What’s In Durin’s Box In Episode Two Of “The Rings of Power?”

In the climactic scene of episode 2 of “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power,” what is the enigmatic glow coming from Durin III’s gold chest? Celebrimbor, a renowned elven blacksmith, shows Robert Aramayo’s Elrond the blueprints for a great forge in “The Rings of Power” episode 2, although both elves are aware that such a task cannot be completed in the allotted time. If only Elrond had a close friend with tens of thousands of fans and mastery of architecture… Twenty years have passed since their last encounter, so when Elrond visits Durin IV again, his dwarf friend takes offense at the long gap in time. Over supper, their disagreements are (finally) resolved, and Durin IV presents his father with Elrond’s suggestion to build a forge.

In “The Rings of Power” episode 2, this is where things start to become crazy. Asking his son if Elrond displayed any odd behavior, Durin III. Khazad-king dûm’s is not persuaded by Durin IV’s denial and maintains that the appearance of the elf is too significant a “coincidence” to be disregarded. The Durins then show the dwarves a chest, the contents of which, though purposefully hidden from the viewer, flash silver in their faces. Whatever is inside, Durin III didn’t want Elrond to be aware that the dwarves had this box.

The chest most certainly contains mithril, assuming Durin IV hasn’t taken Marcellus Wallace’s suitcase from Pulp Fiction. “The Rings of Power” trailer film shows Owain Arthur’s Durin IV holding a silvery object that he claims could mark the “start of a new era.” It was commonly believed that this ore was mithril, and Durin III’s chest most certainly holds some of the priceless metal. Khazad-dûm is the only known supply of mithril in Middle-earth and the true source of Moria’s brilliance, thus it doesn’t only match the silver light flawlessly. Khazad-dûm is almost entirely dry by “The Lord of the Rings,” so it stands to reason that dwarves started gathering mithril during the Second Age period of “The Rings of Power.” Any dwarf would be reluctant to tell those bothersome Elves about such an exciting discovery for fear they would want it for themselves, which explains Durin III’s mistrust of Elrond.

Are There Silmarils Among The Dwarves In “The Rings Of Power”?

Another (far less likely) possibility is that the Silmaril found in Durin III’s box in “The Rings of Power” episode 2 is real. The three Silmarils—one in the sky, one in the sea, and one beneath the earth—were created by Fanor many millennia before “The Rings of Power.” Maybe while working in the mines, the Khazad-dûm dwarves discovered the Silmaril buried beneath the soil. This would account for the object’s strong light, the king’s keeping of it in a particular box, and Celebrimbor and Elrond’s extensive use of Silmaril history explanation earlier in the episode. In the past, there was a conflict between the Elves and the Dwarves over a Silmaril, and that conflict left a bitter legacy. If the Durins had actually removed a Silmaril from Moria, they would undoubtedly wish to keep that information hidden from any elves. Before you could say “Mellon,” Fanor’s descendants would be pounding on Moria’s door if word got out.

But hold off on pulling out your copy of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion just yet—mithril is still much more likely to happen. The mythology would be drastically altered if dwarves discovered the Silmaril in Second Age Khazad-dûm, and the entire geography of Middle-earth would devolve into chaos. A Silmaril would also be expected to glow much brighter than the object inside Durin III’s box. A Silmaril would more closely resemble a car headlight, illuminating the dwarves’ corneas with intense light; the unseen gem of “The Rings of Power” gently glows onto the father and son’s faces like a phone screen.

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