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The White Tree, by Ted Nasmith

The White Tree of Gondor was the symbol of the realm of Gondor. While there were several trees referred to as the "White Tree," the best-known of these grew in the Court of the Fountain in Minas Tirith. The White Tree was also the motif of Gondor's flag.

Description

This iconic tree was in appearance a tall spacious tree of graceful form, white thin unwrinkled bark over white wood. In spring it bore numerous white flowers, but few of these ever fructified; what shape the fruit was is never described, nor was it considered to be edible. The leaves were laurel-like, dark green above and bright silver beneath.

It was fashioned in the image of Telperion, elder of the Two Trees of Valinor, originally. This image was given to the Elves of Tirion in Valinor and named Galathilion. From it a sapling was taken to Tol Eressëa, named Celeborn. This in turn sired the tree Nimloth of Númenor, felled by Sauron and burned on the altar of the Temple.[1]

History

First White Tree

The first White Tree of Gondor came from a fruit that Isildur stole from Nimloth the Fair, before it was was destroyed. Isildur brought the sapling to Middle-earth and eventually planted it in Minas Ithil before his house. But when Sauron returned to Middle-earth, he attacked and captured Minas Ithil, destroying the White Tree. Isildur escaped, again taking a sapling with him.[2]

Second White Tree

In TA 2 while in Minas Anor instructing his nephew Meneldil in rulership, Isildur planted a sapling of the White Tree in memory of his brother, Anárion.[3] This White Tree stood until TA 1636, when the Great Plague spread across Gondor and the tree died.

Third White Tree

A third sapling was planted in TA 1640 by King Tarondor. After the line of the Kings failed the tree never bore fruit and seldom flowered and finally withered and died in TA 2872 at the death of the Ruling Steward Belecthor II. At this time no seedling of the tree was found, and the dead tree was left standing "until the King returns."[4]

Fourth White Tree

Following his coronation as King of Gondor, Aragorn was taken by Gandalf to the slopes of Mindolluin. There, Aragorn found a sapling of the White Tree. The dead tree was removed from the court and placed in the Houses of the Dead, and Aragorn planted the sapling in its place. In June of TA 3019, the tree bloomed.[5]

Portrayal in adaptations

The Lord of the Rings film trilogy

The White Tree as depicted in Peter Jackson's films

The finding of the sapling is not seen in Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003). In the film, the previously dead tree is shown to be flowering again during the Siege of Gondor and the imminent arrival of Aragorn on the Black Ships.

Line of the White Tree

   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Telperion

(destroyed)
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Galathilion
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Celeborn of Tol Eressëa
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Nimloth of Númenor
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
First White Tree of Minas Ithil

(planted by Isildur, Second Age)
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Second White Tree of Minas Anor

(planted by Isildur, TA 2 - TA 1636)
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Third White Tree of Minas Tirith

(planted by Tarondor, TA 1640 - TA 2872)
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Fourth White Tree of Minas Tirith

(planted by Aragorn II Elessar, TA 3019)


Translations

Foreign Language Translated name
Afrikaans Wit Boom van Gondor
Albanian Pemë e bardhë e Gondorit
Arabic شجرة جوندور البيضاء
Armenian Գոնդոր-ի Սպիտակ ծառ
Azerbaijani Gondor'in ağ ağacı
Basque Gondoreko Zuhaitz Zuria
Belarusian Cyrillic Белае дрэва Гондара
Bengali গন্দর এর সাদা বৃক্ষ
Bosnian Bijelo drvo Gondora
Bulgarian Cyrillic Бяло дърво на Гондор
Catalan Arbre blanc de Góndor
Chinese 圣白树
Croatian Bijelo stablo Gondora
Czech Bílý strom Gondoru
Danish Hvide træ af Gondor
Dutch Witte Boom van Gondor
Esperanto Blanka Arbo de Gondoro
Estonian Gondori valge puu
Fijian Vulavula na vunikau ni Gondor
Filipino Puting Puno ng Gondor
Finnish Gondorin Valkoinen Puu
French Arbre blanc du Gondor
Galician Árbore Branca de Gondor
Georgian გონდორის თეთრი ხე
German Weißer Baum von Gondor
Greek Λευκό δέντρο της Γκόντορ
Gujarati ગોન્ડોરના સફેદ વૃક્ષ
Haitian Creole Bwa Blan de Gondor
Hausa Farin bishiya na Gondor
Hawaiian ʻO ka lāʻau keʻokeʻo o Gondor
Hebrew עץ לבן של גונדור
Hindi गोन्डोर का सफेद वृक्ष
Hmong Tsob ntoo dawb ntawm Gondor
Hungarian Gondor fehér fája
Icelandic Hvítt tré af Gondor
Indonesian Putih pohon Gondor
Irish Gaelic Crann bán de Gondor
Italian Albero Bianco di Gondor
Japanese ゴンドールの白い木
Javanese Pohon Wit saka Gondor
Kannada ಗೊಂಡೋರ್ನ ವೈಟ್ ಟ್ರೀ
Kazakh Ақ ағашы Гондор (Cyrillic) Aq ağaşı Gondor (Latin)
Korean 곤도의 흰 나무
Latvian Gondoras balta koka
Lithuanian Baltas Gondoro medis
Macedonian Cyrillic Белото дрво на Гондор
Malagasy Hazo Fotsy ny Gondor
Malaysian Pokok putih Gondor
Maltese Siġra abjad tal-Gondor
Marathi व्हाईट ट्री ऑफ गोन्दोर
Mongolian Cyrillic Гондор-ийн Цагаан мод
Norwegian Gondorens Hvite tre
Persian درخت سفید از گاندور
Polish Białe Drzewo Gondoru
Portuguese Árvore branca de Gondor
Romanian Arbore alb de Gondsau
Russian Белое Древо Гондора
Samoan Paʻepaʻe Laau o Gondor
Scottish Gaelic Geal Craobh de Gondor
Serbian Бело Дрво Гондора (Cyrillic) Belo Drvo Gondora (Latin)
Sinhalese ගොඳොර් වල සුදු ගස
Slovak Biely strom Gondoru
Slovenian Bele drevo Gondorja
Spanish Árbol blanco de Gondor
Swahili Mti mweupe wa Gondor
Swedish Gondors Vita trädet - from Tolkiens Arda (a Swedish Tolkien Society)
Tamil கொண்டோரின் வெள்ளை மரம்
Telugu గోండోర్ యొక్క వైట్ ట్రీ
Turkish Gondor'un beyaz ağacı
Thai พฤกษาขาวแห่งกอนดอร์
Ukrainian Cyrillic Біле Дерево Гондору
Vietnamese Cây trắng của Gondor
Welsh Coeden Gwyn o Gondor
Yiddish ווייסע טרי פון גאָנדאָר
Yoruba Igi funfun ti Gondor

References

  1. The SilmarillionAkallabêth
  2. The SilmarillionOf the Rings of Power and the Third Age
  3. The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, Book Two, Ch. II: "The Council of Elrond"
  4. The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A: Annals of the Kings and Rulers, I: The Númenórean Kings, (iv): "Gondor and the Heirs of Anárion", The Stewards
  5. The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, Book Six, Ch. V: "The Steward and the King"
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