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Joined: 01 Jun 2004
Posts: 227
Location: Annúminas

PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2004 3:31 pm    Post subject: Rangers Reply with quote

Hi all there,
I just wondered about the fact that I found almost nothing about them. How much information did Tolkien give us about them?

In my opinion the the Rangers were very important to the whole storyline. In the quest itself, but also around it. I think that without the Rangers protecting the Shire, it would have fallen like all else in Eriador.

The rangers worked so hard to maintain everything in the Shire (or its security) like it was in the time of Arnor and they never even got a simple "thank you".
I think that it is kind of sad. I'd really love to know more about these misterious people.

***Pervy Halbarad fancier***
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Location: Watching the purple sky fly over me ...

PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2004 4:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

First of all, welcome to the site! Second, this is what I found about Rangers ... it's from the book "The Complete Guide to Middle Earth" ...

Rangers of the North
Those of the Dúnedain of the North who guarded Eriador from Orcs, wild animals, and other evil things after the fall of Arthedain. The Rangers gave special protection to the Shire, especially during the period just before the WR. It seems that most of the male Dúnedain were Rangers, and that they were led by the Chieftain of the Dúnedain, who was the heir of Isildur.

The Rangers were grim in life, appearance, and dress. They wore grey or dark green cloaks, with no ornament save for a cloak-clasp shaped like a six-pointed star. The Rangers rode rough-haired, sturdy horses and carried spears, bows, and swords.

The Hobbits of the Shire called them the Watchers or the Watchers at Sarn Ford; they were generally considered rather disreputable in the Shire and Bree.

Rangers of Ithilien
Soldiers of Gondor, Dunédain descended from the inhabitants of Ithilien. After Ithilien was overrun by Orcsi n 2901 the Rangers crossed the Anduin from time to time to harry Sauron’s forces in Ithilien. They used various secret retreats, of which the most important was Henneth Annun. At the time of the WR, Faramir was the Captain of the Rangers.

After the WR, the Rangers may have formed the bulk of the White Company.

The Rangers wore brown and green camouflage uniforms, with green gloves and masks. They carried spears or great bows as well as swords.

Hope this helps ... as you said, not a lot is known about the Rangers, but that makes them even more interesting Wink !

~ boe an phân pedi ‘lam dadui ~ Reading
~ everyone should speak a second language ~
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 04, 2004 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yup, that's where I got all my info from for a fic that I am currently putting together. 'The Complete Guide To Middle Earth' is a great reference, I would reccomend it to anyone, but some areas are so so lavishly written. Still, I use it like an Encyclopedia. Great book.
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 04, 2004 12:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I found here and interesting article


It's worth reading

***Pervy Halbarad fancier***
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 15, 2017 10:40 pm    Post subject: The Dunedain Of The North Reply with quote

(over a decade later...)

The Dunedain of the North...

Much history is written of them. From an equal kingdom with Gondor, to its partition into three kingdom states of Rhuadur, Cardolan, and Arthedain, to each state's eventual destruction by the sustained pressure from the Witch King of Angmar. With the downfall of Fornost Erain, the capitol of Arthedain, in late 1974 of the Third Age and the loss of King Arvedui in the frozen north, the Dunedain of the North were much weakened, and the remnants of the people became wanderers of the wild of the old lands. But the continuous watch of the Rangers for more than a millennia helped keep the former lands of Arnor as peaceful as possible. Finally, Aragorn returned as the King of both Kingdoms. [size=70](All of which was swept under the rug by PJ's fanfic. Anyway, I wont go on my usual rant about that.)[/size]

This is about the Dunedain Rangers after they came into being in 1976 of the Third Age. I believe this is just about everything mentioned about the Dunedain Rangers of the North in the various books. Let me know if there are some I missed.

"Few now remember them ... yet still some go wandering, sons of forgotten kings walking in loneliness, guarding from evil things folk that are heedless."

-Tom Bombadil … The Fellowship of the Ring- Fog on the Barrow-downs

Rangers - The Dúnedain of the North after the fall of the North Kingdom, secret guardians of Eriador

-Unfinished Tales, index

"…the Dúnedain of the North, ……..a strange people wandering secretly in the wild, and other men knew not their homes nor the purpose of their journeys, and save in Imladris, in the House of Elrond, their ancestry was forgotten.

-Silmarillion, Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age

When the kingdom ended the Dúnedain passed into the shadows and became a secret and wandering people, and their deeds and labours were seldom sung or recorded. Little is now remembered of them since Elrond departed....

-Lord of the Rings, Appendix A

In the wild lands beyond Bree there were mysterious wanderers. The Bree folk called them Rangers and knew nothing of their origin. They were taller and darker than the Men of Bree and were believed to have strange powers of sight and hearing, and to understand the language of beasts and birds. They roamed at will southwards and eastwards even as far as the Misty Mountains; but they were now few and rarely seen.

-Lord of the Rings, At the Sign of the Prancing Pony

"I have thirty with me." said Halbarad "That is all of our kindred that could be gathered in haste."

-Lord of the Rings, The Passing of the Grey Company

When the Nazgul came to Sarn Ford and tried to enter the Shire:
They came to Sarn Ford and the southernmost borders of the Shire. They found them guarded, for the Rangers barred their way.……some fled northward … Some still dared to bar the ford and held it while the day lasted.

-Unfinished Tales, The Hunt for the Ring

Aragorn speaks of some of their ways:
"There is food in the wild,’ said Strider "berry, root and herb; and I have some skill as a hunter at need."

-Lord of the Rings, A Knife in the Dark

Aragorn is described as such:
He wore high boots of supple leather that fitted him well……A travel-stained cloak of heavy dark green cloth was drawn closely about him……he wore a hood that overshadowed his face;……..a shaggy head flecked with grey, and in a pale, stern face a pair of keen grey eyes.

