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Thread: What the heck does the Grey Havens look like?

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I kind of always pictured the grey havens looking somewhat like parts of the coast of Maine: rocky, misty, windy, but not altogether foreboding and unpleasant.
I've always pictured the Grey Havens as a Norwegian fishing village perched on the side of a fiord, except the buildings are more ornate and a few eons older, and in the area of habitation there are lawns of mown green grass rather than just a rocky shore line, but the cliffs and elderly buildings are weathered grey, hence the name. Oh yes, all the longboats have swanheads rather than dragonheads. Cool Elf Smilie

And welcome to our forum Tar-Aldarion. Happy Elf Smilie

[Edited on 20/10/2002 by Grondmaster]
Erm... Grey?
Wow Grondy, I'll never see Lofoten the way I used to anymore! (Place in Norway know for their wether-beaten small fishing villages). *Proud to live in Norway*
Way back in 1950, in my fourth grade elementary school social studies class, we spent an entire month learning about Norway. That plus the many photos in The National Geographic Magazine gave me a built in picture of the Grey Havens. Of course I doubt if that part of Middle-earth gets as much snow as Norway, probably more like our central Puget Sound, where we seldom get over a foot on the ground at sea level, and our snow never lasts more than a fortnight. Cool Elf Smilie
That's as good, if not better than my vision. I remember a spot on the west coast of Scotland that met your criteria except the soft sand was replaced by small rocks. Oh Lordy but, wasn't it grey!
Interesting. My imagining of The Grey Havens matches nicely with Anilorak's but without the soft sandy beach. Just rocks... grey rocks. The only thing I would add is a single, long, brilliant white stone pier. Actually, quite a lot like parts of the Jersey shore!

Oh, and with Cirdan just standing around getting salt encrusted. Big Laugh Smilie J/k.
In my mind it looks pretty much like Anilorak's described it. Huge rocks everywhere, a grey mist on the water and this one white ship always moared there (until of course Gandalf and co. take it). Guess everyone has a different view.
I alway's picture tha Grey havens as bineg situated in a bay with a delta to the side of it, and there being a walled city ther with tall ellegant tower's and lots of wharf's extending into the sea, beaches that double up as dry docks, and a cliff face to the opposite side to the of the delta with a large tower on the top of it with a beacon on the top of the tower.
Ross's picture is also plausible; however, it's more like I pictured Cirdan's port in Beleriand. As I have expertise on neither location, his picture is at least as good, if not better than mine. Cool Elf Smilie
wow, all of these descriptions are amazing. I love all the images that they conjure up. I think Tolkien himself would have been very impressed.
I think the Grey Heavens are more like a kind of mixture between Venice and mythical Avalon in a Norwegian setting: a magnificent city build in the sea before steep and grey rock walls hidden behind a curtain of nebulas where silver trumpets call whenever an elven ship is arriving.
Maybe a little black and a little white...
Smart A***
Ah, the Grey Havens. I always imagined it as a lagoon, backed by high cliffs, with the Sea stretching as far as the eye can see. From a single small balcony protruding from the face of the white cliff, one can look out and see the waves gently lapping against a narrow sandy beach at the cliff's base. Built into the cliff are a network of caverns, with the occasional exit, either leading to the shore or to the expansive green fields behind the Havens. Inside the caverns behind the balcony, torch lights gently dance around the walls of the bast network of tunnels. Further down, following the sound of many voices, a great hall can be reached, where songs are sung and tales are told of heroic ages long past. On a second face of the cliff, there is a vast cave, into which is built a great harbour, where majestic Elven ships often dock. When this regular, yet no less exciting evant takes place, crowds of Elves and Men flock to the harbour to greet the returning travellers with the sound of Teleri trumpets, braying into a brisk sea breeze and being carried away for all to hear.
Beautiful, Peredhil. If there's one place I'd call home in Middle Earth it'd be the Havens. You've made me dream of being there even more now. Smile Smilie
Well Valedhelgwath I have to disagree with you on that. If we are looking for a place to live in Arda, and we like living next to the ocean, I'd choose Alqualond’.
Alqualond’ belongs to Aman, not Arda. But it sounds like a lovely place. *dreams*
I'd rather this thread be about the description of the Grey Havens rather than the neatest, coolest, nicest, most esthetic place on Ea to visit/live. Moderator Smilie

Therefore, please take that discussion to the taverns where there are threads of that ilk to which you may add your comments.

