In The Fellowship of the Ring, Aragorn sings of a lady that died in what's referred to as the "Song of Beren and Lúthien".

Has this song got anything to do with Aragorn's mother or Arwen?

Tinúviel the elven-fair,
Immortal maiden elven-wise,
About him cast her night-dark hair,
And arms like silver glimmering...

2 Answers 2


Beren and Luthien were figures in Tolkien's Silmarillion, and fell in love during their fight against the dark lord Morgoth. However, Luthien, who was "the most beautiful of all the Children of Ilúvatar", was an elf, the daughter of the King and Queen of Doriath. Luthien's father did not wish for them to marry, and set the condition of marriage to be the returning of a Silmaril from Morgoth's crown. In the act of completing it, Beren was killed, and Luthien lay down and died of grief. Eru himself offered two choices:

she could either dwell in Valimar with the Valar in bliss forever as reward for all that she had accomplished, or she could be restored to life again with Beren, on the condition that they would both be mortal and die the death of Men. For her love of Beren, Luthien chose the latter.

Because of this, their children would become half-elven, being able to choose either a human or elvish fate. As fabikw notes in his answer, Elrond, who was one of these descendants, chose to become an elf, was Arwen's father, allowing her to make a choice herself. Aragorn was a descendant of Beren, but from a side that chose the human fate. Thus, when they met millenia later, they were a picture of Beren and Luthien. Arwen ultimately made the same choice Luthien did, and became mortal and eventually died (possibly of a broken heart).

So yes, this song has everything to do with Arwen, as it is both a history of her ancestors, as well as a foreshadowing of her life. Arwen was also noted to be very beautiful as her ancestor Luthien was. As an aside, see here for a brief explanation of the significance of Beren and Luthien to Tolkien.

additional note: Aragorn wore the Ring of Barahir as a token of his lineage. Barahir was Beren's father

  • +1 | Excellent answer. The Lay of Beren and Luthien is one of my favorites from the Silmarillion. Jul 30, 2013 at 23:25
  • So that means that They were cousins? Jul 31, 2013 at 12:35
  • Yes. Aragorn's distant ancestor, Elros (dozens of generations), was Elrond's brother, meaning Arwen's grandfather was also a great-great----grandfather of Aragorn.
    – The Fallen
    Jul 31, 2013 at 13:25
  • 1
    I think it important to point out that Luthien's mother, the Queen of Doriath was not an Elf but a Maia (an angelic being who existed before the world was made).
    – horatio
    Jul 31, 2013 at 14:59
  • 1
    Correct. But Luthien was not considered half-elven, because that term was used to describe those that are partially human. Since both parents were immortal, it didn't really affect her much.
    – The Fallen
    Jul 31, 2013 at 15:06

Beren and Luthien are ancestors of both Arwen and Aragorn.

Beren and Luthien's son Dior, had a daughter named Elwing. This daughter had two sons: Elrond and Elros. Elrond who chose to be counted as an Eldar (elf) is Arwen's father. Elros, on the other hand, chose to be counted as an Edain (man). He was the first King of Númenor and thus of the Dúnedain. After a long line of kings, Aragorn was born.

A genealogic tree can be found in this Wikipedia page

  • both, actually. they both gave up their immortality to marry the man they loved and eventually died.
    – The Fallen
    Jul 31, 2013 at 2:00

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.