-Lord of the Rings, Strider

It's mentioned:
Strider was content with a single cloak

-Lord of the Rings, A Knife in the Dark

When when the fellowship left Rivendell:
Aragorn had Anduril, but no other weapon, and he went forth clad only in rusty green and brown, as a Ranger in the wilderness.

-Lord of the Rings, The Ring Goes South

A description of Halbarad's company of Rangers:
A little apart the Rangers sat, silent, in an ordered company, armed with spear and bow and sword. They were clad in cloaks of dark grey, and their hoods were cast now over helm and head. Their horses were strong and of proud bearing, but rough-haired;…….There was no gleam of stone or gold, nor any fair thing in all their gear or harness; nor did their riders bear any badge or token, save only that each cloak was pinned upon the left shoulder by a brooch of silver shaped like a rayed star.

-Lord of the Rings, The Passing of the Grey Company

Rangers looked out for each other in the wild:
’Rangers have been here lately. It is they who left the firewood behind.

-Lord of the Rings, A Knife in the Dark)


This has to be one of my favourite passages from the Lord of the Rings books....

From Chapter II of Return of the King. Passing of the Grey Company.

... They had not long passed the mounds at the Fords of Isen, when a Rider galloped up from the back of their line.

'My Lord,' he said to the king. 'there are horsemen behind us. As we crossed the fords I thought that I heard them. Now we are sure. They are overtaking us, riding hard.'

Theoden at once called a halt. The Riders turned about and seized their spears. Aragorn dismounted and set Merry on the ground, and drawing his sword he stood by the king's stirrup. Eomer and his esquire rode back to the rear. Merry felt more like unneeded baggage than ever, and he wondered, if there was a fight, what he should do. Supposing the king's small escort was trapped and overcome but he escaped into the darkness - alone in the wild fields of Rohan with no idea of where he was in all the endless miles? 'No good' he thought. He drew his sword and tightened his belt.

The sinking moon was obscured by a great sailing cloud, but suddenly it rode out clear again. Then they all heard the sound of hoofs, and at the same moment they saw dark shapes coming swiftly on the path from the fords. The moonlight glinted here and there on the points of spears. The number of the pursuers could not be told, but they seemed no fewer than the king's escort, at the least.

When they were some fifty paces off, Eomer cried out in a loud voice : 'Halt! Halt! Who rides in Rohan?'

The pursuers brought their steeds to a sudden stand. A silence followed; and then in the moonlight, a horseman could be seen dismounting and walking slowly forward. His hand showed white as he held it up, palm outward, in token of peace; but the king's men gripped their weapons. At ten paces the man stopped. He was tall, a dark standing shadow. Then his clear voice rang out.

'Rohan? Rohan did you say? That is a glad word. We seek that land in haste from long afar.'

'You have found it.'
said Eomer. 'When you crossed the fords yonder you entered it. But it is the realm of Theoden the King. None ride here save by his leave. Who are you? And what is your haste?'

'Halbarad Dunedain, Ranger of the North I am.'
cried the man 'We seek one Aragorn, son of Arathorn, and we heard that he was in Rohan.'

'And you have found him also!'
cried Aragorn. Giving his reigns to Merry, he ran forward and embraced the newcomer. 'Halbarad!' he said. 'Of all joys this is the least expected!'

Merry breathed a sigh of relief. He thought that this was some last trick of Saruman's, to waylay king while he had only a few men about him; but it seemed there would be no need to die in Theoden's defence, not yet at any rate. He sheathed his sword.

'All is well.' said Aragorn, turning back. 'Here are some of my own kin from the far land where I dwelt. But why they come, and how many they be, Halbarad shall tell us.'

'I have thirty with me.'
said Halbarad. 'That is all of our kindred that could be gathered in haste; but the brethren Elladan and Elrohir have ridden with us, desiring to go to the war. We rode swiftly as we might when your summons came.'

'But I did not summon you,' said Aragorn, 'save only in wish.My thoughts have often turned to you, and seldom more than tonight; yet I have sent no word. But come! All such matters must wait. You find us riding in haste and danger. Ride with us now, if the king will give his leave.'

Theoden was indeed glad of the news. 'It is well!' he said. 'If these kinsmen be in any way like to yourself, my lord Aragorn, thirty such knights will be a strength that cannot be counted by heads.'

Then the Riders set out again, and Aragorn for a while rode with the Dunedain; and when they had spoken of tidings in the North and in the South, Elrohir said to him :

'I bring word to you from my father : "The Days are short. If thou art in haste, remember the Paths of the Dead."'

'Always my days have seemed to me short to achieve my desire.'
answered Aragorn. 'But great indeed will be my haste ere I take that road.'

'That will soon be seen.'
said Elrohir. 'But let us speak no more of these things upon the open road!'

And Aragorn said to Halbarad : 'What is that that you bear, kinsman?'
For he saw that instead of a spear he bore a tall staff, as it were a standard, but it was close-furled in a black cloth bound about with many thongs.

'It is a gift that I bring you from the Lady of Rivendell.' answered Halbarad. 'She wrought it in secret, and long was the making. But she also sends word to you : "The days now are short. Either our hope cometh, or all hopes end. Therefore I send thee what I have made for thee. Fare well Elfstone!"'

And Aragorn said : 'Now I know what you bear. Bear it still for me a while!' And he turned and looked away to the North under the great stars, and then he fell silent and spoke no more while the night's journey lasted.


Dunedain Ranger of the North
Annalist, Physician, & Historian
of The Black Company of the Dúnedain,
The Free Company of Arnor.
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