In The Fellowship of the Rings Galadriel gives each member of the fellowship a gift, many of these turn out to be critically useful in their quest:

  • Frodo's light saves their life in Shelob's lair
  • Sam's rope is used in emyn muil
  • The broaches lead Aragorn to the Hobbits
  • The cloaks hide them more than once

There are two instances of foresight in the films, the first is Elrond who can see Arwen's future (and indeed Arwen herself). The other is Galadriel's mirror.

Are these random gifts which may come in useful or are they specifically given for challenges she knows they will face?

2 Answers 2


Interesting question. But I'd rather say they were just very useful tools, if they hadn't used them the way they did, they surely would have found other uses for them. More than being tailored for their specific futures they were probably chosen more to fit their individual characters, so I'd say she rather sensed they might be especially useful or fitting for the specific recipients.

(But this is all rather speculation because despite having read the corresponding books I'm not completely sure.)

  • 4
    There's probably also an element of Chekhov's Gun theory!
    – Liath
    Commented Jul 18, 2013 at 10:56

In fact, Galadriel gives them useful gifts which either will make them happy or help them on the road:

  • Frodo Baggins: The Light of Eärendil. Frodo is going to Mordor, a realm of darkness. Since Frodo is the ring carrier, he is the one who needs light in this journey.
  • Samwise Gamgee: In the books, Sam receives Earth from Galadriel's Orchard and a Mallorn Seed. Sam is a gardener and he misses his home. Also he tries to make up his mind whether he keep going on this journey or turn back to his home. Galadriel gives this gift which make him happy. In the movie, he receives elven rope.
  • Meriadoc Brandybuck and Peregrin Took: Silver Belt with Gold Flower-Shaped Clasp. In the movie, they receive daggers. Because they want to help Frodo but they are not sure if they can since they do not have neither courage nor experience comparing to the rest of the group.
  • Aragorn: Elven Scabbard and Elessar the Elfstone are received by Aragorn in the books. Scabbard is magical and the sword sheathed with it will never break. Since Aragorn wants to be the king again, this gift is possibly the best since the sword was broken in the time he receives the gift and that gift proves the same will not happen again ever after! Elfstone belongs to Arwen and left for him. But in the movie, Aragorn do not receive any gifts from Galadriel. Arwen gives him the Elfstone, and Elrond gives him the scabbard, but there is no indication that it is magical.
  • Legolas: Bow of the Galadhrim with Arrows. What does an elf archer needs beyond that? Bow is strung with elven hair.
  • Gimli: Three Strands of Galadriel's hair. Gimli wants a single strand but receives three! Gimli wished to encase this gift in imperishable crystal, as an heirloom of his house and a sign of good will between the Dwarves and Elves.
  • Boromir: A solid gold belt crafted in Lórien
  • For all members except Gandalf: Elven Cloaks. They are traveling to Mordor and they need to hide from evil eyes more and more when they get closer and closer.

In the movie, characters received more useful gifts which will give them strength and courage. Some gifts replaced with more useful ones.

So no, she cannot see the future but she knows who needs what in that journey. Since most of them are more abstract in effect.

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