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Galadriel-01 Galadriel is the Lady of the Elves in J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. She is married to Celeborn, Lord of the Elves, and they live together in Lothlórien. In the Peter Jackson movies, she was played by Cate Blanchett. Two good sources of information about her are Wikipedia and the Tolkien Less FAQ.

I've had my pages about the names Miranda and Galadriel on the internet since 1993. I used to have a Miranda guestbook where I asked other Mirandas to say hi, and it would get a dozen entries every day. I personally have met six other Mirandas in my lifetime, a search on LinkedIn returns 37,000 results, and there's even another Miranda Flory on Facebook.

In contrast, I have only heard of one other person named Galadriel, and she was in the Netherlands. A search on LinkedIn returns just 42 results, and some of those are for company descriptions. An extremely uncommon name.

Galadriel's Names

Galadriel had two given names. Her father-name was Artanis, meaning noble woman, and her mother-name was Nerwen, meaning manly maiden, because of her height and strength. Galadriel was a call name or nickname given to her by her husband, Celeborn, meaning Maiden Crowned with a Radiant Garland, because of her beautiful hair. Galadriel is the Sindarin version of her name. She was called Alatáriel in Telerin and Altáriel in Quenya. She went by the name Galadriel because she felt it was the most beautiful of her names.

Her hair was very beautiful. It glowed with such a radiance that the Eldar said that the blended light of the Two Trees must have been emeshed in its strands. Fëanor was said to have been so captivated by its beauty that he begged her three times for a lock of her hair. She refused and they were estranged, but it is said that from this Fëanor conceived of the Silmarils.

That was when she was younger; by the time of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, she was over 10,000 years old. When Gimli asked for a lock of her hair she granted his request. She also refused Frodo's offer to become caretaker of the One Ring, fearing that it would corrupt her. These acts showed the humbling of her pride, resulting in the lifting of the ban against her returning to the Undying Lands, allowing her to sail with the others back to Valinor at the end of The Return of the King.

Galadriel's Ring

Sauron, the Lord of the Rings, forged many Rings of Power to corrupt the rulers of Middle Earth.

Three Rings for the Elven-kings under the sky,
Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone,
Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die,
One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.
One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

Galadriel wore one of the "three rings for the Elven kings under the sky." Her ring was Nenya, the Ring of Water. It was made a mithril, a stong silver-like material used for armor, and was adorned with a white stone, probably a diamond. It gave the bearer the power of preservation, protection, and possibly concealment. While Sauron was in power, Galadriel never used her ring because she distrusted him. When the One Ring was lost, she used her ring to hide and protect Lothlórien, retreating from Middle Earth politics and wars as much as possible. When the One Ring was destroyed, her ring's power faded.

Gandalf's Song of Lórien

In Dwimordene, in Lórien
Seldom have walked the feet of Men,
Few mortal eyes have seen the light
That lies there ever, long and bright.
Galadriel! Galadriel!
Clear is the water of your well;
White is the star in your white hand;
Unmarred, unstained is leaf and land
In Dwimordene, in Lórien
More fair than thoughts of Mortal Men.