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Old 01-14-2008, 02:41 PM   #41
Gwathagor
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Might View Post
As far as this "result of natural forces" theory is concerned I can see why you would reffer to Bombadil as such and as I stated above I can also well think of Ungoliant as another such result as well.
Indeed there is no clear proof for this, however, in absence of any other better thery for her origin I personally also share Gwathagor's opinion.
The proof is not very clear, I agree, but it is both a reasonable and functional theory. My primary reason for viewing Ungoliant as a manifestation of dark natural forces (anti-Bombadil) is the bit in the Silmarillion that describes her as being descended from the darkness that lay about Arda. It's not much, but it works.
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Old 01-14-2008, 02:46 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by obloquy
By positioning Ungoliante in opposition to Iluvatar you appeared to be implying that she was the Bad to his Good. If you intend merely to define her without judgment as Unlight (stripping away also the judgment of Iluvatar as Good) then my disagreement is lessened, but I agree with Thinlo and Legate and believe that you accord her more importance than she is due.

It's not a bad point for discussion, however, since it creates an interesting trinity in Iluvatar, Melkor, and Ungoliante: Iluvatar and Ungoliante at opposite ends as Light and Unlight, and Melkor all over the middle, not as Darkness (sorry Legate), but rather as Nihil: creative power inverted. Still, I think that defining Melkor in this way creates an overlap with Ungoliante's status as Unlight and the exaggeration of her importance begins to show more clearly. Melkor is the Enemy, not Ungoliante, and I think that describing Ungoliante as "unlight" without judging her evil is glib: Light and Life go hand-in-hand, as you point out; so, then, do Unlight and Death. If Melkor was evil, it is because of his extinguishing of light and life, and therefore Ungoliante too must be evil as this is her sole purpose.
Now I also do not position Ungoliant as some kind of opposite to Eru in terms of Good/Evil. That's far too reductive and also I think simply wrong. In essence you are coming at it from the same approach as I don't think we can possibly say Eru=Good, certainly not in mere human terms. Why? Because if Eru is omnipotent then we must also accept that it was he who produced Melkor and hence what Melkor did has its roots in Eru...and if you look at what is said about Melkor's deeds, this is perfectly acceptable even to those who want to see Eru as 'perfect' as Melkor's deeds result in greater deeds which end up to the glory of Eru. Etc etc...I've been over that one many a time

Ungoliant as Unlight and Eru as Light does not merely boil down to one being bad and one being good. Life itself in Tolkien's creation is tied up with a lot of 'darkness' in that Elves are doomed to be tied to the world as long as it lasts and Men must accept their doom in the form of Death. Ungoliant may or may not symbolise this fate, this counterpart to Light/Life, and not as a bad thing, but as a necessary thing. Where Melkor comes into this is that he tries to exploit that in his destructive aims, and note that Ungoliant in the end abandons him. It's important to note that Melkor seeks to corrupt and to create as well as destroy - whereas Ungoliant merely seeks to feed, not to make a mockery of Eru and the creation he and the rest of the Ainur conjoured up, even if it is Light which she finds so tasty.

Perhaps another idea to pursue may also be found in the law that every action has a reaction, and in Eru's use of Light to create life and existence he may also have created Unlight or negation. It may even be a necessary thing if he hopes one day to turn the Light off at Dagor Dagorath, which is referred to as the Unmaking of Arda if I recall correctly? Unmaking suggesting more than merely smashing it up into bits in a celestial temper but actually making it cease to exist entirely.

