing would remain in the Undying Lands.
Aerandir, Erellont, and Falathar were given a new boat by Eonwe - the herald of Manwe - and the Valar sent them back East to Middle-earth with a strong wind. Vingilot was set in the night sky and, with Earendil and the Silmaril at its prow, it became the Star of Earendil.
The name Aerandir is composed of the Sindarin words aer meaning "sea" and randir meaning "wanderer, pilgrim." The meaning of the name Erellont is unclear; its elements could be derived from er meaning "one, alone" and lunt meaning "ship." The name Falathar is composed of the Sindarin words falas meaning "shore" and thar meaning "across, beyond."
The Silmarillion: "Of the Voyage of Earendil," p. 246-48, 250; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entries for er, falas, ran, thar
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for LUT, PHAL, RAN, THAR
Throughout the Second Age, Lothlorien was at peace, and few outsiders even knew of its existence. At some point, the Elves of Lothlorien encountered Galadriel, who was then living in Eregion on the other side of the Misty Mountains. She and her husband Celeborn may have come to live in Lothlorien for a short time after the fall of Eregion in 1697.
In 3434, Amdir responded to a summons from Gil-galad to join the fight against Sauron in the War of the Last Alliance. Amdir's forces were valiant, but they were poorly equipped for battle. At the Battle of Dagorlad, they were cut off from their allies and were driven into the marshland west of the Black Gate. Amdir and more than half his troops were killed. The marshland became known as the Dead Marshes because of the corpses of Elves, Men, and Orcs who perished there.
Sauron was defeated in 3441. Amdir's son Amroth succeeded him as the King of Lothlorien.
The name Amdír means "looking up" from am meaning "up" and dir from tir meaning "watch, look." The word amdir was used by the Elves to signify "hope based on reason" (as opposed to estel meaning "hope based on trust").
In another version of the story, he was called Malgalad, which contains the element mal meaning "gold" and galad meaning "radiant."
Unfinished Tales: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn," p. 240, 243-44, 258
The Silmarillion: "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entries for kal, mal, and tir
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entry for AM2
The History of Middle-earth, vol. X, Morgoth's Ring: "Athrabeth Finrod Ah Andreth," p. 320 (meaning of Amdir)
Amroth was of Sindarin descent, though most of the Elves of Lothlorien were Silvan Elves, or Wood-elves. He fell in love with a Silvan Elf named Nimrodel. Nimrodel loved Amroth, but she refused to marry him because she believed that the coming of outsiders like the Sindar had exposed Lothlorien to the dangers of Middle-earth. She lived apart from the other Elves near a river that later bore her name, and she maintained the speech and customs of the Silvan Elves.
Amroth lived on a flet - a platform in the branches of a tree - on a hill that came to be called Cerin Amroth. Flets were used by the Elves of Lothlorien as look-out posts. It was most likely Amroth who began the custom of dwelling on flets, and he may have gotten the idea from Nimrodel.
Around 1100 of the Third Age, it was learned that an evil power had built the stronghold of Dol Guldur across the Anduin from Lothlorien. This power became known as the Necromancer, although it was in fact Sauron. Galadriel and Celeborn came to Lothlorien to investigate. They remained for a time, but eventually they left.
In 1980, the Dwarves of Khazad-dum encountered the Balrog, which had lurked beneath the mountains since the end of the First Age. The Dwarves abandoned Khazad-dum and it became a place of evil known as Moria. In 1981, Nimrodel fled from Lothlorien, and Amroth pursued her. He caught up with Nimrodel in the eaves of Fangorn Forest, and she promised to marry him if he could bring her to a land of peace. They agreed to sail together to the Undying Lands.
Amroth and Nimrodel traveled south with a number of Elves from Lothlorien. Their destination was the Elf-haven of Edhellond on the Bay of Belfalas from which ships sailed into the West. On the journey, Nimrodel became lost in the White Mountains. Amroth convinced the Elves on the last remaining ship to wait for her. In the autumn, a great storm came from the north and ship was swept out into the Bay.
Amroth had been sleeping, and the ship was far from the coast when he awoke and realized what had happened. He jumped overboard and tried to swim back to shore to find Nimrodel, but he drowned. Galadriel and Celeborn returned to Lothlorien and became the rulers of the Elves that remained there.
Later, the city of Dol Amroth on the coast near Edhellond was named for Amroth. It was said by the Elves of Lothlorien that his voice could sometimes be heard on the wind that came up the Anduin from the Sea.
In one version of the story (UT, p. 234), Amroth was said to be the son of Galadriel and Celeborn, but this seems to have been a rejected idea.
The name Amroth means "up climber, high climber" from am or amba meaning "up" and rath meaning "climb." The name is not a pure Sindarin form but was probably influenced by the Silvan language. It was said to be a nickname given to him because he lived on a flet in a tree.
The Fellowship of the Ring: "Lothlorien," p. 353-55, 365
The Return of the King: "The Last Debate," p. 148
Appendix F of The Lord of the Rings: "The Languages and Peoples of the Third Age," p. 405 note 1
Unfinished Tales: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn," p. 234, 240-46, 255 note 16, 257-58; "Cirion and Eorl," p. 316 note 39
In 472, a number of Elves from Mithrim fought in the Battle of Unnumbered Tears but Annael was the only one of them who survived. Later that year, the Elves of Mithrim gave shelter to a pregnant woman named Rian whose husband Huor had not returned from the battle. Annael told Rian that Huor had been killed and that his body probably lay under the burial mound of Haudh-en-Ndengin.
Rian gave birth to a son named Tuor. She asked the Elves to take care of Tuor and she went to Haudh-en-Ndengin and died. Annael became Tuor's foster father.
After the battle, Morgoth gave Hithlum to the Easterlings and many Orcs came there as well. Some Elves were captured by the Orcs and were taken as slaves to the mines of Angband. Annael led his people into hiding in the caves of Androth but they continued to face danger and hardship.
Around 488, Annael decided to lead his people away from Mithrim. His plan was to escape Hithlum through the secret passage called the Gate of the Noldor and then head south to the Havens of Sirion. Many of the women and children had already been sent there to safety.
Tuor, who was sixteen years old at the time, agreed to accompany Annael. Tuor hoped to find Turgon, the High King of the Noldor, who had escaped from the Battle of Unnumbered Tears with the help of Tuor's father Huor. Annael told Tuor that Turgon's realm of Gondolin was hidden but he might meet some of Turgon's people at the Havens of Sirion.
But when the Elves left Androth they were attacked by a great force of Easterlings and Orcs. Tuor was captured by the Easterling chieftain Lorgan. Annael and many of his people managed to escape and they joined Cirdan's people who lived at the Havens of Sirion and on the Isle of Balar.
Tuor eventually escaped from Lorgan. He found the Gate of the Noldor that Annael had described and he was led to Gondolin by an Elf named Voronwe. After the fall of Gondolin in 510, Tuor and his wife Idril and son Earendil fled to the Havens of Sirion so Tuor may have been reunited with Annael at that time.
The meaning of Annael is unknown. The first element could be from anna meaning "give" in Sindarin. The second element could be el meaning "star."
The Silmarillion: "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin," p. 238
Unfinished Tales: "Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin," p. 17-21, 25, 56 note 31
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for ANA1 and EL
The History of Middle-earth, vol. IX, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 79, 136-37
Aredhel had pale skin and dark hair, and she always wore silver and white. She was called Ar-Feiniel, the White Lady of the Noldor. Aredhel was tall, strong, and fearless, and she enjoyed riding and hunting. She often rode out with the sons of Feanor, but she was not romantically involved with any of them.
In 1495, many of the Noldor were persuaded by Feanor to pursue Morgoth to Middle-earth in order to recover the Silmarils. Aredhel set out with her father and brothers but their mother remained behind. But when there were not enough ships to carry all the Noldor, Feanor abandoned Fingolfin's family and others he considered disloyal. Fingolfin led his followers on an arduous trek across the Grinding Ice, and they arrived in Middle-earth at the start of the First Age.
Aredhel settled with her brother Turgon in the halls of Vinyamar in the coastal region of Nevrast. In the year 53, Turgon found the hidden valley of Tumladen and began the construction of Gondolin which was completed in 116. Aredhel relocated to Gondolin with Turgon and his people.
But in 316, after 200 years, Aredhel became restless within the confines of the Encircling Mountains. She wanted to ride freely in the open lands and forests of Middle-earth. Turgon agreed to let her go visit their brother Fingon in Hithlum and he sent three escorts with her.
Aredhel had other plans. At the Ford of Brithiach, she announced her intention to visit the sons of Feanor in East Beleriand instead, and her escorts reluctantly followed. The march-wardens of Doriath refused to allow her to pass through their land because King Thingol distrusted most of the Noldor, especially those who were friends of the sons of Feanor.
Aredhel was forced to travel eastward through the dangerous valley of Nan Dungortheb, which was inhabited by Great Spiders. She became separated from her escorts who eventually returned to Gondolin with the news that Aredhel was lost. Aredhel continued on her own to Himlad where Celegorm and Curufin dwelled, but they were away from home. Their people welcomed her and she stayed there for a while.
After a time, Aredhel became restless again, and she wandered south over the Celon into the dark woods of Nan Elmoth. There she was seen by Eol the Dark Elf who lived deep in the forest, alone except for a few silent servants. Eol desired Aredhel and he used his enchantments to lure her to his house.
Aredhel remained in Nan Elmoth and married Eol. She was not entirely unwilling, but she was not completely happy either. She travelled far and wide with Eol in the dark of night, but he would not allow her to go out in daylight. He also forbade her to contact the sons of Feanor or any other Noldor, whom he blamed for the return of Morgoth and the wars that had followed.
In 320, Aredhel gave birth to a son. She secretly named him Lomion, meaning "Son of Twilight" in Quenya - the language of the Noldor which Eol would not let her speak. When the boy turned twelve, Eol named him Maeglin. Eol trained Maeglin to be a smith, and they frequently travelled together to the Dwarf-cities of Belegost and Nogrod, leaving Aredhel on her own.
Maeglin liked listening to his mother's stories about her people and their deeds. He was especially interested to learn that his uncle Turgon had no male heir. Aredhel became nostalgic for Gondolin, and Maeglin convinced her to run away from Nan Elmoth.
At midsummer in the year 400, while Eol was at a feast in Nogrod, Aredhel and Maeglin rode through Nan Dungortheb to the Hidden Way into Gondolin. Turgon rejoiced to see his sister again and he welcomed Maeglin. But Eol had pursued them and found the Hidden Way. At Aredhel's request, Eol was not slain but was brought before Turgon.
It was Turgon's policy that anyone who found the hidden realm of Gondolin must remain there forever. Eol refused even though the alternative was death, and he was determined to take his son with him. Eol threw a javelin at Maeglin, but Aredhel jumped in front of him and was hit instead.
Aredhel asked Turgon to have mercy on Eol, but her wound was poisoned and she died during the night. Eol was executed the next day. Maeglin remained in Gondolin but he later betrayed the city to Morgoth which led to its downfall.
The name Aredhel means "Noble Elf" in Sindarin from ar meaning "high, noble, royal" and edhel meaning "Elf."
She was called Ar-Feiniel meaning "Noble White Lady" in Sindarin from fein or fain meaning "white" and the feminine ending -iel. (This name was used in The Silmarillion, but Christopher Tolkien notes in HoME XI, p. 318, that it may have been a rejected idea replaced by Aredhel.)
Also called Aredhel the White, the White Lady of the Noldor, and the White Lady of Gondolin.
In earlier stories she was called Isfin subsequently replaced by the Quenya Írissë - apparently derived from írë meaning "desire" plus a feminine ending - and the Sindarin Írith or Íreth.
See the family tree of Finwe below.
The Silmarillion: "Of Eldamar," p. 60-61; "Maeglin," p. passim; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entries for ar(a) and edhel
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entry for SPAN
The History of Middle-earth, vol. X, Morgoth's Ring: "The Annals of Aman," p. 102 note 8 and 9, 106; "The Later Quenta Silmarillion," p. 177, 182
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 47-48, 121-23; "Maeglin," passim
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Shibboleth of Feanor," p. 345, 362-63 note 39
Beleg was the greatest woodsman of his time. He lived in lodges in the forest near Doriath's northern borders. Doriath was a woodland realm surrounded by a protective barrier called the Girdle of Melian which was maintained by Thingol's wife. But Morgoth's servants roamed outside the borders, particularly on the northern marches, and Beleg and his march-wardens fought those who came near Doriath.
Around 458 of the First Age, a legion of Orcs came through the Pass of Sirion and approached the Forest of Brethil which bordered Doriath. Beleg and a company of Elves joined forces with Halmir and the Men of the Forest of Brethil to ambush and defeat the Orcs. For a time afterwards, the threat of Orcs in that region was reduced.
Around 466, the Girdle of Melian was breached by Carcaroth, the Wolf of Angband, who had swallowed the Silmaril that Beren and Luthien stole from Morgoth. Beleg joined the Hunting of the Wolf along with Thingol, Beren, Mablung, and Huan the Hound. Carcaroth mortally wounded Beren before being killed by Huan, who also perished.
Thingol did not send an army to the Battle of Unnumbered Tears in 472 because of his feud with the sons of Feanor who coveted the Silmaril in his possession. But Beleg and Mablung wanted to fight so they were given permission by Thingol as long as they joined the forces of Fingon instead of the sons of Feanor. The battle was a great defeat for the Elves and Men of Beleriand but Beleg and Mablung both survived.
In early 473, Beleg was hunting in the woods of Doriath when he found an eight-year-old boy named Turin and his escorts Gethron and Grithnir. Turin had been sent to Doriath by his mother Morwen after his father Hurin did not return from the Battle of Unnumbered Tears. Turin and his companions could not get past the Girdle of Melian and they were lost, cold and hungry. Beleg took them to his lodge and sent word to Thingol, who permitted Turin to enter Doriath.
Beleg taught Turin the skills of a woodsman and he trained him in archery and swordsmanship. When Turin turned seventeen, he joined the march-wardens. Turin was second only to Beleg in skill at arms. Beleg and Turin fought alongside one another and became close friends.
Around 484, Turin fought with an Elf named Saeros who fell to his death while Turin chased him. Thingol intended to banish Turin from Doriath, but Beleg learned that Nellas - an Elf-maiden who lived in the woods - had seen Saeros attack Turin first. Beleg brough Nellas to Menegroth to bear witness on Turin's behalf and Thingol decided to pardon him, but Turin had already fled.
Beleg promised to find Turin. Thingol allowed Beleg to choose a sword from his armories and Beleg selected Anglachel though Melian warned him there was malice in the blade from its maker, Eol the Dark Elf. After Beleg left Doriath, Morgoth's servants became bolder in their attacks on the neighboring areas without Beleg and Turin to stop them.
Beleg searched for nearly a year until he heard news of Turin from some Woodmen south of the River Teiglin. Beleg learned that Turin was leading a band of outlaws and he tracked them though Turin hid their trail using the skills Beleg had taught him. Beleg found the outlaws' lair while Turin was away and an outlaw named Androg convinced the others to tie Beleg to a tree without food and water.
After two days, Turin returned and freed Beleg. He refused to go back to Doriath even though Thingol had pardoned him. Beleg's heart forewarned him that a shadow lay before them if they did not return, but out of friendship to Turin he agreed to stay with him. But first Beleg wanted to deal with an invasion of Orcs in Dimbar near Doriath's northern borders. Turin would not accompany him but instead said they would meet again at Amon Rudh.
Beleg stopped in Doriath to report to Thingol and he received a gift of lembas from Melian. He rejoined the march-wardens and together they drove the Orcs from Dimbar. In the winter, Beleg set out to find Turin again.
Turin and his Men established a lair on Amon Rudh in a cave belonging to Mim the Petty-Dwarf. In the winter, there was a snowstorm and many of the Men became hungry and sick. Beleg arrived with supplies and he shared lembas with the Men and worked to heal the sick. But both Androg and Mim were jealous and resentful of the bond between Turin and Beleg.
In the spring of the next year, there were increased incursions by Orcs into the lands around the Sirion. Turin and Beleg led their company to drive out any Orcs that came near Amon Rudh. During one foray, Androg was wounded near death but Beleg was able to heal him.
Turin wore the Dragon-helm which Beleg had brought to him and Beleg wielded Belthronding. The surrounding lands became known as the Land of Bow and Helm. Other Elves and Men came to join the Two Captains, but despite their success Beleg was uneasy.
Around 489, Mim betrayed the location of Turin's stronghold to Morgoth's Orcs. According to one version of the story, Mim was largely motivated by his hatred and jealousy of Beleg and he asked the Orcs to leave Beleg for him to kill but to spare Turin.
The Orcs attacked Amon Rudh and Turin and Beleg retreated with some of their Men up a hidden stair to the hilltop. The Men were killed and Turin was taken prisoner. By one account, Beleg was tied up and Mim was about to slay him when Androg - who had been mortally wounded - drove Mim away and freed Beleg before he died.
Beleg tracked the Orcs through the Pass of Anach into Taur-nu-Fuin, a place of dark enchantment. There Beleg found Gwindor of Nargothrond who had been captured during the Battle of Unnumbered Tears but had escaped from Angband. Beleg and Gwindor caught up to Turin's captors on the slopes leading down to the desert of Anfauglith. The Orcs made camp and celebrated and fell into a drunken stupor.
Beleg shot four wolf-sentinels and entered the camp. He and Gwindor carried Turin to a thicket a short distance away. Beleg used Anglachel to cut Turin's bonds but he accidentally pricked Turin's foot. Turin awoke to see a figure standing over him with a sword and he seized Anglachel and slew Beleg. In a flash of lightning, Turin saw Beleg's face and realized the terrible thing he had done.
Thus ended Beleg Strongbow, truest of friends, greatest in skill of all that harboured in the woods of Beleriand in the Elder Days, at the hand of him whom he most loved; and that grief was graven on the face of Turin and never faded.Turin and Gwindor buried Beleg in a shallow grave with his bow Belthronding. Turin wrote a song called Laer Cu Beleg, the "Song of the Great Bow." Turin kept Anglachel and renamed it Gurthang, and after many further tragedies he used the sword to kill himself.
The Silmarillion: "Of Turin Turambar," p. 208
The name Beleg means "mighty" in Sindarin. He was called Beleg Strongbow or Beleg Cúthalion from cû meaning "bow" and thalion meaning "strong, dauntless."
The Silmarillion: "Of the Ruin of Beleriand," p. 157; "Of Beren and Luthien," p. 185-86; "Of the Fifth Battle," p. 189; "Of Turin Turambar," p. 199-209, 225; Index, entry for Beleg; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entries for beleg, cu, and thalion
Unfinished Tales: "Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin," p. 37, 51 note 2; "Narn I Hin Hurin," p. 73-74, 77, 79-80, 82-85, 90-96, 134, 145, 147 note 11, 147-48 note 12, 151-54
The Children of Hurin: "The Departure of Turin," p. 75-76; "Turin in Doriath," p. 81, 86, 91-97; "Turin among the Outlaws," p. 107-20; "Of Mim the Dwarf," p. 122, 139-40; "The Land of Bow and Helm," passim; "The Death of Beleg," passim; "Turin in Nargothrond," p. 159; "The Death of Turin," p. 256; "Appendix (2) - The Composition of the Text," p. 286-87
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for BEL, KU3 and STALAG
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 56-57, 63, 81-83, 102, 126, 133, 138, 140, 160
Caranthir had a harsh temperament and was quick to anger. He had a ruddy complexion and black hair, and he was called Caranthir the Dark.
