The Children of Ilúvatar comprised two races, Elves and Men, and of those two the Elves awoke into the World far earlier than Men - thousands of years earlier, in fact. They were thus known as the Elder Children of Ilúvatar or the Firstborn, and had many other names besides that recognised this relationship, such as the Elder People and the Elder Kindred. They were also known as the Eldar, but despite its similarity to the English word 'Elder', there is no connection: Eldar is a name from the Elvish language meaning 'People of the Stars'.
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