The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Location
In the sky; the precise location is uncertain, but Telumendil apparently lay southwards of Wilwarin or Cassiopeia
Origins
Created by Varda more than three Ages before the beginning of the First Age
Pronunciation
telu'mendil
Meaning
Uncertain, but perhaps 'friend of the dome of the heavens' (see text)
Other names
Perhaps equivalent to modern Cygnus

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About this entry:

  • Updated 7 December 2016
  • This entry is complete

Telumendil

A constellation created by Varda

One of the constellations devised by Varda to anticipate the awakening of the Elves into the World. Its name apparently contains the word telume, referring to the dome of the sky, so Telumendil means 'friend of the dome of the heavens'.

It is not known for sure which modern constellation corresponds to Telumendil. The similarity of the name to Telumehtar, a name for Orion, is misleading: we can be sure that Telumendil was definitely a distinct pattern of stars. In The Silmarillion, it's named between Wilwarin (modern Cassiopeia) and Soronúmë (probably Aquila, the Eagle). If this order corresponds to the appearance of the constellations in the sky (which is far from certain) then Telumendil would probably correspond to Cygnus the Swan, perhaps viewed as a figure with outstretched arms, as an explanation for the name 'friend of the dome of the heavens'.


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