Tolkien Gateway

Vána

Vána
Vala
Elena Kukanova - Vana the Ever-Young.jpg
"Vána the Ever Young" by Elena Kukanova
Biographical Information
Other namesthe Ever-young
LocationValinor
AffiliationMelian, Arien
Family
SiblingsYavanna
SpouseOromë
Physical Description
GenderFemale
Hair colorGolden
GalleryImages of Vána

Vána, one of the Valier, was the younger sister of Yavanna and the spouse of Oromë. Among the seven Valier, Vána was the sixth named.[1]

Contents

[edit] History

Like her sister, Vána had influence with the flora and fauna of Middle-earth, "all flowers spring as she passes and open if she glances upon them; and all birds sing at her coming."[1] She had "the beauty of both heaven and earth upon her face and in all her works."[2]

Nessa, the sister of Vána's spouse Oromë, wedded Tulkas on the Isle of Almaren, the Valar's first dwelling. Vána robed Nessa with her flowers for the wedding.[3]

Vána dwelt in gardens filled with golden flowers and often came to the forests of Oromë. In the days of the Two Trees of Valinor, the Maia maiden, Arien, "tended to the golden flowers of the gardens of Vána by watering them with the bright dews from Laurelin".[4] Melian was another Maia who initially served Vána and Estë before she departed to Middle-earth.[5]

[edit] Etymology

Vána is Quenya for "beautiful", from root BAN, related to unmarred beauty.[6] She was also called the Ever-young.[1]

[edit] Genealogy

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Aulë
 
Yavanna
 
VÁNA
 
Oromë
 
Nessa
 
Tulkas
 
 
 
 


[edit] Other versions of the legendarium

[edit] The Book of Lost Tales

In the earliest form of the legendarium in The Book of Lost Tales, she and Oromë had a daughter, Nielíqui.[7] Whilst in the origins of the story of the Two Trees, Vána played a formative role in the growth of Laurelin:

Then was the pit covered with rich earths that Palúrien devised, and Vána came who loveth life and sunlight and at whose song the flowers arise and open, and the murmur of her maidens round her was like to the merry noise of the folk that stir abroad for the first time on a bright morning. There sang she the song of spring upon the mound, and danced about it, and watered it with great streams of that golden light that Ulmo had brought from the spilled lakes--yet was Kulullin almost o'erflowing at the end.[8]

Later, when the power of Palúrien had failed to heal the wounds of the Two Trees, Vána's love for Laurelin was so great that it caused the tree's remaining life to come forth one last time as a fruit of gold from which the Valar later fashioned the Sun. Vána's maiden, Urwen, would steer the Sun's vessel across the sky. Vána, who repented of speaking against the harvest of Laurelin's last fruit, cut her hair short to weave the tresses as the sails for the Sun-ship. Among other names, the Sun was called "the Lamp of Vána" in memory of her tears and the hair she offered.[9]

After the Darkening of Valinor and the flight of the Noldoli to the Great Lands, most of the Valar were glad to have their ancient peace back, wishing neither the rumours of Melko and his violence nor the murmur of the restless Noldoli to disturb them again. For such reasons, they sought the concealment and protection of their land Aman. It was said that particularly Vána and Nessa were of one mind in this matter, in accordance with most of the other Valar.[10]

[edit] Later versions

As Tolkien's works evolved, Vána's role was reduced, so in The Silmarillion she does not interfere in the tale of the Sun and Moon, being Nienna's tears what cleansed the trees and Yavanna's songs what brought forth the final bloom of Telperion and fruit of Laurelin.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Valaquenta: Of the Valar"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Morgoth's Ring, "Part Three. The Later Quenta Silmarillion: (I) The First Phase: 1. Of the Valar"
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Morgoth's Ring, "Part Two. The Annals of Aman"
  4. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of the Sun and Moon and the Hiding of Valinor"
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Valaquenta: Of the Maiar"
  6. J.R.R. Tolkien, "Words, Phrases and Passages in Various Tongues in The Lord of the Rings: Eldarin Roots and Stems", in Parma Eldalamberon XVII (edited by Christopher Gilson), p. 150
  7. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Book of Lost Tales Part One, Index, entry "Nielíqui"
  8. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Book of Lost Tales Part One, "III. The Coming of the Valar and the Building of Valinor", p. 71
  9. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Book of Lost Tales Part One, "VIII. The Tale of the Sun and Moon", p. 186
  10. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Book of Lost Tales Part One, "IX. The Hiding of Valinor", pp. 208-209