There’s no denying that the sheer scale of Amazon’s epic series The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power is a lot to take in. Set in various locations in the midst of the Second Age of Middle-earth, the show shows just how evil it is beginning to rise in the far reaches of the realm. As a result of the breadth of the story, viewers may have missed some key details of author JRR Tolkien’s mythology scattered throughout the series.
In particular, the spectacular depiction of Númenor features several nods to key figures in the history of Middle-earth. Speaking on The Nerd of The Rings YouTube channel (opens in a new tab)director Wayne Yip broke down what you need to know about the statues that dominate its harbor.
As Galadriel and Elendil sail into port, various figures are carved into the stones around Númenor. Among them is Ulmo, who in Tolkien’s works was the King of the Sea and one of the Aratar, a group also known as the Eight and the Saints of Arda. “He was the god who gifted the islands to them, so we knew he was going to be front and center welcoming visitors to the island,” Yip explained of his inclusion.
The most commanding of the statues, however, is that of Eärendil, who towers over the harbor with his wife Elwing, who had been transformed into a bird, perched on his shoulder. Eärendil was the great half-elven sailor who carried the morning star across the sky, as well as being the father of Elrond and Elros. Yip explained that they included a special nod to the legend of him in the statue that didn’t make it into the final episode.
“I don’t know if you ever saw him specifically,” he continued. “But we had it at night, from the pier looking up, it looks like it’s pointing at its star, so everything lines up. It’s one of those things where we feel because there are all these different bridges, they built the statue in a way you could enjoy different aspects depending on what bridge you were on at the time of day.
Yip admitted that he wished he could devote an entire episode to breaking down the references in Númenor. But while they haven’t been explored directly on the series so far, the director said they have plenty of time left with five seasons planned for The Rings of Power.
To find out more about the series, we’ve broken down all the main characters, where they are in the Lord of the Rings timeline, and everything we know so far about Sauron’s possible appearance. Be sure to also check out our Rings of Power release schedule so you don’t miss a moment.