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Dates
Made at the time of the founding of Gondolin in I 116, or shortly thereafter; presumably destroyed in the Fall of Gondolin in I 510
Location
The courts of the King in Gondolin
Origins
Created by Turgon himself
Pronunciation
be'lthil
Meaning
'Divine radiance'1

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  • Updated 31 July 2013
  • This entry is complete

Belthil

The silver tree of Turgon’s courts

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One of two trees crafted by King Turgon, which stood in his courts in the city of Gondolin. They were made as images of the Two Trees of Valinor, in whose Light Turgon had lived before he joined the Exile of the Noldor. Belthil was a silver-flowered image of Telperion, the White Tree, while its mate was Glingal, a replica of Laurelin the Golden.

Belthil and Glingal seem to have been made early in the history of Gondolin, and stood in the courts of the King throughout the history of that city (that is, for approximately five hundred years). They were presumably destroyed at the time of the Fall of Gondolin, though we have no clear account of their fate. We do know that in that ruinous battle Ecthelion fought Gothmog beneath the tower of Turgon, so their combat would have taken place in the shadow of Belthil and Glingal. Soon afterwards the tower itself fell, and perhaps this spelt the end of the silver tree. Within a century even the ruins of Gondolin would be overcome by the Sea, and at that time anything that remained of Belthil would have been lost beneath the rushing waters of Belegaer.


Notes

1

The name 'Belthil' seems to have originated as a rare name for the White Tree of Valinor, Telperion itself. So, Turgon's choice of name for his work was not original: instead he chose one of the many true names of the tree whose image he was creating.

See also...

Glingal, Gondolin

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