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Topic: Basic Elf

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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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Date: Dec 14, 2008
Basic Elf

Basic Elf:
Tolkien has created divisions in the peoples of the First Born, the Eldar.  I have become confused by these  divisions of the various different Elven groups.
I know some are connected to the Valarsome going and some staying as in the story of Feanor.  And I know that some are never connected to the Valar as they chose to stay in Middle Earth and not go into the West.
Then at the end of the Third Age all can go to the West?
What about those who were corrupted by Melkor?
What about the Sindarin.  Why does Legolas begin to obsess about the sea  at the End of Lord of the Rings?
Is it connected to when the Elves are awakened by Eru?
In reading and researching the Second Age I am confused about Cirdanhe gives a ring to Gandalf.  Is it because he is a High Elf?  And where does he fit in the tales of Gil-Galad and Aldarion of Numenor?  Are Gil-Galad and Cirdan of equal rank.  Are they different races of Elf?
What is a High Elf?  And why is there a distinction in the first place?
I also need help understanding the Nolder from the other Elf (do I call them tribes or races?) kindreds.

I guess what I am asking for is a basic course in Elf?(for a confused Bear)



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Anarion, Son of Elendil - rank 8
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There are so many different 'groups' of Elves it can get confusing. But here is what I know:

In the beginning there were three houses of Elves, the Noldor, led by Finwe, The Teleri, led by Elwe Singollo (later became known as Elu Thingol) and Olwe his brother, and the Vanyar, led by Ingwe (who was afterwards considered the King of all Elves).

The Elves of the Vanyar and the Noldor and mostpart of the Teleri were swayed by the words of Orome and accepted the summons to Valinor. These became known as the Eldar (a name which Orome had originally given for all the Elves). The Vanyar are considered the 'Highest' of the Elves, for they sit at the feet of Manwe and Varda and few of mortal men have spoken with them. The Noldor came behind the Vanyar on the Great Journey and they are the crafters, friends of Aule and are name the Deep Elves. The Teleri were the hindmost group of the Elves on the Great Journey to Valinor, for they were the largest host. They have a great liking for the Sea and thus are called the Falmari, the Sea-Elves.

The Elves that made it to Valinor are called the Caliquendi, the Elves of the Light (High Elves), for they saw the light of the Two Trees before the Sun and Moon. Some of the Teleri however did not make it to Valinor and turned off from the road. These are named the Umanyar.

The Elves that refused the summons completely are called the Avari, the Unwilling. Both to Umanyar and the Avari are named the Moriquendi, the Elves of the Darkness, for they never saw the Light of the Two trees.

Quendi is the name given to all the Elves of all races. And Eldalie seems also to be a name for all the Elves (though someone can come along and correct me).

The Sindar (Elves of the Twilight) is the name for the Elves of King Thingol in Beleriand, who got sundered from the Great Journey. Thingol, although of the Sindar, is named also amoung the Caliquendi, the Elves of the Light, for he alone of the Sindar had seen the Light of the Two Trees.

The Nandor is a name for a group of Elves who Lenwe, of the host of Olwe of the Teleri, led away from the Great Journey into Beleriand.

There may be some other smaller groups of Elves but thats the basics smile.gif

The Elves that were seemingly taken by Melkor, before Orome had ever seen them, it seems they were slowly tortuted and mutilated and thus perhaps the very first primitive Orcs were made. Though if you mean what happens to an Elvish spirit after death, Morgoth's Ring gives alot of info.

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Tom Bombadil
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And here you have it. Our resident scholar Glorfindel. As always, awesome mellon nín.

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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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I'll try to respond to some of the other things raised by the Bear.

What about the Sindarin. Why does Legolas begin to obsess about the sea at the End of Lord of the Rings?

In the hearts of the Exiles the yearning for the Sea was an unquiet never to be stilled; in the hearts of the Grey-elves it slumbered, but once awakened it could not be appeased.

Or so it is said wink


In reading and researching the Second Age I am confused about Cirdan he gives a ring to Gandalf. Is it because he is a High Elf?
 

Do you mean why does he have a Ring of Power in the first place? If so I would say he was a great Elf with notable foresight, and so it seemed wise to entrust him with one of the Three.

And where does he fit in the tales of Gil-Galad and Aldarion of Numenor?
 

Good question. He seems to be 'Keeper' of the Grey Havens at the time. Celeborn at some point ruled the fief of Harlindon, and there were many Sindarin Elves there.


Are Gil-Galad and Cirdan of equal rank. Are they different races of Elf?

Gil-galad was High King of the Noldor (IIRC he was referred to as High King of the Elves of the West). Círdan was Sindarin, said to be akin to Olwe in a late text (thus akin to Elwe). Tolkien described him as 'one of the highest of those (Teleri) who were not transported to Valinor, but became known as the Sindar, the Grey-elves...'. Though it was added that in Beleriand Cirdan and his folk remained in many ways distinct from the rest of the Sindar, and the other Sindar called them the Falathrim 'People of the foaming shore.'


What is a High Elf? And why is there a distinction in the first place?

After having passed Oversea, the High Elves were said to be those greatly enhanced in power and knowledge.

But 'High Elves' or Tareldar could also refer more broadly to the West Elves (Eldar) in comparison to the East Elves (not Eldar). In this sense Círdan would be a High Elf, compared to the Silvan Elves of Thranduil's Realm, for example -- but not in the former sense, which would thus, in Middle-earth anyway, refer to the Exiled Noldor.

I also need help understanding the Nolder from the other Elf (do I call them tribes or races?) kindreds.

The Noldor were the second clan, or
Tatyar 'Seconds' (their numerical name):

The name Noldor meant 'The Wise or 'Those who know' and was given to the Second Clan by the others. Early on they showed the greatest talents of all the Elves both for intellectual pursuits and for technical skills. The Tatyar were evenly divided with respect to the choice to take up the Great March. The Noldor became the largest clan to reach Aman and the returning exiles called themselves Etyañgoldi 'Exiled Noldor' or simply Ñoldor.


The Noldor were mostly dark haired, but owing to intermarriage the golden hair of the Vanyar sometimes later appeared among them, notably in the house of Finarfin. They were said to resemble the Sindar, though it was also noted that the Teleri (from which clan the Sindar hailed) were in general somewhat less in build and stature than the Noldor. Also, the eyes of the Elves of Aman impressed those of Middle-earth by their piercing brightness, for which reason the Sindar often called the Noldor Lechind 'flame-eyed'.



-- Edited by Galin at 14:56, 2008-12-15

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Think you got more than you bargained for off those guys Bear?biggrin.gif

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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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All,
mouth of sauron was right. There was lots to research and process. Yet at the same time I really needed the depth and quantity and quality that Glorfindel 1235 and Galin so generously gave me.
But despite the good quality I still have questions.
I beg your patience as I may still not understand what you have already answered.
Let me recap what I know and present my questions. Please understand that I do this for reproof and instruction.

