If you ask someone why they love The Lord of the Rings, you'll be met with a slew of different answers. One popular one is that the world that Tolkien created is so vast and full of rich history that you can get lost in it and never come out.
Take the character Aragorn, for example. People who saw the trilogy of films will know exactly who he is; a ranger from the north who came down to the village of Bree and journeyed with the Hobbits to help form the Fellowship of the Ring and eventually become King of Gondor (and that's putting it lightly).
However, this character's story doesn't begin and end with The Lord of the Rings. As a matter of fact, Tolkien worked tirelessly to create more backstory for Aragorn and other characters as he created his world. Because of this, people who only watched the movies will only know a fraction of who Aragorn is.
For those of you that are interested to know more about Aragorn or just don't want to read the books, then push on for 25 awesome facts you didn't know about Aragorn, King Elessar of the region of Gondor.
25 He Has More Of A History With Gollum
Aragorn was extremely busy leading up to the events of The Lord of the Rings. Once Gandalf the Grey was suspicious that Bilbo had held the Ring of Power, he quickly went off to do more research. Along the way, he contacted Aragorn and told him of what was going on. He carefully instructed him that the creature Gollum knew more and requested that he track him.
Aragorn worked tirelessly to try and find the demented Smeagol and searched all across Middle-Earth. He eventually came on his prey and learned more about the Ring. After that, he went to the village of Bree, which is where his involvement in the War of the Ring began. Makes more sense how he'd know Gollum was tracking them.
24 He Had A Non-Traditional Upbringing
When we see Aragorn in The Fellowship of the Ring, he's already built some rapport with the Elves. After all, he is in love with Arwen Undomiel and he can speak fluent Elvish. The reason he has such a vast connection with them is the fact that he was raised in Rivendell from the age of two.
Because of this, he learned many skills from the Elves on top of the Dunedain Rangers, which made him one of the best fighters in all of Middle-Earth. His primary caretaker was Lord Elrond, the man who would eventually become his father-in-law. This backdrop provided more depth, especially in the books, when Aragorn and Elrond were butting heads over Arwen.
23 His Hatred Of Orcs Is Personal
The orcs have always been the dark forces in Middle-Earth that seek to destroy it and further the kingdom of the Dark Lord, Sauron. They've since razed villages to the ground, sacked massive cities, and killed countless people. Aragorn despises them by the time he enters the picture, but it's not just because they're evil beings. No, they did something to him that would shape the rest of his life.
Aragorn's father, Arathorn, was a powerful Dunedain Ranger. Their group would often fight orcs, but one day, the creatures got the drop on them, and it resulted in Arathorn's death. This happened when Aragorn was two. Not wanting anyone to know of his heritage, Aragorn's mother took him to be raised in Rivendell, where she passed away not long after.
22 He's Always Been A Fearless Leader
Despite being raised in Rivendell, it wasn't long before Aragorn decided to move forward with his life and leave the care of the Elves. Knowing his heritage with the Dunedain, he found the other rangers and began working with them. His skill and knowledge preceded him, and he ended up becoming their fearless leader.
Aragorn and the other Dunedain fought the armies of Mordor tirelessly, tracking and hunting down parties of Orcs in the Northern realms. However, he wouldn't stay with this group forever and would eventually travel on his own, where he earned the nickname of Strider. Tolkien actually thought a lot about what to nickname Aragorn, and almost settled on the name Trotter due to the noise his boots would make while making contact with the ground.
21 He's Royal In More Ways Than You Think
We all know Aragorn's arc in The Lord of the Rings. He is the last descendant of the line of Isildur. He doesn't want to be the King of Gondor but eventually rises up to the task and takes the throne of Minas Tirith. Yet, he wasn't just the crowned King of Gondor, as he was also directly related to another realm: Arnor.
Arnor was a kingdom in western Middle-Earth which was north of the Shire. Arnor had almost no part in the War of the Ring because they weren't as massive as they used to be. In the past, Arnor was a land that was purged by the Witch King of Angmar and his dark forces. Just to give you an idea, the fortress of Weathertop was once a proud monument of the kingdom of Arnor.
20 Wanted No Part In The Hobbit Films
This is more a fact of Viggo Mortensen (the actor of Aragorn) rather than the Ranger himself. One big criticism of The Hobbit films was that there were too many ties to The Lord of the Rings that took away from the overall impact that the story could've had. After all, Legolas wasn't even in The Hobbit but was featured in such a prominent role in the movies.
