Elven cloaks

From Tolkien Gateway
Elven cloaks
"Elven Cloak" by John Howe
Other namesCloaks of Lórien
OwnerFellowship of the Ring
AppearanceHooded cloaks of camouflaging colour
CreatorGaladriel and her maidens
GalleryImages of Elven cloaks

Elven cloaks were given to all nine members of the Fellowship of the Ring, woven for them by Galadriel herself and her maidens. Each cloak had a hood, was fitted to its wearer, and was fastened by a green Elven brooch. Their colour was hard to define – grey in twilight but green when moved or brown as fields or dusk-silver in the night. While they could not deflect a shaft or blade they acted as camouflage against unfriendly eyes.[1]


On 16 February T.A. 3019 as the Fellowship prepared to depart Lórien[2] the Galadhrim brought the cloaks to the travellers. Pippin asked if they were "magic cloaks". The term confused the Elves but they explained their properties, which seemed magical enough – they would hide the wearers, they were light, and warm or cool as needed.[1]

When the Fellowship were attacked at Sarn Gebir on 23 February[2] the grey cloaks defeated the aim of the archers of Mordor.[3] Boromir's cloak was folded and placed beneath his head in his funeral boat[4] on 26 February. The Elven cloaks hid their wearers on 29 February[2] when Merry and Pippin went unseen as two horsemen and their horses jumped over them just after Grishnákh was killed.[5] On 30 February[2] when the Three Hunters were sitting and watching the riders of Rohan pass by, they were not perceived by Éomer or his men, probably due to the Elven cloaks.[6]

In the hall of King Théoden, Gríma sneered at the "three ragged wanderers in grey". Gandalf explained that their raiment was grey for the Elves had clad them. Gríma then proclaimed that they were in league with the Sorceress of the Golden Wood (Galadriel), which nearly caused Gimli to attack him.[7]

On 29 February,[2] after they had descended a cliff by rope in the Emyn Muil, Frodo and Sam thought that Gollum might not be able to see them with their Elven cloaks on, but that he could smell and hear them.[8]

The Mouth of Sauron displayed Frodo's Elven cloak and brooch to the parley group at the Morannon[9] on 25 March.[2] At the end of the parley Gandalf seized the tokens.[9]

Portrayal in adaptations

2001: The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring:

In the movie, in Scene 41, the members of the Fellowship receive their Elven cloaks and brooches in Lórien.

2002: The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers:

In the movie, in Scene 18, Sam slides down the rock-strewn slope before the Gates of Mordor. Frodo races down while two Southron soldiers, seeing debris falling down the hill, approach the spot where Sam is half buried. Frodo reaches Sam, cannot free him before the soldiers arrive, and casts his Elven cloak over the two of them. We see the two soldiers gazing about, perplexed. When the camera scans downward a large rock is viewed before them, which is Frodo's Elven cloak perfectly concealing him and Sam. After they leave the cloak is thrown aside and Frodo pulls Sam free.