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History of Arda


Valian Years

Shaping of Arda
Years of the Lamps
Years of the Trees
Before the First Age
First Age part 1

Years of the Sun

First Age part 2
Second Age
Third Age
Fourth Age
Timeline of Arda

Arda during the First Age

The First Age began with the awakening of Elves, and ended with the overthrow of Morgoth. It included the last portion of the Years of the Trees and the first portion of the Years of the Sun. Its significant events are chronicled in The Silmarillion.


Map of Beleriand, the regions northwest of the familiar later "Middle-earth"

J.R.R. Tolkien described primarily the events of the First Age that occurred in Beleriand. These were centered on a series of wars waged by the Sindar, the Ñoldor and the Three Houses of the Edain (Mankind), against the power of Morgoth. The wars had begun in the Years of the Trees, but were refreshed after the arrival of the Ñoldor in Beleriand. There had been Elves in Beleriand for uncounted millennia, but who were passive, and Morgoth had little to do with them. The Ñoldor, on the other hand, particularly the Sons of Fëanor, had come with the express purpose of opposing Morgoth.

After the destruction of Two Trees of Valinor, the Valar made the Sun and the Moon out of the final fruit of Laurelin and the final flower of Telperion and set them in the heavens. That began The Years of the Sun. Men awoke at the first rising of the first Sun.

The First Age continued for about another 590 years after men awoke. It ended with the final overthrow of Morgoth by the Valar in the War of Wrath, after the voyage of Eärendil.


Before the Years of the Sun

Year Events
YT 1050 Varda creates the Great Stars, setting the Sickle of the Valar in the north as a challenge to Melkor.

Eru awakens the first 144 Elves (Minyar, Tatyar and Nelyar) in Cuiviénen. Thus the First Age of the Children of Ilúvatar begins.

Melian travels to Beleriand after ascending Taniquetil to see the stars.

Fathers of the Dwarves and first Ents awakened by Eru.

Elves discover the Ents and begin teaching them language.

YT 1080 Melkor discovers the Elves and begins capturing them in secret. He breeds the first Orcs, afflicting the Elves with horror.
Khazad-dûm founded by Durin the Deathless.
YT 1085 Oromë discovers the Elves, and calls them Eldar. The Eldar are afraid of Oromë, and blame him for Melkor's work.
YT 1086 Oromë rides back to Valinor and brings message to the Valar. Oromë returns to Middle-earth to stay with the Elves.
YT 1090 Manwë resolves to make a great war upon Melkor.

Over the next two years Melkor is defeated by the Valar and flees into Utumno.

YT 1092 The Valar partially destroy Angband and begin the long Siege of Utumno.
YT 1099 The Siege of Utumno ends. Tulkas captures Melkor and chains him with Angainor.
YT 1100 Utumnno is completely destroyed. Sauron evades his master's downfall and hides in Angband, breeding Orcs and Trolls for Melkor.

Melkor is brought back to Valinor and imprisoned in Halls of Mandos for three ages. The Chaining of Melkor begins.

YT 1101 The Valar summon the Elves through Oromë.
YT 1102 The Elves refuse to leave Middle-earth.

Ingwë, Finwë and Elwë go to Valinor as ambassadors.

YT 1104 Ambassadors return to Cuiviénen and invite the Elves to return with them to Valinor.
YT 1105 The first Sundering of the Elves: the Vanyar under Ingwë, Ñoldor under Finwë, and Teleri under Elwë, depart for Valinor in the Great Journey. The Avari, under Morwë and Nurwë, stay in Cuiviénen.
YT 1115 Second Sundering of the Elves: The host pass Greenwood the Great and come to the River Anduin. Terrified by the Hithaeglir, a part of them go south led by Lenwë and become the Nandor.
YT 1125 The Vanyar and Ñoldor arrive in Beleriand.
YT 1128 The host of the Teleri arrive in Beleriand, tarrying in the great forests of Eriador.
YT 1130 Elwë is lost in Nan Elmoth. He finds Melian the Maia and is entranced.
YT 1132 Ulmo is unwilling to wait until Elwë is found. He brings a mobile island (Tol Eressëa), and the Vanyar and Ñoldor are ferried to Valinor on it.

The Teleri stay behind, looking for Elwë.

