I was reading through some of the questions and answers here on the Rings of Power and I just wondered why the ring effects, affected different races in a slightly different way.

I know other questions ask and answer some of these things, but I just wondered why the Rings of Power caused greed in Dwarves for ever more amounts of treasure.

It's true that Dwarves loved mining and loved wealth and were built of sturdier stuff than men, but why did the Rings of Power not control Dwarves in the way the other Rings of Power controlled men and why did it produce greed and not invisibility?

  • This is a duplicate of scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/3701/… which provides many details about these effects.
    – Eureka
    Dec 20, 2012 at 13:23
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    @Eureka I asked why they caused greed, not what effects they gave. I did make reference to other questions and answers in my own question, but none of the other questions or answers dealt with why they caused greed hence my question. Dec 20, 2012 at 13:25
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    From Lynn Fredricks answer: "Look at the effects of the 16 - they enable things highly desirable to the receiver. Humans desire unending life (the Downfall of Numenor), and dwarves dream of great wealth. Their desires are fulfilled, but in an awful way since they were tainted by Sauron." You can look at Thorin from the Hobbit for an example of dwarf that never touched any Ring but was ultimately betrayed by his lust for gold.
    – Eureka
    Dec 20, 2012 at 13:33
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    @Eureka I'm looking for a little more evidence than someone's personal (un-cited) opinion. Dec 20, 2012 at 13:36

2 Answers 2


Why did the Rings of Power not control the Dwarves in the same way the other Rings of Power controlled men? Why doesn't it produce invisibility ?

It's due to the natural resistance of the Dwarves. There were made hard like stone by their maker Aule, the Vala linked to rocks and stones. When Eru put the first dwarves to sleep, so that the Elves remain the First Born, Aule gave them even greater resistance so they could survive millenia of slumber. They are immensely resistant to hunger, thirst, pain, can spend a long time without sleeping, and very resistant to corruption.

Consequence (from the Silmarillion):

“The Dwarves indeed proved hard to tame, ... nor can they be turned to shadows.”

Why does it create greed? No hard proof in canon. But we know that the rings try to temp their bearers according to their nature:

Wild fantasies arose in his mind; and he saw Samwise the Strong, Hero of the Age, striding with a flaming sword across the darkened land, and armies flocking to his call as he marched to the overthrow of Barad-dur. And then all the clouds rolled away, and the white sun shone, and at **his command the vale of Gorgoroth became a garden of flowers and trees and brought forth fruit. He had only to put on the Ring and claim it for his own, and all this could be.

Sam, a gardener, sees himself producing gardens with the Ring. It seems probable that the rings saw gold as the easiest way to corrupt the dwarves, who already loved it as the people of Aule.

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    If the rings tempt their bearers according to their nature, and this is deemed to be the 'accepted' answer, why were Elves immune to this and removed their rings and hid them from Sauron? Dec 20, 2012 at 13:47
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    That's not the case though is it? > Sauron encouraged and assisted the Elves in forging the Rings of Power, though in secret Sauron forged his own; the One Ring to rule the Elvish rings. However, as soon as Sauron put the Ring on his finger the Elves sensed his treachery, and thus removed their rings and hid them. lotr.wikia.com/wiki/Sauron So the question remains, why were the Elves not affected in the same was as Dwarves and Men? Dec 20, 2012 at 14:56
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    We can also look at Galadriel's own description of what would happen if she took the One. The rings prey on the weaknesses of their victims, tempting them strongly to do whatever they are already tempted to do. Dec 20, 2012 at 14:58
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    The three were not NOT made by Sauron, and remained good.
    – user8252
    Dec 20, 2012 at 15:09
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    The others were partially made by him, and therefor corrupt.
    – user8252
    Dec 20, 2012 at 15:17

When the Rings of Power were created by Sauron, they harnessed the power to (in a very simplified explanation) enlarge the desires of the races that possessed them, as seen in the Dwarves' greed for money, and Man's greed for power. The 3 Rings that Elrond, Galadriel, and Gandalf bore (or the Elvish Rings) were not fully corrupted as the Elves who made it (Sauron made the Rings for the Dwarves and Men) realized that Sauron had dark purposes in mind for the Rings, and hid them away afterward, therefore preventing the corruption of the three Elvish rings. All ring-bearers, however, are able to sense the presence of other Rings, including the Ring of Power, as seen when Galadriel was able to tell that Frodo had the Ring when he came near.

  • Hi, welcome to SF&F. This doesn't seem to properly answer the question, since you gloss over exactly the details you need to expand on. You need to turn your first sentence into the core of your answer and put in all the details you are eliding, and remove everything following as incidental. You might want to read How to Answer.
    – DavidW
    Apr 27, 2021 at 22:31
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    Sauron only made the One by himself, the Seven and Nine were made by Sauron (in disguise) and the Elves working together, while the Three were made by the Elves alone (but based on what they learned from Sauron). The Elves had no idea of the truth until after all of them were made, the Elven rings were only different due to no direct involvement from Sauron. Apr 27, 2021 at 23:20

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