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Ilu is a Quenya word that means "all, everything, the world". As a cosmological term it includes everything that exists, the created being (Eä) but also God and the spirits who created it, and all souls.
Other versions of the legendarium
- "Ilu Ilúvatar en káre eldain a fírimoin.
(Qenya: The Father made the World for Elves and Mortals)"
- ― Fíriel's Song
In the early concept of the legendarium, Ilu was the name of "the World", signifying both the inhabited world and also the whole universe.
Ilu is everything that exists, and comprises of the habitable world proper (Ambar), with its layers of air and skies, the Sun, the Moon and the stars. All these are enveloped in the outer layer of air, Vaiya.
This concept evolved in a different cosmology in The Later Quenta Silmarillion, where new concepts are introduced: The habitable world is named Arda, more or less equivalent to both Ambar and Ilu; the whole existence, or created universe, is named Eä, which, unlike the former Ilu, is vast and might include other worlds other than Arda.
- J.R.R. Tolkien, "From Quendi and Eldar, Appendix D" (edited by Carl F. Hostetter), in Vinyar Tengwar, Number 39, July 1998, p. 20
- J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lost Road and Other Writings, "Part One: III. The Lost Road, (ii) The Númenórean chapters"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Shaping of Middle-earth, "V. The Ambarkanta"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Ainulindalë: The Music of the Ainur"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lost Road and Other Writings, Part Three: "The Etymologies"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Appendix: Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names", ilúvë
- Christopher Gilson, "His Breath Was Taken Away: Tolkien, Barfield, and Elvish Diction", in ’Tolkien Studies, Vol. XIV (eds. David Bratman, Michael D.C. Drout, Verlyn Flieger), p. 41
|Constellations||Anarríma · Durin's Crown · Menelmacar · Remmirath · Soronúmë · Telumendil · Valacirca · Wilwarin|
|Stars||Alcarinquë · Borgil · Carnil · Elemmírë · Helluin · Luinil · Lumbar · Morwinyon · Nénar · Star of Eärendil · Til|
|The Airs||Aiwenórë · Fanyamar · Ilmen · Menel · Vaiya · Veil of Arda · Vista|
|Narsilion||Arien · Moon (Isil, Ithil, Rána) · Sun (Anar, Anor, Vása) · Tilion|
|See also||Abyss · Arda · Circles of the World · Eä · Timeless Halls · Two Lamps · Two Trees · Void|