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Arathorn II

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This article is about the father of Aragorn. For the earlier Chieftain, see Arathorn I.
Arathorn II
Biographical Information
PositionChieftain of the Dúnedain
BirthT.A. 2873
RuleT.A. 2930 - 2933
DeathT.A. 2933, age 60
ChildrenAragorn II
Physical Description
GalleryImages of Arathorn II
"Arathorn is a stern man [...] and will be chieftain sooner than men looked for; yet my heart forbodes that he will be short-lived."

Arathorn II (T.A. 2873[2] - 2933,[3] died aged 60) was the fifteenth Chieftain of the Dúnedain and succeeded his father, Arador, when he was killed in 2930. He was the father of Aragorn II, King of the Reunited Kingdom.


In the last year of his father's reign as Chieftain, in T.A. 2929, Arathorn sought Gilraen as his wife. She was only twenty-two, so her father, Dírhael, opposed the marriage. He also warned that Arathorn would not live long. Yet Ivorwen, Gilraen's mother, was gifted with foresight and perceived that hope would be born from their marriage for the people of the Dúnedain.[1] Thus, Gilraen and Arathorn were married in 2929.[4]

The next year, 2930, Arador, Arathorn's father, was slain by trolls, and Arathorn became Chieftain. A year later, Gilraen bore him a son, whom they named Aragorn. Young Aragorn would never know his father; in 2933, Arathorn went hunting orcs, but was shot through the eye and killed. Gilraen took their son to Rivendell to be fostered by Elrond.

Arathorn II served as Chieftain of the Dúnedain for just three years. He was succeeded by his only son, who would become Chieftain Aragorn II, and in time King Elessar of the Reunited Kingdom of the Dúnedain.[1]


Arathorn was likely named after his ancestor, Arathorn I. There have been two explanations for the name:

In a letter dated 1972, Tolkien gave the name the meaning "Eagle King" (from aran "king" and thoron "eagle").[5]

However, in work written in the late 50's, Tolkien gave "Steadfast King" (from aran "king" and thorn "steadfast") instead.[6]


Aragorn II


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, "The Númenorean Kings", "The Tale of Aragorn and Arwen"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Peoples of Middle-earth, "The Heirs of Elendil", p. 196
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, "The Númenorean Kings", "The Realms in Exile", "The Northern Line: Heirs of Isildur"
  4. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B, "The Third Age"
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 347, (dated 17 December 1972)
  6. J.R.R. Tolkien, "Words, Phrases & Passages in 'The Lord of the Rings'", Parma Eldalamberon 17, page 113
Preceded by:
15th Chieftain of the Dúnedain
T.A. 2930 - T.A. 2933
Followed by:
Aragorn II