The following lists have been compiled from information contained in Tolkien’s writings – in particular The Return of the King, The Silmarillion, Unfinished Tales and The War of the Jewels. Tolkien gives us no data after the time of Eldarion, and so for the Fourth and later ages other sources have been used, which have been noted in detail below. All the dates given by Tolkien for the history of Middle-earth can be converted to BC dates using a simple formula: the Years of the Sun began in 10,153 BC, the Second Age in 9563 BC, the Third Age in 6122 BC, and the Fourth Age (Gondor) in 3102 BC. As for later ages, we only have the following statement, made by Tolkien in 1958: “But they have, I think, quickened; and I imagine we are actually at the end of the Sixth Age, or in the Seventh.” (Letters, #211) Any attempt to assign dates to the beginning of the Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Ages must therefore remain speculative (see Chronology for such an attempt).
Folk of Bëor (First House of the Edain)
The Folk of Bëor entered Beleriand in 9844 BC and ceased to exist as an independent people in 9694 BC, their descendants eventually migrating to Númenor. The list on the right is derived from The Silmarillion and The War of the Jewels.
Balan (Bëor the Old) 9844–9843 (d. 9799) Baran (Bëor the Young) 9843–9774 Boron 9774–9746 Boromir 9746–9722 Bregor 9722–9706 Bregolas 9706–9699 Barahir 9699–9694
Haladin (Second House of the Edain)
The Haladin entered Beleriand in 9842 BC but were not united under a single chieftain until 9779 BC. They ceased to exist as an independent people in 9653 BC, their descendants eventually migrating to Númenor. The list on the right is derived from The Silmarillion and The War of the Jewels.
Folk of Marach, or Hador (Third House of the Edain)
The Folk of Marach, later known as the Folk of Hador, entered Beleriand in 9841 BC and ceased to exist as an independent people in 9652 BC, their descendants eventually migrating to Númenor. The list on the right is derived from The Silmarillion and The War of the Jewels.
Marach 9841–9778 Malach Aradan 9778–9756 Magor 9756–? Hathol Hador Lórindol ?–9699 Galdor the Tall 9699–9692 Húrin Thalion 9692–9652
Kingdom of Númenor
Founded as a new home for the Edain, now known as Dúnedain (Men of the West) on an island in the Great Sea, after the destruction of Beleriand in 9564 BC. Númenor was later destroyed during the Change of the World in 6245 BC. The list on the right is derived from Unfinished Tales.
Elros Tar-Minyatur (Gimilzôr) 9532–9122 Vardamir Nólimon (Zimravrati) 9122–9121 (d. 9093) with... Tar-Amandil (Ar-Aphanuzîr) 9122–8974 (d. 8961) Tar-Elendil (Ar-Gimilzîr) 8974–8824 (d. 8813) Írimon Tar-Meneldur (Ar-Minûlzûr) 8824–8681 (d. 8622) Anardil Tar-Aldarion 8681–8489 (d. 8466) Tar-Ancalimë (fem.) 8489–8284 (d. 8279) Tar-Anárion 8284–8170 (d. 8160) Tar-Súrion 8170–8008 (d. 7990) Tar-Telperiën (fem.) 8008–7873 (d. 7873) Tar-Minastir 7873–7695 (d. 7691) Tar-Ciryatan (Ar-Balkumagan) 7695–7535 (d. 7529) Tar-Atanamir the Great 7535–7343 Tar-Ancalimon 7343–7178 Tar-Telemmaitë 7178–7038 Tar-Vanimeldë (fem.) 7038–6927 Herucalmo Tar-Anducal 6927–6907 Tar-Alcarin 6907–6827 Tar-Calmacil (Ar-Belzagar) 6827–6739 Tar-Ardamin (Ar-Abattarîk) 6739–6665 Tar-Herunúmen (Ar-Adûnakhôr) 6665–6602 Tar-Hostamir (Ar-Zimrathôn) 6602–6531 Tar-Falassion (Ar-Sakalthôr) 6531–6462 Tar-Telemnar (Ar-Gimilzôr) 6462–6387 Tar-Palantir the Farsighted (Ar-Inziladûn) 6387–6309 Míriel (Ar-Zimraphel) (fem.) 6309 (d. 6245) Tar-Calion (Ar-Pharazôn the Golden) 6309–6245
Kingdom of Arnor
One of the two Realms in Exile founded after the destruction of Númenor in 6245 BC (Gondor being the other), Arnor was situated in the north-west of Middle-earth. The kingdom lasted until 5262 BC, when it was divided. The list on the right is derived from The Return of the King.
Elendil the Tall (also King of Gondor) 6244–6123 with... Isildur (also King of Gondor) 6244–6121 Valandil 6121–5874 Eldacar 5874–5784 Arantar 5784–5688 Tarcil 5688–5608 Tarondor 5608–5521 Valandur 5521–5471 Elendur 5471–5346 Eärendur 5346–5262
Kingdom of Arthedain
The most important of the three kingdoms into which Arnor was divided in 5262 BC (the others being Cardolan and Rhudaur, the kings of which are unknown). Arthedain was sometimes also referred to as Arnor. The list on the right is derived from The Return of the King.
