During his lifetime, the father of Arveleg, Argeleb son of Malvegil, was the only King in Arnor that still had Isildur's heritage. As such, he claimed lordship over Rhudaur and Cardolan. The men of Rhudaur resisted this claim, and a captain of the Hill-men of that land formed a secret alliance with Argeleb's enemy, the Witch-king of Angmar. Thus Arveleg grew up in an era of War. The armies of Angmar and Rhudaur laid siege to the Weather Hills, and Argeleb fell. And so, in T.A. 1356, Arveleg became the eighth King of Arthedain.
With the help of the Dúnedain of Cardolan and the Elves of Lindon, Arveleg managed to drive out the enemies from the Weather Hills. Arthedain and Cardolan kept a guarded border along the Weather Hills, the Great East Road and the lower Hoarwell. This defense was apparently effective, as Angmar shifted its attention to Rivendell instead.
In T.A. 1409, the armies of Angmar and Rhudaur crossed the Hoarwell, occupied Cardolan, and closed in on Weathertop. In a bloody battle, both Arveleg and the last prince of Cardolan were slain. The palantír of Amon Sûl could be saved, however, and was brought to the capital of Arthedain, Fornost.
After his death, Arveleg was succeeded by his 18-year old son, Araphor. Though this was a young age for one of Númenórean blood, he was valiant. With the help of the Círdan of Lindon, he repelled attacks on Fornost and the North DownsTemplate:Ref.
Portrayal in adaptations
The events surrounding Arveleg play a major role in Electronic Arts' video game The Rise of the Witch-king. Arveleg, voiced by Cam Clarke, is portrayed as using the palantír of Amon Sûl to anticipate the Witch-king's plans. He survives the Fall of Amon Sûl and takes the palantír with him, but destroys it (and himself in the process) to prevent it from falling in the Witch-king's hands.