Hail and Well Met Friends!
This week we continue our series of the great White Wizard and one of the greatest Villains of Middle-earth. Everyone enjoy…
The five wizards arrived at the Grey Havens around the year 1000. Only the keeper of the havens, Círdan the Shipwright, knew Saruman’s identity and origin. Saruman would later discover that Círdan had given Narya, the Red Ring, to Gandalf upon their first landing in Middle-earth. Even though Saruman was immediately considered the head of the order while Gandalf was not, Círdan had divined Gandalf as the wisest and greatest of the wizards. Saruman’s jealousy of Gandalf grew from these events, perhaps because he feared that he would eventually supplant him as chief of wizards.
Saruman and the two Blue Wizards went into the east of Middle-earth. After one and a half millennia, he returned to the west, just as Sauron’s power was growing again in Dol Guldur.
When the White Council was formed in the Third Age it was to counter Sauron and Saruman was appointed its leader, though Galadriel wanted Gandalf in this position. Saruman refused to step down due to his pride, while Gandalf had declined. At this point Saruman had begun to sense the resurgence of Sauron and to envy and desire his power, and especially the One Ring. This was also the same year that the One Ring was taken by Smeagol who later became Gollum, and disappeared with the ring into the Misty Mountains for hundreds of years. It was during the meetings of the Council that Saruman first noted Gandalf’s interest in Hobbits and The Shire, and believing that all his deeds related to some as yet undisclosed plan of his for self-enhancement, Saruman himself began keeping a greater watch on Gandalf and sent spies to The Shire. At first, he himself visited it secretly but stopped when he realized that its inhabitants had noticed him. Amongst the purposes of his visits was to procure some of the halflings’ Pipe-weed, since in secret imitation of Gandalf he had begun to smoke.
In the year 2759 of the Third Age, Saruman settled in Isengard with the permission of the Steward of Gondor, Beren, although he settled only as Warden of the Tower and representative of the Steward (the stronghold had by then been abandoned by Gondor). There he became important in the informal alliance defending the west of Middle-earth. In the tower of Isengard, Orthanc, he also found one of the remaining Palantiri.
By 2850, Gandalf had entered Dol Guldur and confirmed that the evil presence lurking was indeed Sauron. By Saruman’s advice, the White Council decided against attacking Dol Guldur. Gandalf would later remark that it was at this council meeting that he first began to suspect that Saruman desired to possess the One Ring. Saruman’s real intention was to permit Sauron to build up his strength, so that the One Ring would reveal itself. He later found that Sauron had more knowledge of the possible location of the One Ring than he expected, and by 2941, he finally agreed to attack Dol Guldur.
Ten years after Sauron abandoned Dol Guldur he returned to Mordor and declared himself openly. He established contact with Saruman through the Palantir captured from Minas Ithil, which by this time was now known as Minas Morgul. In this year, Saruman also took Isengard for his own and began to fortify it.
When Gandalf presented Saruman with the discovery and the location of the One Ring, Saruman revealed his desire for it and his secret alliance with Sauron. He had also shed the title of Saruman the White, Saruman no longer had any loyalty to the White Council, or the Ring-bearer. He tried unsuccessfully to gain Gandalf’s allegiance. When Gandalf refused to join with him, Saruman held him captive in Isengard but Gandalf later escaped with help from Gwaihir the Windlord, and made Saruman’s treachery known to the rest of the White Council.
Stay tuned for next weeks episode of our wizard lore.
Until next time, I’m your host Iogro Merrybelly and I bid you a fine farewell!