The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Dates
Awoke or was born by Cuiviénen; slain I 5021
Race
Division
Culture
Settlements
Pronunciation
e'lloo thi'ngol ('th' as in English 'thin')
Meaning
Thingol comes from Sindacollo, 'Greycloak'; Elu is from Thingol's original name Elwë, 'star person'
Other names
Titles

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  • Updated 24 April 2021
  • This entry is complete

Elu Thingol

Greatest of the lords of the Sindar

(Awoke or born at Cuiviénen)
Elu
Thingol

The mighty Elf originally known as Elwë Singollo was born among the first generations of the Elves in Middle-earth. Said to have been the tallest of the all the Children of Ilúvatar, and the greatest of all the Elves other than Fëanor, he had long silver-grey hair2 and piercing eyes that shone like stars. At Cuiviénen in the earliest days of the Elves, Elwë and his brother Olwë jointly led the numerous people who would become known as the Teleri.

The Great Journey into the West

Elwë was among the Elves when they were first discovered by the Vala Oromë, and was one of three chosen to form an embassy to Valinor. Transported into the West with his fellow lords Ingwë and Finwë, he beheld the Two Trees in their shimmering glory before returning to his people. Awed by what they had seen beyond the Great Sea, Elwë and his fellow ambassadors urged their people to abandon Cuiviénen and embark on a Great Journey into the West. Elwë and his brother Olwë led the largest and slowest of the hosts to set out on the Journey, and it was because of their slowness that this people gained their name, Teleri, 'those who come last'.

The hosts crossed the Blue Mountains and came to the wide region known as Beleriand, westernmost of the lands of Middle-earth. Elwë and his people encamped for a while in the east of that region, in the land that would become known as Ossiriand, and often their lord would travel westward to meet with his friend Finwë. Riding back from one such journey, he wandered into the dark wood of Nan Elmoth. There he encountered the Maia Melian and an enchantment fell upon him, so that years passed by outside the forest while Elwë and Melian stood unmoving beneath its trees.

At last Elwë and Melian emerged from Nan Elmoth to find that nearly two centuries had passed while they had been within their enchantment. In that time the Elves of the Vanyar and the Noldor had already passed across the Sea while the Teleri had searched for their lost lord. Eventually many of Elwë's own people had abandoned the search, and they too had passed into the West, leaving a remnant of their fellow Teleri - and Elwë himself - in Middle-earth with no means of continuing the Great Journey. Throughout the long years that he remained in Middle-earth, Elwë Singollo yearned for the Light of the Two Trees in Valinor, now lost to him beyond the uncrossable Great Sea.

Tall and lordly as he had been before his encounter with Melian, Elwë was now transformed, and was said to appear almost as one of the Maiar. Those of his people who remained became known as the Grey-elves, the Sindar (indeed some sources claim that their name came, at least in part, from Elwé's surname Singollo or Sindacollo, meaning 'Greycloak').

Lord of Eglador

Left behind in Middle-earth by their fellow Elves, the Sindar called themselves Eglath, 'the Forsaken'. In the great central forests of Beleriand, Elwë and Melian founded a realm that was at first called Eglador ('land of the Forsaken'). With him were many of his kin, including his brother Elmo and his kinsman Celeborn, while Círdan (who, like Elwë, belonged to the Teleri) ruled the Sindar who lived on the western shorelands of the Falas. In Elwë's court were other Elves who would become famed in their own right: Beleg Strongbow, Mablung of the Heavy Hand, and Daeron the loremaster.

