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Radagast the Brown

Biographical information

Other names
Aiwendil, Bird Friend, Bird-tamer, The Brown, Tender of Beasts
The Brown Wizard
Date of birth
Before the creation of Arda
Year ascended to the throne
Date of death
Realms ruled
Wizard Staff, Powers of the Maiar

Physical description

Wizards, Maiar of Yavanna
Hair color
Brown-gray (films)
Eye color
Dark-blue (films)

Radagast (Adûnaic; IPA: ['radagast] - "Tender Of Beasts") the Brown, also called Aiwendil (Quenya; IPA: [ai'wendil] - "Bird-Friend") was one of the five Wizards, or Istari. He was a good friend of Gandalf the Grey, whom he aided occasionally. Radagast was mainly concerned with the well-being of the plant and animal worlds, and thus did not participate heavily in the War of the Ring.  


Early LifeEdit

Istari aiwendil by moi keiniku sang
Radagast was originally a Maia of Yavanna the Fruit-Giver named Aiwendil, meaning "bird-friend". He was chosen as one of the Istari who came to Middle-earth in the year TA 1000. Aiwendil, renamed Radagast, meaning "tender of beasts", by the Ñoldor, protects the great forests. He was little concerned with the affairs of Men and Elves but was far more knowledgeable in plants, birds and beasts in the forest.

Third AgeEdit

Radagast and Gandalf 2

Radagast with fellow Wizard, Gandalf

In The Hobbit, Gandalf says that Radagast is his cousin,[1] though this more likely refers to their friendship or the fact that they are both Wizards, and not actual close kinship, except in that they are both Maiar.[2]  

War of the RingEdit

Radagast was unwittingly used by Saruman to lure Gandalf to Orthanc, where Gandalf was captured and held prisoner. However, Radagast also unintentionally helped rescue the grey wizard by alerting the Great Eagles of Gandalf's journey to the orcs birthing dungeons. This was his only known contribution to the War of the Ring.[3]

During the Council of Elrond, Gandalf refers to Radagast as "master of shapes and changes of hue", but the meaning of this is open to question. He at one time dwelt at Rhosgobel, on the western eaves of southern Mirkwood, possibly near the Gladden Fields on the Great River.

When messengers from Elrond tried to approach Radagast for his aid in the fight against Sauron, they found his dwellings at Rhosgobel empty. His fate after the War of the Ring is not known.[4] [5]  


The name Radagast is said to mean "tender of beasts" in Adûnaic.

His original name was Aiwendil, meaning "bird-friend" in Quenya; IPA: [aɪˈwendil]). It is comprised of the Quenya aiwë ([small] "bird") and the ending -ndil ("friend").

Behind the scenesEdit


Radagast the Brown during The Lord of the Rings

It is not known when or if Radagast left Middle-earth. Tolkien writes that he forsook his mission as one of the Wizards by becoming too obsessed with animals and plants, so presumably he failed, and might not be allowed to return with honour. Tolkien also wrote that he did not believe that Radagast's failure was as great as Saruman's and that he may eventually have been allowed (or chose) to return to the Undying Lands. On the other hand, however, the primary mission of Radagast appointed by Yavanna may have actually been to watch over many of the flora and fauna of Middle-earth and to ensure their survival in the likely case if Sauron conquered Middle-earth, and in this, he succeeded.

According to the essay "The Istari" from the Unfinished TalesRadagast means "tender of beasts" in Adûnaic, the language of Númenor. However, in a later note Tolkien said that the name is in the language of the Men of the Vales of Anduin, and that its meaning is not interpretable. The name Radagast may actually be Anglo-Saxon, and could have several interpretations, but, according to The Languages of Middle-earth, this name is derived from a Slavic pagan god. The name Radegast was a name for one of West Slavic lesser gods. He is a god of the Sun, war, fertility and harvest. He is also called Radigost, Radegast, Radhost, Radhošť, Redigast.[6]

Portrayal in adaptationsEdit

The Hobbit film trilogyEdit


Radagast talking to a bird

The character Radagast and virtually all references to him (with the exception of the presence of being Eagles directed by an unseen force) were not used in the film versions of The Lord of the Rings directed by Peter Jackson. The character is also absent from the 1978 animated movie of the same name.

Radagast does appear in Peter Jackson's first Hobbit film, although none of the incidents involving Radagast in the movie were ever mentioned in any of Tolkien's writings; they are original to the movie. In the book, Radagast is mentioned only once in passing, as Gandalf's cousin. In the movie, he is portrayed by actor Sylvester McCoy of Doctor Who fame. In the film, Radagast is portrayed as a strange, eccentric person who can communicate with animals and shows a great knowledge of herbs and medicines, including being able to restore a recently deceased hedgehog to life. He is also shown to possess formidable combat abilities, such as being able to ward off an attack by the Witch-king of Angmar (or his summoned shade) while investigating Dol Guldur. His preferred form of transportation is a sled made of sticks and pulled by "Rhosgobel Rabbits". The sled is fast enough to outrun a pack of Gundabad Wargs, which were ridden by Orcs under command of Yazneg in the film.

