The Second Age
Lady of the Noldor
She is unusually tall and strong. It is said her hair had captured the light of the Two Trees in Valinor, which resulted a very unique and dazzling colour of gold and silver. She is unconscionably beautiful
When a fourth child was born to Finarfin, prince of the Noldor, and Eärwen, princess of the Teleri, her father named her Artanis, which is “noble woman”. She was unusually tall and strong as she grew, and so Eärwen’s name for her was Nerwen, “man-maiden”. It is said among the Eldar that her hair had captured the light of the Two Trees in Valinor, which resulted a very unique and dazzling colour of gold and silver. According to a legend, this is how Fëanor conceived the idea of capturing the light of the trees inside the Silmarils. Despite her mixed blood, she was identified as a princess of the Noldor, as her father was the third son of Finwë, High King of the Noldor. During the Darkening of Valinor, she was very independent and visionary. She swore no oaths but the words of Fëanor concerning Middle-Earth kindled a desire in her heart, as she was eager to see those wide unguarded lands and rule a realm of her own. During the troubles that followed, she took no part in the Kinslaying of Alqualondë. Dismayed by the prophecy of Mandos, her father Finarfin abandoned the march of the Noldor and returned to Valinor. But Galadriel and her brothers crossed the Helcaraxë in far north and arrived to the northern shores of Hither Lands.
In Beleriand, Galadriel and her eldest brother Finrod Felagund came to Doriath as guests of Elu Thingol, the King of Doriath. It was there she met Celeborn, a kinsman of Thingol, who would become her husband and companion in Middle-Earth. When her brother Finrod departed to the Caverns of Narog to establish the stronghold of Nargothrond, Galadriel did not go with him and remained in Doriath with her husband, though she occasionally visited her brother in Nargothrond. During her days in Doriath, Galadriel became friends with Queen Melian the Maia, and they spoke often to one another about Valinor. Melian was eager to learn the causes of the Exile of the Noldor, but Galadriel would tell her nothing of what occurred after the death of the Trees. Eventually, however, as Melian’s guesses became more shrewd and accurate, Galadriel revealed the tale to her, though still leaving out the death of Finwë, the Kinslaying, and the burning of the Ships at Losgar. Melian was able to discern some of what was left unsaid, and still more came as rumors to Thingol’s ears. At last, egged on by the accusing words of Thingol, Angrod told all. Galadriel was not expelled from Doriath because of Thingol’s sympathy to the houses of Finarfin and Fingolfin for the wrongs they had suffered. All the same, she went to Nargothrond to live with Finrod for a time. Presumably, she returned to Doriath to live with her husband. Galadriel did not have any significant role in the general course of events in the War of the Jewels. She and Celeborn survived, or even were not present in the destruction of Nargothrond in F.A. 495 and Doriath in F.A. 503/F.A. 506. It is not unlikely that after the destruction of Doriath they went to the Havens of Sirion along with many survivors of Beleriand (or even with their Telerin kin to the Isle of Balar with Círdan). Thus they even survived the Third Kinslaying, and after that, the War of Wrath.
Given the choice whether to stay in Middle-Earth or not, Galadriel and Celeborn surprisingly decided to remain. Galadriel was still very proud, even arrogant, and refused to accept the pardon of the Valar and therefore exiled herself in Middle-Earth. After the War of Wrath, Galadriel and Celeborn came to Lindon with the other survivors of Beleriand. They ruled over the fiefdom of Harlindon, which was composed mostly of Sindar, under the High King Gil-galad. Eventually the couple moved to a new land called Eregion in far eastwards of Lindon. It was ruled by Celebrimbor, a grandson of Fëanor and distant cousin of Galadriel.