The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien


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  • Updated 31 October 2006
  • Updates planned: 2


Beings of illusion

Forms or ideas created through magical means to trick the unwary. In The Silmarillion, Sauron is called 'master of shadows and of phantoms' (Quenta Silmarillion 18) and he used them several times to trap his enemies. He discovered and destroyed Barahir's outlaw band through the use of a phantom, and they also played a part in the enslavement of the Nine Ringwraiths. Though Sauron had great power to create phantoms, they were not unique to him: Saruman, too, could produce phantom forms. For example, at the edge of Fangorn Forest, Aragorn and his companions briefly encountered a mysterious old man, who appears to have been a phantom sent by Saruman.

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