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-Grimgorironhide-
29-11-2009, 20:49
Greetings all.
I have been reading through the Silmarillion and I notice that many of the first age heroes and villians are much more powerful than the heroes and villians in the 3rd age.
Because of this I have been wondering how powerful Morgoth was when he began to take over Arda. I see Sauron as extremely powerful but how would he fare against Morgoth?
Questions I ask are:
-How skilled was Morgoth in hand to hand?
-How powerful was he?
-How skilled was he with "Magical" Powers?

cheers.

massey
29-11-2009, 21:39
Morgoth was Sauron's boss. He was older, wiser, more powerful. He's basically Satan.

Nuada
29-11-2009, 22:43
Both Sauron and Melkor are Ainur spirits.
There are two types of Ainur spirits. The Valar are greater Ainur, and the Maiar are lesser.

Melkor is the most powerfull of all the Valar. Sauron is only a Maiar spirit, same as Gandalf.

When the world is created by Eru, Melkor is the Valar that tries to change the song of creation.
Haven't read it for a while, but i do remember all the Valar struggle to restrain Melkor, and Tulkas is the only one strong enough to tackle him

Specific spells they never really go into. But there's the Dagor Bragollach (the battle of sudden flame), this involves a massive army of Noldor Elves outside Angband (Melkors fortress) and he kills most with flames/fumes, then dragons and balrogs finish them off.

He also has a hand in creating most (possibly all) the evil creatures personally. He made the red maw into the size he became, so this suggests he can poor his malice into these creatures. He creates trolls in mockery of ents. He creates Balrogs from Maiar fire spirits. Orcs from elves, etc

But he can't create anything new because he doesn't have the flame impresihable, he can only create creatues in mockery of those that already exist. He does actually go looking for the flame impresihable, or secret fire (you remember Gandalf says "I am a servant of the secret fire", this basically means he's a servant of Illuvatar or Eru... well this is the life-giving force that Eru uses to create Arda. Similar to a spark of life)

Edonil
30-11-2009, 01:33
One of the things consistent in discussing the servants of Eru is that while His power is limitless, their's is not. As time goes on, Melkor, Sauron and Saruman along with others 'invest' their power in objects- and never get it back. Granted, Saruman and Gandalf started with a lower base level than Melkor and Sauron, but without the Ring, Sauron is actually much, much weaker. Melkor, it was the same thing, he invested a lot in creating the Orcs and so many other things, that by the time the Third Age rolls around, he's a fraction of his original power

Iracundus
30-11-2009, 07:26
Melkor as stated by Tolkien was the single most powerful being under Iluvatar. He was the most powerful of the Valar and had a share of the talents of all of the other Valar. He was multi-talented though he may not have been the most skilled in any single area.

His prime contributions to the creation of the universe and Arda within it are the creation of evil, due to his music being in discord with the original theme as set forth by Iluvatar, and extremes of heat and cold. Tolkien's writings indicate Melkor was more of a "big sweeping ideas" type, and would have felt more at ease dealing with grand large scale things like a volcanic eruption rather than something small like flowers. Tolkien suggests such small creations were probably beneath Melkor's notice, and even if he were somehow to have had his attention drawn to them, he would only become angry and hate and want to destroy them since they were the products of thought other than his own.

In keeping with Tolkien's themes of Evil being fissiparous and sterile, Melkor cannot create anything genuinely new. He can only twist and mock existing things. In his attempts to dominate his underlings, a portion of his power is invested in them. Likewise he also attempts to dominate the physical substance of Arda itself so a large part of his power is invested into the actual world. Only the sum total of all this power adds up to the original Melkor. That is why he ends up being defeated again and again by the other Valar, because his shrunken core, ie his Morgoth form, retains only a fragment of his original vast power. However if all his power were in his core form as originally in the beginning, he also cannot accomplish his desires of trying to dominate the world. Again this is in keeping with Tolkien's themes that power ends up being risked in order for it to accomplish anything.

One key difference between Sauron and Morgoth/Melkor however is the fact that Melkor invested his power not just into a specific configuration of physical matter such as a specific ring of gold like Sauron did. The fundamental idea or "Platonic form" of certain things has been invested with Morgoth's power to varying degrees. Gold in particular was a substance and idea that Morgoth poured a lot of power into, explaining why gold arouses such greed and avarice in others. By contrast, other ideas that Morgoth had little interest in such as Water, is almost entirely free of his power. Since all of Arda has some fragment of Morgoth in it, it is also called Morgoth's Ring. Short of unmaking the world completely and all life on it, Morgoth's power cannot be removed as it is a part of the nature of Arda, but that is something the Valar cannot and will not do. That is why Morgoth is destined to return eventually, unlike Sauron, whose power has been scattered and dispersed beyond any hope of recovery with the destruction of the One Ring.

