Category: silmarillion

Umbar was a major Númenorean
port city in Harad, off the Bay of Belfalas, that went from a major Gondorian trading port to a pirate haven. Founded by the Númenóreans during their colonizing of Middle Earth, under Ar-Pharazôn it was the staging point for his invasion and subjugation of Sauron. When Númenor collapsed the city came under the control of the King’s Men (Black Númenóreans who sided with the dark cult of Morgoth). With
Númenor destroyed and the remaining Númenorean colonies under control of
the Faithful (Those who stayed loyal to the Valar), Umbar became more closely
aligned with Morgoth’s other allies such as neighboring Harad. By the beginning
of the Third Age the city remained under Gondor’s control, and they were able
to repel many of the Harad invasions until the Kin-strife (Castamir’s attempt to seize power). The civil war weakened Gondor and allowed Umbar to become independent and the city become a corsair haven. The Corsairs of Umbar
were a mix of the King’s Men, Castamir the Usurper’s supporters from the Kin-strife, and local
Haradrim who joined the powerful city-state. Gondor was not able to reclaim the
city for hundreds of years due to the Great Plague, Mordor’s incursions into
Ithilien, and Corsair raids along the Belfalas coast. Significant battles in
the latter half of the Third Age include The Corsair raid on Pelargir which killed King Minardil. Minardil’s ancestor King Umbardacil briefly recapturing Umbar but
being ousted by the Haradrim, and Thorongil (Aragorn) leading
a raid that sabotaged the Corsair fleet just prior to the War of the Ring.
During the War of the Ring Umbar had joined Sauron and sent their remaining
fleet to attack Gondor, however Aragorn summoned the Army of the Dead
(Oathbreakers from the Second Age) to frighten and ultimately rout the
Corsairs. With the destruction of Sauron came the scattering and ruin of his
cult, and Umbar fell back into the fold of the Reunited Kingdom. Aragorn 2, Corsairs 0.

“There at
Pelargir lay the main fleet of Umbar, fifty great ships and smaller vessels
beyond count. Many of those that we pursued had reached the havens before us,
and brought their fear with them; and some of the ships had put off, seeking to
escape down the River or to reach the far shore; and many of the smaller craft
were ablaze. But the Haradrim, being now driven to the brink, turned at bay,
and they were fierce in despair; and they laughed when they looked on us, for
they were a great army still.

‘But
Aragorn halted and cried with a great voice: “Now come! By the Black Stone I
call you! “ And suddenly the Shadow Host that had hung back at the last came up
like a grey tide, sweeping all away before it. Faint cries I heard, and dim
horns blowing, and a murmur as of countless far voices: it was like the echo of
some forgotten battle in the Dark Years long ago. Pale swords were drawn; but I
know not whether their blades would still bite, for the Dead needed no longer
any weapon but fear. None would withstand them.

‘To every
ship they came that was drawn up, and then they passed over the water to those
that were anchored; and all the mariners were filled with a madness of terror
and leaped overboard, save the slaves chained to the oars. Reckless we rode
among our fleeing foes, driving them like leaves, until we came to the shore.
And then to each of the great ships that remained Aragorn sent one of the
Dúnedain, and they comforted the captives that were aboard, and bade them put
aside fear and be free.”

– Gimli
telling how the Three Hunters captured the Corsairs’ ships. Return of the King, The Last Debate

The spouse of Aulë is Yavanna, the Giver of Fruits. She is the lover of all things that grow in the earth, and all their countless forms she holds in her mind, from the trees like towers in forests long ago to the moss upon stones or the small and secret things in the mould. In reverence Yavanna is next to Varda among the Queens of the Valar. In the form of a woman she is tall, and robed in green; but at times she takes other shapes. Some there are who have seen her standing like a tree under heaven, crowned with the Sun; and from all its branches there spilled a golden dew upon the barren earth, and it grew green with corn; but the roots of the tree were in the waters of Ulmo, and the winds of Manwë spoke in its leaves. Kementári, Queen of the Earth, she is surnamed in the Eldarin tongue.

To Men Morgoth feigned pity, if any would hearken to his messages, saying that their woes came only of their servitude to the rebel Noldor, but at the hands of the rightful Lord of Middle-earth they would get honour and a just reward of valour, if they would leave rebellion. But few men of the Three Houses of the Edain would give ear to him, not even were they brought to the torment of Angband. Therefore Morgoth pursued them with hatred; and he sent his messengers over the mountains.