Olwë leads the Teleri and meets Ossë and Uinen.

YT 1133 The Vanyar and Ñoldor arrive in Aman.

The Elves begin the building of Tirion on the hill Túna inside the Calacirya pass.

YT 1140 Tirion is completed.

The Vanyar travel into Valinor, taking up abode on the slopes of Taniquetil.

YT 1142 Yavanna gives the tree Galathilion to the Ñoldor.
YT 1149 Ulmo returns to Middle-Earth to bring the Teleri to Aman.

Ossë persuades some of the Teleri to stay in Middle-Earth with him. They become the Elves of the Falas, and establish the havens Brithombar and Eglarest. Círdan becomes their lord, and Ossë teaches them shipcraft.

YT 1150 Most of the Teleri leave Beleriand, taking Elwë's brother Olwë as their lord. They're ferried across on Tol Eressëa, which is anchored in the bay of Eldamar.

The kinsfolk and friends of Elwë stay behind, calling themselves "Eglath", the Forsaken People.

YT 1151 Olwë and his people are called the Falmari upon arrival in Aman on Tol Eressëa.
Finwë marries Míriel.
YT 1152 Elwë wakes from his trance and dwells with Melian in the forests of Beleriand. He is later called Elu Thingol. He settles in Doriath and rules over his remaining Teleri kin, the Sindar.
Nogrod and Belegost founded by Dwarves.
YT 1161 The Falmari learn the art of shipbuilding, and ferry across the bay of Eldamar to Aman. They begin construction of the city of Alqualondë with the help of Finwë and the Ñoldor. Tol Eressëa is abandoned.
YT 1165 The last of the Vanyar leave Tirion and settle in Aman proper.

The Ñoldor remain in Tirion under Finwë their lord, and strengthen their friendship with the Falmari.

YT 1169 Fëanor, son of Finwë and Míriel is born.

The Ñoldor are taught smithing by Aulë, delighting in jewels and other labours.

YT 1170 Birth of Fëanor, death of Míriel.
YT 1172 Doom of Manwë concerning the espousals of the Eldar.[1]
YT 1185 Finwë weds Indis.
Findis born.
YT 1190 Fingolfin, second son of Finwë born.
YT 1200 Second Age of Chaining of Melkor

Lúthien born in Neldoreth.[2]

Irimë born.
YT 1230 Finarfin, third son of Finwë born.
The Elves of the Falas join with the Sindar in an alliance.

Fingon born.

YT 1250 Fëanor devises new letters, called Tengwar.

The Dwarves of Nogrod and Belegost enter Beleriand, establishing trade with the Sindar.

YT 1280 Finarfin weds Eärwen daughter of Olwë.
YT 1300 Turgon son of Fingolfin is born.

Finrod son of Finarfin is born.

Daeron contrives his Runes.[2]

YT 1330 Orcs first appear in Beleriand.[2] Dwarves make weapons for the Sindar.
YT 1350 The Nandor under Denethor arrive in Beleriand. They befriend Thingol and the Sindar, who allow them to dwell in Ossiriand, and they become known as the Laiquendi.
YT 1362 Galadriel is born.

Aredhel is born in Tirion.[2]

YT 1400 Melkor sues for pardon and is released from prison in the Halls of Mandos.
YT 1410 Melkor dwells in Valmar and befriends the Ñoldor.
YT 1449 Fëanor begins the making of the Silmarils.
YT 1450 The Silmarils are made and Varda hallows them.
YT 1469 Idril daughter of Turgon is born.
YT 1450 to 1490 Melkor spreads lies among the Ñoldor.
YT 1481 Gil-galad, the son of Orodreth and great-grandson of Finarfin, is born in Eldamar.
YT 1490 The Valar summon Fëanor who threatens Fingolfin with his sword. They banished him from Tirion. His father Finwë and many of the Ñoldor follow him in exile to Formenos.
YT 1492 Melkor appears before the doors of Fëanor and is rejected. He departs Formenos and joins forces with Ungoliant.
YT 1495 Manwë tries to heal the feud of the Ñoldor, and summons Fëanor to a festival in Valmar. Melkor and Ungoliant destroy the Two Trees, kill Finwë and steal the Silmarils. Fëanor first names Melkor Morgoth.