However, the creators didn't want to stop with just the Prince of Mirkwood. As a matter of fact, they contacted Viggo Mortensen and asked if he would reprise his role as Aragorn in the movies. He responded with "you do know that Aragorn wasn't in The Hobbit, don't you?" Thankfully, this was the outcome, as it would've added a huge complication in the timeline if Aragorn was in those movies.
19 That Knife Deflect Was Real
One of the most intense battles in The Fellowship of the Ring was the duel between Aragorn and the Uruk-Hai captain, Lurtz. As the two fought each other, they were evenly matched, trading blows and punches to try and knock the other down.
During the fight, Aragorn takes his knife and stabs Lurtz with it. Instead of really hurting him, the Uruk-Hai simply removes it and tosses it at Aragorn, to which he deflects it with his sword. This was a real effect. The script wanted Lurtz to toss it at Aragorn and miss slightly, but the actor had a hard time seeing through the makeup and nearly struck Viggo in the head. Thankfully, he reacted and actually deflected the knife with his sword, giving the entire scene a bit more realism.
18 Presented The Ring Of Barahir By His Father-In-Law
One minor scene in The Two Towers takes place in Isengard. Grima Wormtongue is describing to Saruman the warriors that came into Edoras and freed King Theoden. When he describes Aragorn, he faithfully depicts the ring that was on the Ranger's finger, which displayed two snakes: one devouring and one crowned with flowers.
This was the Ring of Barahir and was only worn by those who were the rightful heirs to the throne of Gondor. It's implied in the movie that Gandalf gave it to Aragorn, but in the books, it is directly stated that Lord Elrond gave it to him (along with the shards of Narsil). This connection to the Elves would later serve Aragorn well as he learned to build alliances with people of all races and kingdoms.
17 He's Been A Close Friend Of Gandalf For A While
Gandalf the Grey has been around for thousands of years. He has seen all manners of war and all kinds of ancient evils. He knows just about everyone in Middle-Earth, and they all recognize him. Most of the Fellowship knew him before the film even began, but the one who knew him the best was Aragorn.
While Aragorn was working with the Dunedain Rangers, he met the traveling wizard himself. The two quickly became good friends, and on Gandalf's suggestion, the Rangers guarded the land known as the Shire. Later on, it was Gandalf who helped Aragorn track down Gollum. Obviously, they would meet up once again in the War of the Ring, where they were both members of the Fellowship.
16 Fought Side By Side With Denethor's Father
Aragorn's experience is legendary. Not only was he trained by Elves and the leader of the Dunedain Rangers, but his services would later take him to both the lands of Rohan and Gondor. He talks in the movies about riding to battle with Theoden's father, King Thengel, but he fails to mention about how he once fought side by side with Steward Denethor's father, Ecthelion.
His time in Gondor was simply to help serve the Steward of the throne rather than to take his rightful place. He aided the Gondorians in their efforts against Sauron's forces, and their primary goal was to push back the orcs into Mordor so that the free people could still remain safe. These adventures gave him much of the knowledge and skill that would later resurface when he fought in the War of the Ring.
15 A Man Of Many Names
Many people in The Lord of the Rings go by multiple names. For example, Gandalf is called Mithrandir, Gandalf Greyhame, and Gandalf Stormcrow in the movies alone. It makes sense, then, that a man who traveled as much as Aragorn would go by many names.
However, titles like Strider and Longshanks aren't the only names he has. Aragorn actually has different names because of his heritage and time in Rivendell. His mother renamed him Estel to hide his identity and he was later known as Elessar when he became the King of Gondor. Regardless of which name he was known by, it's clear that he was recognized across the land and the armies of Mordor were intent on making sure that he didn't live to see another day.
14 He's Been A Married Man A Long Time
One big aspect of Aragorn's character was his relationship with Arwen. In The Lord of the Rings, he is seen getting close to her as the two of them express their love while Elrond looks on disapprovingly. She is initially going to go to the Undying Lands before she decides that she would rather be with him and die than live forever without his love. The two then reunite and rule Gondor lovingly. Spoiler alert.
