sauron was the first dark lord

Thesis on Morgoth and Sauron and their roles as Dark Lords (Part 1/4)

For my Tolkien project, I decided I was going to explore the dynamics of Morgoth and Sauron and see if I could make an estimate as to whether or not one was more effective as dark lord than the other. I did this in regard as I would not be able to debate whether or not one was more powerful (seeing as the Valar are higher beings then the Maiar, and seeing that Melkor was the eldest, he of course is indisputably stronger than Sauron).

However, just because you’re more powerful doesn’t always mean you’re more effective. We see this all throughout history in examples where generals themselves might not be very capable in battle but are able to gain mastery by being clever strategist. Therefore that inspired me to research if one could argue whether or not Morgoth or Sauron came closer to accomplishing their goal—dominion over Middle Earth (or Beleriand).

I did this by looking at a few key characteristics—longevity of rule (but more importantly, what was achieved), servants (those who served under them and attributed to their victories), their primary enemies (or the state of those they fought against), as well as their defeat (and what caused the finale fall). Then I concluded with their legacy and the impact they have throughout the legendarium.

 

General Disclaimer

  • I am not at all an expert, just a very passionate individual in Tolkien’s lore. Therefore some of what is stated throughout this essay may be based upon faulted research and weighed heavily by personal interpretation and opinion. So please do keep such in mind. Most of the information here was found within The Silmarillion, The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Unfinished Tales, as well as Tolkien Gateway and Wikipedia.

 

Longevity of rule

  • Important note to make here. Just because you are in power for a long majority of time doesn’t necessarily mean you used that time wisely. I’m sure most of us are very familiar with procrastination. Therefore I did not look simply at length of ‘reign’, but more so the accomplishments (and losses) experienced throughout the span of their rule.

 

Morgoth

Approximately 590 years (Years of the Sun)

  • Melkor is incredibly hard to estimate the exact length of time he was in power. This is because the majority of the Valian Years are left without date. The first primary experience of time is with the Years of the Trees, but even then how time is recorded will be drastically different when the Valar raise the sun and the moon
  • Therefore it is often argued as to whether or not the First Age is the longest or shortest of ages. If you try to make an assumption over the span of the Valian Years and couple it with the First Age, you are left with it being nearly 50,000 years in length. However, if you are to attribute the First Age with the rising of the sun to the defeat of Morgoth, it is around 590 years.
  • I took liberties here and for the sake of sanity, decided to account the beginning of Morgoth’s dominion in Beleriand being with the awakening of man and therefore the rising of the sun, equaling more so to the 590 years it would take until he is defeated. However, anyone can argue that his reign could be anywhere between 50,000 to 590 years, give or take a few.

Sauron

Approximately 6,462 years (Second to Third Age)

  • Sauron is easier to calculate in terms of authority than Melkor, seeing as recorded dates were more of a thing when he was around. However, it is still slightly difficult, as Sauron’s reign tended to act like that of a heartbeat; having its occasional rises and falls. Therefore to give one total of years in power is a little vaguer, seeing as he came and went throughout the second and third ages.
  • However, he was still present in Middle Earth for around 6,462 years (from the start of the second age to his eventual fall in the third age). Therefore that is the timeline I am going to associate with his rule. You could deduct 500 years, seeing as it wasn’t until S.A. 500 he began to rise in might in Middle Earth following the end of the First Age. You could also deduct years from the duration of his defeat in the Battle of the Last Alliance of Elves and Men as well as the time spent as being the Necromancer in The Hobbit.
  • But as I did so with Morgoth, I decided to take some liberties and simply to go with the start of the Second Age to his fall in the Third, seeing as he was still a threat for 6,462 years. However, this to can be reasonably debated and argued.

 

Accomplishments and Losses

  • Like stated, longevity doesn’t accredit to a successful reign. Therefore it is important to understand what each individual did in the time that they were given. However, it is also important to note: Just because you accomplished a lot, didn’t mean these accomplishments had long lasting effects or were of any significance in the long run. Losses themselves may even outweigh what was accomplished in terms of being effective or attributing to the finale victory.

 

Morgoth

Major Accomplishments

  • Destruction of Arda (V.Y. Unknown): Known also as the First War. Melkor assaults his brethren and disrupts the ordered symmetry they seek to build within Arda, causing cataclysmic events and shaping much of the geography
  • Destruction of the Two Lamps (Y.L. 3450): Melkor destroys the two lamps, ending the Spring of Arda
  • Destruction of the Two Trees (Y.T. 4995): Known also as the ‘Darkening of Valinor’ Manwe hosts a festival in Valimar to heal the feud of the Noldor. Melkor and Ungoliant destroy the Two Trees.
  • Capturing of the Silmarils (Y.T. 4995): Morgoth assaults and kills High King Finwe and steals the Silmarils. Feanor becomes High King and his sons swear an oath against Melkor and he is renamed Morgoth. The Noldor depart from Valinor, and the First Kinslaying occurs with the slaughtering of the Teleri and the sieging of their ships
  • Doom of Mandos (Y.T. 4996): Noldor are banished from Valinor and face great doom
  • Fall of Man (F.A. 60-c. 200): Morgoth is absent from Angband, after discovering Men. Persuaded by Melkor, Men stop worshiping Eru and turn to evil but some revolt. According to legend, Men now lose the gift to die at will as the result of divine punishment, and are doomed to lead short-life spans at the end of which death takes them by force.
  • Curse of the House of Hador  (F.A. 472-500): Morgoth chained Húrin to a chair on the slopes of Thangorodrim for not revealing the location of Gondolin, and from there– through Morgoth’s sorcery– he could watch the tragedies that would befall his family and the curse destroy his children, Nienor and Túrin.
  • Fall of Gondolin (F.A. 510): Gondolin, the Great Hidden City of Turgon and the Noldor, was betrayed by Maeglin and sacked by Morgoth’s forces. Resulted in the deaths of Turgon and the Lords Glorfindel and Echelion, but the defeat of Gothmog as well. Tuor and Idril escape.