Feanor made the Silmarils, but in 1495 of the Years of the Trees they were stolen by Morgoth who took them to Middle-earth. Feanor vowed to retrieve the Silmarils at all costs, and Caranthir and his brothers swore the Oath of Feanor to fulfill their father's wishes. They set out for Middle-earth with many of the Noldor.
The Teleri refused to give Feanor ships, so Feanor took them by force and many Elves on both sides were killed. Caranthir and his brothers took part in the Kinslaying. Afterwards, Mandos appeared and warned the Noldor that if they did not turn back they would be exiled. Some including Feanor's brother Finarfin complied, but Feanor and his sons and many others continued onward. When there were not enough ships to take all of them to Middle-earth, Feanor abandoned those whom he considered disloyal including his other brother Fingolfin.
Feanor and his followers landed in Middle-earth in 1497. Soon afterwards, they were attacked at their camp in Mithrim by Morgoth's forces. The Elves were victorious in the Battle-under-Stars, but Feanor tried to attack Morgoth's stronghold of Angband and he was mortally wounded. Before he died, Feanor made his sons promise to uphold their oath to retrieve the Silmarils.
Fingolfin and his people crossed the Grinding Ice to Middle-earth at the beginning of the First Age. In the year 7, the Noldor held a council. Finarfin's son Angrod brought a message from King Thingol of Doriath warning the Noldor not to encroach on any of the lands where his people, the Sindar, lived. Caranthir disliked the sons of Finarfin and he lost his temper at Angrod, accusing him of carrying tales to Thingol. Many of the Noldor were dismayed by Caranthir's outburst and feared it was an indication that the sons of Feanor would be difficult to deal with.
Maedhros decided that he and his brothers should leave Mithrim and settle in East Beleriand. Caranthir established his realm in Thargelion east of the Gelion at the foot of the Blue Mountains. This region, bordered on the south by the Ascar, also came to be called Dor Caranthir or the Land of Caranthir. Caranthir built a fortress on the western slopes of Mount Rerir and his people dwelled around the shores of Lake Helevorn.
In the year 150, Caranthir's people first climbed the Blue Mountains to look eastward. There they encountered the Dwarves who had two great mountain cities, Belegost and Nogrod. Caranthir was scornful of the Dwarves and their stunted appearance, but he recognized the importance of an alliance with them. The Dwarves and the Noldor were skilled craftsmen and they traded with each other. Caranthir's people acquired iron and increased their armaments. Caranthir controlled trade with the rest of Beleriand and he became wealthy.
In 312, a group of Men called the Haladin crossed the Blue Mountains and settled in the southern part of Thargelion. Caranthir permitted them to dwell there and the Elves ignored them for the most part. But in 375, Morgoth sent Orcs to attack the Haladin. The Men were besieged behind a stockade at the juncture of the Ascar and the Gelion. Just as the Orcs breached the stockade, Caranthir arrived with an army and defeated them. Caranthir offered their leader Haleth lands further north under his protection but she refused and relocated her people across the Gelion.
During the Battle of Sudden Flame in 455, an army led by Glaurung invaded East Beleriand. Orcs captured the fortress on Mount Rerir and defiled Lake Helevorn and ravaged Thargelion. Caranthir and the remnants of his people retreated southward and joined his brothers Amrod and Amras on Amon Ereb.
In 463, Men called Easterlings entered Beleriand. One group led by Ulfang made an alliance with Caranthir, but it was later learned that Ulfang was secretly in league with Morgoth at the time. At the Battle of Unnumbered Tears in 472, Ulfang's sons Uldor, Ulfast, and Ulwarth betrayed Caranthir and switched sides on the battlefield, leading to a crushing defeat for the Elves and their allies.
At Yule of 506-7, the sons of Feanor attacked Doriath in an attempt to obtain the Silmaril that was in the possession of Thingol's heir Dior. They killed Dior and his wife Nimloth, but Caranthir and his brothers Celegorm and Curufin were also slain. Some Elves of Doriath fled to safety with Dior's daughter Elwing and they took the Silmaril with them.
The name Caranthir means "red face" in Sindarin from caran meaning "red" and thîr meaning "face" in reference to his ruddy complexion. His mother-name - given to him by Nerdanel - was the Quenya form Carnistir. His father-name was Morifinwë meaning "Dark Finwë" in Quenya because he had dark hair like his grandfather Finwë. The short form of this name was Moryo. Also called Caranthir the Dark.
See the family tree of Finwe below.
The Silmarillion: "Of Eldamar," p. 60; "Of the Flight of the Noldor," p. 83-90; "Of the Return of the Noldor," p. 112-13; "Of Beleriand and Its Realms," p. 124; "Of the Noldor in Beleriand," p. 129; "Of Maeglin," p. 132; "Of the Coming of Men into the West," p. 143, 145-46; "Of the Ruin of Beleriand," p. 153, 157; "Of the Ruin of Doriath," p. 236
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 33, 45-46, 53, 61, 64; "The Tale of Years," 348, 351
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "Of Dwarves and Men," p. 318; "The Shibboleth of Feanor," p. 353
In 2509, Celebrian was journeying over the Misty Mountains through the Redhorn Gate to her parents' home in Lothlorien when she was captured by Orcs. She received a poisoned wound and was tormented by the Orcs before her sons found her and rescued her. Elrond was able to heal her physical wounds, but Celebrian remained troubled by her memories and fear and she could no longer find joy in Middle-earth. She left Middle-earth in 2510 and sailed over the Sea to the Undying Lands.
Celebrian's sons spent many years hunting Orcs in retribution for their mother's torment. It is not known whether Elladan and Elrohir chose to remain in Middle-earth or to go to the Undying Lands. Celebrian's daughter Arwen chose mortality and lived in Middle-earth with her husband Aragorn until her death. Elrond remained in Middle-earth until after the fall of Sauron. In September of 3021 he sailed over the Sea to join his wife.
In the first edition of The Lord of the Rings, the marriage date of Celebrian and Elrond is given as the year 100 of the Third Age.
Celebrian is mentioned in "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn" in Unfinished Tales. However, since there are contradictory versions of this tale the information cannot be considered entirely reliable. In one version, Celebrian had a brother named Amroth, and Galadriel brought her two children to dwell in Lothlorien between 1350 and 1400 of the Second Age. Elrond is said to have met Celebrian when she visited Rivendell around 1701 of the Second Age, and he fell in love with her then but did not tell her of his feelings. Celebrian is then said to have accompanied her parents to live in Belfalas.
Celebrian means "silver queen." The word celeb means "silver." The ending rian means "crown gift" from rî meaning "crown" and anna meaning "gift."
See the family trees of Finwe and Thingol below.
The Fellowship of the Ring: "Many Meetings," p. 239
Appendix A of The Lord of the Rings: "The North-kingdom and the Dunedain," p. 323
Appendix B of The Lord of the Rings: "The Tale of Years," p. 366, 368
Unfinished Tales: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn," p. 234, 237, 240, 244, 251
The Silmarillion: "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entry for CELEB
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entry for RIG
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Making of Appendix A," p. 264
The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien: Letter #345 (meaning of Celebrian)
One source states that Celebrimbor accompanied his father and grandfather when Feanor led the Noldor to Middle-earth to retrieve the Silmarils from Morgoth. Celebrimbor's mother (whose name is unknown) is said to have refused to take part in the rebellion and remained behind in the Undying Lands. Although Celebrimbor followed his father, he was said to be more like his mother in temperament. (HoME XII, p. 318)
Curufin first lived with his brother Celegorm in Himlad, but they were forced to flee after the Battle of Sudden Flame in the year 455 of the First Age. They then went to Nargothrond, the stronghold of their cousin Finrod Felagund, and Celebrimbor dwelled there with them.
In 465, Finrod left Nargothrond and accompanied Beren on a quest to steal a Silmaril from Morgoth. Celegorm and Curufin learned that Finrod and Beren had been captured by Morgoth's lieutenant Sauron, but they did not try to rescue them because they wanted to gain power for themselves. When it was later learned that Finrod had died in prison, Celegorm and Curufin were exiled from Nargothrond.
Celebrimbor had been friends with Finrod, and he renounced the treachery of his father and uncle. He remained in Nargothrond, which was then ruled by Finrod's brother Orodreth. Nargothrond was destroyed in 495 and Orodreth was slain. Celebrimbor's whereabouts during this time and for the remainder of the First Age are not known.
After the War of Wrath at the end of the First Age, many Elves returned to the Undying Lands, but Celebrimbor was among those who remained. He migrated eastward with a group of Noldorin Elves including Finrod's sister Galadriel and her husband Celeborn. In 750 of the Second Age, they settled in Eregion at the foot of the Misty Mountains. They chose this location because Celebrimbor had learned that the Dwarves of Khazad-dum had found a precious metal which Celebrimbor named mithril.
The Elves of Eregion built the city of Ost-in-Edhil, and there they established the House of the Mirdain, or jewel-smiths. They became known as the Gwaith-i-Mirdain, or People of the Jewel-smiths, and they made many beautiful things. Celebrimbor was the greatest of the Elven-smiths.
Celebrimbor befriended the Dwarves of Khazad-dum, and they shared skills and secrets with each other. The Dwarves adapted the rune system of the Elves for their own use, while Celebrimbor became highly skilled in working with mithril.
Celebrimbor was especially close friends with the Dwarf-craftsman Narvi. Narvi made the Doors of Durin at the West-gate of Khazad-dum, and Celebrimbor drew a secret inscription on the doors with a substance called ithildin - derived from mithril - which could only be seen in starlight and moonlight once activated by touch and a special incantation.
Celebrimbor may also have made the Elessar, which was a clear green stone set in a silver brooch shaped like an eagle. He gave the Elessar to Galadriel, who later gave it to Aragorn. According to one story, Celebrimbor was in love with Galadriel (UT, p. 250). In a revised version of this story, Celebrimbor is said to have also made an earlier Elessar in the First Age which ended up with Earendil. But these stories are from a different account of Celebrimbor's history in which he was a craftsman of Gondolin. (See note below.)
In 1200, Sauron came to Eregion in a fair disguise, calling himself Annatar, Lord of Gifts. He claimed to be an emissary of the Valar, and he promised to teach the Elves many things. The Elven-smiths greatly desired to improve their skills and craftsmanship. Celebrimbor in particular coveted the skills and fame of his grandfather Feanor. He was not corrupted by Sauron, but he was deceived by his lies.
According to one version of the story, Celebrimbor was convinced by Sauron to revolt against Galadriel, who left Eregion and went to Lothlorien between 1350 and 1400 (UT, p. 237). However, there is no mention of this revolt elsewhere.
Under Sauron's instruction, Celebrimbor and the Elven-smiths began to forge the Rings of Power around 1500. They made the Seven Rings and the Nine Rings with Sauron's help. Around 1590, Celebrimbor made the Three Rings - Narya, Nenya, and Vilya - by himself.
Around 1600, Sauron forged the One Ring to rule the other Rings of Power. Even the Three Rings were subject to the One because Celebrimbor had made them using skills that he learned from Sauron. When Sauron put on the One Ring, Celebrimbor realized that he had been deceived.
Celebrimbor consulted with Galadriel about what to do with the Three Rings. They could not bring themselves to destroy them, so they agreed that the Three should be hidden. In 1693, Celebrimbor gave Nenya to Galadriel and he sent Narya and Vilya to Gil-galad in Lindon.
Saruon was enraged and he declared war against the Elves. His forces besieged Eregion and broke through the defenses in 1697. Celebrimbor confronted Sauron on the steps of the House of the Mirdain, but he was captured. Sauron found the Nine Rings and other treasures in the House of the Mirdain. He torutured Celebrimbor until he revealed the whereabouts of the Seven Rings, but Celebrimor refused to tell Sauron where the Three Rings were hidden.
Celebrimbor was put to death and his body was mounted on a pole which was borne as a banner before Sauron's forces as they continued their assault on the Elves. Sauron was eventually defeated in 1701 and he returned to Mordor.
Celebrimbor is most commonly known as the son of Curufin and grandson of Feanor. However, there are other versions of his story. In one he was described as a Noldorin craftsman who worked for Turgon in Gondolin. In another version Celebrimbor was said to be a Sindarin Elf who was descended from Daeron, the originator of the runes used by the Elves. In yet another tale, he was a Telerin Elf who accompanied Celeborn from the Undying Lands to Middle-earth - though this is from a version of the story of Celeborn and Galadriel that does not fit in well with other tales.
The name Celebrimbor means "hand of silver" or "silver fist." The element celebrim is from celebrin meaning "like silver" and the ending bor is from paur meaning "fist," implying a hand curled around a tool rather than a combative gesture.
He was also called Celebrimbor of the Silver Grasp and was referred to as the Lord of Eregion.
See the family tree of Finwe below.
The Fellowship of the Ring: "The Council of Elrond," p. 255, 266; "A Journey in the Dark," p. 318
Appendix B of The Lord of the Rings: "The Tale of Years," p. 363-64
Appendix E of The Lord of the Rings: "Writing and Spelling," p. 397
Unfinished Tales: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn," p. 235-38, 244, 250-52, 254 note 11
The Silmarillion: "Of Beren and Luthien," p. 176; "Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age," p. 286, 288; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entry for celeb
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Tale of Years of the Second Age," p. 179; "Of Dwarves and Men," p. 297, 317-19 note 7
Daeron developed his alphabet by 1300 of the Years of the Trees, and around 1350 he made revisions and improvements. The Alphabet of Daeron - or Certhas Daeron - was a system of writing with runes to represent the sounds of the Sindarin language. The runes - or Cirth - were angular letters that were suitable for carving into stone or wood.
The Elves of Doriath used the Certhas Daeron mainly for inscriptions rather than recording information. Daeron's alphabet was not widely used among the Elves of Middle-earth. Instead, they used the Tengwar created by Feanor which was more suited for writing with pen and paper.
But the Dwarves of Belegost and Nogrod adopted the Certhas Daeron, and from them the use of runes spread to other races including Men and Orcs. In the Second Age, the Elves of Eregion used an expanded version called the Angerthas Daeron, while the the Dwarves of Khazad-dum developed the Angerthas Moria.
In the year 20 of the First Age, Daeron and Mablung were sent by Thingol to represent Doriath at the Feast of Reuniting. This was a meeting of the different groups of Elves in Beleriand convened by Fingolfin, the High King of the Noldor.
Daeron was in love with Luthien, the daughter of Thingol and Melian. Luthien did not return his feelings though she considered Daeron to be a friend. Daeron's music was inspired by Luthien, and he wrote songs for her to sing and dance to.
In the summer of 465, Daeron saw Luthien secretly meeting with a Man named Beren in the woods of Doriath. Daeron told Thingol, who sent Beren on a seemingly impossible quest to steal a Silmaril from Morgoth in exchange for Luthien's hand.
Luthien did not realize that Daeron had betrayed her, so she asked Daeron to help her follow Beren. But Daeron revealed her plans to Thingol who imprisoned his daughter atop the tree named Hirilorn. Luthien escaped and went after Beren.
Daeron fell into despair and he left Doriath to find Luthien. He eventually crossed the Blue Mountains into eastern Middle-earth where he dwelled for a time beside dark waters and sang laments about Luthien. His ultimate fate is not known.
The name Daeron is said to be derived from the Sindarin word daer meaning "large, great" (VT 42, p. 11) and the masculine agental ending -on.
The Silmarillion: "Of the Sindar," p. 95; "Of the Return of the Noldor," p. 113; "Of Beren and Luthien," p. 166, 172, 183; "Of the Voyage of Earendil," p. 254
The Fellowship of the Ring: "A Journey in the Dark," p. 334
Appendix E of The Lord of the Rings: "Writing and Spelling," p. 395, 397, 401-4
The History of Middle-earth, vol. X, Morgoth's Ring: "The Annals of Aman," p. 106
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 13-14, 20, 34, 65-66, 69, 110
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Appendix on Languages," p. 75-76; "Of Dwarves and Men," p. 297-98, 319-20 note 8
Unfinished Tales: "Narn I Hin Hurin," p. 77, 147 note 8
"The Rivers and Beacon-hills of Gondor," by J.R.R. Tolkien, edited by Carl F. Hostetter, commentary by Christopher Tolkien, in Vinyar Tengwar #42, July 2001, p. 11 (derivation of Daeron)
A Gateway to Sindarin by David Salo, p. 165, 346
Around 1115, the Elves came to the great heights of the Misty Mountains. Some of the Teleri refused to continue the Great Journey to the Undying Lands. Lenwe led a group of them southward down the Anduin and Denethor accompanied them. They became known as the Nandor.
The Nandor spread out through the Vales of the Anduin and by the Bay of Belfalas, and some including Denethor journeyed north into Eriador. They loved to live near water and they were the most knowledgable of all the Elves about plants and animals.
Although Morgoth was in captivity, his Orcs and other evil creatures began to come down from the North. The Nandor were not well-armed and they were unable to defend themselves. Denethor learned that Olwe's brother Thingol had established a strong and peaceful realm in Beleriand, so he gathered many of the Nandor and led them across the Blue Mountains in 1350. They settled in Ossiriand, the Land of Seven Rivers.
Morgoth returned to Middle-earth and in 1497 he launched an attack on the Elves of Beleriand. Denethor and his people responded to Thingol's request for aid and they fought in the First Battle though they were still lightly armed. Denethor was surrounded on Amon Ereb and he was slain along with many of his kin. Morgoth's forces were driven out of eastern Beleriand by Thingol.
Afterwards, some of Denethor's people joined Thingol in Doriath but others returned to Ossiriand. They were called the Green-elves because they lived in the woods and wore green clothing. They did not take a new king after Denethor and they remained in seclusion and were seldom seen by others.
The name Denethor means "lithe and lank" from dene meaning "thin and strong, pliant, lithe" and thara meaning "tall (or long) and slender." There were also two Stewards of Gondor in the Third Age named Denethor I and Denethor II.
The Silmarillion: "Of the Coming of the Elves," p. 54; "Of the Sindar," p. 94-96; "Of Beleriand and Its Realms," p. 122
The History of Middle-earth, vol. X, Morgoth's Ring: "The Annals of Aman," p. 83, 93, 102 note 8, 104; "The Later Quenta Silmarillion," p. 164, 169
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 13, 15-16, 109-12; "Quendi and Eldar," p. 384-85, 412 note 17, 419 note 17
Thingol had required Beren to steal a Silmaril from Morgoth in order to win Luthien's hand in marriage. The quest was successful, but Beren died as a result. Luthien also died in order to follow Beren to the Halls of Mandos, where she pled on their behalf. Beren and Luthien were returned to life on the condition that Luthien would become mortal and both she and Beren would eventually die again.
Beren and Luthien settled on the island of Tol Galen in the River Adurant on the southern border of Ossiriand in 469. Their son Dior was born there the next year.
In 497, Dior married an Elf of Doriath named Nimloth, who was the niece of Celeborn. Dior and Nimloth lived in a house near Lanthir Lamath, a waterfall in the Adurant. Their twin sons Elured and Elurin were born in the year 500, and their daughter Elwing was born in 503.
That same year in 503, word came to Ossiriand that Thingol had been killed by Dwarves from Nogrod who coveted the Silmaril. Beren and Dior led a company of Green-elves to waylay the Dwarves at Sarn Athrad. Most of the Dwarves were slain and the rest were dealt with by the Ents on Mount Dolmed. Beren took the Silmaril which was set in the Nauglamir and gave it to Luthien.
