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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 in the night between the 5th and the 6th of March, at Dol Baran. Halbarad gave his kinsman a standard, which was a gift from Arwen

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 seemed like ages, the Company emerged from the Paths and rode quickly through the mountain fields with the Dead behind and followed the river Morthond briefly to Erech on their way to southern Gondor.

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 over Tarlang's Neck, across the Ciril and Ethring on the way to Pelargir.[1]

While in Lamedon, the Dead drove forth the assailants from Linhir, but the staunch defenders fled as well except for Angbor. Aragorn bade him gather his folk and follow them. The Corsairs of Umbar were sent back to Pelargir

On their way back they freed Ethir Anduin from Umbarian occupation. freeing Gondor's southern armies to follow them north to relieve Minas Tirith. Pelargir was overrun by Corsairs once again with 50 great ships and many more smaller vessels ready to sail to Harlond. The Company with the Dead drove the Corsairs away. After manning the Black Ships, Aragorn released the curse of the Dead.[3] Halbarad captained a Corsair ship and they sailed toward Harlond.

They arrived on to the Battle of the Pelennor Fields on March 15, where Halbarad fell.[4]

Many of the men of Lamedon, Lebennin and other southern fiefs, came on the Corsairs to Minas Tirith, where they bore themselves bravely in battle. Angbor, leading four thousand, went by land, coming to garrison Minas Tirith after the hosts departed for the Black Gate and the ensuing Battle of the Morannon.

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"