The Valar

The Valar were the highest among the Ainur who came to Eä in the beginning. There were fourteen Valar — excluding the High Ainu Morgoth, whose fall from grace forever removed his name from the rolls of the Exalted.

As Ainur, the Valar are immortal spirits without need of corporeal conveyance. Their spirits only took form so they could interact with the Children of Eru. The Valar’s role, which was the creation and wardship of Arda and the Heavens, dictated their need for shape and their occasional adoption of physical bodies. Guardians of a material world require material ties.

An Overview of the Valar

The Valar are few, but they are the most powerful beings in Eä. They work through their people, their lesser brethren, the Maïar, whose number is unknown. Pledging their loyalties to the Vala royalty, these less exalted Ainur serve as the Valar’s servants. (See 5.0 for more about the Maïar.)

The Maïar serve as a link between the Free Peoples and the Valar; and, in turn, the Valar are Eru’s representatives, the trustees of the World patterned by his thought. The chain bringing Eru’s conceptions to fruition, then, looks something like this:

Although the One designed a great plan for Eä, he desired little interference in the affairs of his Children. Just as the brilliant diversity and individual passions of his Ainu servants endowed Creation with a richness and fullness of life, the myriad cultures and races of the Free Peoples have given Arda a character sparkling with infinite variety. The combination of Eru’s delegation, the Valar’s restraint, and the Maïar’s discipline afford each tier in the hierarchy of existent life freedom. However outwardly chaotic, as long as the Balance of Things remains intact, the evolution of Eru’s thought proceeds as planned. This Balance is fundamental to the Valar’s mission in Eä.

Documents of the section

A list of all the known Valar from Middle-Earth.


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