Radagast is first mentioned in the film The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey when Bilbo Baggins enquirers of Gandalf whether there are any other wizards within Middle-earth. Gandalf responds that there are five wizards, of whom Radagast is one. Gandalf says that Radagast is a great wizard in his own particular way, enjoying the solitude of standing guard over the Greenwood forest and preferring the company of animals to that of Men.

Radagast is then seen investigating the Greenwood, noticing that much of the vegetation is beginning to decay and much of the animal life is sick or dying. Radagast brings one of them, a hedgehog he calls Sebastian, back to his woodland house at Rhosgobel where he is able to nurse the hedgehog back to health. Radagast comes to the realisation that a type of powerful witchcraft has caused the decay of the Greenwood and its transformation into what would now become known as Mirkwood. After Rhosgobel is swarmed by Giant Spiders, Radagast investigates and identifies the origin of the evil as the supposed abandoned fortress of Dol Guldur.

Radagast makes his way to Dol Guldur aboard a sled pulled by Rhosgobel rabbits. While Radagast is investigating Dol Guldur, he is attacked by the spirit of the Witch-king of Angmar. Radagast is able to ward off his attacks and forces the Witch-King to drop his Morgul-blade and retreat. Radagast takes the Morgul-blade, but before he leaves he sees a dark spirit within the fortress, whom he believes to be the Necromancer.

He immediately goes on the search for Gandalf to inform him of the new found threat within Mirkwood and is able to locate him within the Trollshaws accompanying Thorin and Company. Radagast tells Gandalf of the threat the Necromancer is posing to Middle-Earth from within Dol Guldur and presents the Morgul-Blade as evidence. Shortly afterwards, the company is attacked by a battalion of Warg Riders led by Yazneg. Radagast volunteers to create a diversion with his sled of Rhosgobel rabbits, drawing the Warg Riders away from Thorin and company, who are able to reach the safety of the Hidden Valley of Rivendell. Radagast's rabbit sled's superiority in speed and maneuverability allows him to escape the Warg Riders before they are driven off by elven horsemen led by Elrond.

At the White Council meeting in Rivendell, Gandalf backs Radagast's claim that the Necromancer posed a serious threat to Middle-earth. But the head of the White Council, the white wizard Saruman, remains skeptical and claims there is no evidence to support such a theory despite Radagast's finding of the Morgul-blade. Saruman suggests that excessive consumption of mushrooms has addled Radagast's judgement and reduced his reliability.The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012)

In The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Radagast (who was presumably instructed by Galadriel) meets Gandalf inside the High Fells of Rhudaur and they find the tombs (or cells) of the Nazgûl broken into by 'dark spells'.


Radagast appears in the High Fells to aid Gandalf in investigating the Nazgûl tombs

Radagast became skeptical of Gandalf's beliefs that the Necromancer summoned the Nazgûl to Dol Guldur, believing that no human sorcerer could accomplish this. However, Gandalf reminded him that the Nazgûl only answer to their one true master, Sauron, whom he suspects is the true identity of the Necromancer. Realizing that Sauron plans on attacking the Lonely Mountain, Gandalf attempts to leave to rejoin Thorin and Company, but Radagast insists that they investigate Dol Guldur themselves. Upon arriving at the seemingly abandoned fortress, Gandalf guessed that a spell of concealment had been erected over the place, suspecting that their enemy has not regained his full strength. Gandalf sends Radagast to take a message to Lady Galadriel while Gandalf continues his own investigation of the 'abandoned' fortress.The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013)

In The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, Radagast is seen chanting an incantation, seemingly a telepathic communication to support Gandalf as he attempts to break free from his cage. Later, he arrives at the Battle of Dol Guldur where he takes Gandalf to his sled, by the order of Galadriel. Radagast provides Gandalf a horse to ride to Erebor and his Wizard Staff to replace his old one. Gandalf tells Radagast to summon every bird and beast to join in the battle for the Lonely Mountain. Radagast leads a charge of the Great Eagles at the end of the battle to assist the Dwarves, Men, and Elves. He rides one of the eagles (possibly Gwaihir) along with Beorn.

Personality Edit

Tolkien's writing does not shed much light on Radagast's personality. In the films he has a eccentric personality, but is also selfless and brave, as shown when healing the hedgehog Sebastian, and in holding off an Orc pack so that Thorin & Company could go to Rivendell. He is also highly intelligent, being a Wizard, and has an adept understanding on how nature works, including performing healing spells and at magical blasts.

Despite his somewhat childish ways, Radagast is also shown to be adapt at combat, being able to hold his own against the resurrected Witch King of Angmar. He is also brave, and willing to help Gandalf any way he can, including rescuing him from Dol Guldur and even giving him his staff.

Radagast's fidgety and slightly hyperactive speech pattern is somewhat of a trademark of actor Sylvester McCoy, who has a history of playing eccentric and comedic characters.

Much like in the books, Saruman is dismissive of Radagast, considering him to be, "a foolish fellow," and can be heard saying that he is acting in a manner contrary to how an Istari should be.

