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|Other names||Son of Barahir, Camlost, Erchamion|
|Titles||Lord of Ladros|
Lord of Tol Galen
|Affiliation||Quest for the Silmaril|
|Birth||F.A. 432 |
|Death||F.A. 466 (aged 34)|
Hunting of the Wolf
Returned to life, final death: F.A. 503 (aged 71)
|Notable for||retrieving a Silmaril from Morgoth's crown; only Man ever to return to life|
|House||House of Bëor|
|Parentage||Barahir and Emeldir|
|Weaponry||Spear and Angrist; Dagmor (in the Lays of Beleriand)|
Unnamed horse (from Curufin)
|Gallery||Images of Beren|
Beren was the son of Barahir and Emeldir. He was a Man of the royal House of Bëor of Dorthonion. The Dagor Bragollach ("Battle of Sudden Flame") befell during his youth, bringing about the ruin of his land. The young Beren lived with his father and ten loyal followers in the highlands of Dorthonion, and the twelve of them performed many acts of bravery, to the great frustration of Morgoth, the Dark Lord of Angband. After the betrayal and death of the Outlaws of Dorthonion due to the treachery of Gorlim the Unhappy, Beren swore an oath to avenge his father, "but wept not, for his heart was ice". He recovered the Ring of Barahir from the Orcs, and lived on as an outlaw, whose feats of daring were renown throughout the free world. Eventually he was forced to abandon the land of his birth and the grave of his father by Sauron and Draugluin. He crossed into Doriath, where he saw and fell in love with Lúthien, princess of the Sindar and daughter of Thingol and Melian when he saw her dancing.
Thingol refused to give Lúthien's hand in marriage, as Beren was a mortal. He charged Beren that he would allow the marriage to take place only if he brought back a Silmaril from the Iron Crown of Morgoth. The task was intended to be impossible, but Beren was determined. He set out on this impossible quest with the aid of Finrod of Nargothrond, but was soon captured by Sauron and imprisoned in Tol-in-Gaurhoth. Lúthien, along with Huan the great hound, eventually came to their rescue.
Using Lúthien's powers to place Morgoth's court into a deep sleep, they were able to enter Angband where Beren was able to cut a Silmaril from Morgoth's iron crown. However, as they escaped from Angband, the great wolf Carcharoth, whom Morgoth had personally bred, awoke. Beren held out the Silmaril, hoping that its radiance would avert the beast, but he was mistaken. Carcharoth bit off his hand, swallowing it along with the Silmaril, and proceeded to run rampant through Doriath. Thus Beren was called Erchamion, "One-handed". Lúthien and the unconscious Beren were rescued by the Eagles of Manwë. Beren participated in the hunting of Carcharoth, where the beast was slain and the Silmaril recovered; the quest was accomplished, but in the process Beren was mortally wounded.
Unable to deal with the death of her beloved, Lúthien, overcome with grief, laid down and died. Her soul went to the Halls of Mandos, where she managed to move Mandos so that he granted her a wish. Both she and Beren were restored to life, but both of them would die the death of Men, and go beyond the walls of Arda to a place unknown.
 Later History
- "(...) and whether the second span of his life was brief or long is not known to Elves or Men"
- ― Draft to Quenta Silmarillion
Thus Beren and Lúthien lived again, and dwelt on Tol Galen in the middle of the River Adurant in Ossiriand. There they stayed apart from other mortals. Lúthien bore Beren a son, named Dior, Thingol's heir. He was considered to be one of the fairest beings to ever live, for in him flowed the blood of Men, the blood of Elves, and the blood of the Ainur. Through his descendants, the blood of Beren and of Lúthien was preserved among the Eldar and the Edain.
Beren was involved with the events of the First Age only one further time. After the murder of Thingol, Mablung was sent by Melian to warn Beren. He gathered the Green-elves and with the aid of some Ents they waylaid a group of the Dwarves of Nogrod who had destroyed Doriath and stolen its treasures. They ambushed the Dwarves and vanquished them in the Battle of Sarn Athrad; because the Lord of Nogrod cursed the treasure, Beren threw it in the river Ascar, but salvaged the Nauglamir which he brought to his wife. Their son Dior left to restore and rule Menegroth.
Beren and Lúthien died together on Tol Galen. Among the Children of Ilúvatar the final death of Beren and Lúthien is accounted in F.A. 503 for in the Autumn of that year Dior received the Silmaril in Doriath, and it was taken as a sign of his parents' death. In truth the date of their death is unknown.
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The story of Beren and Lúthien, though mentioned only briefly in The Lord of the Rings, was a central part of the legendarium. Tolkien once referred to it as "the kernel of the mythology". He went on to say that it "arose from a small woodland glade filled with 'hemlocks'", which he visited while serving in the Humber Garrison in 1918 (during World War I).
Tolkien seemed to be somehow connected to this character, and parallels can be drawn with his relationship with Edith Bratt. Furthermore it is possible that Beren (meaning 'brave') is a reference to the original meaning of his Germanic surname (Toll kühn) of similar meaning. It is said that, like the story of Lúthien dancing in the woods before Beren, that one day while Tolkien and his wife were on a picnic in the woods she danced for him, thus creating another parallel to Beren and Luthien.
Tolkien was buried in Wolvercote Cemetery (North Oxford) and this name appears on the stone:
- JOHN RONALD REUEL TOLKIEN Beren 1892 – 1973
The name of Lúthien also appears on the stone:
- EDITH MARY TOLKIEN Lúthien 1889 – 1971
|Barahir's Outlaw Band|
|Barahir · Beren · Gildor · Belegund · Baragund · Gorlim · Urthel · Dagnir · Ragnor · Radhruin · Dairuin · Arthad · Hathaldir|
 See Also
- ↑ J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lays of Beleriand; last version of the Lay of Leithian p. 344 cf. p.350 line 512
- ↑ J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 248, (dated 5 October 1963)
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of the Ruin of Doriath"
- ↑ 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. 306
- ↑ J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lost Road and Other Writings, "Part Three: The Etymologies", root BER p.352
- ↑ J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The War of the Jewels, pp.51, 231
- ↑ J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Appendix: Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names"
- ↑ J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 165, (undated, written June 1955)
House of Bëor
|8th Head of the House of Bëor|
F.A. 460 – 503
House of Bëor ceased to exist