MANWË [Noble One of Authority]
This representation from Montfaucon's Antiquities [Nürnberg, 1757] depicts the Demiurgus of the Greeks and the Gnostics. While Tolkien does not describe Manwë the Lord of the Valar in any detail, he says the chief Vala resided on the highest mountain top [Taniquetil], and relied on the eyes of the high-flying eagles to watch over Middle-earth.
[The Valar and greater Maiar could assume physical form of their own choosing.]
YAVANNA [yávë fruit + anna gift = Giver of Fruits]
The image of the Ephesian Artemis displays multiple breasts,
denoting her station of goddess of fertility. The theme of the
'Earth Mother' with many breasts is emblematic of this
generous friendly spirit that was believed to nurture
humankind. Some depictions of Artemis of Ephesus
show her with a headdress of a tower, an image Tolkien
may have had in mind in one name of Varda, Queen of
the Valar, as Elbereth [which contains the base BARATH,
BARÁD- lofty > barad tower.]
VARDA [from the base BARÁD- Lofty]
Queen of the Valar. Shown here as
[Elbereth |see previous|] Gilthoniel
[GIL- 'star' + THAN 'kindle' + -iel
feminine name suffix = |Lady| Star
Kindler]. The graphic is an imprint
of a classic Greek beauty and a light-
burst pattern. The figure of the Lady
is from a painting of the fall of Troy.
Elbereth Gilthoniel: Sublime Star Kindler
AULË [from the base GAWA- devise =
This is the author's conceptualisation of
the Vala Aulë carving out a ghyll as he
fashions the nature of the visible Earth.
Aulë also created the Dwarves, who
loved to work with stone - although the
act was not in the will of Ilúvatar, who
created the Erusen [Children of Ilúvatar:
Elves and Men]. By the grace of Ilúvatar
the Dwarves were spared, however.
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