Of the Silmarils and the Unrest of the Noldor
When Fëanor came to his fullest creative power, he created the Silmarils, three jewels filled with the Light of the Two Trees. The Silmarils were hallowed by Varda so that no one mortal, evil, or with unclean hands could touch them. The people of Aman were delighted with the Silmarils, and Fëanor often displayed them at festivals.
When Melkor saw them, his desire to sunder the Valar and the Elves increased, and he began to spread rumors and lies among the Elves. While at first, little came of his labor, with time, the Elves began to whisper of what he told them, chief of which was that the Valar had brought the Eldar to Aman out of jealousy, fearing that the Elves would flourish beyond their control. The Valar had not yet spoken to the Elves of mortal Men, and this Melkor also used to his devices, claiming that the Valar preferred that the weaker mortal race should inherit Middle-earth.
The Noldor paid heed to these words, and a hunger for his own kingdom grew especially in Fëanor. While Fëanor despised Melkor, Melkor’s words reached him nonetheless, and he began to jealously guard the Silmarils. Seeing the strife between Fëanor and the children of Indis, Melkor also spread lies that Fingolfin sought to supplant Fëanor’s rights as the eldest son; to Fingolfin and Finarfin, he told that Fëanor would drive them from their homes in Tirion.
Not long after, the Noldor began crafting weapons and speaking openly of rebellion, especially Fëanor. Fingolfin sought the counsel of his father Finwë concerning Fëanor, and Fëanor threatened him with a sword on the palace stairs, earning himself twelve years of banishment from Tirion, a decree laid down by the Valar. At this time, the Valar also uncovered Melkor as the root of the rumors, but Melkor had fled and could not be found, although a shadow came over the land that told them that he remained in Aman.
Fëanor went to Formenos to serve the terms of his banishment, taking his sons and his father Finwë with him. Fingolfin ruled the Noldor in his father’s stead. Melkor then came to Fëanor in Formenos and offered to help him form his own kingdom, adding that the Silmarils were at risk in any realm of the Valar. Fëanor saw through his fair words, though, and slammed the door in his face. Finwë, fearful of his son’s daring insolence, sent word immediately to the Valar.
Melkor fled then to Middle-earth, and the shadow was removed from Valinor, but not knowing what evil may still come, the people of Aman looked with fear to the future.