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Either we view Tolkien's world as a living thing, the histories of which Tolkien merely transmitted to us, leaving open all kinds of possibilities that he neglected to mention, such as the possibility that "there are other existences than Arda...created by Eru." Or we view it as a finite story, complete despite gaps in our knowledge because what we have is all that Tolkien wrote, in which case there is no possibility of "other existences than Arda..." because Tolkien never directly created them or even implied them.
Seeking to apply theory to Tolkien's work is not mere clever-dickery in this case, it has a real application The major conceit of the stories is that they have been translated from existing texts. In which case we have to ask who wrote them. Elves in the case of what we have in the Silmarillion? In which case haven't we got an Elves' view of things? Elves who admittedly had no concept of where Ungoliant may have come from and what her purpose was apart from ruining their Trees? What would their ability to imagine the purpose/nature of Ungoliant be?
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Old 01-14-2008, 02:52 PM   #43
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I agree with obloquy that opposing Ungoliant as an Unlight to Eru's Light is essentially dualism, and not a good idea.
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Old 01-14-2008, 03:04 PM   #44
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I agree with obloquy that opposing Ungoliant as an Unlight to Eru's Light is essentially dualism, and not a good idea.
In this theory, it isn't an opposition but a necessary part of a whole.
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Old 01-14-2008, 05:10 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by LalwendŰ View Post
Seeking to apply theory to Tolkien's work is not mere clever-dickery in this case, it has a real application The major conceit of the stories is that they have been translated from existing texts. In which case we have to ask who wrote them. Elves in the case of what we have in the Silmarillion? In which case haven't we got an Elves' view of things? Elves who admittedly had no concept of where Ungoliant may have come from and what her purpose was apart from ruining their Trees? What would their ability to imagine the purpose/nature of Ungoliant be?
The idea that the texts Tolkien translated contain inaccuracies--or, at least, demonstrate a subjective viewpoint, limited in knowledge and/or understanding--is a good one. So good, in fact, that I pointed it out many posts ago with reference to Ungoliante's origin myth. But I do not see how this is what you were referring to in the first place where, it appears to me, you asked a question which you had already demonstrated your own answer to. You asked, Can we separate the mythos from Tolkien as creator? while you had already admonished us not to forget certain possibilities of which Tolkien was unaware, or at least not himself the creator. I have no substantial disagreement with the portion quoted in this post; though I would say that the Eldar's understanding of Ungoliante ought to be considered pretty good, keeping in mind their relationship with the Ainur. Whether the knowledge of the wiser Eldar is what is recorded in Tolkien's work I do not know.
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Old 01-14-2008, 05:41 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by LalwendŰ View Post
In this theory, it isn't an opposition but a necessary part of a whole.
But Eru is not part of the whole, for he created it.
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Old 01-14-2008, 08:33 PM   #47
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But Eru is not part of the whole, for he created it.
You mean he's a TimBit? (gotta be Canuck to get this).
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Old 01-14-2008, 09:06 PM   #48
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I get it, I get it. And I'm not even Canadian.
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Old 01-15-2008, 02:28 PM   #49
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But Eru is not part of the whole, for he created it.
It depends. If it all came from him then he is naturally a part of it as it all reflects his essence.

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Originally Posted by obloquy
The idea that the texts Tolkien translated contain inaccuracies--or, at least, demonstrate a subjective viewpoint, limited in knowledge and/or understanding--is a good one. So good, in fact, that I pointed it out many posts ago with reference to Ungoliante's origin myth. But I do not see how this is what you were referring to in the first place where, it appears to me, you asked a question which you had already demonstrated your own answer to. You asked, Can we separate the mythos from Tolkien as creator? while you had already admonished us not to forget certain possibilities of which Tolkien was unaware, or at least not himself the creator. I have no substantial disagreement with the portion quoted in this post; though I would say that the Eldar's understanding of Ungoliante ought to be considered pretty good, keeping in mind their relationship with the Ainur. Whether the knowledge of the wiser Eldar is what is recorded in Tolkien's work I do not know.
And there's the rub. How you perceive Ungoliant and whether you speculate on things about her that are not written down by Tolkien depends upon whether you take onboard the 'translator' conceit and accept that as in any translation there can be odd things which do not cross over well and which after further investigation lead you to surprising conclusions (as for example in translations of Biblical text from the original Hebrew). Or if you take this text as simply something Tolkien wrote and which baldly does not allow for such exploration.

You can do either really, to fit your argument and it would still be OK
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Old 01-15-2008, 03:25 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by LalwendŰ View Post
It depends. If it all came from him then he is naturally a part of it as it all reflects his essence.
Would you agree that it is better to say, instead, that it is all a part of Him, since it came from Him? I think it's an important distinction, in the same way that a genus is not part of a species.
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Old 01-15-2008, 03:32 PM   #51
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Would you agree that it is better to say, instead, that it is all a part of Him, since it came from Him? I think it's an important distinction, in the same way that a genus is not part of a species.
Not that I would agree with Lal about Eru, but even this formulation of yours is getting very close to something that is called pantheism, which I think is also not Eru's case. Obviously, Arda is not a "part of him".

