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Berúthiel

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'''Queen Berúthiel''' was a Queen of [[Gondor]].
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{{gondorian infobox
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| image=[[Image:Paula_DiSante_-_Reporting_to_Beruthiel.JPG|250px]]
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| name=Berúthiel
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| othernames=
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| titles=Queen of [[Gondor]]
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| position=
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| location=[[Gondor]]
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| affiliation=
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| language=
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| birth=Early [[Third Age]]
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| death=
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| age=
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| house=
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| parentage=
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| siblings=
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| spouse=[[Tarannon Falastur|Tarannon]]
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| children=None
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| gender=Female
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| height=
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| hair=
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| eyes=
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}}{{Pronounce|Beruthiel.mp3|Ardamir}}
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'''Berúthiel''' was a Queen of [[Gondor]] in the early part of the [[Third Age]]. She was the wife of King [[Tarannon Falastur]], and was noted as being "nefarious, solitary, and loveless". It is therefore of no surprise that she and Tarannon produced no heirs.
  
She was the wife of King [[Tarannon Falastur]] of Gondor, and was noted as being "nefarious, solitary, and loveless". It is therefore of no surprise that Tarannon died childless.
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==History==
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Berúthiel was a [[Black Númenóreans|Black Númenórean]]<ref name=Interview/>, a race that was often at war with the [[Dúnedain]] of Gondor. Most of the Black Númenóreans lived to the south of Gondor in the [[Umbar]] and other colonies. Presumably, Berúthiel was born in one of these southern areas.
  
According to the [[Unfinished Tales]]:
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Due to the hostility between the two races, Falastur's reason for marrying her is unclear, but he brought her to live with him in his house by the [[Belegaer|Sea]] near [[Pelargir]]. She hated Pelargir (loathing the smell of the sea, and fish, and the [[gulls]]<ref name=Interview/>), however, and dwelt in the [[King's House]] in [[Osgiliath]] instead. There she decorated the courtyard with strange and disturbing sculptures but kept the inside of the house mostly bare. She herself wore dark, drab clothing and "hated all making, all colours and elaborate adornments".
  
:''"She had nine black cats and one white, her slaves, with whom she conversed, or read their memories, setting them to discover all the dark secrets of Gondor,&hellip; setting the white cat to spy upon the black, and tormenting them. No man in Gondor dared touch them; all were afraid of them, and cursed when they saw them pass."'' &mdash; '''Unfinished Tales''', note 7 to '''The Istari'''.
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Berúthiel loathed cats, but they became attracted to her for precisely that reason. They followed her around, and eventually she took advantage of their company by enslaving and torturing them. In total she had ten cats, nine black and one white. Berúthiel set the black cats to spy on the [[Men]] of Gondor and the white cat to spy on the black ones. She managed to learn many dark secrets about the realm and its people by conversing with them and "read[ing] their memories". These cats were infamous among the Gondorians, but they dared not touch them; however, Men would curse whenever they saw one pass by them.
  
Her name was removed from the Books of the Kings (but not from the memory of [[Men]]), and [[Tarannon]] had her set adrift on sea in a ship with her cats:
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Eventually, Tarannon exiled Berúthiel from Gondor due to her deeds and erased her name from the [[Book of the Kings]]. He sent her and her cats back to her southern homeland on a ship that "was last seen flying past Umbar with a cat at the masthead and another as a figurehead on the prow".<ref>{{UT|Istari}}, note 7</ref>
  
:''"The ship was last seen flying past Umbar under a sickle moon, with a cat at the masthead and another as a figure-head on the prow."'' &mdash; ibid.
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==Legacy==
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It is possible that Berúthiel made her way home and told the Black Númenóreans of her treatment by the Gondorians, for soon after Tarannon's death, they made war with Gondor and took over the Haven of Umbar.
  
In an interview [1] Tolkien had in 1966 he added the following information on her:
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Despite the erasure of her name from Gondor's records, Berúthiel and her cats were so notorious that they were held in the memory of Gondorians for centuries; [[Aragorn]] alluded to them more than 2,000 years after her death.<ref>{{FR|II4}}</ref>
  
:''Well, Berúthiel went back to live in the inland city, and went to the bad (or returned to it &mdash; she was a Black Númenórean in origin, I guess). She was one of these people who loathe cats, but cats will jump on them and follow them about &mdash; you know how sometimes they pursue people who hate them? I have a friend like that. I'm afraid she took to torturing them for amusement, but she kept some and used them: trained them to go on evil errands by night, to spy on her enemies or terrify them.''
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==Etymology==
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The name ''Berúthiel'' is [[Sindarin]]. It seems to mean "Angry Queen", incorporating ''[[bereth|ber(eth)]]'', 'queen, spouse'; ''[[rúth]]'', which means 'anger'; and the feminine suffix ''[[-iel]]''. Since the Black Númenóreans did not use the [[Elvish|Elven tongues]], this title was probably given to her by the Gondorians and is not her real name.
  
