The Third House of the Edain
Lands: Hildórien, lands around Estolad, Hithlum, Vales of Ered Wethrin, Dor-lómin
After Men awoke in Hildórien, they began their westward marches, ever seeking for a safe place to settle. The people of the House of Bëor, the First House of the Edain, were the first group of Men to make it over the Blue Mountains. There they were met by the King of Nargothrond, Finrod, and he loved them and took them under his wing. There was such love between Bëor and Finrod that when the king returned to his home land, Bëor went with him and served as his vassal until the day he died.
Shortly after Bëor left with the Eldar king, the Haladin, the Second House of the Edain, came over the mountains but after a time they removed to Thargelion. Last of the groups of Men to make the journey over the mountains was the largest and they all marched under one leader named Marach. They were numerous and they were tall and warlike and marched in ordered companies. When Marach learned that the people of Bëor dwelt in a green and fertile land, they followed and settled to the south and east of Bëor’s people. Ever after there was great friendship between these two peoples.
Fingolfin sent many messages to the Edain and he asked that if any of their young men were willing, that they could come and serve the kings of the Noldor. Malach son of Marach was one who went and he served the king in the lands of Hithlum for many years under the name of Aradan.
The Edain grew restless and seeing this, the Kings of the Noldor offered to the people of the three houses of Elf-friends lands in which they could live amongst the Eldar. Some of the people of Malach came to Hithlum and there they remained. But some followed Magor son of Malach and they passed down the river Sirion into Beleriand and settled in the vales of Ered Wethrin and they took him for lord.
Hador Lórindol (Hador Goldenhead) was the son of Hathol son of Magor. As a young man he entered the service of Fingolfin, the High King of the Noldor, and the Elf-king grew to love him as his own child. He gave to Hador all of the lands of Dor-lómin where he gathered his people, and became the mightiest of the chieftains of the Edain.
The people of the house of Hador Goldenhead “were of great strength and stature, ready in mind, bold and steadfast, quick to anger and to laughter, mighty among the Children of Ilúvatar in the youth of Mankind. Yellow-haired they were for the most part, and blue-eyed.” In the House of Hador, the Third House of the Edain, only the Elven speech was spoken though they did not abandon their own speech altogether, and from it came the speech of Númenor.
During the Dagor Bragollach, so great was Morgoth’s onslaught that Fingolfin and Fingon could not come to the aid of the sons of Finarfin. They were pushed back to the Ered Wethrin where the Men of the House of Hador fought valiantly with the Elves. Hador was slain defending the rearguard of his lord Fingolfin. There also his younger son Gundor was killed. The lordship of Dor-lómin passed to his older son Galdor the Tall. Due to the valor of the Men and Elves of the region, Hithlum was not taken, but Fingolfin was sundered from his kin by a sea of foes.
The folk of the Haladin were fostering the sons of Galdor the Tall for a time, for they were akin. Before the war two of the houses of the Edain (The Haladin and the House of Hador) were joined because Galdor and Glóredhel, the children of Hador Goldenhead, were wedded to Hareth and Haldir, the children of Halmir lord of the Haladin. So Húrin and Huor, the sons of Galdor, were staying in Brethil during the Dagor Bragollach. As the Orcs attacked the Haladin, Húrin and Huor fought alongside their kin and the Elves of Doriath, led by Beleg Strongbow.
It chanced that Húrin and Huor fought with a company that was cut off from the rest and they were pursued to the Fords of Brithiach. There the power of Ulmo was still strong in the river Sirion. The brothers were surrounded by a mist so they were able to escape into Dimbar. Once in Dimbar they wandered until Thorondor, the Lord of Eagles, saw them and he swept down and carried them to the Hidden City of Gondolin where no Man had ever been.
Turgon, the King of Gondolin, had received dreams and messages from Ulmo that he should aid the sons of Hador should they come to him, for from them would come help to him in his greatest need. So Húrin and Huor were housed in Gondolin for a year and Húrin learned much of the Elves and he knew most of the counsels and purposes of the king. The brothers spent much time with the King and he grew to love them. For that reason, and the law of his land that none who would come to the Hidden City may ever leave, Turgon wished for them to stay.