Fëanor rebels against the Valar. He and his sons swear an Oath to regain the Silmarils. The majority of the Ñoldor go to Alqualondë and demand the swanships of the Teleri. When the Teleri refuse, the Ñoldor kill many Teleri and seize their ships in the First Kinslaying.

The Flight of the Ñoldor begins.

YT 1496 Mandos appears before the Ñoldor and delivers the Doom of Mandos. The Ñoldor are banished from Valinor, and the Valar hide Valinor behind the Enchanted Isles and raise the Pelóri mountains higher.

Finarfin and some of the Vanyar repent and head back to Valinor. His children, however, continue to follow Fëanor.

Ungoliant confronts Morgoth in Lammoth and demands the Silmarils. Balrogs issue from Angband and drive her away. Ungoliant flees to Ered Gorgoroth.

Morgoth returns to Angband and tries to take Beleriand: the First Battle of Beleriand is fought; Denethor of the Laiquendi is slain and the Havens of the Falas are besieged.

YT 1497 Girdle of Melian set in Doriath.

The betrayal of Fingolfin and his people by Fëanor in the Burning of the ships at Losgar.

Death of Amras son of Fëanor. (1 version only)

Dagor-nuin-Giliath is fought.

Fëanor is wounded by Gothmog and dies.

Maedhros meets with Melkor and is captured.

YT 1498 Maedhros is chained on Thangorodrim.
YT 1500 Creation of the Moon and Sun. The Moon arises.

Fingolfin and his people cross the Helcaraxë and enter Beleriand.

Battle of the Lammoth and death of Argon son of Fingolfin.

Years of the Sun

Year Events
YS 1 The Sun first sets sail.

Awakening of Men in Hildórien.

Fingolfin's host completes crossing of Helcaraxë.

20 A festival is held among the Elven lords at the Mereth Aderthad.
50 Turgon and Finrod are told by Ulmo to establish refuges. These later become Gondolin and Nargothrond.
52 Finrod discovers the caves of Nulukkizdîn and soon begins building Nargothrond with aid from the Dwarves.
53 Turgon discovers valley of Tumladen.
60 Dagor Aglareb (Glorious Battle) is fought.

The Ñoldor, ruled by Fingolfin, start the Siege of Angband.

c. 60 to 200 Morgoth is absent from Angband, after discovering Men. Persuaded by Melkor's lies, some Men stop worshipping Eru Ilúvatar and turn to evil, but others revolt: the Atanatári. These travel to the West in search for the Valar, aided by Avari Elves and Dwarves. (According to Melkor's lies, Men now lose the gift to die at will as the result of divine punishment, and are doomed to lead short life-spans at the end of which death takes them by force.) Not true, According to The Silmarillion, based on Tolkien's notes, Men were intentionally created with shorter life spans ending with the Gift of Men.

Finrod builds the fortress of Minas Tirith.

64 Turgon begins building Gondolin.
65 Finrod builds the tower of Barad Nimras ("White Horn Tower") on a cape of the Falas between Brithombar and Eglarest.
c. 102 Founding of Nargothrond.

Finrod hands over Minas Tirith to his nephew Orodreth.

116 Completion of Gondolin. Turgon's people begin the migration from Nevrast in secret.
150 The Dwarves renew their trade in Beleriand.
155 An assault upon Hithlum from the Firth of Drengist is defeated by Fingolfin's forces.
260 Glaurung ravages Ard-galen, but is driven back to Angband.

The Long Peace begins.

310 Bëor leads The First House of the Edain into Beleriand.

Men discovered by Finrod.

320 Maeglin is born in Nan Elmoth
341 Haldar and Haleth born.
361 Andreth, the daughter of Boromir son of Boron is born.
389 Birth of Hador, later Lord of Dor-lómin.
400 Return of Aredhel and Maeglin to Gondolin. Later that year Eöl and Aredhel die.
432 Birth of Beren Erchamion.
c. 455 Birth of Ereinion (later called Gil-galad), son of Orodreth.
455 Morgoth breaks the Siege of Angband in the Dagor Bragollach and kills Fingolfin in a duel.

Fingolfin's son Fingon succeeds his father as High King of the Ñoldor.

Húrin and Huor are brought to Gondolin by Thorondor.