However, the kicker here is that Arwen and Aragorn never technically got married at the end of The Return of the King. As a matter of fact, they were already married before The Fellowship of the Ring even took place. While Aragorn was living in Rivendell, he and Arwen fell in love. She actually pledged herself to marry Aragorn. The only reason they didn't have an official ceremony is that Elrond refused to allow it. He came around after a few decades.
13 Renamed By A Member Of The Legendary White Council
The White Council is an organization of the most powerful people of Middle-Earth. They are tasked with maintaining balance and not letting Sauron conquer the world. By the time of the War of the Ring, they consist of Radagast the Brown, Saruman the White, Gandalf the Grey, Elrond, Galadriel, Cirdan, and Glorfindel (if you haven't read the books, you won't know who those last two are).
This group had a powerful hand in the preservation of Middle-Earth, and were there during Aragorn's coronation to become the King of Gondor. Galadriel, arguably one of the strongest Elves to have ever lived, showed up to rename Aragorn to King Elessar: a name that would go down in Middle-Earth history as one of the greatest kings to ever live.
12 Restored Gondor For 120 Years As King
After Aragorn became the King of Gondor, his story didn't end there. Despite already being 87 by the time of the War of the Ring, he continued his life for another 120 years as the King. He worked tirelessly to restore order to Gondor and rebuild its armies to protect themselves against any more sinister forces if they were to come again.
In that time, Aragorn and Arwen had a son named Eldarion. He was taught everything he knew from his father and faithfully took up the throne after he passed. During Aragorn's reign as the King, Middle-Earth moved into a new Fourth Age where peace and prosperity ruled over all rather than fear, darkness, and corruption.
11 Came Out Of The Greatest Battle Unscathed
Aragorn's time with the Elves, Dunedain, Rohirrim, and Gondorians served him well, to the point where he became the most skilled man in Middle-Earth during the War of the Ring. He fought in many battles, such as the battle of Helm's Deep and the ambush at the Westfold. The greatest battle he took part in during that time was the battle of Minas Tirith and the Pelennor Fields (they go hand in hand).
If it weren't for Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli returning with the Army of the Dead, the White City surely would've fallen at the hands of Mordor. Yet, the future King of Gondor rushed into the fray of Mordor's armies and took out many orcs. He was so skilled during this fight that when it was all over, he had not a scratch on his body.
10 Mentally As Strong As Sauron
During the War of the Ring, Sauron's physical form was weakened, so he hid in the fortress of Barad-Dur. However, he still managed to stretch his arm across Middle-Earth by tempting people through objects known as Palantirs. He was able to poison Saruman's mind as well as cause Denethor to go completely insane.
When Aragorn was ready to march to the Black Gate to give Frodo time to get the Ring to Mount Doom, he decided to speak directly to Sauron through one of these Palantirs. Not only did he manage to grab the Dark Lord's attention, but he was never poisoned or tempted either. To give you a bit of context, Gandalf refused to touch a Palantir because he was afraid of what it might do to him. Aragorn held it and spoke directly to Sauron.
9 The Meaning Of His Name
Whether you refer to him as Strider or Elessar, Aragorn is the name of the Dunedain Ranger who would end up becoming the King of Gondor. However, Tolkien was never one to come up with names without a reason, and with the various languages he crafted, was able to give Aragorn's name a bit of meaning.
Anyone who knows Elvish knows that Aragorn's name means "revered king." This is especially poignant when you consider that both his parents knew of his heritage as the heir of Gondor and named him appropriately. It's a good thing that Aragorn didn't become a villain, because that name wouldn't have been so appropriate had that been the case. Luckily, Aragorn rose to the occasion and earned his namesake.
8 Almost Became The Powerful Lord Of The Ring
When Tolkien was creating The Lord of the Rings, he had to establish who that character was. It wasn't long before he settled on it being Sauron, as this Dark Lord was the one who created the One Ring to Rule Them All. However, there was an idea for some parallelism to be made between the Lord of the Rings and King Aragorn.
It was thought that Galadriel would end up giving her Ring (she has a ring of power) to Aragorn and name him the Lord of the Ring. It would've provided a nice contrast between the title, but at the same time, it might've been a little cheesy. Either way, we're glad that it didn't become a big thing. The story as we know it now is just fine the way that it is.
7 Heavily Inspired By King Arthur
While the comparisons were never made by Tolkien himself, it's become abundantly clear that Aragorn was heavily inspired by the Scottish King Arthur. Richard J. Finn pointed many of these similarities out in his paper titled "Arthur and Aragorn- Arthurian Influence in LOTR at the Forty-First International Congress on Medieval Studies."
