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Lord of The Rings: Rings of Power – Who Is Gil-Galad?

By Rishabh Shandilya
August 22,2022

Fans and binge-watchers might still have the chance to brush up on as much information as possible before the streaming giant hits the release switch. There’s a huge amount of backstory to investigate. The difficulty is in choosing where to start. Just who are these people, exactly?  Where are these places exactly? Why there are these weird brightly illuminated trees of such a massive size: why?

Lord of The Rings: Rings of Power Gil-Galad

But, that’s the story for another day, today will focus this piece on the Elven king Gil-galad.

Who Was Gil-Galad?

Gil-galad was an Elven-king.Of him the harpers sadly sing; the last whose realm was fair and freebetween the Mountains and the Sea. His sword was long, his lance was keen. His shining helm afar was seen;the countless stars of heaven’s fieldwere mirrored in his silver shield. But long ago he rode away,and where he dwelleth none can say;for into darkness fell his starin Mordor where the shadows are.

In Middle-earth, Gil-galad reigned as High King of the Elves. In the upcoming Rings of Power miniseries, Abraham Lincon Vampire Hunter alum Benjamin Walkers has been trusted with the role. However, there are a few things that we can say with certainty about the show even though we don’t know all that will be presented.

Lord of The Rings: Rings of Power Gil-Galad

The name of the series gives away the plot twist that the protagonists will be making the rings of power. Thus, we anticipate hearing from many of the key characters at that time, including Gil-galad, and Calebrimbor throughout the course of the show.

This show will explore the events of the Second Age.  Following the creation of the realm of Arda, by Eru Ilúvatar,  the earth entered its first numbered era, known as the Years of the Lamps, during which two enormous lamps perched atop towers provided artificial light for mankind. Once the lights were out, that era ended. When two enormous trees were fashioned and flooded with brightness, darkness was dispelled once more. This started the Years of the Trees, marking the birth of the great Elven King.

Lord of The Rings: Rings of Power Gil-Galad

As one of the final remaining Elves in the realm, Gil-galad was unfortunately too young to witness the trees in all their splendor before they died. The Age of Trees came to a close, marking the birth of the First Era. It wasn’t until late in the Second Age, when The Rings of Power is set, that Gil-galad finally passed away.

We know that Elves are immortal, and live considerably longer compared to humans. the high Elven king must’ve been tens of thousands of years old when he died.

How Gil-Galad Factors Into Rings of Power

Lord of The Rings: Rings of Power Gil-Galad

Gil-galad was younger than Galadriel, another prominent figure in the series. She was his grand aunt and a far more formidable magician than the former. Because of her family’s prominence and influence, she and her spouse eventually came to dominate territory in Middle-earth. Gil-galad handed Galadriel the first of the three rings of power he had obtained.

Even Galadriel’s husband, Elrond, was related to Gil-galad via a long line of ancestors. As Elrond was left orphaned during the War of Wrath, Gil-galad took him under his wing and made him his harbinger. Gil-galad eventually contacted Elrond for assistance when Mordor attacked Middle-earth. In the event, Gil-galad was defeated, and Elrond founded and ruled over Rivendell.

Lord of The Rings: Rings of Power Gil-Galad

The Elven King and the Dark Lord shared a long and complicated past, one that included the master craftsman Celebrimbor and the mighty realm of Nmenor. For all his might, the Dark Lord was just a lower-ranking apprentice.  He vanished for a while following the Battle, only to reappear cloaked as Annatar.

He seemed affable and engaging, but the Elven king had a bad feeling about him, and rejected him and cautioned his Elven relatives to stay away from him. Yet the ring maker ignored the signs and instead greeted Sauron with open arms.

Lord of The Rings: Rings of Power Gil-Galad

Mordor, in his guise as Annatar, persuaded the talented artisan Celebrimbor to make the rings of power that were to be given to the Dwarves as well as the Men. Celebrimbor did, though, secretly made three of the most powerful rings solely for his kind.

Celebrimbor, recognizing his error upon learning that Annatar was indeed Mordor, bestowed Gil-galad with the rings of power. Gil-galad presented Elrond with one as well as one of his commanders with the other. The third was given to Galadriel, who used it to fuel her tremendous strength.