Army List Notes: Noldor

The Noldor after returning to Middle-earth quickly established several princedoms. Hithlum was ruled by High-King Fingolfin, with Dor-Lomin being held by his elder son Fingon. After Fingolfin's death, Dor-Lomin was held as a fief by the Edain - men serving the Elves. Both were lost after Nirnaeth Arnoediad, 'the Fifth Battle'. Nevrast was ruled by his younger son Turgon, until his founding of Gondolin (which is covered by a separate list).

Dorthonion was held by the brothers Angrod and Aegnor until lost in during Dagor Bragollach, 'the Fourth Battle'. Their elder brother Finrod held Nargothrond until his death, after which it was ruled, in name, by their youngest brother Orodreth. Dorthonion is used in these lists also to include the lands around Tol Sirion, although this was ruled by Orodreth until its fall to Sauron.

Himlad was ruled by the brothers Celegorm and Curufin until they were defeated and joined Finrod in Nargothrond. Himring was ruled by their eldest brother Maedhros, and Lothlann by another brother, Maglor, until he was driven out and joined Maedhros. East Beleriand was ruled by their two youngest brothers, Amorod and Amras, but their people were too few to count as a realm until strengthened by those of their brother Caranthir fleeing over-run Thargelion.

In the second age, all the Noldor in Middle-Earth acknowledged Gil-galad of Lindon, son of Fingon, as High-King, but a great portion of them dwelt in Eregion near Moria, chief of whom was Celebrimbor, son of Curufin. By the third age, after Gil-galad's death, the Noldor left in Middle-earth were too few to count as a full realm, although the list continues so that remnant outposts may provide allied contingents to other lists. One of these was Rivendell under Elrond Half-Elven (great-great-grandson of Fingolfin), founded when Eregion was destroyed by Sauron. The others was Lindon, which had the Sindarin Elf Cirdan as its lord.

Climate is rated Cold since the Noldorin realms were all in the north of Middle-Earth.

Agression is rated highly in 1A, although not 4, since they were were on the defensive after the Seige of Angband was broken. After 1A, the Noldor were mostly defensive, although Gil-galad expanded his holdings while Sauron was captive in Numenor, and so are not rated as 0 (Sil, p349).

Of the 1A realms, only Hithlum and Nevrast bordered the sea, as did Lindon in 2A, therefore they are allowed a WW (all the rivers being too small to qualify). Caranthir's city in Thragelion was by Lake Helevorn, which saw an attack, so it also quailfies, as do Noldorin forces before the founding of the princedoms, based as they were in Nevrast and Drengist.

All had rivers, hills and/or mountains and woods, and built roads and towns. The M represents the Marshes of Nevrast around Linaewen. Orchards are allowed to all, being settled peoples, but Hithlum and Dor-Lomin appear to be too cold for grapes, so they are not allowed V. As enclosed fields take time to appear, I have not allowed them to Nevrast (Turgon removed to Gondolin after a relatively short time, and it was left abandoned after his departure) or prior to the founding of the princedoms.

Noldorin forces were generally a mixture of cavalry and infantry. Cavalry was quite numerous (Sil, p147), although prior to the founding of the princedoms, horses were few (Sil, p141). Some charged swiftly (Sil, p230), but most were horse archers (Sil, p138, 193). Charging cavalry are assumed to be those that carried spears (Sil, p213); they are graded as Kn (F) since even the highest nobility used mail which is never mentioned as being 'full', unlike that of the knights of Gondor (eg. Sil, p184).

Horse archers are graded as LH (F) rather than Cv (O) since they are described as riding and circling swiftly (Sil, p138), and because Glorfindel's horse was very light and fleet (FotR, p284). The option for a sub-general to be a horse-archer is because Prince Fingon so led them against Glaurung (Sil, p138).