Quendi: is the name given to all the Elves of all races. Also known as the Eldar (a name which Orome had originally given for all the Elves).And Eldalie seems also to be a name for all the Elves

In the beginning there were three houses of Elves
The Elves of the Vanyar and the Noldor and for the most part of the Teleri were swayed by the words of Orome and accepted the summons to Valinor.
The Elves that made it to Valinor are called the Caliquendi, the Elves of the Light (High Elves), for they saw the light of the Two Trees before the Sun and Moon. Some of the Teleri however did not make it to Valinor and turned off from the road. These are named the Umanyar.
The Elves that refused the summons completely are called the Avari, the Unwilling. Both to Umanyar and the Avari are named the Moriquendi, the Elves of the Darkness, for they never saw the Light of the Two trees.

Caliquendi vs. Moriquendi
Caliquendi = Those who made it to Valinor - Elves of the Light for they saw the light of the Two Trees before the Sun and Moon
Moriquendi = Those who never made it to Valinor (Umanyar and the Avari) Elves of the Darkness for they saw the light of the Two Trees before the Sun and Moon
Umanyar. = turned off from the road and did not make it to Valinor.
Avari = Elves that refused the summons completely


The Noldor, led by Finwe,
The Teleri, led by Elwe Singollo (later became known as Elu Thingol) and Olwe his brother
The Vanyar, led by Ingwe (who was afterwards considered the King of all Elves).

The Vanyar, led by Ingwe;
are considered the 'Highest' of the Elves, for they sit at the feet of Manwe and Varda (sky & stars), few of mortal men have spoken with them.


The Noldor, led by Finwe;
the Noldor were swayed by the words of Orome and accepted the summons to Valinor. The Noldor came behind the Vanyar on the Great Journey and they are the crafters, friends of Aule and are named the Deep Elves.



The Teleri, led by Elwe Singollo (later became known as Elu Thingol) ;
They have a great liking for the Sea and thus are called the Falmari, the Sea-Elves.
The Sindar (Elves of the Twilight) is the name for the Elves of King Thingol in Beleriand, who got sundered from the Great Journey.
The Nandor is a name for a group of Elves who Lenwe, of the host of Olwe of the Teleri, led away from the Great Journey into Beleriand.





QUESTIONS
Who are the Exiles? Why the name and what happens to them? How did they offend? Was this a self imposed exile or an expulsion?
Who were the leaders? (Feanor and his sons plus Galadriel?)

Which elvish clan or category are those who cross the ice?

What about the Sindarin. The Sindar (Elves of the Twilight) is the name for the Elves of King Thingol in Beleriand, who got sundered from the Great Journey. Are they Caliquendi or Moriquendi? If Moriquendi are they Umanyar or the Avari? Same questions go for the Nandor. Are the Nandor or the Sindarin considered Nolder or Teleri?

Is Cirdan Caliquendi or Moriquendi? He seems to have a great liking for the Sea. So would he be called Falmari, the Sea-Elves. Is he related to Gil-galad? Galin wrote; Gil-galad was High King of the Nolder (he was referred to as High King of the Elves of the West). Círdan was Sindarin, said to be akin to Olwe in a late text (thus akin to Elwe). Tolkien described him as 'one of the highest of those (Teleri) who were not transported to Valinor, but became known as the Sindar, the Grey-elves...'. (Tolkien Forums > Elven Lore > Basic Elf > Galin > December 14th, 2008)


-- Edited by Bear at 19:03, 2009-01-08

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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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Who are the Exiles? Why the name and what happens to them? How did they offend? Was this a self imposed exile or an expulsion? Who were the leaders? (Feanor and his sons plus Galadriel?)

The Exiles are the returning Noldor (returning to Middle-earth), but to say more might ruin the amazing Silmarillion for you.

Which elvish clan or category are those who cross the ice?

They are Exiles too, but again I'm not sure more should be said unless you really don't care about a virgin read of the Silmarillion. I'll try to answer a few things below, but even the following might be spoiling things!

What about the Sindarin. The Sindar (Elves of the Twilight) is the name for the Elves of King Thingol in Beleriand, who got sundered from the Great Journey. Are they Caliquendi or Moriquendi?

Moriquendi 'Dark-elves' at least in the sense they had not seen the light of the Trees. From a different perspective, and perhaps confusingly, they were not Light-elves nor 'Dark-elves' in the sense of Avari (as related in the Silmarillion). Thingol himself was not one of the Moriquendi in any case. Note that the Sindar are those Teleri who had reached Beleriand, thus they went very far West but they did not cross the Sea.

Or rather (generally speaking), they were the ones that hadn't crossed the Sea and were named the Sindar, as Sindar 'Greys' or 'Grey-elves' is a Quenya name, and it was given by the returning Noldor.

If Moriquendi are they Umanyar or the Avari?

Not Avari, as the Avari refused the initial summons. The term Avari means 'Refusers' and hails from a word meaning 'recusant, one who refuses to act as advised or commanded'.

The term Teleri meant 'those at the end of the line, the hindmost' and according to JRRT was evidently a nickname arising during the Great March, when the 'Teleri', the least eager to depart, often lagged far behind.

To make things more confusing perhaps, in one text (at least) it is noted that the Noldor asserted that most of the Teleri were at heart Avari -- this is due to their point of view at a given time, but an Elf is not really an Avar if he or she began the Great March way back in the deeps of time. 

Same questions go for the Nandor.

The Nandor are Dark-elves but not Avari. They took up the March but did not finish it.

Are the Nandor or the Sindarin considered Nolder or Teleri?

The Sindarin Elves are part of the larger group of the Telerin clan.

Is Cirdan Caliquendi or Moriquendi?


He would be classed as one of the Moriquendi as he had never been to Aman or seen the Two Trees.

He seems to have a great liking for the Sea. So would he be called Falmari, the Sea-Elves.

The Sea-elves in the land of Aman (Oversea) were called Falmari. Cirdan was Lord of the Falathrim in Middle-earth. In a late text it was said of Cirdan's folk: The Noldor called them the Falmari, 'Wave-folk' and the other Sindar Falathrim 'people of the foaming shore'

Q. falma 'crested wave', whence Falmari
S. falas 'shore, line of surf' in Falathrim

In Beleriand the Sindar lived in different regions: Falathrim sea-board of West Beleriand. Iathrim from Doriath. Mithrim who had gone north and inhabited the regions about the great lake that afterwards bore their name.

Is he related to Gil-galad? Galin wrote; Gil-galad was High King of the Nolder (he was referred to as High King of the Elves of the West). Círdan was Sindarin, said to be akin to Olwe in a late text (thus akin to Elwe). Tolkien described him as 'one of the highest of those (Teleri) who were not transported to Valinor, but became known as the Sindar, the Grey-elves...'. 

Hmm, somehow it says Nolder even in the quote (should be Noldor). In any case Gil-galad was Noldorin, so from a different clan than Cirdan.
 
By the way keep on asking if you like (do you plan to read the Tale of the Silmarils?), as I love posting about the Eldar myself. And it can get very confusing with all the terms. But that's not unexpected in the realistic setting that Tolkien draws.



