Amroth and Nimrodel
Amroth's beloved, a beautiful Elf-maiden named Nimrodel, regretted that Elves from Beleriand, which was under assault by Sauron, were being admitted into Lothlórien. She believed that these foreign Elves brought wars and destroyed the peace that Lothlórien's inhabitants had once enjoyed. When Dwarves were driven out of Moria by Orcs and also settled in Lothlórien, Nimrodel fled to Fangorn Forest in TA 1981 (Third Age). Amroth followed her to the forest, which was much closer to Lothlórien than it later became. Nimrodel was too afraid to enter the forest, as she believed that the trees were menacing and some of them moved to bar her entrance.
There, Amroth and Nimrodel had a long discussion. Eventually, the Elf-maiden promised that she would marry Amroth only if he brought her to a peaceful land.
Amroth vowed that he would leave the Elves of Lothlórien, even if a time came when they needed him most. However, none of Middle-earth was at peace and Amroth believed that the Elves would never enjoy peace again. He suggested that he and Nimrodel should travel across the Sundering Seas to the Undying Lands.
Amroth knew that the Sindarin Elves had come to the Bay of Belfalas, a haven south of Lothlórien, long ago. Although the majority of those Elves had left Middle-earth and sailed to the Undying Lands, Amroth was aware that some of their kind still built ships and offered passage to any of the other Elves wishing to leave Middle-earth. After Amroth made the necessary arrangements, he and Nimrodel left Lothlórien.
However, they somehow became separated on their journey. Amroth looked for Nimrodel, but his search was unsuccessful so he continued south towards the Sundering Seas.
Waiting for Nimrodel
At the havens on the Bay of Belfalas, Amroth found that the few remaining Sindarin Elves who remained in Middle-earth were preparing to leave aboard the only sea-worthy ship that they had. Although they welcomed Amroth aboard, they were unwilling to wait for Nimrodel. They hoped that she was in Gondor and that she had not attempted to cross the White Mountains, where many unfriendly Men and evil creatures lived.
The summer was almost over and it would soon be autumn, which was expected to bring dangerously strong winds. However, the Elves saw that Amroth was extremely upset. They had removed all their possessions from their houses on the shore, so they waited with Amroth on their ship for many weeks. Summer passed and autumn came, but Nimrodel still did not arrive.
One night, one of the fiercest storms in the recorded history of Gondor came from the Northern Wastes, swept through Eriador and caused an enormous amount of destruction to Gondor. Many of the ships that Gondorian Men had built were swept away from the coast and sank. The wind broke the light Elven-ship from its moorings and hurled the vessel far from the Bay of Belfalas, driving it towards the coasts of Umbar.
At dawn of the following morning, the storm dissipated. However, when Amroth awoke, he saw that the ship was already far from its port. Full of despair, Amroth screamed Nimrodel's name, threw himself into the water below and drowned.
The ship was never seen again in Middle-earth, although it is likely that the vessel left the Circles of the World and eventually reached Tol Eressëa, an island that the Eldar used to enable them to complete the Great Journey.
Neither Elves nor Men ever saw Amroth or Nimrodel again, but there were many legends concerning Nimrodel's fate.
The Elf-maiden shared her name with a stream where she once lived, which indirectly flowed into the Bay of Belfalas. According to Elven legend, Amroth's voice continued to emanate from the sea and Nimrodel's voice often resonated from the stream that shared her name.
Amroth in Song
An Elven-maid there was of old,
A shining star by day:
Her mantle white was hemmed with gold,
Her shoes of silver-grey.
A star was bound upon her brows,
A light was on her hair
As sun upon the golden boughs
In Lórien the fair.
Her hair was long, her limbs were white,
And fair she was and free;
And in the wind she went as light
As leaf of linden-tree.
Beside the falls of Nimrodel,
By water clear and cool,
Her voice as falling silver fell
Into the shining pool.
Where now she wanders none can tell,
In sunlight or in shade;
For lost of yore was Nimrodel
And in the mountains strayed.
The elven-ship in haven grey
Beneath the mountain-lee
Awaited her for many a day
Beside the roaring sea.
A wind by night in Northern lands
Arose, and loud it cried,
And drove the ship from elven-strands
Across the streaming tide.
When dawn came dim the land was lost,
The mountains sinking grey
Beyond the heaving waves that tossed
Their plumes of blinding spray.
Amroth beheld the fading shore
Now low beyond the swell,
And cursed the faithless ship that bore
Him far from Nimrodel.
Of old he was an Elven-king,
A lord of tree and glen,
When golden were the boughs in spring
In fair Lothlórien.
From helm to sea they saw him leap,
As arrow from the string,
And dive into the water deep,
As mew upon the wing.
The wind was in his flowing hair,
The foam about him shone;
Afar they saw him strong and fair
Go riding like a swan.
But from the West has come no word,
And on the Hither Shore
No tidings Elven-folk have heard
Of Amroth evermore.
Amroth's name means "upclimber" or "high climber" and is a nickname derived from the fact that he lived in a flet built high in the trees on Cerin Amroth. Some sources credit him with the invention of the first flet.
- The Fellowship of the Ring - "Lothlórien", p. 329-332
- Unfinished Tales - "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn and of Amroth King of Lorien," p. 310-313
- The Complete Tolkien Companion - "Amroth", p. 18-19