One key difference between the Valar and Morgoth is the Valar can accept and still love Arda and the things within it even if they have a Morgoth element. Morgoth by contrast wanted it all to himself, and could not accept only his original allotted part of having a partial share in the world. That is why Tolkien wrote that Morgoth's goals were ultimately futile even if nobody had stopped him. He would have hated and attempted to destroy anything that he did not create completely (i.e. the entire world). However he could never really unmake the world even if he had raged and beaten the world into a formless mass, as it would still have remained a world in potential with the original ideas and creations of the other Valar still existing in potential. He would have still been unable to attain his desire of a world in which he created or dominated everything completely.

canucklhead
30-11-2009, 17:53
Iracundus has given likely the best summary you'll get.

I can't think of much to add.

It's funny, since I'm currently re-reading the Silmarrillion, and I had the thought that the first parts of the book contain info any lover of the LOTR must have. These being:

The true identity of Gandalf, (Olorin), and what he was (most wise and powerful of the Maiar)
Just how Frackin powerful Galadriel really was, and how old.
What the Balrogs were (evil equivalents of the Maiar).
What a lucky SOB Sauron was, (surviving the fall of Melkor twice).

Iracundus
01-12-2009, 08:08
Gandalf/Olorin was not the most powerful of the Maiar. That was Sauron. Again this fits with Tolkien's theme as it is the most powerful of the Valar and the most powerful of the Maiar that fall into evil as their power and pride make them want to rule or dominate others. Olorin was perhaps the most wise in understanding and feeling compassion for mortals but Saruman was smarter and more cunning than him. Again the theme repeats as it is the smartest and originally most powerful of the Istari that Falls.

Hellfury
01-12-2009, 09:22
Gandalf/Olorin was not the most powerful of the Maiar. That was Sauron.

Agreed.

I beleive Olorin was trepidatious about going to middle earth at the request of Manwë to investigate Sauron's machinations because he was afraid of Sauron's might, admitting his weakness. He only went because Manwë commanded him to.

That is, if I recall the later chapters of the silmarillion correctly.

canucklhead
01-12-2009, 09:59
Actually, the specific wording of the Silmarillion has Olorin as the wisest and greatest of the Maiar, although he rarely appeared in a recognisable form before the third age, preferring to be a guiding spirit to the elves in their earliest days.

Like Melkor, Sauron diminished his power by creating things of power with it, but was more powerful than the sum of the parts when he had those items.

Simon Sez
01-12-2009, 12:48
I would have called Eonwe the greatest of the Maiar, after all he led the hosts of Aman against Morgoth's armies in the War of Wrath, and even Sauron acted humbly when he came before him.

Iracundus
01-12-2009, 13:45
Eonwe was herald of the Valar and acting as their representative. Sauron was a lone defeated supplicant on the losing side so of course he was humble before the victorious hosts of the enemy and their chosen spokesperson.

However he was stronger than Gandalf/Olorin. Sauron's superiority is why Saruman advised joining with Sauron because there seemed no obvious way in which the Istari could contend with Sauron's might. It is also why Sauron's fear was that someone would use the Ring and thus potentially gain the power to overthrow him, something which nobody could do without a boost in power.


The wasting away from evil is still apparent even with the Ring. Sauron, like Morgoth before him, gradually loses more of his abilities, such as the ability to assume a fair shape, or by the War of the Ring to assume any solid shape other than the burning Eye of Sauron.

Nuada
01-12-2009, 15:42
Actually, the specific wording of the Silmarillion has Olorin as the wisest and greatest of the Maiar.

I can only find this quote for Olórin ...."Wisest of the Maiar was Olórin. He too dwelt in Lórien, but his ways took him often to the house of Nienna..."

Olórin was supposed to be greatest of the Istari, but he was a humble character. Saruman was the first to arrive on Middle-Earth. He became jealous that Gandalf had an elven ring, it was Saruman that was the expert in rings of power.



