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Black Númenóreans

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The '''Black Númenóreans''' were originally among the survivors from a [[Men|mannish]] kingdom that had yet been, [[Númenor]], which was destroyed by [[Ilúvatar|Eru]] in the late [[Second Age]].  
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The '''Black Númenóreans''' were [[Númenóreans|High Men]] from [[Númenor]]. They were under the [[Shadow]] like the [[King's Men]], cruel oppressors and overlords over the more primitive [[Middle Men]] of [[Middle-earth]]. As they were colonizing the continent, they survived the [[Downfall of Númenor]].
 +
==History==
 +
The Númenóreans' power and knowledge had grown throughout the course of the [[Second Age]], and became increasingly preoccupied with the limits placed on their happiness—and eventually their power—by mortality, the purpose of which they began to question. They started fearing the [[Gift of Men]] and attepted to delay it or recall life.
  
As their power and knowledge had grown throughout the course of the Second Age, the Númenóreans had become increasingly preoccupied with the limits placed on their happiness—and eventually their power—by mortality, the purpose of which they began to question;
+
This growing wish to escape death, made most of the Númenoreans envious of the immortal [[Eldar]], who they had come to physically resemble. The Eldar sought ever to remind the men of Númenor however, that death was a gift of the One God, [[Ilúvatar]], to all men, and the will of Ilúvatar could not be gainsaid.
{{quote|But the fear of death grew ever darker upon them, and they delayed it by all means that they could; and they began to build great houses for their dead, while their wise men laboured unceasingly to discover if they might the secret of recalling life...|"[[Akallabêth]]", ''[[The Silmarillion]]''}}
+
  
This growing wish to escape death, known as "the doom of Men", made most of the Númenoreans envious of the immortal [[Eldar]], who they had come to physically resemble. The Eldar sought ever to remind the men of Númenor however, that death was a gift of the One God, [[Ilúvatar]], to all men, and the will of Ilúvatar could not be gainsaid.  
+
Nevertheless, after {{SA|2221}}, when [[Tar-Ancalimon]] became [[King of Númenor]], the Númenóreans became divided. The [[King's Men]] who turned away from the [[Valar]] and the Eldar, and eventually became vulnerable to the corruption of [[Sauron]], who dominated the minds and wills of most of the Númenóreans with the [[One Ring]].<ref>{{L|211}}</ref> The powerful and elderly King [[Ar-Pharazôn]], had become frightened of old age<ref>{{L|156}}</ref> was persuaded by Sauron that Ilúvatar was a lie invented by the Valar, and seduced him.  
  
Nevertheless, after Second Age 2221, when Tar-Ancalimon became King of Númenor:
+
Some indigenous people of Middle-earth were afraid of those Númenóreans, whom they called "[[Go-hilleg]]" in their language. The "Go-hilleg" terrified those people with their ships and intended at some point to conquer the land of [[Agar]] and slay its people.<ref>{{PM|Elmar}}</ref>
{{quote|...the people of Númenor became divided. On the one hand was the greater party, and they were called the [[King's Men]], and they grew proud and were estranged from the [[Valar]] and the Eldar.|"[[Akallabêth]]", ''[[The Silmarillion]]''}}
+
  
The King's Men ultimately became vulnerable to the corruption of [[Sauron]], who, having arrived in Númenór:
+
Three of the [[Nazgûl|Ringwraiths]] can be considered among the first and most powerful Númenóreans who were corrupted by Sauron,<ref>{{S|Akallabeth}}</ref> 1000 years before the Downfall: they served Sauron, being enslaved to his will, having become so because of their lust for power or knowledge.
{{quote|...naturally had the One Ring, and so very soon dominated the minds and wills of most of the Númenóreans.|''[[The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien]]'', No. 211}}
+
  
Eventually, in Númenor's last years, its powerful and elderly King [[Ar-Pharazôn]], who had become "frightened of old age" (Letters ~ No.156), was persuaded by Sauron that Ilúvatar was a lie invented by the Valar, and seduced him;
+
Even the colonists who had settled on the shores and seaward regions of the [[Westlands]], turned to evil, the [[Darkness]] and the black arts. These evil lords made their fortresses and dwellings in the [[South]], because of the power of [[Gil-galad]].<ref name=rings>{{S|Rings}}</ref> <ref name=window>{{TT|Window}}</ref>
{{quote|...back to the worship of the Dark, and of Melkor the Lord thereof, at first in secret, but ere long openly and in the face of his people.|"[[Akallabêth]]", ''[[The Silmarillion]]''}}
+
===After the Downfall===
 +
For many centuries after the Downfall, these descendants of the King's Men held onto the [[Haven of Umbar]], the most northerly and famous of their realms.
  
