The Moon of the world of Arda was created by the Vala Aulë. He and his people made a vessel, to hold the radiance of the last flower of Telperion, the elder of the Two Trees of Valinor. The Maia Tilion, a hunter of the company of the Vala Oromë, was chosen to guide the vessel of the Moon. The moon's first rising was right at the edge of a new age, Years of the Sun, FA 1.
- "Isil was first wrought and made ready and first rose into the realm of the stars, and was the elder of the new lights, as was Telperion of the Trees."
Names of the Moon among the Elves included Isil or The Sheen, a name given to it by the Vanyar; Ithil, the common name for the Moon in Sindarin, as seen in Minas Ithil (later Minas Morgul) and Ithilien; and Rána, or The Wayward, a name given to the Moon by the Ñoldor.
A poetic name for the Moon was The Silver Flower, and Gollum referred to it as The White Face.
The Moon was valued as higher than the Sun by the Elves, both because it came from the Elder Tree, and because it rose first: it was made in memory of the Elves. The Sun on the other hand was made in memory of Men.
Other versions of the legendarium
In the earlier tales of the First Age, given in The Book of Lost Tales Part One (a part of The History of Middle-earth series), the Moon was described in great detail as an immense island of crystal, designed after a rose from the ruined tree Silpion. It was also said there that the youth Tilion was secretly be in love with Urwendi (Arien), the maiden who guided the Sun, and that because he steered the Moon too close to the Sun the Moon was burned, causing the darker spots on the Moon.
The "Man in the Moon" is even described in those writings, as being an old Elf who secretly hid and built his minaret there. This is alluded to further in Tolkien's Roverandom, where the Man in the Moon also lives in a Minaret.
In the Round World version of the legendarium, the Sun and the Moon were not the fruit of the Two Trees, but actually preceded the creation of the Trees. Instead, the Trees preserved the light of the Sun before Melkor tainted it when he ravished Arien.
Isil is the Quenya word for 'moon'. After Telperion, Ungoliant killed the silver Tree of Valinor, Yavanna took its last flower and Aulë made a vessel to hold it. Then, with Tilion to guide it, Isil the Sheen was sent into the sky to bring light to Arda.
Its counterpart, Anar the Fire-golden, was a fruit of Laurelin and became the Sun.
Translations around the world
|Foreign Language||Translated name|
|Irish Gaelic||An Ghealach|
|Serbian||Месец (Cyrillic) Mesec (Latin)|
|Uzbek||Ой (Cyrillic) Oy (Latin)|