Amlaith of Fornost 5262–5177 Beleg 5177–5094 Mallor 5094–5013 Celepharn 5013–4932 Celebrindor 4932–4851 Malvegil 4851–4774 Argeleb I 4774–4767 Arveleg I 4767–4714 Araphor 4714–4534 Argeleb II 4534–4453 Arvegil 4453–4380 Arveleg II 4380–4310 Araval 4310–4232 Araphant 4232–4159 Arvedui Last-king 4159–4149 (d. 4148)
Rangers of the North
After the fall of Arthedain in 4149 BC, the royal line was preserved as a chieftainship amongst the Rangers of the North (i.e. those of the Dúnedain who survived in the area of the former Kingdom of Arnor). The list on the right is derived from The Return of the King.
Aranarth 4147–4017 Arahael 4017–3946 Aranuir 3946–3876 Aravir 3876–3804 Aragorn I 3804–3796 Araglas 3796–3668 Arahad I 3668–3600 Aragost 3600–3535 Aravorn 3535–3469 Arahad II 3469–3404 Arassuil 3404–3339 Arathorn I 3339–3275 Argonui 3275–3211 Arador 3211–3193 Arathorn II 3193–3190 Aragorn II (later Elessar Telcontar) 3190–3104 (d. 2983)
Kingdom of Gondor
One of the two Realms in Exile founded after the destruction of Númenor in 6245 BC (Arnor being the other), Gondor was situated far to the south of Arnor. Despite the dying out of its royal line in 4073 BC, the kingdom survived right up until the War of the Ring, and in 3104 BC became the core territory of the newly founded Reunited Kingdom. The list on the right is derived from The Return of the King.
Land of the Hobbits, first settled in 4522 BC. Nominally subject to the Kings of Arthedain, of which it formed a part, after the fall of that kingdom the Hobbits instituted the office of Thain to discharge the functions of the former kings (the names of some of the earlier Thains are not recorded). The list on the right is derived from The Return of the King.
Bucca of the Marish 4144–? Ten more Oldbuck Thains, names unknown, then... Gorhendad ?–3783 (d. ?)
Isumbras I 3783–? Eight more Took Thains, including, in unknown order... Isengrim I Isumbras II Ferumbras I Paladin I With four others, names unknown, then... Isengrim II 3440–3401 Isumbras III 3401–3364 Ferumbras II 3364–3322 Fortinbras I 3322–3275 Gerontius the Old Took 3275–3203 Isengrim III 3202–3193 Isumbras IV 3193–3184 Fortinbras II 3184–3143 Ferumbras III 3143–3108 Paladin II 3108–3089 Peregrin I 3089–3039 (d. ?) Faramir I 3039–?
Reunited Kingdom of Arnor and Gondor
Established in 3104 BC as a result of the War of the Ring. The list on the right is derived from The Return of the King.
For the descendants of Aragorn as kings of the Reunited Kingdom we must turn to Tolkien’s own sources, such as Snorri Sturluson’s 13th century Prose Edda and the earlier Anglo-Saxon Chronicle. The list of descendants of Trór (Thór) – equated here with Aragorn (Elessar) – as recorded in the Prose Edda, is reproduced in yellow. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle provides another version of the same list, shown in white. It omits the first 7 generations and adds a few extra ones later on. Tolkien’s names, where known, are in red.
The inhabitants of the Reunited Kingdom, the Dúnedain, were the ancestors of the Germanic, or Teutonic, peoples of Europe, and the language represented by Tolkien as Westron, the Common Speech, is the ancestor of the Germanic language family.
Colour key to names: Prose Edda Anglo-Saxon Chronicle Tolkien’s Legendarium
Migration to the North, division of kingdom c.100 BC
24. 25. 26. 27.
Vóden Vegdeg Vitrgils Vitta
Woden Wegdæg Wihtgils Witta
Eoh Ottor Wǽfre
Settlement of Tol Eressëa, which became England 449 AD
1. Trór, or Thór, slew the duke of Thrace (Thrúdheim), and became its king. He travelled far and wide, overcoming many adversaries, and in the northern half of his kingdom met a prophetess named Sibil, or Sif – the fairest of all women – whom he married. This account from the Prose Edda closely parallels Tolkien’s story of how Aragorn (Elessar) came to the throne of Gondor following the death of its Ruling Steward (though the latter, Denethor II, took his own life), and his marriage to Arwen who came from the north. Thrúdheim, or Gondor, is more likely to have been centred in the area later known as Noricum, or Austria, than Thrace (see Geography for the probable location of Minas Tirith, the capital).