Conclusion

  • Many of Morgoth’s accomplishments were ineffective in the longevity of Middle Earth. While Morgoth became close to victory after the Fall of Gondolin, much of what he achieved was often worked around.
  • When Melkor raised Arda, the Valar rebuilt it, when the lamps were destroyed, the Valar built the Trees, when the trees were destroyed, the Valar raised the sun and the moon. When the silmarils were stolen, only Feanor and his sons rallied an oath against him and such resulted in their own doom.
  • Morgoth’s curse and the fall of Hador had little impact in Morgoth’s overall goal of conquest. It was very much an issue of personal spite and achieved only the demise of one household.
  • However, the Fall of Man and Gondolin could very well be considered long lasting achievements. Men wouldn’t be restored until Numenor, and even then only a selected were given the longevity of lives. Gondolin allowed for Morgoth to draw close to a finale victory and was, in all terms; a success.
  • Therefore, only two of his eight achievements supported his overall goal.

 

Major Losses

  • Intimidation of Tulkas (Y.L. 1500): Tulkas arrives, the last of the Valar to descend into Arda. Melkor flees from him and hides in the halls of Ea
  • Siege of Utumno (Y.T. 4590): The Valar march to war against Melkor on behalf of the Elves and lay siege to Utumno in 4592. Known as the War of the Powers
  • Chaining of Angainor (Y.T. 4599-900): Melkor is captured, and bound in the great chain Angainor, Utumno is destroyed. Melkor is taken to Valinor in chains and sentenced to serve a term in the Halls of Mandos for three ages and then later freed from his sentence by Manwe.
  • Betrayal of Ungoliant (Y.T. 4995?): Melkor withheld the Silmarils in his right hand, having desired them too greatly to allow the Great Spider to devour them. In response, an enraged Ungoliant wrapped Melkor in her webs, and poised to devour him as punishment for his perceived betrayal. Having grown far larger and stronger than before by absorbing the light of the Two Trees, the Gloomweaver would have killed Melkor had not his cry of desperation been heard by his Balrogs, who took flight and saved their master
  • Siege of Angband (F.A. 60-455): Battle of Dagor Aglareb, the Noldor defeat Morgoth’s forces and start the Siege of Angband. Known also as the “Long Peace” it lasted hundreds of years in the early expanse of the First Age when the Noldor sieged the fortress of Morgoth. It was a time of plentitude, peace and happiness for Elves and Men and was when the Noldor reached the peak of their power. However the siege was not complete and Morgoth was able to send out forces through secret passages from the towers of Thangorodrim.
  • Battle of Fingolfin (F.A. 456): Fingolfin challenges Morgoth to single combat and is slain but cripples Morgoth in response for the remainder of the First Age.
  • Quest of the Silmarils (F.A. 466): Beren and Luthien come to Angband and achieve the Quest of the Silmaril by gaining a silmaril from Morgoth’s iron crown. They return to Doriath but Carcharoth ravages the land.
  • Slaying of Glaurung (F.A. 499): The first worm of Morgoth is slain by Túrin though later results in the death of he and his sister Nienor.
  • War of Wrath (545-587): will be discussed in The Finale Defeat (stay tuned for section 4)

 

Sauron

Major Accomplishments

  • Lieutenant of Angband (Y.T. 4599): Destruction of Utumno. Sauron escapes capture and remains in Angband, breeding orcs and trolls for Melkor
  • Corruption of Tol-in-Gaurhoth (F.A. 455-465): Finrod’s fortress of Minas Tirith is taken by the forces of Sauron; Tol Sirion is renamed Tol-in-Gaurhoth, “Isle of Werewolves”. Beren sets out for the Quest of the Silmaril. Receives the aid of Finrod Felagund. Here they are imprisoned in Tol-In-Gaurhoth following the duel or duelet of Finrod and Sauron. Finrod is slain by a werewolf but Beren is rescued by Luthien.
  • Creating the Rings of Power (S.A. 1200-1600): Sauron seduces and deceives the Noldor in Eregion in the guise of Annatar but Gil-Galad and Galadriel mistrust him. The Noldor under Celebrimbor are instructed by Sauron, and begin forging the Rings of Power. Sauron forges the One-Ring in secret and completes the building of his fortress Barad-dur. Celebrimbor begins fighting Sauron
  • Fall of Eregion (S.A. 1697): Eregion destroyed ending one of the last great elven strongholds in Middle Earth and Celebrimbor is slain, thus ending the line of Feanor. The doors of Moria are shut and Elrond establishes Rivendell in secret.
  • Fall of Númenor (S.A. 3255-3319): Ar-Pharazorn the Golden weds his first cousin Miriel, and seizes the throne of Numenor. Ar-Pharazorn sails to Middle Earth and takes Sauron captive. Sauron is taken prisoner to Numenor but begins corrupting the Numenoreans and becomes court advisor to Ar-Pharazorn. Sauron establishes himself as High Priest of Melkor, the Faithful are openly persecuted and sacrificed to Morgoth. Ar-Pharazorn sets foot on Aman.
  • Atheism in Númenor (S.A. 3300): Sauron convinces the Numenoreans that Eru was a lie created by the Valar to keep the children of Arda complicit. Melkor was then the giver of freedom, for he wished to empower man and not chain them as the Valar desire. Atheism = a disbelief in Eru as the Valar were not true ‘gods’
  • Recovery of the One-Ring (S.A. 3320): Gondor founded, Sauron returns to Mordor.

Conclusion

  • Sauron’s accomplishments were dramatically more long lasting within the longevity of Middle Earth then that of Morgoth.
  • The creating of the Rings of Power would continue to cause numerous incidents of greed, war and temptation, lasting well into the Third Age until his finale defeat. Those that wore the rings were bound to them and twisted into creatures called Ringwraiths, whose fates would forever be depended upon them. Those that possessed the One-Ring would find themselves becoming mad on its power and some even had to take leave to Valinor in a hopes to recover from its taint
  • Eregion was considered one of the last great elven kingdoms in Middle Earth, alike to the glory of those in the First Age. Upon its fall, nothing of similar power would be created by the elves in Middle Earth beyond those of pocket realms held by lords and ladies.
  • Much of the same, Numenor was considered to be the greatest kingdom of man and nothing in its likeness would be found in Middle Earth again. Upon its fall, Valinor was removed from the earth and Arda itself became round and foreign.
  • Lastly the recovery of the One-Ring allowed for Sauron to grow in malice and might once more, and he would return twice again to lay siege to Middle Earth.
  • Therefore five of his seven accomplishments attributed to his succession towards domination and the former two allowed for Sauron to gain much needed experience before allowing his aggression to stretch outward.

