At least among the Eldar of Valinor and their descendants, it was the custom of the Elves to be given two names (or essi) by their parents: one by their father at birth, and another, later, by their mother. Some more famous Elves also acquired a third name. This epessë, or 'after-name', described their better known qualities or exploits, and was taken up into later histories as their usual name. The most famous examples of these 'after-names' were Gil-galad (originally named 'Ereinion') and Galadriel (whose original father- and mother-names were, respectively, 'Artanis' and 'Nerwen').
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