Fingon Rescues MaedhrosFingon Rescues Maedhros - At Dagor-nuin-Giliath (Battle Under the Stars) where Fëanor was slain, his son, Maedhros, was also taken captive.

 

"Wherefore each embassy came with greater force than was agreed; but Morgoth sent the more, and there were Balrogs.  Maedhros was ambushed, and all his company were slain; but he himself was taken alive by the command of Morgoth, and brought to Angband." ~The Silmarillion, chap. 13 (Of the Return of the Noldor)

 

Morgoth's goal was to get the Noldor to withdraw their attack, but they refused.  So he displayed his prisoner in a most cruel fashion.

 

"Therefore Morgoth took Maedhros and hung him from the face of a precipice upon Thangorodrim, and he was caught to the rock by the wrist of his right hand in a band of steel." ~The Silmarillion, chap. 13 (Of the Return of the Noldor)

 

But there was one who endeavored to rescue Maedhros from his torment.  Fingon the valiant, son of Fingolfin.  Their friendship was ancient, but the divide between Fëanor and Fingolfin had separated them of recent years, and now Fingon saw a chance to heal that division.

 

"High upon the shoulders of Thangorodrim he climbed, and looked in despair upon the desolation of the land; but no passage or crevice could he find through which he might come within Morgoth's stronghold.  Then in defiance of the Orcs, who cowered still in the dark vaults beneath the earth, he took his harp and sang a song of Valinor that the Noldor made of old, before strife was born among the sons of Finwë; and his voice rang in the mournful hollows that had never heard before aught save cries of fear and woe.

 

"Thus Fingon found what he sought.  For suddenly above him far and faint his song was taken up, and a voice answering called to him.  Maedhros it was who sang amid his torment.  But Fingon climbed to the foot of the precipice where his kinsman hung, and then could go no further; and he wept when he saw the cruel device of Morgoth.  Maedhros therefore, being in anguish without hope, begged Fingon to shoot him with his bow; and Fingon strung an arrow, and bent his bow.  And seeing no better hope he cried to Manwë, saying: 'Oh King to whom all birds are dear, speed now this feathered shaft, and recall some pity for the Noldor in their need!'

 

"His prayer was answered swiftly.  For Manwë...had sent forth the race of Eagles, commanding them to dwelll in the crags of the North, and to keep watch upon Morgoth...And the Eagles brought news of much that had passed in those days to the sad ears of Manwë.  Now even as Fingon bent his bow, there flew down from the high airs Thorondor, King of Eagles, mightiest of all birds that have ever been...and staying Fingon's hand he took him up, and bore him to the face of the rock where Maedhros hung.  But Fingon could not release the hell-wrought bond upon his wrist, nor sever it, nor draw it from the stone.  Again therefore in his pain Maedhros begged that he would slay him; but Fingon cut off his hand above the wrist, and Thorondor bore them back to Mithrim." ~The Silmarillion, chap. 13 (Of the Return of the Noldor)

 

Thus was Maedhros rescued and the rift between the Houses of Fëanor and Fingolfin mended.