 

Major Losses

  • Humiliation of Huan (F.A. 465): Sauron takes the guise of a great wolf and attempts to overpower the hound Huan. However, he is gravely wounded and his forms stripped of him and he flees in the disguise of a bat and is not seen for the remainder of the First Age. This allows for Beren and Luthien to succeed in the Quest of the Silmarils (see Melkor’s Losses)
  • Rejection of Eönwë (F.A. 590?): After the War of Wrath, Sauron adopted a fair form and repented of his evil deeds in fear of the Valar. Eonwe then ordered Sauron to return to Valinor to receive judgement by Manwe. Sauron was not willing to suffer such humiliation and fled and hid himself in Middle Earth.
  • Forging of the Three Rings (S.A. 1590- T.A. 3021): Celebrimbor forges the Three Rings in secret. Would later be possessed by Elrond, Cirdan/Gandalf, and Galadriel. Known also as Narya (Ring of Fire), Nenya (Ring ofWater) and Vilya (Ring of Air)– preserved the beauty of Elven lands and would ward off Sauron’s power and influence throughout his return in the Third Age.
  • Minastir’s Navy (S.A.1700): Tar-Minastir (11th King of Numenor) sends a great navy to Lindon. Sauron is defeated and his forces retreat from the coasts of Middle Earth.
  • Fruit of Nimloth (S.A. 3280): The White Tree of Gondor is said to be tied into the fates of men and should it be burned or destroyed, their empires shall fall. Isildur steals a fruit from Nimloth, the white tree is burn in Sauron’s temple thereafter. Later given to Aragorn and replanted in the Third Age following Sauron’s defeat.
  • Drowning of Númenor (S.A. 3319): Ar-Pharazorn sets foot on Aman; the World is Changed. Aman and Tol Eressea are removed from Arda. Numenor is drowned and the world is made round. Elendil and his sons arrive on the shores of middle earth. Sauron is removed of his fair form.
  • the Last Alliance of Elves and Men (S.A. 3441): Elendil and Gil-Galad face Sauron in hand to hand combat. But they perish, though Isildur takes the shards of his father’s sword Narsil and cuts the One-Ring from Sauron’s finger. Sauron’s physical form is destroyed and Barad-dur is razed to the ground. Many elves depart to Valinor thereafter.
  • The Fellowship of the Ring (T.A. 3018-19): will be discussed in The Finale Defeat (stay tuned for section 4)

 

Overall Conclusion

  • This is not at all a professional essay and therefore it may be founded upon faulted information and heavily weighed by personal opinion. However, in concerns of longevity of rule but more importantly, of accomplishments; Sauron succeeded more towards his goal of dominating Middle Earth and the free people found within. His achievements possessed greater impacts in the longevity of Middle Earth. For more on Sauron in the Third Age, please wait for section 4 which will discuss The Finale Defeat.

But still, she was there, who was there before Sauron, and before the first stone of Barad-dûr; and she served none but herself, drinking the blood of Elves and Men, bloated and grown fat with endless brooding on her feasts, weaving webs of shadow; for all living things were her food, and her vomit darkness.”–The Two Towers, J.R.R. Tolkien

SHELOB by Poisonwasthecure

Silmarillion Project Help

As some of you well know, this semester I am attending a lecture class called the ‘Life and Works of J.R.R. Tolkien’. As expected, we have a finale project at the end of the semester in which we are supposed to present. Such must of course relate in some mannerism to Tolkien’s life or his works.

For myself, I have decided to discuss the dynamics between Morgoth and Sauron, primarily their roles as Dark Lords. The presentation within itself is to explore the differences between their approach and ultimately strive to answer the question– could it be argued that one is more dangerous than the other?

As some of you know, an often disputed conversation is a quote found within the Silmarillion when Sauron is first introduced stating; “–and was only less evil than his master in that for long he served another and not himself.” It is obvious from a logical approach, Sauron cannot be more powerful (or even equal) to the authority of Melkor, as being a maiar; he is physically weaker to that of a Valar, especially one that is ‘mightiest among the Ainur

However, as directed in the Silmarillion; “In all the deeds of Melkor the Morgoth upon Arda, in his vast works and in he deceits of his cunning, Sauron had a part–” Sauron’s influence in Melkor’s dominance over Arda cannot be disputed or discredited. But as we are evidently shown throughout the legendarium, Sauron was no master of war. Where as Morgoth could easily designate with brute force, his servant had to turn towards charm and manipulation for gain.

Therefore, the purpose of this presentation is to discuss the basis of Chaotic Evil vs Lawful Evil. Such is where I would love to have your thoughts and/or opinnions upon this topic for I do not believe there is an honest answer here. 

Some may believe that Sauron came closer to achieving the conquering of Middle Earth in the 6,000 years he reigned from the Second to Third Age then Melkor managed to accomplish in the 50,000 years that was the First Age. However, an argument could be poised that Sauron faced a lesser competition, with the glory of the elves fading and the Valar retreating from this world. After all, Morgoth did manage to hold superiority for 50,000 years. 

But what do you all think? Is the brutality of Morgoth more deserving of the accreditation of a Dark Lord or do you believe in the slyness of Sauron proved a much more deadly advisory? Feel free to comment on this post or even reblog with your ideas or simply share to help spread the word! After all, asking yourself who’d be worse to deal with is a lot left up to opinion then an honest answer and because of that– I need opinions for this presentation!

- Ardie

3

Sauron Through The Ages

1. Mairon. First Age. “Nothing is evil in the beginning. Even Sauron was not so." Sauron was prominent among the Maiar who served Aulë the Smith, the great craftsman of the Valar. As a result, Sauron came to possess great knowledge of the physical substances of the world, forging, and all manner of craftsmanship—emerging as "a great craftsman of the household of Aulë”. Sauron’s original name was Mairon (the Admirable), but this name was changed to Sauron after he joined Melkor. However, during the Second Age Sauron continued to call himself Tar-Mairon (Lord Mairon).

2. Sauron. First - Second Age. Known as Gorthaur the Cruel, Sauron was at that time a master of illusions and shapeshifting; werewolves and vampires were his servants, chief among them Draugluin, Father of Werewolves, and his vampire herald Thuringwethil.

3. Annatar. Second Age. As part of a plan to seduce the Elves into his service, Sauron assumed a beautiful appearance as Annatar, "Lord of Gifts", befriended the Elven-smiths of Eregion, led by Celebrimbor, and counselled them in arts and magic. Sauron hinted that he was an emissary of the Valar, specifically of Aulë, whom the Noldor in Exile held in high regard. 

