The Passing of the Elves

        also known as The Elvish Lament

lyrics source text








The Passing of the Elves

Frodo and Sam spy the Wood Elves

(CR-FOTR Disc One - Track 10)



Music composed by David Long with Plan 9

(David Donaldson, Stephen Rocha, and Janet Roddick)

Sindarin translation by David Salo

 English Lyrics by J.RR. Tolkien
FOTR, Book 1, Chapter III, Three is Company

Frodo and Sam hear passing Wood Elves sing this song. (Additional scene in the FOTR EE DVD) 


Tolkien wrote the English version which was translated into Sindarin by David Salo. These lyrics from the FOTR Annotated Score. Only five lines can be heard on the DVD but the entire song is on the Complete Recordings - FOTR.


The name seen at the top of the page is from the FOTR Annotated Score. In the book, this poem is listed as one of many hymns to Elbereth. There, it is also sung by Passing Elves, but in the book the Hobbits stop to eat, talk and sleep with them.


Sung by Plan 9.


excerpt from original English poem from book:

Fanuilos heryn aglar

Snow White! Snow White! O Lady clear!


Text in blue indicates language used

Text in green indicates lyrics used

Text in black indicates English translation

Rîn athar annún-aearath, * O Queen beyond the Western Seas!
Calad ammen i reniar * O Light to us that wander there
Mi ‘aladhremmin ennorath! * Amid the world of woven trees!
A Elbereth Gilthoniel * Gilthoniel! O Elbereth!
I chîn a thûl lin míriel * Clear are thy eyes and bright is breath,
Fanuilos le linnathon Snow-white! Snow-white! We sing to thee
Ne ndor haer thar i aearon. In a far land beyond the Sea!
A elin na gaim eglerib O Stars that in the Sunless Year
Ned în ben-anor trerennin With shining hand by thee were sown,
Si silivrin ne pherth ‘waewib In windy fields now bright and clear
Cenim lyth thílyn thuiennin. We see your silver blossom blown!
A Elbereth Gilthoniel O Elbereth Gilthoniel!
Men echenim sí derthiel We still remember, we who dwell
Ne chaered hen nu ‘aladhath In this far land beneath the trees,
Ngilith or annún-aearath. Thy starlight on the Western Seas.

* indicates the five lines heard in FOTR EE DVD.

FOTR, Book 1, Chapter III, Three is Company

Frodo, Sam and Pippin hear Gildor's company singing this song as they make their way to Crickhollow.  This is one of a couple of hymns to Varda, (or Elbereth in the Sindarin tongue) highest of the Valiar.