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Elrond

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Elrond
Half-elf
Biographical Information
Other namesElrond Peredhel (S, "Half-elven")
Master Elrond
TitlesLord of Imladris
PositionRing-bearer of Vilya
Vice-regent and herald to Gil-galad[1]
AffiliationWhite Council
LanguageSindarin[2]
BirthF.A. 532
Havens of Sirion
Family
HouseHouse of Eärendil
HeritageHalf-elven father and mother
ParentageEärendil, father
Elwing, mother
SiblingsElros
SpouseCelebrían
ChildrenElladan
Elrohir
Arwen
Physical Description
GenderMale
Hair colorDark[3]
Eye colorGrey[3]
ClothingGrey mantle[4]
Silver circlet[3]
"He was as noble and fair as an elf-lord, as strong as a warrior, as wise as a wizards, as venerable as a king of dwarves, and as kind as summer."
J.R.R. Tolkien[5]

Elrond (b. F.A. 532) was the Lord of Rivendell and keeper of the great elven ring Vilya.

Contents

Appearance

Elrond is described to seem ageless, resembling neither old nor young, however one could see in his face the memories and experiences of thousands of years. He looked venerable both like an old king, a wise wizard, and an experienced warrior in his prime.

As common with other Elves, he was dark-haired, while his eyes were grey shining like starlight. He could be seen wearing a circlet of silver.[6][7]

History

First Age

Elrond was born at the Havens of Sirion late in the First Age. His parents were Eärendil and Elwing. He was thus Half-elven: Eärendil was the child of the mortal Tuor and the elf Idril, while Elwing was the grandchild of Beren (a Man) and Lúthien (daughter of the Elf-king Thingol and the Maia Melian). Consequently, Elrond was descended from all three tribes of the Elves (Vanyar and Noldor through Idril, Sindar through Luthien), a Maia, and all three houses of the Edain (Hador, Haleth and Bëor). Elrond had a twin brother, Elros, who later became the first king of Númenor.

When the Sons of Fëanor attacked the Havens of Sirion, Elrond and his brother were taken captive by Maglor, and were subsequently raised by him. Following the War of Wrath, because of his Half-elven heritage the Valar gave Elrond and his brother a choice whether to be counted among the kindred of Elves or of Men. Elrond chose to belong to the Firstborn, while Elros chose to become mortal. Elrond subsequently remained in Lindon with Gil-galad, where he became known as a healer and loremaster.

Second Age

When Sauron (disguised in his fair form as Annatar) came seeking entrance to Lindon during the Second Age, Elrond and Gil-galad sensed that he was not what he seemed, and denied him. Later, in S.A. 1697 during the wars of the Elves against Sauron, Elrond founded the refuge of Imladris, also known as Rivendell.

Elrond marched with Gil-galad and Elendil during the War of the Last Alliance, serving as Gil-galad’s herald. He was present during the last battle of that war, witnessing the deaths of Gil-galad and Elendil. At the conclusion of that battle, when Isildur cut the One Ring from Sauron’s hand he and Círdan advised Isildur to destroy the Ring, but Isildur refused their counsel. Elrond subsequently returned to Rivendell, which prospered the coming years with the aid of the Ring of Air, Vilya, that Elrond had received from Gil-galad. It has been argued that following Gil-galad’s death, Elrond had the right to become High King of the Noldor, but he never claimed the title. Indeed, after the Second Age ended, there were very few Noldor left in Middle-earth for there to be a king over them.

Third Age

Following Isildur's death, Elrond received the shards of Narsil, which he preserved for many years. He began his long tradition of fostering the heirs of Isildur by helping to raise Isildur's son Valandil, who had been left in Rivendell during the War of the Last Alliance. Centuries later, when the Northern Kingdom fell, Elrond took the other heirlooms of Arnor (the Sceptre of Annúminas and the Ring of Barahir) into his keeping, holding them for the one who would eventually be able to reclaim the throne of Arnor.

