Fíriel's song

From Tolkien Gateway
This article describes a concept which is mentioned in J.R.R. Tolkien's works, but was never given a definite name.

Fíriel's song is a Qenya/Quenya poem (with English translation) by J.R.R. Tolkien, originally included in the unfinished novel The Lost Road (published in The Lost Road and Other Writings). Although Tolkien did not provide an official title, in the narrative it is sung by a maiden named Fíriel, therefore it is universally referred to as Fíriel's song.

History[edit | edit source]

Within the narrative, only the two first lines are given. They are sung by Fíriel, a maiden of Elendil's household and the daughter of Orontor. While Elendil and his son Herendil were approaching their house, they heard Fíriel until her voice fell in the question "O Ilúvatar, give me in that day beyond the end, when my Sun faileth?" Then Elendil said "E man antaváro? What will he give indeed?" Herendil complained, saying that she should not be singing such things, as people in Númenor were now singing that Melko would come back and give them the Sun forever, but his father despised those words.[1]:62-63

The first manuscript of the narrative gives the whole poem and the English translation, while in the revision Tolkien decided to omit most parts and leave only the two first lines.[1]:71-72 Helge Fauskanger explains that the language of this song could be called "near-LotR-style" Quenya, or late "Qenya".[2]

The poem[edit | edit source]

Quenya text

Ilu Ilúvatar en káre eldain a fírimoin
ar antaróta mannar Valion: númessier.
Toi aina, mána, meldielto - enga morion:
talantie. Alkar Mardello lende: márie.
En kárielto eldain Isil, hildin Úr-anar.
Toi írimar. Ilyain antalto annar lestanen
Ilúvatáren. Ilu vanya, fanya, eari,
i-mar, ar ilqa ímen. Írima ye Númenor.
Nan úye sére indo-ninya símen, ullume;
ten sí ye tyelma, yéva tyel ar i narqelion,
íre ilqa yéva nótina, hostainiéva, yallume:
ananta úva táre fárea, ufárea!
Man táre antáva nin Ilúvatar, Ilúvatar
enyáre tar i tyel, íre Anarinya qeluva?

English translation

The Father made the World for Elves and Mortals
and he gave it into the hands of the Lords. They are in the West.
They are holy, blessed, and beloved: save the dark one.
He is fallen. Alkar [Melkor] has gone from Earth: it is good.
For Elves they made the Moon, but for Men the red Sun;
which are beautiful. To all they gave in measure the gifts
of Ilúvatar. The World is fair, the sky, the seas,
the earth, and all that is in them. Lovely is Númenor.
But my hearth resteth not here for ever,
for here is ending, and there will be an end and the Fading,
when all is counted, and all numbered at last,
but yet it will not be enough, not enough.
What will the Father, O Father, give me
in that day beyond the end when my Sun faileth?

See also[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]