Sauron, formerly known as Mairon, fears Aragorn for reasons I do not know. I especially do not understand, since Sauron is far more powerful than Aragorn even without the ring, as he is a Maia.

Why does Sauron fear Aragorn?

  • 13
    Being a Maia didn't stop Elendil and Gil-Galad from kicking his butt. It also didn't stop him from dying in the wreck of Numenor. Maia != invincible.
    – Shamshiel
    Commented Nov 19, 2015 at 10:31
  • 9
    I don't know, he should really fear Frodo!
    – a_a
    Commented Nov 21, 2015 at 2:37
  • 6
    Why do you think Sauron Fears Aragorn? Can you provide the quote?
    – a_a
    Commented Nov 21, 2015 at 2:39
  • I always read it the way that Sauron was super impatient about grabbing his ring back, and hence stroke with his full might when the ring (as he thought) was brought right to his doorsteps.
    – void_ptr
    Commented Jun 17, 2016 at 16:57
  • In the movie at least, it doesn't seem that the 'eye of Sauron' fears Aragorn himself, even though he is Isildur's heir, as much as he fears the re-forged blade that cut off his ring finger in the first place. Again, that is if you are talking about the way the movie shows it... Commented Jan 12, 2018 at 21:54

9 Answers 9


There are two main reasons for this:

  1. Aragorn is part Maia himself (over Isildur, Elendil, Elros, Elwing, Lúthien and Melian, links from the LOTR Project family tree).
  2. Isildur, Aragorn's ancestor, was the one who took the ring from Sauron in the war of the Last Alliance (with Narsil, the sword that was reforged and given to Aragorn before the end of the Ring War).
  • 15
    I don't think the fact Aragorn is a loose descendant of Melian is reason for Sauron to be alarmed by him. I think it's more to do with your second point, and also that he was lead to believe Aragorn possessed the One Ring and was afraid he would claim it for his own just like Isildur did.
    – John Bell
    Commented Nov 19, 2015 at 10:25
  • 4
    It is part of the package. And also the reason that Aragorn may be one of the few beings in Middle-Earth who could truly wear and use the One Ring against Sauron (with Saruman, Gandalf, Galadriel, Elrond being the other most likely).
    – Raidri
    Commented Nov 19, 2015 at 14:10
  • 1
    This is just speculation though. Isildur, who we can say was of purer Maia blood than Aragorn (less generations to water down the genes), couldn't master the ring and was betrayed by it. So why would we assume that Aragorn, a man logically of lesser potency than that of his ancestors, could master the ring? My understanding, which is again just speculation, is that no-one including Sauron could master the ring, as he was betrayed by it himself. In Tolkien's own words "The Ring and all its works would have endured. It would have been the master in the end."
    – John Bell
    Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 11:06
  • 1
    I didn't say "master", I said "wear and use" as in do more with it then just becomming "invisible". You are probably right that with the rest of your comment. In regard to the question, Aragorn doesn't need to master the ring for Sauron to fear that he maybe could.
    – Raidri
    Commented Nov 21, 2015 at 10:08
  • Oh yes. Sauron could crush Melian herself if he wanted to. I don't think he will have any fear of Aragorn just because he is descended from her by some very tiny 0.00..1%
    – Valandil
    Commented Sep 26, 2016 at 11:12

In addition to the reasons cited in other answers, e.g.,

  • one of Aragorn's ancestors was a Maia,
  • another one of his ancestors cut the Ring from Sauron's hand,
  • he wields that same sword, reforged,

there is another fear that Sauron had: Sauron does not know who has the Ring. He suspects that Aragorn may have it, and in his pride, is attempting to overthrow Sauron to put himself in Sauron's place.

Aragorn, as a descendant of the Men of Númenor, armed with the One Ring, would be a truly terrifying foe. Presumably, he would be able to control the Nazgûl, Orcs, and Trolls; he could persuade the men of Harad and Rhûn to change sides. Sauron would be left without an army.

It is what he would do in our place. That we would wish to overthrow him and have no one in his place, he has not considered. That we should seek to destroy the Ring has not yet entered his darkest dreams.

(That quotation is from memory; I don't have the books with me.)


Because Aragorns ancestor Isildur was the one who cut the finger with the ring from Sauron. And Aragorn is wielding the same reforged sword that did the deed.


Aragorn is the Heir of Isildur

Being the rightful King to the thrones of Gondor1 (and Arnor re-established), he had the potential to reunite the sundered Kingdoms of the Dúnedain: Arnor and Gondor, to oppose Sauron.

Then Aragorn, being now the Heir of Isildur, was taken with his mother to dwell in the house of Elrond; and Elrond took the place of his father and came to love him as a son of his own. But he was called Estel, that is "Hope", and his true name and lineage were kept secret at the bidding of Elrond; for the Wise then knew that the Enemy was seeking to discover the Heir of Isildur, if any remained upon earth.

The bigger reason that Sauron was so fearful was that:

Sauron (mistakenly) believed that Aragorn had the Ring and would use it against him

'Now Sauron knows all this, and he knows that this precious thing which he lost has been found again; but he does not yet know where it is, or so we hope. And therefore he is now in great doubt. For if we have found this thing, there are some among us with strength enough to wield it. That too he knows. For do I not guess rightly, Aragorn, that you have shown yourself to him in the Stone of Orthanc?'

