||This article includes a list of references, related reading or external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks inline citations. (February 2013)|
|Woodland Elves, Wood-elves, Galadhrim|
|Current leader||Galadriel and Celeborn in Lothlórien|
|Base of operations||Mirkwood, Lothlórien|
Silvan Elves are mainly Nandor in descent but also mixed with Avari, Sindar and Noldor and governed by Sindarin rulers. Examples of these rulers are Thranduil king of northern Mirkwood, Amdír, and his son, Amroth, the last Sindarin prince of Lórien before the rule of Galadriel and Celeborn (of Noldorin/Telerin and Sindarin descent, respectively).
The War of the Last Alliance
According to notes made by Tolkien after the publication of Lord of the Rings and found in Unfinished Tales, Oropher, the Sindarin king of the Silvan Elves of Mirkwood, or Greenwood the Great as it was then known, raised a large force as part of the Last Alliance to overthrow Sauron. During the first assault on Mordor, he disregarded Gil-galad's tactical plan and led a reckless charge in which he was slain along with two-thirds of his troops. Rule of the Silvan Elves and field command of their remaining strength passed to Oropher's son Thranduil, the father of Legolas.
The Silvan Elves of Mirkwood are described as distrustful of Dwarves, but friendly to Men, with whom they trade. In The Hobbit, Bilbo Baggins has to rescue the Dwarves of Thorin Oakenshield's company from these Elves. Later in the book they are one of the Five Armies in the Battle of Five Armies.
Legolas of the Fellowship of the Ring, although he lived among them and presented himself as one of the Silvan folk in The Lord of the Rings, was not one of them. As a son of the Elven-king Thranduil, who had originally come from Doriath, Legolas was actually a Sindarin Elf.
The Silvan Elves of Lórien are also called the Galadhrim, literally "tree-folk". After the departure of Amroth in T.A. 1981, they were ruled by Celeborn and Galadriel. At the time of the War of the Ring they spoke a divergent dialect of Sindarin which had changed so much that Frodo Baggins, who spoke some Sindarin, could not understand them. Additionally, few Elves of Lórien could speak Westron, so that Haldir, one of the few that could, had to accompany them on their way to Caras Galadhon. During the War of the Ring the Galadhrim were the strongest of all the elven kingdoms and aided in banishing Sauron the Necromancer from Dol Guldur.
- Tolkien, J. R. R. (1954), The Fellowship of the Ring, The Lord of the Rings, Boston: Houghton Mifflin (published 1987), ISBN 0-395-08254-4
- Tolkien, J. R. R. (1954), The Two Towers, The Lord of the Rings, Boston: Houghton Mifflin (published 1987), ISBN 0-395-08254-4
- Tolkien, J. R. R. (1955), The Return of the King, The Lord of the Rings, Boston: Houghton Mifflin (published 1987), ISBN 0-395-08256-0
- Tolkien, J. R. R. (1977), in Christopher Tolkien, The Silmarillion, Boston: Houghton Mifflin, ISBN 0-395-25730-1
- Tolkien, J. R. R. (1980), in Christopher Tolkien, Unfinished Tales, Boston: Houghton Mifflin, ISBN 0-395-29917-9
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