Anyway, what was the topic of the thread? *hint hint*
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Old 01-15-2008, 03:39 PM   #52
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NO NO NO NO NO NO! Heaven forbid. Allow me to underline the fact that I am NOT, never have been, and never will be a Pantheist. I had in mind more the idea of a sustaining, imaginative, creative will and grace, rather than a "god is in the rocks" concept. I do see how my post could have been construed that way, though. I tread dangerous ground.

My point was that Ungoliant shouldn't be viewed as any kind of opposite to Eru, who is really much too big to be compared to anything.
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Old 01-15-2008, 04:21 PM   #53
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NO NO NO NO NO NO! Heaven forbid. Allow me to underline the fact that I am NOT, never have been, and never will be a Pantheist. I had in mind more the idea of a sustaining, imaginative, creative will and grace, rather than a "god is in the rocks" concept. I do see how my post could have been construed that way, though. I tread dangerous ground.

My point was that Ungoliant shouldn't be viewed as any kind of opposite to Eru, who is really much too big to be compared to anything.
Interestingly, Melkor is "in the rocks." And presumably so are the others who participated in creation, though none poured more of their vitality into physical things than Melkor.

You're correct about Iluvatar and Ungoliante: Ungoliante is part of creation, necessarily, because of what we know of Iluvatar, and Iluvatar is above and detached from creation. It seems unlikely that Iluvatar would have created his opposite, and it seems impossible that he could have created her with power commensurate with his own.

However, the idea that Ungoliante was a negative byproduct of the positive act of creation is pretty cute, though it would seem to deprive Iluvatar of absolute omnipotence by subjecting him to a law that, in a way, would regulate his creative energy; and, assuming that he did not institute the law, undermines his primacy as well. Also interesting is Lalwende's idea--if I understand her point--that Iluvatar is only omnipotent and eternal relative to his own creation--information which would be promulgated only on a need-to-know basis (and the Eldar do not need to know). He is Almighty in the eyes of the Ainur and all orders below them, even though he may have peers, some of whom (e.g. Ungoliante) might potentially interfere with his universe. Unfortunately, this kind of speculation does not produce much of value and, ultimately, leads only to dead ends.
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Old 01-15-2008, 07:08 PM   #54
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Not a negative byproduct of a positive creation, but rather a negative byproduct of a warped positive creation. Creation in its original perfection couldn't have produced Ungoliant, but the discord that resulted from Melkor's rebellion could. And don't call it cute.
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Old 01-16-2008, 02:51 AM   #55
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Not a negative byproduct of a positive creation, but rather a negative byproduct of a warped positive creation. Creation in its original perfection couldn't have produced Ungoliant, but the discord that resulted from Melkor's rebellion could. And don't call it cute.
Hmmm, though wouldn't that mean that Ungoliant was in fact created by Melkor? Who could not create but only corrupt? She is clearly not a part of Melkor in any way, as not only does he make an attempt to enslave/enlist her, but she is able to leave him and instead be 'mistress of her own lusts'. That suggests to me she is at the very least a peer of Melkor as none of the beings he 'creates' (i.e. corrupts from other beings) seem to be able to do much more than lip service towards genuine independence.

Of course creation in its 'original perfection' did produce Melkor. So what does that say about the 'perfection' of creation?
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Old 01-16-2008, 06:42 AM   #56
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Hmmm, though wouldn't that mean that Ungoliant was in fact created by Melkor? Who could not create but only corrupt? She is clearly not a part of Melkor in any way, as not only does he make an attempt to enslave/enlist her, but she is able to leave him and instead be 'mistress of her own lusts'. That suggests to me she is at the very least a peer of Melkor as none of the beings he 'creates' (i.e. corrupts from other beings) seem to be able to do much more than lip service towards genuine independence.

Of course creation in its 'original perfection' did produce Melkor. So what does that say about the 'perfection' of creation?
It shows that even the Creator ain't perfect. Or maybe that evil is meant to be a part of creation since the struggle between good and evil enhances its beauty.

As for Melkor not being able to create, I believe it says that he only lost that power sometime AFTER entering Arda, when his mindset had turned from simply misguided(trying to find the Flame Imperishable, so that he could equal Eru) to evil(wanting to be the supreme ruler and to enslave everything else). His malice had grown, so that he could only create 'in mockery of others'.
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Old 01-16-2008, 08:36 AM   #57
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She is clearly not a part of Melkor in any way, as not only does he make an attempt to enslave/enlist her, but she is able to leave him and instead be 'mistress of her own lusts'. That suggests to me she is at the very least a peer of Melkor as none of the beings he 'creates' (i.e. corrupts from other beings) seem to be able to do much more than lip service towards genuine independence.
Can I pop in and say that it would make very good sense on this matter if she were an Ainu? Like the Balrogs, who were originally flame spirits similar to Arien, but were persuaded by Morgoth to join him...

