J.R.R. Tolkien

J.R.R. Tolkien

Legolas Hobbits Boromir
Gimli Galadriel Bilbo
Aragorn Gandalf Gimli and Legolas

Antique illustrations put to a beautiful
recitation of 'Night Before Christmas'

'Do you hear the voice of Nimrodel?' asked Legolas. 'I will sing you a song of the maiden Nimrodel, who bore the same name as the stream beside which she lived long ago. It is a fair song in our woodland tongue; but this is how it runs in the Western Speech, as some in Rivendell now sing it.' In a soft voice hardly to be heard amid the rustle of the leaves above them he began:

An Elven-maid there was of old,
emptyA shining star by day:
Her mantle white was hemmed with gold,
emptyHer shoes of silver-grey.

A star was bound upon her brows,
emptyA light was on her hair
As sun upon the golden boughs
emptyIn Lorien the fair.

Her hair was long, her limbs were white,
emptyAnd fair she was and free;
And in the wind she went as light
emptyAs leaf of linden-tree.

Beside the falls of Nimrodel,
emptyBy water clear and cool,
Her voice as falling silver fell
emptyInto the shining pool.

Where now she wanders none can tell,
emptyIn sunlight or in shade;
For lost of yore was Nimrodel
emptyAnd in the mountains strayed.

The elven-ship in haven grey
emptyBeneath the mountain-lee
Awaited her for many a day
emptyBeside the roaring sea.

A wind by night in Northern lands
emptyArose, and loud it cried,
And drove the ship from elven-strands
emptyAcross the streaming tide.

When dawn came dim the land was lost,
emptyThe mountains sinking grey
Beyond the heaving waves that tossed
emptyTheir plumes of blinding spray.

Amroth beheld the fading shore
emptyNow low beyond the swell,
And cursed the faithless ship that bore
emptyHim far from Nimrodel.

Of old he was an Elven-king,
emptyA lord of tree and glen,
When golden were the boughs in spring
emptyIn fair Lothlorien.

From helm to sea they saw him leap,
emptyAs arrow from the string,
And dive into the water deep,
emptyAs mew upon the wing.

The wind was in his flowing hair,
emptyThe foam about him shone;
Afar they saw him strong and fair
emptyGo riding like a swan.

But from the West has come no word,
emptyAnd on the Hither Shore
No tidings Elven-folk have heard
emptyOf Amroth evermore.

The voice of Legolas faltered, and the song ceased. 'I cannot sing any more,' he said. 'That is but a part, for I have forgotten much. It is long and sad, for it tells how sorrow came upon Lothlorien, Lorien of the Blossom, when the Dwarves awakened evil in the mountains.'

'But the Dwarves did not make the evil,' said Gimli.

'I said not so; yet evil came,' answered Legolas sadly.

Gimli, son of Gloin
'These are not holes,' said Gimli. 'This is the great realm and city of the Dwarrowdelf. And of old it was not darksome, but full of light and splendour, as is still remembered in our songs.'

He rose and standing in the dark he began to chant in a deep voice, while the echoes ran away into the roof.

The world was young, the mountains green,
No stain yet on the Moon was seen,
No words were laid on stream or stone
When Durin woke and walked alone.

He named the nameless hills and dells;
He drank from yet untasted wells;
He stooped and looked in Mirrormere,
And saw a crown of stars appear,
As gems upon a silver thread,
Above the shadow of his head.

The world was fair, the mountains tall,
In Elder Days before the fall
Of mighty kings in Nargothrond
And Gondolin, who now beyond
The Western Seas have passed away:
The world was fair in Durin's Day.

A king he was on carven throne
In many-pillared halls of stone
With golden roof and silver floor,
And runes of power upon the door.
The light of sun and star and moon
In shining lamps of crystal hewn
Undimmed by cloud or shade of night
There shone for ever fair and bright.

There hammer on the anvil smote,
There chisel clove, and graver wrote;
There forged was blade, and bound was hilt;
The delver mined, the mason built.
There beryl, pearl, and opal pale,
And metal wrought like fishes' mail,
Buckler and corslet, axe and sword,
And shining spears were laid in hoard.

Unwearied then were Durin's folk;
Beneath the mountains music woke:
The harpers harped, the minstrels sang,
And at the gates the trumpets rang.