-- Edited by Galin at 13:03, 2009-01-13

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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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Galin,
Thank you.
I have read the Silmarillion several times but I become more confused as I read the various publisher and editorial notes in the Silmarillion and sub-stories in the Books of Lost Tales and Unfinished Tales.
I am most grateful that you help me clarify and organize this lore in my head so I can better appreciate Tolkiens different works...like the Tale of Galadriel and Celeborn.
I am fortunate to possess and have read both editions of the Silmarillion and also an old cassette tape audio edition. (sometimes I let the tapes read me to sleep)
Can you shed some light for me on the Half-Elven?  I'm a little confused about the matriarchal and patriarchal lineage of Elrond and Elros and how these characters become so pivotal in Tolkiens creations?




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Fundin, Lord of Moria - Rank 5
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Apologies Bear! Actually my first thought was that you had surely read the Silmarillion, but I didn't bother to think long enough about your previous posts before I let my poor second thought (assumption) rule. 

And yes, no doubt, 'unpublished' and early versions (especially The Book of Lost Tales), can confuse matters greatly -- some terms change in meaning, tales differ in details large and small, names change and etc.


Anyway, now there are more fun questions to ponder and reconsider. I'll be back when I have more time, though surely others will jump in in any event.

smile 
 

-- Edited by Galin at 03:41, 2009-01-10

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Samwise Gamgee - rank 9
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Bear wrote:
QUESTIONS
Who are the Exiles? Why the name and what happens to them? How did they offend? Was this a self imposed exile or an expulsion?
Who were the leaders? (Feanor and his sons plus Galadriel?)

Which elvish clan or category are those who cross the ice?

What about the Sindarin. The Sindar (Elves of the Twilight) is the name for the Elves of King Thingol in Beleriand, who got sundered from the Great Journey. Are they Caliquendi or Moriquendi? If Moriquendi are they Umanyar or the Avari? Same questions go for the Nandor. Are the Nandor or the Sindarin considered Nolder or Teleri?

Is Cirdan Caliquendi or Moriquendi? He seems to have a great liking for the Sea. So would he be called Falmari, the Sea-Elves. Is he related to Gil-galad? Galin wrote; Gil-galad was High King of the Nolder (he was referred to as High King of the Elves of the West). Círdan was Sindarin, said to be akin to Olwe in a late text (thus akin to Elwe). Tolkien described him as 'one of the highest of those (Teleri) who were not transported to Valinor, but became known as the Sindar, the Grey-elves...'. (Tolkien Forums > Elven Lore > Basic Elf > Galin > December 14th, 2008)


I'll try and answer some of those.

The Exiles are of the Noldor. Feanor, after Morgoth slew his father and captured the Silmarils, was summoned to the Ring of Doom before the Valar. You can refer to that part in the book for specifics, but anyway, Feanor left the council after he refused to surrender the Silmarils to the Valar (it was not at this time known that Morgoth had already taken them).
Anyhow, he later went to Tirion upon Tuna, I think, and inspired the Noldor to leave the land of the Valar, where they could not expand their realm or progress into new lands, as they could in Middle-earth. And also he and he sons swore a terrible oath that they would reclaim the Silmarils at all costs and would seek vengeance on any who held the Silmarils from them, be he Elf or Demon, or Valar, or Man yet unborn.

They left Valinor and crossed into Middle-earth. Only Finarfin, half-brother of Feanor and Fingolfin, repented of the journey and went back, and was granted mercy from the Valar and became king of the Noldor in the Blessed realm.
But Feanor, as the chief mover of the rebellion, and Fingolfin, who went mainly because his sons went, did not listen to the messages of the Valar and went on. The Valar forbade them from ever returning, and thus why they are called Exiles.

It was only 7000 years later that Galadriel, as daughter of Finarfin who did not repent of the journey, was allowed to return to Valinor, after she resisted the temptation of the Ring. Thus was finally the Ban of the Exiles removed.

The Sindar, as Glorfindel sated, were Teleri in the beginning but did not manage the journey West. They set out but became wayward nearer the shores of the sea, and they search for Elwe their lord, who had become enamoured by Melian the Maiar. Later once they found Elwe, they established the wide lands of Beleriand, and became known as the Sindar. But only Elwe (who became Thingol) was counted amoung the Caliquendi, for he alone of all of them had seen the Light of the Trees of Valinor.

The Nandor I think were a group of Teleri would turned off the Great Journey. I don't know much about them so someone else could fill you in.

Moriquendi is the name for the Elves who hadn't seen the Two trees. So if Galin is right that Cirdan is Sindarin, then he also would be Moriquendi.

With regards to the Half-Elven. Elros and Elrond were the sons of Earendil. The line of Earendil can be traced back to Beren (Man) and Luthien(Elf/Maiar, as daughter of Melian and Thingol). Also Idril (daughter of Turgon, king of Gondolin) and Tuor (man) was another wedding of both kindreds. You can search the Silmarillion for the offspring from both of these and come up with the line of the half-elvensmile.gif



-- Edited by mouth of sauron at 12:32, 2009-01-10

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'Cirdan was aTelerin Elf, one of the highest of those who were not transported to Valinor but became known as the Sindar, the Grey-elves...'*

*A Quenya name given by the exiled Noldor, and primarily applied to the folk of Doriath, people of Elwe Grey-cloak.'

'But Cirdan and his people remained in many ways distinct from the rest of the Sindar. They retained the old name Teleri (in later Sindarin Telir, or Telerrim) and remained in many ways separate folk, even in later days a more archaic language. The Noldor called them the Falmari, 'Wave-folk' and the other Sindar Falathrim 'people of the foaming shore'

Text and Author's note from Cirdan (Last Writings).

You might note that Falmari here is said to be used of Cirdan's folk, so thus, this being the later text than in HME X 'The Sea-elves therefore they became in Valinor, the Falmari, for they made music beside the breaking waves.' I should add that to what I posted earlier.

I don't have much time, but I thought I would add some confirmation on Cirdan as a Sinda, and add this text on Falmari.



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Galin and mouth of sauron,
Thank you for the time and effort in helping confirm and revise my understanding of Elven Lore.
Reading your responses and encouraging me to keep reading Tolkiens works to find my own answers is much appreciated.
It leads me to a better understanding and greater artistic appreciation of stories like The Tale of Arwen and Aragorn.  Arwens choice of mortality and her regrets are so much richer and more poignant when one has an understanding and background as pointed out. The line of Earendil can be traced back to Beren (Man) and Luthien(Elf /Maiar, as daughter of Melian and Thingol). Also Idril (daughter of Turgon, king of Gondolin) and Tuor (man) was another wedding of both kindreds." (Tolkien Forums > Elven Lore > Basic Elf > mouth of sauron > January 10th, 2009)  These stories of  heroic and romantic commitment would certainly influence Arwens choice as consistent with her heritage.

