Tolkien Tuesday: The Unfinished Tales~ Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin

“Through the darkness one may come to the light.”

The Unfinished Tales

Welcome to the beginning of our journey through The Unfinished Tales. These are a collection of stories that Tolkien never finished. However, his son, Christopher Tolkien was able to edit and publish these works. You may recognize some of the stories from The Silmarillion, although most of them go into a little more depth and we get to see some new faces to a tale we are already familiar with.

So today, we are greeted by a familiar face…Tuor. He is the son of Rian and Huor. Rian leaves Tuor with the Grey Elves to be fostered after she learned of the death of Huor. This is where we meet Annael. In Quenya, the portion of anna means gift and that is exactly what Annael is to Tuor. He becomes his foster-father and helps raise him into the man he is destined to become.

When Tuor is 16, they are attacked. The people he has known all his life are scattered and he is taken prisoner by The Easterlings for three years. This group of Easterlings is led by Lorgan and they serve Morgoth but not out of loyalty but out of fear.

“Hard and bitter then was his life; for it pleased Lorgan to treat Tuor the more evilly as he was of the kin of the former lords, and he sought to break, if he could, the pride of the House of Hador. But Tuor saw wisdom, and endured all the pains and taunts with watchful patience.”

The Unfinished Tales

Years pass and Tuor escapes and lives as an outlaw. At this point, he meets Gelmir and Arminas who try to help him find the Gate of the Noldor. I love the mention of the Feanorian Lamps. They are lights that cannot be extinguished. This light is actually of Valinor and mentioned very subtly throughout Tolkien’s works. Now, back to Tuor. He is approached by Ulmo and Ulmo is one of the Valar and the Lord of the Waters. As I discussed when we went through The Silmarillion. The Valar get inspiration from the Norse and Greek myths. Ulmo wants Tuor to relay a message to Turgon and provides a guide named Voronwe. The rest of the story goes through their journey through the 7 Gates of the Noldor but there is one quote that always stands out to me:

“None were there to see him, as he gazed Westward, gleaming in the silver and gold, and he knew not that in that hour he appeared as one of the mighty of the West, and hit to be the Father of the Kings of the Kings of Men beyond the sea…”

The Unfinished Tales

His journey is difficult and it will be difficult still, but in this moment his destiny is plain. He will be the Father of Kings. His descendants will be the Kings of Numenor.

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