Monday, January 2, 2012

The Silmarillion Essay

The Silmarillion Essay

The Silmarillion takes place after the beginning of the world, but before Arda, the Earth, was fully finished, and at the start of the First War. The Valar are the first beings on Arda, and therefore they rule it. It is understood that Illuvatar made the Valar and that Elves and Men will enter the world when he chooses.

The First War is between the Valar and Melkor, who was a Valar, but wants the world to himself. Feanor, who hates him, later calls him Morgorth. With the help of Tulkas, the war is won by the Valar, and Melkor is sentenced to three ages in the Halls of Mandos. Mandos is where the spirits of the dead go. One of the Valar, called Aule, creates Dwarves, and Illuvatar orders them to be asleep until their time comes to enter the world. At this time eagles were made, and sent to dwell in the mountains. Melkor makes his stronghold, Angband also. 


The Firstborn wake up from the sleep of Illuvatar and enter the world. They are also called Elves and the Quendi. Of the Elves there are three branches, the Noldor, Teleri, and Avari. Each of the branches live in a different part of Middle- earth. The King of the Noldor is Finwe. His sons are Feanor, Fingolfin, and Finarfin. Feanor's sons are Maedros, Maglor, Celegorm, Caranthir, Curufin, Amrod, and Amras.

During this time Melkor was set free. Feanor creates the Silmarils from the light of the Trees of Valinor, and thus Melkor wanted them. In his plan to cause Feanor to go against his brothers, Melkor spreads lies. Feanor ends up breaking the peace of Valinor and was sentenced to twelve years leave of Tirion, despite the fact that Melkor was exposed. His sons and father, King Finwe, join him in his banishment.

After the twelve years Melkor was again up to mischief. He teamed up with Ungoliant, and evil spider creature, to bring darkness to the world. The Trees of Valinor lit the world, and this Melkor knew. Ungoliant cast webs of darkness while Melkor cut the trees. She then in turn drank their sap and their light faded and ceased. At this opportunity, he killed Finwe and took the Silmarils. Feanor was with the Valar and Finwe was guarding the Silmarils.

Very soon after this, Feanor gathered the Noldor together and made an oath to which they all stood by. They would not stop until the Noldor held again the Silmarils. On their journey to Angband, they ended up at a sea. The Teleri had ships that they would not give up, and thus Feanor killed the Teleri for them. Once they reached land, a dark figure stood before them. The figure cursed the Noldor, and Feanor gave a brave speech in response. Nevertheless, Finarfin and some of his followers turned back. As soon as the Noldor reached the far shores, they continued on foot. They were met by Dwarves, which came into Middle- earth not long before. Of all the Elven races, the Dwarves of Beleriand befriended the Noldor the easiest.

King Thingol of the Teleri in Middle- earth gave the Dwarves pearls. In turn, they built him Menegroth. The First War of the Elves began with Orcs, evil creatures of Melkor, fighting against Thingol.

The Two Trees of Valinor bore two last things, a fruit and a flower. They became the Moon and the Sun. Anar, the fire- golden guided the Sun, and Isil, the Sheen the Vanyar of old steered the Moon. At the rising of the Sun Men awoke in Hildorien, in eastern Middle- earth.

Ard- galen was the place of the Second Battle of the Elves, called Dagor- nuin- Giliath. The Noldor were taken at unawares, but were swiftly victorious. At this battle were Balrogs sent from Angband. Feanor fought and was smitten to the ground by the Lord of Balrogs. His sons came to him immediately after, and were told to avenge him and to hold to their oath.

The Third Battle lasted four- hundred years long and was called Dagor- Aglareb, the Glorious Battle. The Noldor also won this, and destroyed the servants of Melkor up to the Gates of Angband. They were unsuccessful at obtaining the Silmarils at the Siege of Angband.

Turgon ruled a secret city called Gondolin. His sister, Aredhel wanted to leave the city to visit her kin, the Noldor, who were outside the walls of Gondolin. This he barely allowed. Turgon did not want anyone outside to know where Gondolin was located. Therefore he sent with Aredhel three Lords of his household. Though she lost them, she went on. She did not find the Noldor either and ended up wandering through Nan Elmoth. A Dwarf named Eol set an enchantment upon her and she could not find her way out and came to his dwelling. They wed and had a son named Maeglin.

When Men first came into the world Morgorth's spies were watching and the Men were filled with fear and lies of the Quendi.

Amid the many wars that followed, some beings found light in love, such as Beren and Luthien. Beren proved to be very brave and when he came across Luthien he loved her at first sight. Her father was King Thingol and since she was a Vala, she was not allowed to love a mortal man. Thus her father gave him a task he thought was impossible, to take a Silmaril from Morgorth, which was set in the Iron Crown. Luthien's love for Beren was great and she joined him on this quest, despite the attempts of her father to keep her in Doriath. With the help of Huan, a werewolf of Celegorm and Curufin, they were reunited after Beren left for Angband. There Huan fought Sauron, the most powerful of Morgorth's servants. Sauron escaped from Huan as a vampire into Taur- nu- Fuin. The thralls were freed and they found Beren in a dark deep pit. Eventually Beren meets up with Morgorth and obtains a Silmaril, but gets his hand cut off. Beren dies by a werewolf, called Carcharoth. Luthien gives up her immortality to bring back Beren and to live with him in Middle- earth.

After the Fifth Battle called Nirnaeth Arnoediad, Doriath and Gondolin both fell by ruin of Morgorth. The Silmarils were lost forever, one cast into the fiery inner earth, and the other into the depths of the sea. The third stays in the sky by Earendil, who loved Elwing.

The last war called the War of Wrath, was the greatest war of all. It was not just between the Noldor and Morgorth, but the Valar, Elves, Dwarves and Men too. The Valar were victorious, and destroyed were the Balrogs and Orcs, few of which survived to the later years of Middle- earth. Angband was finally destroyed.

Morgorth was thrust through the Door of the Night into the Timeless Void. A guard was forever set upon those doors, yet the deeds of Morgorth remain visible. In the hearts of Elves and Men lies the power of terror and hate. That power is said to bear dark fruit until the end of days.

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