I have always thought that there was so much more to the story of Cirdan. He seems to be an elf of such importance behind the scenes; giving Gandalf a ring of power, his role in the tales of Gil-Galad and Aldarion of Numenor seems to be a huge background piece of the Last Alliance.  It seems he should have several unique chapters of his own. He is sort of a Sindarin Umanyarin superstarof the Second AgeAs Galin wrote; But Cirdan and his people remained in many ways distinct from the rest of the Sindar. They retained the old name Teleri (in later Sindarin Telir, or Telerrim) and remained in many ways separate folk, even in later days a more archaic language. The Noldor called them the Falmari, 'Wave-folk' and the other Sindar Falathrim 'people of the foaming shore(Tolkien Forums > Elven Lore > Basic Elf > Galin > January 10th, 2009)

Reading past forum topics such as The Istari, Gil-galad, and Morgoths Ring and at least a dozen other topic brings to life the Elvish race.
And it also brings new questions about the different kindreds relationship with the Valar.
I read, in the Silmarillion, about Aules special relationship as creator of the dwarves.  And Erus clemency with the dwarves.
But why the Vanyar sit at the feet of Manwe and Varda is not exactly clear.  Is it because they were good little elves or what.  I know about Orome and the summons to Valinor but what about the Nolder and Aule and Yavanna?  I have read about Ulmo and his love of Men and Elves and his various appearances in the Silmarillion. So what about Ulmo and the Sea-Elves? As Galin wrote, The Noldor called them the Falmari, 'Wave-folk' and the other Sindar Falathrim 'people of the foaming shore. (Tolkien Forums > Elven Lore > Basic Elf > Galin > January 10th, 2009)
 Shouldnt Ulmo hold them or they hold him is special reverence?
Were the Istari sent to earth for men or elves? Both? Niether-just foes of Sauron?
I have started my seventh reading of the Silmarillion and my first reading of the first five volumes of History of Middle-Earth.
I am digging deep into the psychological realm of archetypes which draw heavily on Classical Greek Mythology.  But I see there might be closer manifestations of archetype in how Tolkiens pantheon interacts with the kindreds of earthespecially Elves.
So one of the Elves (Elwe-Thingol) marries a Goddess?
So how about these various relationships with Eru, Valar, Ainur, and Mair?

Glorfindel 1235 wrote, In the beginning there were three houses of Elves, the Noldor, led by Finwe, The Teleri, led by Elwe Singollo (later became known as Elu Thingol) and Olwe his brother, and the Vanyar, led by Ingwe (who was afterwards considered the King of all Elves).
The Elves of the Vanyar and the Noldor and mostpart of the Teleri were swayed by the words of Orome and accepted the summons to Valinor. These became known as the Eldar (a name which Orome had originally given for all the Elves). The Vanyar are considered the 'Highest' of the Elves, for they sit at the feet of Manwe and Varda and few of mortal men have spoken with them. The Noldor came behind the Vanyar on the Great Journey and they are the crafters, friends of Aule and are name the Deep Elves. The Teleri were the hindmost group of the Elves on the Great Journey to Valinor, for they were the largest host. They have a great liking for the Sea and thus are called the Falmari, the Sea-Elves.
(Tolkien Forums > Elven Lore > Basic Elf > Glorfindel 1235 > December 14th, 2008)
(by the way Glorfindel, thank you so much for your patience and clarification on this topicyour insights and references helped me straighten out so many of the different and same dual names for the various elf kindreds that was confusing me)

So I have that basic information.  What I dont understand is the deterioration of the divine relationship of Valar and Elves.
So In Basic Elf; who were the gods and goddess of the Elves?


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Samwise Gamgee - rank 9
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Not sure I understand your question, Bear. The Valar only got sundered from the Noldor in the First Age, due mainly to Feanor. After the Noldor rebelled and left Valinor (only Finarfin and his following coming back after repenting) they were banned from ever returning, a ban however which was lifted to all except the other chief movers in that rebellion, Galadriel being one (she replied saying that she did not want to go anyhow). But later on, after the War of the Ring and after Galadriel helped the fellowship and refused the Ring, the ban was wholly lifted and she went back into the West which she had left over seven thousand years previous.

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mouth of sauron,
Thank you so much for your patience with me here. 
I apologize for waiting so long to reply.

Ok!  So Galadriel was a sister or daughter of Feanor and part of the rebellion.  Her act of contrition was when she refused the ring that Frodo offered it to her freely.  She knew it was her big test. It was revealed to us in the Lord of the Rings, "Then she let her hand fall, and the light faded, and suddenly she laughed again, and lo! she was shrunken: a slender elf-woman, clad in simple white, whose gentle voice was soft and sad,  'I pass the test' she said. 'I will diminish, and go into the West, and remain Galadriel.'"  (Lord of the Rings; Fellowship of the Ring, Book II, Chapter 7;The Mirror of Galadriel,  pg. 432)

In Lord of the Rings, Tolkien refers a couple of times to the telling of stories or the singing of songs of the Blessed Realm.  Are these hymns of worshipThree is Company (pg. 108) and Many Meetings (pg. 265) in Fellowship of the Ring is the Blessed Realm of the Valar or Ainur or the Quendi?
 I'm sorry I'm swimming with this but I'm stumbling through the Lost Tales books of the History of Middle-Earth series.  I'm looking for anchors. I'm trying to see if there is mythological roots of "religion" relating to C.G. Jung's concept of a universal collective unconscious that is manifest in Tolkien's entire group of works.


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Peoples of Beleriand - Rank 1
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hi dear friends!!

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Hi Forras,
Who is your favorite Elf and why?

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Thorin Oakenshield - Rank 6
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Hi Forras. As for my favourite elf it would have to be Beleg Strongbow...I think.

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Bear wrote:
Ok!  So Galadriel was a sister or daughter of Feanor and part of the rebellion.  Her act of contrition was when she refused the ring that Frodo offered it to her freely.  She knew it was her big test. It was revealed to us in the Lord of the Rings, "Then she let her hand fall, and the light faded, and suddenly she laughed again, and lo! she was shrunken: a slender elf-woman, clad in simple white, whose gentle voice was soft and sad,  'I pass the test' she said. 'I will diminish, and go into the West, and remain Galadriel.'"  (Lord of the Rings; Fellowship of the Ring, Book II, Chapter 7;The Mirror of Galadriel,  pg. 432)

In Lord of the Rings, Tolkien refers a couple of times to the telling of stories or the singing of songs of the Blessed Realm.  Are these hymns of worshipThree is Company (pg. 108) and Many Meetings (pg. 265) in Fellowship of the Ring is the Blessed Realm of the Valar or Ainur or the Quendi?
 I'm sorry I'm swimming with this but I'm stumbling through the Lost Tales books of the History of Middle-Earth series.  I'm looking for anchors. I'm trying to see if there is mythological roots of "religion" relating to C.G. Jung's concept of a universal collective unconscious that is manifest in Tolkien's entire group of works.