Just dropping a few thoughts as a refrain
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Old 01-16-2008, 09:32 AM   #58
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Hmmm, though wouldn't that mean that Ungoliant was in fact created by Melkor?

No, because Morgoth did not create the darkness. He only participated in the struggle that helped mess it up. So, Morgoth though would have been partially responsible for the existence of Ungoliant, she still wasn't his creature. Thus, he could not completely master her.
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Old 01-22-2008, 02:31 PM   #59
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An interesting idea with Tom Bombadil, but I always considered Ungoliant a Maia and nothing I saw this far opposes it.
But then wouldn't that mean that her children, including Shelob, would be Maia. I'm not sure how that would work.
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Old 01-22-2008, 02:38 PM   #60
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But then wouldn't that mean that her children, including Shelob, would be Maia. I'm not sure how that would work.
Well, if we stayed with this assumption, what about Melian being Maia and her child being the most beautiful of the Elves? Similarly, Ungoliant as Maia could give birth to offspring of the nastiest of all spiders, which surely was true: not Maiar anymore, but also not "normal" spiders, but spiders of the size of a dog (in the degraded version of her grandchildren) or larger (Shelob).
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Old 01-23-2008, 02:50 AM   #61
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My take on this: the line "one of those whom he had corrupted to his service" strongly suggests Ungoliant is an Ainu (if not necessarily a Maia). I think you have to really strain to make it mean anything else.

However, I also believe that is a fairly late concept on Tolkien's part, and that in earlier versions his spider-monster was a being created of darkness or mist or whatever. This is just from memory, though.
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Old 01-23-2008, 05:11 AM   #62
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My take on this: the line "one of those whom he had corrupted to his service" strongly suggests Ungoliant is an Ainu (if not necessarily a Maia). I think you have to really strain to make it mean anything else.
*overlooks the others with the expression of superiority in his face*
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Old 01-23-2008, 08:31 AM   #63
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Little self-correction here...

Actually, now that I've found my copy of the Silm, the line is "one of those THAT he corrupted to his service". Not that this changes the sense.
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Old 01-23-2008, 08:45 AM   #64
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Can I pop in and say that it would make very good sense on this matter if she were an Ainu? Like the Balrogs, who were originally flame spirits similar to Arien, but were persuaded by Morgoth to join him...
This is a good parallel for another reason. Earlier, Balrogs were meant to be creations of Morgoth; Tolkien changed their origin to fit in with his later ideas. Same with Ungoliant.
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Old 01-23-2008, 02:42 PM   #65
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It shows that even the Creator ain't perfect. Or maybe that evil is meant to be a part of creation since the struggle between good and evil enhances its beauty.
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It depends on what you call 'perfect' and if that is a human concept. To explain that better, hopefully, Eru is beyond all that kind of thing, Eru simply 'is'. So Eru is light and darkness and he was capable of producing beings as different as Varda and Melkor, but good/evil do not come into it.

In many ways that would tie in very well indeed with Tolkien's own struggles to reconcile his own God who could on the one hand create everything but on the other could also set the boundary of Death. The latter sounds like a very bad thing but it is 'all part of God's plan' and all that. Just as Melkor and the possibility that Melkor might introduce discordancy by being given free will was all part of what Eru made.
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Old 04-24-2014, 02:53 PM   #66
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Oh, Ungoliant's easy. Let's look at the evidence. Exhibit A, m'lud:

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in ages long before she had descended from the darkness that lies about Arda, when Melkor first looked down in envy upon the light in the kingdom of Manwe
So we need to find the time "when Melkor first looked down in envy upon the light"; let's read the Silmarillion: Of the Beginning of Days. Exhibit B, m'lud:

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...far off in the darkness he was filled with hatred, being jealous of the work of his peers, whom he desired to make subject to himself. Therefore he gathered to himself spirits out of the halls of Eń that he had perverted to his service, and he deemed himself strong. And seeing now his time he drew near again to Arda, and looked down upon it, and the beauty of the Earth in its Spring filled him the more with hate.
Note the wording. "Jealous" - "envy". "Looked down". That can't be an accident. And this was just at the time before Melkor assailed and destroyed the Lamps, so yes, he was looking down on the light too.

