J.R.R. Tolkien’s ‘Aldarion and Erendis: The Mariner’s Wife’, published in the Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-earth, is a cautionary tale of a failed marriage that also serves as an indicator of the moral decline of Númenor in the Second Age of Middle-earth. In this relationship is the beginning of the Downfall, heralding the shadow of evil that will entangle events into the Third Age. This paper explores the significance of this story to the history of Middle-earth, as well as its possible roots in medieval texts such as the Prose Edda and the Icelandic Laxdaela Saga.



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