Galadriel was the daughter of Finarfin, half brother of Feanor, like Fingolfin was too.
The Blessed Realm is where the Ainur (the Valar being the greater and the Maiar the lesser of this order) and where most of the Quendi (Elves) now live. In the Third Age Aman (the continent in which Valinor is) is no longer within the 'Circles of the World' for it was removed after the drowning of Numenor.
As for 'Hyms of worship' - worship does not take place in Tolkien's myth. The Elves do not worship the Ainur. The only forms of worship take place with Morgoth's and even Sauron's servants unto themselves.

The one exception I can think of is when the men of Numenor had a place devoted to worshipping Iluvatar on the Holy Mountain of Meneltarma.

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Glorfindel 1235,
Thank you!  I was getting confused on who belonged to who and what went where.
I remember that Fëanor's mother (Míriel also known as Serindë) was burnt out because of his birth - to the point that, when she laid herself down to rest in Lorien, her spirit departed to the halls of Mandos.
(Silmarillion, Quenta Silmarillion, Chapter VI - Of Feanor and the Unchaining of Melkor, pgs 63-64)
Finwë's second marriage, to Indis, brought forth mighty sons Fingolfin and Finarfin.  And it is from Finarfin and Eärwen, that of the five children, Galadriel was the youngest daughter.
Have I got it right?
I think you also have cleared up my confusion of Ainur, Valar, Maiar, and the Blessed Realm
."The Blessed Realm is where the Ainur (the Valar being the greater and the Maiar the lesser of this order) and where most of the Quendi (Elves) now live." (Tolkien Forums > Elven Lore>  Basic Elf  > Glorfindel 1235 > February 19th, 2009 )

I think I see where you are coming from on the topic of worship..especially when it comes to Ainur and Quendi.  While the Quendi may "sit at the feet" of certain Valar it is more on the line of  knight to king or squire to knight rather than supplicant to priest or soul to God.  I also appreciate your example of  "the men of Numenor had a place devoted to worshipping Iluvatar on the Holy Mountain of Meneltarma."(Tolkien Forums > Elven Lore>  Basic Elf  > Glorfindel 1235 > February 19th, 2009 ) Can you site where this is in the literature?  It would save me hours of searching.

As to the absence or malevolent aspects of "worship" I think you and I may differ.
Certainly there underlies a "good vs evil" in which certain races in Middle-Earth choose sides.  You have pointed out the examples of Morgoth and Sauron.  I think we can see the concept of repentance, judgment, and salvation in two clear examples - one successful and one a failure. First is Galadriel and her rejection of the ring and her reward of admittance to the Blessed Realm. Second is the miserable failure of the internal-eternal struggle in Sméagol and Gollum. The result being the thinly disguised judgment of being thrown into the Cracks of Doom.  Definitely a metaphor for Hell if we ever see one.  And how are Frodo and Sam saved from a similar fate?  By the power of the love between the hobbits which drags each other out of the cave.  And the love of their friends in the form of Gandalf, a Christ figure if we have ever seen one, racing on eagles to their rescue (salvation?).
Now I know these are literary devices and not genuine clerical/scriptural allegories.  As a matter of fact I have heard some Christian Fundamentalists claim that young peoples fascination with Lord of the Rings draws them from their devotion to orthodox canons. (this is a concept I vehemently reject)
What draws me to supposition that these literary devices are deliberate is a statement Christopher Tolkien puts forth in the foreword of the 1999 Houghton Mifflin edition of the Silmarillion,
"...Moreover the old legends ('old' now not only in their derivation from the remote First Age, but also in terms of my father's life) became the vehicle and depository of his profoundest reflections. In his later writing and poetry sank down behind his theological and philosophical preoccupations: from which arose incompatibilities of tone." (Silmarillion, Foreword by Christopher Reuel Tolkien)
What keeps me on my quest?
Finding and defining those "theological and philosophical preoccupations". 
Does the "theological preoccupations" have elements that lend themselves to an observable religion or method of worship.
Did J.R.R. Tolkien, consciously or sublimely because of his own devout preoccupations, end up formalizing those ideas into a fantastical mythology which became a fantastical religion?
One man's mythology can be another man's theology. One man's ceiling is another man's floor.  One man's philosophical treatise is another man's holy scripture.
The entire Ainulindale has concepts and elements that, by substituting words as God and Angels, is a retelling of Judaic/Christian religious creationist myth or scripture.

I am not looking to replace anyone's religion or squeeze Tolkien's work into a super-imposed theographical framework.  I have my own faith thank you and I'm not going to evangelize anyone or anything else.

What I am saying, and continue to see, is that Tolkien's work is filled with stories of betrayal and redemption, with supernormal or divine intervention, with a divine plan of salvation and predestination.
The entire preface to the second edition of the Silmarillion discusses this and draws parallels to other theological/mythological constructs.


Last, but not finally - for I think I see years of work ahead, I see a reflection of the ultimate confrontation as in God's rebuke of Satan.  "...And thou, Melkor, will discover all the secret thoughts of thy mind, and wilt perceive that they are but a part of the whole and tributary to its glory."  (Silmarillion, Ainulindale-The Music of the Ainur, pg 17)

Glorfindel 1235 I really, really, appreciate your scholarship, insight, and patience in helping me correct and illuminate my confusion on Basic Elf.
I am motivated to explore Tolkien's works with new insight and a depth which allows and respects a variety and inter-relatedness which helps me approach the work with humility.
I am inspired.
Thank you very much!


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Anarion, Son of Elendil - rank 8
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Quite a long post there! I'll try picking out any questions I can see...

Bear wrote: I remember that Fëanor's mother (Míriel also known as Serindë) was burnt out because of his birth - to the point that, when she laid herself down to rest in Lorien, her spirit departed to the halls of Mandos. (Silmarillion, Quenta Silmarillion, Chapter VI - Of Feanor and the Unchaining of Melkor, pgs 63-64)
Finwë's second marriage, to Indis, brought forth mighty sons Fingolfin and Finarfin. And it is from Finarfin and Eärwen, that of the five children, Galadriel was the youngest daughter.
Have I got it right?


Yep, correct smile.gif

Bear wrote: I think I see where you are coming from on the topic of worship..especially when it comes to Ainur and Quendi. While the Quendi may "sit at the feet" of certain Valar it is more on the line of knight to king or squire to knight rather than supplicant to priest or soul to God. I also appreciate your example of "the men of Numenor had a place devoted to worshipping Iluvatar on the Holy Mountain of Meneltarma."(Tolkien Forums > Elven Lore> Basic Elf > Glorfindel 1235 > February 19th, 2009 ) Can you site where this is in the literature? It would save me hours of searching.

In The Downfall of Numenor near the back of the Silmarillion I think there is reference to it, and in Unfinished Tales, particularly the chapter 'Description of Numenor'.

