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|Distinctions||Most revered of the Elven kindreds, loved by Manwë.|
|Members||Imin, Iminyë, Ingwë, Indis, Elemmírë, Amarië, and others.|
The Vanyar are the highest of the High Elves. According to legend, the clan was founded by Imin, the first Elf to awake in Cuiviénen, his wife Iminyë, and their twelve companions. At this time, they were called the Minyar (Q: "first ones", pron. [ˈmiɲar]). However it was Ingwë, the first Vanya to travel with Oromë to Valinor, who became their king. They were the fist to reach Beleriand after the Great Journey.
Ingwë is called High King of the Elves. He lives on Mount Taniquetil beneath the halls of Manwë. All of the Vanyar journeyed to Valinor before the beginning of the First Age, and remained there. They are said to have the greatest skill in poetry of all the Elves, and Manwë loves them for it.
The Vanyar called themselves Minyar, "the Firsts", their ancient name. Another name was Ingar or Ingwer which means "Chieftains" (etymologically related to the name Ingwë).
The name Vanyar means "the Fair" in Quenya, referring to their golden hair. It seems to be from a primitive Elvish form bányâ (stem BAN) but also from wanjâ (stem WAN). The Teleri called them Baniai.
Other Versions of the Legendarium
In the earliest versions of Tolkien's legendarium (see: The Book of Lost Tales Part 1), they were called Teleri, while the Elves known as Teleri in the published version of The Silmarillion were called Solosimpi.
In the late manuscript The Shibboleth of Fëanor (ca. 1968), the Vanyar are also called Ingwi. Christopher Tolkien notes that this might be the only use of the term since the Lhammas (1930s), when Ingwi was a name for an early conception of the Lindar (that is, being the first clan of Elves, the house and people of Ingwë).
(Quendi · People of the Stars · Firstborn · Elder Kindred)
(Eldar · Eldalië · Edhil)
|Vanyar (Fair-elves · Minyar) · Noldor (Deep-elves · Tatyar) · Teleri (Lindar · Nelyar)|
(High-elves · Amanyar)
|Vanyar · Noldor · Falmari|
|Úmanyar:||Sindar (Grey-elves · Eglath) · Nandor (Green-elves · Silvan Elves)|
|Moriquendi:||Úmanyar · Avari (Dark Elves · The Unwilling)|
|See Also:||Awakening of the Elves · Sundering of the Elves · Great Journey|