It is told that at this time the Swarthy Men came first into Beleriand. Some were already secretly under the dominion of Morgoth, and came at his call; but not all, for the rumour of Beleriand, of its lands and waters, of its wars and riches, went now far and wide, and the wandering feet of Men were ever set westward in those days. These Men were short and broad, long and strong in the arm; their skins were swart or sallow, and their hair was dark as were their eyes. Their houses were many, and some had greater liking for the Dwarves of the mountains than for the Elves.

tolkienmatters:

camellia93:

The Silmarillion
http://www.ae-lib.org.ua/texts-c/tolkien__the_silmarillion__en.htm

The Hobbit
https://www.lake.k12.fl.us/cms/lib/FL01000799/Centricity/Domain/4432/The%20Hobbit%20byJ%20%20RR%20Tolkien%20EBOOK.pdf

The Lord of the Rings
1) http://ae-lib.org.ua/texts-c/tolkien__the_lord_of_the_rings_1__en.htm
2) http://ae-lib.org.ua/texts-c/tolkien__the_lord_of_the_rings_2__en.htm
3) http://ae-lib.org.ua/texts-c/tolkien__the_lord_of_the_rings_3__en.htm

The Children of Hurin
https://ia801006.us.archive.org/3/items/J.R.R.TolkienTheChildrenOfHurin/J.R.R.Tolkien%20-%20The%20Children%20of%20Hurin.pdf

Beren and Lúthien
(best available version) https://www.dropbox.com/s/3sdi8p1p8b3ctvi/JRR%20%26%20Christopher%20Tolkien%20-%20Beren%20and%20Luthien%20%28v5.0%29.epub?dl=0
and (web version) https://www.redbrick.dcu.ie/~melmoth/p1.html

Unfinished Tales
http://ae-lib.org.ua/texts-c/tolkien__unfinished_tales__en.htm

History of Middle-earth
1-2. The Book of Lost Tales 1 and 2 http://tolkienjrrlosttales.blogspot.co.uk/
3. The Lays of Beleriand http://www.e-reading.club/bookreader.php/138990/Tolkien_03_The_Lays_of_Beleriand.pdf
4. The Shaping of Middle-earth https://vk.com/doc20746184_255404401?hash=ff4eee42a196ecb339&dl=7c37abba760696ff17
5. The Lost Road and Other Writings http://www.e-reading.club/bookreader.php/138991/Tolkien_05_The_Lost_Road_and_Other_Writings.pdf
6. The Return of the Shadow (The History of The Lord of the Rings I)  http://www.e-reading.club/bookreader.php/138993/Tolkien_06_The_Return_of_the_Shadow.pdf
7. The Treason of Isengard (The History of The Lord of the Rings II) http://www.e-reading.club/bookreader.php/138995/Tolkien_07_The_Treason_of_Isengard.pdf
8. The War of the Ring (The History of The Lord of the Rings III) http://www.e-reading.club/bookreader.php/138997/Tolkien_08_The_War_of_the_Ring.pdf
9. Sauron Defeated (The History of The Lord of the Rings IV) http://www.e-reading.club/bookreader.php/138987/Tolkien_09_Sauron_Defeated.pdf
10. Morgoth’s Ring https://1drv.ms/b/s!Ao3sDPKlSLY5gxZPojP6tng2xNgC
11. The War of the Jewels http://www.e-reading.club/bookreader.php/138996/Tolkien_11_The_War_of_the_Jewels.pdf
12. The Peoples of Middle-earth http://vk.com/doc20746184_255404477?hash=ea2f3c0d696aa70b58&dl=285dc85f4f3a91b2ea

The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien
https://timedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2014/12/the_letters_of_j.rrtolkien.pdf

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Tolkien’s books irrelevant to Middle-earth:
Tales from the Perilous Realm
http://1.droppdf.com/files/ww8AQ/tales-from-the-perilous-realm-roverandom-j-r-r-tolkien.pdf

The Fall of King Arthur
https://www.readanybook.com/online/565599#357338

The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún
http://www.readsbird.com/legend-sigurd-and-gudrun-j-r-r-tolkien

Essay on Fairy Stories
http://brainstorm-services.com/wcu-2004/fairystories-tolkien.pdf

