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

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  • Updated 28 November 2021
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High Folk of the West

The returned Eldar of Valinor

Soon after their awakening by Cuiviënen, many of the early Elves set out on a Great Journey westward across Middle-earth. These Elves became known as the Eldar, and their journey was daunting and dangerous. Many of them fell away from it, but eventually a great number of the Eldar were able to make the voyage across the Great Sea and reach the land of the Valar in the West.

There they remained for millennia, becoming the wisest and most knowledgeable of all the Children of Ilúvatar. Dissent eventually arose among them, however, kindled by the lies of Melkor. Eventually a great part of the Noldor, one of the original three clans of the Eldar, set out from Valinor to return to Middle-earth. Once there, they warred against Melkor, who had murdered their King and stolen the three Silmarils.

In Middle-earth, their time spent in Valinor gave the returned Noldor a depth of vision and insight that surpassed even the Sindarin Elves of Doriath. When Men first crossed into the lands of Beleriand, the first of the Elves that they encountered was Finrod, who was one of the High Elves who had returned from Valinor. At least among the descendants of these Men, such Eldar were known as the High Folk of the West.


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About this entry:

  • Updated 28 November 2021
  • Updates planned: 2

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