Dior succeeded his grandfather Thingol as King of Doriath, and he relocated to the halls of Menegroth with his family. He was welcomed by the Elves of Doriath and he hoped to reestablish their realm.
In autumn of 503, a messenger from Ossiriand brought the Silmaril to Doriath, and Dior realized that Beren and Luthien had died. When Dior wore the Silmaril around his neck, "he appeared as the fairest of all the children of the world, of threefold race: of the Edain, and of the Eldar, and of the Maiar of the Blessed Realm." (Sil., p. 236) The realm of Doriath was temporarily revived while Dior had possession of the Silmaril.
The sons of Feanor sent a message to Dior staking their claim to the Silmaril which had been made by their father, but Dior did not respond. At Yule in the year 506 to 507, the sons of Feanor attacked Doriath and there was a battle in Menegroth. Dior killed Celegorm, but he was slain along with his wife Nimloth and many of his people. The realm of Doriath was ruined and never arose again.
Dior's six-year-old sons were abandoned deep in the woods by Celegorm's servants. It is not known what became of them, but according to one tale (HoME XI, p. 351) they found their way back to Ossiriand. Elwing was rescued along with the Silmaril by a few survivors of Doriath and they settled at the Havens of Sirion. Elwing later married Earendil and had twin sons, Elrond and Elros.
The name Dior means "successor" in the dialect of Doriath from the root ndew meaning "follow, come behind." He was also called Dior Aranel the Beautiful and Dior Eluchíl. Aranel means "royal Elf" in Sindarin from aran meaning "king" and el meaning "Elf." Eluchíl means "heir of Elu." Thingol was known as Elu Thingol and the word hîl means "heir" in Sindarin.
There was also a Steward of Gondor named Dior.
See the family tree of Thingol below and the family tree of the House of Beor.
The Silmarillion: "Of the Fifth Battle," p. 188; "Of the Ruin of Doriath," p. 234-37; "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin," p. 240, 244; "Of the Voyage of Earendil," p. 246-47, 251, 253-54; Index entry for Eluchil; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entries for ar(a) and el
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for KHIL and NDEW
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 71; "The Later Quenta Silmarillion," p. 231 (genealogy), 232, 234 (genealogy); "The Wanderings of Hurin," p. 257; "The Tale of Years," p. 345-51, 353
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Problem of Ros," p. 369
Heraldic device of Earendil by J.R.R. Tolkien
Earendil the Mariner by Ted Nasmith
As a child, Earendil lived in Gondolin which was ruled by Idril's father Turgon. The realm of Gondolin was hidden within the Encircling Mountains and its location was unknown to Morgoth until he captured Turgon's nephew Maeglin. Morgoth promised to let Maeglin rule Gondolin and to give him Idril whom Maeglin desired, and Maeglin betrayed the city and its people.
Morgoth's forces attacked Gondolin in 510 when Earendil was seven years old. Maeglin seized Idril and Earendil, but Tuor rescued them and threw Maeglin down from the city walls. The city was sacked but Tuor and Idril fled with their son and a number of others. They climbed the Encircling Mountains over the Eagles' Cleft where Glorfindel battled a Balrog to allow the survivors to escape.
Tuor and Idril led their people to settle at the Havens of Sirion by the Sea in 511. They joined another group of survivors from the ruin of Doriath including Elwing. Earendil grew to love the Sea. He was befriended by Cirdan the Shipwright who lived on the nearby Isle of Balar and from him Earendil learned to be a mariner. Earendil built the great white ship Vingilot with the help of Cirdan.
Around 525, Earendil married Elwing. That same year, Tuor and Idril departed over the Sea. Before she left, Idril gave Earendil the Elessar. Earendil became the lord of the people who lived at the Havens of Sirion. Elwing gave birth to twin sons, Elrond and Elros, around 532 while Earendil was at sea.
Around 534, Earendil began to sail far into uncharted seas. He hoped to find his parents, and he also sought a way to the Undying Lands in order to ask the Valar to help the Elves and Men of Middle-earth in their struggle against Morgoth. But he found the way obscured by shadows and enchantments and his ship was driven back by strong winds. He decided to return to his family in Middle-earth.
But in 538, before Earendil reached home, the Havens of Sirion were attacked by the sons of Feanor who wanted the Silmaril that Elwing possessed. Many Elves were slain and Elrond and Elros were taken captive.
Elwing jumped into the Sea with the Silmaril. She was turned into a bird by Ulmo, the Vala of the Waters, and she flew to find Earendil's ship. She collapsed on the deck of Vingilot and the next morning she returned to her true form.
Earendil and Elwing despaired that their sons would be killed, though in fact Maglor spared the children's lives. Earendil believed that the Valar were the only hope left for Middle-earth and he resumed his quest to find the Undying Lands accompanied by Elwing and three mariners - Aerandir, Erellont, and Falathar.
Earendil wore the Silmaril on his brow and the jewel which held the light of the Two Trees of Valinor guided him past the Enchanted Isles and through the Shadowy Seas. Vingilot reached the Bay of Eldamar on the shores of the Undying Lands around 542. Earendil went ashore and told Elwing and the mariners to wait aboard Vingilot, but Elwing followed him.
Earendil travelled inland alone and saw no one until he was summoned by Eonwe, the herald of Manwe, chief of the Valar. Eonwe brought Earendil before the Valar. As one who had the blood of both Elves and Men, Earendil was able to plead on behalf of the two peoples who had fought a losing battle against Morgoth for centuries, and the Valar listened and agreed to intervene.
But Earendil's fate also had to be determined. It was forbidden for mortal Men and the exiled Elves of the Noldor to come to the Undying Lands, and Earendil was of both races. Manwe judged that Earendil and his kindred the Half-elven should have the choice whether to be counted among Men or Elves. In either case, Earendil and Elwing would not be allowed to return to Middle-earth.
Earendil let Elwing decide first and she chose the kindred of the Elves. Earendil felt closer to the kindred of Men but he made the same choice as Elwing for her sake. When their sons later faced the same decision, Elrond chose to be counted among the Elves while Elros chose Men and became the first King of Numenor.
The mariners who had accompanied Earendil were sent back to Middle-earth in another ship. Vingilot was hallowed and it was taken through the Door of Night to sail across the heavens with Earendil at the helm. He wore the Silmaril on his brow and appeared as a star traversing the night sky. It was a beacon of hope to the peoples of Middle-earth, and Morgoth grew doubtful though he believed no one could defeat him.
The Host of the Valar fought Morgoth in the War of Wrath from around 545 to 587. At the end of the war, Morgoth unleashed winged Dragons led by Ancalagon the Black. Earendil flew Vingilot to fight the Dragons with the help of Thorondor, King of the Eagles, and other great birds. The battle lasted a day and a night and in the end Earendil slew Ancalagon. Morgoth was defeated by the Host of the Valar and he was cast through the Door of Night into the Timeless Void beyond the Walls of the World.
Earendil continued to sail the heavens in Vingilot guarding the Door of Night while Elwing awaited him in the Undying Lands. The Star of Earendil was most often seen near dawn and dusk as the Morning Star and Evening Star. The Star of Earendil led the Men who had helped fight Morgoth to their new home of Numenor in 32 of the Second Age. Among these Men was Earendil's son Elros.
The light of the Star of Earendil was captured by Galadriel in the Phial that Frodo Baggins carried on his quest to destroy the One Ring. In Mordor, Sam Gamgee saw the Star of Earendil through a break in the clouds in the western sky.
The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.Names & Etymology:
The Return of the King: "The Land of Shadow," p. 199
Eärendil's mother-name - given to him by Idril - was Ardamir or Ardamírë meaning "Jewel of the World," a prophetic reference to the Silmaril that he would carry across the night sky.
In Adunaic, the language of Numenor, he was called Azrubêl. The word azar means "Sea." He was also called Eärendil Halfelven, Eärendil the Blessed, Bright Eärendil, and Eärendil the Mariner.
See the family tree of Finwe below.
The Silmarillion:"Of Men," p. 105; "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin," p. 241-44; "Of the Voyage of Earendil and the War of Wrath," passim; "Akallabeth," p. 259-61, 264, 270, 275-76, 281; "Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age," p. 286; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entries for ear and (n)dil
The Fellowship of the Ring: "A Knife in the Dark," p. 206; "Many Meetings," p. 246-50; "The Council of Elrond," p. 256; "The Mirror of Galadriel," p. 380; "Farewell to Lorien," p. 393
The Two Towers: "The Stairs of Cirith Ungol," p. 321; "Shelob's Lair," p. 329
The Return of the King: The Tower of Cirith Ungol," p. 191; "The Land of Shadow," p. 199
Appendix A of The Lord of the Rings: "The Numenorean Kings," 314 and note 6, 315
Unfinished Tales: "Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin," p. 30, 55 note 26; "Narn i Hin Hurin," p. 156; "A Description of the Island of Numenor," p. 171 and note 2; "The Line of Elros," p. 218; "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn," p. 249-51
The History of Middle-earth, vol. IX, Sauron Defeated: "The Norton Club Papers (Part Two)," p. 305; "The Drowning of Anadune," p. 431
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Tale of Years," p. 348-49, 351-52
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Shibboleth of Feanor," p. 348; "The Problem of Ros," p. 372-73 note 10, 376 note 18; "Last Writings," p. 386-87
The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien: Letter #131 and #297
Ecthelion was one of King Turgon's captains and he was also the Warden of the Great Gate of Gondolin. According to an early version of "The Fall of Gondolin," Ecthelion was the Lord of the House of the Fountain - one of the twelve Houses of Gondolin. They lived in the southern part of the city where the Fountains of the South were located.
Many of the inhabitants of southern Gondolin were musicians, and Ecthelion was the most skilled of them all. He played the flute and he had the best singing voice in Gondolin.
Ecthelion fought in the Battle of Unnumbered Tears in the year 472 of the First Age. When the Gondolindrim were forced to retreat, Ecthelion and Glorfindel guarded the flanks.
In his capacity as Warden of the Great Gate, Ecthelion was responsible for guarding the last of the Seven Gates of Gondolin. The Seven Gates barred the ravine called the Orfalch Echor which led through the Encircling Mountains into the valley of Tumladen. The city of Gondolin was hidden within the valley and its location was kept secret from outsiders. Strangers who chanced to find the Hidden Way into Gondolin were obliged to remain in the city or be killed.
Ecthelion was stationed in one of the towers flanking the Great Gate. He wore silver and his helmet had a steel spike topped with a diamond and he bore a shield studded with a thousand crystals. He was able to open the Great Gate with the touch of his hands.
In 495, a Man named Tuor came to the Hidden Way claiming to be on an errand from Ulmo, one of the Valar. Tuor was brought before Ecthelion by Elemmakil of the Outer Guard. Ecthelion realized that Tuor spoke on behalf of Ulmo, and he recognized that Tuor wore that armor that Turgon had left in his old halls of Vinyamar on the instructions of Ulmo as proof of identity for just such a messenger.
Ecthelion allowed Tuor to pass through the Great Gate. Tuor delivered Ulmo's message to Turgon, warning him to abandon Gondolin and head for the Sea. But Turgon decided to remain, and in 510 Gondolin was attacked by Morgoth's forces.
The early story "The Fall of Gondolin" gives a detailed account of the battle, although this version is not entirely consistent with later versions. According to this tale, during the battle "Ecthelion's folk there slew more of the goblins than fell ever in all the battles of the Eldalië with that race, and that his name is a terror among them to this latest day, and a warcry to the Eldar." (BoLT 2, p. 180)
Ecthelion is credited with killing the Orc champion Orcobal. It is also said that he slew three Balrogs in addition to Gothmog. (Though Christopher Tolkien notes in BoLT 2, p. 212 that at the time this version was written Balrogs were "less terrible" and "more destructible" than they later became.)
Ecthelion's greatest deed was his battle to the death with Gothmog, Lord of Balrogs. The fight took place in the Square of the King where the Gondolindrim retreated to make a last stand. Ecthelion was already wounded in his shield-arm. Tuor was attacked by Gothmog and Ecthelion came to Tuor's aid. Gothmog wounded Ecthelion's sword-arm so Ecthelion drove the spike on his helmet into Gothmog's chest. They fell together into the great fountain and sank to the bottom and both Gothmog and Ecthelion perished.
Gondolin was destroyed by Morgoth's forces but Tuor and Idril escaped with their son Earendil whose pleas to the Valar ultimately resulted in the defeat of Morgoth in the War of Wrath.
The word ecthel is translated as "fountain" in the early Gnomish lexicon, corresponding to the early Qenya word ektelë, which is appropriate for Ecthelion of the Fountain. However, the later Etymologies in HoME V define ecthel as "spear," although there is still a Quenya word ehtelë (Sindarin = eithel) meaning "issue of water, spring." In addition, a note in HoME XI suggests that the name contains the word thel meaning "intend, mean, purpose, resolve, will."
He was called Ecthelion of the Fountain and Lord of the Fountains. He also held the rank of Warden of the Great Gate.
The Silmarillion: "Of the Return of the Noldor," p. 107; "Of the Fifth Battle," p. 194; "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin," p. 239, 242; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entry for kel
Unfinished Tales: "Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin," p. 46, 50-51, 55-56 notes 29 and 31
The History of Middle-earth, vol. II, The Book of Lost Tales Part Two: "The Fall of Gondolin," p. 173, 175, 180-84, 191, 211-13, 215-15; "Appendix: Names in The Lost Tales - Part Two," p. 338
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for EK, EKTE, KEL, and STELEG
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "Maeglin," p. 318-19, 328
Celegorm and Curufin tried to turn the Elves of Nargothrond against Finrod because they didn't want anyone to obtain one of the Silmarils made by their father Feanor and because they hoped to send Finrod alone to his death so they could rule Nargothrond themselves. Curufin convinced many of Finrod's people that Morgoth would destroy Nargothrond if they undertook the quest and they refused to accompany Finrod.
But Edrahil and nine others stood by Finrod. Edrahil retrieved the crown that Finrod had cast away, saying: "...you remain my king, and theirs, whatever betide." (Sil, p. 170) Together they began the journey northward with Beren. Near the Ered Wethrin, they killed a company of Orcs and took their gear. Finrod used his arts to disguise himself and his companions as Orcs in order to get past Tol Sirion where Sauron dwelled.
But Sauron captured them and imprisoned them in a deep pit. He threatened them with death if they did not reveal their identities and their mission and he sent a werewolf into the dungeon. Edrahil and the other Elves did not betray Finrod and the werewolf devoured them one by one. Finrod also perished, but Beren escaped with the help of Luthien and accomplished the quest to steal a Silmaril.
The meaning of Edrahil is not known. It may contain the Sindarin word edra meaning "to open." It is similar in construction to the name Imrahil but that name is said to be Adunaic so a connection is unclear.
The Silmarillion: "Of Beren and Luthien," p. 170-72
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for ET and ETER
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 65-67
Elemmakil was close friends with Voronwe. Around 473, Voronwe left Gondolin on the orders of King Turgon to seek the help of the Valar against Morgoth. In 495, Elemmakil was on duty when Voronwe returned to Gondolin with a Man named Tuor. Strangers were not permitted to know the location of Gondolin and Elemmakil chastised Voronwe for violating their laws and especially for bringing someone who was not one of the Noldor.
As Captain of the Outer Guard, Elemmakil had the responsibility of deciding whether Tuor should be slain and he was upset with Voronwe for putting him that position. Then Tuor claimed to be on an errand from Ulmo - one of the Valar - and Elemmakil decided to defer judgment to Ecthelion, the Warden of the Great Gate. He led Tuor and Voronwe through the six gates to the last gate and Ecthelion allowed Tuor to enter Gondolin.
Turgon ordered the Hidden Way to be blocked shortly after Tuor arrived so it is possible that Elemmakil was reassigned to other duties. In 510, Gondolin was destroyed by Morgoth's forces. Whether Elemmakil survived the attack is not known.
The name Elemmakil means "star sword" in Quenya fromelen meaning "star" and makil or macil meaning "sword."
Unfinished Tales: "Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin," p. 44-50
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for EL and MAK
Around 1495 of the Years of the Trees, Feanor set out for Middle-earth in pursuit of Morgoth who had stolen the Silmarils. Turgon was among the Noldor who followed Feanor, and Elenwe and Idril accompanied him. Around 1497, Feanor abandoned some of the Noldor including Turgon and his family when there were not enough ships to take all of them to Middle-earth.
The Noldor who had been abandoned journeyed northward and around 1500 they crossed the Grinding Ice to reach Middle-earth. Elenwe did not survive the perilous crossing. She and her daughter fell through the ice into the freezing water. Turgon was able to save Idril, but Elenwe was lost under the ice.
The name Elenwë means "star person" in Quenya from elen meaning "star" and the ending -wë meaning "person." She never reached Middle-earth and therefore did not have a Sindarin form of her name.
See the family tree of Finwe below.
The Silmarillion: "Of the Flight of the Noldor," p. 90; "Of Maeglin," p. 134, 136; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entry for el, elen
The History of Middle-earth, vol. X, Morgoth's Ring: "The Annals of Aman," p. 128
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 29-30; "Maeglin," p. 323
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Shibboleth of Feanor," p. 340 (-wë suffix), 345-46
Unfinished Tales: "Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin," p. 56 note 31
Decipher cards of Elladan (top) and Elrohir (bottom)
In 2509, Celebrian was captured by Orcs in the Redhorn Gate of the Misty Mountains. Elladan and Elrohir rescued their mother, but not before she was wounded and tormented. Celebrian was so troubled by her experience that she chose to leave Middle-earth and sail to the Undying Lands the next year.
Elladan and Elrohir never forgot what had happened to their mother and they spent many years pursuing Orcs and journeying in the Wild on quests of errantry. Often the brothers rode in the company of the Dunedain of the North, including Aragorn, the Chieftain of the Dunedain who had been raised in Rivendell as a foster-son by Elrond.
After the Council of Elrond in October of 3018, Elladan and Elrohir rode out with Aragorn to determine what had become of the Nazgul that had been swept away at the Ford of Bruinen. The brothers then continued on their own to Lothlorien to bring news of the Council's decision to Galadriel. They were the last of the scouts to return to Rivendell before the Fellowship's departure in December.
Galadriel later sent word to Rivendell that Aragorn was in need of his kindred, and the Grey Company comprised of 30 Rangers led by Halbarad headed south to join him. Elladan and Elrohir accompanied them, for they wanted to take part in the coming war with Sauron. The brothers were clad in bright mail and silver-grey cloaks.
The Grey Company caught up with Aragorn near the Fords of Isen in Rohan in the early hours of March 6, 3019. Elrohir delivered a message from Elrond, saying: "The days are short. If thou art in haste, remember the Paths of the Dead." (RotK, p. 48) Aragorn decided to take the Paths of the Dead after looking in the palantir and realizing that the Corsairs posed a threat to Gondor from the south.
Elladan and Elrohir and the Rangers went with Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli. They walked through the Paths of the Dead on March 8. Elladan brought up the rear, and the Dead followed behind. At the Stone of Erech, Elrohir gave Aragorn a silver horn which he used to summon the Dead to fulfill their oath to fight servants of Sauron. The Dead followed the Grey Company to Pelargir, where they captured the fleet of the Corsairs.
