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“If you have a quarrel with us, Eragon, then give voice to it and do not gnaw on your anger like a dry old bone.”
Glaedr was a male dragon who was bonded to the elf Rider Oromis and the son of Nithring. He was the only dragon besides Shruikan known to have survived the Fall of the Dragon Riders, without taking into account the Eldunarí and eggs secretly hidden away in the Vault of Souls. Both Glaedr and Oromis remained in hiding in Du Weldenvarden long after the conflict, living on the brink of the Crags of Tel'naeír for safety. Their existence was a heavily guarded secret amongst the Elves, for if Glaedr or Oromis were to die before one of the remaining dragon eggs had hatched, then there would have been no one left to pass on the knowledge of the Dragon Riders to the new Rider.
Although Glaedr was a strong and rather large dragon (Saphira said herself that he was three times bigger than she was), he was disabled—his left foreleg was severed by a terrible blow, leaving a white stump in place.
Prior to the conclusion of the Siege of Gil'ead, Glaedr was the oldest and largest (not counting Shruikan's artificial size) of the remaining dragons. In his prime during the betrayal of Galbatorix, he was powerful enough to fight off two of the Forsworn's feral dragons as well as their riders and the assistance of another dragon's Eldunari (It is in this battle that Kialandí casts the spell that severely lessened Oromis’ ability to use magic), managing to severely wound Kialandí and his dragon. He also proved swift enough to distract and flee from their many assailants, at the loss of his left foreleg.
After the Riders' Fall, Glaedr would remain in relative seclusion with his rider, though he was still extremely formidable. He dwarfed Saphira in size and was more than a match for Thorn in their battle at Gil'ead, though he was hampered by his dismembered left foreleg which allowed Thorn to wound Glaedr several times on his left side. He was also able to break Galbatorix's powerful holding spell in a desperate attempt to save his Rider in the climax of their battle.
As an Eldunarí, Glaedr retained his vast knowledge and mental power. He was a vital aid to Eragon during the closing days of the war.
Glaedr hatched for Oromis when Oromis was twenty years old. They trained together as Rider and dragon. For nearly a century they traveled the world, carrying out missions and errands set for them by Vrael, the leader of the Dragon Riders.
After a century of service to Vrael, Glaedr and Oromis were allowed to retire to Vroengard to begin to instruct young Dragons and Riders, passing on their knowledge.
When Oromis and Glaedr moved to Ilirea, they took on one or two apprentices at a time. The length of time that they tutored other dragons and Riders is unknown. Eventually they took on Brom and Saphira I, Morzan and Morzan's dragon.
Morzan was full of self-importance and Brom idolized him. Morzan bullied Brom and took advantage of his devotion. Because of Morzan's cruel treatment of Brom, Oromis and Glaedr considered separating the two: however, they never did.
It can be presumed that Glaedr taught Morzan's dragon and Saphira I how to breath fire for extended periods of time, aerial acrobatics/combat and how to fly in various types of weather, the same way that he trained Saphira II later.
Morzan and his dragon were one pair of thirteen, called The Forsworn, who were lead by Galbatorix to destroy the Riders. Not much is known of Glaedr's activity during this time, but most likely he and Oromis attempted to fight Galbatorix and the Forsworn along with the rest of the Riders. At some point Oromis and Glaedr were lured and captured by two of the Forsworn, Kialandí and Formora, who cast a spell to trap Oromis and Glaedr in time, stopping them from escaping. Oromis cast a spell which replaced every part of their bodies in a slightly different position so as to escape the Forsworn. Kialandí cast a spell taught to him by Galbatorix, who in turn learned it from Durza's spirits, which isolated Oromis from the energy needed to perform magic. The spell was weakened because of Oromis' previous spell, but it would forever keep him from using anything more than small amounts of energy for the smallest spells. Kialandí's spell also shortened Oromis' otherwise infinite lifespan and weakened his strength. As they were trying to escape, Glaedr lost his left foreleg to a strike from Formora when she gave chase. Once Galbatorix conquered Ilirea for himself, Glaedr and Oromis fled to Du Weldenvarden. Other than Galbatorix and Shruikan, as well as some of the surviving Forsworn, they were the only dragon and Rider to survive the Fall. Brom also survived, although his dragon (Saphira) was killed in a battle for the control of Doru Araeba.
Despite losing his dragon, Brom continued fighting Galbatorix's reign long after all other Riders had been killed off and the elves and dwarves retreated. About eighty years after Galbatorix's campaign against the Riders began, Brom and the Varden successfully killed off all of the Forsworn and rescued one of three remaining dragon eggs from Galbatorix. Brom returned to Ellesméra to visit Oromis and Glaedr once more before going into seclusion. During this time, he told Oromis and Glaedr of how he fell in love with Selena and conceived Eragon. Oromis and Glaedr vowed not to reveal this secret unless it was necessary to do so.