Within Númenor, the majority quickly followed suit, and this worship quickly passed across the ocean to most of Númenor's colonies in Middle-earth:
+
When the surviving [[Faithful]] Numenoreans founded [[Gondor]] and [[Arnor]], they saw their southern counterparts as renegades, calling them the Black Númenóreans.<ref>{{RK|Gate}}</ref> The Black Númenóreans held a similar hatred of Gondor after generations.<ref>{{App|Gondor}}</ref>
{{quote|The Men of Númenor were settled far and wide on the shores and seaward regions of the Great Lands, but for the most part they fell into evils and follies. Many became enamoured of the Darkness and the black arts...|"[[The Window on the West]]", ''[[The Lord of the Rings]]''}}
+
  
These "black arts" and "follies" were presumably the earliest culture traits of those who became known afterward as Black Númenóreans,
+
Two early Black Númenórean lords from the late [[Second Age]] were [[Herumor]] and [[Fuinur]] who desired power over men of other, lesser races, and they "rose to (great) power amongst the [[Haradrim]]", the peoples neighbouring Umbar. They likely shared Sauron's defeat at the hands of the [[Last Alliance of Elves and Men]].
{{quote|...for in the days of the sojourn of Sauron in that land the hearts of well nigh all its people had been turned towards darkness. Therefore many of those who sailed east in that time and made fortresses and dwellings upon the coasts were already bent to his will...|"[[Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age]]", ''[[The Silmarillion]]''}}
+
  
This worship of Melkor and the Dark marked the final, irrevocable division between its adherents and the "[[Faithful]]" Númenóreans, the ''[[Elendili]]'', who kept to their old faith in Ilúvatar, but these were a small minority;
+
The triumph of the Last Alliance marked the decline of the Black Númenórean race and the end of their racial superiority. They dwindled swiftly or became merged with the Middle Men.<ref>{{App|A}}</ref>
  
For many centuries after the Downfall, some descendants of the "[[King's Men]]" held onto what became the most northerly and famous of their realms-in-exile, the [[Haven of Umbar]], although
+
[[Berúthiel|Queen Berúthiel]], wife of Gondor's King [[Tarannon Falastur]] was "a black Númenórean".<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> This was a loveless union, and was presumably a political accommodation: that such arrangements were possible implies the existence at that time of more Gondor-friendly Black Númenóreans than the much later Mouth of Sauron.  
{{quote|...because of the power of [[Gil-galad]] these renegades, lords both mighty and evil, for the most part took up their abodes in the southlands far away.|"[[Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age]]", ''[[The Silmarillion]]''}}
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Most of those few Númenóreans who had never envied the Eldar, and had always remained true to their belief in Ilúvatar, also survived the destruction of their homeland, and they established their own realms-in-exile north of Umbar, where previously had come
+
{{quote|...only the Faithful of Númenor, and many therefore of the folk of the coastlands in that region were in whole or in part akin to the Elf-friends and the people of [[Elendil]]...|"[[Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age]]", ''[[The Silmarillion]]''}}
+
 
+
After founding [[Gondor]] and [[Arnor]] these self-styled "Faithful" Númenóreans saw their southern counterparts as renegades, calling them:
+
{{quote|...the Black Númenóreans; for they established their dwellings in Middle-earth during the years of Sauron's domination, and they worshipped him, being enamoured of evil knowledge.|"[[The Black Gate Opens]]", ''[[The Lord of the Rings]]''}}
+
 
+
The Black Númenóreans held a similiarly low opinion of 'The Faithful' and their descendants, as
+
{{quote|..they inherited without lessening their hatred of Gondor.|"Appendix A" of ''[[The Lord of the Rings]]''}}
+
 
+
Two early Black Númenórean lords are named from the time of the late  [[Second Age]]: [[Herumor]] and [[Fuinur]].  Like all Black Númenóreans and 'King's Men' before them, Herumor and Fuinur desired power over men of other, lesser races, and they "rose to (great) power amongst the [[Haradrim]]", the peoples neighbouring Umbar. Their fate is unknown, but they likely shared Sauron's defeat at the hands of the [[Last Alliance of Elves and Men]].
+
 
+
The Black Númenórean style of governing was no doubt tyrannical, but may also have involved a tradition of duumviracy, at least in Umbar, whose lords are usually paired when mentioned; Herumor/Fuinur for example, were probably rulers of Umbar, as much later Angamaite/Sangahyando were. Whatever political system was in place, however, the Black Númenóreans did not govern effectively;
+
{{quote|...some were given over wholly to idleness and ease, and some fought amongst themselves, until they became conquered in their weakness by the wild men.|"[[The Window on the West]]", ''[[The Lord of the Rings]]''}}
+
 