4. Numenorean Form. Second Age. Through the power of the Ring, Sauron soon became an advisor of the king, and he used his influence to undermine the religion of Númenor. He represented Eru as an invention of the Valar that they used to justify their decrees, and substituted the worship of Melkor, with himself as high priest, for that of Eru. The worship of Melkor, with human sacrifice, became mandatory in Númenor.

5. Sauron. Second - Third Age. The Dark Lord had returned to Mordor when Mount Doom erupted. During the final battle on the slopes of Mount Doom, Sauron was slain by Gil-galad and Elendil, who themselves perished in the act. / Around the year 1050 (III Age), a shadow of fear fell on the forest later called Mirkwood. As would later become known, this was the first sign of Sauron’s remanifestation, but for many years he was not recognized. He was known as the Necromancer. He established a stronghold called Dol Guldur, “Hill of Sorcery”, in the southern part of the forest not far from Lórien.

So, this is something about how I imagine Sauron - The Greates Enemy of Middle Earth. Mairon form inspired by Phobs’s works. Maybe later will color them all. Hope, you like it =)

Thesis on Morgoth and Sauron and their roles as Dark Lords (Part 2/4)

For my Tolkien project, I decided I was going to explore the dynamics of Morgoth and Sauron and see if I could make an estimate as to whether or not one was more effective as dark lord than the other. I did this in regard as I would not be able to debate whether or not one was more powerful (seeing as the Valar are higher beings then the Maiar, and seeing that Melkor was the eldest, he of course is indisputably stronger than Sauron).

However, just because you’re more powerful doesn’t always mean you’re more effective. We see this all throughout history in examples where generals themselves might not be very capable in battle but are able to gain mastery by being clever strategist. Therefore that inspired me to research if one could argue whether or not Morgoth or Sauron came closer to accomplishing their dominion over Middle Earth (or Beleriand).

I did this by looking at a few key characteristics– longevity of rule (but more importantly, what was achieved), servants (those who served under them and attributed to their victories), their primary enemies (or the state of those they fought against), as well as their defeat (and what caused the finale fall). Then I concluded with their legacy and the impact they have throughout the legendarium.


Servants 

  • Armies are what win wars and it’s important to employ those who will help you and not hurt you under your command. What is also important is your relationship with said army and servants. Those who desire your victory will work harder to accomplish it. Those who are merely doing so in order to survive do not possess the same initiative.

General Disclaimer

  • I am not at all an expert, just a very passionate individual in Tolkien’s lore. Therefore some of what is stated throughout this essay may be based upon faulted research and weighed heavily by personal interpretation and opinion. So please do keep such in mind. Most of the information here was found within The Silmarillion, The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Unfinished Tales, as well as Tolkien Gateway and Wikipedia.


Morgoth

Major Servants (* most of these summaries taken from the Tolkien Gateway)

  • Sauron: The greatest and most trusted servant of Morgoth before and during the First Age. Originally a Maia of Aulë named “Mairon”, he was ensnared by Melkor and as “Gorthaur” he became Morgoth’s lieutenant in his Wars of Beleriand. He demonstrated the ability to take the form of a wolf, a serpent, and a vampire.

  • Glaurung: First of the dragons and one of the foremost lieutenants of Morgoth during the First Age– possessed a unique power to charm and ensare his prey and said to be the mightiest of dragons.

  • Ancalagon: Greatest of the winged Dragons of Morgoth. Morgoth unleashed the winged dragons, with Ancalagon at their van. Ancalagon drove back the forces of the Valar, but was stopped by Eärendil.
  • Gothmog: High-captain of Angband, one of the chief servants of Morgoth with a rank equal to that of Sauron. One of the Maiar that followed Melkor to exile, and because of either his brilliant mind or because of his ability to assume an immensely powerful physical form, he was made the Lord of Balrogs.
  • Carcharoth: Bred from the foul breed of Draugluin, the first Werewolf, and fed with elvish and mannish flesh by Morgoth himself. He was the greatest, most powerful wolf to ever live. Carcharoth was set as a guard on the Gates of Angband, and later he mortally wounded both Huan, the Hound of Valinor, and Beren



Minor Servants

  • Dragons: Also known as the Great Worms; they were evil creatures seen mostly in the northern Middle-earth. Greedy, cunning, seductive and malicious, a creation by Morgoth out of fire and sorcery sometime in the First Age. Included species such as fire-drakes and cold-drakes.
  • Balrogs: Balrogath (“Balrog-kind”) were Maiar corrupted by Morgoth during the creation of Arda, who cloaked themselves in shadow and flame and carried whips and swords. Famed Balrogs include Gothmog, slain by Ecthelion, and Durin’s Bane, slain by Olórin (Gandalf).
  • Draugluin: The first werewolf. Bred from wolves and inhabited with an evil spirit sent by Morgoth himself, Draugluin was the sire of all Werewolves of Beleriand, and dwelled with his master Sauron in Tol-in-Gaurhoth, the former watchtower of Finrod Felagund. He was slain by Huan during the Quest for the Silmaril, though informed Sauron that Huan was present. Beren and Lúthien used his pelt to sneak into Angband
  • Giants, Goblins, Trolls: Twisted creatures, created by Morgoth.
  • Orcs: Orcs were the footsoldiers of evil overlords - Morgoth, Sauron and Saruman. Made in the mockery of elves sometime during the Great Darkness.
  • Ungoliant (and her children): Ungoliant was an evil spirit in a form that greatly resembled a massive Spider. Ungoliant’s origins are shrouded in mystery. It is thought that she may have been one of the Maiar, or a lesser spirit, whom Melkor corrupted long ago, but she is not listed among the Ainur. It is also said that she came from the darkness above the skies of Arda, leading some to believe that she may be an incarnation of darkness or emptiness itself.
  • Maeglin: Maeglin was an Elf, the son of Eöl the Dark Elf and Aredhel daughter of Fingolfin. He lived in the First Age of Middle-earth and was a lord of Gondolin, chief of the House of the Mole. Morgoth promised both Gondolin and Idril in return for the location of the hidden city, thus luring Maeglin into the greatest treachery done in the Elder Days. He gave him a token that would allegedly keep him safe from the sack.


Conclusion

  • If one thing could be noted is that Morgoth had a decent understanding of hierarchy. He expressed a remarkable ability within the Silmarillion to gain trust in those around him– something in which could be his greatest ability besides strength.

