- Mar 16, 2002
- Reaction score
2. Was the ban of the Noldor lifted when she passed the "test of the ring" or when Sauron was destroyed?An Elf who had once known Middle-earth and had fought in the long wars against Melkor would be an eminently suitable companion for Gandalf. We could then reasonably suppose that Glorfindel (possibly as one of a small party,(1) more probably as a sole companion) landed with Gandalf - Olorin about Third Age 1000. This supposition would indeed explain the air of special power and sanctity that surrounds Glorfindel - note how the Witch-king flies from him, although all others (such as King Earnur) however brave could not induce their horses to face him (Appendix A (I, iv), RK p. 331). For according to accounts (quite independent of this case) elsewhere given of Elvish nature, and their relations with the Valar, when Glorfindel was slain his spirit would then go to Mandos and be judged, and then would remain in the Halls of Waiting until Manwe granted him release. The Elves were destined to be by nature 'immortal', within the unknown limits of the life of the Earth as a habitable realm, and their disembodiment was a grievous thing. It was the duty, therefore, of the Valar to restore them, if they were slain, to incarnate life, if they desired it - unless for some grave (and rare) reason: such as deeds of great evil, or any works of malice of which they remained obdurately unrepentant. When they were re-embodied they could remain in Valinor, or return to Middle-earth if their home had been there. We can therefore reasonably suppose that Glorfindel, after the purging or forgiveness of his part in the rebellion of the Noldor, was released from Mandos and became himself again, but remained in the Blessed Realm - for Gondolin was destroyed and all or most of his kin had perished. We can thus understand why he seems so powerful a figure and almost 'angelic'. For he had returned to the primitive innocence of the First-born, and had then lived among those Elves who had never rebelled, and in the companionship of the Maiar (2) for ages: from the last years of the First Age, through the Second Age, to the end of the first millennium of the Third Age: before he returned to Middle-earth.(3) It is indeed probable that he had in Valinor already become a friend and follower of Olorin. Even in the brief glimpses of him given in The Lord of the Rings he appears as specially concerned for Gandalf, and was one (the most powerful, it would seem) of those sent out from Rivendell when the disquieting news reached Elrond that Gandalf had never reappeared to guide or protect the Ring-bearer.
This is an 'authorized' version in my opinion -- one that Tolkien published while he was alive. Celeborn is here (same source) said to be one of the Sindar (as opposed to a Teler of Aman). Tolkien had also published that Celeborn was one of the Sindar in the first edition of The Lord of the Rings.'She [Galadriel] was the last survivor of the princes and queens who had led the revolting Noldor to exile in Middle-earth. After the overthrow of Morgoth at the end of the First Age a ban was set upon her return, and she had replied proudly that she had no wish to do so (...) In the event, after the fall of Sauron, in reward for all that she had done to oppose him, but above all for her rejection of the Ring when it came within her power, the ban was lifted, and she returned over the Sea, as is told at the end of The Lord of the Rings.' The Road Goes Ever On