The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Dates
Peregrin Took lived III 2990 - c. IV 70; he was known as Ernil i Pheriannath after his arrival in Minas Tirith on 9 March III 3019
Race
Culture
Family
Settlements
The title Ernil i Pheriannath was used by the Men of Minas Tirith
Pronunciation
e'rneel ee feree'annath
Meaning
Other names
Title of

Indexes:

About this entry:

  • Updated 20 July 2021
  • Updates planned: 1

Ernil i Pheriannath

Prince of the Halflings

At sunrise on 9 March III 3019, the people of Minas Tirith saw a strange sight: the grey figure of Mithrandir (their name for Gandalf) mounted on Shadowfax and accompanied by a figure out of legend: a perian or Halfling. They rode immediately to the Citadel to confer with Denethor, and after their passing rumours began to spring up about Mithrandir's mysterious companion. Since he was in the company of a Wizard, and went directly into long counsel with the Steward, the people assumed that the Halfling must be a noble, and entitled him Ernil i Pheriannath, 'Prince of the Halflings'. Even more rumours sprang up around the 'prince', and by the time he emerged from Denethor's audience chamber, it was being said that he would bring five thousand more of his kind to Gondor's aid, or that the Rohirrim would ride to Minas Tirith each carrying a Halfling warrior.

The mysterious Halfling prince was Peregrin Took, and he countered the rumours, explaining that he was not a leader of his people, nor were armies of Hobbit warriors on their way to relieve the city. Nonetheless the people of Minas Tirith took him to their hearts, and even after discovering the truth, they still used the title they had given him: Ernil i Pheriannath, 'Prince of the Halflings'.

Though Pippin denied the title of 'prince', it was not entirely inappropriate. As the son and heir to Thain Paladin II of the Shire, he was as close to a being a prince as it was possible to come in Shire society. Of course, the people of Gondor were thinking in quite different terms - to them the title Ernil or 'Prince' typically denoted an important lord or leader such as the Prince of Dol Amroth or the Prince of Ithilien.


Notes

1

The Elvish word for 'Halflings' was Periannath, so we might expect 'Prince of the Halflings' to be Ernil in Periannath. However, under certain conditions, Sindarin demonstrated an effect known as mutation, in which sounds change following distinct rules. One of these conditions is the appearance of the in-p combination which, following the rules of mutation, becomes i-ph. Hence 'Prince of the Halflings' in Sindarin Elvish translates as Ernil i Pheriannath rather than Ernil in Periannath.

Indexes:

About this entry:

  • Updated 20 July 2021
  • Updates planned: 1

For acknowledgements and references, see the Disclaimer & Bibliography page.

Original content © copyright Mark Fisher 1998, 2001, 2013, 2021. All rights reserved. For conditions of reuse, see the Site FAQ.

Website services kindly sponsored by Axiom Discovery aptitude and skill testing.
Personality is one part of understanding a candidate's suitability, but aptitudes and skills are also key.
The Encyclopedia of Arda
The Encyclopedia of Arda
Menu
Homepage Search Latest Entries and Updates Random Entry