  • It could easily be said that Morgoth possessed greater servants than Sauron; seeing as many were of his own creations. He had the Balrogs under his authority, as well as dragons and being of unknown origins. He wasn’t suffering in terms of followers and it could even be said that he was a decent lord in terms of servitude.
  • While man suffered under his lash, the orcs were seen as masters in their own right. Maeglin was offered Gondolin upon it’s surrender and the hand of the woman he loved. Gothmog led armies; Glaurung, Ancalagon, and Carchathor were given life. Morgoth didn’t make empty promises– perhaps they weren’t always honest, but he was able to give individuals a purpose.
  • He didn’t abuse what trust was granted to him once he had what he desired and therefore possessed a rather impressive relationship with those who followed him. While some, such as Ungoliant, would come to betray him– such were few and far between, unlike Sauron whose servants often had their own ideas..


Sauron
Major Servants

  • Nazgûl: Known as the Nine Riders or Black Riders, were Sauron’s “most terrible servants” in Middle-earth. Sometime during the Second, Sauron gave nine Rings of Power to powerful mortal Men. It is said that three of the Nine were lords of Númenor corrupted by Sauron, and one was a king among the Easterlings
  • One-Ring: An artifact created by Sauron in the Second Age for the purpose of ruling over the Free peoples of Middle-earth, mainly the Elves. It was also known as the Ruling Ring, Great Ring of Power and Isildur’s Bane because it caused the death of Isildur.
  • Thuringwethil: Vampire servant of Sauron during the First Age. She was Sauron’s messenger, but was caught in the battle between her master, Lúthien and Huan at Tol-in-Gaurhoth (“Isle of Werewolves”). She was slain either by the Hound of Valinor or in the collapse of Minas Tirith. Lúthien later used her cloak to sneak into Angband during the Quest for the Silmaril. Because of Thuringwethil’s ability to change forms, she may have been a Maia
  • Witch-king: The Witch-king of Angmar was the chief of the Nazgûl, King of Angmar and Sauron’s great captain in his wars. A wraith, the Witch-king of Angmar was nearly indestructible, a terrifying warrior, and a cunning strategist.

  • Mouth of Sauron: Sauron’s servant and representative at the end of the Third Age. He had the title Lieutenant of Barad-dûr, since he was so strongly devoted to the Dark Lord. The Mouth of Sauron was one of the Black Númenóreans.
  • Saurman: Saruman the White was the first of the order of Wizards (or Istari) who came to Middle-earth as Emissaries of the Valar in the Third Age. He was the leader of the White Council. In Sindarin his name was Curunír, which meant “Man of Skill”. It soon became clear that Saruman desired to possess the One Ring himself.
  • Shelob: A great spider-like creature akin to those of Nan Dungortheb in Beleriand, the last offspring of the demonic Ungoliant. Shelob fed off with all living things, such as Elves and Men, but as these became scarce in the area, she fed upon orcs. Sauron would sometimes send her captured prisoners for whom he had no further use and amuse himself watching how she played with her prey.


Minor Servants

  • Ar-Pharazôn: Ar-Pharazôn the Golden was the twenty-fifth and last King of Númenor. He was the son of Gimilkhâd, who was the younger brother of the twenty-fourth King, Tar-Palantir. Ar-Pharazôn’s willful rule, and his great pride, led directly to the world-changing Downfall of Númenor and the founding of the realms in exile of Arnor and Gondor.
  • Fellbeasts: Winged creatures with beak and claws, similar to birds but much larger than any other flying beast. They were used as winged mounts of the Nazgûl
  • Giants, Goblins, Trolls: Twisted creatures, created by Morgoth.
  • Orcs: Orcs were the footsoldiers of evil overlords - Morgoth, Sauron and Saruman. Made in the mockery of elves sometime during the Great Darkness.
  • Smeagle/Golum: was a creature who bore the One Ring. He lived in the Misty Mountains for most of his life. In T.A. 2941, he lost the Ring to Bilbo Baggins. For the rest of his life he sought to recover his "precious”. Eventually he would come to seize the Ring from Frodo in Sammath Naur. In his euphoria he died and destroyed the Ring after falling into the cracks of Mount Doom.
  • Werewolves: Wolves, inhabited by dreadful spirits, they were created (or a least corrupted from some other form) by Sauron, who was their master, and who took the shape of a great wolf himself at least once.
  • Wargs: An evil breed of demonic wolves, suggesting that they were inhabited by evil spirits. The origin of the breed is unknown - perhaps they were among the creatures bred by Morgoth in the Elder Days. In any case, Gandalf listed the Wargs among Sauron’s servants in the late Third Age.
  • Vampire Bats: Vampires were mysterious bat-like creatures in the service of Morgoth and of Sauron. The only vampire whose name is recorded in the annals of Arda is Sauron’s servant Thuringwethil, but Sauron himself took the form of a vampire on at least one occasion, to flee Huan.
  • Flies: Tiresome, flying insects.


Conclusion

  • For an individual who was as persuasive and charismatic as he, it was almost more so beneficial to be an enemy of Sauron than among his servants, to which he arguably held a weak relationship with.
  • The orcs within the Lord of the Rings constantly confess to fearing him and seem almost bitter of their existence– often being fed to Shelob; who she herself remarked that Sauron believed her to be nothing more then a pet, in which he was gravely mistaken.
  • Saurman and Golum both expressed a willingness to betray Sauron as soon as they were able and the Nazgûl, his chief servants, were only obeying on the account that their fates were doomed to the One Ring.
  • Even Ar-Pharazôn humored Sauron in a mere attempt for immortality and therefore many trusted little in the Dark Lord himself.
  • One could then argue is that Sauron’s greatest servant was the One Ring, which in reality, was him. Which– if one were familiar with the characteristic of Sauron, would be of no surprise that he trusted himself first and foremost.
  • Therefore Sauron was ignorant in the needs and desires of those in servitude to him and perhaps that was why he favored the more animalistic creatures in his service. Something to which couldn’t and wouldn’t doubt him.


Overall Conclusion

  • Both possessed a various assortment of powerful individuals under their authority. However, Morgoth expressed a more natural ability to lead and keep those beneath his authority, sedated. Sauron was perfect at manipulating those around him, but could not establish a relationship as seemed almost natural to Morgoth. Besides, Morgoth even had the undying loyalty of Sauron, who trusted himself most of all. If he could seduce a maiar such as he, then that speaks levels to Morgoth’s influence in those who listened.
Sauron’s Name in Numenor

Coda to this post. Canonically, Tar-Mairon is the title Sauron used in Númenor, which means ‘King Excellent’ in Quenya. 