In the early days of the new realm there was peace under the stars of Beleriand (the Sun and Moon had not yet been created) and its people dwelt in bliss. Over the years the language of Elwë's people changed, and their names changed also. Elwë Singollo who set out on the Great Journey became known as Elu Thingol, or more commonly simply Thingol, the name by which he is best known from the histories of that time.3

Slowly the power and influence of Thingol and Melian spread, and within a few centuries all of the Elves of Beleriand, from the farthest west to the farthest east, acknowledged Thingol as their lord. Under the teaching of Melian the Maia, the Sindar of Beleriand became the wisest and fairest of all the Elves who remained in Middle-earth east of the Great Sea. Nearly five hundred years after the foundation of Eglador, a daughter was born to Thingol and Melian: Lúthien, named as the fairest of all the Children of Ilúvatar, who would - far in the future - draw her father into the web of an unstoppable destiny.

Lúthien was born as the first of three ages of imprisonment passed for Melkor, far away within the Halls of Mandos. As the second age of his captivity began, Melian's foresight warned her of approaching troubles for the land of Eglador. Following her council, and with the aid of the Dwarves who had newly entered Beleriand from the east, Thingol created a stronghold for himself. This new capital of Thingol was carved beneath the earth on the banks of the river Esgalduin. Named Menegroth, the Thousand Caves, it was renowned as a work of extraordinary beauty and subtlety, especially the great central chamber in which Thingol and Melian had their thrones. Above this chamber, Menelrond, a great dome rose that was decorated with the stars of heaven.4 Even after the making of Menegroth, Thingol did not dwell there at all times, and in the height of summer he would go out and live among the forests as he had before its building.

It was at about this time that Thingol's loremaster Daeron devised a runic system of writing. Thingol's own people thought little of this invention, but the Dwarves of the Blue Mountains adopted it eagerly. Those Dwarves brought word to Menegroth that dark things were stirring in the wilds beyond the Mountains, and with the aid of the Dwarven smiths, Thingol began to stock his armouries. In the years that followed, Orcs, wolves and other creatures began to come into Beleriand from the east, but Thingol's newly armed Sindar drove them back. It was probably at this time that Thingol acquired his own famous sword Aranrúth, which would be passed down through his descendants for millennia to come.

Much of Beleriand at this time was only sparsely settled, though Thingol's own realm of Eglador, and the coastland regions of the Falas were already densely populated. The numbers of Elves in Beleriand swelled when a new company came over the Blue Mountains. These were a branch of the Nandor, a people related to the Sindar who had turned away from the Great Journey, but an Elf named Denethor had persuaded many of them to follow him across the Mountains from Eriador. Denethor and his people were welcomed by Thingol, and settled in Ossiriand, the Land of Seven Rivers between Gelion and Ered Luin.

Thingol and Melian ruled Eglador under the stars for more than three thousand years, but the peace of their realm came to a sudden and unforeseen end when a monstrous being in spider form appeared from the North and threatened their boundaries. This was Ungoliant, who had aided Melkor in the Darkening of Valinor and returned with him to Middle-earth before being driven out of the North by the Balrogs (though Thingol and his people knew nothing of these events at the time). Ungoliant was driven off from Thingol's borders by the power of Melian, but the great spider remained lurking in the Mountains of Terror northward of the forest realm for a time, filling those mountains with her dreadful offspring.

After his return to Middle-earth, Melkor - now commonly called Morgoth - established himself at Angband and sent out a wave of Orcs against Thingol's lands. These Orcs poured into Beleriand from the passes to the west and east of the land. In the east, with the aid of Denethor and his people, as well as the Dwarves of the Blue Mountains, Thingol's forces were able to defeat the Orcs with great loss, and Thingol's realm was swelled with many of the eastern Elves fleeing from war. The western Orcs could not be defeated; they set up a defensive line and put Círdan's Havens of the Falas under siege, cutting him off from Thingol.

King of Doriath

With the onset of the Orcs, Thingol gathered his people within the great central forests of Neldoreth and Region, and Melian raised a power of protection around those forests. This Girdle of Melian completely surrounded the forests of Thingol's realm, so that he and his people were secure in the heart of his land. None could enter his land with Thingol's permission, and few of his own people were allowed to leave. With the raising of this magical barrier, the land of Eglador gained a new name, Doriath, 'land of the fence', and by that name it is most usually known in the histories of the First Age.