The world is grey, the mountains old,
The forge's fire is ashen-cold;
No harp is wrung, no hammer falls;
The darkness dwells in Durin's halls;

The shadow lies upon his tomb
In Moria, in Khazad-dum.
But still the sunken stars appear
In dark and windless Mirrormere;
There lies his crown in water deep,
Till Durin wakes again from sleep.

Aragorn/Strider/King Elessar

Make sure that it is the real Strider. There are many strange men on the roads.
His true name is Aragorn.

All that is gold does not glitter,
emptyNot all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
emptyDeep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
emptyA light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
emptyThe crownless again shall be king.

Gondor! Gondor, between the Mountains and the Sea!
West Wind blew there; the light upon the Silver Tree
Fell like bright rain in gardens of the Kings of old.
O proud walls! White towers! O winged crown and throne of gold!
O Gondor, Gondor! Shall Men behold the Silver Tree,
Or West Wind blow again between the Mountains and the Sea?

Frodo Baggins, Sam, Merry, Pippin

Farewell we call to hearth and hall!
Though wind may blow and rain may fall,
We must away ere break of day
Far over wood and mountain tall.

To Rivendell, where Elves yet dwell
In glades beneath the misty fell,
Through moore and waste we ride in haste,
And whither then we cannot tell.

With foes ahead, behind us dread,
Beneath the sky shall be our bed,
Until at last our toil be passed,
Our journey done, our errand sped.

We must away! We must away!
We ride before the break of day!

Galadriel, the Lady of the Woods
In the midst of the vessel sat Celeborn, and behind him stood Galadriel, tall and white; a circlet of golden flowers was in her hair, and in her hand she held a harp, and she sang. Sad and sweet was the sound of her voice in the cool clear air:

I sang of leaves, of leaves of gold,
emptyand leaves of gold there grew:
Of wind I sang, a wind there came
emptyand in the branches blew.
Beyond the Sun, beyond the Moon,
emptythe foam was on the Sea,
And by the strand of Ilmarin
emptythere grew a golden Tree.
Beneath the stars of Ever-eve
emptyin Eldamar it shone,
In Eldamar beside the walls
emptyof Elven Tirion.
There long the golden leaves have grown
emptyupon the branching years,
While here beyond the Sundering Seas
emptynow fall the Elven-tears.
O Lorien! The Winter comes,
emptythe bare and leafless Day;
The leaves are falling in the stream,
emptythe River flows away.
O Lorien! Too long I have dwelt
emptyupon this Hither Shore
And in a fading crown have twined
emptythe golden elanor.
But if of ships I now should sing,
emptywhat ship would come to me,
What ship would bear me ever back
emptyacross so wide a Sea?

Gandalf the Grey and the White/Mithrandir
It was Frodo who first put something of his sorrow into halting words. He was seldom moved to make song or rhyme; even in Rivendell he had listened and had not sung himself, though his memory was stored with many things that others had made before him. But now as he sat beside the fountain in Lorien and heard about him the voices of the Elves, his thought took shape in a song that seemed fair to him; yet when he tried to repeat it to Sam only snatches remained, faded as a handful of withered leaves

When evening in the Shire was grey
his footsteps on the Hill were heard;
before the dawn he went away
on journey long without a word.

From Wilderland to Western shore,
from northern waste to southern hill,
through dragon-lair and hidden door
and darling woods he walked at will.

With Dwarf and Hobbit, Elves and Men,
with mortal and immortal folk,
with bird on bough and beast in den,
in their own secret tongues he spoke.

A deadly sword, a healing hand,
a back that bent beneath its load;
a trumpet-voice, a burning brand,
a weary pilgrim on the road.

A lord of wisdom throned he sat,
swift in anger, quick to laugh;
an old man in a battered hat
who leaned upon a thorny staff.

He stood upon the bridge alone
and Fire and Shadow both defied;
his staff was broken on the stone,
in Khazad-dum his wisdom died.


