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Denethor (son of Lenwë)

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The name Denethor refers to more than one character, item or concept. For a list of other meanings, see Denethor (disambiguation).
Biographical Information
TitlesKing of the Laiquendi
DeathY.T. 1498
Amon Ereb
Physical Description

Denethor (lived in the Years of the Trees) was the son of the Nandor Elf leader Lenwë (also known as Dan).

Centuries before the first rising of the Sun, Orcs and other foul creatures of Morgoth began to harass the Nandor east of the Blue Mountains. Hearing of the power and protection of the Elf King Thingol, Denethor led many of his people over the Blue Mountains into Beleriand. They settled in Ossiriand, renaming it Lindon, and Denethor became their king. They were called the Laiquendi (Quenya for "Green-elves").

Years later, Morgoth loosed an army on Beleriand, beginning the Dagor-nuin-Giliath ("Battle under the Stars"). The lightly-armed Laiquendi were driven back to the great hill of Amon Ereb, where Denethor was slain. While the Laiquendi survived, they became a reclusive people, seldom taking up arms, and never again naming a king.


In an explanation of the name of Denethor II (who was named after this elf), the Steward of Gondor, it is stated that Denethor is Nandorin fit into the Sindarin sound range, and is said to mean "Lithe and lank".[1]

In the earlier The Lost Road, the name Denethor is said to contain the word element Dani.[2] According to The Lhammas, it derives from Primitive Elvish Ndani-thārō, meaning "Saviour of the Dani", as he was the one who led them to the West. Other derivatives of this name are: Daintáro in Telerin, Nanisáro in Qenya, Dainthor in Noldorin and Denipor in Doriathrin.[3]


  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The War of the Jewels, "Part Four. Quendi and Eldar: Author's Notes to Quendi and Eldar", Note 17
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lost Road and Other Writings, "Part Three: The Etymologies" entry DAN-
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lost Road and Other Writings, "Part Two: Valinor and Middle-earth before The Lord of the Rings, V. The Lhammas"