Sauron took on the fair form of Annatar, the Lord of Gifts, saying he was an emissary from the Valar.

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“Alas, for the weakness of the great! For a mighty king is Gil-galad, and wise in all lore is Master Elrond, and yet they will not aid me in my labours. Can it be that they do not desire to see other lands become as blissful as their own?” ~ Annatar

Annatar In Shadow Of Mordor Game

Annatar in Shadow of Mordor game

500 years after Morgoth’s defeat at the Dagor Dagorath, Sauron returned to Middle-earth from Valinor. In time he swayed many men to his service; Elves were not so easily ensnared.  In the year 1200 (Second Age), Sauron took on the fair form of Annatar, the Lord of Gifts, saying he was an emissary from the Valar.


After lying in concealment for five centuries, Sauron emerged from the shadows once again. By 1000 (Second Age), he had amassed considerable power, establishing his dominion in the desolate land of Mordor in eastern Middle-earth. He established his fortress, Barad-dûr, near the ominous Mount Doom. Fueled by a fervent desire for order, he aspired to become a god-king, wielding “absolute temporal power over the whole world.”

Sauron coveted the allegiance of the Elves, recognizing their formidable might. Around 1500 (Second Age), he adopted a fair guise and assumed the name Annatar, the “Lord of Gifts.” In this guise, Sauron presented himself as an emissary of the Valar, purportedly anticipating the arrival of the Istari.

Presenting himself as Annatar, Sauron cultivated friendships with the Elven smiths of Eregion, among them Celebrimbor, the greatest of craftsmen and a descendant of Fëanor. He shared his counsel on arts and magic, seeking to win their trust. However, not all Elves were swayed; suspicions lingered, particularly among Lady Galadriel, Elrond, and Gil-galad, the High King of the Ñoldor. Some accounts even suggest that Sauron clandestinely befriended the Elven smiths of Gwaith-i-Mírdain without the knowledge of Galadriel and Celeborn. In certain versions of the tale, Sauron’s influence over Gwaith-i-Mírdain grew so strong that he incited them to rebel against Galadriel and Celeborn, forcing them to abandon Eregion, allowing Sauron to work unopposed.

Videos Discussing Annatar

Elves Welcome and Galadriel’s Distrust

Annatar found a warm welcome in various places, particularly in Eregion, where almost everyone embraced him, except for Galadriel, who had her doubts. The skilled Elven smiths of Eregion were eager learners, soaking up Annatar’s teachings in the arts and magic because they were hungry for knowledge. Guided by Annatar and led by Celebrimbor, Fëanor’s grandson, the Gwaith-i-Mírdain became incredibly skilled, rivalling even the legendary Fëanor himself. Around the year 1500 (Second Age), at the pinnacle of their abilities, the Elves embarked on the project of crafting the Rings of Power. Annatar assured them that these rings would be instrumental in preserving their influence and mastery over Middle-earth.