Tolkien’s Hierarchy of Creation

[Iluvatar created the Ainur who participated in the creation of all else. The creation consisted of the Universe (Ea), and in the Universe was the World (Arda), and in the World to the west was the home of the Ainur on Arda called Valinor & to the east across the sea was Middle-earth]

Iluvatar (Eru)

[“The One”, The Creator]


[“Holy Ones” / Angelic powers]
Created beings who participated in the creation of the Universe (Ea) and the World (Arda). The mightiest being Melkor (later called Morgoth); the only one to be jealous of Iluvatar & who later bred orcs, trolls and dragons to carry out his evil designs. The Ainur who came into the west of Arda were called the Valar; the ruling council of the Valar were called the Aratar (The High Ones of Arda).

           Servants and helpers of the Valar. Sauron (Gorthaur) originally served Aule, but became         
           the disciple of Melkor. The most famous of the Heren Istarion (Order of Istari, Wizards) were
           Saruman the White, Gandalf the Grey (Mithrandir, Olorin)
           and Radagast the Brown, all of whom came to Middle-earth in the 3rd Age. Also there were    
           demons of power called Valaraukar (Balrogs) who served Melkor.


(Onodrim, Enyd)
                                                Most ancient race on Middle-earth. Protectors & herders of
                                                trees, which they also resembled. There last stronghold was 
                                                Fanghorn Forest.

Tom Bombadil
A unique creature whose habitat on Middle-earth was the
            old forest and dales to the east of  the Shire bordering Buckland.


                                                          Sons of Iluvatar
[Creatures made by the Valar and appearing in Middle-earth from the east]


Elves (Quendi, “first born of Iluvatar”)

Avari (East-elves, Dark-elves)
When summoned to Valinor in the 1st Age (before the keeping of time) they chose to remain in the far east of Middle-earth, not figuring in the history of any other peoples.

Eldar (West-elves)
Spoke Eldarin (“Elven-latin”) which gave birth to both Quenya and Sindarin.
When summoned to Valinor in the 1st Age (before the keeping of time) they started on the journey, but not all completed it.

            Vanyar (Fair-elves)
            Spoke Quenya. Spent time in Valinor.

            Noldor (Deep-elves, High-elves of Middle-earth)
            Spoke Quenya. Spent time in Valinor. The craftsmen of the Eldar; it was Feanor
            who fashioned the Silmarilli. It was the pursuit of the Silmarilli, stolen by
            Morgoth, that caused the Noldor’s exile to Middle-earth in the 1st Age. In the 2nd
            Age it was Celebrimbor, grandson of Feanor, who forged the elven rings of power. 

            Teleri (Late-comers) / Lindar (Singers)
            Never went to Valinor. Settled in Middle-earth. Spoke Sindarin. Largest group of
            the Elven peoples.

                        Nandor (Green-elves)
                        Settled in Ossiriand in Middle-earth.

                        Sindar (Grey-elves)
                        Settled in Beleriand in Middle-earth.

Settled in Eldamar, across the sea near Valinor.

Created first but put to sleep so that the Elves could be the first born of


Most representative type; Shire hobbits who lived in burrows

Least numerous; somewhat taller & thinner

East Farthing & Buckland hobbits; somewhat larger & heavier.
Smeagol (Gollum) was of this type


Men / Humankind

Called by a multitude of names, but always somehow to be thought of as outsiders and interlopers. With the final departure from Middle-earth of elves, and with the dwindling in numbers of the other races, humankind became the inheritors of the world and in time forgot about the other peoples, and forgot the heroic acts of the past.


PJS [rev. 7/06]


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