Video gamesEdit

Lego Radagast

Radagast as a playable character in Lego: The Lord of the Rings.

  • Radagast also appears in the trading card game connected to Jackson's Lord of the Rings Trilogy.
  • Radagast appears in The Lord of the Rings Online, where he dwells in the city of Ost Guruth. The player aids Radagast through a quest series in the Lone-Lands, ending in a quest that sees Radagast and the player battle the Gaunt-Lord Ivar. Radagast beats Ivar and drives him away from the Lone-Lands. After Ivar is defeated, Radagast relocates to the tower of Barad Dhorn in Agamaur.
  • Radagast appears in The Lord of the Rings: War in the North, where he flees from his home in Rhosgobel during the War of the Ring to one of his hideaways in Mirkwood. There Radagast is captured by the spider Saenathra, at the behest of Agandaûr. Radagast is later freed by Eradan, Farin and Andriel, who kill Saenathra. Radagast then tells the trio of where to locate the dragon, Urgost, further advancing their quest.
  • He also appears in the game LEGO The Lord of the Rings as a playable character and can be purchased near Bree, however he does tend to wander and is not always in a set location. His equipment includes only a staff which is unique to this character.
  • Radagast appears in LEGO The Hobbit: The Video Game as a playable character. Radagast has the ability to heal sick creatures and to destroy blue Lego objects. 


Radagast is exclusive in LEGO to one set: Dol Guldur Battle. The set includes Radagast and his fellow wizard, Gandalf the Grey, and Azog and the Necromancer and two Gundabad Orcs.

Voice Dubbing actorsEdit

Foreign Language Voice dubbing artist
Spanish (Latin America) Eduardo Tejedo
Spanish (Spain) Juan Fernández (AUJ) / Enric Isasi-Isasmendi (DOS)
Portuguese (Brazil) (Television/DVD) Mário Monjardim
German Erich Ludwig
Italian (Italy) Bruno Alessandro
FrenchRadagast in LEGO Hobbit Video game (France) Gabriel Le Doze
Polish Wiesław Komasa
Hungarian Gábor Harsányi
Czech Václav Knop
Slovak Boris Farkaš

Translations around the WorldEdit

Foreign Language Translated name
Amharic ራዳጋስት
Arabic راداعاست
Armenian Րադագաստ
Assyrian ܪܐܕܐܓܐܣܬ
Bengali ড়াদাগাস্ত্
Bulgarian Радагаст
Catalan Ràdagast
Chinese (Hong Kong) 瑞達加斯特
Dari راداگاست
Georgian რადაგასტი
Greek Ραδαγαστ
Gujarati રદગસ્ત્
Hebrew ראדאגאסת ?
Hindi रैदागैस्ट
Japanese ラダガスト
Kazakh Радагаст
Korean 라다가스트
Kurdish راداگاست
Kyrgyz Радагаст
Macedonian Радагаст
Mongolian Радагаст
Nepali ड़दगस्त्
Pashto راداګاست
Persian راداگاست
Russian Радагаст
Sanskrit रदगस्त्
Siamese (Thai) ราดากัสต์
Sinhala රදගස්ත්
Serbian Радагаст (Cyrillic) Radagast (Latinised)
Tajik Радагаст
Tamil றதகஸ்த் ?
Tibetan རདགསྟ​
Tigrinya ራዳጋስት
Ukrainian Радаґаст
Urdu راداگاست
Uyghur راداگاست
Uzbek Радагаст (Cyrillic) Radagast (Latinised)
Yiddish ראַדאַגאַסט


Radagast @
Radagast in the Hobbit film trilogy
Radagast 23
Radagast in the Hobbit film trilogy
Radagast and Gandalf2
Gandalf and Radagast in Mirkwood
Radagast 3
Radagast as portrayed by Sylvester McCoy
Tumblr mdcfpjb13P1qdvlrzo1 500
Radagast's bird nest in his dirty hair, as featured in The Hobbit. This is why we see bird poo staining his face.
Radagast and a bird, as seen in the 9th 'The Hobbit video diary'
Radagast 2
Radagast as portrayed by Sylvester McCoy
Radagast with his Rhosgobel Rabbits
Radagast with his Rabbits
Radagast Trading Card
Radagast War in the North
Radagast as he appears in the War in the North video game.
Radagast's rustabell rabbits
Radagast's Rhosgobel rabbits
1394795 708432359170077 644258337 n
A photo of Radagast
Miniature of Radagast the Brown produced by Games Workshop for the Lord of the Rings Strategy Battle Game.
Miniature of Radagast and Sebastian produced by Games Workshop for The Hobbit Strategy Battle Game.
Miniature of Radagast's Sleigh, produced by Games Workshop for The Hobbit Strategy Battle Game
Miniature of Radagast produced by Games Workshop for The Hobbit: Escape From Goblin Town


  1. The Hobbit, Chapter VII: "Queer Lodgings"
  2. The Annotated Hobbit
  3. The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, Book Two, Chapter I: "Many Meetings"
  4. The Complete Guide to Middle-earth
  5. Unfinished Tales, Part Four: II: "The Istari"
  6. Slavic languages

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