At the Battle of the Pelennor Fields on March 15, Elladan and Elrohir fought wearing stars upon their brows. After the battle, Aragorn gave the Elendilmir - the symbol of royalty of the North-kingdom - into the safekeeping of Elladan and Elrohir, for he decided that the time was not yet right for him to claim the kingship. The brothers labored through the night at Aragorn's side helping the wounded.
At the debate of the Captains of the West on March 16, Elrohir declared that he and his brother were prepared to ride to war against Sauron in order to give Frodo Baggins time to fulfill his quest to destroy the One Ring. The Host of the West left Minas Tirith on March 18. Elladan and Elrohir rode in a company of 500 horsemen with the Rangers and the Knights of Dol Amroth. The brothers fought on the front line at the Battle of the Morannon until the Ring was destroyed and the realm of Sauron fell.
Elladan and Elrohir attended the victory celebration at the Field of Cormallen on April 8. On May 8 - a week after Aragorn's coronation - the brothers left Minas Tirith and rode north. They returned to Minas Tirith on Midsummer's Eve at the head of the company escorting their sister Arwen, who married Aragorn the next day. Elladan and Elrohir attended the funeral of King Theoden in Rohan, and at Edoras on August 14 they said farewell to Arwen.
Elrond left Middle-earth in 3021, but his sons remained at Rivendell for many years. Elladan and Elrohir delayed their choice whether to remain in Middle-earth as mortal Men or to pass over the Sea to dwell in the Undying Lands with the Elves. What they ultimately decided is not known.
The names Elladan and Elrohir both loosely translate as "Elf-Man" and indicate the brothers' dual heritage. The element el means "star" and the Elves were called the Eldar, or "People of the Stars."
Elladan includes the element adan the singular of Edain, the fathers of Men who became the Numenoreans. Thus Elladan may be translated as "Elf-Numenorean."
Elrohir contains the word rohir meaning "horse-lord" or "knight." The name Elrohir may be translated as "Elf-knight."
See the family trees of Finwe and Thingol below.
The Fellowship of the Ring: "Prologue - A Note on the Shire Records," p. 25; "Many Meetings," p. 239, 245; "The Ring Goes South," p. 286-87
The Return of the King: "The Passing of the Grey Company," p. 48-49, 51, 54, 56, 60-63; "The Battle of the Pelennor Fields," p. 123; "The Houses of Healing," p. 137, 147; "The Last Debate," p. 154, 157-58; "The Black Gate Opens," p. 159, 164, 168; "The Field of Cormallen," p. 232; "The Steward and the King," p. 248, 250-51; "Many Partings," p. 254, 256
Appendix A of The Lord of the Rings: "The Numenorean Kings," p. 314-15; "The North-kingdom and the Dunedain," p. 323; "The Tale of Aragorn and Arwen," p. 338
Appendix B of The Lord of the Rings: "The Tale of Years," p. 366
The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien: Letter #153 (Elladan & Elrohir's choice); Letter #211 (meanings of Elladan & Elrohir)
According to several accounts, Elured and Elurin were twins, born around 500 of the First Age. Elured was the elder of the two. They had a younger sister Elwing.
Dior's family lived in a house near the waterfall of Lanthir Lamath on the River Adurant in Ossiriand, a region in East Beleriand. They relocated to Doriath around 503 after Elu Thingol was killed by Dwarves who coveted the Silmaril he possessed. Dior became King of Doriath and Elured was his heir.
At Yule of 506 to 507, Doriath was attacked by the sons of Feanor who had sworn an oath to retrieve the Silmarils made by their father. Dior and Nimloth were killed. Elured and Elurin were taken deep into the woods of Doriath by the servants of Feanor's son Celegorm. The six-year-old boys were left in the woods in the middle of winter to starve. Celegorm's brother Maedhros repented and tried unsuccessfully to find Elured and Elurin. The fate of the twins is unknown, but according to one tale (HoME XI, p. 351) they were helped by birds who led them back to Ossiriand.
The Silmaril was saved from capture by some survivors of Doriath who also rescued Elwing and took her to the Havens of Sirion.
The name Eluréd means "heir of Elu (Thingol)." According to one source (HoME XII, p. 369), second element réd is from the word rêda which means "heir" in Beorian, the native language of Beren. Elured was the heir of Elu Thingol after his father Dior. (Dior was also called Eluchil meaning "heir of Elu" in Sindarin with the second element hîl meaning "heir.")
The name Elurín means "remembrance of Elu" in Sindarin. The word rîn means "remembrance" from the root ren meaning "recall, have in mind."
In earlier versions of the story Elúred was named Eldún or Elboron, and Elurín was named Elrún or Elbereth.
See the family tree of Thingol below.
The Silmarillion: "Of the Ruin of Doriath," p. 234, 236-37; Index, entries for Elured and Elurin
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Later Quenta Silmarillion," p. 231-32; "The Wanderings of Hurin," p. 257, 300 note 16; "The Tale of Years," p. 348-51
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Problem of Ros," p. 369, 372 note 8
When Elwing was born, her parents lived in a house by the waterfall of Lanthir Lamath on the River Adurant in the region of Ossiriand in eastern Beleriand. Shortly after her birth, they moved to the halls of Menegroth in Doriath. Thingol had been slain by Dwarves who coveted the Silmaril that Thingol possessed. As the son of Thingol's only child Luthien, Dior was Thingol's heir and he became King of Doriath.
Luthien kept the Silmaril for a time but she died and it was brought to Dior in Doriath. The sons of Feanor had sworn to recover the Silmarils made by their father, and they launched an attack on Doriath at Yule of 506 to 507. Dior and Nimloth were killed and their sons Elured and Elurin were taken into the woods and abandoned to an unknown fate.
But Elwing survived along with some of her kin. They escaped with the Silmaril and settled at the Mouths of Sirion by the Sea. Soon afterwards another group of refugees arrived from the ruin of Gondolin. The newcomers were led by Tuor and Idril who brought with them their young son Earendil. Tuor and Idril departed over the Sea in 525 and Earendil became the lord of the people who lived at the Havens of Sirion.
About the same time, Earendil married Elwing. They had twin sons, Elrond and Elros, born in 532. Earendil was a mariner and he spent much time at Sea, seeking his parents and trying to find a way to the Undying Lands to beseech the Valar to help the peoples of Middle-earth defeat Morgoth.
In 538, while Earendil was at Sea, the remaining sons of Feanor demanded that Elwing give them the Silmaril. When she refused, the sons of Feanor attacked the Havens of Sirion. Many Elves were killed and Elrond and Elros were captured. Elwing took the Silmaril and dove into the Sea. She was turned into a white bird by Ulmo, the Vala of the Waters, and she flew to find Earendil's ship Vingilot.
Elwing was exhausted from her flight and she collapsed on the ship's deck near death but awoke the next morning in her own form. Elwing and Earendil believed their sons would be killed, though in fact their lives were spared by Feanor's son Maglor. Earendil decided to continue his search for the Undying Lands and Elwing remained with him.
Vingilot finally reached the Undying Lands in 542. Earendil told Elwing to wait for him aboard the ship, but she came ashore. He went alone to seek the Valar while Elwing went to Alqualonde, the Haven of the Swans, and met the Elves of the Teleri who lived there.
Mortal Men were not permitted to come to the Undying Lands. Elwing and Earendil both had the blood of Men, but Manwe - the chief of the Valar - judged that they should be spared though they were not permitted to return to Middle-earth.
Since they were Half-elven, Elwing and Earendil and their sons were given the choice whether to be counted among the mortal Men or the immortal Elves. Elwing chose to be an Elf, and Earendil chose the same for her sake though he had greater affinity with Men.
The Valar set the ship Vingilot in the heavens and Earendil sailed the skies with the Silmaril on his brow. The Star of Earendil gave hope to the peoples of Middle-earth and caused Morgoth to doubt. The Valar heeded Earendil's request and Morgoth was defeated in the War of Wrath.
Elwing did not accompany Earendil on his voyages. She lived in a white tower on the coast in the north. Sea-birds came to the tower and Elwing learned their languages and she also learned to fly using wings that were white and silver-grey. Sometimes she flew to meet Earendil when he returned to the Undying Lands.
Elrond and Elros were given the same choice as their parents. Elros chose to be a Man and he became the first King of Numenor and died in the year 442 of the Second Age. Elrond chose to be counted among the Elves and he remained in Middle-earth for many millennia until he sailed to the Undying Lands at the end of the Third Age.
The name Elwing means "Star-spray" in Sindarin from el meaning "star" and wing meaning "foam, spray." She was named for the starlight shining in the waterfall near her parents' house on the night of her birth. She was called Elwing the White.
See the family tree of Thingol below.
The Fellowship of the Ring: "A Knife in the Dark," p. 206; "Many Meetings," p. 247; "The Council of Elrond," p. 256
Appendix A of The Lord of the Rings: "The Numenorean Kings," p. 314
The Silmarillion: "Of Men, p. 105; "Of the Coming of Men into the West," p. 148; "Of the Ruin of Doriath," p. 235-37; "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin," p. 244; "Of the Voyage of Earendil," p. 246-51, 254; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entries for el and wing
Unfinished Tales: "A Description of the Island of Numenor," p. 171 note 2; "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn," p. 233
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Tale of Years," p. 348-52
Eol was one of the Teleri and a kinsman of King Thingol of Doriath according to one account (Sil, p. 132-33).* The Teleri had embarked on the Great Journey but many of them remained in Beleriand rather than continue to the Undying Lands, and they became known as the Sindar.
Eol lived for a time in the Forest of Region which was part of Thingol's realm, though he was restless and uneasy there. In 1497, Thingol's wife Melian created the protective Girdle of Melian around the Forests of Region and Neldoreth. Eol decided to relocate to the woods of Nan Elmoth east of Doriath.
Nan Elmoth was a dark forest with tall trees that blocked out the sunlight. Eol preferred living in the shadows and he had keen eyes that could see in the darkness. His house was deep in the forest, about fifteen miles from the Celon on its northern border. He had a few silent and secretive servants but otherwise no one else lived in Nan Elmoth.
Thingol required a fee from Eol for permission to live in Nan Elmoth even though the woods were not within the borders of Doriath. Eol begrudgingly gave Thingol the sword Anglachel which he had forged from the iron ore of a meteorite, though he kept its mate Anguirel for himself. Melian later remarked that Anglachel was imbued with Eol's malice.
The Dwarves of Belegost and Nogrod passed Nan Elmoth on the road to the Fords of Aros and Eol would meet and talk with them. He went to stay in Belegost and Nogrod from time to time to observe the Dwarves at work. Eol learned new skills in metalworking and he became one of the greatest smiths of that age. There were rumors that he had acquired his skills from Morgoth as a slave in Angband, but those rumors were unfounded.
Eol invented a shiny black metal called galvorn. Galvorn was as hard as steel and resistant to blades and darts, yet it was also thin and supple. Eol made armor from galvorn which he wore when he travelled outside Nan Elmoth.
In 316 of the First Age, Aredhel - the sister of King Turgon of Gondolin - wandered into Nan Elmoth. Eol desired her and he used his enchantments to lure her to his home. Eol made Aredhel his wife, and she was not entirely unwilling at first though she was not completely happy either.
Eol would not allow Aredhel to go out in daylight and he forbade her to contact her kindred, the Noldor. Eol resented the Noldor for establishing themselves as lords in Beleriand, and he blamed them for the return of Morgoth and the ensuing wars. The Noldor had also slain many Teleri in the Undying Lands to steal the ships that brought them to Middle-earth.
Aredhel had a son in 320. She secretly named him Lomion meaning "Son of Twilight" in Quenya - the language of her people which Eol had forbidden her to use. When the child was twelve years old, Eol named him Maeglin meaning "Sharp Glance" because of his keen eyes and his insight. Eol trained Maeglin to be a smith and he took his son with him on his visits to Belegost and Nogrod.
Maeglin heard stories about Gondolin and the Noldor from his mother and he wanted to visit his kin, but Eol refused to allow it. Maeglin became resentful and he stopped travelling with Eol.
In 400, Eol left Nan Elmoth to attend the midsummer feast at Nogrod. Maeglin convinced Aredhel to flee to Gondolin. When Eol came home and found them gone he set out in pursuit. He believed they had gone to Himlad north of Nan Elmoth to visit Celegorm and Curufin - the sons of Feanor, who had led the Noldor to Middle-earth.
Eol was so angry that he even travelled in the daylight. At the Fords of Aros, Eol was stopped by Curufin who informed him that Aredhel and Maeglin had gone westward toward Gondolin. Curufin hated Eol but he was obliged to let him go unharmed.
Eol caught up to his wife and son at the Fords of Brithiach but they did not see him. He followed them to the Hidden Way into Gondolin where he was stopped by guards. The guards found it difficult to restrain Eol but they did not kill him since he claimed to be Aredhel's husband. They sent word to Turgon who had Eol brought before him at his sister's request.
Turgon welcomed Eol, but it was his policy that those who found the hidden realm of Gondolin could never leave. Eol refused to abide by this law even though the alternative was death. Eol decided that if he were to be killed, he would take his son with him. He threw a javelin at Maeglin, but Aredhel jumped in front of her son and was hit instead. Aredhel asked Turgon to have mercy on Eol, but the javelin had been poisoned and she died during the night.
Eol was taken to Caragdur - a precipice on the north side of the hill where Gondolin stood. Maeglin did not object to his father's execution, and Eol cursed him, saying he would suffer a similar fate. Eol was thrown from the precipice to his death.
Maeglin later betrayed Gondolin to Morgoth and the city was destroyed. But during the battle, Tuor cast Maeglin from the city walls and he died as his father had before him.
According to a later source (HoME XI, p. 409), Eol was said to be one of the Avari who had not undertaken the Great Journey but had come to Beleriand at a later time. Eol was described as a member of the Second Clan, called the Tatyar. Those of the Tatyar who did undertake the Great Journey became the Noldor, which would mean Eol was distantly akin to them.
The name Eöl has no meaning in Quenya or Sindarin according to Tolkien (HoME XI, p. 320). He was called the Dark Elf because of his preference for darkness as well as his dark appearance and character, though the name also refers to the fact that Eöl was one of the Dark Elves who had never been to the Undying Lands to see the light of the Two Trees.
See the family tree of Finwe below.
The Silmarillion: "Of the Sindar," p. 92; "Of Maeglin," passim; "Of Turin Turambar," p. 201-2; "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin," p. 242-43; Index entry for Dark Elves
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 47-48; "Maeglin," passim; "Quendi and Eldar," p. 409, 420 note 33
chief counsellor of Elrond. Erestor attended
the Council of Elrond on October 25, 3018 of the Third Age.
During the discussion about what to do with the One Ring, Erestor asked whetherTom Bombadil could be called upon to help, or whether the Ring could be sent to him for safe-keeping, but that option was rejected. When it seemed clear that destroying the Ring was the only option, Erestor said, "That is the path of despair. Of folly I would say, if the long wisdom of Elrond did not forbid me." But Gandalf replied, "let folly be our cloak, a veil before the eyes of the Enemy!" (FotR, p. 282)
After the War of the Ring, Erestor was among the party that accompanied Arwen to Minas Tirith for her wedding to Aragorn. They arrived in the city on Midsummer's Eve of 3019. It is not known whether Erestor left Middle-earth with Elrond in September of 3021, but it is likely that he passed over the Sea into the West at some point.
Jonathan Harding as Erestor
in the New Line film
Gwindor was captured by Morgoth in the Battle of Unnumbered Tears in 472 of the First Age. He escaped from Angband and in 490 he returned to Nargothrond with a Man calling himself Agarwaen but who was in fact Turin. Finduilas fell in love with the newcomer though she knew he did not return her feelings and she did not want to hurt Gwindor.
Finduilas became sad and withdrawn and Gwindor realized what had happened. He released Finduilas from any bond to him but he warned her that relationships between immortal Elves and mortal Men were inadvisable. He also told her Turin's true identity and said that Turin was under a dark doom that would destroy her.
In 495, Nargothrond was attacked by Glaurung the Dragon. Orodreth was killed in the Battle of Tumhalad and Gwindor was mortally wounded. Before he died, Gwindor urged Turin to save Finduilas, saying: "... she alone stands between thee and thy doom. If thou fail her, it shall not fail to find thee." (Sil, p. 213)
Finduilas was captured by Orcs and she cried out to Turin for help, but Turin fell under Glaurung's spell and he could not move. Glaurung lied to Turin, claiming that his mother Morwen and sister Nienor were enslaved in Dor-lomin and that "... if thou tarry for Finduilas, then never shalt thou see Morwen again, and never at all shalt thou see Nienor thy sister; and they will curse thee." (Sil, p. 214)
Turin believed the Dragon's lies and went in search of Morwen and Nienor instead of following Finduilas even though he imagined he could still hear her cries for help. It was said that "of his abandoning of [Finduilas] in danger that he himself could see came the very direst evil upon him and all he loved ..." (BoLT 2, p. 87)
Finduilas and the other captives were taken northward. At the Crossings of Teiglin, their captors were attacked by a group of Men from the Forest of Brethil led by Dorlas. The Orcs killed their prisoners before they could be rescued. Finduilas was pinned to a tree with a spear and was left to die. With her last words, she asked the Men of Brethil to tell Turin she was there. The Men buried her nearby in a grave called Haudh-en-Elleth, the Mound of the Elf-maid.
Turin meanwhile went to Dor-lomin and found that Morwen and Nienor were gone and he realized that Glaurung had deceived him. He went in search of Finduilas but found only her grave and he was deeply grieved. He stayed in the Forest of Brethil and helped the Men there fight Orcs that encroached on their land. In particular, Turin fiercely defended Haudh-en-Elleth so that Orcs did not dare to go near it.
Turin later found a woman lying on Finduilas's grave. The woman had no memory and Turin did not realize that it was his sister Nienor whom he had never met. Turin called her Niniel and he married her.
In 499, Glaurung came to the Forest of Brethil. He avoided Haudh-en-Elleth at the Crossings of Teiglin and instead crossed the river at the narrow ravine called the Deer's Leap. This allowed Turin to ambush Glaurung and he wondered if Finduilas still stood between him and his doom.
But though Turin slew Glaurung, the Dragon revealed to Niniel that she was Turin's sister and she killed herself. Turin lamented, "Bitterly have I paid, O Finduilas! that ever I gave heed to the Dragon. Send me now counsel!" (UT, p. 143) Then Mablung arrived with news that confirmed that Niniel was indeed his sister and Turin committed suicide as well.
The name Finduilas may be Telerian in origin. The meaning is uncertain. The element fin means "hair, golden hair" and the element las means "leaf." Gwindor called her Faelivrin meaning "gleam of the sun on the pools of Ivrin." (Sil, p. 210)
See the family trees of Finwe and Thingol below.
The Silmarillion: "Of Turin Turambar," p. 209-10, 213-17, 219, 225; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entry for fin
Unfinished Tales: "Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin," p. 37, 54 note 15; "Narn I Hin Hurin," p. 108-12, 122, 130, 143, 150 note 28, 157-59
The Children of Hurin: "Turin in Nargothrond," p. 159, 164-69; "The Fall of Nargothrond," p. 177-81; "The Return of Turin to Dor-lomin," p. 188; "The Coming of Turin to Brethil," p. 192-97; "Nienor in Brethil," p. 214; "The Coming of Glaurung," p. 229; "The Death of Glaurung," p. 242; "The Death of Turin," p. 253
The History of Middle-earth, vol. II, The Book of Lost Tales Part Two: "Turambar and the Foaloke," p. 87
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entry for LAS1
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 83-93, 95, 101, 138-43, 147-48, 160; "The Wanderings of Hurin," p. 256
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Appendix on Languages," p. 36
The name Galathil appears to be related to Galathilion - a tree made in the image of Telperion, one of the Two Trees of Valinor. The name is derived from galadh meaning "tree" in Sindarin and the element thil meaning "shine silver."
