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The War for Sake of the Elves, or War of the Powers, was fought in the Years of the Trees between Melkor and the Valar who sought to free the Elves from Melkor's influence.



In the ages prior to the sun, Arda was reformed by the massive energy released when Melkor destroyed the original light sources, the Two Lamps. The Valar fled the razing to the newly formed continent of Aman and built Valinor, while Melkor reigned unchecked in the new continent of Middle-earth, where he corrupted the surviving beasts. Unaware of these designs, the Valar did not approach him for fear that the confrontation would be just as world-devastating as the extinguishment of the light. Their priority was to protect the original plan of creation, though they were unsure of what was salvageable. They did not know if Eru's personal creations, Elves and Men, would now ever come into being after the catastrophe.

Fortunately, the Elves did come to being; however, they appeared in Middle-earth near Cuiviénen. Withdrawn, the Valar were unaware of this. On the other hand, Melkor quickly learned of this through his spies. Soon, Elves who wandered too far from their lands were captured and taken to Utumno. There, in Melkor's utmost contempt for Eru and his sole ability to create life, they were corrupted through torture into servants bred solely for war - Orcs.

Sometime later, while on a hunting trip in Middle-earth, the Valar Oromë stumbled upon the Elves that were unharmed. After realizing what they were, he asked them to return with him to Valinor for their protection. While the majority of them agreed, a some refused, believing him to be their kidnapper. When Oromë returned with the Elves willing to leave with him, the Valar were made aware of Orcs. Their creation was most-likely seen as the worst imaginable offense. Manwë and the rest of the Valar could stand this no longer, and so the Valar took counsel with each other and decided to rid Middle-earth of Melkor's tyranny.

The War

Soon, the Valar declared war on Melkor, presumably assembling a massive army of light, and battled him for many decades. The Host of the Valar easily defeated Melkor's host at the Battle of the Powers in north-western Middle-earth near Angband. The remnant of his forces fled back to Utumno and fortified themselves there. The Valar passed over Middle-earth and placed a guard over Cuiviénen to protect the Elves from any further effects of the war or perhaps from an attack from Melkor's servants. Then, the Host of the Valar went north to Utumno and besieged it. In their haste to attack Utumno, the Valar did not fully cleanse Angband of evil creatures, who lingered in its deepest pits. After decades of siege, the Host of the Valar finally broke through and after Tulkas himself personally defeated Melkor in combat, they captured him and took him to Valinor for judgment, sentencing him to prison in the Halls of Mandos for thousands of years.


The war between the two powers devastated the lands of Middle-earth and the face of the continent was changed. The distance between Middle-earth and Aman separated by the Great Sea became wider. A Gulf in south was created and small bays appeared between the Great Gulf and Helcaraxë. The Mountains of Hithlum and the highlands of the Dorthonion were created. The Sirion river that flowed into the newly formed Bay of Balar appeared. Free of evil, the Elves were invited to Valinor and undertook a Great Journey across Middle-earth in which new Elven cultures were developed. The result was the peopling and colonization of the western parts of Middle-earth with the Children of Ilúvatar.[1]

Following the War, the Balrogs hid in the ruins of Angband. This fortress would become Melkor's stronghold on his eventual return to Middle-earth.


The main legacy of war was that it allowed the Elves to go to Aman and Valinor where they became High Elves, enlightened, cultured, and skilled. Elves in Middle-earth established themselves learning much of nature, woodlore, and shipbuilding. However, the fear brought about by Melkor caused some Elves to refuse the summons of the Valar and stay in the east. These Elves, the Avari, developed separate and more secretive cultures and stayed away from the affairs of their long lost brethren for the most part. May thousands of years later in the Third and Fourth Ages, some would become the Silvan Elves that would be the last of the kindreds of left in Middle-earth ever after. The languages of the Elves spread throughout Middle-earth and blended and influenced other tongues and became known of ever after.[1]

The other legacy was that Melkor, then released from prison who would ever after remember that his downfall was because of the Elves sought revenge, thus causing the Revolt of the Ñoldor and the War of the Jewels and the battles[2][3] and great deeds that followed. It would also serve to shape the course of the history of the Children of Ilúvatar for ages to come.


Foreign Language Translated name
Czech Válka kvůli Elfům
Danish De Vældiges Kamp for elverfolket
Italian Guerra per Amore degli Elfi
Polish Wojną ze Względu na Elfów
Russian Война во имя эльфов
Slovak Vojna kvôli Elfom