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Why Sauron Is An Eye After His First Defeat In Lord Of The Rings

Sauron was the primary antagonist in the Lord of the Rings series but why was the character a disembodied eye throughout the franchise? Sauron had a long and dark history in J.R.R. Tolkien’s vision of Middle-earth. The Dark Lord’s fall and physical manifestation were a focus of the trilogy of films directed by Peter Jackson. He is due to appear in Amazon’s Lord of the Rings prequel, The Rings of Power. The show details the Second Age of Middle-earth and chronicles, among other things, Sauron’s initial rise to power before Isildur cut the One Ring from his hand. Here’s why he is The Eye of Sauron instead of an armored giant by the time of the War of the Ring in the Third Age as seen in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy. Sauron wasn’t always The Eye of Sauron, or even the evil lord of Mordor. Sauron was around long before the First Age. He was said to be a Maia, a spirit that descended to help Eru Ilúvatar (the equivalent of God in the Tolkien mythos) and the Valar (godlike Angelic beings) create the world.

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Related: Lord Of The Rings: What Frodo Saw In The Mirror of Galadriel

During that time, he went by the name Mairon, but he later became focused on world domination. He was then referred to as Sauron, which meant “the abominable”. Sauron then became the Lieutenant of Morgoth (one of the Valar) and served his new master in the conflicts in Middle-earth. After a series of wars and battles, Sauron was sent into hiding for hundreds of years. Sauron reappeared during LotR‘s Second Age, when Amazon’s The Rings of Power is set, and gathered power in Mordor. He began accumulating an army of Orcs and Trolls, while he also manipulated weak-willed men who were driven by wealth. Sauron wanted powerful Elves on his side, so he forged the Rings of Power. He gave the rings to various Elves, Dwarves, and Men as he referred to himself as the “Lord of Gifts.” Along with the Rings of Power, he secretly forged the One Ring, the ring that could rule all the others and dominate Middle-earth. When Sauron was defeated by Prince Isildur of Gondor, his finger was severed, as was the One Ring. He also lost his physical form and from then on manifested as The Eye of Sauron.


Isildur Destroyed Sauron’s Physical Form

Sauron’s forging of the Rings was featured at the beginning of 2001’s The Fellowship of the Ring. His physical form was shown as a figure in black armor that stood nine-foot tall. This description was also used for various flashbacks of Sauron’s previous life throughout the trilogy. After losing the One Ring, Sauron’s physical body was destroyed as his power stemmed from the ring. He was thought to have vanished from Middle-earth, but his essence still existed. During the Third Age, Sauron returned as a giant flaming eye that sat on top of Barad-dûr, Mordor’s stronghold.

The all-seeing Eye still had control of Middle-earth as he oversaw all the goings-on within the realm. He then spawned an army of Orcs and enslaved men to carry out his war to win back the One Ring. The Eye of Sauron, which is what he was commonly referred to, became a symbol of fear and power for those involved in the War of the Ring. When Sauron caught wind of Frodo Baggins and the One Ring’s journey, he set a target on the hobbits from the Shire. Without a physical form, he had to use the Nazgûl to do his bidding, sending the Ringwraiths to the Shire in his stead.

Sauron made an ally in Saruman the White, in an effort to bring his wrath upon Middle-earth. Despite his mission, Sauron still had his sights set on reacquiring the Ring. By Return of the King, Gandalf and Aragorn had one more chance at defeating Sauron. They successfully drew out Sauron’s army to empty out the forces in Mordor. This allowed Frodo and Sam to travel to Mount Doom. After a scuffle with Gollum, Frodo managed to throw the One Ring into the volcano, destroying Sauron’s life force and putting an end to the major mission in Lord of the Rings. Barad-dûr crumbled and the Eye, Sauron’s last remaining form, turn into a dark cloud and blew away.

Related: The Rings Of Power Is Already Setting Up Isildur’s One Ring Betrayal

Rings Of Power Will Show Sauron At The Height Of His Power

Sauron hasn’t appeared yet in Amazon’s The Rings Of Power, but it’s guaranteed he will emerge. The narrative has handled his character well. There was a risk that the prequel would humanize him somehow, making him a Game of Thrones-esque character with grayscale morality. This isn’t what Sauron needs, and fans were delighted that Rings of Power has treated its evil with such reverence that the entire first series so far has been detailing the trepidation about his mere emergence. Even his name sends shivers down the spines of those in Middle-earth who know of him. There are many theories about which of The Rings Of Power’s many mysterious characters could be Sauron. The only certainty so far is that, when he does finally appear, it will be a very different character to the Eye of Sauron from Lord of the Rings. It will be Sauron at the height of his power: the being Gandalf and Elrond feared returning to the world so much in the Third Age.

Next: Lord Of The Rings Is Now More Popular Than Star Wars – Why?

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