In Rings of Power Episode 7, Galadriel speaks about her relationship with someone called Celeborn – but who are they in the world of Lord of the Rings?
Episode 7 picks up in the immediate aftermath of Mount Doom’s violent eruption, turning the Southlands into a fiery shadow of itself and leaving several dead.
During the episode, we see Galadriel and Theo trying to make their way back to the Queen Regent and Elendil through the ash-scorched trees, where they hide from Orcs and talk about how to deal with guilt.
In one scene, Galadriel talks about the people she’s lost throughout her long life, including Celeborn. Some viewers won’t recognize the name, but others definitely will – so let’s break down who he is.
Rings of Power: Celeborn explained
Celeborn is Galadriel’s husband. As per Prime Video, he was once a kinsman of Thingol Grey-cloak of Doriath, a King of Elves in the First Age.
Theo asks Galadriel if she’s ever lost anybody close to her, fearing his mother Bronwyn may have died in the eruption. “My brother, Finrod. And my husband,” she says.
“Celeborn was his name. We met in a glade of flowers. I was dancing and he saw me there. The war seemed so very far away then.
“When he went to it, I chided him. His armor didn’t fit properly. I called him a silver clam. I never saw him again after that.”
He was apparently last seen marching to the war, but never returned, and in the Rings of Power’s timeline, it’s not known whether he’s alive or dead – Galadriel’s belief is clearly the latter.
Celeborn in Lord of the Rings, explained
Fans of Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy will remember Celeborn, played by Marton Csokas, and the originator of the meme: “Tell me, where is Gandalf, for I much desire to speak with him?”
He appears in The Fellowship of the Ring and The Return of the King, with his scenes being cut from The Two Towers for running time purposes.
According to J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion, Galadriel and Celeborn got married in the First Age in the elven realm of Doriath, long before the events of Rings of Power. They also have children, including a daughter, Celebrían, who goes onto marry Elrond.
By the time we see them in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, they’re happily ruling the realm of Lothlórien.
However, their history together is infamously difficult to track, as per Tolkien’s son.
In Unfinished Tales, Christopher Tolkien wrote: “There is no part of the history of Middle-earth more full of problems than the story of Galadriel and Celeborn.
“It must be admitted that there are severe inconsistencies ’embedded in the traditions’; or, to look at the matter from another point of view, that the role and importance of Galadriel only emerged slowly, and that her story underwent continual refashionings.”
Here’s our basic understanding of what’s going on between them in Rings of Power: while Galadriel is busy dealing with the threat of Sauron in Middle-earth, Celeborn is alive… somewhere, and down the line, it’s likely they’ll be reunited.
Rings of Power Episode 8 will be available to stream next week. You can sign up to Prime Video here.