I: The Book of Lost Tales part 1, IX: THE HIDING OF VALINOR

This chapter deals with three main themes: The Hiding and protection of Valinor, The Passages of the Sun and Moon, and finally, The Weaving of Days, Months and Years. These three tales are told by Vairë to Eriol and the other who listen.

Since the Flight of the Noldoli and the evil deeds of Melko, an uneasiness and bitterness had been growing among the Valar and the remaining Eldar in Valinor. Manwë called to council. An Eldar of the Solosimpi, Ainaros pointed out the nakedness of Valinor. All but Manwë, Varda and Ulmo went to build protection and cast magic around Valinor. Helkarakse is now impossible to cross since the ice had been crossed and the stream wider. Ossë made the Magic Isles which now guard the Bay of Faëry. Manwë did not stop the other Vala but asked Lórien and Oromë to make secret routes of passage to and from Valinor. Lórien made a magic route that passes many lovely places (including the future Cottage of the Children of the Earth). Oromë made the rainbow, which can be used as a bridge for the Valar to visit the Great Lands. Mandos and Fui got the Road of Death, a twofold passage that leads fallen Eldar and Men to their halls. The Eldar in Kôr was joyous of the hope that some children of men could be able to come there by the way of Lórien. The Men had not yet been awoken.

Due to the unordered passages of the sun and moon the climate of Valinor and the Great Lands was affected in negative ways. Ulmo took Aulë to the Eastern shored to build havens for the ships. The purpose was to let the sun and moon travel beneath the earth, in Vai. Urwendi did get lost and had to be led back by a servant of Ulmo. A new plan was made, by the Wall of Things, in the west they built the Door of Night. In the east they built the Gate of Morn. These two was used by the sun, while moon still travels under the world.

The Valar was suddenly visited by three aged looking individuals: Danuin, Ranuin and Fanuin. Brothers who came unaided to the Valar. They provided order to the sun and moon and now time could be counted in day, month and year. Then they vanished. The brothers were children of Aluin, the oldest of all Ainur and subject to Ilúvatar. The concept of time first made the Valar vary of the Great End.

The Great End was destined to happen when Melko made Ilinsor take the moon to follow Urwendi throug hthe Gate of Night which would destroy both the gates. Manwë’s son, Fionwë, will be Melko’s bane and destroy the world in order to destroy Melko. This he does out of love for Urwendi who would seem to be lost.

This is the last thing that Vairë tells Eriol and the others as a conclusion of the three tales she told.

Characters to note

  • Danuin – One of the children of Aluin. Brother of Ranuin and Fanuin. Made days.
  • Ranuin – One of the children of Aluin. Brother of Danuin and Fanuin. Made months.
  • Fanuin- One of the children of Aluin. Brother of Ranuin and Danuin. Made years.
  • Aluin – Oldest of the Ainur who is and dreamt of time. Subject to Ilúvatar.
  • Fionwë Urion – Son of Manwë Sulimo. Is destined to destroy Melko (and the world with it) at the Great End.

Places to note

  • Magic Isles – An archipelago of isles that protect the Bay of Faëry made by Ossë during the Hiding of Valinor on request of the Solosimpi.
  • Bay of Faëry – A bay by Valinor protected by the Magic Isles. It is here that Tol Erëssea is anchored. In Silmarillion referred to as The Bay of Eldamar.
  • Haven of the sun – Built by Aulë and Ulmo in the East (Oronto) in order for Urwendi to have a place to rest.
  • Haven of the moon – Built by Aulë and Ulmo in the East (Oronto) in order for Ilonsor to have a place to rest.
  • The Wall of Things – Inside of which all of the world is, created by Ilúvatar. Vai ends at the Wall of Things.

Features to note

  • Door of Night – A gateway in the west at the Wall of all things, which can only be opened by a word known by Urwendi and Manwë. Leads to the Great Dark and allows the sun passage to the Gate of Morn, instead of travelling under the world, in Vai, as does the moon.
  • Gate of Morn – An arch in the east beyong the world which can only be opened by the same word used for the Gate of Night, said backwards.
  • Road of Death – Twofold passage that leads from the world to the halls of Mandos and Fui. One for the Eldar and one for the Men. Also called Qalvanda.
  • Bridge of Heaven – The Rainbow, created by Oromë, to be used as a bridge for the Valar who wanted to visit the Great Lands.
  • Magic way of Lórien – A magic passage that leads past many lovely places on Tol Eressea and few will be able to travel the whole way to Valinor.
  • The Great End – When the world ends and all Valar and Children of Ilúvatar will return to him at the end of the Music.


Since this post is already very long, I’m not going to give a lot of comments.

The most important thing to note, which is also mentioned in the commentary to this chapter, is that the Sun and Moon are both central to the whole myhological conception made by Tolkien. This however do not remain the whole way through to Silmarillion.

Have you read this chapter? Please comment and tell me what you think of this part and if you have anything to add!

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