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Thread: half-elves??

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The peredhil, or half-elves, are those whose parentage is of both human and elven blood. Genetically, they are half-elf, quarter-elf etc, but because of the Gift of Man which Eru gave to humans, things become slightly more complicated.

Any elf with some human blood has the right to claim the Gift of Man, and so becomes a Man. Those who choose not to accept this gift right away appear as elves until which time they do choose to accept this gift.

To help explain this concept better, let's look at a few of the mixed elf/human characters....

Dior was the son of Luthien and Beren. From his parents he had Human, Elven and Maian blood. He married and elf, Nimloth but was slain without making the choice of Man or Elf.

Elwing was the daughter of Dior. She married Earendil who being the son of Tuor and Idril was another half-elf. Of these two, Earendil wanted the gift of Man but Elwing would have preferred to live as an elf. In the end, after entering Valinor, Earendil was sent into the sky in his ship and is immortal.

Of their sons, Elrond and Elros, Elros chose the Gift of Man, married a mortal and died after 500 years. His line then became mortal too and none of his descendants were given the choice even though they had diluted elven blood in their veins.

Elrond chose the elven path, but even though he lived for thousands of years in Middle Earth, had he not gone to Valinor, he would have still been able to accept the Gift of Man and die should he want to. Evidently he did not see the benefits of Mortality over Immortality and seems pretty content to be an Elf forever.

The fact that Elrond chose the elven path, did not take the right of the Gift of Man away from his children, however. Even though Arwen, Elladan and Elrohir are approximately 13/16ths elven, the fact that 3/16ths of their blood is human gives them the right to accept the gift of Man.

After delaying this choice for almost 2800 years, Arwen accepted the Gift of Man when she fell in love with Aragorn, and so like him, became Mortal. Even though their children are half-elves, they will be mortal however, because both of their parents have accepted the Gift of Mortality.

Tolkien has never revealled the fate of Elrond's sons, whether they finally accepted the gift of Man or not.

I hope this has helped make things a little clearer for you. It is a matter of looking at both the genetics and whether the Gift of Man has been accepted.
I'm really not sure about this one, Perwing, and don't really have the time to search for an answer right now. Of anyone, though, he really seems to be half-elven in my eyes when I picture him. He was Thingol's heir and ruled Doriath for a short time, suggesting elven, but I always picture him with Beren, which gives me an image of human.
Pleased to be of service, Rinfacwen. It's nice to know we help Smile Smilie
Wow. Once again I'm amazed how something weighing on my mind is already being discussed here somewhere.

There were only three pairings of mortal man and High-elf or Sindarin Elf. But we know there were other pairs of lesser stature, including Imrahil's distant ancestors: one was a Silvan Elf. Were there any others? We don't know.
Did those children have to make the choice, or did they simply get raised by Men with no idea they had a choice?

But the Dior question is the one I'm really stumped about. He hadn't made the choice yet. Nor, I think, had Elladan and Elrohir. If they had been killed in the War of the Ring, where would they go?

Tolkien may never have answered that question. Anyone have any guesses? This isn't an innocent question -- once again, it's a problem I've hit while doing research for fanfic.
Well, Dior didn't have to choose as he was slain before he had to choose.
Elladan and Elrohir delayed their choice i guess. But, if Elrond left Middle-Earth and Elladan and Elrohir stayed behind in Middle-Earth they become mortals just like Arwen.
As the fea (spirits) of both Elves and Men get summoned to Mandos when their body dies, I think Dior would have still been given the choice once there. Once Mandos has decided they are ready to leave his Halls, the fea of elves are given the choice whether they leave or not anyway, indicating the fea have freewill in the halls. With this in mind, I see no reason why Dior's fea could not decide upon its fate once he had died. If he were not given this choice, he would have to be Man, as even Mandos could not take the Gift of Iluvater away from him.
Did those children have to make the choice, or did they simply get raised by Men with no idea they had a choice?
I'm not sure on the answer to this one. After bearing Imrazor two children, the Silven elf Mithrellas went over the sea into the West leaving her two children behind. I'm not sure whether they were given the choice or not, but whatever, they took the fate of Men and were the source of the elven blood in the line of the Princes of Dol Amroth. As Boromir and Faramir's mother was of this line, both of them would have also possessed weak elven blood (although not as weak as that of Aragorn).
As for Elladan and Elrohir staying behind and become mortal as Arwen I can't follow you. Arwen chooses to be a mortal herself because of Aragorn, it has nothing to do with her father!
As I explained in my last post they will not even have to choose as they are in every way considered elfs.
Sorry Perwing, I have to disagree with you here. The children of Elrond are given the same choice as that given to their father, because they cannot be denied the Gift of Iluvater just because he has declined it. Arwen accepted the Gift because of Aragorn, and was allowed to do so even after already leading many human life spans.

Tolkien never indicated the choices made by Elladan and Elrohir, but they would have had a choice. Only once the Gift has been accepted does the line lose future choice and the children be classed as Men (as in the line of Elros). As the choice can be delayed for many centuries, there is no reason why the twins could not have accepted either fate.

It would have been interesting to see what would have happened if Arwen had married Aragorn, but had also chosen to follow the elven path (I see no reason why she had to become mortal to be with Aragorn, other than through choice). In that case, Eldarion and his sisters would all have been given the choice too (perhaps the reason for Arwen having to become mortal actually).