It's there that he states that both Arthur and Aragorn were descendants of a line of royalty and have to become kings again. He further says that kings in Arthur's time lived in a place known as Dun Eideann, which bears a remarkable resemblance to the Dunedain that Aragorn was the leader of. The resemblances are striking, which all but confirms Tolkien's inspiration from old Arthurian tales. After all, The Hobbit featured a terrifying dragon.
6 Used A Strange Object In The Books
When the battle of Minas Tirith was about to take place, Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli were riding with the Rohirrim to meet the armies of Mordor head on. However, they knew that their forces wouldn't be enough, so Aragorn took matters into his own hand. He heard rumors of a dead army hiding deep in the mountains of Dunharrow and sought them out. After gaining them on his side, he can summon them at will to help fight.
In the movies, they are just seen fighting with him. In the books, however, he is given a special Black Stone that he can use to call them out. It was likely not present in the films because it didn't add anything to the Army of the Dead. They could just as easily be included in the story without the Black Stone and nothing would've changed.
5 Incorrectly Has A Beard In The Movies
Arguably one of Aragorn's defining traits in the movies was his appearance. The gruff, traveling garb of this ranger made him stand out from the rest of the men in The Lord of the Rings. While this appearance was fairly iconic in the trilogy, it wasn't the same as what Tolkien described in the books.
The biggest change that was made for the films was that he was given facial hair. In the books, his upbringing from the Elves of Rivendell prevented him from having any facial hair. As you may know, the Elves get rid of any facial hair, and thus, Aragorn was required to do so as well; something that he continued doing throughout his life. Yet, in the movies, this wasn't the case, as they wanted him to be visually distinguished from the Elves.
4 Starred In His Own Fan Film
Because of Aragorn's involvement in Middle-Earth, he is a great canvas to tell more stories. His time as a soldier for both Gondor and Rohan would make for great movies alone, but some fans of the series decided to make a story based on his time tracking Gollum during the early days of The Lord of the Rings.
Many people have praised the film for remaining true to the source material as well as portraying Aragorn as the tracker we all know him to be. It also doesn't try to do too much in terms of relating to the film trilogy, though perhaps that's because of its fairly normal premise. If you're into fan films, then we highly suggest you check this one out.
3 Portrayed By A Master Swordsman
After a few actors were shuffled around, the role of Aragorn eventually went to Viggo Mortensen. This man was perfect for the character for many reasons, but the big one is how gifted he was in the art of the sword. That's not to say that Viggo knew how to use a sword before the movies began, because he didn't. Instead, he and many of the actors had to take lessons, and he picked up the art very quickly. The trainer himself stated that Viggo was one of the best pupils he ever had.
This translated extremely well on the big screen, where Aragorn was shown battling with many different villains, each time showcasing just how good he was with the sword. It was a fitting actor for a fitting role.
2 Starred In His Own Video Game
Aragorn's many adventures made him popular enough to not only get his own fan film, but his own video game too. The Lord of the Rings: Aragorn's Quest came out back in 2010 and was a re-telling of The Lord of the Rings from Samwise to his young children.
Unfortunately, this caused the game to be poorly received, as it never led to any special moments. Playing a game through the film trilogy once more is something that wasn't enticing to many consumers. Furthermore, a big aspect of the game involves Sam's son preparing a party for Aragorn as he comes to the Shire. In any Lord of the Rings game, the number one thing we all want to do is plan parties. 10/10 would play again.
1 Strongest Character In The Battle For Middle-Earth
If Aragorn's Quest seemed a bit too childish to you, then look no further for a good LoTR game in The Battle for Middle-Earth series. Not only does it accurately depict the film trilogy, it offers a real-time strategy game set in Tolkien's world. And it's an overall good game (not to mention how great some of the mods are).
One character who is great in that series is Aragorn. Being a hero, it takes a lot of hits before he falls, and he deals a lot of damage to any incoming attackers. When you get him to level 10, it unlocks the ability to summon the Army of the Dead. This is easily one of the strongest abilities in the game, as the soldiers cannot be damaged. Instead, they rush through the battlefield and kill anything they target. They move fast, hit hard, and cannot be stopped until the timer runs out.