Ancient dwarvish council spoke
of Mother Night’s foul spells that choke,
and the Giants, faithless friends,
on whom no Man should depend.
Singvatä Arunë, the Song of the World, Fourth Age Milean ballad
The Giants were one of the original Elder Races who walked the world before the coming of the Lamp of the Sun. The Codex Cameni Istoriorum (Book of Lost Histories) says of that time:
In the Age of Night there were trees that grew in the darkness, and grasses of pale silver that flourished where no stars shone. There were great oceans of fire and deep seas of verdant blue that nourished strange things that could not now grow in this cycle of the world. And in that time too there were the Great Races; there was no profusion of peoples, but only the endless Automachia, the War that Moved Itself. We may call these races firstly the Giants, of whom the Trolls are kith and kin…
There were many great kingdoms of the Giants: Alhame was first and greatest. Pernag contended with it, and was sundered to include both the old realm of Pernag and the new of Urhame. There was also Umbros, which was mighty but fell, and Aragos of the Wood, which stands still to this day.
Giants are said to have been born from the bones of the earth, and they return to the stone when they reach great age. Indeed, it has been suggested that the giants gave rise to the race of the Ents: that trees grown from the petrified forms of aged giants attained some nature of thought and life, quickening from their contact with the old gigantine thoughts that still moved sluggishly through the stone.