+
The triumph of the Last Alliance marked the decline of the Black Númenórean race and the end of their racial superiority;
+
{{quote|After the fall of Sauron their race swiftly dwindled or became merged with the Men of Middle-earth...|"Appendix A" of ''[[The Lord of the Rings]]''}}
+
 
   
 
   
Nevertheless, a Black Númenórean elite survived at least in Umbar for over a thousand years after Númenor's fall, maintaining much influence in [[Haradwaith]]. As late as Third Age 1015, for example, even after being exiled from their homeland for nearly a century
+
A Black Númenórean elite survived at least in Umbar for over a thousand years after Númenor's fall, maintaining much influence in [[Haradwaith]]. As late as Third Age 1015, for example, even after being exiled from their homeland for nearly a century, the lords that had been driven from Umbar led the [[Haradrim]] to retake Umbar.<ref>{{App|A}}</ref>
{{quote|...the Men of Harad, led by the lords that had been driven from Umbar, came up with great power against that stronghold...|"Appendix A" of ''[[The Lord of the Rings]]''}}
+
 
+
The Black Númenóreans did not use [[Westron]], but probably retained their old tongue [[Adûnaic]], speaking a dialect of it. (In [[The Notion Club Papers]], part of ''[[Sauron Defeated]]'', Arundel Lowdham cited two descendants of classical Adûnaic. One of these must have been Westron, the other the tongue of the Black Númenóreans).
+
  
The Black Númenóreans are absent from recorded history after their defeat by [[Ciryaher]] in 1050, but a population of sorts must have survived somewhere at least until the end of the [[Third Age]], as [[The Mouth of Sauron]], who mocked the army of [[Aragorn|King Elessar]] in front of the [[Morannon]] was described both as a Black Númenórean and "Renegade", which is presumably the term used by the Free Peoples of that time to describe all folk of similiar ancestry.  
+
Not much is known about the Black Númenóreans after their defeat by [[Ciryaher]] in {{TA|1050}}. A "Renegade", [[The Mouth of Sauron]], had entered the service of Sauron in [[Mordor]]. He mocked the army of [[Aragorn|King Elessar]] in front of the [[Morannon]].
  
In an interview Tolkien described [[Berúthiel|Queen Berúthiel]], wife of Gondor's King [[Tarannon Falastur]], as "a black Númenórean". This was a loveless union, and was presumably a political accommodation: that such arrangements were possible implies the existence at that time of more Gondor-friendly Black Númenóreans than the much later Mouth of Sauron.  
+
==Culture==
 +
The Black Númenórean style of governing was no doubt tyrannical, and may also have involved a tradition of duumviracy, at least in Umbar. After Herumor and Fuinur there were also [[Angamaite]] and [[Sangahyando]]. Some lords were idle and lazy, they used to fight amongst themselves, until they became conquered by the wild men.<ref name=window/>
  
Three of the [[Nazgûl|Ringwraiths]] can be considered among the first and most powerful Black Númenóreans, even though their origin predates Númenor's fall by about 1,000 years: they served Sauron, being enslaved to his will, having become so because of their lust for power or knowledge.
+
The Black Númenóreans did not use [[Westron]], but probably retained their old tongue [[Adûnaic]], speaking a dialect of it. (In [[The Notion Club Papers]], part of ''[[Sauron Defeated]]'', Arundel Lowdham cited two descendants of classical Adûnaic. One of these must have been Westron, the other the tongue of the Black Númenóreans).
  
 
==Portrayal in Adaptations==
 
==Portrayal in Adaptations==

Latest revision as of 20:41, 22 June 2014

Brian Durfee - Black Númenóreans.jpg
Black Númenóreans
Race
DominionsUmbar, other southern lands
LanguagesAdûnaic
DistinctionsSurvivors of the Downfall of Númenor, loyal to Sauron
MembersHerumor, Fuinur, Berúthiel, The Mouth of Sauron

The Black Númenóreans were High Men from Númenor. They were under the Shadow like the King's Men, cruel oppressors and overlords over the more primitive Middle Men of Middle-earth. As they were colonizing the continent, they survived the Downfall of Númenor.

Contents

[edit] History

The Númenóreans' power and knowledge had grown throughout the course of the Second Age, and became increasingly preoccupied with the limits placed on their happiness—and eventually their power—by mortality, the purpose of which they began to question. They started fearing the Gift of Men and attepted to delay it or recall life.

This growing wish to escape death, made most of the Númenoreans envious of the immortal Eldar, who they had come to physically resemble. The Eldar sought ever to remind the men of Númenor however, that death was a gift of the One God, Ilúvatar, to all men, and the will of Ilúvatar could not be gainsaid.

