Gilfanon's Tale: The Travail of the Noldoli and the Coming of Mankind is the tenth and last chapter of The Book of Lost Tales Part One, the first volume of Christopher Tolkien's The History of Middle-earth. It contains varying versions of J.R.R. Tolkien's disunified account of a tale told by Gilfanon, a resident of the Cottage of Lost Play, immediately following Vairë's narration of The Hiding of Valinor.

Synopsis Edit

The majority of this chapter is Christopher Tolkien's commentary of the complicated variance of Gilfanon's tale, which essentially concerns the early sundering of the Elves (the 'Qendi'), the discovery by characters and Nuin of a deep valley in which the Fathers of Men are about to awaken, and the deeds of Melkor's son, Fankil, of brewing hatred between Man and Elves. Tû, the "Dark Elf" Nuin, and Fankil do not appear elsewhere in Tolkien's legendarium, nor do human siblings Ermon and Elmir and the Ilkorin Elf Tareg, who are involved with Fankil's deeds.

After a sudden point where Gilfanon's tale of the discovery of the Fathers of Men ends, Christopher Tolkien summarizes two accounts of the Awakening of Men, and two of the "History of the Exiled Gnomes", according to four different outlines of his father, in which Fankil's conflict takes place. These accounts preceded the altered, finalized story found in the chapter "Of Men" in The Silmarillion.

The commentary finishes with a long explanation of which story elements survived or evolved into the key events throughout the Quenta Silmarillion, such as the Oath of Fëanor, Fëanor's death, and the first meeting of Grey-elves and the Noldor in Mithrim.