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Liz Danforth - Falathrim.png
Falathrim by Liz Danforth
General Information
Other namesElves of the Falas
OriginsTeleri persuaded by Ossë to remain by the Sea in Middle-earth
LocationsThe Havens of the Falas: Brithombar and Eglarest (occupied the western shorelands of Beleriand, around the mouths of the Rivers Brithon and Nenning)
MembersCírdan, Voronwë
Physical Description

The Falathrim were the shoreland Elves of the western shores of the Middle-earth who took Círdan as their lord from the beginning. They dwelt mainly in the ancient havens of Eglarest and Brithombar of the Falas, and their last home on Middle-earth before finally leaving for the Undying Lands was the Grey Havens.

History[edit | edit source]

The Teleri were the most numerous Elven clan and for this reason they were led by two brothers, Elwë and Olwë in the Great Journey to Aman. They were also the most slow and reluctant and many turned back or stayed behind. When Elwë became lost in Beleriand, many of his people refused to carry on until he had been found; those were named Eglath, the forsaken.

It was Olwë who led the rest to the shores of Beleriand. As they lingered at the Bay of Balar they were befriended and taught by Ulmo's vassal, the Maia Ossë. When Ulmo returned with the floating island to take the bulk of the Teleri to the West, Ossë convinced some of them to forsake Valinor and the other Elves and stay behind with him.[1]

These became the Falathrim, and their leader was Nowë[2], kin of both Elwë and Olwë, who stayed behind despite his great eagerness to see the light of Valinor.[3] He was later known as Círdan. The Falathrim settled on Beleriand's western shores, building themselves Havens at Brithombar and Eglarest and became the first builders and sailors of ships in Middle-earth's history.

When Elwë returned, he established the Kingdom of Doriath, claiming overlordship of all Beleriand as King Elu Thingol. The Falathrim, along with the Eglath, were considered Sindar, and found many pearls that they sent to him as gifts.[4]

After the Return of the Noldor, the Elves of the Falas became fast in friendship with the Deep Elves. Círdan attended the Mereth Aderthad with many of his people, where he swore oaths of friendship.[5] With Finrod's aid, the Havens of the Falas were strengthened and rebuilt. The Elves of the Havens enjoyed peaceful relations with all the Elves of Beleriand, and were particularly closely allied with the people of Nargothrond. As one of the most remote peoples from Morgoth's forces in Angband, the other Elvish lords would often send their children to the Elves of the Havens for safekeeping.

They fought beside the Noldor, too: in the Second assault on Hithlum, their mariners rescued High King Fingon from overwhelming hordes in Hithlum. After the Nirnaeth Arnoediad, Morgoth sent his hosts to besiege them, and both the Havens were overthrown. Most of the Elves of the Falas perished in the fall of the Falas, or were captured, but Círdan escaped. With his surviving followers and the young Ereinion Gil-galad, who was at that time lodging with the people of the Havens, he sailed southwards, and settled for a time on the Isle of Balar maintaining a haven.

As Morgoth's power overwhelmed the Eldar (perhaps soon after the Nirnaeth), some "seafaring Sindar from the west havens" fled with 3 small ships to the east. They ended up at the confluence of Morthond and Ringló. There they established Edhellond and were eventually joined by their Telerin kin, Silvan Elves from the north.[6][7]

During the War of Wrath, Círdan and Gil-galad sailed east to Lindon where Cirdan founded the Grey Havens on the newly formed Gulf of Lhûn, and the remnant of the Elves of the Havens must surely have accompanied him.

Etymology[edit | edit source]

Falathrim is a Sindarin name containing the words Falas ("surfline, sea-shore") and probably Rim ("host"). It means "Coast people".[8]

In one text, the names Falmari (Quenya) and Falathrim (Sindarin) both refer to the people of Círdan in Beleriand[9] however elsewhere and in the published Silmarillion, the Quenya name refers to those in Valinor,[10][11] and the Sindarin name to those of the Falas.[11]

Other names[edit | edit source]

The people of Círdan retained their name as Teleri and were known in Sindarin as Telir or Telerrim.[9]

Another name for the Falathrim was the Egladhrim, or the Eglain, a Sindarin name meaning "The Forsaken". While originally used as a name for the Sindar by themselves, it came to refer only to the Elves of the Falas, as distinguished from the "inland Elves" of Beleriand.[12]