Saruman, also known as Curunír, Sharkey and the White Wizard, was a skilled and crafty Maia, once the head of the Order of the Wizards and the chief of the White Council before becoming, by the late Third Age, the power-hungry vassal of Sauron the Enemy. From his fortress-tower of Orthanc in Isengard, he plots how to share in his master's power by either aiding in his victory over Middle-earth or obtaining the One Ring first.
- A mighty Maia of Aulë, Saruman was sent by the Valar with four others (Gandalf, Radagast, Alatar, and Pallando) from Valinor to Middle-earth to guide the Free Peoples in countering the returned Sauron. However, he soon developed an admiration for the Dark Lord, whom he wished to imitate and eventually equal, and delved into the study of his devices, especially the lore of the Great Rings. From the beginning he had also reserved much envy for Gandalf and set spies to watch his movements, thus learning of the Shire. Turning his back on the White Council, the Wizard was dominated through the palantír by the Dark Lord, whose triumph he now desired - if the opportunity arose, however, he wanted to seize the One Ring for himself. Saruman's minions included Orcs, Half-orcs, Uruk-hai, Wargs and Trolls, but also some Men, such as the Dunlendings. Having nominally sworn Isengard's fealty to Mordor though also pursuing his own interests, Saruman moved at Sauron's bidding against the neighbouring kingdom of Rohan, while also harrying the Fellowship of the Ring and establishing a network of agents throughout Eriador in competition of the forces of Angmar. The battle at Helm's Deep and the unexpected attack of the Ents resulted in both the Wizard's downfall and the vanquishing of much of his army.
- Saruman is fought during the Tower of Orthanc 12-man raid. For information about his vitals during this encounter, see Saruman (The Tower of Orthanc).
-  Instance: The Auction solo
Vol. 3, Book 4
-  Chapter 20: In the Presence of Saruman Solo
-  Instance: In the Presence of Saruman
-  Instance: The Wizard's Vale Session play
-  Instance: Man and Monster
-  Chapter 3: High and Low
- "Isengard bids five."
In the movie The Return of the King Saruman dies in Orthanc, being thrown down and impaled on a spiked wheel of a machine. However, in the books, Saruman rather went on with the scouring of the Shire where he later died when Grima slashed his throat. (And Grima then died being shot by Hobbits when he tried to escape.) It should be noted that Lotro closely follows the books.