Elanor Gardner

From Tolkien Gateway
The name Elanor refers to more than one character, item or concept. For a list of other meanings, see Elanor (disambiguation).
Elanor Gardner
Jenny Dolfen - Elanor the Fair.jpg
"Elanor the Fair" by Jenny Dolfen
Biographical Information
LocationBag End, Hobbiton
Birth25 March T.A. 3021
DeathAfter Fo.A. 61
ParentageSamwise Gamgee and Rose Cotton
SiblingsFrodo, Rose, Merry, Pippin, Goldilocks, Hamfast, Daisy, Primrose, Bilbo, Ruby, Robin and Tom
SpouseFastred of Greenholm
ChildrenElfstan and Fíriel
Physical Description
Hair colorBlonde
GalleryImages of Elanor Gardner
"You were born at the end of a great age, Elanorellë"
Samwise Gamgee[1]

Elanor Fairbairn (née Gamgee or Gardner) was the first child of Master Samwise Gamgee and his wife Rose Cotton.

Life[edit | edit source]

Called "The Fair" for her golden hair, she was born 25 March 1421 by Shire Reckoning (which was T.A. 3021), which was at the same time the first day of the Fourth Age in Gondor.[2] Elanor was also the only one of Samwise's children known to the Ringbearer, Frodo Baggins, and her name was a suggestion by him.[3]

In S.R. 1436 Elanor became a maid of honour to Queen Arwen Evenstar, and in S.R. 1442 she rode to Gondor with her parents and stayed there for a year. In 1451 she married Fastred of Greenholm. Four years later, Fastred was named Warden of Westmarch by the Thain at the request of Samwise, and the couple moved to the Undertowers on the Tower Hills.[4]

She last saw her father in 1482 when he came to the Tower Hills, passing to her the Red Book. so Elanor and her line became the keepers of the Red Book of Westmarch, and handed down the tradition that Sam passed to the Undying Lands.[4]

Her two children were Elfstan, born in 1454,[4] and Fíriel.[5] Her descendants (becoming known as the Fairbairns of the Towers) would live for many generations.[4]

Etymology[edit | edit source]

The name is a reference to the sun-star, a little golden flower blooming in the land of Lothlórien — this perfectly satisfied Sam's desire for a name that was both Elvish and yet at the same time a simple flower-name as many hobbit-lasses had.[3]

Other versions of the legendarium[edit | edit source]

Besides her presence as an infant in the last chapter of the published The Lord of the Rings, and the details noted in the appendices of that book, Elanor's most significant role was in the two versions of the written but unpublished epilogue of The Lord of the Rings. In that epilogue Elanor talks with her father about the importance of the events that transpired in the story and also about the coming of King Elessar and Queen Arwen for a visit. Elanor's affectionate name for her father is "Sam-dad", while Sam calls her "Elanorellë".[1]

Portrayal in adaptations[edit | edit source]

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

Elanor can be heard crying as Frodo (Ian Holm) tells Sam (Bill Nighy) that he must go on with his life. The crying is actually by Holm's son, Harry.

2003: The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King:

Elanor was played by Alexandra Astin, the daughter of Sean Astin.

2010: The Lord of the Rings: Aragorn's Quest:

Elanor is available as a second player, playing Gandalf to Frodo's Aragorn. She wears a wizard's hat and a stick to serve as staff.


  1. 1.0 1.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Sauron Defeated, "Part One: The End of the Third Age: XI. The Epilogue"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B, "The Chief Days from the Fall of Barad-dûr to the End of the Third Age"
  3. 3.0 3.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Grey Havens"
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B, "Later Events Concerning the Members of the Fellowship of the Ring"
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Adventures of Tom Bombadil, "Preface", note 2