See the family tree of Thingol below.
Unfinished Tales: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn," p. 233, 266
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for GALAD, SIL, and THIL
Nathan Clark as an Elf named Galdor in the New Line film
When Tom Bombadil was mentioned, Galdor agreed that Tom could not keep the Ring safe, and he wondered whether it could be kept safe at Rivendell or the Havens or Lothlorien or anywhere else. And when the possibility of casting the Ring into the Sea was considered, Galdor warned that the road West would be closely watched by Sauron.
There was an Elf named Galdor in the early story of "The Fall of Gondolin" (BoLT 2) who was the Lord of the House of the Tree. This Galdor was said to be the most valiant of all the Elves of Gondolin apart from Turgon. He aided in the escape of Tuor, Idril, and Earendil from Morgoth's forces and settled with them at the Havens of Sirion and later journeyed to Tol Eressea in the Undying Lands.
A note in Tolkien's "Last Writings" (HoME XII, p. 387-88) considers the possibility that Galdor of Gondolin and Galdor of the Grey Havens were the same Elf but a definitive conclusion is not made. It is also suggested that Galdor was simply a common name that might have been repeated.
There was also a Man of the Edain named Galdor.
The meaning of Galdor is uncertain. According to "The Etymologies," the first element gal may be from gala meaning "thrive, prosper, be glad" or from galad meaning "tree." Another possibility is gal meaning "shine." The ending dor is a variation of taur meaning "high, noble."
The Fellowship of the Ring: "The Council of Elrond," p. 253, 263, 279-80
The History of Middle-earth, vol. II, The Book of Lost Tales Part Two: "The Fall of Gondolin," p. 173-76, 181-82, 185, 189, 191-93, 215-16
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for GAL, GALA, GALAD and TA/TA3
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "Last Writings," p. 387-88 note 1, 388 note 3
Bilbo hid the Dwarves in empty barrels and returned the keys to spare the guard trouble. When a group of Elves arrived to throw the barrels into the river to return them to Lake-town, they woke Galion. The butler told them to send all the barrels, even those that seemed unusually heavy, and Bilbo and his companions floated down the Forest River to Long Lake.
The name Galion may be derived from gal meaning "shine" or gala meaning "thrive, prosper, be glad" or galad meaning "tree." The suffix -ion is a masculine ending often denoting "son of." It is not known whether his name is of Sindarin of Silvan origin.
The Hobbit:"Barrels out of Bond," p. 189-95
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," p. 411, entries for GAL, GALA, GALAD and YO/YON
Gelmir was captured by Morgoth's forces during the Battle of Sudden Flame in 455-56 of the First Age. For 17 years, Gelmir was enslaved along with a number of other Elves, and his captors blinded him.
In 472, an alliance of Elves, Men, and Dwarves prepared to launch an attack on Morgoth from two sides. The western army under Fingon hid in the fortresses and valleys of the Ered Wethrin awaiting a signal from Maedhros and the eastern army. But Morgoth caused the eastern army to be delayed and he sent a force to the Ered Wethrin with orders to draw out the western army by any means.
The Captain of Morgoth's forces sent Gelmir forward in plain view of the defenders of Barad Eithel. Gelmir's hands and feet were cut off and then he was beheaded. Gelmir's brother Gwindor was in Barad Eithel and he charged forth and slew his brother's killers. Then Fingon gave the order for the western army to attack. The Battle of Unnumbered Tears resulted in a victory for Morgoth, and Gwindor was captured and enslaved in Angband.
The name Gelmir may be composed of the Sindarin words gell meaning "joy, triumph" and mir meaning "jewel, precious thing, treasure."
The Silmarillion: "Of the Fifth Battle," p. 188, 191
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for GYEL and MIR
Top: Gildor by Alan Lee
Bottom: Decipher card of Gildor
To the Hobbits, Gildor and the Elves appeared to shimmer as they walked through the night. The starlight glimmered in their hair and eyes. They camped in a clearing in the Woody End near Woodhall and the Elves provided the Hobbits with bread and fruit and a fragrant drink.
Frodo stayed up late talking to Gildor. Frodo had greeted Gildor by saying, "Elen síla lúmenn' omentielvo" (A star shines upon the hour of our meeting) and the Elf commended Frodo on his knowledge of the the Ancient Tongue and named him Elf-friend. Gildor perceived that the Enemy was after Frodo, though he did not know why. He was reluctant to give Frodo any advice in Gandalf's absence.
"That Gandalf should be late, does not bode well. But it is said: 'Do not meddle in the affairs of Wizards, for they are subtle and quick to anger.' The choice is yours: to go or wait."Gildor then advised Frodo to leave quickly and to take with him friends he could trust and to flee from the Nazgul. He also promised to send out word to Elves and others to be on the lookout for Frodo and help him on his journey. Gildor was true to his word, for both Tom Bombadil and Aragorn heard of Frodo's peril from Gildor. Word also reached Rivendell, and Glorfindel rode out to find Aragorn and the Hobbits as they were pursued by the Nazgul from Weathertop.
"And it is also said," answered Frodo: " 'Go not to the Elves for counsel, for they will say both no and yes.' "
The Fellowship of the Ring: "Three Is Company," p. 93
Gildor and the Elves continued on their way. Gildor had told Frodo they were tarrying in Middle-earth before heading to the Grey Havens to pass over the Sea to the Undying Lands. Where they wandered is not known, but on September 22, 3021, Gildor and Frodo met once again in the same spot in the Woody End where they had met three years earlier. Along with Elrond,Galadriel and Gandalf, they journeyed to Grey Havens and together they departed over the Sea into the West.
Note: Gildor told Frodo that he was of the House of Finrod. However, he may actually have been of the House of Finarfin. Finarfin was originally called Finrod by Tolkien, but when he changed the name he did not revise this particular passage.
Gil means "star"; the suffix dor is a form of taur meaning "noble." Thus Gildor may be translated as "noble star" or "star lord." The suffiix -ion denotes "son of," so Gildor may have been the son of an Elf named Inglor. Inglor is a combination of the Quenya indo meaning "heart, mood" and glor, meaning "golden," thus a possible translation is "golden heart."
The Fellowship of the Ring: "Three Is Company," p. 88-94; "In the House of Tom Bombadil," p. 143; "Strider," p. 184; "Flight to the Ford," p. 222
The Return of the King: "The Grey Havens," p. 308
The History of Middle-earth, vol. VI, The Return of the Shadow: "From Hobbiton to the Woody End," p. 72
in the First Age:
Glorfindel was among the Elves who left the Undying Lands in defiance of the Valar on a quest to retrieve the Silmarils from Morgoth. It is said that Glorfindel took part in the rebellion because of his kinship and allegiance with Turgon and that Glorfindel did not participate in the killing of other Elves known as the Kinslaying.
In Middle-earth, Glorfindel settled in Gondolin, the hidden realm founded by Turgon. Glorfindel was the lord of the House of the Golden Flower. He fought in the Battle of Unnumbered Tears in the year 472. When the battle was lost, Glorfindel helped guard the flanks as Turgon and his remaining forces retreated to safety.
Gondolin was attacked by the forces of Morgoth in the year 510. Turgon's daughter Idril escaped along with her husband Tuor and her son Earendil and other survivors. They fled over the high pass called the Eagles' Cleft, but they were waylaid by Orcs and a Balrog.
Glorfindel allowed the others to escape by engaging the Balrog in battle. They fell together into the abyss and died. Glorfindel's body was retrieved by the Great Eagle Thorondor and he was buried near the pass under a green mound covered with yellow flowers.
Elves were immortal and thus did not die of natural causes, but they could be killed by violence as Glorfindel was. When this happened, their spirits went to the Halls of Mandos to be judged, and after a time their spirits could be restored to their bodily forms to live again.
Like all those who participated in the rebellion, Glorfindel was banned from returning to the Undying Lands, but it is thought that this restriction was waived in Glorfindel's case because of his noble sacrifice in defense of the people of Gondolin. He was reincarnated and dwelled for a time in the Undying Lands. He may have become a friend and follower of the Maia Olorin, who was later known as Gandalf.
When Glorfindel returned to Middle-earth is uncertain. He may have accompanied Gandalf around the year 1000 of the Third Age. But it is more likely that Glorfindel came earlier, possibly around the year 1600 of the Second Age at the time when Sauronforged the One Ring. Glorfindel may have gone to Middle-earth to help Gil-galad and Elrond defend against Sauron's growing power.
in the Third Age:
Glorfindel lived at Rivendell, the realm of Elrond. In 1974, the Witch-king of Angmar invaded the North-kingdom of Arnor. Glorfindel led an army from Rivendell to the Battle of Fornost in 1975 and helped defeat the Witch-king's forces. Then the Witch-king himself came onto the battlefield and challenged Earnur, Captain of Gondor. Earnur's horse bolted and the Witch-king mocked him, but Glorfindel approached and the Witch-king fled from him. Glorfindel counselled Earnur not to follow, saying: "Far off yet is his doom, and not by the hand of man will he fall." (LotR, App. A, p. 332)
In October of 3018, word came to Rivendell from Gildor Inglorion that Frodo Baggins was heading for Rivendell pursued by the Nazgulled by the Witch-king. Glorfindel was one of the few in Rivendell powerful enough to face the Nine Nazgul. On October 9, he set out on his white horse Asfaloth and followed the Great East Road to the Last Bridge on the River Hoarwell.
There on October 11, Glorfindel found three Nazgul including Khamul waiting and they fled before him. Glorfindel left a green stone on the bridge as a token that it was now safe to cross and he pursued the Nazgul westward. He found two more Nazgul including the Witch-king who fled southward from him.
Aragorn found the green stone on October 13 and led the Hobbits safely across. Glorfindel picked up their trail on October 16 and at dusk on October 18 he caught up to them. To Frodo, Glorfindel appeared to shine with an inner light, and when the Elf touched the wound he had received from the Witch-king, Frodo felt the chill and pain lessen and his vision cleared. Glorfindel set Frodo on Asfaloth and they headed toward Rivendell.
At the Ford of Bruinen on October 20, the Nine Nazgul appeared. Frodo felt compelled to stop, but Glorfindel called out to Asfaloth to ride on and the horse carried Frodo across the river. On the far side, Frodo once again felt commanded to halt and he turned to face the Nazgul. Glorfindel was aware that Elrond would command the waters of the river to rise against the Nazgul, so he and the others kindled fire to drive the Nazgul into the river. Glorfindel revealed himself as a mighty Elf-lord in all his wrath, and he shone with a brilliant white light as he advanced. The Nazgul were swept away by the floodwaters and returned to Mordor.
Glorfindel attended the Council of Elrond on October 25. When it was suggested that the Ring might be sent to Tom Bombadil, Glorfindel replied that Tom would not be able to keep the Ring safe from Sauron forever. He said that the Ring would have to be sent over the Sea or cast into the Sea or destroyed - even though the destruction of the One Ring would mean that the Three Rings of the Elves would lose their power. At length it was determined that the only option was to destroy the Ring, and Frodo Baggins volunteered for this task.
In the matter of selecting Frodo's companions, Gandalf supported Merry Brandybuck and Pippin Took by saying: "I think, Elrond, that in this matter it would be well to trust rather to their friendship than to great wisdom. Even if you chose for us an elf-lord, such as Glorfindel, he could not storm the Dark Tower, nor open the road to the Fire by the power that is in him." (FotR, p. 289)
Nothing further is known of Glorfindel's activities during the War of the Ring. At the Battle of the Pelennor Fields on March 15, 3019, the words spoken by Glorfindel over 1,000 years before came to pass when the Witch-king was defeated at the hands of a woman - Eowyn- and a Hobbit - Merry Brandybuck. After the war, Glorfindel came to Minas Tirith for the wedding of Arwen and Aragorn.
Glorfindel's ulitmate fate is not known, but it seems likely that he would have eventually returned over the Sea to the Undying Lands.
Glorfindel of Gondolin is not equated with Glorfindel of Rivendell in any of J.R.R. Tolkien's published works. It was not until late in his life that Tolkien addressed the issue of the two Glorfindels in a pair of essays that were later published by Christopher Tolkien in The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth. In these essays, Tolkien concluded that both Glorfindels were the same Elf, but the matter remains a topic of debate and discussion among Tolkien fans.
Glorfindel means "golden haired" from glor meaning "gold" and fin meaning "hair."
The Fellowship of the Ring: "Flight to the Ford," p. 213, 221-227; "Many Meetings," p. 232, 234-37; "The Council of Elrond," p. 252-53, 279-80, 282; "The Ring Goes South," p. 289
The Return of the King: "The Steward and the King," p. 250
Appendix A of The Lord of the Rings: "Gondor and the Heirs of Anarion," p. 331-35
The Silmarillion: "Of the Fifth Battle: Nirnaeth Arnoediad," p. 194; "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin," p. 243-44; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entry for fin
The History of Middle-earth, vol. II, The Book of Lost Tales, Part Two: "The Fall of Gondolin," p. 173, 175, 182-83, 186, 192-94, 196, 211-12, 216
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entry for GLAW(R)
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "Last Writings - Glorfindel," p. 377-82
The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion by Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull: "Flight to the Ford," p. 194
At the Battle of Sudden Flame in 455-56 of the First Age, Gwindor's brother Gelmir was captured and taken to Angband. In 465, Finrod was slain and Orodreth became the King of Nargothrond.
Orodreth refused to join the Union of Maedhros to oppose Morgoth because he did not trust the sons of Feanor - two of whom had played a role in his brother's death. But Gwindor decided to defy Orodreth because his own brother Gelmir was held prisoner by Morgoth. In 472, Gwindor led a small company from Nargothrond to Hithlum to join the forces of Fingon, the High King of the Noldor.
Fingon and the western army were supposed to await a signal from Maedhros and the eastern army. But Morgoth sent a camouflaged army across Anfauglith to the Ered Wethrin on the border of Hithlum with orders to provoke the western army into a premature attack. Heralds came forward with Gelmir and cut off his hands and feet and then his head.
Gwindor witnessed his brother's death from the walls of Barad Eithel. He was enraged and he rode out with his company and slew his brother's killers. Fingon then ordered the western army to charge, and they advanced across the desert to Angband with Gwindor at the forefront. Gwindor and his company forced their way through the Gate of Angband and killed the guards, but Gwindor was taken prisoner and the rest of the Elves of Nargothrond were slain. Morgoth's forces were victorious in the Battle of Unnumbered Tears.
Gwindor was sent to work in the mines along with other captured Elves who were considered useful for their knowledge of working with metals and gems. He labored in the mines for seventeen years and was weakened in body and spirit. Around 489, Gwindor received a sword from someone who worked in the forges and he used it to attack his guards while he was working. His left hand was cut off, but he was able to escape from Angband through secret tunnels using the blue light of a Feanorian lamp.
Gwindor made his way south across Anfauglith to Dorthonion. There he fell asleep under a tree and was awoken by Beleg, an Elf of Doriath. Beleg was seeking his friend Turin who had been captured by Orcs, and he convinced Gwindor to help rescue him. They found the Turin's captors celebrating in their camp at the edge of Anfauglith and they waited until the Orcs fell asleep and then carried an unconscious Turin away.
Beleg cut Turin's bonds with his sword Anglachel but he accidentally nicked Turin's foot. Turin awoke to see a figure standing over him with a sword and he seized Anglachel and slew Beleg. A flash of lightning revealed to Turin what he had done. Gwindor cowered on the ground and was afraid to look at Turin.
A violent storm came and Gwindor warned Turin to take shelter but he refused. When morning came, Gwindor saw the Orcs leaving. He buried Beleg with his bow Belthronding but kept Beleg's sword and lembas. Gwindor felt courage and strength return to him, and he led Turin away westward. Turin was in a daze and Gwindor had to guard and guide him.
They came to the Pools of Ivrin in 490 and Turin drank the waters and was restored to sanity. Gwindor gave Anglachel to Turin and noted that the sword missed its master too. Turin asked whether Gwindor had seen his father Hurin in Angband, but Gwindor had not though he had heard of Hurin's defiance of Morgoth and the curse that Morgoth had put on Hurin's family.
Gwindor brought Turin with him back to Nargothrond. Turin did not reveal his true identity but he was welcomed because Gwindor vouched for him. The Elves of Nargothrond hardly recognized Gwindor who seemed like an aged Man instead of an immortal Elf.
Gwindor was reunited with Finduilas, whom he called "Faelivrin" after the sunlight on the Pools of Ivrin. Finduilas was happy that Gwindor had returned, but soon she began to fall in love with Turin. Gwindor released Finduilas from any bond to him but warned her that it was unwise for an immortal Elf to love a mortal Man. He also told her Turin's identity and that a dark doom lay on him that would destroy her.
Turin was unaware that Finduilas loved him, but he enjoyed spending time with her. Gwindor noticed this and his demeanor towards Turin became cool. For his part, Turin was angry that Gwindor had revealed his identity.
Turin and Gwindor also disagreed on how best to defend Nargothrond against Morgoth. Gwindor advised that small victories against enemy forces were ultimately useless and that their best defense was to remain hidden until the Valar came to defeat Morgoth. But Turin convinced Orodreth to send forces out openly to drive the enemy from the surrounding lands. A bridge was built across the Narog to Nargothrond to facilitate the passage of troops and armaments. Gwindor fell into dishonor and his counsel was ignored.
Morgoth became aware of Nargothrond's location and he began to amass an army in the Pass of Sirion. In the autumn of 495, the army led by Glaurung the Dragon came south to attack Nargothrond. The Elves of Nargothrond rode forth and met the enemy in battle on the plain of Tumhalad between the Narog and the Ginglith.
Orodreth and most of his people were killed in the Battle of Tumhalad. Gwindor was mortally wounded and Turin carried him away from the battlefield. Before he died, Gwindor told Turin that although he loved him, he regretted ever meeting him because of the loss of Finduilas and Nargothrond. Gwindor then begged him to save Finduilas, saying that Turin's own fate depended on it. But Glaurung deceived Turin into believing his mother and sister were enslaved in Hithlum, and Turin therefore failed to find Finduilas in time to prevent her death.
The meaning of Gwindor is unknown. It may be derived from the Sindarin word gwain meaning "new" and the ending -dor from taur meaning "noble."
The Silmarilllion: "Of the Fifth Battle," p. 188, 190-92; "Of Turin Turambar," p. 207-12
Unfinished Tales: "Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin," p. 37, 51 note 2, 54 note 15; "Narn I Hin Hurin," p. 154-59
The Children of Hurin: "The Battle of Unnumbered Tears," p. 55-56; "The Death of Beleg," passim; "Turin in Nargothrond," passim; "The Fall of Nargothrond," p. 177
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 73, 82-86
Gateway to Sindarin by David Salo, p. 352
Craig Parker as Haldir in the New Line film
On January 15, 3019 of the Third Age, the brothers encountered the Fellowship near the Nimrodel in the eaves of the forest. Haldir was able to speak to the Fellowship, for he knew the Common Language. Haldir welcomed Legolas as one of his kindred from the north and recognized Aragorn as a friend to Galadriel. He was prepared to lead the Fellowship into Lorien, but he hesitated on learning that one of the party was a Dwarf. After consulting with his brothers, Haldir agreed that Gimli could enter if he went blindfolded.