So that's when Ungoliant came into the world.

Now let's read Of the Darkening of Valinor:

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But she had disowned her Master, desiring to be mistress of her own lust
So Ungoliant originally had a Master, but who was he? Let's read the same chapter in Morgoth's Ring, where there's a bit more dialog that CT diidn't use in the published Silmarillion:

Quote:
Thrice fool: to leave me first...
OK, so her Master was Melkor, she came into the world when Melkor overthrew the Lamps, and that was the time when Melkor "gathered to himself spirits out of the halls of Eń that he had perverted to his service".

So that's what Ungoliant is: one of those spirits.
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Old 04-24-2014, 07:38 PM   #67
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OK, so her Master was Melkor, she came into the world when Melkor overthrew the Lamps, and that was the time when Melkor "gathered to himself spirits out of the halls of Eń that he had perverted to his service".

So that's what Ungoliant is: one of those spirits.
I agree on Ungoliant's origin. I think she was one of the Ainu who entered separately from the Valar. That independence carried over though and I wouldn't put her in the same class as the Balrogs and Sauron, "perverted" into becoming his servants. Ungoliant was more of a co-conspirator: acting in concert with Melkor temporarily, for her own gain. Serving him was not her intention.
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Old 04-24-2014, 11:34 PM   #68
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Ungoliant probably one of the void creature.it came from the void,Maybe a side creation of eru.
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Old 04-25-2014, 03:56 AM   #69
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I agree on Ungoliant's origin. I think she was one of the Ainu who entered separately from the Valar.
Maybe but probably not.

There are at least two other examples of the Valar summoning "spirits" during the early days; first ManwŰ:

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But ManwŰ was the brother of Melkor in the mind of Il˙vatar, and he was the chief instrument of the second theme that Il˙vatar had raised up against the discord of Melkor; and he called unto himself many spirits both greater and less, and they came down into the fields of Arda and aided ManwŰ, lest Melkor should hinder the fulfilment of their labour for ever, and Earth should wither ere it flowered.
Then Yavanna:

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When the Children awake, then the thought of Yavanna will awake also, and it will summon spirits from afar, and they will go among the kelvar and the olvar, and some will dwell therein, and be held in reverence, and their just anger shall be feared.
It doesn't seem too much of a stretch to say that Melkor has the same power, particularly in his early days when he was still strong.

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Therefore he gathered to himself spirits out of the halls of Eń that he had perverted to his service...
As to what these spirits are, Tolkien doesn't say but I consider it doubtful that they're Ainur. The Ainur were created outside of (and before) Eń, whereas these seem to me to have been created within Eń and are part of it ("spirits out of the halls of Eń").
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Old 04-25-2014, 07:24 AM   #70
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As to what these spirits are, Tolkien doesn't say but I consider it doubtful that they're Ainur. The Ainur were created outside of (and before) Eń, whereas these seem to me to have been created within Eń and are part of it ("spirits out of the halls of Eń").
The spirits summoned by ManwŰ and Yavanna though seem to be lesser beings brought for service. Upon their arrival, they began to fulfill a specific purpose as ordered by the summoner. The same cannot be said for Ungoliant (or Tom Bombadil ).
That is why I see Ungoliant having a greater power with more independence of thought than the garden-variety Maia.
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Old 04-25-2014, 07:43 AM   #71
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The spirits summoned by ManwŰ and Yavanna though seem to be lesser beings brought for service. Upon their arrival, they began to fulfill a specific purpose as ordered by the summoner. The same cannot be said for Ungoliant
I argue that it can.

I gave the quotes above, but I'll repeat them here too just to put them in context. First:

Quote:
But she had disowned her Master, desiring to be mistress of her own lust
So when Ungoliant originally came, she wasn't an independent agent, she had a Master.

