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Thread: Kings of Men?

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Why are Numenoreans called the Kings of Men? How can a whole nation consist of kings? Who did they rule over? Just seems strange to apply the term "kings" to a whole nation, and especially to the few remaining rangers in the 3rd Age.

What a great thread Windspace.

I guess to cut a long story short, the Men of the West earned their title of Kings of Men after the final Victorious battle against Melkor, the first Dark Lord, as they supported the Noldor and the other powers and Elves of the West. These Men, The Edain, were made up of three houses, The Haladin, The Beor and The Hador. The surviving Members of these houses of Men were given the newly fashioned Island of Numenor which was positioned between Middle Earth and Blessed Valinor by The Valar. These Men took ships and followed Earendil's Western star over the great sea to their new home, led by Elros, twin brother of Elrond the Half Elven, who was crowned first King of Numenor. For hundreds of years they lived in peace while the remaining men of Middle Earth fell into ruin and hardship under the Darkness of Sauron, the new Dark Lord. As the stature of the Eastern Men waned, the power, stature and glory of the Dunedain waxed until they became the greatest Men to ever walk the Earth. Descendants of the blood line of Elros, after thousands of years, returned to Middle Earth and ruled Gondor and Arnor and strived to unite all free folk against Sauron.

Hence they were known as Kings of Men.

I'm sure many other friends here will fill in the many and age long gaps.

what he stated above is pretty damn accurate. and they were the Kings of men, but within the kingdom of numeanor, there was only One king to rule at a time and each king rules for anywhere from about 150-400, maybe 500 years. I think Elros ruled the longest. But with the kingdome as time went on, a bigger faction stayed loyal to the kings, who had stated to become "corrupt: for lack of a better word and went against the valar. Then their was was the smaller faction, who was loyal to the old way and to the Valar, and their leader was Elendil and those men fled east from Numeanor, with Isildur and Anarion, while the greater group loyal to the last corrupt king, sailed west and perished and Numeanor was drowned. I dont think Elendil was the "current: king, but he became King when he came to Middle-Earth. So, only one of thousands of Numeanorians was "truly" king within hundreds of years. There were about 25 Kings throughout the reign of Numeanor. So Numenoreans are the "Kings of Men" but only a small portion ever held the tital King. They can be considered Kings of men in the sense that they all had longer life and were less prone to disease and other such things, they were closer to elves then all other Men, since they came from the line of earendil and Elwing, and through Elros. and because of that Numeanoreans, have the Blood of all Three houses of Men, and the have blood of the Maiar in them, and of all the variaty of elvish blood, Vanyar, Noldor, Teleri, and Sindar. At least the line of the true kings of Numeanor came from Elros, so all the Kings and their kin have the blood of all the free peoples of middle earth from the earlier days. But, we should not ignore, that although while the Numeanorians were on Numeanor, and SAauron took power over Middle-Earth, he probably gave lordship to many evil or loyal men in the east and the south of Mordor. So there were probably kings in the East, just not loyal in anyway to the Valar. Corrupt from the ealiest days of Men, who never ventured west into Beleriand with the other Three houses. Three of the Ringwriaths, are said to be Numenorean Kings, and the second in command after the Witch-King of Agmar, was Kumal, and he was a King from the East, but was not a Numeanorian. And the evil-kings in the east, were probabnly given greater power through Sauron, likely through the Rings.

Great responses! Pretty much covers it at this point...

It's not a literal title, just emphasizes the fact these hardy folk were not normal. Stronger, faster, wiser, lived longer....and arguably more prideful. So basically normal mortals on elvish steroids...

I really like Numenorean history. A fascinating look at the potential of men, both good and bad. I was so upset when I first read in the Sil that they were so easily convinced to attack Valinor. I mean, seriously? Did you really think you stood a chance against the gods that created the world you live in? And by Sauron nonetheless, Morgoth's known most trusted servant who suddenly changed sides. Come on...really?

yea, i didnt like how the majority of the numenoreans went against the Valar. And then in middle-earth the numenoreans northern realms get taken out and only gondor survives, and the numenoreans deminish. But what I do like most, is how the men get perceived as easily corrupt, but the valar didnt help them one once when they awoke. They were prey to Morgoth and his minions. Morgoth was the only Valar Men had ever saw. Can they really be blamed for either blindly following or just following in fear. I mean, its one thing if the men knew of the Valar or had seen them or at least been sent messages, informing them to not follow Morgoth, but they got none of that. Only the Men who fought against Morgoth in the last battle, became numenoreans. Kinda screwed really. Hey "men" we helped the elves and have never helped you, but could you help us defeat Morgoth, after all these centuries of us powerful gods sitting back and leeting him corrupt you". And Then say screw the other men in the east who didnt fight for us, nor fight against us.  love the Silmarillion, but I do have problems with the Valar at times. Manwe is too passive. One could say the Valar never got involved, because Men's special gift, which besides death is that they may shape the world beyond the the music of the ainur and complete everything and anything until the very last and are not bound to earth. So maybe the Valar had less "jurisdiction" over men. But, i ddont think thats an excuse. 

It should also be said that thes "Kings of Men" lost their title when greed and pride over took them thanks to Sauron. They took for granted all of their great fortune and forgot that they were indeed blessed in the first place by The Valar and of course by Eru himself. They destroyed themselves via this greed, by wanting even more than they were granted. Tolkien uses the Numenoriens as an example of how greed leads to evil. Something we should all take great heed in.

Of course the most fathful were spared and saved and led their rag tag group to greatness umoungst the regular Men of Middle Earth. Having learned a great lesson the Dunadain strove always to goodness with any who showed too much pride very quickly being reminded of the pitfalls of greed.