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Vanyar

Vanyar
People
Jenny Dolfen - Fields of Gold.jpg
"Fields of Gold" by Jenny Dolfen
General Information
Other namesMinyar, Light-elves, Fair-elves
LocationsOiolossë; Valmar
LanguagesQuenya (Vanyarin dialect)
MembersImin, Iminyë, Ingwë, Indis, Elemmírë, Amarië, and others
Physical Description
LifespanImmortal
DistinctionsMost revered of the Elven kindreds, loved by Manwë
Average heightTall
Hair colorGolden
Skin colorPale
GalleryImages of Vanyar

The Vanyar (Q, pron. N [ˈvaɲar], V [ˈβaɲar]) are one of the three groups of High Elves, along with the Noldor, and some of the Teleri (more specifically, the Falmari). They comprise most of those who did not leave Aman.

Contents

History

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. Always eager to reach Valinor, none of the Vanyar refused to go and were on the vanguard of the Great March; they reached Beleriand first and sailed on the first voyage of Tol Eressëa with the Noldor.[1]

At first the Vanyar dwelt in Tirion with the Noldor, but they loved the light of the Two Trees of Valinor and settled in the plains and woods Valinor or the slopes of Taniquetil.[2] Their King Ingwë became the High King of the Elves and lived on Taniquetil beneath the halls of Manwë.[2]

After the release of Melkor, they were suspicious of him, being content within the Light of Valinor.[3] In the Darkening of Valinor they were next to the Valar and Maiar inside the Ring of Doom.[4]

A notable Vanya was Indis, the second wife of Finwë and mother of Fingolfin and Finarfin. It is from her Vanyarin blood that some Noldor, like Galadriel, gained their golden hair. Other than those Noldor, all Vanyar were content to remain in Valinor and few were ever seen in Middle-earth,[1] as they only returned with the Host of Valinor for the War of Wrath.[5]

Description

The Vanyar were the first and smallest clan of the Elves, being only fourteen in number in their beginning.[6] All among them had blond hair. They were the most beloved by Manwë and Varda[1][2] and the Elder King gave them his gift of poetry and song.[7]

In the War of Wrath they held white banners[5] and it is said they preferred spears instead of swords and bows.[8]

Names

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).

In Sindarin they were called Minil.

The Vanyar also known under the name "Fair-elves",[1] from the fair colour of their hair.[9] They were also known as the "Light-elves".[10]

In he earliest form of the legendarium, they are also called the "Spear-elves" for their love of spears, as opposed to the sword and shield of the Noldor and the bow and arrow of the Solosimpi.[8]

Etymology

The name Vanyar means "the Fair" in Quenya, referring to their golden hair. It seems to be from a primitive Elvish form bányâ[11][12] (stem BAN) but also from wanjâ (stem WAN)[13]. 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 One), the first clan were called Teleri and Lindar, names that later were given to the third clan instead (the Elves known as Teleri in the published version of The Silmarillion were called Solosimpi back then).

In the Lhammas (1930s), Ingwi was a name for an early conception of the Lindar; this name reappeared only once, years later, in the late manuscript The Shibboleth of Fëanor (ca. 1968), as Christopher Tolkien notes.[14]

Gallery

Elves
(Quendi · People of the Stars · Firstborn · Elder Kindred)
Three Kindreds:
(Eldar · Eldalië · Edhil)
 Vanyar (Fair-elves · Minyar) · Noldor (Deep-elves · Tatyar) · Teleri (Lindar · Nelyar)
Calaquendi:
(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

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of the Coming of the Elves and the Captivity of Melkor"
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of Eldamar and the Princes of the Eldalië"
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of Fëanor and the Unchaining of Melkor"
  4. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of the Darkening of Valinor"
  5. 5.0 5.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of the Voyage of Eärendil and the War of Wrath"
  6. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The War of the Jewels, "Part Four. Quendi and Eldar" p. 381
  7. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Valaquenta: Of the Valar"
  8. 8.0 8.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lost Road and Other Writings, "Part Two: Valinor and Middle-earth before The Lord of the Rings, VI. Quenta Silmarillion", p. 215 footnote to §29
  9. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Index of Names", Vanyar
  10. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, "Flies and Spiders"
  11. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lost Road and Other Writings, "Part Three: The Etymologies", p. 351
  12. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Peoples of Middle-earth, p. 402
  13. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The War of the Jewels, p. 383
  14. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Peoples of Middle-earth, "The Shibboleth of Fëanor", pp. 332, 356 (note 3)