Gléowine, Minstrel of Rohan


Gléowine (whose name means “music-friend”) was the minstrel of Théoden Thengel’s son, King of the Riddermark. Little is known of him save that he made for his lord a song which he sang at Théoden’s funeral along with the Riders of the King’s House. The song stirred the hearts even of those who did not speak the tongue of the Riddermark and brought a light to their eyes as they heard in their minds the timeless echoes of the battle upon the Fields of Celebrant long ago.

Of dreccunga, of dimnesse tó dæges úpgange
hé singende rád in sunnan, sweord bregdende.
Hé hyht eft onaelede and in hyhte geendode;
ofer endunga, ofer ege, ofer orlæge úp áhafen
of lyre, of lífe, tó langum wuldre.

Out of doubt, out of dark, to the day’s rising
he rode singing in the sun, sword unsheathing.
Hope he rekindled, and in hope ended;
over death, over dread, over doom lifted
out of loss, out of life, unto long glory.

— “Burial Song of Théoden”, The Lord of the Rings 6:VI

Here Gléowine is clad in a simple tunic of quilted wool, though it is cinched with a girdle of finely-chased and polished bronze. This girdle, as well as his heavy bronze collar befit and proclaim his status as the royal minstrel. His elegant cloak features a scalloped hem and bears the insignia of two white horses. The white horse motif is repeated in tooled leather on his left vambrace. He carries a well-made harp, but his main instrument is his voice. With it, he can stir the hearts of listeners, causing them to hear the very sounds of glorious battles long past. Those listening at Théoden’s funeral were transported by the beauty and emotion of Gléowine’s song, but Meriadoc the king’s esquire wept. And afterwards, Gléowine made songs never again.

I wanted to try to make an outfit built around one of the cloaks that come with the Legendary package of the Riders of Rohan pre-order. It’s an impressive cloak, and one of the things I really like about it is its great length. I think it’s the longest cloak we’ve seen in-game so far. It almost brushes the ground when worn. Nice as the cloak looks, I found it challenging to work with but eventually I settled on this outfit and I’m pretty pleased with it. The cloak certainly seems rich enough to be worn by a royal minstrel!

  • Head: Cowl (purchased — Thorin’s Hall light armour vendor; or looted — world drop/general), Ranger green
  • Shoulders: Radiant Westernesse Shoulder Guards (crafted — tailor T5; or looted — world drop/general), Ranger green
  • Back: Mantle of Hwatness (pre-order — Riders of Rohan), default
  • Chest: Dunlending Skirmish Armour (crafted — tailor T7/Men of Dunland reputation), washed
  • Hands: Gloves of the Eorlingas (pre-order — Rise of Isengard), default
  • Feet: Boots of the Helmingas (pre-order — Rise of Isengard), default

Tips: If you don’t have access to the Rise of Isengard pre-order pieces, a good alternative for boots and gloves might be the Dunland War Boots and Dunland War Gloves (both crafted — metalsmith T7/Men of Dunland reputation). I think they might look nice in olive or Ranger green, but this would make the outfit into a somewhat more heavily-armoured look.

Note: The Old English translation of “The Burial Song of Théoden” is by David Salo.

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8 Responses to Gléowine, Minstrel of Rohan

  1. Ivy says:

    I simply love this one; concept, story, outfit. Thank you. 🙂
    –Ivy

  2. Elenluin says:

    I had almost forgotten of this song, time to reread the triology. Your screenshots capture the mood of the song and the outfit looks great.
    I searched for someone singing it in Old English but didn’t find it, but the English version by the Tolkien Ensemble was there.

    • I love the Tolkien Ensemble so much. 🙂

      The translation was for the New Line film, you can hear a few words of it sung in “The Passing of Théoden” on the Return of the King — Complete Recordings album.

  3. Iaksones says:

    I dig it! Thats one Hawt cloak, bahaha.

    But for real, I think you captured what a Rohirric Minstrel would look like well.

  4. Laire says:

    Quick comment, one year later (slight spoiler for vol 3 books 9 and 10)

    I find it a lot of fun to compare Turbine’s version of Gleowine and your version. Such a minor character especially is fun to see, most dont catch such details.

    • Hi Laire, welcome to the blog! It’s great to hear from you as I’ve enjoyed many of your great threads and posts on the LOTRO forums.

      I was definitely intrigued to see what Turbine would do with Gléowine too. Interesting that they decided to make him an old man. For some reason I hadn’t thought of doing that, but I like it. Fun fact: the minor character I’m most looking forward to seeing: Ioreth! 😛

      Thanks so much for your comment, Laire! 🙂

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