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Timeline Event

Divisions among Númenóreans

Event Type: Cultural/Social

Age: 2nd Age - Rings

Year: 2251

"Tar-Atanamir takes the sceptre. Rebellion and division of the Númenoreans begins."

Note that Appendix B disagrees with The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales here: In note 10 of The Line of Elros: Kings of Numenor, Christopher Tolkien indicates that 2251 should be the correct date of death, not accession, of Tar-Atanamir; and that App B should read: "2251 Death of Tar-Atanamir. Tar-Ancalimon takes the sceptre. Rebellion and division of the Númenoreans begins." He points out that this is supported by the Akallabêth where is said that the division began in the time of Tar-Ancalimon.

Unfinished Tales, Part 2, Ch 3, The Line of Elros, Kings of Númenor

Then Tar-Ancalimon, son of Atanamir, became King...; and in his day the people of Númenor became divided. On the one hand was the greater party, and they were called the King's Men, and they grew proud and were estranged from the Eldar and the Valar. And on the other hand was the lesser party, and they were called the Elendili, the Elf-friends; for though they remained loyal indeed to the King and the House of Elros, they wished to keep the friendship of the Eldar, and they hearkened to the counsel of the Lords of the West. Nonetheless even they, who named themselves the Faithful, did not wholly escape from the affliction of their people, and they were troubled by the thought of death.

Thus the bliss of Westernesse became diminished; but still its might and splendour increased. For the kings and their people had not yet abandoned wisdom, and if they loved the Valar no longer at least they still feared them. They did not dare openly to break the Ban or to sail beyond the limits that had been appointed. Eastwards still they steered their tall ships. But the fear of death grew ever darker upon them, and they delayed it by all means that they could; and they began to build great houses for their dead, while their wise men laboured unceasingly to discover if they might the secret of recalling life, or at the least of the prolonging of Men's days. Yet they achieved only the art of preserving incorrupt the dead flesh of Men, and they filled all the land with silent tombs in which the thought of death was enshrined in the darkness. But those that lived turned the more eagerly to pleasure and revelry, desiring ever more goods and more riches; and after the days of Tar-Ancalimon the offering of the first fruits to Eru was neglected, and men went seldom any more to the Hallow upon the heights of Meneltarma in the midst of the land.

The Silmarillion, Akallabêth

Anglachel - 3.16.03
Disputed date information added by Lyllyn 5.09.03
added quote: Elena Tiriel 26Feb05

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