8. Scéaf, or King Sheave to use Tolkien’s rendering of his name (The Lost Road and Other Writings), was an ancient culture hero to the Germanic peoples. He was washed ashore as a child in a boat, and later accepted as king. Though not explicitly stated, that this event occurred as a result of a great flood is both eminently logical and fits our chronology perfectly, adding further veracity to it. If the flood, as we strongly suspect, occurred around 2200 BC, the average length of generation on either side of this divide is almost exactly the same – 129 and 128 years respectively. This also happens to be very close to that of the kings of Númenor (131 years), who, like the descendants of Aragorn and Arwen, had a strong Elven genetic component. Sheave’s seven sons became the ancestors of the Danes, Goths, Swedes, Northmen, Franks, Frisians, Swordmen, Saxons, Swabes, English and Langobards. According to early sources such as Widsith and Æthelweard’s 10th century Chronicon, Scéaf was washed ashore on an island named Scani, or Scandza (i.e. Scania, the southern region of the Swedish mainland), though according to William of Malmesbury’s 12th century Gesta regum Anglorum he reigned from Schleswig in what is now north-west Germany. It would appear, however, that the dynasty’s most important seat remained in the south, in Noricum, until the time of Vóden.
24. Woden, or Vóden (Odin) in the Prose Edda, led his people from ‘Thrace’ (i.e. Noricum) to the north, which he divided amongst his sons – Vegdeg (his firstborn, or at least, his first named son) took East Saxland, Beldeg took Westphalia, Sigi took Frankland, Skjöldr took Reidgothland (Jutland), and Sæmingr took Norway. Odin himself reigned in Sweden, and was succeeded there by his son Yngvi. From these descend the royal dynasties of most of Northern Europe – and through them, by now, the majority of its general population too. Counting the generations back, we find that Vóden must have reigned in the 2nd and 1st centuries BC, at which time Noricum, ancient southern seat of the kings, was gradually coming under Roman domination – the cause, presumably, of his migration.
27. Witta, or Ottor Wǽfre according to Tolkien (The Book of Lost Tales, vol. 1), fled to Heligoland – the Holy Island – from his home in Angeln, when his uncle, Beorn, murdered his father, Vitrgils (or Eoh according to Tolkien). On Heligoland Ottor married Cwen (i.e. Queen), and they had two sons – Hengest and Horsa. After Cwen’s death Ottor sailed to the west and arrived at Tol Eressëa, where he settled at the Cottage of Lost Play in Kortirion and learnt the history and lore of the Elves, who called him Eriol or Angol. He married the Elf-maid Naimi, and they had a son named Heorrenda. According to the earliest version of the tale, some time later occurred the Faring Forth, in which the Lost Elves of the Great Lands rose up against the servants of Melko (Melkor), and Ulmo uprooted Tol Eressëa and dragged it across the sea to the east. Ossë attempted to drag it back, but it broke in two. At the subsequent Battle of Rôs (Brittany) the Elves were defeated by the forces of Melko and retreated back to Tol Eressëa, which was itself then invaded. At the Battle of the Heath of the Sky-roof (Ladwen-na-Dhaideloth), which took place near Tavrobel and was witnessed by Ottor, the Elves and their allies fled over the rivers Gruir and Aros, and Tol Eressëa fell under the power of evil men. Since Ottor is also described by Tolkien as a descendant of Eärendil, this is further evidence that our initial assumption equating Trór with Aragorn is correct.
28. Hengist, or Hengest, his brother Horsa and half-brother Heorrenda, in the earliest version of the tale, conquered Tol Eressëa from the evil men and it became known as England – with the fragment broken off by Ossë becoming Ireland. The notion that Tol Eressëa became England belongs to Tolkien’s earliest myth cycle and seems incompatible with the Shire being situated in what is now the English Midlands. However, a later version of the story (The Book of Lost Tales, vol. 2) states that after the Elder Days, the Elves settled in Luthany (Lúthien), ruled over by a mortal king named Inwë (Ingwë), who sailed over the sea to Tol Eressëa and founded towns there which he named after those in Luthany, such as Kortirion and Tavrobel. Luthany was later cut off from the mainland by flooding, and became the island of Britain, but when the Rumhoth (Romans) invaded, the remaining Elves fled to Tol Eressëa. So the events described above, from the Faring Forth, happened not in Tol Eressëa but in Luthany (Britain), and the Faring Forth itself, along with the Battle of Rôs, became part of a prophecy associated with the Final Battle (Dagor Dagorath). The conquest of England by Hengist and Horsa began in the year 449 AD according to the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, and the leader of the evil men (a term also used for the Rumhoth) is named in that source as Vortigern. Hengest settled in Kortirion (Warwick), Horsa in Taruithorn (Oxford) and Heorrenda in Tavrobel (Great Haywood, Staffs.). Horsa was slain in battle in 455, Hengest died in 488, and the fate of the half-Elven Heorrenda is unknown.