Tolkien Gateway

Grey Company

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The Grey Company by Jef Murray

The Grey Company was a company of thirty Northern Dúnedain commanded by Aragorn's kinsman Halbarad.

History

The company, aided by Elladan and Elrohir, they rode south to fight beside their Chieftain Aragorn in the War of the Ring. The Dúnedain are clad almost entirely in gray. They have received a mysterious message requesting that they come to Aragorn's aid.

They found him near the Fords of Isen where they were welcomed by Théoden, and Elrohir conveyed a message to Aragorn from Rivendell: "If thou art in haste, remember the Paths of the Dead." After a time, the group reached Helm's Deep.

As Théoden prepared the group to resume the journey, Aragorn realized that they would not arrive at Minas Tirith in time. He has decided to take the Dúnedain with him to Minas Tirith via the Paths of the Dead as the proper heir of Elendil. Meanwhile, the Rohirrim take a slower, safer path east through the mountains to Edoras.

The Rangers rode through the plains of Rohan and reached Dunharrow by morning. Théoden has not yet arrived, but Éowyn in vain begged Aragorn to avoid the Paths of the Dead.

Spurred only by the strength of Aragorn’s will, the Company with Legolas and Gimli entered the dark path. At a clearing, Aragorn summoned them to follow him to the Stone of Erech.

After creeping in the darkness for what seems like ages, the Company emerged from the Paths and rode quickly through the mountain fields with the Dead behind. The inhabitants of the surrounding countryside flee in fear, calling Aragorn the "King of the Dead". Arriving at the large, black Stone of Erech, the legion of the Oathbreakers announce their allegiance to Aragorn. Aragorn unfurls a black flag and pronounces himself the heir of Isildur’s kingdom. The Company rides on to Anduin.[1]

On 9 March T.A. 3019[2] they led the Oathbreakers across the Ciril on the way to Pelargir.[1] On their way back they freed Ethir Anduin from Umbarian occupation.[3] freeing Gondor's southern armies to follow them north to relieve Minas Tirith.

They arrived on to the Battle of the Pelennor Fields, where Halbarad fell.[4]

Portrayal in Adaptations

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

In the opening narration, Gandalf mentions Aragorn travels with a small band of kinsmen.

2010-: The Lord of the Rings Online:

The Grey Company forms during Volume III: Allies of the King. There are more than thirty Rangers in the company, but by the time they meet with Aragorn their numbers are reduced to thirty. Members of the Grey Company include many of the important rangers met over the epic storyline in the game, including Calenglad, Candaith, Corunir, Daervunn, Dagoras, Golodir, Halbarad, Halros, Lothrandir, Mincham and Saeradan.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Passing of the Grey Company"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B, "The Great Years"
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Last Debate"
  4. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Battle of the Pelennor Fields"