The obvious question is "who was that Master?" and we get the answer in Melkor's statement to her:

Quote:
Thrice fool: to leave me first...
So to summarize the evidence:
  • Ungoliant came to Arda (and remembering that Arda is just a part of Ea) at the time as Melkor overthrew the Lamps. I consider this beyond doubt.
  • At this same time Melkor called spirits "that he had perverted to his service" from elsewhere in Ea. This is also beyond doubt as Tolkien explicitly wrote it.
  • Ungoliant had a Master who she subsequently left, and that Master was Melkor. This is also beyond doubt: Tolkien wrote it.
So the reasonable conclusion is therefore: Ungoliant was one of those spirits.
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Old 04-25-2014, 02:31 PM   #72
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So to summarize the evidence:
  • Ungoliant came to Arda (and remembering that Arda is just a part of Ea) at the time as Melkor overthrew the Lamps. I consider this beyond doubt.
  • At this same time Melkor called spirits "that he had perverted to his service" from elsewhere in Ea. This is also beyond doubt as Tolkien explicitly wrote it.
  • Ungoliant had a Master who she subsequently left, and that Master was Melkor. This is also beyond doubt: Tolkien wrote it.
So the reasonable conclusion is therefore: Ungoliant was one of those spirits.
It's really a small point of contention, as I agree with most of what you say. There is nowhere any definite proof though that Ungoliant's arrival in Arda was because of Morgoth: only that she did his bidding for a time. Even Sauron was not "called" by Melkor from the Void. With the quote you've given in full context:

Quote:
And Melkor knew of all that was done, for even then he had secret friends and spies among the Maiar whom he had converted to his cause; and far off in the darkness he was filled with hatred....
Melkor did not summon those spirits from Outside: they were there in EŰ already, and though their corruption was unknown to the Valar, their identities were not.

Ungoliant, however, was an unknown entity to them.

Quote:
For though the Valar did not yet understand fully what had befallen, they perceived that Melkor had called upon some aid that came from beyond Arda.
The Silmarilion Of the Flight of the Noldor

To me the evidence points to Ungoliant being a unique quantity where Melkor's servants were concerned. She was apparently more powerful, able to use her shadows to defeat and confound the Valar themselves, and also unknown to them. That is why I lean toward her being an Ainu who entered on her own, then allied herself with Melkor.
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Old 04-26-2014, 09:21 AM   #73
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Melkor did not summon those spirits from Outside: they were there in EŰ already, and though their corruption was unknown to the Valar, their identities were not.
Actually in the source texts these are two separate groups: group (1) was his spies in Aman who reported what had been done, group (2) was the spirits he then called to himself. The texts certainly don't give any cause to indicate that they were the same spirits in each group, and I'd encourage a re-read. If group (2) were called from elsewhere in Ea (i.e they weren't in Arda) it would be natural for the Valar to not know of them.

Did I give the impression that I was arguing that he summoned those spirits from outside of Ea? That's a mistaken impression: the texts are clear that he called them from within Ea; whether they were created within Ea or had previously arrived from outside is not stated however, and that seems to be the main crux.

It's also important to recognise the distinction between Arda and Ea. Arda is the solar system (with Imbar/Ambar/the Earth as it's central stage), Ea is all of creation. It's possible for something to be within Ea but outside of Arda (like the stars and other galaxies, for example) and Ungoliant is only stated to have been something beyond Arda.

Beyond that I'm inclined to go with whichever explanation requires the least amount of personal extrapolation, and that - to me - seems to be that Ungoliant was one of the spirits that Melkor called from within Ea. After all, if she had been an Ainu, it seems more, not less, likely that the Valar would have been previously aware of her: they were Ainur too, after all. On the other hand if she was a spirit created within Ea but outside of Arda, subsequently corrupted by Melkor, it matches with everything in the texts and creates fewer contradictions and doubts.
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Old 04-26-2014, 09:51 AM   #74
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On the other hand if she was a spirit created within Ea but outside of Arda, subsequently corrupted by Melkor, it matches with everything in the texts and creates fewer contradictions and doubts.
I think this is an interesting idea. In Morgoth's Ring, essay II of "Myth's Transformed" mentions that "The Stars, therefore, in general will be other and remoter parts of the Great Tale of Eń, which do not concern the Valar of Arda. Though, even if not explicitly, it will be an underlying assumption that the Kingdom of Arda is of central importance, selected amid all the immeasurable vast of Eń as the scene of the main drama of the conflict" and shortly after Varda is described as "one of the great Valar of Arda."
This seems to corroborate with the idea which I believe Professor Tolkien speculated upon elsewhere (although I cannot find it immediately), that other Ainur may have been at work in other, notionally less important, regions of the cosmos. I think that might add to the notion that Ungoliant could quite literally be an "alien" creature, a being deriving from within Eń but not from the Solar System of Arda.
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