Arafain was a Silvan Elf warrior of Lothlorien. During the Third Age, he ventured to the west where he befriended Arveleg I, son of Argeleb I. When Argeleb claimed lordship over Rhudaur and Cardolan, Arafain tried to persuade the King to reconsider since it was unwise, but his efforts failed when the Rhudaurians resisted the Argeleb's claim and formed a secret alliance with the Witch-King of Angmar. Just as the armies of Angmar and Rhudaur laid siege to the Weather Hills, Arafain and Arveleg fought side-by-side together against the enemy. He was killed by countless arrows after sacrificing his life to save Arveleg. In honor of his sacrifice, Arafain decided to name his son Araphor years later.
In the Lord of the Rings drafts from the 1940s, Arafain was a fleeting substitution and transient name for Keleborn which later evolved to Celeborn the Wise. Roman Rausch suggested it might be a combination of aran “king” and a variant form of fein “white”.