At this time even more remarkable events were afoot. A new force of Elves appeared in Beleriand when the Noldor crossed out of Aman and reached the far northwest of Middle-earth. In the Dagor-nuin-Giliath, the Battle-under-Stars, these Noldor routed the Orcs that roamed Beleriand and freed Thingol's people from their threat. Indeed, at this point it was generally believed by the Elves of Doriath that the Noldor had been sent by the Valar for this very purpose, and it was only later discovered that the truth was quite different. Soon after the Battle-under-Stars, two brilliant new lights appeared in the sky, sailing among the stars: the Moon and the Sun, of whose making in Valinor Thingol and his people could not have known.

Though he understood nothing at this time about the reasons behind the Return of the Noldor, Thingol remained more suspicious than most of his people, and while it seemed that danger had been averted, Melian nonetheless maintained her Girdle around Doriath. Nonetheless, among the Noldor were members of the House of Finarfin, and these were kin to Thingol (Eärwen, daughter of his long-departed brother Olwë, was mother to Finarfin's sons). He sent messages permitting the new arrivals to settle in Hithlum, Dorthonion and East Beleriand - places on the fringes of his lands where Thingol had few people and little power.

Galadriel was the daughter of Eärwen, and thus the granddaughter of Thingol's brother Olwë. She stayed at the court of Menegroth and gained the friendship of Melian, and so Thingol came to learn of the Kinslaying, the deaths of his own brother's people at the hands of the Noldor, and the particular guilt of the Sons of Fëanor. Filled with anger, from this time Thingol spurned the Sons of Fëanor and all their people. Of all the Noldor, only those of the House of Finarfin - the children of his niece Eärwen - were permitted to enter Thingol's realm. At this time, too, Thingol banned the Quenya tongue of the Exiles from his lands, a command with far-reaching effects. Even at the end of the Third Age, thousands of years later, the Sindarin tongue of Thingol's people would remain the dominant Elvish language in Middle-earth.

Also banned from the realm of Thingol were people of the race of Men. These beings had yet to be seen in Beleriand, but Thingol had been troubled by disturbing prophetic dreams concerning them, and insisted that none should step within his kingdom. His heart was not, however, entirely hardened to this people. After Men did indeed cross the Blue Mountains from the East, a band of them made the perilous journey westward through Nan Dungortheb, the dread valley running northward of Doriath. Their leader Haleth petitioned Thingol to allow them to dwell within the Forest of Brethil, which the King considered part of his realm though it lay outside the Girdle of Melian. Persuaded by his friend Finrod, Thingol agreed, thus giving rise to that branch of Men known as the Men of Brethil or the People of Haleth.

War in Beleriand

Through the centuries that passed after their return to Middle-earth, the Noldor fought against the power of Morgoth, containing the Dark Lord within the Siege of Angband. Thingol played little part in these Wars, preferring that his people remain isolated within Doriath, and doing little more than defend his own borders. Others among the Elves followed Thingol in this defensive policy, notably the Lords of Nargothrond and, most successfully, Turgon of the Hidden Kingdom of Gondolin, who kept even the location of his city a secret for hundreds of years.

Nonetheless, Thingol and his realm did not remain unaffected by the battles raging beyond his borders. This was especially true after the ruinous attack of Morgoth in I 455 that became known as the Dagor Bragollach or Battle of Sudden Flame. This sudden assault raged across the northern lands of Beleriand, and many of Thingol's Grey-elves who had dwelt outside his realm fled from the war to take shelter within the Girdle of Melian.

Some two years after the first assaults of the Dagor Bragollach, the tower of Minas Tirith fell to Sauron, and the Pass of Sirion was thus left unguarded. Armies of Orcs began to swarm through the Pass, marching towards Brethil on Doriath's western borders. Hearing news of their coming from the Men of Brethil, Thingol despatched Beleg and a force of axe-wielding Elves to intercept the Orcs. This was Thingol's first direct entry into the Wars of Beleriand since the First Battle nearly five centuries earlier. It ended in victory, with Beleg and his people ambushing the Orcs from beneath the trees of Brethil, and defeating an entire legion of the foe.