Sauron and Eönwë do have a scene in the Silmarillion.... Eönwë was the most skilled warrior among the Maiar. Sauron surrendered to Eönwë after the War of Wrath, but Eönwë commanded him to seek pardon before the Valar. Instead Sauron fled and hid from Eönwë, and remained in Middle-Earth.

All the Maiar had different talents. Eönwë was the greatest in a battle, Gandalf was wise, Sauron could change into many forms and could appear fair and pleasing if he wished.

DarkMatter2
01-12-2009, 22:21
Sauron, like Morgoth before him, gradually loses more of his abilities, such as the ability to assume a fair shape, or by the War of the Ring to assume any solid shape other than the burning Eye of Sauron.


That is actually incorrect, and it is an error that Peter Jackson made in directing the film trilogy as well. Sauron definitely had solid, physical form by the time of the War of the Ring.

Gollum, for example, speaks of Sauron having four fingers on his Black Hand, a reference to the removal of the ring finger, in "The Black Gate is Closed"

There are multiple references within the book itself to the possibility of Sauron coming bodily to a place, for example to the siege of Minas Tirith or to the Black Gates.

In reference to Sauron's physical form towards the end of the LOTR, Tolkien wrote:

'Sauron should be thought of as very terrible. The form that he took was that of a man of more than human stature, but not gigantic.'

Tolkien also refers to the notion of Sauron's continual deaths and periods of re-forming:

'It is mythologically supposed that when this shape was 'real', that is a physical actuality in the physical world and not a vision transferred from mind to mind, it took some time to build up. After the battle with Gilgalad and Elendil, Sauron took a long while to re-build, longer than he had done after the Downfall of Númenor (I suppose because each building-up used up some of the inherent energy of the spirit, that might be called the 'will' or the effective link between the indestructible mind and being and the realization of its imagination).'


The Red Eye is simply a symbolic magical representation of Sauron's consciousness/presence and his ability to perceive hidden or distant events.

Nuada
01-12-2009, 22:39
I'm glad you mentioned that :) that's exactly why i started the Sauron as an eye topic in this section.

Frodo sees the lidless eye in the mirror of Galadriel. When Aragorn and company are outside the Black Gates they call out to Sauron, telling him to come forth. If he has no body, how can he?

Tolkien does say that Sauron has a physical form in the Third Age, he wrote this ....."Sauron should be thought of as very terrible. The form that he took was that of a man of more than human stature, but not gigantic" In Tolkiens illustrations he draws Sauron as a humanoid figure with black skin (as if burnt)

canucklhead
02-12-2009, 00:22
That quote also continues to add that olorin at first moved formless among the elves, or clad as one of them, and none knew whence came the visions and inspirations.

Later, in the third age, he became a friend to all children of Illuvatar, and any who spoke with him felt fear and hopelessness fade.

As to the part of Olorin fearing to go to middle earth on the part of Manwe, he feared that he might be caught up in the tendency to interfere over much in the affairs, like Sauron.

It is shown time and again that the first loss of Wisdom comes when the Wise stop counselling and begin leading. Saruman is the prime example.

Olorin, (Gandalf) remains the wisest of the Maiar, as he waited until the direst need to take any action, other than to counsel and assist when asked.

MontytheMighty
02-12-2009, 04:06
Eru is the supreme being

The Ainur are his "angels"

The greater Ainur are known as the Valar (sort of like the Seraphim or archangels) and the lesser Ainur are known as the Maiar (similar to lesser angels)

Melkor was the most powerful of the Valar, he's a lot like Lucifer
Manwe is comparable to the Archangel Michael

Tulkas is the greatest warrior among the Valar, I think he outwrestled Melkor once