Thank you,

Grondy Elf With a Big Grin Smilie
Alqualond’ belongs to Aman, not Arda. But it sounds like a lovely place. *dreams*
Aman is part of Arda, do you mean Endor?
Okay, towards lessening confusion:

E’ is Tolkien's universe.

Arda is Tolkien's world.
Endor is Middle-earth, the continent where the Elves, Dwarves, and Men awoke and spent most of their lives.

Aman is the continent to the west of Middle-earth.

The Pel’ri, the eastern coastal range of Aman.

Valinor is the home of the Valar on the continent of Aman lying to the west of The Pel’ri. Later in 3319 S.A. when Numenor was submerged because the Numenorians had the audacity to attack Valinor, Valinor was removed from Arda and Aman was hidden to keep Men from sailing there uninvited.

Alqualond’ is the chief city and haven on the coast of Aman of the Telerian Elves, who left Middle-earth on the invite of the Valar.

The Grey Havens are on the west coast of Middle-earth, just to the west of Hobbiton and the Tower Hills.

Let me know if I have any of the above wrong so I can edit it with the correct info.

(edited by Grondy to correct "east" to "west".)
Cheers Grondy, thats what I was saying, did she it doesn't belong to Endor.
The grey Havens is not in ME it is off the coasts, but still I think that the grey havens are really beautiful and peaceful where all the elves are, I think that if you have nothing else to do in ME you should go like Frodo and Gandalf and Galadriel did.

"it is in sickness when they are reminded they are only human"
the Grey Havens are part of middle earth as they Lie on the same continental shelf!
The grey Havens is not in ME it is off the coasts, but still I think that the grey havens are really beautiful and peaceful where all the elves are, I think that if you have nothing else to do in ME you should go like Frodo and Gandalf and Galadriel did.

"it is in sickness when they are reminded they are only human"
Welcome to our forum Anatea(seajewel). Happy Elf Smilie

I'm sorry, but you may be confusing The Grey Havens with Valinor, the place of rest. The Grey Havens are the place from which Galadriel, Gandalf,Gandalf, Elrond, and Frodo set sail for Valinor.

Actually The Grey Havens are located on the Gulf of Lune, approximately 200 miles eastwards from the mouth of the Gulf, which is restricted by two points of land about 25 miles apart: one in Forlindin on the north and the other in Harlindon to the south.

Even though I describe this body of water in a post above as a fiord, its width undoubtedly makes it a gulf or a very long inlet at worst. It is only fiord-like on small maps where you can't get a true sense of its relative size. Its mouth is more than twice as wide as the Strait of Gibraltar.

[Edited on 9/7/2003 by Grondmaster]
thanks for that I thought gandalf galadriel and the rest went to the grey havens, but now I understand thanxz
I never tried to picture the Grey Havens, but i do wonder what they look like. I imagine they'd look like Rivendell/Lothlorien, since the elves go there. Irima-Arwen
My image is of something like Norway. (I've never been. With Iceland, it's a place I very much would like to visit. I think partially because I have particular admiration for Roald Amundsen and Sigrid Undset.) It's also influenced by pictures I've seen of Northwest Coast Native American villages. In my personal experience I think it would feel like when, in the Coast Guard, I sailed up the Kennebec River to Bath, Maine in patchy winter fog.

Something I've noticed about Tolkien is that he has a special appreciation of the color grey. I am surprised how many years of my life had gone by before I saw what beautiful colors weathered lumber has.
Grondy - nice compendium of those places. Only error I see is that the Grey Havens are west of Hobbiton and the Tower Hills, not east.


Wink Smilie
Thanks Oloriniwasinmyyouth, I knew and meant west, but my fingers must have thought I was sitting in the Havens looking east when they typed the error. Anyway, today I fixed the error.
I really like Grondy's vision of the Havens. And somehow, now i cant think of them any diffrently... Elf With a Big Grin Smilie