The Coming of Beren

Less than a decade after the fall of Minas Tirith and the rekindling of war, Thingol received further disquieting news. His loremaster Daeron reported that he had spied Thingol's daughter Lúthien meeting among the trees of Doriath with a Man, Beren, who had somehow passed through the Girdle of Melian. Enraged by Daeron's report, Thingol demanded that Lúthien bring this Man before his throne and she agreed, though not before extracting an oath from Thingol that he would not harm or imprison Beren.

When Beren came before the throne of Doriath, Thingol was filled with anger, but his oath to his daughter prevented him from harming the Man. Instead he devised an impossible challenge: he would grant the hand of Lúthien if Beren would recover a Silmaril from the Iron Crown of Morgoth. Thingol's intention was to set a quest that could not be achieved, but - as Melian warned him - by naming a Silmaril, he brought himself and his domain under the power of the Curse of Mandos. Beren accepted the hopeless quest, and set out from Menegroth to seek one of the Jewels of Fëanor.

Nothing was heard of the quest for some time, until Daeron brought the King reports that Beren had attempted to pass Sauron's keep on Tol-in-Gaurhoth and been captured. To prevent Lúthien from placing herself in danger by attempting a rescue, Thingol imprisoned her in the heights of the great beech Hírilorn in the woods of Neldoreth. Lúthien had powers of enchantment, however, and was able to escape the forest and seek Beren in the wilds beyond.

After the disappearance of his daughter, Thingol fell into a dark mood. Melian, who had counselled against his actions, refused to give him her wisdom on the matter, but messages from Nargothrond finally revealed her location. Celegorm, a son of Fëanor who had forced his way into power in that realm, had taken Lúthien captive and urged Thingol to grant her hand in marriage. Thingol was furious, and considered open war against Nargothrond, but his spies revealed that Lúthien had once again escaped from captivity and evaded Celegorm's clutches.

Some time afterward, a new danger threatened Thingol's realm. His chief huntsman Mablung brought news from the north marches of Doriath, reporting that a monstrous Wolf was raging through the forests. It had passed through the Girdle of Melian unhindered, and slain all the northern guards but Mablung himself. At this time Lúthien and Beren returned to Menegroth, and their tale explained the Wolf's appearance. They had succeeded in Thingol's quest, and carried a Silmaril out of the depths of Angband, but as they made their escape the great Wolf Carcharoth had bitten Beren's right hand from his arm, and that hand held the Silmaril. Thus Carcharoth was driven by the agonies of the burning Jewel in its belly, and also by the forces of fate locked within it. Won over by the bravery of Beren, Thingol relented in his opposition to his daughter's union, and Lúthien wed Beren before her father's throne.

The King then assembled his greatest hunters to find and kill the Wolf. The hunters came upon Carcharoth by the river Esgalduin, and the maddened creature made a leap for Thingol. Beren threw himself before the King and, though he saved Thingol's life, he himself was mortally wounded. At the news of Beren's death, Lúthien died of grief, and Thingol descended into a darkness that seemed to age him as if he were mortal. Beyond the Sea in Aman, Lúthien's spirit pleaded with Mandos, keeper of the Houses of the Dead, to release Beren and herself. Alone in all of history, she succeeded, and Mandos allowed the two to return to Middle-earth as mortals. Lúthien went first to Menegroth, where she healed her father Thingol with a single touch, before departing with Beren to dwell apart on the Green Isle of Tol Galen.