Through Rohan over fen and field
emptywhere the long grass grows
The West Wind comes walking,
emptyand about the walls it goes.
'What news from the West,
emptyO wandering wind,
emptydo you bring to me tonight?
Have you seen Boromir the Tall
emptyby moon or by starlight?'
'I saw him ride over seven streams,
emptyover waters wide and grey;
I saw him walk in empty lands,
emptyuntil he passed away
Into the shadows of the North.
emptyI saw him then no more.
The North Wind may have heard
emptythe horn of the son of Denethor.'
'O Boromir! From the high walls westward
emptyI looked afar,
But you came not from the empty lands
emptywhere no men are.'
From the mouths of the Sea
emptythe South Wind flies,
emptyfrom the sandhills and the stones;
The wailing of the gulls it bears,
emptyand at the gate it moans.
'What news from the South, O sighing wind,
emptydo you bring to me at eve?
Where now is Boromir the Fair?
emptyHe tarries and I grieve.'
'Ask not of me where he doth dwell --
emptyso many bones there lie
On the white shores and the dark shores
emptyUnder the stormy sky;
So many have passed down Anduin
emptyto find the flowing Sea.
Ask of the North Wind news of them
emptythe North Wind sends to me!'
'O Boromir! Beyond the gate
emptythe seaward road runs south,
But you came not with the wailing gulls
emptyfrom the grey sea's mouth.'
From the Gate of Kings the North Wind rides, and past the roaring falls;
And clear and cold about the tower its loud horn calls.
'What news from the North, O mighty wind, do you bring to me today?
What news of Boromir the Bold? For he is long away.'
'Beneath Amon Hen I heard his cry. There many foes he fought.
His cloven shield, his broken sword, they to the water brought.
His head so proud, his face so fair, his limbs they laid to rest;
And Rauros, golden Rauros-falls, bore him upon its breast.'
'O Boromir! The Tower of Guard shall ever northward gaze
To Rauros, golden Rauros-falls, until the end of days.'

Bilbo Baggins

The fire's very cosy here, and the food's very good, and there are Elves when you want them. What more could one want?

The Road goes ever on and on
Out from the door where it began,
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
Let others follow it who can!
Let them a journey new begin,
But I at last with weary feet
Will turn towards the lighted inn,
My evening-rest and sleep to meet.'

Gimli and Legolas

Gimli Gloin's son is renowned, for he was one of the Nine Walkers that set out with the Ring; and he remained in the company of King Elessar throughout the War. He was named Elf-friend because of the great love that grew between him and Legolas, son of King Thranduil, and because of his reverence for the Lady Galadriel.

After the fall of Sauron, Gimli brought south a part of the Dwarf-folk of Erebor, and he became Lord of the Glittering Caves. He and his people did great works in Gondor and Rohan. For Minas Tirith they forged gates of mithril and steel to replace those broken by the Witch-king. Legolas his friend also brought south Elves out of Greenwood, and they dwelt in Ithilien, and it became once again the fairest country in all the westlands.

Here follows one of the last notes in the Red Book

We have heard tell that Legolas took Gimli Gloin's son with him because of their great friendship, greater than any that has been between Elf and Dwarf. If this is true, then it is strange indeed: that a Dwarf should be willing to leave Middle-earth for any love, or that the Eldar should receive him, or that the Lords of the West should permit it. But it is said that Gimli went also out of desire to see again the beauty of Galadriel; and it may be that she, being mighty among the Eldar, obtained this grace for him. More cannot be said of this matter.

To the Sea, to the Sea! The white gulls are crying,
The wind is blowing, and the white foam is flying.
West, west away, the round sun is falling.
Grey ship, grey ship, do you hear them calling,
The voices of my people that have gone before me?
I will leave, I will leave the woods that bore me;
For our days are ending and our years failing.
I will pass the wide waters lonely sailing.
Long are the waves on the Last Shore falling,
Sweet are the voices in the Lost Isle calling,
In Eressea, in Elvenhome that no man can discover,
Where the leaves fall not: land of my people for ever!


Gimli and Legolas

Lord of the Ring

The Hobbit ebook
Fellowship of the Ring ebook
Two Towers ebook
Return of the King ebook
Lord of the Rings Appendices ebook
Tolkien Quiz
You and Tolkien Quiz
The White Council Message Board
What Tolkien Officially Said About Elf Sex

Favorite Poets
Favorite Poets

Governor Morris
NJ Governor
Lewis Morris


Henry Livingston
Night Before Xmas
Henry Livingston

Lincoln Trial
Judge Advocate
Henry L. Burnett

Van Deusen

Van Deusen


site map
Site Map

IME logo Copyright © 2003, Mary S. Van Deusen