In T.A. 109, Elrond married Celebrían, the daughter of Galadriel and Celeborn. Their first children, the twins Elladan and Elrohir, were born in 130, and their daughter Arwen in 241. He would be separated by his wife when taken by Orcs; their sons rescued her but Elrond was unable to heal her. She had to leave for the West in 2510.

In T.A. 2933, Elrond took Aragorn as his foster-son in Rivendell, naming him Estel ("Hope") and concealing his heritage from him until he came of age. When Aragorn became an adult, Elrond gave him the Ring of Barahir and the shards of Narsil, foreseeing that Aragorn might be the one to claim the thrones of Gondor and Arnor. When Aragorn fell in love with Arwen, Elrond revealed to him that Arwen shared the choice of the Half-elven, and that one or the other of them would ultimately be parted from her forever. Elrond insisted that Arwen could not marry Aragorn until he became king of both Gondor and Arnor.

During the Quest of Erebor Elrond welcomed Thorin and Company into his home, the Last Homely House before the wild, in Rivendell. On midsummer eve - the night before the Dwarves, Bilbo, and Gandalf continued on their journey eastward - Elrond examined the the swords which they had found in the trolls' cave. He read the runes and revealed that Thorin's sword was called Orcrist, the "Goblin-cleaver", and that Gandalf sword was named Glamdring, the "Foe-hammer". He told them that they were Elven swords from the ancient city of Gondolin, long ago destroyed. He then looked at Thrór's Map and found that there were moon-letters. From the moon of that midsummer eve he could read the words, 'five feet high the door and three may walk abreast'; and 'stand by the grey stone when the thrush knocks and the setting sun with the last light of Durin's Day will shine upon the keyhole'. This information proved vital for Bilbo and the Dwarves to enter the Lonely Mountain through its secret entrance.[5]

During that same year, T.A. 2941, the White Council assailed Dol Guldur and rid Mirkwood of the Necromancer's presence. Elrond, like Gandalf, was a member of the White Council and must have been involved in the prior discussions and planning for this attack.[8] Upon Bilbo and Gandalf's return to Rivendell, Elrond and the grey wizard discussed this and the events of the Lonely Mountain. They both agreed that it would be better if the Necromancer were banished from the world altogether.[9]

The War of the Ring

When Frodo first left the Shire with the One Ring, it was always his intention to go to Rivendell to seek the advice of Elrond. Indeed, in his letter left at Bree, Gandalf counselled him to do so. Elrond healed Frodo of his wound sustained at Weathertop. Elrond then hosted the feast that was held when Frodo recovered.

Elrond presided at the Council of Elrond. During that meeting, he narrated what he knew of the history of Isildur and the Ring. He identified Aragorn as the Heir of Isildur, and when Frodo ultimately volunteered to carry the Ring, Elrond affirmed that decision as correct. Elrond also appeared to have selected the members of the Fellowship other than Frodo and Sam, accepting Merry and Pippin only reluctantly.

Later, Elrond sent his sons Elladan and Elrohir to join the Dúnedain Rangers who rode to Rohan to join Aragorn. Through Elrohir, Elrond advised Aragorn to take the Paths of the Dead. During the Last Debate, Elrohir supported Aragorn’s decision to attack Mordor as a diversion to allow Frodo time to reach Mount Doom, saying that this was Elrond’s advice. Following the War of the Ring, Elrond escorted Arwen to Minas Tirith for her marriage to Aragorn, and parted from her in great sorrow.

Elrond was one of the Elves who took the White Ship to Valinor along with Frodo and the other Ringbearers. The Third Age's end is marked by Elrond’s departure.

Inspiration

Elrond was created for The Hobbit. Subsequently he became the only character to appear in all three of The Silmarillion, The Hobbit, and The Lord of the Rings.