Now the Silmaril that Beren and Lúthien had recovered lay in Thingol's vaults, and the Sons of Fëanor sent demands for its return. Melian counselled Thingol to give up the Jewel, but Thingol was angered by the proud tone of the demands. The power of the Silmaril also worked on the King, filling him with a desire to keep it. At his refusal, two of Fëanor's sons - Celegorm and Curufin - threatened to slay Thingol and take the Silmaril by force, and so Thingol strengthened the guard on his realm. Because of the enmity fostered by the Jewel, Thingol refused to join the other Elf-lords at the great battle of the Nirnaeth Arnoediad, allowing only Mablung and Beleg to go to that war. In that battle, Morgoth came close to defeat, so if not for the allure of the Silmaril, the Elves may even have defeated the Dark Lord.

The Fostering of Túrin

The battle was a disaster for the Eldar and Edain, becoming known as Nirnaeth Arnoediad, the Battle of Unnumbered Tears. Nonetheless, both Beleg and Mablung survived and returned to Thingol in Doriath. Soon afterward, Beleg discovered a child of Men on Doriath's northern borders. This was Túrin, the son of Húrin of Dor-lómin, whose father had been taken captive in the battle. Fearing for Túrin's safety in occupied Dor-lómin, his mother Morwen had sent him south to be raised in Doriath. After Beren's heroism, Thingol relented from his earlier ban on Men entering his kingdom, and accepted young Túrin as his foster-son.5

Túrin was eight years old when he was taken in by Thingol, and the King sent messages northward to Túrin's mother Morwen, urging her to join her son in the safety of Doriath. Morwen would not leave her homeland of Dor-lómin, though it was now under the power of the Easterlings, but she sent the famed Helm of Hador into Thingol's safekeeping. Thingol prized the Dragonhelm, and showed it to the young Túrin, though as a child he was unable to lift it. Túrin would remain in the King's household for the next nine years, before going out to fight beside Beleg on the marches of Thingol's realm, as one of the King's knights of the sword.

Over the next three years, Túrin only rarely returned to Menegroth. After one of these occasional visits, Thingol was told that Túrin had slain one of his counsellors - a certain Saeros - and had fled from the land. In fury, the King declared Túrin banished, and no longer his foster-son. Later, though, he discovered the fuller tale, that Saeros had mocked and scorned Túrin and then attacked him, and that his death was an accident brought about by his own actions. At this news Thingol forgave and pardoned Túrin.

Thingol sent out many messengers to find Túrin and bring him home to Doriath, but most abandoned the search within a few months. The last to return was Túrin's closest friend among the Elves, Beleg Strongbow, after more than a year in the wild. Beleg reported that he had found Túrin with an outlaw band, but that he had refused Thingol's pardon and would not return to Doriath. Beleg begged leave of the King to return to guard and guide his friend, and Thingol agreed. The King gave Beleg the famed black sword Anglachel to aid him in his quest, and Queen Melian granted him a supply of lembas.

Beleg returned to Túrin and together the two founded a new realm, Dor-Cúarthol around Amon Rûdh, from which they defended the lands against invading Orcs. Thingol did what he could to aid them in their endeavour, sending messages to his ally Orodreth in Nargothrond, urging him to lend what help he could to the cause of the Two Captains.

Soon news from Dor-Cúarthol ceased, and Thingol heard nothing from Beleg or Túrin. Rumours, however, began to reach Doriath of a new captain in Nargothrond, known as the Mormegil the Black Sword, whose prowess had driven the Orcs back. His actions had indeed opened a route for Túrin's mother Morwen and his sister Niënor to escape from Dor-lómin, and they were greeted by Thingol as they finally succeeded in reaching his protected realm.

After a time, refugees began to appear on Doriath's western border, and from them Thingol learned something of Túrin: he had indeed been the Mormegil of Nargothrond, but the Dragon Glaurung had come against the kingdom, overrun its armies and sacked it. Of Túrin's fate no word came, and so Thingol decided to send out a small party of scouts to investigate. With them, against Thingol's advice, went Túrin's mother Morwen. It was only later discovered that his sister Niënor had also followed them in secret.

