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Stewards of Gondor

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Steward (Q. Arandur "King's Servant") was the traditional title of a chief counselor to one of the Kings of Gondor.

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[edit] History of the office

King Rómendacil I established the office of Steward, chosen by the King as a man of high trust and wisdom; Stewards were advanced in years since they were not permitted to go to war or to leave the realm. They were never a member of the Royal House.[1]

The Steward to King Minardil, Húrin of Emyn Arnen, was the founder of the House of Húrin. They were of high Númenórean blood, but not descendants of Elendil in the ruling line. After the time of Minardil, the Kings established the custom that Stewards are chosen from this House.

During the time of the Steward Pelendur, this title became hereditary, passing the station of counselor from father to son, much like the Kingship.

[edit] The Ruling Stewards

After the death of King Eärnur, who left no heir to the throne of Gondor, the Steward Mardil Voronwë became the first of the Ruling Stewards. Mardil was the first of the Stewards to administer Gondor, and his descendants did so for 25 generations. The Stewards watched over the throne until it could be reclaimed by a true King of Gondor, an heir of Elendil.

[edit] Reunited Kingdom

Soon after the death of Denethor II, Aragorn Elessar was crowned King. The Steward Faramir, son of Denethor II, surrendered to the King his rod of office, but it was returned to him. Faramir nominally ruled briefly as Steward until Elessar's coronation, but since Faramir rested in the Houses of Healing, Prince Imrahil of Dol Amroth took his place much of that time. Though Faramir became Steward a month and a half before Elessar became King, Faramir is not considered one of the Ruling Stewards. King Elessar confirmed in Faramir and his descendants the office of Steward of Gondor, and granted him in addition the title of Prince of Ithilien, ensuring his line a position as counselor of the King.

References

  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, "Cirion and Eorl and the Friendship of Gondor and Rohan", note 53