Other generals were either spear-armed, and on horseback, and are classified as Kn (F), such as Celegorm (Sil, p213), or swordsmen, such as Feanor (Sil, p81, 126) or Maedhros (Sil, p131), or in the case of Hurin, the man most highly-placed in 1A armies, an axeman. Gil-galad's spear was named Aeglos (Sil, p354). Mounted generals and their guards often however fought on foot (Sil, p233), and can so dismount as Sp. I have graded them as (S) when they do so, to make them better than the average spearman. Generals who fought with sword or axe could be mounted (Sil, p184; UT, p65).

Noldorin infantry are described as swordsmen (Sil, p230; UT, p21). They carried shields (Sil, p81), and on the whole are described as advancing rapidly (Sil, p126, 230) and since secondary weapons are not mentioned, a grading of Bd (F) seems best. As the Noldor of Gondolin were spearmen, the possibility exists that other Noldor infantry included spearmen too, although this is nowhere directly attested.

While Noldor archers are always described as horsed, many Sindar were to be found in Noldorin armies (Sil, p142) and these would have provided both archers on foot, and axemen (Sil, p18).

Camp defences are mentioned (Sil, p125).

Dwarves helped the Noldor on many occasions, with both armaments (eg. Sil, p227) and allied forces (Sil, p232, 354).

The Laiquendi or Green-Elves gave aid to the sons of Feanor (Sil, p184); Finrod of Nargothrond also had their friendship (Sil, p148), and later, under the influence of Celegorm and Curufin, Nargothrond adopted a stategy of fighting ambushes rather than pitched-battles (Sil, p204, 254).

Although Edain had their own leaders (Sil, p177), they were not independent enough to be classified as allies - indeed, Hurin, their most famous leader, is allowed as a regular sub-general since he was influential in deciding battlefield dispositions. They could be mounted, along with their household men (UT, p65), but the vast majority fought on foot. A few were Haladin, who excelled in forest warfare (Sil, p177; UT, p377) and are therefore graded as Ax; Haladin guards existed, some even female (UT, p377), and because of this, and because some used axes (Sil, p228), dome may be classified as Ax (S). Most however were from the house of Hador, or in Dorthonion, the house of Beor, using spears (Sil, p182), shields and axes (Sil, p234; UT, p19) in close formation (Sil, p171, 182). Many thousands served in the armies of the Noldor (Sil, p173, 178, 180).

Other Mannish contingents are classified as allies because of the possibility of treachery (Sil, p189, 232).

Gondolin allies are treated as a sub-general, since they were under command of Turgon, the High-King's son (Sil, p229). Turgon may command Edain, since their leaders, Hurin and Huor, had stayed with him when young, and chose to make their last stand with him (Sil, p234).

Unsanctioned nobles represent those from Nargothrond that served under Fingon without permission from their king (Orodreth), and who charged impetuously at the start of the Nirnaith Arnoediad. I am not sure if this warrents making them Irr, since Reg Kn must follow up sacrificial Hd (I) anyway, but is probably more realistic.

Cirdan once came to the rescue of Fingon by sailing up the Firth of Drengist (Sil, p193).

In the second age, the Sindarin realms, while acknowledged the supremacy of Gil-galad and fighting for his cause, were not apt to taking orders, and are therefore classified as allies (UT, p258).

The Numenoreans aided Gil-galad against Sauron frequently, at first in small numbers, in ships (RotK, p454; UT, p239), later in greater numbers (UT, p239) in which case they are classified as allies.

Third age forces from Rivendell once included a contingent from Lorien (RotK, p390).

The House of Feanor had a star as its symbol (FotR, p397), the 7 sons of Feanor may have probably had helms with red plumes (Sil, p81). Fingolfin had blue and silver banners (Sil, p128), and he himself had silvered mail, and a blue shield set with crystals (Sil, p184). Fingon's banner was blue and silver (Sil, p233). Some Sindar from Hithlum used the Swan as their emblem (UT, p25). Hurin of Dor-Lomin's banner was golden (UT, p65). Gil-galad's shield was silvered and set with a device of white stars on a blue rondure (UT, p199, 217). Rivendell's banner was silver (RotK, p304).

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This page last modified 17 January, 2002