The Ice Men of Forochel

Archive Home > Middle-earth People & Races
Romendacil III 10/Dec/2006 at 07:32 AM
Craftsman of Minas Tirith Points: 1771 Posts: 1123 Joined: 02/May/2004
I never thought about this before but where did the Ice Men of Forochel come from? Has anybody ever found anything were Tolkien mentions their lineage? Were they a faction of the Edain who crossed back over to the Blue Mountains before the destruction of Beleriand? It is mentioned that many of the people of Beor were led back over the mountains in the first age. or were they a group of Men that never crossed the mountains into Beleriand. Clearly they are not evil men since they helped Arvedui in his need, granted he gave them The Ring of Barahir to ransom.
Vugar 10/Dec/2006 at 08:04 AM
Chieftain of Mordor Points: 8170 Posts: 5398 Joined: 01/Jun/2004
The Snowmen of Forochel, or Lossoth as they were also known, were the remnant of a people who inhabited that icy region in the far north known as the Forodwaith and in turn shared its name.  To my knowledge, they were unrelated to the Edain.  There is some information on them (or the region of Forochel itself) in footnotes found in both the Appendix and the Unfinished Tales, BoLT II, and two books of the History of Middle-earth (HoMe) series.  I believe those two books are the Treason of Isengard and the Peoples of Middle-earth.
halfir 10/Dec/2006 at 06:59 PM
Emeritus Points: 46547 Posts: 43664 Joined: 10/Mar/2002

King Aldamir:

In App A ROTK the Forodwaith are described as the Lossoth, the Snowmen of Forochel:

Tthe text tells us:"These are a strange, unfriendly people, remnant of the Forodwaith, Men of far-off days, accustomed to the bitter colds of the realms ofMorgoth." (my bold emphasis)

The place and the inhabitants are named the same as Forod is Sindarin for ’north’ and ’waith’for people- hence Land of the North People.

In BOLT 11 (THe History of Eriol or Aelfwine) we are told:"Then AEIfwme...was made a thrall to the fierce lords of the Forodwaith"

and later:

"a large and well-built ship of cunning lines such as the Forodwaith then loved", (ibid)

and CT tells us in a note that:"The Forodwaith are of course Viking invaders from Norway or Denmark" (ibid) and notes that an earlier name for them had been the Gwasgonin or the Winged Helms.(ibid)

By the  time of LOTR the Viking reference of BOLT 11 had disappeared although the name still remained, and the inhabitants  of Lossoth had become  simply the remnants of a once- great people.