Also there is Ungoliant


After their flight from Valinor, Melkor gave her many gems of the Noldor, but withheld the Silmarils in his right hand. He refused to give them to the Great Spider to be devoured, for he desired them greatly. So great had Ungoliant's power grown through the consumption of the two trees and the Wells of Varda, that she had grown greater than Melkor and overpowered him.Ungoliant might have either slain Melkor or encaged him in her darkness in the ensuing battle, but Melkor gave a great cry of fear that echoed over all of Beleriand, including the deep pits of Angband. Hearing his cry, the Balrogs came and saved their master, scourging the spider with their whips and causing Ungoliant to flee to the Ered Gorgoroth in Beleriand.Whilst there, she gave birth to the lesser Giant Spiders, as well as various creatures infesting the Ered Gorgoroth, which came to be a place of horror. The dates of her existence are not precisely known; in The Silmarillion, Quenta Silmarillion, Chapter 9, Of the Flight of the Noldor, we are told that she "went whither she would into the forgotten south of the world" shortly before the First Age, and that "some have said that she ended long ago, when in her uttermost famine she devoured herself at last." In contrast, a rough sketch of Eärendil's voyages by Tolkien suggests that he slew Ungoliant in the south.[edit] OriginUngoliant's origin and nature is unclear. Within the Silmarillion, it is said she was an evil being from "Before the World" that took on the form of a spider. In the book Morgoth's Ring, which is somewhat later in date than The Silmarillion, and expands upon it somewhat, Ungoliant is explicitly referred to as a servant of Melkor who had abandoned him.[citation needed]The great spiders of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings (including Shelob and the spiders encountered by Bilbo Baggins in Mirkwood) were descendants of Ungoliant.[1]

Condottiere
05-12-2009, 13:25
I always thought of the Elves as one of the lower orders of Angels that descended to the mortal sphere.

canucklhead
05-12-2009, 16:34
The elves were the first born. Their fate was to be tied to Arda, from the time of their awakening, until the ending. They were therefore most loved by the Valar, as they were most like them.

They were, however, completely part of Arda, and not of the Ainur. They differed from men in that men had the gift of mortality, and passed beyond Arda when they left their lives. In the beginning, this seemed a curse in comparison to the lives of the Eldar, but as the ages of Arda passed, and the weariness of it began to weigh down the firstborn, they grew to envy the short passing of mortality, and to understand its gift.

Nuada
05-12-2009, 19:12
That quote also continues to add that olorin at first moved formless among the elves......etc.....

Yeah i know, i was replying to something you said in a post. :)

You said ....."Actually, the specific wording of the Silmarillion has Olorin as the wisest and the greatest of the Maiar"

I can find where it says wisest, i couldn't find where it says Olorin was the greatest Maiar

Brandir
05-12-2009, 20:17
What do you mean by the term 'power'?

Professor Tolkien's idea of power is possibly different from that of a wargamer.

For example, Tulkas was considered the least powerful of the Valar yet he bested Melkor in combat.

The mightiest of those Ainur who came into the World was in his beginning Melkor ..... Greatest in strength and deeds of prowess is Tulkas .... Eönwë, the banner-bearer and herald of Manwë, whose might in arms is surpassed by none in Arda .... Wisest of the Maiar was Olórin. Quote taken from The Silmarillion Valaquenta.

Fingolfin was considered the best warrior but Fëanor was considered the mightiest Elf:

Fëanor was the mightiest in skill of word and of hand, more learned than his brothers; his spirit burned as a flame. Fingolfin was the strongest, most steadfast and the most valiant. Quote taken from The Silmarillion Chapter 5 Of Eldamar and the Princes of the Eldalië.

Fëanor ... Thus ended the mightiest of the Noldor .... Quote taken from The Silmarillion Chapter 13 Of the return of the Noldor.

canucklhead
05-12-2009, 22:24
You're dead right, I have no idea where I imagined the rest of that. Darned old age.

It can be argued that, in the context of Tolkien's literature, wisdom is always the greatest asset a being can have. The Wisest do succeed, in the end, and even what harm is done by evil turns to the good, as was shown at the beggining by Eru Illuvatar.

The Raising of the Shire at the end of ROTK was the last demonstration of that concept. Although great harm was done, the hobbits came together, became more aware of and integrated into middle Earth, and the Fellowship Hobbits grew in stature and respect as a result.

Eumerin
06-12-2009, 07:08
Olórin was supposed to be greatest of the Istari, but he was a humble character. Saruman was the first to arrive on Middle-Earth.

With regards to Saruman - not exactly. He was paired with Radagast in order to try and keep him humble. Obviously that didn't work out too well. iirc, the other two wizards were also paired together, although we don't know anything about them. Of the five, only Gandalf was sent without a partner.

canucklhead
06-12-2009, 12:17
And Saruman was the first to arrive when it was decided to send a specific group of Maiar as counsel to the peoples of middle earth.

Maiar had lived there and journeyed there beforehand.

Nuada
06-12-2009, 20:14
With regards to Saruman - not exactly. He was paired with Radagast in order to try and keep him humble. Obviously that didn't work out too well. iirc, the other two wizards were also paired together, although we don't know anything about them. Of the five, only Gandalf was sent without a partner.

