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Tolkien's legendarium character
Aliases Chieftain of the Drúedain,
Race Men
Book(s) Unfinished Tales,
The Return of the King

Ghân-buri-Ghân, or simply Ghân, is a character in the epic fantasy The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien. Ghân is the chief of the Drúedain, also known as the Woses, the wild men who inhabit Drúadan Forest.[1] In the third volume of The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, he leads Théoden, King of Rohan, through the forest so he can reach Minas Tirith with reinforcements.[2] In return, Théoden promises that his people will have peace with the Drúedain, and that his people will wage war and drive away the gorgûn (Orcs), that Ghân hates so much and that have been troubling the Drúedain. In the end of The Return of the King Aragorn, the newly crowned King of Gondor, gives the Forest of Drúadan to Ghân and his people, decreeing that none shall enter again without his leave.

Ghân-buri-Ghân is perceived as a "leftover," a prehistoric type of human surviving in the modern world. Like the rest of his people, Ghân has a flat face, dark skin and eyes, and wears only a grass skirt.[3] He is seen as a "good guy" with a kind of primitive nobility, a classic example of the noble savage.[4] He is by no means stupid, and he "refuses to be patronized."[5]

In other media[edit]

Ghân-buri-Ghân is featured in the promotional expansion card set of The Lord of the Rings Trading Card Game[6] and in the Lord of the Rings board game. The image for the latter was designed by illustrator John Howe.[7]


  1. ^ Smith, Mark Eddy (2002). Tolkien's Ordinary Virtues. Intervarsity Press. p. 108. ISBN 0-8308-2312-3. 
  2. ^ Day, David (1991). Tolkien: The Illustrated Encyclopedia. Simon and Schuster. p. 250. 
  3. ^ Chance, Jane, Tolkien the Medievalist, Routledge, 2005, page 100
  4. ^ Rutledge, Fleming, The Battle for Middle-earth: Tolkien's Divine Design in the Lord of the Rings, page 286, William B. Eerdmans Publishing, 2004
  5. ^ Stanton, Michael L., Hobbits, Elves, and Wizards: Exploring the wonders and worlds of J.R.R. Tolkien, page 79, Palgrave McMillan, 2001
  6. ^ "List of the 139 cards in the expansion Promotional Cards". Trade Cards Online. Retrieved 18 September 2012. 
  7. ^ "Ghan-Buri-Ghan". Illustrator John Howe. Retrieved 18 September 2012.