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Links to learn Tolkien’s languages:

Sindarin
http://sindarinlessons.weebly.com/lessons.html

Quenya
http://folk.uib.no/hnohf/qcourse.htm

Ardalambion
One of the most comprehensive sites about all Tolkien’s invented languages
https://folk.uib.no/hnohf/

For whom it may concern.

tolkienmatters:

The Helcaraxë, also referred to as the Grinding Ice, was a large glacier connecting Aman and Middle Earth during the First Age. It is described as a frozen wasteland and a bridge between the two worlds. It was first noted as the escape route of Melkor and Ungoliant after they defiled the Two Trees and were being hunted by the Valar. It was later part of the mass exodus of Noldor from Valinor into Middle Earth. Fëanor had rallied his people to war against Morgoth for the Silmarils, and turned his back on the Valar. He led his host to the shores of Aman, seizing the boats from the Teleri in the First Kinslaying with aid from the host of Fingolfin. With these boats he lead his own host across the sea to Middle Earth, but when they landed in Beleriand, they burned the ships – stranding Fingolfin’s people in Aman. Fëanor believed them to be useless, and still

harbored

hatred for Fingolfin from an earlier feud. Fingolfin refused to return to the Valar in shame after having followed Feanor, and in a curse to Fëanor’s name, and lead his people north to cross the Helcaraxë, to meet him in Middle Earth. Among the people that crossed were Galadriel and Finrod. Among those who died were Elenwë, wife of Turgon, and many others. The Helcaraxë was destroyed during the War of Wrath, along with most of Beleriand. A modern world comparison would be the Beringia land bridge formed millions of years ago, where humans from Asia migrated into North America.

“The Noldor came at last far into the north of Arda; and they saw the first teeth of the ice that floated in the sea, and knew that they were drawing nigh to the 

Helcaraxë, For between the land of Aman that in the north curved eastward, and the east-shores of Endor (Which is Middle-earth) that bore westward, there was a narrow strait, through which the chill waters of the Encircling Sea and the waves of Belegaer flowed together, and there were vast fogs and mists of deathly cold, and the sea-streams were filled with clashing hills of ice and the grinding of ice deep-sunken. Such was the Helcaraxë, and there none yet had dared to tread save the Valar only and Ungoliant.” – The Helcaraxë description, Of the Flight of the Noldor, The Silmarillion.

Among those of his servants that have names the greatest was that spirit whom the Eldar called Sauron, or Gorthaur the Cruel. In his beginning he was of the Maiar of Aulë, and he remained mighty in the lore of that people. In all the deeds of Melkor the Morgoth upon Arda, in his vast works and in the deceits of his cunning, Sauron had a part, and was only less evil than his master in that for long he served another and not himself. But in after years he rose like a shadow of Morgoth and a ghost of his malice, and walked behind him on the same ruinous path down into the Void.

tolkienmatters:

Valacirca, Quenya for “Sickle Of The Valar”, was a constellation of stars. Known as the Wain or Plough to the hobbits, and the Great Bear to Men. The stars came from Varda, Queen of the Valar. She created the stars from the dew of Telperion the White Tree, Elder of the Two Trees of Valinor. The world was lit so that Middle Earth could share the light of Valinor. This was before the coming of the First-Born (Elves), and Melkor had just escaped and created his armies of evil in Middle Earth; building Angbad, his great armory. In an effort to combat his growing influence over Middle-Earth and support the coming Elves the stars were wrought. Symbols among the stars included Menelmacar, “The Swordsmen Of The Sky” in Quenya, who prophesied the Last Battle, Though it is considered to be Túrin Turamabar. The Valacirca was created as a sign of doom to Melkor, seven stars set to swing and end Melkor. In the modern world Menelmacar is Orion and Valacirca is the Big Dipper.

“And in answer he sang a song of challenge that he had made in praise of the Seven Stars, the Sickle of the Valar that Varda hung above the North as a sign for the fall of Morgoth. Then all the strength left him and he fell down into darkness. – Beren answering the song of Lúthien Tinúviel during the battle at the Isle of Sauron. Part of the epic Lay of Lethian. The Silmarillion, Of Beren and Lúthien.  

tolkienmatters:

“Farewell sweet earth and northern sky,
for ever blest, since here did lie
and here with lissom limbs did run
beneath the Moon, beneath the Sun,
Lúthien Tinúviel
more fair than mortal tongue can tell.
Though all to ruin fell the world
and were dissolved and backward hurled
unmade into the old abyss,
yet were its making good, for this,
the dusk, the dawn, the earth, the sea,
that Lúthien for a time should be.”

