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<center>{{quote|So great was the might and splendour of the Númenóreans that Sauron's own servants deserted him.|''[[The Lord of the Rings]]'', [[Appendix A]]}}</center>
 
<center>{{quote|So great was the might and splendour of the Númenóreans that Sauron's own servants deserted him.|''[[The Lord of the Rings]]'', [[Appendix A]]}}</center>
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In {{SA|820}} Vinyalondë was overthrown by great seas and plundered by hostile men. Men near the coasts were growing afraid of the Númenóreans or were openly hostile and Aldarion heard rumours of some lord in Middle-earth who hated them. As Gil-galad warned [[Tar-Meneldur]] that this instigator was a servant of the [[Sauron|Enemy]].<ref name=Aldarion></ref>{{rp|199-200}}
 
In {{SA|820}} Vinyalondë was overthrown by great seas and plundered by hostile men. Men near the coasts were growing afraid of the Númenóreans or were openly hostile and Aldarion heard rumours of some lord in Middle-earth who hated them. As Gil-galad warned [[Tar-Meneldur]] that this instigator was a servant of the [[Sauron|Enemy]].<ref name=Aldarion></ref>{{rp|199-200}}
  
Aldarion's successors continued his works and even fought with the pre-Númenóreans until they attacked and ambushed the Númenóreans when they could.<ref name=Description></ref> They became their enemies giving no thought to husbandry or replanting. The Númenóreans wrecked the banks, the shorelines, great tracks and roads whom they drove into the forests northwards and southwards from the [[Gwathló]]<ref name="GC"/> and continued battling and destroying what lied ahead of them, pushing into [[Minhiriath]] and [[Enedwaith]], establishing themselves inland as far as the river [[Glanduin]] (the southern boundary of [[Eregion]]), beyond which pre-Númenóreans and hostile peoples lived, a remnant of the peoples that had dwelt in the vales of the White Mountains in ages past<ref name=Appendices>{{App|Men}}</ref><ref name="GC"/> The natives overcame their fear of the Elves and fled from Minhiriath into the dark woods of the great [[Eryn Vorn|Cape of Eryn Vorn]] (south of the mouth of [[Baranduin]]). Those from Enedwaith took refuge in the eastern mountains ([[Dunland]]).<ref name="GC"/>
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Aldarion's successors continued his works and even fought with the pre-Númenóreans<ref>{{UT|Numenor}}</ref> until they attacked and ambushed the Númenóreans when they could. They became their enemies giving no thought to husbandry or replanting. The Númenóreans wrecked the banks, the shorelines, great tracks and roads whom they drove into the forests northwards and southwards from the [[Gwathló]]<ref name="GC"/> and continued battling and destroying what lied ahead of them, pushing into [[Minhiriath]] and [[Enedwaith]], establishing themselves inland as far as the river [[Glanduin]] (the southern boundary of [[Eregion]]), beyond which pre-Númenóreans and hostile peoples lived, a remnant of the peoples that had dwelt in the vales of the White Mountains in ages past<ref>{{App|Languages}}</ref><ref name="GC"/> The natives overcame their fear of the Elves and fled from Minhiriath into the dark woods of the great [[Eryn Vorn|Cape of Eryn Vorn]] (south of the mouth of [[Baranduin]]). Those from Enedwaith took refuge in the eastern mountains ([[Dunland]]).<ref name="GC"/>
  
 
[[Sauron]] recruited pre-Númenóreans and in the early second millennium he increased pressure on the West, left his stronghold in [[Rhûn]] and relocated in [[Mordor]], drawing closer to the Númenórean sphere of influence. Sauron welcomed by the natives and used the haters of Númenor as spies and guides for his raiders who caused havoc and burned their settlements. He had not enough force to assault the forts at the Haven or along the banks of the [[Gwathló]]. However his regular troops attempted to conquest Eriador, hunting and killing Middle Men and the Elves and by {{SA|1700}} had mastered all Eriador, up to the River [[Lhûn]] and besieged [[Rivendell]].<ref name="GC"/>
 
[[Sauron]] recruited pre-Númenóreans and in the early second millennium he increased pressure on the West, left his stronghold in [[Rhûn]] and relocated in [[Mordor]], drawing closer to the Númenórean sphere of influence. Sauron welcomed by the natives and used the haters of Númenor as spies and guides for his raiders who caused havoc and burned their settlements. He had not enough force to assault the forts at the Haven or along the banks of the [[Gwathló]]. However his regular troops attempted to conquest Eriador, hunting and killing Middle Men and the Elves and by {{SA|1700}} had mastered all Eriador, up to the River [[Lhûn]] and besieged [[Rivendell]].<ref name="GC"/>
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They explored the coasts of Middle-earth far southward establishing landing and trading posts that grew into cruel vice-kingdoms which left many rumours in the legends of Men, although the Eldar did not know about them<ref>{{PM|Akallabeth}}</ref> In the south they found a useful natural haven already called [[Umbar]] by the natives.
 
They explored the coasts of Middle-earth far southward establishing landing and trading posts that grew into cruel vice-kingdoms which left many rumours in the legends of Men, although the Eldar did not know about them<ref>{{PM|Akallabeth}}</ref> In the south they found a useful natural haven already called [[Umbar]] by the natives.
  
