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Old 05-31-2006, 05:10 PM   #1
Letty
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Did Legolas have any brothers or sisters?

Did Legolas have any brothers or sisters?
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Old 06-27-2006, 12:22 AM   #2
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That's a big negative there. In fact, if you happen to run into Thranduil, ask him about his wife. For as family trees go, there are many branches that have been cut down in the Greenleaf family tree.

Maybe its that whole, 'Are you Silvan or Sindar', that puts a haze on the history.
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Old 08-04-2006, 08:38 AM   #3
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I don't think it's something that can be definitively answered. We are never told that Legolas had any brothers or sisters, but simply because we aren't told doesn't mean it can't be inferred.

Not much is known on Legolas, probably because of the late development of the character (Legolas wasn't even a character thought about by Tolkien when he was writing The Hobbit). But, I've always found interesting why would Thranduil send his only son and heir as a messenger? Because that's what Legolas was at the Council, he was delivering a message. Now why would Thranduil send his only son away (when they are facing attacks from Dol Guldur) as a messenger?

I'm not saying that for sure Legolas had siblings, but I don't think it's something that can be answered with a simple, 'No it's not possible.'
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Old 08-04-2006, 10:40 AM   #4
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I presume that Legolas had a guard with him in Rivendell, though. Sneaking through the forests, accompanied by a few hardy Elves? It wouldn't be bizarre to send your only child to the Council, especially if Thranduil guessed the importance of the Gollum situation, and what it might lead to.
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Old 08-06-2006, 11:08 PM   #5
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And of course personally, I don't think Legolas had any siblings of any sort at all. I just don't think it's a simple 'no, not possible' type answer. Just trying to get us all to expand our minds more, and something that isn't ever told or said, doesn't necessarily mean it's not a possibility.

Or, Thranduil could figure that he's going to sit back in his cave for the rest of his life and just say in Mirkwood, therefor there's no point in having an heir...(which he seems to do at this point in LOTR)?

But, Legolas was rather young for an Elf, and this wouldn't seem something of dire need especially with Dol Guldur active and breathing down Thranduil's neck. Now, Boromir, heir and eldest of Denethor's was sent to Rivendell, but he forced his way until daddy said 'ok,' was getting answers to a puzzling riddle, and also there was always Faramir.
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Old 08-07-2006, 08:36 AM   #6
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Or maybe Thranduil secretly feared that Legolas would usurp his throne, and so sent him to his likely death.

Think about what we know of the Mirkwood realm. Thranduil was very greedy. He wanted a lot of the riches from the Lonely Mountain despite having no decent claim on it. He was very prepared to sacrifice a lot of his fighters for a share of the spoils.

His rule was, to be blunt, a bit farcical. He held Bilbo and the Dwarves as prisoners in his domain. Gee, nice judge of character, old man. What's more, he was careless with them: assigning the task of supervising the prisoners to a few inebriated lackeys. The role of governer had obviously turned into a joke for the Elven-King.

What could cause such avarice, paranoia, carelessness, and incompetence? The appearance of the Necromancer? Or the problem of his brilliant and handsome son, ripe for Kingship?

You decide.
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Old 08-07-2006, 10:30 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boromir88
I just don't think it's a simple 'no, not possible' type answer. Just trying to get us all to expand our minds more, and something that isn't ever told or said, doesn't necessarily mean it's not a possibility.

If you bring back a 'Can Balrogs Fly (coulda, whoulda, shoulda)' thread.....
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Old 08-07-2006, 03:15 PM   #8
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How many children did elves typically have? I always thought that Elrond was one of the more prolific ones, with three (granted two are twins). Is that pretty much the upper limit for elves? Was one more common?

After all, parenting for a millenium would be a very effective impetus to planned parenthood I would think.
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Old 08-07-2006, 03:41 PM   #9
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Well, Feanor had 7, Finarfin had 5, and Fingolfin had 3 as well. Elrond also had a brother. However, Thingol's line seems to be consistant with 1 or 2.

The Half-elven seem to be the most reproductive, probably hoping that at least one of their kids would stay to their Elven heritage.
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Old 08-07-2006, 06:28 PM   #10
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!throw The Silmarillion Bęthberry

How could you forget Feanor?

I would 'assume' that Elves cherish their family tree, relishing their heritage (always an exception of course). And most would not hold back in relating this fact to non-knowing others. Since Legolas and Thranduil never made mention of another child/sibling it was either not easily relatable to the story, not important enough to further the plot, not thought of at the time by the Prof, or simply just didn't happen.