From this mission Mablung returned, but neither Morwen nor Niënor were with him. So Thingol learned that Glaurung still held the halls of Nargothrond, for he had attacked Mablung and his people. Morwen had been lost in the mists created by the Dragon, and while Niënor had been found, Glaurung's Dragon-spell had robbed her of her memory. Mablung had attempted to guide her back to Doriath, but she fled into the wild and was lost. Returning to Thingol, Mablung was ready to surrender his rank, but on Melian's advice the King accepted that he could have done no better than he did against such a foe.

The Nauglamír and the Doom of Thingol

Four years after the loss of Morwen and Niënor, further news of Glaurung came to Menegroth: the Dragon had departed from Nargothrond and was making his way northward, towards the Forest of Brethil on Doriath's western borders. Mablung led a party of soldiers out to discover more, and through them Thingol finally learned of the fate of his fosterson Túrin. Mablung and his companions had reached Brethil to find the Dragon slain but, through them, its slayer Túrin had learned that he had unwittingly wed his own sister, and in despair had ended his own life.

Three more years passed, and a new unforeseen visitor came to Thingol's halls: Túrin's father Húrin, who had been captured in the Nirnaeth Arnoediad thirty years beforehand. For those three decades, he had been forced to watch the lives of his family through the eyes of Morgoth, so he knew all the woes that had befallen them. Morgoth's vision had twisted all that he experienced, however, so he saw Thingol as having betrayed and cast his son into exile. Released by Morgoth, he made his way eventually to Doriath. He was taken by the watchers as he crossed into the land, and was brought before King Thingol.

At first Húrin was bitter toward Thingol for the King's imagined mistreatment of his son. On his travels before coming to Doriath, he had visited the now-deserted halls of Nargothrond and recovered the famous Necklace of the Dwarves, the Nauglamír, which he cast scornfully at Thingol's feet in 'payment' for the King's fostering of his son. Melian, however, used her power to soothe Húrin's mood and free him for Morgoth's twisted perceptions. Húrin took back his scornful words to Thingol, and instead presented the Necklace as a formal gift. Túrin's true father Húrin then took his leave of Túrin's foster-father Thingol, departing from Menegroth, never to be seen again.

Now Thingol possessed two of the greatest treasures in the whole of Arda: the Silmaril recovered by Beren and Lúthien, and the Nauglamír brought to him by Húrin. The King conceived the notion that the two could be combined, with the Necklace of the Dwarves being reforged to contain the shining Jewel of Fëanor. Within Menegroth at that time there were Dwarf craftsmen from Nogrod in the far off Blue Mountains, and Thingol summoned them and set out his intentions.

The allure of the Silmaril worked powerfully on Thingol, so that even as the Dwarves worked on the Jewel, he would sit and watch them as they worked. Finally the reforging was finished, and the golden collar of the Nauglamír shone with the light of the Silmaril. The power of the Jewel worked not only on Thingol but also on the Dwarves, so that when their work was done, they claimed it for themselves.

Thingol treated the Dwarves' claim with scorn and contempt, insulting them and demanding that they leave his realm. He was heedless of any danger, though he was alone in the deep smithies with the Dwarves, but the Dwarves raged against the King, and slew him. So Thingol, whose memory ran back to the earliest days of the Elves by Cuiviénen and who had seen the Light of the Trees of Valinor, met his end in the depths of his own stronghold. His last sight had been the Silmaril that shone with that same Light of Aman.

The Aftermath

The death of Thingol would bring disaster on his realm, but that disaster did not fall immediately. His murderers escaped from Menegroth into the woods of Region, but before they could get far most of them were slain by the Elves. The Silmaril was recaptured and taken back to Menegroth, but crucially two of the Dwarves were able to escape. They travelled the long leagues eastward to Nogrod, and there they stirred their fellow Dwarves to vengeance for their fallen kin.