But speaking elven languages, like Quenya, was against the law; the majority of the Númenóreans were strongly anti-elvish, and Sauron hated the elves, so why would he use a title in Quenya? 

Maybe Ar-Pharazôn gave his adviser a special exception, but I think it’s more likely that Sauron actually used an Adûnaic translation of his name.

So what was his name then?

We know that Tar- becomes Ar- in Adûnaic, but we have no translation for the second word.

Sauron’s original name was Mairon, from Q maira “admirable, excellent, precious, splendid, sublime”.

Adûnaic simplifies ai into long ê, giving us the loan word mêra

If we add the adjective ending -ôn, we get the noun mêraôn, “admirable one,” similar to pharazôn “golden one.” But I’m doubtful this an acceptable or pronounceable vowel cluster in Adûnaic.

We could alter it by dropping the first vowel to form Mêrôn. Or we could add a glide consonant y to make Mêrayôn, like in the word Avalôiyada.

So possible Adûnaic names for Sauron are Ar-Mêrônand Ar-Mêrayôn.

anonymous asked:

So what exactly is your project about, specifically?

I will be posting excerpts from my thesis here on tumblr! I should have the first of my four major points from my essay up on my blog today :) but primarily my project was to see if I could make an estimate as to whether or not Morgoth or Sauron came closer to achieving their goals as dark lords then the other.

Something I’ve been mulling over is First Wizarding War timeline. I find the wiki timeline somewhat off in terms of Voldemort’s rise to power, so I put this together for my own reference. It’s by no means comprehensive, but gives a rough idea in terms of timeline and how bad things were and I’m posting it in case anyone else is interested. This is how I write my personal timelines, I’m sorry.

1945 – Tom Marvelous Riddle graduates from Hogwarts.  He is stunning on the outside, a fabulous painted Easter egg. He’s charming, handsome, smart, and has a little gang of angsty, goth, dark glamour nerd followers. On the inside, he’s what Dumbledore suspected: rotten and stinky. He’s already opened the Chamber, killed Myrtle and framed Hagrid. He paid a little visit to kill off daddy dearest and his grandparents. He knows about Horcruxes because Sluggy dropped the ball and was an idiot. He applies to Hogwarts for the first time but is rejected; he rejects Slughorn’s offers to help him land a Ministry job; and goes to work at Borgin and Burkes.

1946ish - He flirts/schmoozes Ms. Smith, goes all Gollum/my precious and kills her, frames her poor old house elf, steals the cup and locket, and skips town whistling.

Late 1940s, Early 1950s – Vague, vague, very vague: Albania, dark magic, coming up with an evil bad guy sketchbook, working out anagrams for Tom Marvolo Riddle.

1956-1957 – Jazz hands! I’m back, England, and I’m Voldemort now, bitches. LORD VOLDEMORT. He comes to Hogwarts 10 years after Hokey’s memory. He’s at Hogwarts to apply for the Defense position and also to hide his tiara. Here, his appearance is markedly different. He’s not quite skin crawling, but you do a double take and his voice is chalk on the board. He’s going by Lord Voldemort now. Rumors of his doings have already reached Dumbledore, who is disappointed and angry. His followers-the old school crowed-are known as Death Eaters, but they aren’t notorious yet. These things are largely unsubstantiated, rumors, but they do exist and are known.

1950s-1970ish –The rise of Voldemort: bad guy building an army Disney montage.  He’s still flapping around and continuing to research his dark arts. He’s getting fuglier. He’s splitting his soul and making horcruxes. He’s also working hard to incite fear and amass an army. He’s collecting followers, gaining support, negotiating with werewolves, giants, etc. Vry vry busy.

1970-1981 – The Wizarding War is in full force. Dumbledore says in the first chapter that there’s been precious little to celebrate for eleven years, he says that twice, just for emphasis.  Voldemort is actively at war with the Wizarding World and vice versa.  This, ironically, marks the entirety of Lily’s time in the Wizarding World (cue sobs).   It’s not like things ramped up in James and Lily’s 7th year; it’s maybe that they just became more aware of the goings on. JK tells us that the FWW, while longer than the SWW, wasn’t as bad, largely because the Ministry hadn’t been overtaken and Voldemort couldn’t radically infiltrate and control the entire society the way he did during the second war. But it wasn’t a frolic in a field of daisies, obviously, because the bastard used werewolves, inferi, giants, and all manner of dark creatures. He used the Imperius on Ministry officials, half of Diagon Alley was shut down, the Ministry issued worthless “safety” pamphlets, and the Prophet was spewing misinformation or no information at all. Things were basically a gigantic cluster. No one knew who was on what side, all vry confusing. People were terrified for their lives and their family’s lives. The Ministry was more fucked than usual, which is saying something. Muggles are dying. Like people disappearing and being tortured left and right. Dark marks over houses. Terror. Panic. Confusion. Other negative descriptors. Bad shit, ok?

1978 – MWPP/Jily  joins the Order. I think it’s fair to say that the Order has been in existence for some time and they are some of the youngest members.

Late 1979/1980 – the Prophecy is made and Snape is like OMG master what I heard and Voldemort was like say what? and the Potters went into hiding. Harry is born! Maybe the giants fall. Crouch lets Aurors use the Unforgivables.

1981 – The Order is systematically dismantled based on information from Peter the spy. Voldemort announces the prophecy, it’s the POTTERS. Snape goes OH HELL and tries to backtrack but too late. Harry doesn’t die but his parents die trying to protect him. The Wizarding World is like really? Then it’s over now? Partay! (Sorry Potters.) They build a statue. Sirius goes to Prison. Peter becomes a rat. Voldemort pulls a Dark Lord Sauron and skedaddles the hell out of dodge. Death Eaters torture Fralice, the other tragic OTP, people are SUPER outraged. Man (so many) Death Eaters go to prison. The rest call cursed! and move on with their lives.

So that was a mess but that’s the First Wizarding World according to Lindsey.

anonymous asked:

hey! i've been looking to get into lotr, but i just wanted to know a few things before diving in! Do you find it a hard or slow read? What are all the books I should read to get the full experience? And at what age did you read them?

Hey! :) I’m so glad you want to start reading Tolkien’s books. It’s an excellent decision. (I mean, there’ll be a lot tears, frustration, tears, taking pages and pages of notes at first because of the complexity of his lore and family trees, and tears. But still, a wonderful decision.)

