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Mablung

This article is about the Elf of Doriath. For the Ranger of Ithilien, see Mablung (ranger of Ithilien).
Edward Johnson - Mablung.jpg
Mablung
Sinda
Biographical Information
Other names"Mablung of the Heavy Hand"
PositionChief captain of Thingol
LocationDoriath
AffiliationHunting of the Wolf
LanguageDoriathrin (Sindarin dialect)
DeathF.A. 503
Battle of the Thousand Caves
Physical Description
GenderMale
WeaponrySpear and knife[1]
Mablung was a captain and marchwarden to King Elu Thingol of Doriath.

Together with Beleg Cúthalion he was one of the great captains of the Sindar and were often seen together when outside Doriath. Contrary to Beleg, who was on duty in the marches of Doriath, Mablung seems to have been in a position of command in Menegroth and present at important events.[2]

[edit] History

Mablung and Beleg were present at the Mereth Aderthad as Thingol's messengers,[3]

The pair also participated to the Hunting of the Wolf to reclaim the Silmaril from Carcharoth, who had swallowed Beren's hand holding it. Mablung "was chiefly remembered by in legend" for after removing Beren's hand (still unpolluted and holding the Silmaril) from the belly of the beast, his own hand fell violently to the ground and was "forced open", from what appeared to be the great weight of the Silmaril.[4][5]

Beleg and Mablung were the only two Elves of Doriath who took part in the Nirnaeth Arnoediad.[6]

Mablung was in charge to guard Morwen Eledhwen, who had dwelt in Doriath at the time, when she set out to Nargothrond in search of her son Túrin Turambar. Unknown to both Mablung and Morwen, Nienor daughter of Morwen, had joined them.

The women were left back upon Amon Ethir and Mablung set out with a small company to scout Nargothrond as were his orders by Thingol. Yet Glaurung left Nargothrond and Mablung was unable to prevent them both from getting ensnared in the traps of the Dragon. He hid from Glaurung and then searched the sacked Nargothrond, finding no sign of Túrin. Glaurung when returning mocked Mablung, sparing his life, and informing him that he had now lost also Morwen and Nienor.

Eventually Mablung did find Nienor, enchanted by Glaurung, and her lost her again during an Orc attack. Defeated, Mablung returned to Doriath and due to his failure at Nargothrond he asked Thingol to dismiss him. Thingol though judged that the failure hardly was Mablung's fault and Glaurung was too mighty an enemy for him and kept Mablung in his position. Nevertheless he spent years afterwards searching for Morwen and Nienor.[7]

Learning that Glaurung was in Brethil, Mablung went there, and met Túrin who had just slain the dragon. By admitting Nienor was lost he caused Túrin to realize that Níniel his wife had actually been his sister Nienor, and Túrin killed himself.[8]

Mablung was slain in the Battle of the Thousand Caves by the Dwarves of Nogrod in front of the treasure chamber in which the Nauglamír had been stored.[9]

[edit] Etymology

The Sindarin name Mablung is translated as "with weighted hand". The name might either have been prophetic or given as a title after the cutting of the Silmaril.[4][5]

The Quenya equivalent of Mablung appears to have been Lungumá or Lungumaqua ("Heavyhand"), containing the element ("hand").[4]

[edit] References

  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of Beren and Lúthien"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Children of Húrin, "Túrin in Doriath"
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of the Return of the Noldor"
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 J.R.R. Tolkien, "Eldarin Hands, Fingers & Numerals and Related Writings — Part One" (edited by Patrick H. Wynne), in Vinyar Tengwar, Number 47, February 2005, pp. 8, 19 (note 11)
  5. 5.0 5.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Shaping of Middle-earth, "III. The Quenta: [Section] 13", p. 187
  6. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of the Fifth Battle: Nirnaeth Arnoediad"
  7. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Children of Húrin, "The Journey of Morwen and Niënor to Nargothrond"
  8. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Children of Húrin, "The Death of Túrin"
  9. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of the Ruin of Doriath"