“And he issued forth clad in black armour; and he stood before the King like a tower, iron-crowned, his vast shield, sable unblazoned, casts shadow over him like a storm cloud. But Fingolfin gleamed beneath it as a star; for his mail was overlaid with silver, and his blue shield was set with crystals; and he drew his sword Ringil, that glittered like ice.” -J.R.R. Tolkien, The Silmarillion
The first sentence depicts a powerful man who emits a cryptic vibe, hence the selected vocabulary for his description, specifically with words and phrases like: “Black armour,” “like a tower,” “iron-crowned,” shadow,” and “storm cloud.” Tolkien repeats the word “and” over twice, making a specific statement on the man entering the room and solidifying his final position before the King. The man is dressed in a manner that presents him as an evil entity. As classic armour is usually constructed of silver metals, the “black armour” erases the shine and the hero-like quality of the traditional knight. Instead of the armour being one of a knight, it is black like the night. “Iron-crowned” depicts he is one of royalty or of power. The emblazoned description of his person, shows the importance of the gesture and statement he is making.
“But” Fingolfin displays another kind of power contradictory to the other man. Underneath the “[storm-like] shadow,” Fingolfin “gleamed.” In contrast to the other man’s darkness and night-like energy, Fingolfin emphasizes the light found in the dark. Making a similar and yet contradictory statement, the characters both build upon a certain powerful vibe they both carry, yet Fingolfin retains a knight-like image. He is described with colors of “silver” mail or armour and a “blue shield.” And a sword described like “ice.” The brighter and clearer colors depict a purer image, one of good rather than evil. Finally, giving the sword a name (“Ringil”) depicts power because, typically, things of great power or importance receive names.
Because of the position that the scene creates within the first sentence, “he stood before the King like a tower,” the mood emphasized is tension. “Glittered like ice” emphasizes a sharpness to his character, a sharp force against a stronger, denser force of a “storm.” One immovable force is pitted against another, as a leader.