I’ve read The Lord of the Rings when I was eleven, and the rest of the books followed. This is the order in which I’ve read Tolkien’s books: The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, The Silmarillion, The Unfinished Tales, The History of Middle-Earth, The Children of Húrin, The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien and The Adventures of Tom Bombadil. I’m not saying this is the “correct” order or anything (there’s no such thing) but it worked out well for me. Don’t ask for a “chronological order” or anything, because in many of these books, the Ages and timelines overlap so there’s no way to establish a 100% accurate chronological order.

A lot of people find Tolkien’s language quite difficult to read at first. But I’ve always found that the real challenge was keeping all the names straight and remembering all the complex lore he wrote. Is his language more formal and old-fashioned than most books we read today? Yes. But honestly, his stories are so captivating that I quickly got over the initial frustration about the language. It’s purely up to the reader. I know a few people who got turned off by the language and stopped reading Tolkien, but most readers agree with me about this.

What are all the books you should read to get the full experience? I would say all of them, but The Adventures of Tom Bombadil especially is kind of debatable.

Now I’m going to give you an extensive review for each book. You can’t tell by my blog since I mostly post gifs here, but in real life, when someone asks me a Tolkien question, I can’t stop talking for hours. I physically can’t stop. You asked for this.

Keep reading

Someone once asked me to do an evolution of Mairon, and while I cannot yet incorporate Annatar and Post!Ñumenor Sauron (as they are still underdevelopment), I can express the concepts I currently have.


Mairon (pre!seduction) is best renowned for his incorporation of the hijab, or headscarf. Such is meant to represent humility, chastity and submission to that of Aulë. With the fabric keeping his hair out of his face, such confesses the more practical nature of his earlier character, who was no doubt more focused upon others and his craft then that of himself as he later came to be.

Gorthaur (First Age) expresses a dramatic change in appearance, within reason. With the hair now exposed and incorporating a less sensible presence of jewelry, such is supposed to stress the sudden self entitlement Mairon possessed under Melkor. He redeems a more outspoken and self confident domineer, such no doubt in response to his position of authority.

Sauron (Second Age) After the fall of Melkor, Mairon opts to exchange his extravagent hair for a sudden shortened trim. Such is to represent a concept of ‘rebirth’, for no longer is he a servant but now a master. Sauron proceeds with his quest to become the Dark Lord, under no banner but his own, evading Ëonwë and beginning his schemes of creating the one-ring.

Tar-Mairon (Ńumenor) once more returns to us, the infamous headscarf. But no longer is this a symbolism of modesty but worn more as a turban, a symbolism of self worth. By hiding his features, Mairon does not express chastity, but more so pride, deeming himself unworthy for mortal eyes. The disguising of the face also allows him a mastery over mortal man, who cannot rely on reading his emotions through an expressive mannerism.

Comparing LotR and Star Wars
  • The first trilogy was really amazing, but the second trilogy relied a lot more on special effects and the tone was never really as solid as the first. 
  • Bad guy was seduced to the dark side by a more powerful villain
  • How does the magic…work…exactly?
  • Main hero born in a place no one’s really heard of
  • My hand/finger got cut off!
  • White haired sage sees the hero through the beginning of a journey, then dies, then sorta comes back
  • First trilogy is lacking in black people, which they try to make up for the second trilogy

In order to kiss my freedom goodbye properly end this small vacation, I attempted a battle scene with your favorite dark lords. Which one? Erm… randomly open the Silmarillion at some chapter it’s probably there. Now, while Melkor seems to enjoy this new change of scene, Sauron appears less than pleased with all the fighting and all the dirt and all that battle means. Sorry Skippy, better luck next time.

Also, first attempt at armor. Ended up less dark and more viking than originally intended… well, I’m learning as I go.

anonymous asked:

So I was reading the Tale of Adanel, and it seems like Melkor not only goes to the first humans in a 'fair form', but can shapeshift into fire and smoke as well. But this is after he comes back from Valinor and is supposedly stuck in his 'dark lord' form. Is there a way of reconciling the two discrepancies?

Andreth believes that the Tale of Adanel tells of the meeting of Men with Melkor; that’s how she recounts it. But I have this slightly heretical theory that the evil being who Men meet in the Tale is actually not Melkor, but Sauron. Here’s the relevant bit:

Then one appeared among us, in our own form visible, but greater and more beautiful; and he said that he had come out of pity. ‘Ye should not have been left alone and uninstructed,’ he said. ‘The world is full of marvellous riches which knowledge can unlock. Ye could have food more abundant and moredelicious than the poor things that ye now eat. Ye could havedwellings of ease, in which ye could keep light and shut out the night. Ye could be clad even as I.’
Then we looked and lo! he was clad in raiment that shone like silver and gold, and he had a crown on his head, and gems in his hair. ‘If ye wish to be like me,’ he said, ‘I will teach you.’ Then we took him as teacher.
He was less swift than we had hoped to teach us how to find, or to make for ourselves, the things that we desired, though he had awakened many desires in our hearts. But if any doubted or were impatient, he would bring and set before us all that we wished for. ‘I am the Giver of Gifts,’ he said; ‘and the gifts shall never fail as long as ye trust me.’

Keep reading

An Addendum to Euron the Dark Lord

Our first essay naturally focused on what Euron’s dark lord status implied for the story going forward. Yet in doing so we completely overlooked the significance of Euron’s late entrance into the story and how this subverts the dark lord’s traditional role as keystone antagonist.

The sheer importance of this subversion came to us while we were contemplating an utterly hilarious yet completely on the nose bit of commentary by PoorQuentyn:

I always wondered how much of the widespread dislike of these two intertwined books stemmed from how fucking arrogant some of these new plotlines are. Euron shows up four books in and all but says out loud “Why hello readers, I’m the villain! Sorry I’m late, but check out my eyepatch!”

He’s right. Euron’s storyline is breathtakingly arrogant and completely out of left field. Such a late entrance for one of the story’s main villains, and a surprise entrance at that, is just not how things are supposed to be done. We believe this is completely by design because The Song of Ice and Fire is a story where the standard fantasy dark lord is not essential and plays no role in the conflict’s beginning or end. Rather ASoIaF is a story where an inessential dark lord shows up halfway through in order to deconstruct fantasy narratives wherein black and white conflicts are brought about by the sheer power and ill will of uniquely evil beings.