— Beren’s Song of Parting to Luthien, Quenta Silmarillion, Of Beren and Lúthien.

tolkienmatters:

Gorlim The Unhappy was a man during the First Age. He served Barahir during the ill-fated battle of Dagor Bragollach, though they fought bravely (and saved Finrod) the battle was a massive defeat and all the land of Barahir fell under Morgoth’s control. Gorlim survived the disaster and returned home only to find his home plundered and his wife, Eilinel, missing. He returned to Barahir’s service during his time as an outlaw. Often times during Barahir’s guerrilla war Gorlim would return to his destroyed home in hopes Eilinel would return as well. This knowledge passed to Morgoth, where Sauron set a trap at Gorlim’s home. Gorlim returned to his home and saw a shimmering light, and his wife Eilinel, However it was a trap and he was captured by Morgoth’s orcs. He was tortured and interrogated but gave no information, and ultimately was brought before Sauron who made a deal with Gorlim; Reveal the location of Barahir and his followers and he would see his wife again. Gorlim accepted this deal and surrendered Barahir’s hiding spot; Dorthonion.

Sauron revealed to Gorlim that his wife Eilinel had been dead this whole time, and he would be returned to her. Gorlim cursed himself and was slain.

Barahir and his men were all killed save his son, Beren. Beren had been out hunting when the ghost of Gorlim appeared to him, revealing his treachery and warning him. Beren was too late, but would recover the Ring of Barahir from the orcs.

“Thus guerdon shall he have that bore
these tidings sweet, O traitor dear!
For Eilinel she dwells not here,
but in the shades of death doth roam
widowed of husband and of home – 
a wraith of that which might have been, 
methinks, it is that thou hast seen!
Now shalt thou through the gates of pain
the land thou askest grimly gain;
thou shalt to the moonless mist of hell
descend and seek thy Eilinel.”

– Sauron’s speech before executing Gorlim. Beren and Lúthien, The Lay of Leithian, Canto 2, Lines 72 – 82 (Extract).

The Helcaraxë, also referred to as the Grinding Ice, was a large glacier connecting Aman and Middle Earth during the First Age. It is described as a frozen wasteland and a bridge between the two worlds. It was first noted as the escape route of Melkor and Ungoliant after they defiled the Two Trees and were being hunted by the Valar. It was later part of the mass exodus of Noldor from Valinor into Middle Earth. Fëanor had rallied his people to war against Morgoth for the Silmarils, and turned his back on the Valar. He led his host to the shores of Aman, seizing the boats from the Teleri in the First Kinslaying with aid from the host of Fingolfin. With these boats he lead his own host across the sea to Middle Earth, but when they landed in Beleriand, they burned the ships -stranding Fingolfin’s people in Aman. Fëanor believed them to be useless, and still

harbored

hatred for Fingolfin from an earlier feud. Fingolfin refused to return to the Valar in shame after having followed Feanor, and in a curse to Fëanor’s name, and lead his people north to cross the Helcaraxë, to meet him in Middle Earth. Among the people that crossed were Galadriel and Finrod. Among those who died were Elenwë, wife of Turgon, and many others.The Helcaraxë was destroyed during the War of Wrath, along with most of Beleriand. A modern world comparison would be the Beringia land bridge formed millions of years ago, where humans from Asia migrated into North America.

“The Noldor came at last far into the north of Arda; and they saw the first teeth of the ice that floated in the sea, and knew that they were drawing nigh to the 

Helcaraxë, For between the land of Aman that in the north curved eastward, and the east-shores of Endor (Which is Middle-earth) that bore westward, there was a narrow strait, through which the chill waters of the Encircling Sea and the waves of Belegaer flowed together, and there were vast fogs and mists of deathly cold, and the sea-streams were filled with clashing hills of ice and the grinding of ice deep-sunken. Such was the Helcaraxë, and there none yet had dared to tread save the Valar only and Ungoliant.” – The Helcaraxë description, Of the Flight of the Noldor, The Silmarillion.