They spent the night on a flet, a platform in the trees. During the night, Haldir and his brothers heard Orcs passing and lured them away from the Fellowship. When he returned to the flet, Haldir saw a strange creature at the base of the tree, which Frodo guessed to be Gollum.
In the morning, Haldir fashioned a rope bridge for the Fellowship to use to cross the Silverlode. When dissension arose among the Fellowship over the need to go blindfolded, Haldir remarked:
"Indeed in nothing is the power of the Dark Lord more clearly shown than in the estrangement that divides all those who still oppose him."The Fellowship eventually agreed to all go blindfolded and Haldir led them through the forest. Haldir learned from Merry Brandybuck that the Grey Havens lay west of the Shire, and he spoke longingly of the Sea but sadly of the time when he and his kin would have to leave Lorien. When news came that the Fellowship's blindfolds could be removed, Haldir apologized to Gimli and welcomed him as the first Dwarf to enter Lorien since the time of Durin.
The Fellowship of the Ring: "Lothlorien," p. 362
After guiding the Fellowship to Caras Galadhon, Haldir returned to his duties guarding the northern borders. But he returned when the Fellowship was about to depart and guided them to the banks of the Silverlode where boats awaited them.
Nothing further is known of Haldir's activities. It is likely that he participated in the defense of Lothlorien when it was attacked by the forces of Dol Guldur in March of 3019. He may have also been a member of the host from Lothlorien that crossed the Anduin and took Dol Guldur after the passing of the Shadow. It is unknown whether Haldir survived the War of the Ring. If he did, he may have eventually passed over the Sea with the rest of his people.
In Peter Jackson's film version of The Lord of the Rings, Haldir led a troop of Elves to the Battle of Helm's Deep, where he fought and died. This does not occur in the book.
The name Haldir is defined as "hidden hero" in the Etymologies (HoME V, p. 386). The element hal means "veiled, hidden" (though it also means "exalted, high"). The element dir is a masculine ending. (Note that there was also a Man of the Edain named Haldir whose name had a different meaning in their language.)
The Fellowship of the Ring: "Lothlorien," passim; "The Mirror of Galadriel," p. 368-70, 374; "Farewell to Lorien," p. 386-88
Appendix B of The Lord of the Rings: "The Tale of Years," p. 375
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for DER and SKAL
Heraldic device of Idril by J.R.R. Tolkien
Around 1495 of the Years of the Trees, Feanor set out in pursuit of Morgoth who had stolen the Silmarils he had made. Many of the Noldor accompanied him and Turgon and his family were among them. But there were not enough ships to take all the Noldor to Middle-earth so Feanor abandoned those he felt were disloyal to him including Fingolfin and Turgon.
Fingolfin and his people continued to Middle-earth on foot across the Grinding Ice in the far north. During the arduous journey, Elenwe and Idril fell through the ice into the Sea. Turgon was able to rescue Idril but Elenwe perished. They arrived in Middle-earth in the year 1 of the First Age.
Turgon settled in Nevrast on the coast of Beleriand and he built the halls of Vinyamar overlooking the Sea. His sister Aredhel and his daughter Idril dwelled there with him. Then Ulmo, Lord of the Waters, led Turgon to the hidden valley of Tumladen and Turgon began the construction of Gondolin. He relocated to Gondolin with his family and many other Elves around 116.
Gondolin was hidden from Morgoth within the Encircling Mountains. No outsiders were permitted to know its location, and few of its people ever left. But Turgon's sister Aredhel became restless and he reluctantly allowed her to depart. Aredhel became lost and was taken in by Eol, the Dark Elf, and she bore him a son named Maeglin.
When Maeglin was full grown, Aredhel returned to Gondolin with him around the year 400. Eol secretly followed them and Turgon said he must remain in Gondolin since he knew its location. Eol claimed he would rather kill Maeglin and himself. He threw a javelin at Maeglin but hit Aredhel instead. Idril and Aredhel asked Turgon to have mercy on Eol, but when Aredhel sickened and died from the wound Turgon ordered Eol to be thrown from the city walls to his death.
Maeglin stood by silently while his father was killed and Idril began to distrust him. Maeglin became enamored of Idril, who was Turgon's heir, but among Elves first cousins did not marry. Idril disliked Maeglin and she found his pursuit of her distasteful. Maeglin rose to high esteem among the people of Gondolin because of his skill as a smith and his courage in the Battle of Unnumbered Tears, but Idril sensed his dark nature.
In 495, a Man named Tuor came to Gondolin guided by Ulmo. Tuor brought a warning from Ulmo that danger was coming and that the Elves should leave Gondolin. Maeglin opposed Tuor and Turgon decided to remain in Gondolin. Tuor and Idril fell in love and married in 502. Their marriage was one of three important unions of Elves and Men, along with Beren and Luthien and Aragorn and Arwen. Idril bore a son named Earendil in 503.
Maeglin was enraged by Idril's marriage to Tuor. One day while mining outside the Encircling Mountains he was captured by Orcs and taken before Morgoth in Angband. Maeglin was threatened with torture and he agreed to reveal Gondolin's location. In exchange Morgoth promised to give him Idril and the lordship of Gondolin once the city was captured.
Idril had a growing sense of foreboding. She had a secret underground passage built leading northward out of the city. Her distrust of Maeglin grew after he returned to Gondolin and he learned nothing of the hidden tunnel.
Morgoth's forces attacked Gondolin in 510. Maeglin seized Idril and Earendil but Tuor fought Maeglin on the city walls and threw him to his death. According to one story, Idril led many people to the secret passage and fought off attackers with a sword (BoLT 2, p. 188). Tuor and Idril and their son escaped with a number of others through the tunnel, but Idril's father Turgon died defending his tower.
The survivors emerged on the plain north of the city and then climbed the Encircling Mountains over the Eagles' Cleft. There they were attacked by a Balrog but Glorfindel sacrificed himself to save them. They journeyed down the Sirion to the Land of Willows and rested there for a time.
In 511, Tuor and Idril led their people to the Havens of Sirion by the Sea. They joined another group of refugees from the ruin of Doriath including Elwing. Earendil later married Elwing and their sons were Elrond and Elros.
Around 525, Tuor became restless because of his increasing age and a longing for the Sea. He built a ship named Earrame, the Sea-Wing. Before they departed, Idril gave Earendil the Elessar which she had saved from Gondolin. Tuor and Idril sailed into the West, and it is said that Tuor was the only mortal Man to be granted the immortal life of the Elves.
Idril is a Sindarin form of the Quenya name Itaril or Itarillë which means "sparkling brilliance" from ita meaning "sparkle" and ril meaning "brilliance." (In an earlier version of the story Idril is said to mean "beloved" with an alternate form Idhril meaning "mortal maiden." - BoLT 2, p. 343)
She was called Celebrindal meaning "Silver-foot" because of "the whiteness of her unshod feet" (HoME XI, p. 200). The Sindarin word celebrin means "like silver in hue or worth" and dal is from tal meaning "foot."
See the family tree of Finwe below.
The Silmarillion: "Of the Flight of the Noldor," p. 90; "Of the Noldor in Beleriand," p. 126; "Of Maeglin," p. 134, 136, 138-39 and passim; "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin," passim; "Of the Voyage of Earendil and the War of Wrath," p. 246, 249, 254; "Akallabeth," p. 261; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entries for celeb and tal
The History of Middle-earth, vol. II, The Book of Lost Tales Part Two: "The Fall of Gondolin," passim; "Appendix: Names in The Lost Tales - Part II," p. 343
The History of Middle-earth, vol. X, Morgoth's Ring: "The Annals of Aman," p. 128
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 44-45, 48; "The Later Quenta Silmarillion," p. 200; "The Tale of Years," p. 346, 348, 351-52
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Shibboleth of Feanor," p. 345-46, 348, 363 notes 40 and 42
Unfinished Tales: "Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin," p. 56 note 31; "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn - The Elessar," p. 249, 251
Appendix A of The Lord of the Rings: "The Numenorean Kings," p. 314
The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien: Letter #153
Lin means "sing" and lind means "fair (especially of voice)" so Lindir may have been a singer himself.
The Fellowship of the Ring: "Many Meetings," p. 249
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," p. 411, entries for LIN and LIND
In the year 20 of the First Age, Mablung and Thingol's minstrel Daeron attended the Feast of Reuniting. This gathering was held by Fingolfin near the Pools of Ivrin and included representatives of the Noldor, the Sindar, and the Green-elves. Thingol was wary of the recent arrival of the Noldor in Middle-earth so he sent only two representatives from Doriath to the Feast.
Around 466, Mablung and other messengers were sent to Himring to ask for help in finding Thingol's daughter Luthien who had accompanied Beren on a quest to steal a Silmaril from Morgoth. On the way, the messengers were attacked in the northern woods of Doriath by Carcharoth, the Wolf of Angband. Carcharoth had bitten off Beren's hand along with the Silmaril and the Wolf was driven mad by the intense heat.
Mablung was the only survivor of the attack. He returned to Menegroth and found that Beren and Luthien had returned. Mablung took part in the Hunting of the Wolf along with Beren, Thingol, Beleg, and Huan the Hound. Carcharoth mortally wounded Beren and was killed by Huan, who also perished. Mablung cut open Carcharoth's belly and retrieved the Silmaril which he placed in Beren's remaining hand before Beren died.
Mablung and Beleg were the only Elves of Doriath to fight in the Battle of Unnumbered Tears in 472. Thingol did not join the Union of Maedhros because he was angry that the sons of Feanor had demanded that he give them the Silmaril. Mablung and Beleg were forbidden to join the forces of the sons of Feanor, so they fought alongside Fingon instead. The battle resulted in a crushing defeat, but both Mablung and Beleg survived. Mablung rescued three Men of the House of Haleth and healed their wounds.
After the battle, Turin son of Hurin was sent to live in Doriath. In 484, Mablung witnessed an altercation between Turin and a counsellor of Thingol named Saeros in the halls of Menegroth. Mablung restrained Turin from attacking Saeros but blamed Saeros for initiating the fight.
The next day Saeros ambushed Turin in the woods and Turin chased him. Mablung did not see the initial attack. He pursued Turin and tried to stop him, but during the chase Saeros accidentally fell to his death. Mablung asked Turin to seek Thingol's pardon but Turin refused and Mablung allowed him to leave Doriath. Mablung and another witness named Nellas spoke on Turin's behalf and Thingol pardoned him, but Turin did not return.
Turin's mother Morwen and sister Nienor later came to live in Doriath. In 496, they learned that Turin had been at Nargothrond when it was captured by Glaurung the Dragon. Morwen set out for Nargothrond and Thingol sent Mablung after her with a company of march-wardens. Nienor joined Mablung's company in disguise and when he discovered her identity she refused to turn back.
Mablung reluctantly escorted Morwen and Nienor to Amon Ethir and set a guard around them while he went ahead to Nargothrond. Glaurung was aware of their arrival and he used his fires to create a disorienting fog from the waters of the River Narog that caused Morwen and Nienor to become separated from their guards. After Glaurung emerged, Mablung entered Nargothrond to search for Turin but did not find him.
Glaurung meanwhile had cast a spell of forgetfulness on Nienor and he taunted Mablung for failing to take care of his charges. Mablung took Nienor by the hand and led her back towards Doriath but one night they were attacked by Orcs and Nienor fled. Mablung was unable to find her and he returned home to report to Thingol that both Morwen and Nienor were lost.
Mablung was ashamed that he had failed to protect Morwen and Nienor. He left Doriath and spent three years searching for them. In 499, Mablung saw Glaurung leave Nargothrond and head for the Forest of Brethil. Mablung learned that Turin was in Brethil and found him there.
Turin had slain Glaurung, but his wife Niniel was dead. When Mablung told him what had happened to Nienor, Turin realized that his wife Niniel was really his sister Nienor whom he had never met. Turin fled from Mablung and killed himself. Mablung was deeply grieved and said: "I also have been meshed in the doom of the Children of Hurin, and thus with words have slain one that I loved." (UT, p. 145)
Mablung returned to Doriath. Around 502, Thingol was slain by Dwarves from Nogrod who had been hired to set the Silmaril in the Nauglamir. Most of the Dwarves were caught and the Silmaril was retrieved. Thingol's wife Melian entrusted the Silmaril to Mablung and he locked it in the treasury. In 503, more Dwarves came from Nogrod and there was a battle in the halls of Menegroth. Mablung was killed before the doors of the treasury and the Dwarves recaptured the Silmaril though it was later retrieved.
Mablung means "heavy hand" in Sindarin from mab meaning "hand" and lunga meaning "heavy." He was called Mablung of the Heavy Hand and Mablung the Hunter. There was also a Man of Gondor named Mablung.
The Silmarillion: "Of the Return of the Noldor," p. 113; "Of Beren and Luthien," p. 184-86; "Of the Fifth Battle," p. 189; "Of Turin Turambar," p. 200, 217-19, 225-26; "Of the Ruin of Doriath," p. 230, 234; Index, entry for Mablung
Unfinished Tales: "Narn I Hin Hurin," p. 80-82, 84, 94, 114-21, 143-45
The Children of Hurin: "Turin in Doriath," p. 87-95; "Turin among the Outlaws," p. 115; "The Journey of Morwen and Nienor to Nargothrond," p. 200-212; "The Death of Turin," p. 253-27
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for MAP and LUG1
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 34, 63, 72, 93-95, 101-2; "The Wanderings of Hurin," p. 257, 281, 303 note 37
Around 316, Aredhel grew restless and left Gondolin. She became separated from her escort and continued on her own. Aredhel eventually wandered into the dark woods of Nan Elmoth where Eol lived. Eol used his enchantments to lure Aredhel to his home deep in the woods.
Eol made Aredhel his wife. She was not entirely unwilling but she was not completely happy either. Eol lived in isolation and darkness and he did not allow Aredhel to go out in daylight. He hated Aredhel's kindred the Noldor - especially the sons of Feanor - and he blamed them for inciting Morgoth to wage war in Beleriand.
When Maeglin was born, Aredhel secretly gave him the name Lomion meaning "Son of Twilight" in Quenya - the language used by the Noldor. When the boy was 12 years old, Eol named him Maeglin meaning "Sharp Glance" because he had piercing eyes and because he was insightful and could intuit the thoughts and purposes of others.
Maeglin grew tall and he had pale skin and black hair. His eyes were dark in color yet keen and bright. He resembled the Noldor in looks but he was like his father in character. Maeglin spoke little but he was able to persuade others to his will.
Eol was a smith and he taught his craft to Maeglin. Together they visited Belegost and Nogrod, the cities of the Dwarves in the Blue Mountains. Maeglin was particularly interested in learning how to mine ores from the mountains.
Maeglin also enjoyed listening to his mother's stories about her people. He was intrigued to learn that his uncle, King Turgon of Gondolin, had no male heir, only a daughter named Idril. Maeglin wanted to visit the sons of Feanor who lived nearby but Eol refused. Maeglin became angry and he no longer visited the Dwarves with his father.
Around 400, Eol went to Nogrod for the midsummer feast. Maeglin persuaded Aredhel to run away with him and return to Gondolin. Eol realized they were gone and followed them. He found the Hidden Way into Gondolin and was captured and brought before Turgon.
Turgon did not allow strangers who found his hidden realm to leave. Eol demanded to be freed and he commanded Maeglin to come with him, but Maeglin did not respond. Turgon told Eol that he must stay or be killed. Eol chose death and he tried to kill Maeglin too but he hit Aredhel with his javelin instead. Aredhel died of a poisoned wound and Eol was thrown from the city walls. Maeglin stood by silently while his father was killed and Eol cursed him and said that Maeglin would die in a similar manner.
Maeglin remained in Gondolin. He discovered rich lodes of metal in the Encircling Mountains around the city. From the mine of Anghabar in the north he obtained a hard iron which he used to make stronger and sharper weapons for the Gondolindrim. Maeglin's own sword was Anguirel which he had stolen from his father and which Eol had made from the ore of a meteorite.
Many skilled craftsmen, miners, and quarrymen joined Maeglin. According to an early version of "The Fall of Gondolin" (BoLT 2, p. 165), Maeglin became the leader of the House of the Mole. Their symbol was a sable mole.
Maeglin rose to high esteem among the Gondolindrim and became a trusted counsellor of King Turgon. But most of all, Maeglin desired Idril, the King's daughter and heir. She was Maeglin's first cousin and among Elves such close kin did not marry. Idril was disturbed by Maeglin's interest in her and she distrusted him since he had watched his father's execution with no objection or emotion.
But as the years passed still Maeglin watched Idril, and waited, and his love turned to darkness in his heart. And he sought the more to have his will in other matters, shirking no toil or burden, if he might thereby have power.Around 458, two young Men named Huor and Hurin became lost near Gondolin and were brought to the city by Eagles sent by Thorondor. They stayed for about a year and then Turgon allowed them to leave as long as they did not reveal the location of Gondolin. Maeglin observed that the law had been relaxed since his father Eol had been given the choice to remain in Gondolin or be killed.
Thus it was in Gondolin; and amid all the bliss of that realm, while its glory lasted, a dark seed of evil was sown.
The Silmarillion: "Of Maeglin," p. 139
When Turgon led an army to the Battle of Unnumbered Tears in 472, he wanted to leave Maeglin in Gondolin as his regent. Maeglin refused and instead marched to war and fought alongside Turgon. Huor and Hurin were at the battle and they urged Turgon to retreat. Huor told Turgon that from the two of them would come the last hope of Elves and Men, and Maeglin overheard this prediction.
Upon his return from the battle, Maeglin built the Gate of Steel which was the seventh and final gate barring the Hidden Way into Gondolin.
In 495, Huor's son Tuor arrived with a message from Ulmo warning Turgon to abandon Gondolin before Morgoth found it. Maeglin advised Turgon not to listen to Tuor. Turgon did not want to leave Gondolin and he rejected the warning but he welcomed Tuor. Maeglin became jealous as Tuor gained Turgon's favor.
Idril fell in love with Tuor and they were married in 502. Maeglin was incensed and his hatred for Tuor increased. Tuor was accepted by the people of Gondolin but Maeglin and his followers secretly opposed him.
Turgon had blocked the Hidden Way into Gondolin after hearing Ulmo's warning and no one was allowed to leave in an effort to prevent Morgoth from finding the city. But Maeglin defied Turgon's orders and continued to mine for metals outside the Encirlcing Mountains. Around 509, Maeglin was captured by Orcs and was brought before Morgoth.
Maeglin was threatened with torture, and although he was not weak or cowardly he was willing to betray Gondolin in order save his own life. He told Morgoth the city's exact location and how it could be attacked. In exchange, Morgoth promised to let Maeglin rule Gondolin as his vassal and to give Maeglin what he most desired - Idril. Maeglin returned to Gondolin to avoid suspicion.
In 510, Morgoth's forces attacked. During the battle, Maeglin seized Idril and her son Earendil. Tuor came to their rescue and he threw Maeglin to his death from the city walls in the same way that his father Eol had been killed. Tuor, Idril, and Earendil escaped with some others but Turgon perished and Gondolin was destroyed. Maeglin's treachery was considered "the most infamous in all the histories of the Elder Days." (Sil., p. 242)
The name Maeglin means "sharp glance" in Sindarin from maeg meaning "sharp, piercing" and glîn meaning "gleam" particularly in reference to the eyes. Eol gave him this name when he was 12 years old because he had piercing eyes and seemed able to read the hearts of others.