456 Húrin and Huor return from Gondolin to Dor-lómin.
457 Capture of Finrod's fortress of Minas Tirith by the forces of Sauron. Finrod's nephew Orodreth flees for Nargothrond.

Minas Tirith is renamed Tol-in-Gaurhoth, Isle of the Werewolves.

460 Barahir and companions are betrayed and killed.

Beren becomes the sole outlaw in Dorthonion.

464 Birth of Túrin in Dor-lómin.

Beren departs for Doriath and first comes upon Lúthien.

465 Celegorm and Curufin are exiled from Nargothrond and journey to Himring.

Finrod and Beren are imprisoned in Tol-in-Gaurhoth.

Finrod is slain by a werewolf, but Beren is rescued by Lúthien.

466 Beren and Lúthien achieve the Quest of the Silmaril.

Beren dies, and Lúthien abandons life. Lúthien pleads with Mandos and Beren and Lúthien are restored to life.

469 Beren and Lúthien return to life in Middle-earth, taking up their abode in Dor Firn-i-Guinar in Ossiriand. Lalaith, sister of Túrin dies of the plague.
470 Birth of Dior Eluchíl on Tol Galen.
471 Birth of Tuor, son of Huor.
472 Siege and capture of the Havens of the Falas: Brithombar and Eglarest.

The Nírnaeth Arnoediad is fought, and the Easterlings betray the Ñoldor and the Edain.

Deaths of Huor and Fingon,

Húrin is captured and cursed by Morgoth.

c. 473 Birth of Niënor.

Death of Rían.

490 Death of Beleg.

Gurthang is reforged for Túrin, who becomes known as the Black Sword of Nargothrond, or Mormegil.

495 The Battle of Tumhalad and Sack of Nargothrond.

The coming of Tuor to Gondolin.

497 Dior weds Nimloth.
499 Slaying of Glaurung.

Deaths of Túrin Turambar and Niënor Níniel in Brethil.

500 Birth of Elwing, daughter of Dior.
c. 501 Death of Morwen.
502 Thingol is slain and Doriath sacked by Dwarves of Nogrod.

Beren, Laiquendi and Ents destroy the Dwarves at the Battle of Sarn Athrad.

Melian returns to Valinor in grief.

Lúthien wears the Silmaril.

Dior refounds Doriath.

c. 503 Final deaths of Beren and Lúthien.

Dior receives the Silmaril

Death of Húrin.

Birth of Eärendil, son of Idril and Tuor.

505 Doriath is destroyed in the Second Kinslaying.

Dior, Nimloth, and their sons Eluréd and Elurín are killed.

Celegorm, Curufin and Caranthir are slain.

Elwing escapes for the Mouths of Sirion with the Silmaril.

510 Gondolin is betrayed by Maeglin and sacked.

Deaths of Gothmog, Turgon, Glorfindel, Ecthelion of the Fountain, and Maeglin.

525 Eärendil weds Elwing at the Havens of Sirion.

Tuor and Idril set sail in their ship, Eärrámë, and leave Beleriand for Valinor.

532 Elrond and Elros are born to Eärendil and Elwing.
538 Third Kinslaying: while Eärendil is away the remaining Sons of Fëanor attack the people of the Mouths of Sirion, trying to claim the Silmaril.

Amrod and Amras are slain.

Elwing casts herself in the sea but is brought to Eärendil by Ulmo.

Eärendil sets out for Valinor to beg for aid from the Valar.

Maglor begins raising Elrond and Elros.

545 to 587 The War of Wrath.

Most of Beleriand is sunk.

The Sea of Helcar is drained through the Great Gulf.

The plateaus of Mordor, Khand, and Rhûn rise from the former seabed.

Eönwë takes the remaining two Silmarils from Morgoth.

Morgoth's Iron Crown is beat into a collar around his neck and attached to Angainor.

Maedhros and Maglor steal the Silmarils, but the jewels burn their hands and Maedhros jumps into a fiery chasm with his Silmaril whilst Maglor casts his Silmaril into the sea, the fate of Maglor is unknown.