Curumo (Saruman) was the first to arrive on Middle-earth, Olórin (Gandalf) was the last.

There was a council of the Valar, called by Manwë. At which it was resolved to send out three emissaries to Middle-earth. Only two came forward; Curumo, chosen by Aulë, and Alatar, chosen by Oromë.
Manwë then asked if Olórin would go as the third. Olórin replied that he thought he was too weak for the task, and he feared Sauron. Manwë said that that was all the more reason why he should go.
The reason Curumo takes Aiwendil (Radagast) is because Yavanna begged him. Yavanna is the wife of Aulë. Saruman didn't like Radagast
Alatar took Pallando as a friend (also to Oromë)

We know a little bit about the two blue wizards. We know they weren't known by name in the West of Middle-earth, but they are named by JRR Tolkien. They both passed into the East with Saruman, but they never returned, and whether they remained in the East, pursuing the purpose for which they were sent; or perished; or as some hold were ensnared by Sauron and became his servants, is not known.

Brandir
06-12-2009, 20:27
The two blue wizards did indeed go to the East with Saruman. When I first read this I formed the impression that Saruman disposed of them, showing his evil had started from an very early stage. Unfortunately I can't seem to find any evidence of this - I may have just made it up!

In Letters I did find the following:

'Question 3': What were the colours of the two wizards mentioned but not named in the book?
I really do not know anything clearly about the other two – since they do not concern the history of the N.W. I think they went as emissaries to distant regions, East and South, far out of Númenórean range: missionaries to 'enemy-occupied' lands, as it were. What success they had I do not know; but I fear that they failed, as Saruman did, though doubtless in different ways; and I suspect they were founders or beginners of secret cults and 'magic' traditions that outlasted the fall of Sauron.
Quote taken from Letters of JRR Tolkien Letter 211 To Rhona Beare dated 14 Oct 58.

But I also seem to remember reading that the two Blue Wizards succeeded in their task and that the reason the West was not overwhelmed form the East was that the Blue Wizards stopped Sauron's influence spreading too far there.

Also, in Unfinished Tales there are snippets, one of which is:

Whereas in the essay on the Istari it is said that the two who passed into the East had no names save Ithryn Luin "the Blue Wizards" (meaning of course that they had no names in the West of Middle-earth), here they are named, as Alatar and Pallando, and are associated with Oromë, though no hint is given of the reason for this relationship. It might be (though this is the merest guess) that Oromë of all Valar had the greatest knowledge of the further parts of Middle-earth, and that the Blue Wizards were destined to journey in those regions and to remain there. Quote taken from Unfinished Tales Chapter Ii The Istari.

Nuada
06-12-2009, 21:39
Something i've always thought strange about Gandalf is.... "was he mistaken for an elf?"

His name means "the Elf of the Wand", because the Northmen mistook him for an elf. Not many elves have a massive white beard (Cirdan the Telerin elf has a beard)

Did Gandalf go through a clean-shaven phase? :D

Brandir
06-12-2009, 21:43
Interesting observation Nuada.

One possible reason:

Círdan was the public face of the Grey Havens and the one Elf that the Northmen would see. They didn't therefore know any better so thought that Gandalf was an Elf.

Just a thought!

canucklhead
07-12-2009, 00:02
Gandalf, or Olorin at least, also took the form of an elf before he was Gandalf. He would wander among the elves, clad as one of them, giving counsel.

Nuada
07-12-2009, 10:30
Gandalf, or Olorin at least, also took the form of an elf before he was Gandalf. He would wander among the elves, clad as one of them, giving counsel.

I think that's when Olórin is walking amongst the Elves on Aman though (the Undying Lands) When Olórin is sent to Middle-earth that's the first time he's been there.

On Aman there's Noldor, Teleri and Vanyar elves

brightblade
07-12-2009, 11:57
I would have called Eonwe the greatest of the Maiar, after all he led the hosts of Aman against Morgoth's armies in the War of Wrath, and even Sauron acted humbly when he came before him.

In terms of 'greatness' what is it?

With maia, Eonwe was the herald and leader of the hosts and no doubt the greatest in terms of generalship and military power.

In terms of physical greatness it has to be Tulkas, Osse is the singer, in terms of wisdom it is Olorin and so on. But which has the 'greatest' combination of all these attributes (and more) then it is Sauron and for the same reason,with Valar, Melkor.