After a time, Húrin and Huor wished to return to their own folk. The brothers promised never to reveal to any the whereabouts of the Hidden City or anything that they had seen or learned there. Turgon made an exception then to his rule and he allowed Húrin and Huor to leave Gondolin the same way that they had come. The eagles came and returned them to their own land. Their own folk were amazed to see them for they had thought them to be dead. When questioned by their father, they would not reveal where they had been housed, though many guessed.
Morgoth desired above all else to find Turgon and Finrod in Gondolin and Nargothrond. Word came to Morgoth of the strange fates of Húrin and Huor, the sons of Galdor, but he waited for many years to recover his army’s strength. During this time, some peace came to the lands.
Once Morgoth was again ready he released a great assault upon Hithlum. During the siege of Eithel Sirion, Galdor the Tall, the lord of Dor-lómin, was slain defending the fortress on behalf of Fingon the High King. Húrin son of Galdor was newly come to manhood and he became lord of Dor-lómin and led his Men against the Orcs. Húrin was of less stature than his fathers, or his son after him; but he was tireless and enduring in body, lithe and swift after the manner of his mother’s kin, Hareth of the Haladin. Finally the Eldar, and the Men who fought with them, had their victory as the ships of Cirdan the Shipwright came to their aid.
When the fifth battle, the Nirnaeth Arnoediad, began Húrin and Huor fought alongside the Elves and Dwarves with many of their folk. Also with them was Haldir of the Haladin with many of his woodland kin. They were combined with all the host of Fingon. They came before the river Sirion and they hid in the woods there and waited for their enemies to close in.
Morgoth had told his Orc Captain to draw Fingon out at all costs. The Orcs came close enough to the hidden host of Fingon that the Elves and Men could see their eyes, but Húrin counseled Fingon to wait. The Orc captain grew impatient and he brought forth Gelmir son of Guilin, a lord of Nargothrond whom they had captured during the Dagor Bragollach. The Orcs yelled that they had many more captives in Angband and that they would deal with them all when they returned in the same way that they dealt with Gelmir. That said, they cut off his hands and feet and finally his head. The host of Fingon became enraged and the war began.
Finally during the battle the host of Turgon of Gondolin was joined with the host of Hithlum as they battled with the army of Morgoth. Turgon met Húrin again in the midst of battle as the man fought alongside his brother Fingon, and they were glad. When the Easterlings who Morgoth had sent to infiltrate the house of the sons of Fëanor turned on Maedhros, the battle went Morgoth’s way. Fingon was slain by Gothmog, the Lord of Balrogs.
Húrin and Huor still stood fighting alongside Turgon and his people from Gondolin. The brothers spoke to Turgon and begged him to escape to the Hidden City, but he would not go. Huor spoke to him and said, “Yet if it (Gondolin) stands but a little while, then out of your house shall come the hope of Elves and Men. This I say to you, lord, with the eyes of death: though we part here for ever, and I shall not look on your white walls again, from you and from me a new star shall arise. Farewell!” With those words Turgon turned and fled as the Men of Dor-lómin held the rearguard and “…of all the deeds of war that the fathers of Men wrought in behalf of the Eldar, the last stand of the Men of Dor-lómin is most renowned.”
Húrin and Huor drew all of the Men of Dor-lómin around them and they withdrew slowly to the Fen of Serech allowing Turgon to escape behind them. All of Angband swarmed around them and Huor was slain by a poisoned arrow that pierced his eye. All of the Men of Hador were slain and were piled up until at last only Húrin stood. Of the tale of Húrin and the remainder of the House of Hador, much is told elsewhere in the following Middle-earth articles:
Tuor of Gondolin
The History of the Númenóreans
House of Hador: the Third House of the Edain
Hador Lórindol– first Lord of Dor-lómin. Granted those lands by King Fingolfin. Killed in the Dagor Bragollach.
1st son: Galdor – wed Hareth of the Haladin
Húrin – wed Morwen of the House of Bëor
Túrin, Lalaith, Nienor Níniel
b. Huor – wed Rían of the House of Bëor
Tuor – wed Idril an Elf of Gondolin
2nd son: Gundor – slain with Hador in Dagor Bragollach
3rd child (daughter): Glóredhel – wed Haldir of the Haladin
child: Brandir – last of the Lord of Haladin of Brethil. Slain by Túrin.
Research by Nienna-of-the-Valar
Information compiled from The Silmarillion