Gandalf was a potent wizard, but according to a passage from The Lord of the Rings, he was also among the most influential figures in Middle-earth.
The five wizards of Middle-earth were among the most formidable creatures to roam the planet. Gandalf was the only one to combat Sauron during The Lord of the Rings, although they battled to hold back his darkness. The grey wizard was still unquestionably one of the most valuable members of the Fellowship, and his return as Gandalf the White further increased his worth. Although it is well known that Gandalf gained strength after his return, one passage from J. R. R. Tolkien’s book raises the possibility that he may be the most powerful creature in all Middle-earth.
Gimli, Aragorn, and Legolas think Gandalf the White is Saruman now that he has returned. They all attack at once while readying their weapons, realizing they have little chance against a magician. After having all of their attacks magically dismissed, the three eventually understand who the figure is. Gandalf asserts: “My beloved Gimli, get up! You are not to blame, and I am not being harmed. Indeed, none of you have anything that could harm me, my pals.”
The argument that none of their weapons could harm him has gained traction among fans. It symbolizes not only Gandalf’s resistance to blades but also his resistance to Andril, one of Middle-most earth’s potent weapons. While Aragon doesn’t meet Andril until The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King in Peter Jackson’s trilogy, things were very different in the books. The flame of the West sword, which Aragorn was using, was the same one that had slain Sauron thousands of years earlier. Aragorn kept it with him the entire trip, while Gandalf threw it aside carelessly.
The real essence of a wizard is still among the most challenging ideas in Tolkien’s mythology, and both sides have solid arguments. There are two ways to see the great force that is on display. Gandalf either meant that he could block swords with his spells or that no blade could hurt him.
It states, “As Gandalf deflects their weapons, “Gimli’s axe flew from his grasp and fell, clanging to the ground as he raised his staff. Aragorn’s sword, immobile and stiff in his hand, suddenly burst into flame. With a loud yell, Legolas launched an arrow into the air, where it disappeared in a burst of flame.” The wizard casts some magic before they can even attack because the weapons do not deflect off of Gandalf. So it’s plausible that a sword could still cut his skin if someone sneaked up on him.
Gandalf’s recovery from his battle with the Balrog proves that his body was mortal. His worn-out body was brought to Lothlórian for treatment, where Galadriel had to tend to him until he recovered. “Galadriel’s power is not divine, and his cure in Lórien is supposed to be little more than physical healing and rejuvenation,” Tolkien says in one of his many letters.
The same letter from Tolkien does, however, allude to the vastness of Gandalf’s power. He mentions that none of the five wizards dispatched to Middle-earth to kill Sauron were successful. But thanks to Gandalf’s selfless act, he had earned the right to stand before Ilvatar, the creator god, for judgment. Tolkien claims: “So Gandalf gave himself up, was accepted, improved, and brought back… Of course, he still has the same personality and quirks, but he has much more insight and strength.”
It is reasonable to assume that Gandalf was given blade immunity given that Ilvatar personally handed back an improved version of him. It’s even been said that Gandalf deliberately restrains his true power since the gods prefer him to serve as a mentor rather than a totalitarian ruler. And when he saves Faramir, as he holds back the forces of Orc and Nazgûl, we get a small glimpse of tremendous might.
Overall, the most likely explanation is that while Gandalf does possess a mortal body susceptible to attack from weapons, his magical abilities are so potent that no gun can even approach him. That undoubtedly supports his claims, and while it wouldn’t necessarily make him the most influential person in Middle-earth, it does put him on par with figures like Tom Bombadil and Sauron.
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