The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power continues to heat up in terms of its overall issue as we got to see the island of Númenor for the first time before its eventual Downfall. Of course, when we saw Númenor, we were introduced to the leaders of this secluded and isolated island kingdom of Men. The Queen Regent Míriel allowed Galadriel and Halbrand to speak in front of her as she was flanked by a figure named Ar-Pharazôn. So, who is Ar-Pharazôn the Golden in The Rings of Power?
Ar-Pharazôn the Golden is the Chancellor of Númenor and was the one who questioned why Galadriel and Halbrand were there on the island. In the books, Ar-Pharazôn was a man that craved power and eternal life as he usurped the throne of Númenor. It was his actions that also led to the Downfall of Númenor.
At this point, we are yet to see how power-hungry Ar-Pharazôn is, but it won’t be too long until we see him showing his colors as a proud and self-centered character, especially because the Downfall of Númenor is a crucial part of the history of Middle-earth. Now, with that said, let’s take a good look at what we know about Ar-Pharazôn and what his role could possibly be based on the writings of JRR Tolkien.
Who Is Ar-Pharazôn The Golden In The Rings Of Power?
Back in episode 2 of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, we were made to wonder about the fate of Galadriel and Halbrand as they drifted on a small raft after they escaped the sea monster that attacked them earlier. Of course, we did see a ship rescuing them, only to wonder who that ship belonged to because the identity of the person watching them was not revealed.
However, episode 3 of The Rings of Power allowed us to finally meet Elendil, who was the captain that rescued Galadriel and Halbrand from certain death out at sea. The captain brought them to his home, which is the island kingdom of Númenor. As Galadriel explained, Númenor was given to the Men that helped in the fight against Morgoth but has since cut off its ties with Middle-Earth and the Elves for reasons that were unknown. And things became a bit clear when Elendil brought Galadriel and Halbrand in front of the queen regent.
Upon meeting with Queen Míriel in front of the nobles of Númenor, Galadriel realized that her kind was not welcome on that island because the Númenoreans, for some reason, grew to hate the elves, even though they used to be longtime allies. The queen regent was not too welcoming of Galadriel, but it was her adviser that clearly had more misgivings about the presence of the Elf on Númenor. This man was Ar-Pharazôn.
Ar-Pharazôn is actually the chancellor of Númenor, and that means that he is the one in charge of overseeing the governance of the kingdom, all while Queen Míriel served as the regent. As Elendil mentioned in the episode, the kingdom was not entirely stable because of the fact that the people forced the previous king to abdicate the throne. We can only presume that this king, who was friendly towards the Elves, was Tari-Míriel’s father, Tar-Palantir.
In the episode, it did look like Ar-Pharazôn held plenty of power because he was able to stand alongside the queen regent when they were questioning Galadriel and Halbrand. It was actually Ar-Pharazôn who had misgivings about why an Elf and a Man were traveling together. Of course, while the highlight of that scene was Galadriel making demands from the queen, who herself wasn’t willing to give in to what the Elf was asking, Ar-Pharazôn agreed with his queen’s stance against Galadriel.
While Halbrand was able to diffuse the situation by politely asking the queen regent to give them a few days to think about Galadriel’s request, Ar-Pharazôn ordered the guards to keep an eye on the Elf and to make sure that she couldn’t go anywhere near the palace. As such, his power and authority were clearly second only to the queen regent herself.
What Is Ar-Pharazôn’s Role In The Rings Of Power?
At this point, we are yet to learn what Ar-Pharazôn’s greater role is in The Rings of Power because we only just met the character. But we can defer to the writings of JRR Tolkien himself to understand more about Ar-Pharazôn and how he fits into the events surrounding the Second Age of Middle-earth.
Ar-Pharazôn is actually the cousin of Queen Míriel and was the son of the leader of the King’s Men of Númenor. However, as he grew older, he became a man of great pride and had a lust for power. Throughout his history in Tolkien’s writings, he became a great warrior and ship captain as he often quarreled with the other Men on Middle-earth. And he became quite popular with the Númenoreans, who admired his strength and generosity as he shared the wealth he gained with the many different adventures he had against the Men on Middle-earth.
After the death of Tar-Palantir, Ar-Pharazôn saw the absence of a male heir as a chance to grab power for himself. That was when he married Míriel against her will so that he could now become the new ruling king of Númenor. As such, he became even more powerful than he ever was. In fact, Númenor became so great under Ar-Pharazôn that he was able to scare off Sauron’s army and even take the dark lord hostage during the latter portion of the Second Age.
But it was actually Sauron’s deceitful nature that led to Ar-Pharazôn craving more power. The Númenorean king became a worshipper of Morgoth because Sauron was able to convince him that he could cheat his mortality by doing so. And when he became quite old, he heeded Sauron’s words by amassing a great fleet of ships that he used to launch an invasion of Valinor despite the fact that the Valar prohibited the Númenoreans from sailing close to their shores.
Upon Ar-Pharazôn’s arrival on Valinor, the Valar called upon the power of Eru to act on their behalf. That was when the supreme god of the world sank the Númenorean ships and the rest of Númenor with them. Meanwhile, Ar-Pharazôn and his army were buried under a mound of dirt while they were on the shores of Valinor. This also led to Eru changing the entire nature of the world by separating Valinor from the mortal realm so that only the chosen few could go to the Undying Lands.
This event came to be the Downfall of Númenor, as the greatest kingdom of Men succumbed to the selfish nature of humans. Of course, Sauron’s deceitful nature was one of the things that allowed this event to happen, as he feared the power that the Númenoreans had. Nevertheless, Elendil and his son, Isildur, were able to lead a host of survivors of Númenor to Middle-earth to establish the kingdoms of Gondor and Arnor.
It is possible that The Rings of Power will also allow us to see Ar-Pharazôn’s rise to power and Sauron’s cunning nature. That’s because the Downfall of Númenor was one of the most important events in the world of Tolkien’s writings, as there is no doubt that this event will be shown in The Rings of Power. Of course, it would be interesting to see how the series would portray this event and how Ar-Pharazôn contributes to the Downfall of Númenor.