Nevertheless, after S.A. 2221, when Tar-Ancalimon became King of Númenor, the Númenóreans became divided. The King's Men who turned away from the Valar and the Eldar, and eventually became vulnerable to the corruption of Sauron, who dominated the minds and wills of most of the Númenóreans with the One Ring.[1] The powerful and elderly King Ar-Pharazôn, had become frightened of old age[2] was persuaded by Sauron that Ilúvatar was a lie invented by the Valar, and seduced him.

Some indigenous people of Middle-earth were afraid of those Númenóreans, whom they called "Go-hilleg" in their language. The "Go-hilleg" terrified those people with their ships and intended at some point to conquer the land of Agar and slay its people.[3]

Three of the Ringwraiths can be considered among the first and most powerful Númenóreans who were corrupted by Sauron,[4] 1000 years before the Downfall: they served Sauron, being enslaved to his will, having become so because of their lust for power or knowledge.

Even the colonists who had settled on the shores and seaward regions of the Westlands, turned to evil, the Darkness and the black arts. These evil lords made their fortresses and dwellings in the South, because of the power of Gil-galad.[5] [6]

[edit] After the Downfall

For many centuries after the Downfall, these descendants of the King's Men held onto the Haven of Umbar, the most northerly and famous of their realms.

When the surviving Faithful Numenoreans founded Gondor and Arnor, they saw their southern counterparts as renegades, calling them the Black Númenóreans.[7] The Black Númenóreans held a similar hatred of Gondor after generations.[8]

Two early Black Númenórean lords from the late Second Age were Herumor and Fuinur who desired power over men of other, lesser races, and they "rose to (great) power amongst the Haradrim", the peoples neighbouring Umbar. They likely shared Sauron's defeat at the hands of the Last Alliance of Elves and Men.

The triumph of the Last Alliance marked the decline of the Black Númenórean race and the end of their racial superiority. They dwindled swiftly or became merged with the Middle Men.[9]

Queen Berúthiel, wife of Gondor's King Tarannon Falastur was "a black Númenórean".[10][11] This was a loveless union, and was presumably a political accommodation: that such arrangements were possible implies the existence at that time of more Gondor-friendly Black Númenóreans than the much later Mouth of Sauron.

A Black Númenórean elite survived at least in Umbar for over a thousand years after Númenor's fall, maintaining much influence in Haradwaith. As late as Third Age 1015, for example, even after being exiled from their homeland for nearly a century, the lords that had been driven from Umbar led the Haradrim to retake Umbar.[12]

Not much is known about the Black Númenóreans after their defeat by Ciryaher in T.A. 1050. A "Renegade", The Mouth of Sauron, had entered the service of Sauron in Mordor. He mocked the army of King Elessar in front of the Morannon.

[edit] Culture

The Black Númenórean style of governing was no doubt tyrannical, and may also have involved a tradition of duumviracy, at least in Umbar. After Herumor and Fuinur there were also Angamaite and Sangahyando. Some lords were idle and lazy, they used to fight amongst themselves, until they became conquered by the wild men.[6]

The Black Númenóreans did not use Westron, but probably retained their old tongue Adûnaic, speaking a dialect of it. (In The Notion Club Papers, part of Sauron Defeated, Arundel Lowdham cited two descendants of classical Adûnaic. One of these must have been Westron, the other the tongue of the Black Númenóreans).

[edit] Portrayal in Adaptations

A typical Black Númenórean within the city of Annuminas (The Lord of the Rings Online).

2007: The Lord of the Rings Online:

The Black Númenóreans are portrayed in service of the different Lieutenants of the Enemy. The Angmarim inhabit the lands surrounding Carn Dum in Angmar and serve Mordirith and later Amarthiel. Much later, Umbarrim Númenóreans make appearance in Dol Guldur of Mirkwood.

2011: The Lord of the Rings: War in the North:

Agandaûr, the game's main antagonist, is a Black Númenórean.[13]

[edit] References

  1. J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 211, (dated 14 October 1958)
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 156, (dated 4 November 1954)
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Peoples of Middle-earth, "Tal-Elmar"
  4. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Akallabêth: The Downfall of Númenor"
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age"
  6. 6.0 6.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Two Towers, "The Window on the West"
  7. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Black Gate Opens"
  8. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, "The Númenorean Kings", "Gondor and the Heirs of Anárion"
  9. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A
  10. Daphne Castell, "The Realms of Tolkien" , Festival in the Shire Journal, Issue 1 (accessed 7 May 2012)
  11. Humphrey Carpenter, The Inklings, "Thursday evenings", pp. 137-8
  12. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A
  13. "Enemies" , www.warinthenorth.com (accessed 15 February 2012)