With Thingol's death, his Queen Melian fell into deep grief, and the power of the Girdle of Melian that had protected the realm was withdrawn. At last Melian departed from Doriath, leaving Thingol's kingdom without the shield of power that had kept it secure through the centuries. With Thingol dead and Melian departed, the warriors of Doriath were left leaderless, and when the army of Nogrod invaded, the Elves were unable to hold them back. Menegroth was pillaged, and its looted treasures carried away by the Dwarves.

The Legacy of Thingol

Thingol's kingdom of Doriath did not survive for long after the loss of its King, and was laid in ruin by the Sons of Fëanor just seven years after Thingol's death. Nonetheless, as one of the greatest of the lords of the Eldar, Thingol left a tremendous impact on the history and culture of Middle-earth.

Probably the most significant and lasting effect of Thingol's reign was his insistence on the primacy of the Sindarin language, which made it the dominant Elvish tongue in Beleriand and across Middle-earth. Almost all Elvish place-names and personal names east of the Great Sea derived from that language, and so without Thingol's influence, names used throughout the geography and history of Middle-earth might have been significantly different.

The fact that Thingol was slain by Dwarves laid the basis for an ongoing resentment and distrust between Elves and Dwarves that continued down into the Third Age. Each of these peoples saw the other as being at fault, and this enmity had direct effects on history (as for example when Thranduil imprisoned Thorin, and the two later nearly came to war at the Lonely Mountain). The remarkably close friendship between Legolas and Gimli of the Company of the Ring was made in the face of a tradition dating back thousands of years to the death of Thingol.

Though his kingdom had been lost soon after his death, Thingol's bloodline survived for centuries and millennia. His great-granddaughter Elwing wed Eärendil the Mariner, and their sons were Elrond (later the Lord of Rivendell) and Elros (who ruled Númenor as its first King). The Kings of the Dúnedain in Númenor and in Middle-earth descended from the Line of Elros, and thus from Thingol. When Aragorn wed Arwen daughter of Elrond at the end of the Third Age, the lines of Elros and Elrond were reunited, and so the succeeding Kings of Gondor in the Fourth Age could claim descent from Thingol through both lines.


Notes

1

It would be natural to assume that Thingol awoke at Cuiviénen, being one of the first generation of Elves, and this seems likely, especially given his own description of himself:

'Elu Thingol, Lord of Beleriand, whose life began by the waters of Cuiviénen...'
The Silmarillion
Quenta Silmarillion 22
Of the Ruin of Doriath

This is difficult to reconcile, though, with the fact that he had brothers, Olwë and Elmo, and it may be that he was simply born there before the great migration to the West. The date of Thingol's death, too, is a matter of some uncertainty.

2

Different sources describe Elwë's hair in slightly different ways, sometimes calling it white, sometimes silver and sometimes silver-grey. It was clearly a silver or white colour, but it is contrasted with the hair of his brother Olwë, which was explicitly pure white in colour.

3

In the terminology of the Elves, the name Thingol was an epessë, a name added later in life to reflect some famous feature or achievement of the bearer (in this case Thingol's grey cloak).

4

According to some sources, the name of Elrond - who was Thingol's great-great-grandson - was inspired by the starry dome of Menelrond in Menegroth, although it should be mentioned that there are other accounts of his name at odds with this origin.

5

It was a remarkable thing for any Elf-lord to agree to foster a child of Men. For the Lord of Beleriand himself to do so was extraordinary, but Thingol's decision was in part driven by the fact that Túrin was distant kin to Beren. Beren's grandfather Bregor was also great-great-grandfather to Túrin, making Túrin Beren's first cousin, twice removed.

See also...

Adanedhel, Aelin-uial, Ainur, Algund, Alphabet of Daeron, Ancient Speech, Ancient Tongue, Angrod, Anguirel, Aranel, Aranrúth, Belegurth, Belthronding, Calaquendi, Camlost, [See the full list...]

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  • Updated 24 April 2021
  • This entry is complete

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