Editor's Note: The following article contains spoilers for episodes 1-4 of The Rings of Power.Prime Videos The long-awaited series Lord of The Rings: The Rings of Power, the latest borrowing from J.R.R Tolkiens' well-known Middle-earth, has taken the audience by surprise. With well-executed references to canonical events and quite a number of backstories Tolkiens ardent fans may be well-versed in, the series almost stands
The greatest episode of the show, "The Great Wave," spotlights Queen Regent Miriel (Cynthia Addai-Robinson) and her father Tar-Palantir's knowledge of the prophecy concerning the doom of Numenor. According to the Queen, the prophecy would be set in motion upon an elf's arrival, a rather explicit hint towards Galadriel (Morfydd Clark) and the source of this futuristic piece of information is
Palantiri, meaning spherical stones, are well-known to Tolkiens followers since they can read beyond the boundaries of their own time. Translated to Quenya, the Elves' language, the palantiri have remained influential in the Lord of the Rings' events, and now that The Rings of Power has introduced its own twist on the unbreakable Seeing Stones, their popularity has never been greater!
What Is the Significance of the Palantiri in Middle-Earth?
The Seven Stones, the more well-known Seven Stars symbol popular among the Elves as a sign of Morgoth's fall, are a testament to Tolkien's genius and his devotion to the smallest details in creating a multimillion-year fantasy world.
The indestructibly huge palantiri were created by the Elves of Valinor in the First Age, and by the time the Lord of the Rings began to unfold, somewhere during the Third Age, only a handful had already suffered the consequences of times wear and tear, a fact that continues to stand in Peter Jacksons film trilogy of the same name.
How Do Palantiri Work?
Although a great number of palantiri were created in Tolkien's book, the great Elendil, following the destruction of Numenor, carries only seven stones to Middle-earth: the Osgilath stone, the largest and highest among all; the Itnil-stone, later channeled by Sauron; the Orthanc stone, a reason for the wizard Sarumans' ultimate demise; the Amon Sul-stone, which cannot be lifted by one man alone
A palantir has both the capacity to talk with another stone wielder and to look back into the future, but there's a significant twist in the tale! The palantiri respond to their masters power, and should their channelers be knowledgeable enough to place the great object in the most favorable places the stones are unlikely to do well in darkness, for instance they might look into any part of the world!
In many instances, the palantiri have indeed shaped Middle-earth into what it is today.
The Palantiri Is Often Used for Evil
Sauron, the antagonist, manipulates the palantiri for his own benefit on several occasions, using that knowledge for personal gain, warping the stones produced images to monitor and weaken his opposition. At one point, he is able to enthuse Saruman, instructing him to build an army worthy of Mordor once completely in control of the being. On a separate occasion, his altered visions to Denethor cause the man to take his own life.
When Pippin, after experiencing the wonders of the crystal, steals it from a sleeping Gandalf, Sauron makes a number of incorrect assumptions and half-assessments, including the fact that the One Ring is in the hands of a hobbit. Sauron accepts that Pippin is indeed in charge of the Ring, since he has been working alongside him.
The glimpse of Aragorn looking into Sarumans palantir makes Sauron believe the ranger has been defeated, while Frodo is holding the ring securely. This is not to say that Aragorn is not willing to suffer such injustice for a second time, as Sauron follows him in a battle of wills, retrieving his forces from Mordor and allowing Frodo easy access, while unknowingly turning his back on a conflict he could easily have won.
The palantiri have proved to be a valuable, if somewhat consequential, tool in their deception. But, what is most striking is that, being one of Tolkien's most vital, almost sacral, sections of history, they have made their official debut in The Rings of Power, which is sure to enthuse any fan's imagination.