The Avari, sometimes called the East-elves, were those who, after the awakening of the Quendi, were unwilling to answer the summons of the Valar to travel West to Aman. They were drawn mostly from the third clan of Elves (the Nelyar), but there were also a number drawn from the second clan (the Tatyar). The other elves gave them the name Avari, meaning ‘the Refusers’. The Avari remained in the East and over time splintered into separate tribes with their own distinct tongues. They were a rustic, wild folk, and they were the first people encountered by the fledgling race of Men, to whom they taught the rudiments of civilization. The names of six Avarin tribes are known, as well as the fact that there were three disctinct groups of Avarin languages (West-, North-, and East-Avarin), but beyond this the Avari did not come into the tales of Middle-earth, though some of the westernmost of them merged with the Nandor of the Anduin vales to become the Silvan Elves.
This Elf belongs to one of the westernmost Avarin tribes, whose languages were closest to the Eldarin tongues — possibly the Penni tribe, since the word penni was also found in the tongue of the Silvan Elves. It has been speculated that the most western-dwelling of the Avari lived in the land of Dorwinion, so perhaps that is whence hails this elf. Being one of the western Avari, his garb is not entirely dissimilar to that of the Eldar, the West-elves, and recalls, perhaps, the rustic clothing of the Silvan Elves. He wears serviceable but coarsely-stitched linens and leathers in dark grey and black hues, allowing him to move unseen through the dark eastern forests of his homeland. Thus concealed, he is able to descry the movements of his people’s foes — and, if circumstances allow, to eliminate them with a piercing shot from his bow. A simple hood covers his head, and the whole array is decorated with a leaf motif. Like the Avari as a people, he is a fleeting, shadowy image, hard to pin down, and mysterious.
It was time for an outfit fit for an elven scout, and the dark colours in this one made me think of the mysterious Avari — one of the various groups of elves who never saw the Light of the Two Trees of Valinor, thus were numbered among the Moriquendi, the Dark-elves. Little is known about the Avari beyond the names of the six tribes, which are all cognates of the Quenya word Quendi (Kindi, Cuind, Hwenti, Windan, Kinn-lai, and Penni). Nevertheless, the Avari inspire a certain fascination for many people, it seems. I think it’s a testament to the subcreative success of Tolkien’s Secondary World that concepts with only a few snippets written about them can inspire so much curiosity in the reader.
- Head: Ceremonial Shadow-stalker Helm (bartered — skirmish camp cosmetics quartermaster/Helegrod cosmetic clothing – medium), grey
- Shoulders: Footman’s Shoulder Guards (crafted — tailor T6), rust
- Back: Sturdy Elven Quiver (crafted — tailor T2/spring festival Red Gift Box), grey
- Chest: Cloth Vest (looted — world drop/general), black
- Hands: Scout’s Gloves (crafted — tailor T6), grey
- Legs: Beast-master Leggings (bartered — skirmish camp cosmetics quartermaster/Helegrod cosmetic clothing – light), black
- Feet: Footman’s Boots (crafted — tailor T6), grey
Tips: As an alternative to the Shadow-stalker Helm, you could use the Cap of Harmony (quest reward — epic  Volume 2, Book 8, Chapter 3: A Relic in Lumul-nar), which has the same appearance, or you could use the vendor-purchased or world drop cowl that has the same skin but lacks the gold trim. The recipe for the quiver used to drop from Red Flower Gift Boxes rewarded from the spring festival flower-picking quest, but it’s now available as the Quiver of Caras Galadhon (bartered –Talan Fanuidhol barterer; or purchased — LOTRO Store).