Bear wrote: Last, but not finally - for I think I see years of work ahead, I see a reflection of the ultimate confrontation as in God's rebuke of Satan. "...And thou, Melkor, will discover all the secret thoughts of thy mind, and wilt perceive that they are but a part of the whole and tributary to its glory." (Silmarillion, Ainulindale-The Music of the Ainur, pg 17)

This is where I might differ. I don't think Iluvatar is rebuking Melkor here, I think he is educating him. He is telling Melkor that when he descends into Arda, Melkor will find out all the secret desires of his heart, greed, domination, destruction etc, and in the end, possible after the Dagor Dagorath it seems likely (use the search function of the forum for more info), Melkor will realise that all his desires and designs were but a part of Iluvatar's Great Plan, and although in their simplicity they were perceived as 'evil' and 'going against' Iluvatars plans, they were in fact furthering the Great Plan of Iluvatar, and were 'But a part of the whole, and tributary to its glory'.

-- Edited by Glorfindel1235 at 00:31, 2009-03-06

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Glorfindel 1235,
You wrote;
" This is where I might differ. I don't think Iluvatar is rebuking Melkor here, I think he is educating him. He is telling Melkor that when he descends into Arda, Melkor will find out all the secret desires of his heart, greed, domination, destruction etc..."
(Tolkien Forums > Elven Lore> Basic Elf > Glorfindel 1235 > February 21st, 2009 )

Very good point but I disagree in part. Iluvatar is putting Melkor in his place. And now, when all the music is made manifest, Melkor will see that as much as he worked for his own glory and domination of the musical themes, his music is but a part of Iluvatar's theme and Melkor is a mere instrument, no more than a cymbal in the orchestra, as are each of the other Ainur.

And how this fits in basic elf...?
The First Born, through struggle and triumph, are, with the support of Men, the beauty and harmony of the entire composition.

The more I read the more I see that central to any part of the story, (men, orc, hobbit, ainur, dwarf, ent, eagle, bear, horse, etc...the earth and sea's) all have a basic purpose in conflict with or support of the Elves.


What do you think?


-- Edited by Bear at 02:19, 2009-02-22

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Once I read your posts I was then drawn to this quote:

"Then Ilúvatar spoke, and he said: 'Mighty are the Ainur, and mightiest among them is Melkor; but that he may know, and all the Ainur, that I am Ilúvatar, those things that ye have sung, I will show them forth, that ye may see what ye have done. And thou, Melkor, shalt see that no theme may be played that hath not its uttermost source in me, nor can any alter the music in my despite. For he that attempteth this shall prove but mine instrument in the devising of things more wonderful, which he himself hath not imagined.'"

To me its saying that the more one tries to alter the Music, the more one tries to go against Iluvatar's will, Melkor being core of rebelling against the Music, the more it will actually go with Iluvatar's purpose.

If you just go with the theme Eru sets forth you can create many fair and good things, but when you try and rebel against that theme you will actually create even more wonderful things, unforeseen. An example could be that If Melkor had not rebelled and all had been perfectly well in the History of the World there would be many fair things. But because Melkor rebelled and caused death and destruction, it was through these acts that Elves and Men, and Dwarves even, grew to know sorrow, pain, anguish and fear, and therefore made them grow to love life even more.

Thus by Melkor rebelling, although it a glance it caused much destruction, in the end it actually created a more 'deep' and 'enlightened' society amoung the Peoples, who otherwise would not have known courage, bravery, sacrifice etc. These are the things that Melkor could not foresee and hence the part "Which he himself, hath not imagined", and Melkor himself was the instrument in their making.

-- Edited by mouth of sauron at 12:45, 2009-02-24

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Thank you mouth of sauron!!!
In my practice I see the same thing.
Couples who overcome obstacles in their relationship often have a deeper more passionate relationship.
Addicts who manage to remain in recovery have often a history of relapse. But if they pursue and overcome their dependency they find they have a closer relationship with a higher power, build a network of true and loving friends, and develope the strength and wisdom to help others.

Your quote from the Silmarillion Ainulindale is wonderful, but this from your own mind is priceless;

" But because Melkor rebelled and caused death and destruction, it was through these acts that Elves and Men, and Dwarves even, grew to know sorrow, pain, anguish and fear, and therefore made them grow to love life even more.
Thus by Melkor rebelling, although it a glance it caused much destruction, in the end it actually created a more 'deep' and 'enlightened' society amoung the Peoples, who otherwise would not have known courage, bravery, sacrifice etc. These are the things that Melkor could not foresee and hence the part "Which he himself, hath not imagined", and Melkor himself was the instrument in their making."
(Tolkien Forums > Elven Lore> Basic Elf > mouth of sauron > February 24th, 2009 )

As you have said it, it becomes and equation.
Therefore those who experience sorrow, pain, anguish and fear, will have the opportunity to gain courage, bravery, willingness to sacrifice, honor, redemption, and a passionate zest for life.

I think that as I read the different stories and their characters (Beren & Luthien, Faramir, Eowyn, Sam, Haun,etc) it is the presenceof a divine will that manifests itself in the virtues through direction and transformation.
Which brings me back to your quote.
And to a sharpening of my sword...there are battles to be fought...
courage, bravery, willingness to sacrifice, and honor, to be won.


-- Edited by Bear at 16:31, 2009-02-24

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Peoples of Beleriand - Rank 1
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in portuguese ediction of "The Silmarillion" in the last page appears a three of kinds of elves!!
i think it appears in other contries edictions!!!
Try see it!!!


-- Edited by Forras at 17:31, 2009-02-26

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I think you mean the Teleri, Noldor and Vanyar, Forras?

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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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I have a question...
Who do you feel is the most noble elf (or half elf) and why?
Or who is the most interesting elf and why/

I like the elves in LOTR even though the story is not really about them.  Elrond half-elven has always fascinated me.  Letting go of Arwen must tug at every fathers heart.  And his heroism in battle and counsel at trouble make him a figure of great respect..

Anyway, that is just a tiny example of what I mean.
I expect names like Luthien, Beleg Strongbow, Galadriel, Feanor, and Elu Thingol.
I am positive there are many others.

Hope to bring up what is on the hearts of Forum members and learn from their response.


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Anarion, Son of Elendil - rank 8
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Beleg Cuthalion for me. I think he was said to be one of the most enduring/resistent Elves of the First Age. Willing to rescue Turin from an Orc-camp, and successfully, but alas he fell into the Doom of Morgoth.

Sorry I couldn't be more enlightening Bear^^

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Glorfindel 1235
I think "Beleg Cuthalion" is a wonderful choice.
He is the ultimate warrior and the ultimate friend.
When I see or treat veterans I often think to myself "Beleg Strongbow"
One of the most difficult diagnosis needing treatment is Post Traumatic Stress Disorder with the complication of having inflicted or received "friendly fire". The traumatic memory binds itself to the personality and interferes with normal everyday function such as sleep and emotional stability. Conversion reaction symptoms are also common. Often there are attempts for self medication with drugs and alcohol leading to addiction.
Legal and relationship issues are also common.