One of Tolkiens major themes is that 'greatness' brings low the mighty. Melkor and Sauron both sought a freedom, from the creation as seen by Eru, a freedom to create as they wanted. It is the belief that they were right to assume their path was correct and justified that led them to fall and, ironically, diminish their power as they invested it in their attempt to reshape Arda.

Melkor was only brought down by the combined might of the Host of the Valar and changed the plan of Eru as soon as he turned away from it. Powerful indeed.

Or did he turn away? Was it all part of the plan? Did Eru know how it would all turn out and it was some grand experiment of his? :D That is an entirely different debate found in theological circles. Surely something that Tolkien himself mused upon?

Bottom line. Melkor was the first of the Valar, the most gifted in craft, the most wide reaching in thought, the strongest of arm but also the most conceited and the most arrogant but without doubt the most powerful.

Gandalf as elf? Hmmm? Never thought about it? Would make some sense that man would assume he was 'elf-ish' after all you couldn't see his ears under that hat and all that hair. ;)

Condottiere
07-12-2009, 14:14
Problem with asking if Melkor's rebellion was part of the design goes back to the question if the Creator being all-powerful, wouldn't or couldn't control or predict this creation.

Melkor had great gifts and was given the freedom to utilize them as he pleased - from our perspective, he didn't seem to make wise choices.

brightblade
07-12-2009, 23:29
I completely agree.
And the 'all powerful question' is probably out of bounds for Warseer!:)

Condottiere
08-12-2009, 12:48
At least outside the Wastes.

Iracundus
08-12-2009, 16:34
Problem with asking if Melkor's rebellion was part of the design goes back to the question if the Creator being all-powerful, wouldn't or couldn't control or predict this creation.


When Melkor first introduced discord into the original music, Iluvatar said that there was nothing Melkor could introduce that did not have its uttermost source within Iluvatar, and that it would only lead to greater wonders and greater glories for Iluvatar than Melkor could imagine. These words shamed Melkor and first began his anger.

Basically Iluvatar's words stated that even in attempting evil, Melkor's works and ideas would ultimately inspire or cause greater beauty and good to spring forth. An example would be Melkor's ideas of extreme heat and cold, which in turn modified the idea of Water to create things like snow, iceflakes, and rain and weather, not originally encompassed with the creation of Water.

canucklhead
08-12-2009, 19:17
Exactly, and in a larger sense, bringing conflict led men and elves to develop concepts of loyalty and steadfastness. They became more, appreciated more, in the face of Melkor's deceits and hatred.

brightblade
10-12-2009, 08:44
Acts of good have no meaning without something to compare them to. Despair gives hope meaning. And so on.

So, was Melkor's 'rebellion' outside of Eru's plan? Had Eru's plan run its' course once the Ainur entered Arda and from then Eru was just seeing what happened? What impact does all this have on free will?

Tune in next week for more of 'White Council's Question Time.' ;)

Iracundus
12-12-2009, 07:36
So, was Melkor's 'rebellion' outside of Eru's plan? Had Eru's plan run its' course once the Ainur entered Arda and from then Eru was just seeing what happened? What impact does all this have on free will?


The first question comes down then to the longstanding question of where Evil comes from if God is supposed to be benevolent yet also the source of everything. Tolkien seems to have subscribed to the Augustinian view that Evil is not a tangible force but rather the lack of good, just as "cold" is the lack of heat.

Eru's plan doesn't seem to have run anywhere near its course since it supposedly runs til the end of Time, though it seems to have been modified. The Ainur entering the world were enacting what they had already done in the Music. They had already exercised their free will in embellishing the Music with their own creativity, and were bringing their embellishments into separate existence by their actions in the world.

The Children of Iluvatar were special however in that they were not in the Music and so the Ainur did not know of them beforehand. They also had the gift of free will and could therefore act outside the confines of the Music.

Dragon Prince of Caledor
24-12-2009, 02:25
Melkor was a Valar... Almost on par with Manwe in terms of his power... Melkor was rediculously powerful... That is all for now :P

Volse11
19-01-2014, 18:56
Melkor was, in his origin, the most powerful being Eru ever created.

Karak Norn Clansman
21-01-2014, 18:53
He also trotted around the world as a giant glazier-covered volcano with hurricanes and lightning surrounding him, smashing the works of the Valar through eternal ages before the sun.

