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Shadowfax

Location(s): Rohan

Race/Species: Beasts & Monsters

Type/Kind: N/A

Title(s):
Chief of the Mearas
Lord of Horses
Prince of Horses

Dates: First appears TA 3018 - Fourth Age

Description:
'That is Shadowfax. He is the Chief of the Mearas, lord of horses, and not even Théoden, King of Rohan, has ever looked on a better. Does he not shine like silver and run as smoothly as a swift stream? He has come for me: the horse of the White Rider. We are going to battle together.'

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 5, The White Rider

'Never have we seen ... any horse more proud than is one of these that bear you. He is one of the Mearas, unless our eyes are cheated by some spell.'

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 6, The King of the Golden Hall

[Said Gandalf,] 'But as for your gift, lord, I will choose one that will fit my need: swift and sure. Give me Shadowfax! He was only lent before, if loan we may call it. But now shall ride him into great hazard, setting silver against black: I would not risk anything that is not my own. And already there is a bond of love between us.'

'You choose well,' said Théoden; 'and I give him now gladly. Yet it is a great gift. There is none like to Shadowfax. In him one of the mighty steeds of old has returned. None such shall return again.'

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 6, The King of the Golden Hall

'Where is Shadowfax?' said Gandalf.

'Running wild over the grass,' they answered. 'He will let no man handle him.' ...

Gandalf whistled and called aloud the horse's name, and far away he tossed his head and neighed, and turning sped towards the host like an arrow.

'Were the breath of the West Wind to take a body visible, even so would it appear,' said Éomer, as the great horse ran up, until he stood before the wizard.

'The gift seems already to be given,' said Théoden. 'But hearken all! Here now I name my guest, Gandalf Greyhame, wisest of counsellors; most welcome of wanderers, a lord of the Mark, a chieftain of the Eorlingas while our kin shall last; and I give to him Shadowfax, prince of horses.'

'I thank you, Théoden King,' said Gandalf. Then suddenly he threw back his grey cloak, and cast aside his hat, and leaped to horseback. He wore no helm nor mail. His snowy hair flew free in the wind, his white robes shone dazzling in the sun.

'Behold the White Rider!' cried Aragorn, and all took up the words.

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 6, The King of the Golden Hall

... like an arrow from the bow the great horse sprang away. Even as they looked he was gone: a flash of silver in the sunset, a wind over the grass, a shadow that fled and passed from sight."

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 7, Helm's Deep

Over the plains Shadowfax was flying, needing no urging and no guidance. Less than an hour had passed [since leaving Dol Baran], and they had reached the Fords of Isen [about fifteen miles away] ...

'I did not know you rode bare-back, Gandalf,' [Pippin] said. 'You haven't a saddle or a bridle!'

'I do not ride elf-fashion, except on Shadowfax,' said Gandalf. 'But Shadowfax will have no harness. You do not ride Shadowfax: he is willing to carry you -- or not. If he is willing, that is enough. It is then his business to see that you remain on his back, unless you jump off into the air.'

'How fast is he going?' asked Pippin. 'Fast by the wind, but very smooth. And how light his footfalls are!'

'He is running now as fast as the swiftest horse could gallop,' answered Gandalf; 'but that is not fast for him. The land is rising a little here, and is more broken than it was beyond the river.'

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 11, The Palantír

Then Círdan led them to the Havens, and there was a white ship lying, and upon the quay beside a great grey horse stood a figure robed all in white awaiting them. As he turned and came towards them Frodo saw that Gandalf now wore openly upon his hand the Third Ring, Narya the Great....

The Return of the King, LoTR Book 6, Ch 9, The Grey Havens

Contributors:
Levade, 01.06.03
Marta, 04.04.04, 04.15.04
added quote: Elena Tiriel 18Jan05, 5Feb05, 14Apr05

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