Beleg Strongbow is a character my patients relate to and his story, when shared, brings out many of the issues which must be dealt with for successful recovery. Beleg's maintaining spiritual, psychological, and moral integrity are wonderful ideals for my patients to hold onto.

I understand that "Beleg Cuthalion" translates in the Sindarin as "Mighty-Strong-Bow"
He seems to be the supreme "special operations" warrior; leader, healer, weapons master, scout, front line, and staff officer

I dug a little out from Wikipedia;

"He is master of the bow, axe, sword and spear, having considerable magical skills with weapons...He is stated to be a master of healing...becomes the mentor, good friend and brother-in-arms of Túrin Turambar...Much is said of him, his character and his individual heroic feats and deeds in the various versions of the tales..."

So Glorfindel, your choice, to me is an excellent one.
Thanks for the input:)wink





-- Edited by Bear at 20:11, 2009-03-06

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Anarion, Son of Elendil - rank 8
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Apart from Elrond, who are your top contenders Bear?

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Glorfindel 1235,
There really are so many I really admire or fascinate me.  Claiming them, some for their virtue and some for their complexity is a challenge.
I find the sons of Finwe, especially Feanor and Fingolfin, a beautiful tapestry of weaknesses and strengths.
Fëanors innovative artistic character rings so true to my own studies of creative temperament. 
In my work the most creative of those that I serve have elements of obsessive-compulsive personality as well as symptoms of paranoia.  Both borderline and bipolar have periods of manic energy where they seem to be almost on fire with their creativity and can be completely amoral in their judgments.  There is also the complementary and inevitable depression., which can also be born of anger.
Tolkiens creation of the character of Feanor, so much aflame that his birth consumed his mother, surrounded by his half-brothers and half-sisters who he holds in suspicion, so gifted artistically yet ungenerous and amoral, leaves one eager to read more about him.
His oath and the binding of his family to destruction; his treatment of the Teleri and the kin-slaying as well as stranding his own people and half-brother by destroying the swan -boats, denial of the Valar, show him as a meglomaniac as despicable as our human history ever produced.
I could and often do read about Feanor for many hours.

I will respond about Fingolfin as soon as my case load  eases up.  Might be a couple of days.



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Thorin Oakenshield - Rank 6
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A well thought out evaluation Bear! I look forward to seeing your description of Fingolfin in comparison.

-- Edited by Bilbo Baggins on Tuesday 14th of April 2009 05:04:35 PM

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Mr. Baggins
Here is the other half of the Feanor / Fingolfin discussion.
Some Elven characters attract me because of their virtue and complexity.
To many Fingolfin was considered the noblest and most valiant of the sons of Finwë. Fingolfin was also said to be the strongest, most steadfast, and most virtuous of Finwë's sons.
When Tolkien created the character of Fingolfin the world was a very different place. Psychotherapies were dominated by Freud and his disciples.  Adler and Jung and others broke from Freud with their own theories and elements were introduced which changed the ideological framework of understanding human character.  I say this not to overlay a psychological framework over Tolkien's creative efforts but to provide a basis to examine and explain the unique individual psychological  motivations and systemic (or family) dynamics within the context of sibling rivalry that is essential to the story and character development of Fingolfin (and Feanor - just a little). 
In terms of Fingolfin's motives (according to the motivational pyramid of Abraham Maslow) his are of the highest level. This the level of "Self-transcendence".  (That is having a uniting consciousness and "plateau experience" {serene and contemplative} and seems to have had peak experiences (mystic, sacral, ecstatic) with illuminations or insights of their own.   They have an ability of analysis of reality or cognitions of others which change the world. and themselves, perhaps occasionally, perhaps as a usual thing.)
The family dynamics Fingolfin lived within are common ones in modern systemic therapy especially in one of stepbrothers and stepsisters.  Add the obsessive and paranoia (and ego strength) of  Feanor and trouble was sure to follow (again especially with Melkor stirring the pot) Unlike Fëanor, Fingolfin was temperate and forgiving.
Even after Fëanor threatened him with swords and was banished from Tirion, Fingolfin forgave him and tried to mend their relationship.

There are many heroic deeds that one can use as evidence to the claim of Fingolfin,
But my favorite is his hopeless yet valiant challenge of Morgoth outside the gates of Angband.
It is also one of my favorite passages in all of Tolkiens work. It is poetic, rich with images, succinct yet vivid.
The quote,

"Therefore Morgoth came, climbing slowly from his subterranean throne, and the rumor of his feet was like thunder underground. And he issued forth clad in black armour; and he stood before the King like a tower, iron-crowned, and his vast shield, sable unblazoned, cast a shadow over him like a stormcloud. But Fingolfin gleamed beneath it as a star; for his mail was overlaid with silver, and his blue shield was set with crystals; and he drew his sword Ringil, that glittered like ice.
Then Morgoth hurled aloft Grond, the Hammer of the Underworld, and swung it down like a bolt of thunder. But Fingolfin sprang aside, and Grond rent a mighty pit in the earth whence smoke and fire darted. Many times Morgoth essayed to smite him, and each time Fingolfin leaped away, as a lighting shoots from under a dark cloud; and he wounded Morgoth with seven wounds, and seven times Morgoth gave a cry of anguish, whereat the hosts of Angband fell upon their faces in dismay, and the cries echoed in the Northlands.
But at last the King grew weary, and Morgoth bore down his shield upon him. Thrice he was crushed to his knees, and thrice arose again and bore up his broken shield and stricken helm. But the earth was all rent and pitted about him, and he stumbled and fell backward before the feet of Morgoth; and Morgoth set his left foot upon his neck, and the weight of it was like a fallen hill. Yet with his last and desperate stroke Fingolfin hewed the foot with Ringil, and the blood gushed forth black and smoking and filled the pits of Grond.

Thus died Fingolfin, High King of the Noldor, most proud and valiant of the Elven-Kings of old. The Orcs made no boast of that duel at the gate; neither do the Elves sing of it, for their sorrow is too deep."

(The Silmarillion, Quenta Silmarillion, Chapter XVIII - Of the Ruin of Beleriand and the Fall of Fingolfin, pgs 153 - 154)


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Once again I find myself in awe of the depth and quality of conversation. An innocent, fundamental question by a "confuse bear" (yeah right) draws out not only the religious but also psychological intricacies that are often overlooked or simply ignored.

There are many times where Tolkien speaks to the duality that is ever present in the never ending battle between good and evil. I think this symbology is sometimes down played or overlooked because of the grand events going on when they are mentioned or the casual mention of them in context.

One more blattened example is in the Silmarillion concerning the Numenoreans. In the king's court a temple is built in honor (worship?) of Morgoth at Sauron's insistance. This temple contains Nimloth for a time. The decendant of one of the trees of light. Thus is a light (goodness) encased in darkness (evil). Eventually the tree is hewn down and of course Numenor is drowned.

Another is the schizophrenia of Gollum/Smeagol. A good creature, as far as we know once containing a dark side evident by his ability to murder if correctly motivated. Then the battle within himself between the predominatly harmless Smeagol always in contention with his dark muderous Gollum side.

