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


About this entry:

  • Updated 18 December 2013
  • This entry is complete


The race of Men

Encyclopedia of Arda Timeline
Years of the Trees First Age Second Age Third Age Fourth Age and Beyond

One of the many names given by the Elves to the race of Men. Its meaning is not explained, but it presumably refers to the way that Men came to misunderstand and fear their own mortality. Ilúvatar granted death to Men as gift, a unique ability to pass beyond the World that was denied all other sentient beings in Arda, even the Valar themselves. Over time, and in part due to the corruption of Melkor, Men came to fear this gift, and did all they could to escape it (this is especially true of the later Númenóreans, who ultimately set out to a hopeless and disastrous war against the Undying Lands in search of immortality). This fear of Men for their gift from Iúvatar was a curse that they had devised entirely for themselves.

For acknowledgements and references, see the Disclaimer & Bibliography page.

Website services kindly sponsored by Axiom Software Ltd.

Original content © copyright Mark Fisher 1998, 2001, 2013. All rights reserved. For conditions of reuse, see the Site FAQ.