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Eomer of the Rohirrim - Or maybe Thranduil secretly feared that Legolas would usurp his throne, and so sent him to his likely death.
Since the Elves were leaving, why would he have thought that?
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Old 08-08-2006, 04:55 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boromir88
Well, Feanor had 7, Finarfin had 5, and Fingolfin had 3 as well. Elrond also had a brother. However, Thingol's line seems to be consistant with 1 or 2.
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How could you forget Feanor?
Gentlemen, gentlemen, gentleman. Although this topic might be a bit soft for your chromosome type, I was assuming we were considering the final stages of the Third Age, wherein the elves were beginning to dwindle and shrink from sight. Under such conditions, their generation would decline from its initial heights with the peak of Feanor, whose prodigious performance was therefore neither relevant nor reproducible.
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Old 08-08-2006, 08:33 AM   #12
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How about that for growing pains?
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Old 08-08-2006, 11:30 AM   #13
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Doesn't matter that you're leaving if you're power-hungry to that extent. What of the man who wanted to destroy the world so that others may not have it?

Anyway, it was mirth.
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Old 08-08-2006, 11:43 AM   #14
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I was assuming we were considering the final stages of the Third Age, wherein the elves were beginning to dwindle and shrink from sight.
Then wouldn't elves be trying to have a lot of children, to try and increase their number?

I personlly think that Legolas did have brothers and sisters, atleast 1, just so that if anything happened to one kid Thranduil would still have another heir. I mean, ya he's immortal, but elves still die, in wars and such, I think he would want to be 100% sure that there was an heir sitting at home ready to take his place if he perished. Only having one kid doesn't garantee that.

Though it's possible that, since Legolas' mother is never mentioned, she may have died somehow, right after Legolas was born, and never had the chance to have other children, and a broken hearted Thranduil never re-married.

Practically anything is possible.
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Old 08-08-2006, 01:15 PM   #15
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In HoME there is an essay on the laws and customs of the Eldar regarding marriage which includes some information on elvish procreation. So rather less than anything is possible if this is taken in to account. Also I think it is vital to remember that Elves are immortal and so aren't driven by the same biological imperative as mortals.

Firstly Elves cannot remarry (Finwe was the disastrous exception that proves the rule). Because an Elvish death within Arda is temporary it does not end the marriage. Pre-marital sex is not possible for elves and extra-marital sex is not an option either so no half sibs. If you want to know why read Morgoth's Ring or this highly informative and amusing article.

Now as is explained in LACE having children is more permanently debilitating for elves than humans and families with more than 3 children were uncommon.
Feanor was unequalled as the father of seven sons. Now this was in Valinor when the Eldar were at the height of their vigour and Feanor is almost certainly the most vigourous Elda ever (remember Miriel saying he had taken from her the strength of several sons).... not a huge surprise that Nerdanel chose to stay behind. The other recorded larger families (of Feanor's brothers) are all Valinorean born. Although elves don't die in Arda their spirits start to dominate over their bodies and their immortality seems more burdensome. Physically and emotionally it is unlikely that there were many if any very young elves at the end of the third age. Arwen was not known as the Evenstar for nothing. At 3000 she was quite possible the youngest of the Noldor - certainly of any significance. Celebrian's ability to make a full recovery in Middle Earth may have been compromised by having born 3 children late.

While it is probable that the Sindarin and silvan elves who were staying in middle Earth may have been less effected by fin d'epoque ennui, if Legolas had siblings (finally getting to the point) he was unlikely to have had more than 2. Certainly the fact that they aren't mentioned is not decisive. Fond as many of us are of him, Legolas was the last to join the Fellowship (in terms of book development) and though he has my favourite speech in the whole book and provides a few insights (he also has a few regrettable "tralalally" moments) into the elvish mindset we know least about his background than the rest.

As for Thranduil taking a chance by sending his presumably only son to Rivendell - well he surely would have had companions on the journey- and it was a "high level" conference. Thranduil wouldn't have sent just anyone and for the story it was symbolically important that it was someone of high status in their own community. If you look at the dwarves family tree, Gloin and Gimli are the closest living relatives of Dain and his heir. It is appropriate that someone of similar status is witness to the handover to the age of men.

So after all that the answer is maybe but since they weren't relevant to the plot we don't know. However when I RPGed Thranduil elsewhere I gave Legolas a younger sister .... but I am not claiming that as canon...
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