In all religions and pathologies there is a nessacity to achieve, or at least sense, a balance with all things; dark, light, good, evil. Within ourselves and our environments we go to great lengths to keep our proverbial plates spinning and fit in all of our work, leisure and family time. When we feel out of balance we become stressed out, angry, and/or depressed. Our various architectures and cultures are full of balance of space, building, and symbols.

I don't know about everyone else but I vary rarely feel like I'm doing a good job keeping my plates spinning and at any given time I may loose one. I think that is one of the reasons that Tolkien's works appeal so heavily to me. On all levels they are so well balanced that you don't stop to think why good always wins or why his thoughts were dark with new world order and anihalative concepts. It all just balances out.

On a lighter note I think of all the elves I find Luthien's courage and faith most moving and often downplayed. She risked all for someone she loved and face a foe few could even bear to hear the name of. What's more she overcame him peacefully (through song and enchantment). Morgoth being governed greatly by song and harmony probably helped.

I don't like to read to much into an authors works other than the story that they are telling but I think with a mind as complex as Tolkien's it's unavoidable to find hidden and double meanings.



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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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lomoduin,
I appreciate your weighing in on this.
I think your analysis on the duality and moral polarity is right on.
Human beings seem to crave the battle between good vs. evil and expect good to win. You can see it very clearly in the early American cinema; the good guy  cowboy has the white hat and the bad guy has the black hat.  We even take our various teams in our culture's sports and make the other team the bad guys
C.G. Jung, while defining human personality, explained that each of has positive side called the "Self" (with a capital "S") and a dark negative part called the "Shadow".
These concepts were being written and explained while Tolkien was creating his work.
This is not to say that Tolkien was influenced by Jung but rather to point out that this personality dichotomy was operative in his subconscious.

"In all religions and pathologies there is a necessity to achieve, or at least sense, a balance with all things; dark, light, good, evil. Within ourselves and our environments we go to great lengths to keep our proverbial plates spinning and fit in all of our work, leisure and family time. When we feel out of balance we become stressed out, angry, and/or depressed. Our various architectures and cultures are full of balance of space, building, and symbols."
I agree.  But there is a strong possibility that because we are stressed out, angry, or depressed we are out of balance rather than the "out-of-balance" being the root.  Perhaps both are true.

"I think that is one of the reasons that Tolkien's works appeal so heavily to me. On all levels they are so well balanced that you don't stop to think why good always wins or why his thoughts were dark with new world order and annihilative concepts. It all just balances out."
Every human culture discovered  so far has an "Apocalyptic" vision.  And this "vision" often becomes the mythological or religious element that brings the concepts of good vs. evil into balance.  Because of Tolkien's work in many cultures (Nordic, English, Celtic, etc.) he would be constantly exposed to these "visions" which would have an inevitable influence.
" I don't like to read to much into an authors works other than the story that they are telling but I think with a mind as complex as Tolkien's it's unavoidable to find hidden and double meanings.'
You couldn't be more right on.

I think your choice of  Luthien is a great choice.  Her faith, courage, and uncompromising devotion, and love make her one of my favorites too.


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Thorin Oakenshield - Rank 6
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I think Gollum is a great case for evaluation. The various stages he goes through are quite amazing and the fact that he is within an inch of conquering his utmost fear at the Cirith Ungol pass is quite astounding. But I don't think I'd be able to go into all the psychology of Gollum now. I think there is a thread on it somewhere called 'Gollum Psychology' or some such. Well worth a read.

Typing this quite late at night so going to have to cut it short I'm afraid.

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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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Mr. Baggins,
I followed your advice and searched the Forums for the thread about Gollum.
Certainly was interesting and with the addition of Smeagol an argument could be made with a diagnosis of Paranoid Schizophrenia with homicidal rage.
Getting to the "why" or "causality" of this diagnosis would require several pages.
His life story so briefly told has elements of sensory deprivation, matriarchal social domination, nutritional aberration, poor male role models, psychosis inducing devices (the Ring), and no peer support.  This doesn't include a tenth of factors influencing the diagnosis.

But sticking to the Elf theme I ask this question of everybody;
In the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings who is the Elven King in Mirkwood?  Is this Elu Thingol?





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Rohirrim of Edoras - Rank 4
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Isn't the king of Mirkwood Legolas' father, Tharanduil? I kind of took that for granted. I will review tonight though.

While we're on basic lore, of the three hunters, Aragorn is a king, Legolas is a prince; what is Gimili? Is he royalty also or just rubbing elbows with them?

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Rohirrim of Edoras - Rank 4
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Okay, I did research it. Thanks to the companion that I have I have most of the story. In my own words though,

After the Battle of Dagorlad, where he watched his father die, Thranduil became king of Greenwood. Greenwood, because of growing evil, later became known as Mirkwood. Thranduil had made halls similar to those of Thingol beneath the hills and thus survived the darkening of the forest with his wood-elves.

He threw Thorin Oakenshield in the dungeons when they refused to tell him why they were in his forest and so became entangled in the story of The Hobbit. He made enemies of the dwarves and succoured the men of Dale in the same story. That was the source of the original angst between Gimli and Legolas in The Fellowship of the Ring.
After the Battle of the Five Armies, Aragorn II brought a creature, Gollum, to Thranduil's kingdom as a prisoner. Thranduil agreed to allow Gollum to remain lodged in protective custody within his halls untill it was decided what would be done with him (Gollum). That same year, Gollum escaped. Thranduil sent his son, Legolas,as a herald to Elrond's kingdom with tidings of this escape. In this way, Legolas became envolved with the same family of dwarves as his father and also was caught up in the tale of the ring.

Meanwhile, alerted by Gollum's escape, Thranduil made preperations for war. On March 15th an army from Dol Guldur attacked Thranduil's domain and though many elves were slain and much damage was caused to the woods Thranduil managed to repel the forces. He remained in Middle Earth after the turn of the Fourth age but it's not certain if he sailed to the undying lands or not.

A bit long winded and I'm sure there's more to the story but that's all I had time for this evening.

Hope it helps!!

-- Edited by lomoduin on Thursday 7th of May 2009 03:23:43 AM

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Lord Elrond of Rivendell - Rank 9
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lomoduin,
Thanks for the research and the answer.
You were not long winded.You gave me the answer and the background that tied up the loose ends where I was confused.
Got it...it was Gloin who was upset about the remembered indignity of being imprisoned by Elven-king
And Gimli was glad to carry the righteous indignation of his father Gloin.
"You were less tender to me," said Gloin with a flash of his eyes. as old memories were stirred of his imprisonment in the deep places of the Elven-king's halls. (Lord of the Rings, Fellowship of the Ring, Book Two, Chapter II - "The Council of Elrond", pg 255)
"
That was the source of the original angst between Gimli and Legolas in The Fellowship of the Ring."
You got it right on.
Nice work.
Bear


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Thorin Oakenshield - Rank 6
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Yep, all sounds about right to mesmile.gif

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