Piecing all this info together, it can be surmised that Berúthiel was a [[Black Númenórean]] from an unnamed Black Númenórean settlement south of [[Umbar]] (there were several, mentioned a couple of times but never mapped or named), and that Tarannon probably married her in an attempt to settle the feuds Gondor had with the more southern Númenórean realms in exile. Berúthiel probably returned home, and her expulsion from Gondor must have reignited hostilities between the Black Númenórean realms and Gondor, which eventually lead to the capture of Umbar in 933 [[Third Age|T.A.]] after a new war.
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==Inspiration==
  
[[Tolkien]] disliked cats, and it seems that Berúthiel was associated with evil because of her cats, or vice versa.
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In an interview from 1966, Tolkien likened Berúthiel to the giantess [[Wikipedia:Skaði|Skaði]] of Norse mythology, since they both shared a dislike for "seaside life".<ref name=Interview>{{webcite|author=[[Daphne Castell]]|articleurl=http://www.festivalintheshire.com/journal1bdx/inttolkien.html|articlename=The Realms of Tolkien|dated=|website=[http://www.festivalintheshire.com/journal1bdx/index.html ''Festival in the Shire Journal'', Issue 1]|accessed=7 May 2012}}</ref><ref>[[Humphrey Carpenter]], ''[[The Inklings (book)|The Inklings]]'', "Thursday evenings", pp. 137-8</ref>
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{{References}}
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{{DEFAULTSORT:Beruthiel}}
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[[Category:Black Númenóreans]]
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[[Category:Gondorians]]
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[[Category:Sindarin names]]
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[[de:Berúthiel]]
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[[fr:encyclo:personnages:hommes:3a:dunedain:gondoriens:beruthiel]]
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[[fi:Berúthiel]]

Revision as of 10:02, 6 April 2013

Paula DiSante - Reporting to Beruthiel.JPG
Berúthiel
Gondorian
Biographical Information
TitlesQueen of Gondor
LocationGondor
BirthEarly Third Age
Family
SpouseTarannon
ChildrenNone
Physical Description
GenderFemale

Berúthiel was a Queen of Gondor in the early part of the Third Age. She was the wife of King Tarannon Falastur, and was noted as being "nefarious, solitary, and loveless". It is therefore of no surprise that she and Tarannon produced no heirs.

Contents

History

Berúthiel was a Black Númenórean[1], a race that was often at war with the Dúnedain of Gondor. Most of the Black Númenóreans lived to the south of Gondor in the Umbar and other colonies. Presumably, Berúthiel was born in one of these southern areas.

Due to the hostility between the two races, Falastur's reason for marrying her is unclear, but he brought her to live with him in his house by the Sea near Pelargir. She hated Pelargir (loathing the smell of the sea, and fish, and the gulls[1]), however, and dwelt in the King's House in Osgiliath instead. There she decorated the courtyard with strange and disturbing sculptures but kept the inside of the house mostly bare. She herself wore dark, drab clothing and "hated all making, all colours and elaborate adornments".

Berúthiel loathed cats, but they became attracted to her for precisely that reason. They followed her around, and eventually she took advantage of their company by enslaving and torturing them. In total she had ten cats, nine black and one white. Berúthiel set the black cats to spy on the Men of Gondor and the white cat to spy on the black ones. She managed to learn many dark secrets about the realm and its people by conversing with them and "read[ing] their memories". These cats were infamous among the Gondorians, but they dared not touch them; however, Men would curse whenever they saw one pass by them.

Eventually, Tarannon exiled Berúthiel from Gondor due to her deeds and erased her name from the Book of the Kings. He sent her and her cats back to her southern homeland on a ship that "was last seen flying past Umbar with a cat at the masthead and another as a figurehead on the prow".[2]

Legacy

It is possible that Berúthiel made her way home and told the Black Númenóreans of her treatment by the Gondorians, for soon after Tarannon's death, they made war with Gondor and took over the Haven of Umbar.

Despite the erasure of her name from Gondor's records, Berúthiel and her cats were so notorious that they were held in the memory of Gondorians for centuries; Aragorn alluded to them more than 2,000 years after her death.[3]

Etymology

The name Berúthiel is Sindarin. It seems to mean "Angry Queen", incorporating ber(eth), 'queen, spouse'; rúth, which means 'anger'; and the feminine suffix -iel. Since the Black Númenóreans did not use the Elven tongues, this title was probably given to her by the Gondorians and is not her real name.

Inspiration

In an interview from 1966, Tolkien likened Berúthiel to the giantess Skaði of Norse mythology, since they both shared a dislike for "seaside life".[1][4]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Daphne Castell, "The Realms of Tolkien" , Festival in the Shire Journal, Issue 1 (accessed 7 May 2012)
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, "The Istari", note 7
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, "A Journey in the Dark"
  4. Humphrey Carpenter, The Inklings, "Thursday evenings", pp. 137-8