Who Is Galadriel’s Brother in The Rings of Power? Meet Finrod

finrod battle

When The Lord of The Rings: The Rings of Power was announced, it was clear that a good part of the storyline would revolve around Galadriel and her quest to find Sauron and put an end to his evil. Nevertheless, we still saw her early beginnings when she was still in Valinor and before she came to Middle Earth to help in the fight against Morgoth. During her earlier life, the figure that was extremely influential to her was her brother. So, who is Galadriel’s brother in The Rings of Power?

Galadriel’s brother is Finrod, who is the eldest of Finarfin. Finrod, in the books, was an Elven king that ruled his own kingdom. However, in The Rings of Power, it seems that his sole mission was to defeat Sauron, who was the sole remnant of Morgoth’s terror. However, Sauron struck first and killed Finrod.

As mentioned, Galadriel is the central character of The Rings of Power, as it was the fact that her brother fell to Sauron that made her so obsessed with finding the dark lord. In that regard, it is clear that Finrod’s influence on Galadriel is one of the motivating factors that the elven leader is holding onto when it comes to her quest to put an end to Sauron, wherever he may be.

Who Is Galadriel’s Brother In The Rings Of Power?

The Lord of The Rings: The Rings of Power opens up with a quick history lesson regarding Galadriel and her origins. Of course, the books were always so open about the fact that Galadriel came from the Undying Lands and was the daughter of elven royalty in Valinor. While that fact was not clear in the opening scenes of episode 1, it was still clear that she had a somewhat happy and peaceful life in Valinor, despite getting bullied by the other elven kids for wanting to dream big.

Galadriel, of course, wasn’t too happy with the kids bullying her as she ended up quarreling with them. Then her big brother came to save the day and teach her valuable lessons that eventually stuck with her throughout her entire life. This big brother was Finrod, who was the eldest son of their father, Finarfin.

Finrod didn’t take time to teach valuable lessons to the young Galadriel, who was about to beat up the other elven children that were bullying her. True to his nature as a wise older brother, Finrod was the one who taught Galadriel the value of always “looking up” instead of “looking down” when it came to her goals and aspirations. For example, he used Galadriel’s makeshift paper boat to teach her why a boat floats, and a stone sinks, as he told her that a ship looks up instead of down. He was also the one who told her that it was best to learn what it meant to be in the dark to understand which light to follow whenever she was deciding which path she should take in life.

finrod valinor

Of course, Finrod didn’t have the same kind of backstory in the books because the series looked to make his relationship with Galadriel much more meaningful than JRR Tolkien’s works. Instead, he was more of an ambitious king than a wise older brother as he ended up sailing all the way to Middle-Earth from Valinor, together with Galadriel and all of the other elves that followed Fëanor to reclaim the Silmarils from Morgoth, who had stolen them from the greatest elf of all time.

In the books, Finrod ended up learning from a Valar named Ulmo how to access a hidden network of underground caves that he eventually used to establish his own city called Nargathrond, which he ruled as king. During that time, he was able to keep his kingdom safe from Morgoth because of the fact that it was hidden deep underground. Nevertheless, the city didn’t live to survive through the First Age, as it was no longer around during the Second Age in The Rings of Power.


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Of course, while there are differences between how Tolkien wrote about Finrod and Galadriel and how the series portrayed them, the fact is that they were the closest of all of the children of Finarfin. In the books, Galadriel often visited her brother in her city during the First Age. But there was a huge difference in the way The Rings of Power portrayed this sibling relationship, as it was Finrod who became Galadriel’s motivation to try to end Sauron once and for all so that peace may reign in Middle-Earth.

Tolkien wrote Finrod the same way as The Rings of Power portrayed him. In the books, Finrod and a company of elves sought out Sauron due to one of the oaths he made. He had an oath to Barahir, a descendent from the House of Bëor, after he was saved from what could have been a sure death at the hands of Morgoth. And it was this oath that he made with Barahir—sealed with a ring that Finrod gave him—that forged a friendship between elves and men. 

finrod book

Finrod, thanks to the oath that he swore to Barahir, had to hunt down Sauron because one of Barahir’s descendants, Beren, invoked the oath. As such, Finrod had to seek out Sauron in an attempt to fulfill his oath to his friend and his friend’s descendants. 

On the other hand, in the series, Finrod simply vowed to find Sauron, who was one of the remnants of Morgoth’s darkness during the First Age. And that was what ultimately led to Galadriel’s personal journey in this epic storyline.

What Happened To Finrod In The Rings Of Power?

Despite how influential Finrod was to Galadriel during the early part of The Rings of Power, it was his goal of killing Sauron that ultimately led to his demise. Knowing that peace would never return to Middle-Earth if Sauron, a sorcerer under the command of Morgoth, was still out there leading the orcs, he went on a quest to defeat this darkness. Nevertheless, Sauron struck first and killed Finrod.

Galadriel believed that it was indeed Sauron that killed her brother because he left on her brother’s body a distinct mark that neither she nor any of the wisest elves were ever able to decipher. In that regard, Galadriel took on her brother’s oath and vowed to be the one to find Sauron and put an end to him. 

finrod body 1

In a sense, it was a personal revenge quest on the part of Galadriel that drove her to search for the dark lord for decades and even centuries, such that even her companions had become weary of their journey. Even the elven High King declared peace on Middle-Earth because Galadriel could never find any remnants of Sauron at all. And it was during this time of complacency that the dark lord was waiting so that he may act behind the shadows.

Of course, there are some clear differences between Finrod’s death in the books compared to his death in The Rings of Power. And this is probably the biggest change that the series implemented in relation to the character, as it is quite different when you look at Finrod’s story in the books.

The entire First Age was a chaotic one that included a lot of different battles between Morgoth and the elves. As Galadriel said in the opening scene of The Rings of Power, the war against Morgoth was supposed to be a short one but ended up stretching throughout the entire First Age. In that regard, there were plenty of different battles that the elves were involved in, as Finrod himself was one of the elves that journeyed from Valinor to Middle-Earth to put a stop to Morgoth’s darkness. 


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However, as mentioned, Beren invoked the oath that Finrod made to Barahir so that they could recover one of the Silmarils from Sauron. The dark lord captured their entire company as only Finrod and Beren were left remaining when a werewolf was about to kill Barahir’s descendant. True to the oath that he swore, Finrod broke free from his bonds and killed the werewolf before dying from his own wounds. As such, he was able to fulfill the oath that he swore to Barahir, even though he did fail in killing Sauron.

Nevertheless, in The Rings of Power, Finrod’s quest was somewhat more altruistic in nature. Rather than establishing friendships with men and dwarves all over Middle-Earth, he vowed to kill Sauron so that he could end the darkness that began with Morgoth in the First Age. However, as mentioned, Sauron struck first and dealt a lethal blow that killed Finrod.

We are not certain whether or not Finrod’s entire backstory and history will be scrapped by The Rings of Power, but we are certain that his death was changed to add fuel to the fire of motivation that Galadriel has. There has to be a reason why she was so obsessed with finding and killing Sauron, as it was more of a personal quest for vengeance for her because the dark lord was the one responsible for her beloved brother’s death.

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