The Númenóreans founded [[Pelargir]] in {{SA|2350}} and discovered the pre-Númenóreans [[Oathbreakers|Men of the Mountains]] near [[Dunharrow]] who eventually repented when Sauron left from Mordor and the power of Gil-galad had grown great.<ref name="Rings">{{S|Rings}}</ref>
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The Númenóreans founded [[Pelargir]] in {{SA|2350}} and discovered the pre-Númenóreans [[Oathbreakers|Men of the Mountains]] near [[Dunharrow]]<ref>{{HM|RK}}</ref> who eventually repented when Sauron left from Mordor and the power of Gil-galad had grown great.<ref name="Rings">{{S|Rings}}</ref>
  
 
As the shadow spread over Númenor, [[Tar-Ciryatan]] sailed to Middle-earth, bringing numerous treasures back to Númenor. Later more lands were occupied, plundered or forced to pay heavy tribute in return for the lives of their inhabitants. Towards the end of the kingdom, when their religion had changed and human sacrifices were made towards [[Morgoth|Melkor]], many of the victims were people of Middle-earth taken as prisoners. Because of these acts they were looked upon in fear, called the "Death" itself and the Men of Middle-earth trembled at the sight of a mighty Númenórean ship on the waters of [[Belegaer]]. However, the Faithful shared not the behaviour of the King's Men and though they also built a port in Middle-earth, named Pelargir, it was not for the sake of plundering but meant to be a haven far from those of the opposing party.
 
As the shadow spread over Númenor, [[Tar-Ciryatan]] sailed to Middle-earth, bringing numerous treasures back to Númenor. Later more lands were occupied, plundered or forced to pay heavy tribute in return for the lives of their inhabitants. Towards the end of the kingdom, when their religion had changed and human sacrifices were made towards [[Morgoth|Melkor]], many of the victims were people of Middle-earth taken as prisoners. Because of these acts they were looked upon in fear, called the "Death" itself and the Men of Middle-earth trembled at the sight of a mighty Númenórean ship on the waters of [[Belegaer]]. However, the Faithful shared not the behaviour of the King's Men and though they also built a port in Middle-earth, named Pelargir, it was not for the sake of plundering but meant to be a haven far from those of the opposing party.
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===Sauron's Influence===
 
===Sauron's Influence===
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The only daughter of the king [[Tar-Palantir]], a friend of the Eldar who tried to restore the old ways, was [[Tar-Míriel]]. According to the [[Law of Succession in Númenor|New Law]], she had the right to inherit the throne, but her cousin Pharazôn forced her into marriage, and took the Sceptre for himself, becoming known as Ar-Pharazôn the Golden, the most proud and powerful of all the kings. He desired not only immortality as the ones before he had, but also the dominion over the entire world. For this, he gathered a great fleet and opposed the greatest opponent in the path of his task: Sauron.  
 
The only daughter of the king [[Tar-Palantir]], a friend of the Eldar who tried to restore the old ways, was [[Tar-Míriel]]. According to the [[Law of Succession in Númenor|New Law]], she had the right to inherit the throne, but her cousin Pharazôn forced her into marriage, and took the Sceptre for himself, becoming known as Ar-Pharazôn the Golden, the most proud and powerful of all the kings. He desired not only immortality as the ones before he had, but also the dominion over the entire world. For this, he gathered a great fleet and opposed the greatest opponent in the path of his task: Sauron.  
  
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The Númenóreans were extremely skilled in arts and craft, with the forging of weapons and armour; although they were a peaceful people, their weapons, armour, and horse-riding skills could not be contested anywhere else in [[Arda]], save for the [[Valar]]. But the Númenóreans were not warmongers, hence the chief art on the island became that of ship-building and sea-craft. The Númenóreans became great mariners, exploring the world in all directions save for the westward, where the [[Ban of the Valar]] was in force. They often travelled to the shores of Middle-earth, teaching the men there the art and craft, and introduced farming as to improve their everyday lives.
 
The Númenóreans were extremely skilled in arts and craft, with the forging of weapons and armour; although they were a peaceful people, their weapons, armour, and horse-riding skills could not be contested anywhere else in [[Arda]], save for the [[Valar]]. But the Númenóreans were not warmongers, hence the chief art on the island became that of ship-building and sea-craft. The Númenóreans became great mariners, exploring the world in all directions save for the westward, where the [[Ban of the Valar]] was in force. They often travelled to the shores of Middle-earth, teaching the men there the art and craft, and introduced farming as to improve their everyday lives.
  
The Númenóreans spoke [[Adunaic]], a [[Mannish]] language that descended from the Mannish languages spoken in [[Beleriand]]. However, their forefathers, the Edain, had learned [[Sindarin]] which was passed on to Númenor. As a language of lore, it changed only a little with the millennia. Educated Númenóreans also studied [[Quenya]], having a prestige above all other tongues.<ref name=Appendices></ref>
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The Númenóreans spoke [[Adunaic]], a [[Mannish]] language that descended from the Mannish languages spoken in [[Beleriand]]. However, their forefathers, the Edain, had learned [[Sindarin]] which was passed on to Númenor. As a language of lore, it changed only a little with the millennia. Educated Númenóreans also studied [[Quenya]], having a prestige above all other tongues.<ref>{{App|Men}}</ref>
  
 
Respected as a law was the [[Ban of the Valar]], which stated that Númenóreans should never sail West more than the limit of their sight when looking after their shores. As the fear of death filled more and more the hearts of the Númenóreans, they sailed further away from the island, until finally the last king, Ar-Pharazôn, broke the Ban in his attempt to reach [[Tol Eressëa]] out of the false belief that dwelling in that place granted immortality.   
 
Respected as a law was the [[Ban of the Valar]], which stated that Númenóreans should never sail West more than the limit of their sight when looking after their shores. As the fear of death filled more and more the hearts of the Númenóreans, they sailed further away from the island, until finally the last king, Ar-Pharazôn, broke the Ban in his attempt to reach [[Tol Eressëa]] out of the false belief that dwelling in that place granted immortality.   

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