Aredhel secretly named him Lómion at birth meaning "son of twilight" in Quenya from lómë meaning "dusk, twilight" and the masculine ending -ion denoting "son of."
See the family tree of Finwe below.
The Silmarillion: "Of the Sindar," p. 92; "Of Maeglin," passim; "Of the Ruin of Beleriand," p. 159; "Of the Fifth Battle," p. 194; "Of Turin Turambar," p. 202; "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin," p. 240-42; Index, entries for Lomion and Maeglin; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entries for glin, lome, and maeg
Unfinished Tales: "Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin," p. 49, 54 note 21, 56 note 31
The Book of Lost Tales, Part Two: "The Fall of Gondolin," p. 164-65, 167-73, 175, 177-78, 189-90, 206, 210-13, 220
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 47-48, 58, 76, 121-23, 169; "The Wanderings of Hurin," p. 302 note 30; "Maeglin," passim; "The Tale of Years," p. 348, 351; "Quendi and Eldar," p. 409
Maglor was one of the greatest singers and minstrels among the Elves, second only to Daeron. He had a strong voice that could be heard from afar and he was skilled at playing the harp. He composed many songs including Noldolante, the Fall of the Noldor, which he wrote about the disastrous quest for the Silmarils.
Feanor made three jewels called the Silmarils in which he captured the light of the Two Trees of Valinor. In 1495, Morgoth stole the Silmarils and fled to Middle-earth. Feanor vowed to retrieve the Silmarils at all costs, and his sons all swore the Oath of Feanor which had terrible consequences for them and their kindred.
Feanor and his sons set out for Middle-earth and many of the Noldor accompanied them. But the Teleri refused to give them ships and Feanor decided to take them by force. Many of the Teleri died at the hands of Feanor and his sons and their followers. Maglor felt remorse and sorrow for his part in the Kinslaying.
Mandos appeared before the Noldor and warned them that if they did not turn back, they would be exiled from the Undying Lands and would endure grief, hardship, and betrayal. Some of the Noldor repented, but Feanor and his sons and many others continued onward and they fell under the Doom of Mandos.
There were not enough ships to carry all the Noldor to Middle-earth so Feanor abandoned those he felt were disloyal to him including his brother Fingolfin. When the ships landed at the Firth of Drengist, Feanor burned them instead of sending them back for the others. Fingolfin and his people crossed the Grinding Ice on foot.
Feanor and his followers arrived in Middle-earth in 1497 and camped in Mithrim. Morgoth sent an army to attack them, but the Elves were victorious in the Battle-under-Stars. Feanor was determined to overthrow Morgoth and reclaim the Silmarils. He marched on Angband but became separated from his army. Balrogs surrounded Feanor and after a long struggle he was mortally wounded by Gothmog.
The sons of Feanor carried their father back toward Mithrim but he died near Eithel Sirion. With his last words, Feanor made his sons promise to keep their oath to recover the Silmarils.
Morgoth sent a message to the sons of Feanor claiming that he would return one of the Silmarils. Although they knew it was a trap, Maedhros was captured and he was chained to a pinnacle of Thangorodrim. Maedhros was rescued by Fingon, son of Fingolfin, who had arrived in Middle-earth as the First Age began.
The sons of Feanor relocated to East Beleriand around the year 7 of the First Age. Maglor settled in the land between the Little Gelion and the Greater Gelion. This region was exposed to the north by a break in the hills between Dorthonion and the Blue Mountains which became known as Malgor's Gap. Maedhros built a stronghold on Himring on the west side of the Gap and Caranthir fortified Mount Rerir on the east side.
Maglor and Maedhros represented the sons of Feanor at the Feast of Reuniting convened by Fingolfin in the year 20.
In 60, Morgoth sent an army to invade Beleriand. Orcs came through Maglor's Gap in the east as well as the Pass of Sirion in the west. But Maedhros and Fingolfin led their forces to defeat the Orcs in the Glorious Battle. Afterwards, Maglor's Gap was patrolled by cavalry to guard against another invasion.
But in 455, Morgoth once again launched an invasion of Beleriand and this time he succeeded. In the Battle of Sudden Flame, Glaurung the Dragon led an army through Maglor's Gap and destroyed Maglor's lands. Maglor joined Maedhros on Himring and they were able to defend the citadel against capture. But Caranthir was driven from Mount Rerir and Celegorm and Curufin were forced to flee from Himlad south of Himring.
Men called Easterlings entered Beleriand in 463. The Easterling chieftain Bor and his sons Borlad, Borlach, and Borthand made an alliance with Maedhros and Maglor. Another chieftain named Ulfang and his sons Ulfast, Ulwarth, and Uldor joined forces with Caranthir.
In the Battle of Unnumbered Tears in 472, Maglor was with the eastern army led by Maedhros. They were supposed to launch a coordinated attack with the western army under Fingon, but they were delayed by Uldor who was secretly in league with Morgoth. When the eastern army finally joined the fray, Ulfang's sons switched sides and tried to attack Maedhros' position. But Maglor slew Uldor while Bor's sons slew Ulfast and Ulwarth.
Morgoth's forces were victorious and the remnants of the eastern army withdrew from the battlefield. The sons of Feanor retreated into East Beleriand and became scattered. Maedhros and Maglor abandoned Himring.
Around 506, the sons of Feanor learned that Dior of Doriath had one of the Silmarils in his possession. They sent a message to Doriath staking their claim to the Silmaril but there was no reply. Celegorm rallied his brothers to attack the Elves of Doriath in an act reminiscent of the Kinslaying. Celegorm, Curufin, and Caranthir all died in the attack along with Dior and many of his people. But some Elves of Doriath escaped with the Silmaril and Dior's daughter Elwing and they fled to the Havens of Sirion.
The remaining sons of Feanor hesitated to attack the refugees at the Havens of Sirion. But Elwing would not yield the Silmaril and Feanor's sons felt compelled by the oath they had sworn, so in 538 they once again killed their own kin in an attempt to fulfill it. During the assault, Amrod and Amras were slain.
Elwing escaped into the Sea with the Silmaril. Maglor took pity on her children Elrond and Elros who had been left behind. He spared their lives and took care of them for a time.
Elwing brought the Silmaril to her husband Earendil who was at Sea in his ship Vingilot. Earendil sailed to the Undying Lands to seek the help of the Valar against Morgoth. He and his ship were then placed in the heavens as a star. When the Star of Earendil first appeared around 542, Maedhros and Maglor realized that its light came from one of the Silmarils. Maglor was content that the Silmaril was safe from evil and could be seen by all.
But two Silmarils remained in Morgoth's possession. After the Host of the Valar defeated Morgoth in the War of Wrath around 587, the Silmarils were taken for safekeeping by Eonwe - the herald of the Vala Manwe. Despite all that had happened, Maedhros and Maglor still felt compelled by their oath and they sent a message to Eonwe.
Eonwe refused to give them the Silmarils because of all the evil they had done in their quest to claim them. He intended to take the Silmarils back to the Undying Lands and he told Maedhros and Maglor to return with him to face the judgment of the Valar. Maglor was willing to do so because he was saddened by the things he had done and he felt that breaking the oath was the lesser evil.
But Maedhros finally convinced Maglor that they must make another attempt to gain the Silmarils. They sneaked into Eonwe's camp in disguise and killed the guards. Eonwe spared their lives and they fled with the jewels. Each brother took one, but the Silmarils tormented them with terrible pain. Maedhros threw himself into a fiery chasm and perished and the Silmaril was lost beneath the earth.
Maglor cast the last Silmaril into the Sea. He never returned to his people. Instead, he wandered the shores of the Sea singing laments of pain and regret. His ultimate fate is unknown.
The name Maglor is a Sindarin form of the Quenya name Makalaurë (Macalaurë) given to him by his mother. In one source (HoME V, p. 371), Makalaurë is defined as "Gold-cleaver" from makil meaning "sword" and laurë meaning "gold." But in another source (HoME XII, p. 353) it is interpreted as "forging gold" in reference to the golden sound of Maglor's harping.
Maglor's father-name, given to him by Feanor, was Kanafinwë (Canafinwë). The first part is interpreted as "strong-voiced" or "commanding" from kan meaning "command, order." The second part - Finwë - was the name of Feanor's father. A short form of the name was Káno (Cáno).
See the family tree of Finwe below.
The Silmarillion: "Of Eldamar," p. 60; "Of the Flight of the Noldor," p. 83-90; "Of the Return of the Noldor," p. 106-108, 113, 115, 117; "Of Beleriand and Its Realms," p. 124; "Of the Coming of Men into the West," p. 140; "Of the Ruin of Beleriand," p. 153, 157; "Of Beren and Luthien," p. 183; "Of the Fifth Battle," p. 193; "Of the Ruin of Doriath," p. 236-37; "Of the Voyage of Earendil and the War of Wrath," p. 246-47, 250, 252-54
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entry for MAK
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 34, 53, 64, 74; "The Tale of Years," p. 345
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "Of Dwarves and Men," p. 318; "The Shibboleth of Feanor," p. 352-53, 358 note 22, 361-62 note 36
Mithrellas was given shelter by a Man of Numenorean descent named Imrazorwho lived in Belfalas. She married Imrazor and they had two children - a son named Galador and a daughter named Gilmith. One night, Mithrellas slipped away and was never seen by her husband again. She may have gone to wander in the woods, or she may have sought the havens to depart over the Sea, although Edhellond had apparently been abandoned by the Elves by that time.
Mithrellas' son Galador was the first Lord of Dol Amroth. His descendants thus had Elven blood, as was noted by Legolas when he met Prince Imrahil.
The name Mithrellas may be composed of mithren meaning "grey" and las meaning "leaf."
The Return of the King: "The Siege of Gondor," p. 98; "The Last Debate," p. 148
Unfinished Tales: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn," p. 248; "Cirion and Eorl," p. 316 note 39
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for LAS and MITH
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Heirs of Elendil," p. 220-22
Around 473 of the First Age, Turin came to Doriath. He had been sent there by his mother Morwen after his father Hurin did not return from the Battle of Unnumbered Tears. Turin was eight years old at the time. Melian - the wife of King Thingol of Doriath - asked Nellas to look after Turin when he wandered into the woods.
Nellas taught Turin the ways of the woods as well as the ancient dialect of Sindarin that was used in Doriath. Nellas was older than Turin in years but she was like a child at heart and she and Turin played together. Turin was happy in her company for a while, but as he grew to manhood his friendship with Nellas faded. Nellas continued to watch over Turin secretly.
One day in 484, Nellas sat in a tree to watch Turin leave the halls of Menegroth. Turin was attacked by an Elf named Saeros who had a grudge against him. Saeros was chased through the woods by Turin and fell to his death. Nellas was persuaded by Beleg - the chief of Thingol's march-wardens - to come to Menegroth despite her fear of the caves and the crowds of people. She told Thingol that Saeros had intiated the attack and Thingol decided to pardon Turin. But Turin had already left Doriath and he did not return.
When Beleg later found Turin and told him that Nellas had borne witness for him, Turin could not even remember who Nellas was. Nellas never saw Turin again. King Thingol was slain around 502 and Doriath was ruined soon afterwards, but it is not known what became of Nellas.
The meaning of the name Nellas is uncertain. It appears to contain the elements nel meaning "three" and las meaning "leaf." It could be related to the word neldor meaning "beech" and Neldoreth, the beech woods of northern Doriath where Nellas wandered.
Unfinished Tales: "Narn I Hin Hurin," p. 76, 83-84, 95-96
The Children of Hurin: "Turin in Doriath," p. 80-81, 93-95; "Turin among the Outlaws," p. 117-18
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for LAS and NEL
The Silmarillion: "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entry for neldor
Nimloth married Dior - the son of Thingol's daughter Luthien and Beren - around 497 of the First Age. Nimloth went to live with Dior in a house near the waterfall Lanthir Lamath on the River Adurant in the region of Ossiriand. Their sons Elured and Elurin were born around 500 and their daughter Elwing was born around 503.
Thingol was killed by Dwarves who coveted the Silmaril in his possession. Dior was Thingol's heir and he became the King of Doriath. He and his family returned to Doriath around 503.
At Yule of 506 to 507, Doriath was attacked by the sons of Feanor, who had sworn an oath to recover the Silmarils made by their father. Nimloth and Dior were killed. Their young sons Elured and Elurin were taken into the woods and abandoned to an unknown fate. But some Elves of Doriath escaped and they took Elwing and the Silmaril with them. Elwing later married Earendil and was the mother of Elrond and Elros.
The name Nimloth means "white blossom" in Sindarin from nim meaning "white" and loth meaning "flower."
See the family tree of Thingol below.
The Silmarillion: "Of the Ruin of Doriath," p. 234-36; "Appendix - Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names," entries for loth and nim
Unfinished Tales: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn," p. 233, 266
The History of Middle-earth, vol XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Tale of Years," p. 349-51
Nimrodel loved Amroth, the King of Lothlorien, but she refused to marry him. Amroth was a Sindarin Elf, and Nimrodel was unhappy that many Sindarin and Noldorin Elves had come to Lothlorien because she believed that they exposed her peaceful woods to the war and unrest of Middle-earth. She preferred to live apart from them and maintain the ways of the Wood-elves.
Nimrodel lived alone near the river that later bore her name. Her home was near the northwestern border of Lothlorien. She may have dwelled in a grotto - or small cave - by a waterfall, but when Orcs from the nearby Misty Mountains began encroaching on the forest she may have started living high in the branches of a tree. This may have inspired the creation of flets - platforms used as dwelling places in the trees by the Elves of Lothlorien.
In 1980 of the Third Age, a Balrog awoke under the Misty Mountains, and the next year the Dwarves abandoned their realm of Khazad-dum which became a place of evil called Moria. Nimrodel was distraught and she fled alone from Lothlorien. She reached the eaves of Fangorn Forest but she found the trees there frightening and some of them - which may have been Huorns - moved to prevent her from entering the forest.
Amroth followed Nimrodel and found her near Fangorn. She promised to marry him if he could bring her to a land of peace. Amroth agreed to leave Lothlorien and go with Nimrodel to the Undying Lands. They set out for the Elf-haven of Edhellond on the Bay of Belfalas in the south. They were accompanied by other Silvan Elves from Lothlorien. One of Nimrodel's companions was an Elf-maiden named Mithrellas, who later wed the forefather of the Princes of Dol Amroth.
When they reached the White Mountains, Nimrodel and Amroth became separated. Amroth reached Edhellond and waited for Nimrodel aboard their ship, but a storm swept the ship out into the bay. Amroth leaped overboard trying to return to land to find Nimrodel, but he drowned in the rough waters.
Nimrodel wandered for a while in the mountains until she came to the River Gilrain, which reminded her of the stream she had lived near in Lothlorien. She sat by a pool, listening to the water and looking at the stars reflected in it, and her heart was lightened. Nimrodel fell into a long, deep sleep. When she awoke, she came down from the mountains into Belfalas, but the ship was long gone and Amroth was lost. What became of Nimrodel afterwards is not known.
It was said that in springtime her voice could be heard singing in the falls of the River Nimrodel in Lothlorien, while the voice of Amroth came up the Anduin on the south wind.
Nimrodel means "Lady of the White Grotto," probably in reference to her dwelling place near the waterfall. The name is of Silvan origin adapted to Sindarin. The element nim means "white" and rod means "cave, grotto."
The Fellowship of the Ring: "Lothlorien," p. 353-55
The Return of the King: "The Siege of Gondor," p. 98; "The Last Debate," p. 148
Appendix F of The Lord of the Rings: "The Languages and Peoples of the Third Age," p. 405 note 1
Unfinished Tales: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn - Amroth and Nimrodel," p. 240-48, 255, 257, 261; "Cirion and Eorl," p. 316 note 39; and Index entry (definition of Nimrodel)
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entries for NIK-W and ROD
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Heirs of Elendil," p. 221-23
Around 1495, Morgoth killed Finwe - the father of Finarfin, Fingolfin, and Feanor - and stole the Silmarils. Feanor urged the Noldor to pursue Morgoth to Middle-earth and he swore an Oath to retrieve the Silmarils at any cost. Finarfin advised his kindred to be cautious and Orodreth supported his father, but in the end they followed Feanor as part of the host of Fingolfin.
The Teleri refused to give ships to Feanor for the voyage so he attacked them and seized the ships. After the Kinslaying, Mandos appeared to the Noldor and warned them that terrible things would come to pass if they did not turn back and repent. Finarfin did so, but Orodreth and his brothers continued on largely because of their friendship with Fingolfin's sons, and Galadriel went with them as well. Orodreth and his siblings had not taken part in the Kinslaying but they still fell under the Doom of Mandos.
Feanor abandoned Fingolfin's host when there were not enough ships to take them all to Middle-earth. Fingolfin's host was forced to make an arduous journey across the Grinding Ice. They arrived in Middle-earth at the beginning of the First Age.
Orodreth's brother Finrod built the watchtower of Minas Tirith on Tol Sirion in the River Sirion. Finrod then began the construction of Nargothrond in 52 of the First Age, and after he relocated there Orodreth became the warden of Minas Tirith. It was his responsibility to guard the Pass of Sirion and prevent Morgoth's forces from entering Beleriand that way.
Orodreth successfully defended the pass during the Battle of Sudden Flame in 455. But two years later in 457, Morgoth's lieutenant Sauron attacked Tol Sirion. Sauron used his powers as a sorcerer to overcome the defenders of Minas Tirith with feelings of terror. Sauron captured Minas Tirith and Orodreth and his people fled to Nargothrond. According to one story (HoME XI, p. 54), Orodreth was helped by two of Feanor's sons, Celegorm and Curufin, who came to Nargothrond with him.
In 465, Finrod left Nargothrond to accompany Beren on the quest to steal a Silmaril from Morgoth. He gave his crown to Orodreth and entrusted the rule of Nargothrond to him. But Celegorm and Curufin plotted to take control of Finrod's realm themselves.
Celegorm and Curufin encountered Luthien on her way to help Beren and they brought her back to Nargothrond and imprisoned her. They hoped to increase their power by forcing a marriage between Luthien and Celegorm. They persuaded the people of Nargothrond to their side and Orodreth was unable to stop them.
But Luthien was able to escape with the help of Celegorm's hound Huan. Luthien and Huan found Beren imprisoned by Sauron on Tol Sirion and they rescued him, but Finrod had perished. News of Finrod's death reached Nargothrond and the people turned against Celegorm and Curufin because the brothers had known of Finrod's captivity and did nothing. Orodreth did not kill Celegorm and Curufin because of the curse of Mandos after the Kinslaying, but he expelled the brothers from Nargothrond.
Orodreth became the second King of Nargothrond. He was a wise ruler and the people gave him their loyalty. Orodreth maintained close ties with King Thingol of Doriath who was the uncle of his mother Earwen. He was like-minded with Thingol on matters of defense, preferring to keep his realm hidden from Morgoth's forces rather than marching to war against them.
Orodreth refused to have any dealings with the sons of Feanor. When Maedhros formed a Union to opposed Morgoth in 469, Orodreth did not join. He sent no forces from Nargothrond to the Battle of Unnumbered Tears in 472, though a prince of Nargothrond named Gwindor led forth a small company against Orodreth's orders because his brother Gelmir had been captured in the Battle of Sudden Flame.