You gotta have geological processes even in mythology. :D

Of course, Melkor is still vastly inferior to Dwarves. Like everyone else.

jprp
25-02-2014, 21:48
What you have to realise with the Tolkien universe as it stands today is that all of the most important history was never finalised by JRR-he constantly wrote different drafts of events/legends within the history.
The Silmarillion was never finished like LOTR but his son Chris pulled together the most coherent drafts he could to produce a publishable work.
If you read the more recent books Chris has compiled they offer many contradictory takes on themes in the published Silmarilion some older than the published versions some more recent, many of which Chris hadn`t studied before the Silmarillion was published. For fans of the writing this is great but for Gamers it is very confusing.
It must be remebered that just as LOTR is an account by Bilbo and Frodo of events, the Silmarillion is a record by the Elves (so not necessarily true, but the "accepted wizdom" of the first born)the Valar would no doubt know more about certain events.
These stories were meant to be legends, so many things do not translate easily to role-play/gaming stats.
As far as The published Silmarillion goes Morgoth is in the begging the most powerfull being in the world (Eru isn`t in the world-he has given "governance" of the little kingdom to the Valar).
In the "expanded writings" it is stated that Tolkien intended to go back and make Melkor much more powerfull in the beginning, so much that Manwe could not bear his gaze and was daunted by his might.
In the Silmarillion there is mention of Melkor "descending in a great burning" this was to be expanded so that when he declares that the world will be his alone forever, he decends into the earth and puts forth his powers into all the very fabrics of the earth (i say "earth" as in land as opposed to the seas or the air) this greatly diminishes his personal power but allows him to cause volcanic eruptios and so on and means that later when he is cast out his evil cant be removed from the world.
As several people have said "what is power", in the beginning M is the most powerfull period. Later when he is diminished Tulkas turns up and it would appear that all his power is in his physical manifestation rather than "magical" powers, at this time he (T) is the physically most powerfull individual on the planet though M is more powerfull overall - like worlds strongest man is powerfull and could crush Obama but Obama has command of US armed forces. In whfb Nagash is arguably the most powerfull individual but Sigmar (no magic powers) defeats him.
Hope that helps a bit.

Horus38
14-03-2014, 17:55
What you have to realise with the Tolkien universe as it stands today is that all of the most important history was never finalised by JRR-he constantly wrote different drafts of events/legends within the history.
The Silmarillion was never finished like LOTR but his son Chris pulled together the most coherent drafts he could to produce a publishable work.
If you read the more recent books Chris has compiled they offer many contradictory takes on themes in the published Silmarilion some older than the published versions some more recent, many of which Chris hadn`t studied before the Silmarillion was published. For fans of the writing this is great but for Gamers it is very confusing.
It must be remebered that just as LOTR is an account by Bilbo and Frodo of events, the Silmarillion is a record by the Elves (so not necessarily true, but the "accepted wizdom" of the first born)the Valar would no doubt know more about certain events.
These stories were meant to be legends, so many things do not translate easily to role-play/gaming stats.
As far as The published Silmarillion goes Morgoth is in the begging the most powerfull being in the world (Eru isn`t in the world-he has given "governance" of the little kingdom to the Valar).
In the "expanded writings" it is stated that Tolkien intended to go back and make Melkor much more powerfull in the beginning, so much that Manwe could not bear his gaze and was daunted by his might.
In the Silmarillion there is mention of Melkor "descending in a great burning" this was to be expanded so that when he declares that the world will be his alone forever, he decends into the earth and puts forth his powers into all the very fabrics of the earth (i say "earth" as in land as opposed to the seas or the air) this greatly diminishes his personal power but allows him to cause volcanic eruptios and so on and means that later when he is cast out his evil cant be removed from the world.
As several people have said "what is power", in the beginning M is the most powerfull period. Later when he is diminished Tulkas turns up and it would appear that all his power is in his physical manifestation rather than "magical" powers, at this time he (T) is the physically most powerfull individual on the planet though M is more powerfull overall - like worlds strongest man is powerfull and could crush Obama but Obama has command of US armed forces. In whfb Nagash is arguably the most powerfull individual but Sigmar (no magic powers) defeats him.
Hope that helps a bit.

Great insights, thanks! Although you'd be hard pressed to convince me Nagash is/was the most powerful WHFB individual :p