In the chapter A Short Rest of The Hobbit, it is said of Elrond that he “was an elf-friend — one of those people whose fathers came into the strange stories before the beginning of History, the wars of the evil goblins and the elves and the first men in the North. In those days of our tale there were still some people who had both elves and heroes of the North for ancestors, and Elrond the master of the house was their chief. He was as noble and as fair in face as an elf-lord, as strong as a warrior, as wise as a wizard, as venerable as a king of dwarves, and as kind as summer.” Note that in this description he is not identified as an elf himself, as Tolkien had not at this stage decided that Elrond of Rivendell was the same person as Elrond the son of Eärendil.

Etymology

The name Elrond (S, pron. [ˈelrond]) has been translated as "Star-dome",[10] and "Vault of Heaven"[11] recalling the glory of Menegroth though at an earlier stage, it was supposed to mean "Elf of the Cave". His Quenya name was most likely Elerondo[12], isolated from the patronymic Elerondiel, "daughter of Elrond".[13]

Genealogy

Celeborn
 
Galadriel
 
Eärendil
 
Elwing
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Celebrían
 
ELROND
 
 
 
Elros
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Elrohir
 
Elladan
 
Arwen
 
Aragorn II
 


Portrayal in adaptations

Elrond in Adaptations
Elrond as portrayed in The Hobbit (1977 film)  
Elrond as portrayed in The Lord of the Rings (1978 film)  

Films

1977: The Hobbit (1977 film):

Elrond appears in Rivendell, crowned with a ring of stars. He feeds the Dwarves, and identifies Orcrist and Glamdring. He needs little time to identify the latter.He is shown with a beard, although Tolkien clearly states elves do not have beards. His voice was provided by Cyril Ritchard.

1978: The Lord of the Rings (1978 film):

Elrond, voiced by André Morell, appears at the Council of Elrond. He sits on a raised chair, and narrates the scene. Not until the Ring is brought forward does he take an active part.

1980: The Return of the King (1980 film):

Elrond appears roughly the same as in the first of Rankin/Bass' films. The premise of the film, a minstrel of Gondor who tells the tale of "Frodo of the Nine Fingers, and the Ring of Doom" at the birthday of Bilbo, allows Elrond to be a member of the audience. Because Ritchard had passed away, Rankin/Bass regular Paul Frees took over.

2001: The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring:

Elrond, played by Hugo Weaving, first appears in the prologue as a commander of the army of Gil-galad in the War of the Last Alliance. A later flashback scene shows him actually taking Isildur into Mount Doom, trying to persuade him to destroy the Ring. Círdan is omitted.
As in the book, Elrond heals Frodo's wound from Weathertop. Elrond then has a conversation with Gandalf, discussing the many challenges that face them. Elrond argues that the Ring cannot remain in Rivendell (in the film, Frodo appears to have thought that he would be able to leave the Ring there). He also expresses his doubts about the race of Men, and gives the first hints about Aragorn's real identity. In the Council of Elrond, Elrond himself is the one who argues that the only option is to destroy the Ring. He does not select the Fellowship, but accepts those who volunteer.
Elrond gains two additional scenes in the Extended Edition of the movie. In the first, he talks with Aragorn beside the grave of Aragorn’s mother. Elrond encourages the reluctant Aragorn to accept his fate of becoming king. In the next scene, Elrond blesses the departing Fellowship.

2002: The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers:

Though he had no scenes in the book, Elrond appears mainly in conversations with Arwen, whose role is also greatly expanded. In a flashback, Aragorn remembers Elrond telling him to abandon his love for Arwen, allowing her to sail to Valinor. Aragorn attempts to do this, but Arwen denies him. In another scene, Elrond persuades Arwen that she should sail to Valinor, describing what will happen if she remains and Aragorn dies. Elrond then has a telepathic communication with Galadriel discussing the war that is about to start. He apparently suggests that she send an army to Helm's Deep to aid the Men there, since when Haldir arrives at Helm's Deep he says that he brings "word from Elrond of Rivendell".