At the Battle of Unnumbered Tears, Gwindor was lured into launching a premature attack at the sight of his brother Gelmir being executed by Morgoth's forces. The battle was lost and Gwindor was taken prisoner.
A Man named Turin came to live in the caves under Amon Rudh in the late 480s. Turin was joined by Beleg, an Elf of Doriath, and together they defended the surrounding area from the enemy. The lands between the Teiglin and the edge of Doriath became known as the Land of Bow and Helm after Beleg's bow Belthronding and Turin's Dragon-helm.
Some Elves of Nargothrond wanted to join forces with Turin and Beleg, but Orodreth still refused to wage open war on Morgoth. He told Turin to keep the fighting away from Nargothrond but he offered to help him in other ways.
In 489, Turin was captured by Orcs. Beleg pursued the Orcs and met Gwindor who had escaped from Angband. Beleg freed Turin, but Turin mistook his friend for one of the enemy and killed him. In 490, Gwindor returned to Nargothrond with Turin, who concealed his identity from Orodreth.
Turin gained Orodreth's favor and when his true identity was revealed Orodreth honored him. On Turin's advice, Orodreth changed his defensive strategy from secrecy and stealth to open warfare, and the Elves of Nargothrond drove Morgoth's servants out of the surrounding lands. Orodreth also agreed to build a bridge across the Narog to the gates of Nargothrond. In these matters Orodreth rejected the warnings of Gwindor.
In 495, Cirdan sent two messengers named Gelmir and Arminas with a warning from Ulmo, Lord of Waters, urging Orodreth to cast down the bridge and withdraw behind the gates of Nargothrond. But although Orodreth was troubled, he followed Turin's counsel and left the bridge standing.
In the autumn of 495, Nargothrond was attacked by an army led by Glaurung the Dragon. Orodreth led his forces to meet them with Turin at his side. The Elves were outnumbered and they were forced to retreat to the field of Tumhalad between the Narog and the Ginglith. Orodreth was killed in the Battle of Tumhalad and his army was defeated.
The inhabitants of Nargothrond were all killed, driven out, or enslaved. Orodreth's daughter Finduilas was captured and slain. Glaurung occupied Nargothrond, and though the Dragon was killed by Turin four years later, the realm of Nargothrond never arose again.
In late writings, Tolkien apparently intended to make Orodreth the son of Angrod and the father of Gil-galad. However, this would have impacted a number of other characters and storylines and therefore the change was not made in the published Silmarillion.
The meaning of Orodreth is uncertain. It includes the word orod meaning "mountain" but the second element is unclear. According to one source (HoME XII, p. 350), his name was originally Rodreth in Sindarin which was altered to Orodreth because of his love of mountains. The Quenya form of Rodreth is given as Artaresto. The Quenya word arta means "exalted, lofty" and the Sindarin rod appears to have a similar meaning.
Orodreth was Warden of Minas Tirith. He became the second King of Nargothrond and as such he was also called the Lord of Narog.
There was also a Steward of Gondor named Orodreth.
See the family trees of Finwe and Thingol below.
The Silmarillion: "Of Eldamar," p. 61; "Of the Flight of the Noldor," p. 83, 88; "Of Beleriand and Its Realms," p. 120; "Of the Noldor in Beleriand," p. 128-30; "Of the Ruin of Beleriand," p. 156-57; "Of Beren and Luthien," p. 170, 173, 176; "Of the Fifth Battle," p. 188; "Of Turin Turambar," p. 209-12, 216
Unfinished Tales: "Narn I Hin Hurin," p. 153, 155, 157-62; "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn," p. 255 note 20
The History of Middle-earth, vol. X, Morgoth's Ring: "The Annals of Aman," p. 93, 106, 112; "The Later Quenta Silmarillion," p. 177, 182
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 36, 54, 63, 66-67, 73, 82-85, 92, 125, 133-34, 137-39, 141-42, 149
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XII, The Peoples of Middle-earth: "The Shibboleth of Feanor," p. 349-51, 354
The Children of Hurin: "Introduction," p. 23-24; "The Land of Bow and Helm," p. 145; "Turin in Nargothrond," passim; "The Fall of Nargothrond," passim; "The Coming of Turin to Brethil," p. 194-95
Oropher was said to be a Sindarin Elf from Doriath, the realm of King Thingol in Beleriand. After the destruction of Beleriand at the end of the First Age, Oropher and some followers came to the great forest east of the Anduin called Greenwood the Great where many Wood-elves lived. Oropher and his followers wanted to return to the simple woodland life, which they believed was the natural way of life for Elves. They merged with the Wood-elves and adopted their customs and learned their language. Oropher became the King of the Woodland Realm.
In the early part of the Second Age, Oropher and his people lived near the southwestern edge of Greenwood around the hill called Amon Lanc. But as Sauron grew in power in Mordor south of the forest, Oropher began to move his people northward. He may also have been trying to distance his realm from the realms of Lothlorien and Khazad-dum across the Anduin. The Wood-Elves settled in the fir-covered mountains of Emyn Duir north of the Old Forest Road. The population of Elves increased and they roamed far and wide throughout the forest.
Oropher and his people did not want to get involved in the affairs of Middle-earth, but Oropher realized that his people would never have peace if Sauron was allowed to expand his power unchecked. So when the Last Alliance was formed to confront Sauron, Oropher gathered a large army of his people to join them.
The Elves of the Woodland Realm fought in the Battle of Dagorlad in 3434. Oropher's soldiers were valiant but they were poorly equipped for battle and two-thirds of them were killed. Oropher kept his forces independent of the supreme command of Gil-galad. When the assault began on the Black Gate, Oropher rushed forward without waiting for Gil-galad's signal and he was killed. After the War of the Last Alliance, Thranduil returned home and became King of the Woodland Realm.
The name Oropher may mean "high beech" from oro meaning "high" and pher meaning "beech."
Unfinished Tales: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn - Appendix B: The Sindarin Princes of the Silvan Elves," p. 258-59; "The Disaster of the Gladden Fields," p. 280-81 note 14
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," ORO and PHER
Orophin was the brother of Haldir and Rumil.
He and his brothers were wardens on the borders of Lothlorien. Orophin's
language was Sindarin as it was spoken in Lothlorien and he knew little
of the Common Speech.
On January 15, 3019 of the Third Age, the brothers encountered the Fellowship near the Nimrodel in the eaves of the forest. They led the Fellowship to their flet. During the night a troop of Orcs passed and the brothers lured them away. Orophin then went with great speed to alert the other Elves of Lothlorien of the Orcs' intrusion.
Jason Secto as Orophin
in the New Line film
Rumil was the brother of Haldir and Orophin.
He and his brothers were wardens on the borders of Lothlorien. Rumil's
language was Sindarin as it was spoken in Lothlorien and he knew little
of the Common Speech.
On January 15, 3019 of the Third Age, the brothers encountered the Fellowship near the Nimrodel in the eaves of the forest. They led the Fellowship to their flet. During the night a troop of Orcs passed and the brothers lured them away.
While Orophin went to warn the other Elves of Lothlorien of the Orcs' intrusion, Rumil accompanied Haldir and the Fellowship to the banks of the Silverlode and helped them cross using ropes. Rumil remained on the west bank and returned to the Nimrodel to keep watch.
Jørn Benzon as Rumil
in the New Line film
By some accounts, it was Thranduil who founded the Woodland Realm; by other accounts it was Oropher. According to the latter accounts, Thranduil and Oropher fought in the War of the Last Alliance. Oropher was killed in battle, and after the defeat of Sauron in 3441 of the Second Age Thranduil led his remaining forces back to Greenwood. Around 1050 of the Third Age, a shadow fell on Greenwood and it came to be known as Mirkwood. Great Spiders and other creatures came to dwell in Mirkwood, and at Dol Guldur a stronghold was built by an evil force that was later discovered to be Sauron.
Thranduil and his people retreated to the northeastern corner of Mirkwood and built their halls near the Forest River in underground caverns guarded by great gates. Despite the dark presence in Mirkwood, the Wood-Elves still loved the forest. In the autumn, King Thranduil wore a crown of red leaves and berries in his golden hair, and in the spring his crown was made of woodland flowers. He and his people enjoyed hunting and feasting among the trees.
One day in 2941, Thranduil and a company of Elves were feasting in the woods when they were interrupted by a company of Dwarves and one Hobbit. The Elves relocated but the intruders followed them. On the third occasion the Elves captured the leader of the Dwarves, Thorin Oakenshield, and brought him before King Thranduil. Thorin was imprisoned when he would not reveal what he was doing in Mirkwood and the Elvish sword Orcrist was taken from him. His twelve Dwarf companions were caught soon after. Bilbo Baggins evaded capture by using his magic Ring and later managed to help his companions escape in barrels down the Forest River.
After the death of Smaug the Dragon, word came to Thranduil from the birds of the woods and from the messengers he had sent out after the Dwarves' escape. The King set out toward the Lonely Mountain with a company of Elves armed with bows and spears. En route they met messengers from Bard of Lake-town and went to the aid of the Lake-men whose town had been destroyed. The Elves gave them food and helped them build shelters against the oncoming winter. Then Thranduil and Bard led their armies to the foot of the Lonely Mountain, where they were surprised to find Thorin and company still alive.
Thorin was not interested in listening to Bard's claims upon a share of the treasure, and he was particularly displeased to see Thranduil who had imprisoned him. He sent for help from his cousin Dain Ironfoot and was prepared to fight, but then Bilbo brought the Arkenstone to Bard and Thranduil to use to negotiate with Thorin. Thranduil was impressed with Bilbo and urged him to remain and avoid Thorin's wrath, but Bilbo declined.
Thorin agreed to pay one-fourteenth share of the treasure in exchange for the Arkenstone, but then Dain's forces arrived. Thranduil was reluctant to start a war over gold. Then the Orcs and Wargs from the Misty Mountains came and Thranduil, Bard, and Dain agreed to join forces to fight them in the Battle of the Five Armies. Thranduil's forces were positioned on the southern spur of the Mountain, and they were the first to charge. Many Elves were killed and things looked grim until Bilbo - who had taken his stand among the Elves - cried out that the Eagles were coming. Then the tide was turned and the battle was won.
After the battle, Thranduil laid Orcrist on Thorin's tomb, where it was said to glow in warning when foes approached. Thranduil received the Emeralds of Girion from Bard and Bilbo gave Thranduil a necklace of silver and pearls. Thranduil named the Hobbit "Elf friend."
On March 21, 3018, Aragorn brought Gollum to Thranduil in Mirkwood to be held prisoner. Gollum was guarded day and night, but the Elves took pity on him and allowed him to climb a tree that stood alone. One night in June of 3018, Gollum refused to come down. The Wood-Elves were then attacked by Orcs and Gollum escaped in the confusion. Thranduil sent his son Legolas to Rivendell to inform Elrond, and Legolas was selected as one of the nine members of the Company of the Ring.
During the War of the Ring, Mirkwood was invaded by Sauron's minions and the woods were set on fire. Thranduil's Elves fought them, and on March 15, 3019, they repelled the forces that attacked them from Dol Guldur. In the middle of the forest on April 6, Thranduil met Celeborn, whose forces from Lothlorien had taken Dol Guldur. The Shadow was lifted, and they renamed the forest Eryn Lasgalen, the Wood of Greenleaves. Thranduil's realm was in the northern part of Eryn Lasgalen, north of the mountains in the forest, and there the Wood-Elves remained untroubled for many years.
The name Thranduil means "vigourous spring" from the Sindarin tharan meaning "vigourous" and ethuil meaning spring. This definition is from an unfinished commentary by J.R.R. Tolkien on his invented languagues published in Parma Eldalamberon 17.
In The Hobbit, Thranduil is referred to only as the Elvenking. Thranduil was also called King of the Woodland Realm and the King of the Elves of Northern Mirkwood.
The Hobbit: "Flies and Spiders," p. 162-65, 178-81; "Barrels out of Bond," p. 182-85 and passim; "Fire and Water," p. 265-67; "The Gathering of the Clouds," p. 275-78; "A Thief in the Night," p. 282-84; "The Clouds Burst," p. 286, 291, 293-97; "The Return Journey," p. 303, 305-6
The Fellowship of the Ring: "The Council of Elrond," p. 253, 268-69
Appendix B of The Lord of the Rings: "The Tale of Years," p. 363, 366, 368, 372, 375
Unfinished Tales: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn, Appendix B: The Sindarin Princes of the Silvan Elves," p. 257-60
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entry for TUY
Parma Eldalamberon 17 Sindarin Corpus by David Giraudeau
Voronwe by Anke Eissmann
Aranwe married a Sindarin Elf from the nearby coastal region of the Falas. She was a kinswoman of Cirdan the Shipwright. Their son Voronwe had the piercing grey eyes of the Noldor, and he also inherited a love of the Sea from his mother's people.
In 116, Turgon established the realm of Gondolin and relocated there with his people, including Voronwe. Gondolin remained hidden from Morgoth for several centuries. But Turgon was troubled and he tried to send messengers to seek the help of the Valar, first in 455 and again in 473 after the Battle of Unnumbered Tears and the destruction of the Havens of Brithombar and Eglarest.
Voronwe was one of messengers dispatched in 473 to the Isle of Balar where Cirdan and other refugees from Brithombar and Eglarest lived. Voronwe was chosen because of his kinship with Cirdan and his youth and affinity for the Sea. He had not travelled much outside Nevrast and Gondolin. On the journey south, Voronwe tarried for a while in Nan-tathren, the Land of Willows, and he briefly forgot about the Sea.
Then Voronwe recalled his mission - possibly at the prompting of Ulmo, Lord of Waters - and he built a raft of willow boughs to travel down the Sirion to the Isle of Balar. He was the last of the messengers to arrive. Six of the seven ships built by Cirdan for the quest were finished and they embarked, but they did not reach their destination and were never seen again.
While the seventh and greatest ship was completed, Voronwe spent time learning ship-lore. Around 488, Voronwe set sail in search of the Undying Lands. But the way westward remained hidden by the will of the Valar and Voronwe's crew suffered many hardships.
"But the Great Sea is terrible ... and it hates the Noldor, for it works the Doom of the Valar. Worse things it holds than to sink into the abyss and so perish: loathing, and loneliness, and madness; terror of wind and tumult, and silence and shadows where all hope is lost and all living shapes pass away. And many shores evil and strange it washes, and many islands of danger and fear infest it."The ship was at Sea for seven years. The crew survived on lembas, the waybread of the Elves. Finally they decided to turn back to Middle-earth. In the autumn of 495, they came within sight of Mount Taras in Nevrast, but then a terrible storm arose. The ship was broken apart by great waves and lightning bolts and all of Voronwe's crew perished.
Unfinished Tales: "Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin," p. 35
Voronwe himself was spared by Ulmo who sent a gentle wave to bring Voronwe to dry land. He came ashore in Nevrast near Vinyamar where he had lived long ago. He sat dazed for about an hour looking out to Sea and then he was hailed by a Man named Tuor.
Tuor was seeking Gondolin and needed a guide, and it was for this purpose that Voronwe had been rescued by Ulmo. Ulmo had told Turgon long ago that he would send a messenger from Nevrast in time of need, and Tuor claimed that Ulmo had appeared before him and had given him the task. Tuor bore the arms that Turgon had left in Vinyamar as tokens to identify the messenger.
Voronwe had hoped to live in peace with Cirdan's people or in Nan-tathren. But when he learned that his people's doom approached, he agreed to take Tuor to Gondolin. It was before mid-October of 495 when they set out. They travelled by night, heading eastward alongside the Ered Wethrin. The Fell Winter began in November and it was bitterly cold.
They came to Eithel Ivrin and found that the spring had been defiled. Voronwe recognized the tracks of the Dragon Glaurung. A Man passed them without stopping and they did not realize that it was Tuor's cousin Turin.
Voronwe and Tuor continued on through snow and ice and their supply of lembas ran low. When they came to the Highway near the River Sirion, they found a company of Orcs camped in the middle of the road. Tuor covered Voronwe in the protective cloak given to him by Ulmo and they crossed the Highway without being seen though the Orcs heard and smelled them.
The next day they crossed the Sirion at the Ford of Brithiach with the help of the Great Eagles who flew overhead and kept the Orcs away. Voronwe then led Tuor to the Dry River which formed the Hidden Way into Gondolin. They came to the foot of the Encircling Mountains on November 18 after a journey of 37 days.
At dawn on November 19, they entered the tunnel of the Hidden Way and encountered the Outer Guard. The Captain of the Guard was Elemmakil who was a friend of Voronwe. But Voronwe had broken the laws of Gondolin by revealing the location of the Hidden Realm to a stranger, especially a Man. Elemmakil determined that Voronwe should be brought before King Turgon, and he deferred judgment on Tuor's fate to Ecthelion, the Warden of the Great Gate, who permitted Tuor to enter Gondolin.
Turgon accepted that Tuor was indeed a messenger from Ulmo and welcomed him. But Turgon did not heed his warning that doom was at hand and that Gondolin should be abandoned. In 510, Morgoth's forces attacked and destroyed Gondolin.
Although Tuor did not save Gondolin, his journey to the city under Voronwe's guidance was not in vain. Tuor married Turgon's daughter Idril and their son Earendil later successfully reached the Undying Lands and convinced the Valar to defeat Morgoth in the War of Wrath.
Voronwe's fate is uncertain. At their first meeting, Tuor implied that Voronwe would survive the forthcoming events: "For my heart says to you that far from the Shadow your long road shall lead you, and your hope shall return to the Sea." (UT, p. 33) According to an early version of "The Fall of Gondolin," Voronwe helped guard Idril during the attack and escaped with Tuor's family and other refugees who settled at the Havens of Sirion.
Around 525, Tuor and Idril left Middle-earth and sailed into the West. One source (HoME XI, 352) suggests that Voronwe may have accompanied them.
Voronwë means "steadfast, faithful" in Quenya. He was referred to as Voronwë Aranwion meaning "Voronwë, son of Aranwë." (UT, p. 50)
The Silmarillion:"Of the Fifth Battle," p. 196; "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin," p. 239; Index, entry for Voronwe
Unfinished Tales: "Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin," p. 30-50, 53 notes 10, 12, and 13, 54-55 note 23; "Cirion and Eorl," p. 317 note 44 (definition of Voronwe)
The History of Middle-earth, vol. II, The Book of Lost Tales Part Two: "The Fall of Gondolin," p. 156-60, 162, 178, 186-88, 195, 205-7, 209, 215; "The Tae of Earendel," p. 254-56, 260, 263-65
The History of Middle-earth, vol. V, The Lost Road and Other Writings: "The Etymologies," entry for BORON
The History of Middle-earth, vol. XI, The War of the Jewels: "The Grey Annals," p. 80, 91, 136; "The Wanderings of Hurin," p. 256; "The Tale of Years," p. 352, 354
Family Tree of Finwe:
Dates are First
Age unless otherwise indicated: YT = Years of the Trees; SA = Second Age;
TA = Third Age; FA = Fourth Age
Green text = daughters mentioned in HoME X, p. 238, 262, 265 and HoME XII, p. 343, 359 with varying names and birth order.
Family Tree of Thingol:
Dates are First Age unless otherwise indicated: YT = Years of the Trees; SA = Second Age; TA = Third Age; FA = Fourth Age
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