Let’s compare ASoIaF to two fantasy series of similar cultural impact: the Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter. In Tolkien, the War of the Ring’s origins lay in the dark lord Sauron’s forging of the One Ring in the year 1600 of the Second Age. The next 4861 years were defined by the struggle between Sauron and the Free Peoples of Middle Earth, of which the Trilogy is merely the final playing out, a last gasp amidst the dark and crumbling world that Sauron’s wars and sorceries have made. Sauron might not put in a physical appearance, but his presence is strongly conveyed from afar. With the Harry Potter series, the entire conflict predates Harry’s existence and is merely starting up again. The books center on the protagonists’ heroic efforts to thwart the dark lord Voldemort’s attempts to return to the world of the living, wreak revenge upon his many enemies, and take over the Wizarding world. Voldemort is physically present from the first book on. At first he is a weak and ghostly figure, but as the story progresses he becomes ever more formidable, corporeal, and inescapable (Harry gets thrown into Voldemort’s head and the dark lord’s childhood and prechildhood are intensely analyzed). Remove either dark lord and you don’t have a story, period. Of course this setup is not present in every fantasy story, but it is still pretty common.

GRRM’s dark lord on the other hand has absolutely no role in starting the series’ central conflicts. The War of Five Kings is brought about by Queen Cersei’s treason with her brother Jaime and the respective decisions of Varys, Littlefinger, and Renly to conceal and exploit this treason for their own ends. Meanwhile, Beyond-the-Wall, the Others begin their steady advance, the Last Greenseer makes one last desperate attempt at recruiting a suitable replacement, and the Wildling’s millennium of conflict with the Nights Watch finally comes to a head as they desperately try to escape to safety. Finally, in Middle Essos the last intrigues of Robert’s Rebellion intersect with Dothraki imperialism, post-Valyrian slavery, Lhazareen resistance, and blood sorcery to bring about the rebirth of dragons. The ultimate results are war across the South, war in the North, and war in Middle Essos. As these conflicts intensify they expose unhealed wounds (such as Elia Martell’s murder) and create brand new ones (such as the Sand Snakes demands for vengeance and the many vendettas of the Riverlands, from the Brotherhood to the Sparrow movement), making it difficult, if not impossible, to bring a satisfactory end to the violence.

Now, while all these complex events were unfolding, what was Euron up to? Well, he’s not even mentioned in A Game of Thrones and all A Clash of Kings does is highlight his absence from the Iron Isles. It’s eventually established in Feast-Dance that, during the events of the first two books, Euron was busy being a completely irrelevant pirate somewhere in the Summer or Jade Sea, vainly trying to hatch a stolen dragon’s egg. A Song of Ice and Fire begins without Euron, and so the best he can do is dramatically insert himself into the story halfway through (essentially trying to steal the story just as he’s trying to steal Dany’s dragons).

And even this entrance would have been impossible if not for the setup provided by more central characters. Euron’s role and actions are fundamentally reactive. He needed the death and chaos of the War of Five Kings so that Westeros would be vulnerable. He needed for Daenerys to hatch her dragon eggs on the Great Grass Sea. He needed the Qartheen Warlocks to try and murder her, fail at the cost of their House, and then embark on a quest for revenge that leads them right into Euron’s hands. Euron is a black swan made possible by the sum total of other people’s decisions, he is an unexpected consequence of war and sorcery that expands, prolongs, and worsens the worldwide conflagration.

Let us imagine Euron just before he captured the four warlocks and learned about Daenerys. Throughout his early life he’d had unexplained dreams, visions, and powers that had set him apart from most men and filled him with great expectations. All his life he had secretly pursued the power promised in these dreams, pursued power into the lands of the mysterious East and into the minds of vulnerable human beings. And yet all this questing and ambition had amounted to nothing more than a life of small-time piracy along the main commercial arteries of the Summer and Jade Seas. True, Euron had had some very profitable adventures and done more damage than the captain of a single longship had any right to do. There had been a lot of opportunity for someone like him, what with the Golden Empire disintegrating and the Qartheen turning a blind eye to attacks on their competitors’ shipping (occasionally even preying upon it themselves). He ruled supreme over his cowed slave crew and had even captured one of the world’s few remaining dragon eggs (rarer than Valyrian steel — had any other Ironborn ever managed such a feat?). But none of this was enough to truly satisfy him.

Euron had always believed he was destined for far greater things than mere plunder and sadism (however enjoyable these were in their own right). But it didn’t feel like he had much of a destiny now. The best he could hope for was to one day return home and murder his way to the Seastone Chair… and then what? Become the lord of a bunch of little islands, with all their little hopes and tedious disputes, bending his knee to some far off king lest he be crushed by the mainland’s overwhelming might? Or lead an unsuccessful rebellion and become another Dagon or Balon Greyjoy? What kind of destiny was that? He wanted to plunder whole countries, not merely a bunch of unlucky merchants and coastal towns; he wanted to lord over a vast slave empire worthy of an Eastern potentate, not merely the broken crew held in thrall aboard his ship. And he wanted to work great feats of magic, the magic that had been practiced in Valyrian history and Westerosi legend, and the magic that he had seen or heard about in Asshai: dark magic, blood magic, shadow magic, ice and fire magic. But he was nowhere close to doing any of that.

What Euron needed was a dragon. If he could just hatch a dragon then no one would be able withstand him, just as no one had withstood the Valyrians. With a dragon he would be able to fly far higher than he had ever flown before and all his pretensions and dreams would be made real. So he sat on his boat, sweating under the tropical sun, hoping against hope that that Myrish fire mage might actually hatch his plundered dragon egg, and all the while his thoughts smoldered with the stories of Valyria and the failed Targaryen attempts. He was going nowhere and he probably knew it. The only question was the manner in which Euron would brutally kill the fire mage when he inevitably failed. Then, as if some dark god were answering the prayers Euron had never made, the sails of a certain Qartheen galas appeared upon the horizon…

Melkor was made in the beginning, before the world was made solvent, as the first Ainu created by Eru Iluvatar in the Timeless Halls, at the beginning of creation. Manwë is said to be brother to him, yet Melkor was greater in power than any of the Ainur. Melkor was gifted also with the greatest knowledge of all the Ainur, and had share in all of the gifts given to his fellow Ainur by Eru.

Melkor, later called Morgoth, was the first Dark Lord and master of Sauron. Originally the most powerful of the Ainur created by Eru Iluvatar, Melkor rebelled against his creator because of pride and sought to corrupt Arda, becoming Morgoth. After committing many evils in the First Age, such as the theft of the Silmarils and the destruction of the Two Lamps, Morgoth was defeated by the Host of Valinor in the War of Wrath.