2003: The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King:

In the final installemnt of Jackson's film series, Elrond's first scene is with Arwen, who has decided not to sail after all, but to return. Although he senses that she is dying, Elrond acknowledges her choice. At her suggestion, he has the shards of Narsil re-forged, then carries the new sword to Aragorn at Dunharrow. He finally convinces Aragorn to accept his destiny, and advises him to take the Paths of the Dead. Later, Elrond escorts Arwen to Minas Tirith for her wedding, and he finally sails to Valinor with the Ringbearers.

2012-3: The Hobbit films:

Hugo Weaving will reprise his role as Elrond.[14]

Radio series

1955: BBC Radio's The Lord of the Rings:

The part of Elrond is voiced by Garard Green.[15]

1968: BBC Radio's The Hobbit:

In this adaptation, Elrond is voiced by John Pullen.

1981: BBC Radio's The Lord of the Rings:

Hugh Dickson provided the voice of Elrond in this radio series. He appears only in the episode containing the Council of Elrond, and appears unintroduced. Dickson showcases great trouble with pronouncing Elvish, and especially diphtongs. Gimli is the son of "Gloo-in", who fought the dragon "Sma-oog". Legolas is the son of "Thrandoo-uhl".

Games

2002: Vivendi's The Fellowship of the Ring:

Like his predecessor Hugh Dickson, Jim Piddock shows incredible difficulty with diphtongs. "Glau-win" and "Thrandool" dislike eachother, so too their sons.

2003: Sierra's The Hobbit:

In a short cutscene between the levels "Roast Mutton" and "Over Hill and Under Hill", Elrond is briefly mentioned. An artful image on a manuscript can be seen, while the narrator explains Elrond examined the map and the swords.

2006: EA's The Battle for Middle-earth II:

In an alternative, northern War of the Ring, Rivendell is the main base of operations for Glóin and Glorfindel. As such, Elrond is the source of missions and advice, and serves as the narrator throughout the game (Hugo Weaving reprises the role). Elrond is a playable character during the assault on Dol Guldur.

2007: The Lord of the Rings Online:

Elrond is a non-playable character and came be found in the library of the Last Homely House in Rivendell. During the Elven Prologue set hundreds of years before the War of the Ring he participates in a battle in the refuge of Edhellion, in northern Ered Luin. Elrond is heavily involved in the game original storyline and the characters are frequently bidden to return to him after uncovering troubling sings of the Enemy of achieving notable victories.

2009: The Lord of the Rings: Conquest:

Hugo Weaving once again reprises the role, serving as the narrator for both Good and Evil campaigns.

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

Early in the game Elrond sends his sons, Elladan and Elrohir, to scout Fornost.[16] He later interacts with main characters in Rivendell, guiding them on their path of defeating Argandaur.

See also

References

  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix F, "The Languages and Peoples of the Third Age", "Of the Elves"
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, "Many Meetings"
  4. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Grey Havens"
  5. 5.0 5.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, "A Short Rest"
  6. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, "Many Meetings"
  7. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, "A Short Rest"
  8. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B, "The Third Age"
  9. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, "The Last Stage"
  10. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Peoples of Middle-earth, "The Shibboleth of Fëanor"
  11. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lost Road and Other Writings, "The Etymologies", page 384
  12. Petri Tikka, "Quenya words in Parma Eldalambaron 17"
  13. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Gilson (ed.), "Words, Phrases and Passages in The Lord of the Rings", published in Parma Eldalamberon 17 (June 2007), page 56
  14. Ian McKellen, "2 Elves and another Wizard" dated 10 May 2011, Ian McKellen's website (accessed 23 December 2011)
  15. Radio Times, Volume 129, No. 1674, December 9, 1955
  16. The Lord of the Rings: War in the North, Chapter 1: Fornost, Inner Wards