Tolkien Gateway


(Redirected from Undomiel)
"Who told you, and who sent you?" — Gandalf
This article or section needs more/new/more-detailed sources to conform to a higher standard and to provide proof for claims made.
John Howe - Arwen.jpg
Biographical Information
Other namesUndómiel (Q, "Evenstar")
TitlesQueen of Gondor
LocationRivendell, Lothlórien, Reunited Kingdom
LanguagePrimarily Sindarin[1]
BirthT.A. 241
RuleT.A. 3019 - Fo.A. 120
DeathFo.A. 121 (aged 2,901)
Cerin Amroth, Lothlórien
HouseHouse of Elrond
HeritageHalf-elven father, Elf mother
ParentageElrond and Celebrían
SiblingsElladan and Elrohir
ChildrenEldarion and several daughters
Physical Description
Hair colorDark[2]
Eye colorGrey[2]
ClothingGrey raiment with girdle of silver leaves;[2] silver and blue mantle[3]
"Frodo saw her whom few mortals had yet seen; Arwen, daughter of Elrond, in whom it was said that the likeness of Lúthien had come on earth again; and she was called Undómiel, for she was the Evenstar of her people."
The Fellowship of the Ring, Many Meetings[2]

Arwen Undómiel (Arwen is S, pron. [ˈarwen]; Undómiel is Q, pron. [unˈdoːmi.el]), often called Arwen Evenstar, was the betrothed of Aragorn II. She is the daughter of Elrond and Celebrían (and therefore grand-daughter of Galadriel). She rejects her Elven immortality (which she had the ability to do, since she was a half-elf, thus having the choice to be counted as an elf or a man) to marry Aragorn and die with him.


[edit] History

The romance between Aragorn and Arwen is reminiscent of that between the Man Beren and the Elf Lúthien. Few other marriages between Man and Elf were recorded in the annals.

A very young Aragorn encountered Arwen for the first time at Rivendell, where he had been living; she had been staying with her grandmother in Lórien. He fell in love with her when he first saw her, but it was not until they met many years later in Lórien that she fell in love with him.[3]

When the Hobbits arrived at Rivendell, Frodo saw Aragorn with her at one point—the first hint of their relationship.[2] Later, when the Fellowship came to Lothlórien, he remembered their earlier meeting.

When Éowyn fell in love with Aragorn it was his fidelity to Arwen that forbade him from reciprocating, thereby motivating Éowyn's subsequent actions during the Battle of the Pelennor Fields which had major repercussions for the defense of Middle-earth. Arwen continually served as inspiration and motivation for Aragorn, who had to become King before he could wed her; not an insignificant task, considering the many long years he devoted to this cause.[3]

Before taking to the Paths of the Dead, Aragorn was met by a group consisting of Dúnedain, his people, from the North, and Arwen's brothers, Elladan and Elrohir.[4] They brought to him a banner on black cloth: a gift made by the hands of Arwen, and a sign that encouraged him to take the difficult path. When it was unfurled at the Battle of the Pelennor Fields to reveal the emblem of Elendil in mithril, gems, and gold, it was the first triumphant announcement of the King's return.[5]

Arwen was actually a very distant relative of Aragorn, being his first cousin sixty-three times removed. By their marriage, the long-sundered lines of the Half-elven were joined. Their union also served to unite and preserve the bloodlines of the Three Kings of the High Elves (Ingwë, Finwë, and brothers Olwë and Elwë) as well as the only line with Maiarin blood through Arwen's great-great-great grandmother, Melian.

Arwen gave up her life in Fo.A. 121, at Cerin Amroth in Lórien, after the death of Aragorn.

[edit] Genealogy

Aragorn II

[edit] Etymology

Arwen means "Noble Maiden" in Sindarin (from ara- = "noble" and gwenn = "maiden").[6] The Quenya form of her name is not entirely certain, it is possible to calque Arwen to Quenya as Aranwen (pron. [aˈranwen] using aran- and wendë, stem Aranwend-; compare masculine Aranwë), but Arwen itself is also coincidentally a valid Quenya synthesis (using ar-, stem Arwend-), meaning the possibility that Arwen's name is the same in Sindarin and Quenya. Her epessë, Undómiel, means "Evenstar", from Undómë "evening twilight" and el "star".

[edit] Portrayal in Adaptations

Arwen in adaptations

1978: The Lord of the Rings (1978 film):

Arwen does not appear.

1981: The Lord of the Rings (1981 radio series):

Arwen is voiced by Sonia Fraser.

2002: The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (video game):

Arwen appears in Rivendell after the Council of Elrond. She has a brief dialogue with Aragorn, and recites several lines from the Riddle of Strider. No voice actress is specified, but it is likely Kath Soucie.

2001-03: The Lord of the Rings (film series):

Arwen is played by Liv Tyler. Various additional scenes pertaining to Arwen are inserted, some of which deviate from the books and some of which seem inspired by The Tale of Aragorn and Arwen.

In the first film, she rescues Frodo Baggins from the Black Riders at Bruinen, thwarting them with a sudden flood, summoned by an incantation. In the book, it was Glorfindel who put Frodo on horseback and sent him alone to flee the Black Riders, and Elrond and Gandalf arranged the flood. Also, in the book, Frodo defends himself against the Black Riders, whereas in the movie Arwen defends him. Arwen wields the sword Hadhafang,a non-canonical sword that belonged to her father.

There are scene in which Aragorn has a dream about Arwen in which they kiss, a scene where Arwen has an argument with her father about leaving for Valinor, and a scene where she actually departs for Valinor and then changes her mind and returns when she sees a vision of her future son, Eldarion.

In addition, towards the end of the cinematic trilogy she apparently becomes sick with grief possibly over Aragorn's seemingly hopeless cause and his impending death. Elrond takes the reforged Narsil, now Andúril, to Aragorn at Dunharrow, and tells him that her fate has become bound with the One Ring, and that she is dying. However, no explanation is ever given for these statements. Later, after the Ring is destroyed, Arwen is present at Aragorn's coronation without any signs of illness.

2007: The Lord of the Rings Online:

Arwen is a non-playable character and can be found in a gazebo overlooking the path from Rivendell into the Misty Mountains. She was not involved in the main storyline - or any side-quests for that matter - until 2010, when she passed Halbarad the banner she had made for Aragorn during the Epic Book Oath of the Rangers.

2011: The Lord of the Rings: War in the North:

Arwen resides in Rivendell, where players can discuss with her both historical and present subjects. While spotting appearance of Liv Tyler, her role is closer to the book that in the movie: for example, she provides Halbarad and the Grey Company the banner she had made for Aragorn, an event omitted from movie adaptation.

[edit] See Also

[edit] References

  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix F, "The Languages and Peoples of the Third Age", "Of the Elves"
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, "Many Meetings"
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, "The Númenorean Kings", "The Tale of Aragorn and Arwen"
  4. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Passing of the Grey Company"
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Battle of the Pelennor Fields"
  6. Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull (HarperCollinsPublishers 2008), The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion, p. 205