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Bay (and the adjacent shore)
Ted Nasmith - At Lake Cuiviénen.jpg
General Information
LocationFar East of Middle-earth
TypeBay (and the adjacent shore)
DescriptionBay and shore
InhabitantsQuendi, Avari
GalleryImages of Cuiviénen

Cuiviénen (Q, pron. N [ˌkuɪviˈeːnen], V [ˌkuɪβiˈeːnen]) was a bay on the shore of the inland Sea of Helcar in the far east of Middle-earth and by extension, the land where the Quendi or Elves awoke.[1]


Eru first awoke the Elves there in approximately 1050 of the Years of the Trees. From the first they were divided into three groups: the Minyar, Tatyar, and Nelyar. They dwelt in Cuiviénen for more than five hundred years of the sun before the first sundering. Many of the Elves, particularly of the Minyar and Tatyar, journeyed west to Valinor and, if they did not tarry in Middle-earth, saw its light and became known as the Eldar. Those who remained were called the Avari, the unwilling, for they did not desire to see the beauty of that land, but preferred the starlight of Cuiviénen.

It is unknown how long the Avari remained at Cuiviénen during the First Age, but it is certain that the Sea of Helcar ceased to exist after the War of Wrath. The fate of its inhabitants is unknown.


The Quenya name Cuiviénen (cuivië "awakening" + nen "water") means "water of awakening".[source?]


  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of the Coming of the Elves and the Captivity of Melkor"