The White Council, also known as the Council of the Wise formed in the Third Age to oppose Sauron. The Council consisted of Elrond, Galadriel, Círdan, Gandalf, Saruman, and other lords of the Eldar.

Saruman the White was chosen to be their chief because he knew the devices of Sauron of old. Galadriel wanted Gandalf to be the head of the Council but he refused.

In the time that Sauron had begun to return, the White Council was summoned and Gandalf had urged them to take action. However, Saruman spoke against him and announced that they should wait. The rest of the Council did not know that Saruman was already a traitor and was seeking the One Ring of Power himself.

When the shadow of Sauron grew in Mirkwood and the White Council was summoned once again, Gandalf repeated his plea to strike against him and drive him from Mirkwood. Saruman finally agreed and aided the Council for the last time and they drove Sauron from his hold, and Mirkwood for a little while was safe.
Encyclopedia entry originally written by Arien