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


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  • Updated 2 July 2016
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Years of the Trees First Age Second Age Third Age Fourth Age and Beyond

A name for Men; one of the many ways used to describe the status of that race as the second of the Children of Ilúvatar to awaken in Middle-earth. Also called the 'Second People' or the 'Aftercomers', this concept of coming second into World is also the source of the Elvish name Atani (Sindarin Edain) used for Men.

The Firstborn, the Elves, first awoke in the time of the Two Trees, more than four thousand years before the Sun would first rise. In that time Melkor was captured, imprisoned for three ages and finally released, and many of the Eldar left Middle-earth to settle in Valinor. Melkor destroyed the Two Trees and escaped into Middle-earth, and from the last golden fruit of Laurelin the Valar formed the Sun and set it aloft. As it rose into the sky for the first time, the Secondborn awoke in the distant eastern land of Hildórien.

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