YS 590 Morgoth is thrust through the Door of Night into the Void

The Host of the Valar leaves Middle-earth and summons the Elves to remove to Aman and settle on Tol Eressëa; Círdan, Galadriel and Celeborn, Celebrimbor, Gil-galad and Elrond all elect to remain. A small part of the Ñoldor remain in Lindon, while some Sindar depart east and establish realms under Oropher and Amdír


J.R.R. Tolkien does not give First Age dates in the Appendix B or in Quenta Silmarillion. In works such as The Annals of Aman, Tolkien measures the First Age with Valian Years (VY) and then Years of the Sun (YS).[3]

Robert Foster, among other Tolkienists, attempted to chronicle the First Age, using as convention the Years of the Sun as "First Age", keeping a format similar to the annals in Appendix B. For example, the twentieth Year of the Sun is referred to as I 20 or FA 20, though Foster admits that the definition YS 1 would be more accurate than FA 1. Unfortunately, this convention creates the ambiguation that FA 1 was the first year of the First Age marked as such by the first sunrise, leading to the term "Ages of the Sun", which does not appear in Tolkien's works.

However, Tolkien tells that the Exile of the Ñoldor happened at the end of the First Age meaning the year labeled FA 1 was indeed near the end of this long Age. Furthermore, in The Peoples of Middle-earth, Tolkien explicitly states the First Age was the longest of all Ages, signifying therefore the term "First Age" could be expanded before the first rising of the Sun. But when exactly the First Age began is not clear (perhaps, it was not defined by the chronicles). Possible beginnings of the First Age must have been the creation of Arda itself; the creation of the Two Trees of Valinor which also kept track of time; or most likely the Awakening of the Elves in YT 1050.[3][4]

Chief battles of this Age

  • The Dagor-nuin-Giliath, so named because it was fought before the rising of the Sun, was fought soon after the arrival of the Ñoldor. Morgoth sent a raiding party from Angband to attack the Ñoldor encampment in Hithlum, but the Elves drove it back. Fëanor was killed. It is considered the second battle in the Wars of Beleriand, after one that took place during the Years of the Trees.

Morgoth Bauglir, Enemy of the World and the first "Dark Lord"

  • The Dagor Aglareb was fought about seventy-five years after the return of the Ñoldor. Morgoth again attacked the Ñoldor, and (again) with no success. The Ñoldor became so bold as to besiege Angband. However, the Siege was of limited effectiveness, because the northern side of Angband on the north side of the Ered Engrin was unapproachable to the Elven forces.
  • The Dagor Bragollach began when Morgoth poured rivers of fire out of Angband, ruining the besieging Ñoldorin armies. The Ñoldor eventually mustered a defense, but their losses were severe. For instance, the green plain of Ard-galen had been permanently laid waste by the rivers of fire, and was now called Anfauglith, the Choking Dust; and the highlands of Dorthonion, which had been inhabited by Edain, were made inhospitable.
  • The Nírnaeth Arnoediad was the first battle to be started by the Ñoldor for the purpose of ending the power of Morgoth. They massed an army composed of Elves, Edain, and the Easterling houses of Bór and Ulfang allied to the Sons of Fëanor. The Elves and their allies came very close to Angband, but Morgoth's trickery had upset their battle plan, and Ulfang proved to be treacherous. The name "Unnumbered Tears" comes from the fact that the Elves' last hope of victory was destroyed. The land of Hithlum was lost, the Sons of Fëanor were largely scattered, and the free peoples of Beleriand had been decimated. The forces of Morgoth made a heap of the Elven and Mannish dead in the center of Anfauglith.
  • The War of Wrath took place after Eärendil sailed to Valinor and persuaded the Valar to help those whom they had forsaken. The Valar gathered an army comprised of Maiar, Vanyar, and those Ñoldor who had stayed in Valinor. The Teleri refused their aid, due to the Kinslaying at Alqualondë, but consented to ferry the Host of Valinor in their famous ships. This battle marked the first appearance of the winged dragons, most notably Ancalagon the Black, but the Valar had the day. Morgoth was captured, and cast out of Arda, but his lands, as well as most of Beleriand, had been destroyed and sunk under the sea in the heat of battle.


