The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Dates
Extant during the War of the Ring; almost certainly sailed into the West 29 September III 30211
Species
Division
Meaning
'grey-hair'2

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About this entry:

  • Updated 15 September 2001
  • Updates planned: 10

Shadowfax

The grey-silver steed of Gandalf

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A mighty horse of Rohan, the chief of the Mearas, tamed by Gandalf and reluctantly granted as a gift to him by King Théoden of the Rohirrim. Shadowfax is thought to have passed West over the Sea with his master.


Notes

1

Tolkien never states explicitly that Shadowfax sailed into the West. In his Letters, though, he gives such a wealth of clues and hints, we can state with near-certainty that the great horse sailed on the White Ship with his master Gandalf. (See The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien No 268, dated 1965).

2

Fax is an extinct word for 'hair' or 'coat', now only surviving in a few place- and family-names, like 'Fairfax'. In fact, Tolkien has anglicised the name 'Shadowfax' somewhat from its original form; in the Old English language representing the tongue of the Rohirrim who bred him, he would have been called Sceadufax or Scadufax.

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