The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Dates
Extant in III 30181
Race
Division
Uncertain, but probably either Nandor or Sindar
Culture
Settlements
Pronunciation
lee'ndeerr
Meaning
Probably 'singer'2

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  • Updated 6 October 2017
  • This entry is complete

Lindir

An Elf of Rivendell

One of the Elves of Rivendell, named briefly in The Fellowship of the Ring. After Bilbo's rendition of his song of Eärendil, Lindir claimed that he was unable to tell which parts were written by Aragorn, and which by Bilbo himself, explaining that he knew little of Mortals and their ways. He seems to have been a minstrel or musician himself: at least, the most likely interpretation of the name Lindir is 'singer'.


Notes

1

24 October III 3018 is the date of our only brief encounter with Lindir, but as an Elf of Rivendell he was probably at least several centuries old. Indeed, one of his few recorded comments is that 'Mortals have not been our study' (The Fellowship of the Ring II 1, Many Meetings). That's hardly direct evidence for Lindir's age, it can at least be taken to suggest that he was older than most Mortals. Going further, the origins of Lindir's name might hint that he was actually thousands of years old (see note 2 below).

2

Lindir's name is never explicitly explained, but it seems to mean 'singer' (from the common Elvish root lind-, 'song, music'). In The Lord of the Rings, his only appearance is in a brief discussion with Bilbo Baggins about the Hobbit's song of Eärendil, which neatly matches the interpretation of his name as 'singer'.

On a deeper level, the name Lindir perhaps tells us something about this Elf's past. During the distant history of the World, a group of Elves known as the Nandor fell away from the Great Journey into the West before reaching Beleriand, but a part of these people later crossed the Blue Mountains and settled in Ossiriand in the western shadow of the range. These people had many names, and were most commonly known as the Laiquendi or Green-elves, but they were also sometimes called the Lindi, or 'singers'. Indeed because of their presence the land of Ossiriand was also known as Lindon, which became its common name after the end of the First Age.

We have no way to be sure whether Lindir originated as one of these Lindi, or indeed whether any direct connection is intended between the two names. If there is a connection, though, it implies that Lindir's history might have run back into the First Age, placing him among those Elves who survived in Lindon when Beleriand was overwhelmed. In the Second Age, it was people from this land who accompanied Elrond eastward on the journey that led to the founding of Imladris. Based on the the (admittedly rather speculative) origins of his name, then, Lindir might have been thousands of years old, and an inhabitant of Rivendell since its very beginnings.

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About this entry:

  • Updated 6 October 2017
  • This entry is complete

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