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Ted Nasmith - The Nauglamir.jpg
"The Nauglamír" by Ted Nasmith
Other names"Necklace of the Dwarves"
Sigil Elu-naeth (S)
LocationNargothrond, Doriath, Mouths of Sirion
OwnerFinrod, Thingol, Lúthien, Dior, Elwing
AppearanceCarcanet of gold, and set therein were gems uncounted from Valinor; later set with a Silmaril
CreatorCraftsmen of Nogrod and Belegost
Blue Mountains
Notable forContaining a Silmaril
GalleryImages of the Nauglamír

The Nauglamír or Necklace of the Dwarves was a famed piece of jewellery; combined with the craft of Dwarves and gems from Valinor, it was of great grace and beauty which it gave to its wearer. Despite being loaded with gems, it sat lightly on the neck.[1]

It later bore the Silmaril rescued by Beren from the Iron Crown, and it became jewellery more beautiful than anything ever before seen in Arda. But because of the Silmaril it was coveted by the Sons of Fëanor and entangled in the Doom of the Noldor.


[edit] History

The Nauglamír was made for Finrod by Dwarves of the Ered Luin and was the most renowned of their works in that age. They fastened on it gems that Finrod brought from Valinor.[1] It was his most prized treasure in Nargothrond and the most famed Dwarven work of the Elder Days.[2]

During and after the Fall of Nargothrond[3] the Nauglamír remained therefore forgotten in the hoard of Glaurung. Húrin Thalion found it and brought the famous treasure to the Kingdom of Doriath, and threw it on the floor, bitterly "thanking" Thingol for fostering his son and wife. When Húrin left, Dwarves of Nogrod had been invited to Menegroth by Thingol and decided to refashion it and fasten the Silmaril of Lúthien and Beren on it.[2]

The Request of Thingol by Peter Xavier Price

The Dwarves were enthralled by its gems and of course the Silmaril, and demanded it from Thingol, claiming it as just payment for their labours. Thingol realized that they wished to possess the Silmaril, and sent them from Doriath without any payment, an event which led directly to his murder. The Dwarves fled, only to be slaughtered by the avenging Elves who killed all but two and returned the Nauglamír to Doriath. However a great host from Nogrod, roused to war, and begun the Battle of the Thousand Caves, stealing the entire treasure of Doriath including the Nauglamír. But they were waylaid by Beren Erchamion at Sarn Athrad. The Dwarves were all slain, and the treasure was cast into the River Ascar, except for the Nauglamír, which Beren took to Lúthien.[2]

Lúthien wore the Nauglamír for the rest of her life, their combining beauty being the fairest beauty east of Valinor. At her second death, a Lord of the Green-elves brought it to her son, Dior, back to Doriath; but when the Sons of Fëanor heard about its whereabouts, they attacked Doriath in an attempt to claim the Silmaril in the Second Kinslaying where Dior was killed. This attempt failed, as Dior's daughter Elwing fled to the Havens of Sirion saving the Nauglamír.[2]

Elwing with Nauglamir by Svirina Vera

The Sons of Fëanor were still after the Silmaril, and attacked the Mouths of Sirion, resulting in the Third Kinslaying. Elwing cast herself into the sea with it. It is not known what happened to the Nauglamír itself, but Elwing and the Silmaril were saved by Ulmo who brought her in the form of a bird to Eärendil her husband; it was its light that guided him through the Shadowy Seas and he found his way to Valinor. The Valar then set this Silmaril as a Star and it was worn on his brow.[4]

[edit] Etymology

Nauglamír is formed from the words naug ("dwarf") + mîr ("jewel").[5] In the Etymologies the word nauglamîr is listed as Doriathrin,[6] while the true Noldorin idiom is said to be Mîr na Nauglin or Nauglvir (-> Nauglavir).[7]

The necklace was also known as Sigil Elu-naeth ("Necklace of the Woe of Thingol").[8]

[edit] Other versions of the legendarium

In The Book of Lost Tales, the Nauglafring, is described as an even more important object: it more directly causes the death of Thingol as it gets caught behind a tree branch when Thingol is riding outside the Girdle of Melian and is attacked by the Dwarves. Thingol, unhorsed, is slain, after which Melian's protection is lifted and Doriath is sacked.[9]

Nauglafring or Fring na Nauglithon is Gnomish for "Necklace of the Dwarves", from naugl- ("dwarf") + fring ("carcanet, necklace").[10] The Qenya cognate was Firin Nautaron.[11]


  1. 1.0 1.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of the Return of the Noldor"
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of the Ruin of Doriath"
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of Túrin Turambar"
  4. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Quenta Silmarillion: Of the Voyage of Eärendil and the War of Wrath"
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Appendix: Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names", entries mîr, naug
  6. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lost Road and Other Writings, Part Three: "The Etymologies", p. 373, entry "MIR-")
  7. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lost Road and Other Writings, Part Three: "The Etymologies", p. 375, entry "NAUK-" (note that Christopher Tolkien uses the capitalized form of Mîr in the Index, cf. p. 442)
  8. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The War of the Jewels, "Part Three. The Wanderings of Húrin and Other Writings not forming part of the Quenta Silmarillion: I. The Wanderings of Húrin", p. 258
  9. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Book of Lost Tales Part Two, "IV. The Nauglafring"
  10. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Book of Lost Tales Part Two, "Appendix: Names in the Lost Tales – Part II", entry "Nauglafring"
  11. J.R.R. Tolkien, "Sí Qente Feanor and Other Elvish Writings", in Parma Eldalamberon XV (edited by Christopher Gilson, Arden R. Smith, Patrick H. Wynne, and Bill Welden), p. 15