'I did so ere I rode from the Hornburg,' answered Aragorn. 'I deemed that the time was ripe, and that the Stone had come to me for just such a purpose. It was then ten days since the Ring-bearer went east from Rauros, and the Eye of Sauron, I thought, should be drawn out from his own land. Too seldom has he been challenged since he returned to his Tower. Though if I had foreseen how swift would be his onset in answer, maybe I should not have dared to show myself. Bare time was given me to come to your aid.'

Therefore Sauron had all the more reason to fear Aragorn's power. Though being a mortal Man, Aragorn 'wrenched' the Orthanc-stone against from Sauron's will. That's definitely to be afraid of Aragorn.

I don't think that Aragorn having a very small amount of Maiar blood in him was the reason that Sauron feared him, as many of the other answers given seem to suggest. By the time Aragorn was born, his Maiar blood was so diluted that it can be considered as irrelevant. In this excellent answer Aragorn's Maiar blood percentage is calculated to be 0.000000000000000001355%.

1 : This is perfectly answered here.


Aragorn is the one man who can reunite the kingdoms of men (I mean Rohan and Gondor) and stand up to Sauron. He can also summon the Men of the Mountain, but I do not think Sauron is aware of that.

  • Do you have any references to back this up?
    – Chenmunka
    Commented Nov 19, 2015 at 13:36
  • 1
    @Chenmunka Well, he did that, to an extent. And his "alliance" was able to maintain a good defence against Sauron and his allies, and even mount an offensive. There are still plenty of kingdoms of men that he didn't unite, though (e.g. the Southron). Even if Sauron didn't fear Aragorn before that, he would be foolish to ignore him after demonstrating considerable proficiency for war.
    – Luaan
    Commented Nov 19, 2015 at 13:53
  • Don't forget the Easterlings and the Haradrim, who fought against The Armies of the West. Those were also men, who were not united through Aragorn.
    – John Bell
    Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 11:10
  • 1
    @JohnBell Aragorn did make peace with the Haradrim and the Men of Rhun afterwards though. Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 12:32
  • I agree with this interpretation. Sauron's best weapon was instilling fear in and preying upon the apathy of those he wanted to enslave. Aragorn was a threat in that he had the potential to unite the kingdoms of men and get them to defend themselves.
    – DanielSank
    Commented May 21, 2016 at 0:55

Sauron manipulated the Palantíri to deceive, driving Saruman to treason and Denethor to despair, thus nobbling the strongest of his opponents.

Then up pops Aragorn. He has the Palantír of Orthanc, so presumably he has already defeated Saruman while Mordor wasn't looking. What's worse, he has the strength of will to take control of the Palantír, and the clear intention to claim the throne of Gondor, rally its people, and generally do all that Denethor could not.

All that scheming wasted!


He fears Aragorn (specifically Aragorn) because of a Prophecy of the Elves which fortells that the Heir of Isildur will encompass his destruction. Sauron is a Maia but he is also dammned. He fears the inevitable retribution for his evil.


I think most of the other answers have overlooked something else. In addition to Sauron fearing him for his potential with the One Ring, which he thinks is Aragorns for the taking, there is this:

He can command men, that is pretty much it. In a fractured world (there are few and weak alliances) he is the one man that can bring them together and put up a fight, even win, especially with the ring.


There are two elements of the answer not mentioned above.

Once a Maia, or even a Vala (such as Morgoth) turns against Eru, they gain no more power. Any power they use is used up, and is lost to them. That is why they can be defeated by those who, originally, had less power than they did. Morgoth is wounded by Shelob and taken captive by Valar once less powerful than himself because of this. Similarly, Sauron lost a lot of power in the fall of Numenor and in making, then losing the One Ring. So he is vulnerable.

Aragorn is the rightful heir of Gondor, the kingdom descended from Numenor, a kingdom of men created by the Valar. This imbues him with power very high among men, close to that of the Maia. So as Sauron descends, unable to replenish his power, and Aragorn ascends, Good prevails over Evil not because it is stronger in this world, but because it is perpetually renewed and reborn from the Source of Life itself.

No doubt Tolkien's view of the triumph of the Good through resurrection of life, which he called "eucatastrophe" is related to his theology, which fits within one of the theories of good and evil within the Catholic doctrine.

  • Have you sources / references for this?
    – Raidri
    Commented Dec 10, 2015 at 10:23
  • Thanks for asking. The source material for the first 3 paragraphs are all in the Silmarillion and the appendice of LOTR. I will try to add page references and quotes, but I did the research over a decade ago, and it may take time to dig them out.
    – Sid Kemp
    Commented Dec 11, 2015 at 14:55
  • Although the answer itself doesn't make much sense I like this line and think it is a nice way to put things - "Good prevails over Evil not because it is stronger in this world, but because it is perpetually renewed and reborn from the Source of Life itself."
    – Valandil
    Commented Sep 26, 2016 at 11:30

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