Of Fëanor and the Unchaining of Melkor

The three races of Elves were now in Valinor, and Aman was its most blissful and productive. Among the illustrious achievements of this age was the invention of writing by Rúmil of Tirion, of the Noldor. Also at this time, Fëanor—the firstborn son of Noldorin king Finwë—was born in Tirion.

While bearing her son, Fëanor’s mother Miriel put forth too much of her spirit and body into him and was consumed, too weary to go on living. She was sent to the Gardens of Lórien, where her spirit left her body and fled to Mandos, and Finwë alone of all the Elves in Aman knew grief and went to Lórien no more, giving his love instead to Fëanor, who grew swiftly and quickly became skilled in craft and lore, devising the first gemstones and improving the alphabet of Rúmil.

While still young, Fëanor married Nerdanel, daughter of Mahtan. From Mahtan, Fëanor learned how to make things from metal and stone. Nerdanel alone could restrain the temper of her fiery husband, although he eventually became too much even for her. Nerdanel and Fëanor had seven sons.

Around this time, Finwë decided to remarry and wed Indis of the Vanyar. Finwë and Indis had two sons—Fingolfin and Finarfin—and their marriage was not pleasing to Fëanor. Fëanor lived apart from them and busied himself with craft.

It also came to pass that Melkor’s term of imprisonment ended, and he was brought before the Valar, where he swore to aid in healing the hurts he had caused. Manwë granted him pardon then, and he gave his counsel to the Valar and the Eldar. Soon, he was allowed to wander Aman at will, and though several of the Valar saw through to the evil that Manwë could not perceive, they did not rebel.

The Noldor, however, loved the new skills that Melkor could teach them, and through them, Melkor spread the lies that would be their undoing. Fëanor, however, always hated and mistrusted Melkor, and though Melkor would later claim to have played a role in Fëanor’s genius, this was in fact a lie, and Fëanor always worked alone.

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