In dwarven legend, the dwarves swear that the greatest of the 7 dwarven rings was given to Durin by Celebrimbor rather than Sauron. If he did how could Celebrimbor (when captured by Sauron personally) reveal to Sauron the location of the 7 dwarven rings if one was already with Durin or did Sauron maybe make himself to the eyes of Durin look like Celebrimbor?

From Appendix A:

Of this Ring something may be said here. It was believed by the Dwarves of Durin's Folk to be the first of the Seven that was forged; and they say that it was given to the King of Khazad-dûm, Durin III, by the Elven-smiths themselves and not by Sauron, though doubtless his evil power was on it, since he had aided in the forging of the Seven

1 Answer 1


Maybe, but I'm inclined to say "no"

There are two main accounts of the origins of the Seven; the one in The Silmarillion suggests that Sauron took the Seven and the Nine when he sacked Eregion in SA 1697:

From that time war never ceased between Sauron and the Elves; and Eregion was laid waste, and Celebrimbor slain, and the doors of Moria were shut. In that time the stronghold and refuge of Imladris, that Men called Rivendell, was founded by Elrond Half-elven; and long it endured. But Sauron gathered into his hands all the remaining Rings of Power; and he dealt them out to the other peoples of Middle-earth, hoping thus to bring under his sway all those that desired secret power beyond the measure of their kind. Seven Rings he gave to the Dwarves;

The Silmarillion V Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age

But the account in Unfinished Tales is more ambiguous:

There Sauron took the Nine Rings and other lesser works of the Mírdain; but the Seven and the Three he could not find. Then Celebrimbor was put to torment, and Sauron learned from him where the Seven were bestowed. This Celebrimbor revealed, because neither the Seven nor the Nine did he value as he valued the Three; the Seven and the Nine were made with Sauron's aid, whereas the Three were made by Celebrimbor alone, with a different power and purpose.

Unfinished Tales Part 2: The Second Age Chapter IV: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn"

The word "bestow" is the sticking point in the UT account; the word has two meanings that could apply, and each one changes the story significantly:

  1. to present as a gift; confer.
  2. (Archaic) to put; stow; deposit; store.

If Tolkien is using the first definition, we might presume that all of the Seven had been given to the dwarfs by the Elves of Eregion; if the second, they were not and Sauron gave them out himself. Then again, Tolkien may also be playing with the twin definitions: perhaps Celebrimbor handed out some of the Seven, and Sauron the rest.

Christopher Tolkien, for what it's worth, believes that Sauron found the Seven in Eregion. In a parenthetical following the quote above, he writes:

It is not actually said here that Sauron at this time took possession of the Seven Rings, though the implication seems clear that he did so. In Appendix A (III) to The Lord of the Rings it is said that there was a belief among the Dwarves of Durin's Folk that the Ring of Durin III, King of Khazad-dûm, was given to him by the Elven-smiths themselves, and nothing is said in the present text about the way in which the Seven Rings came into possession of the Dwarves.

Unfinished Tales Part 2: The Second Age Chapter IV: "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn"

I've scoured History of Middle-earth looking for any clarification, and found none1. On a personal note, I'm inclined to agree with Christopher Tolkien; whenever a question of word definition comes up in Tolkien's work, I've found it's rarely a bad policy to assume he's using the archaic definition.

1 Although I did find a ton of references to the number seven; Tolkien seems to have liked the number

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