Foreign Language Translated name
Afrikaans Eerste Era
Albanian Koha e parë
Amharic የመጀመሪያው ዘመን
Arabic العصر الأول
Armenian Առաջին դար
Azerbaijani Birinci dövrü
Basque Lehen Aroa
Belarusian Cyrillic Першая век
Bengali প্রথম যুগ
Bosnian Prvo doba
Bulgarian Cyrillic Първат Епоха
Burmese ပထမခေတ်
Chinese (Hong Kong) 第一紀元
Cambodian យុគសម័យដំបូង
Catalan Primera Edat
Cebuano Una nga panahon
Chichewa M'badwo Woyamba
Cornish Ooj Kensa
Croatian Prvo doba
Czech První Věk
Danish Førstealder
Dutch Eerstetijd
Esperanto Unuaepoko
Estonian Esimene Ajastu
Faroese Fyrstiárstíđ
French Premier Âge
Frisian Earste âldens
Finnish Ensimmäinen Aika
Filipino Unang Edad
Galician Primeira Idade
Georgian პირველი ხანა
German Erstes Zeitalter
Greek Εποχή Πρώτη
Gujarati પ્રથમ યુગ
Haitian Creole Premye laj
Hebrew העידן הראשון
Hindi पहला युग
Hungarian Első kor
Icelandic Fyrsturöld
Igbo Akpa Afọ
Indonesian Zaman Pertama
Irish Gaelic Chéad Aois
Italian Prima Era
Japanese 第二紀
Javanese Jaman Pisanan
Kannada ಮೊದಲ ಯುಗ
Kazakh Бірінші дәуірі (Cyrillic) Birinşi däwiri (Latin)
Korean 제1시대
Kurdish Temenê Yekem (Kurmanji)
Kyrgyz Cyrillic Биринчи доору
Laotian ຄັ້ງທໍາອິດອາຍຸ
Latin Aetas prima
Latvian Pirmā laikmets
Lithuanian Pirmojo amžiaus
Luxembourgish Éischt Ära
Macedonian Cyrillic Првото време
Malagasy Andron'ny Voalohany
Malaysian Zaman Pertama
Malayalam ആദ്യം പ്രായം
Maltese Ewwel Età
Maori Tau Tuatahi
Marathi प्रथम युग
Mongolian Cyrillic Эхний үе
Nepalese पहिलो युग
Norwegian Førstealderen
Occitan Primièr Edat
Odia ପ୍ରଥମ ଯୁଗ
Pashto لومړی عمر
Persian دوران اول
Polish Pierwsza Era
Portuguese Primeira Era
Punjabi ਪਹਿਲੀ ਯੁੱਗ
Querétaro Otomi Ndui Bätsitho
Romanian Epoca Prima
Romansh Emprim Temp
Russian Первая Эпоха
Samoan Tausaga Muamua
Scottish Gaelic A 'chiad aois
Serbian Прва доба (Cyrillic) Prva doba (Latin)
Sesotho Dilemo la Pele
Shona Nguva yekutanga
Sicilian Primu Etati
Sindhi پهريون عمر
Sinhalese පළමු යුගය
Slovenian Prvo doba
Slovak Prvý Vek
Somalian Kowaad Da'
Spanish Primera Edad del Sol
Sundanese Kahiji Umur
Swahili Umri Kwanza ?
Swedish Förstaåldern
Tajik Cyrillic Давраи аввал
Tamil முதல் காலம்
Tatar Башта гасыр
Telugu మొదటి యుగం
Thai ยุคแรก
Turkish Birinci Çağ
Turkmen Birinji asyry
Ukrainian Cyrillic Перша доба
Urdu پہلا دور
Uzbek Биринчи даври (Cyrillic) Birinchi davri (Latin)
Vietnamese Thời đại đầu tiên
Welsh Yr Oes Gyntaf
Xhosa Ixesha lokuqala
Yiddish ערשטער עפאכע
Yoruba Akọkọ ọjọ ori


  1. The History of Middle-earth, Vol. 10: Morgoth's Ring, The Later Quenta Silmarillion, The Second Phase, II: "The Earliest Version of the Story of Finwë and Míriel"
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 "Commentary on the fourth section of the Annals of Aman"
  3. 3.0 3.1 The History of Middle-earth, Vol. X: Morgoth's Ring, The Annals of Aman
  4. The History of Middle-earth, Vol. XI: The War of the Jewels, The Wanderings of Húrin and Other Writings