Glaedr became Saphira's mentor, teaching her how to tame her breath of fire and also showing her how to properly fly. He ended up becoming Saphira's object of affection and Saphira thought he would be her mate, despite his large size, but her affection for him was rejected.
Later, with Eragon's advice, she apologized for her actions after she attacked him due to his unfavorable reaction, mirroring Eragon's romantic advances on Arya.
Glaedr, along with Oromis, met with Eragon and Saphira after they made their way back to Du Weldenvarden, following Orik's election as King. Eragon wished to know if what Murtagh had told him of his parentage was true and asked their masters if they knew the truth. They informed Eragon that they were but that Murtagh had been mistaken. They told Eragon that his father was Brom, not Morzan, and the pair related the information that Brom had given them years before. At the battle of Gil'ead, Oromis was killed and Glaedr suffered body death while Galbatorix was possessing Murtagh's body. Oromis, who suffered one of his seizures, was struck down by a blow from Murtagh. Glaedr ignored the rest of the battle in one last attempt to try to save his Rider. The dying elf asked for Glaedr to let him go. Enraged but truly alone, Glaedr decided to attack Thorn and Murtagh, biting off the last three feet of the dragon's tail. Thorn retaliated, biting Glaedr in the back of his head. Unfortunately this was the death of Glaedr's body and thusly ended the old regime of the riders. However, Glaedr had previously given Eragon and Saphira his Eldunarí (his heart of hearts) and lived on not in flesh but within the Eldunarí. It was through his Eldunarí that Eragon and Saphira felt Oromis and Glaedr's deaths. The shock of his rider's death sent Glaedr into an unresponsive and almost catatonic state, unable to be contacted. Only Arya was able to prompt a slight response from the dragon by murmuring to him in the ancient language.
Role in Inheritance Edit
Glaedr would retain his mute state for most of Inheritance—Eragon and Saphira were fruitless in their attempts to wake him and even Arya failed, remarking that Glaedr was possibly the most unhappy creature she had ever met and theorized that he might have lost his sanity. Glaedr finally awakened from his depressed stupor when he had witnessed Eragon spar unsuccessfully with Arya. Blödhgarm spoke rudely to the elderly dragon in an attempt to rouse him from his misery and later offered his wisdom to the young rider and through it, Eragon was able to overcome the elven princess in their final bout. Glaedr later conversed with Nasuada for the first time, pledging his support in the process.
He continued to act as a source of knowledge and support for Eragon and Saphira throughout the events of the book, teaching them to better hone their minds for battle as well as the process behind summoning the true forms of objects. At Dras-Leona he brought his formidable strength to bear against Thorn and Murtagh once more, supporting Eragon and his elven spellweavers in his battle against them.
He also assisted Eragon and Saphira's search for the Rock of Kuthian. Earlier, he had revealed the details of his and Oromis' ambush by the Forsworn along with the subsequent dismemberment of his leg. When they were discovered by the free Eldunarí, Glaedr was struck by joyous relief. It is revealed that all who had knowledge of the Vault of Souls willingly agreed to have the knowledge removed from their minds. This re-discovery brought Glaedr into a much happier mood. Eragon remarked that he spoke to Umaroth with a special degree of respect.
Glaedr participated in the siege of Urû'baen, continuing to support Eragon and Saphira along with the free Eldunarí. In the siege's end, he confronted Murtagh and stated that though he could not forgive what he took from him, Murtagh's assistance in defeating Galbatorix was truly admirable and the king's death had quenched much of his desire for vengeance. He and the other eldunari recognized the pair as true members of the dragon riders.
After the Varden's victory, he decided that he would be one of the four sane Eldunarí to help comfort and revive the personalities of the mad, confused Eldunarí that Galbatorix had held captive.
Glaedr was a large, gold dragon with a deep, rumbling voice. As was the case with dragons, his body was very muscular and often appeared to be on fire due to its brightness. He was around three times the size of Saphira. His most distinguishing feature was his missing left leg, with a white stump in its place.
Book covers Edit
Most covers of Brisingr feature Glaedr.
- The name "Glaedr" likely comes from the Old English word glær, which means "amber". While Glaedr is described as "golden" in the books, the color amber is typically described as a "honey-yellow color". Amber is a hard and translucent fossilized resin, produced by extinct coniferous trees of the Tertiary period. It is widely considered, mined, and widely used as a semi-precious gemstone.
- One of the Japanese versions of Eldest already featured Glaedr, instead of Thorn. Christopher Paolini stated that, because of this, the Japanese covers of Brisingr featured the Lethrblaka instead.
- Glaedr is the internet pseudonym of a poet: several of his poems concern dragons. (http://www.poemhunter.com/glaedr-the-poet/)