Beleriand was a large region in northwestern Middle-earth until the end of the First Age. Beleriand is between the sea in the west and south, and the Blue Mountains in the east. At the end of the First Age, Beleriand is destroyed and covered by the sea.
Eriador is a large region in Middle-earth. It is between the Blue Mountains in the west, the Misty Mountains in the east, the Ice-bay of Forochel in the north, and the rivers Glanduin and Greyflood in the south.
Rhovanion or Wilderland is a large region in Middle-earth. It is east of the Misty Mountains and south of the Grey Mountains and the Iron Hills. The river Anduin flows through it from the Grey Mountains to the Emyn Muil. A big part of Rhovanion is covered by the forest of Mirkwood.
Rhûn is a large region in Middle-earth. It is the lands east of Rhovanion, and around the Sea of Rhûn.
Harad or Haradwaith is the name for the lands south of Gondor and Mordor. The coasts of Harad were settled by the Black Númenóreans. The peoples living in Harad were often influenced by Sauron and made war with the western realms. In the Fourth Age the Reunited Kingdom of Arnor and Gondor made peace with Harad. In Harad also lived the elephant-like mûmakil (or oliphaunts).
Amon Hen (Sindarin: "Hill of the Eye") is a hill on the west side of the river Anduin, at the southern end of the long lake Nen Hithoel, by the Falls of Rauros. On the other, eastern side of the lake is the hill Amon Lhaw. On Amon Hen the Fellowship of the Ring was broken, and they went in different directions.
The Ered Luin (Sindarin: Blue Mountains), also known as Ered Lindon, are a mountain range in the far west of Eriador. Until the end of the First Age, the Ered Luin separated Beleriand and Eriador. In the middle of the mountain range is a gap, creating the Gulf of Lhûn/Lune, where the Grey Havens lie.
The Ered Mithrin (Sindarin: Grey Mountains) is mountain range to the north of Rhovanion. At the western end of the Grey Mountains is Mount Gundabad of the Misty Mountains, east of it lie the Iron Hills.
The Ered Nimrais (Sindarin: "Whitehorn Mountains") or White Mountains are a mountain range, which is between Gondor in the south and Rohan in the north. In its western part the White Mountains are separated from the Misty Mountains by the Gap of Rohan, near which is the valley of Helm's Deep. Through the Mountains ran the Paths of the Dead. The easternmost end of the White Mountains is the mountain Mindolluin, on which is the city of Minas Tirith.
The Misty Mountains (or Sindarin Hithaeglir) are a great mountain range, between Eriador in the west and Rhovanion in the east. At the southern end of the Misty Mountains is Isengard, at the northern end Mount Gundabad. Under the Misty Mountains is the old dwarven city Khazad-dûm.
Mount Doom (Sindarin: Amon Amarth) or Orodruin (Sindarin: "fiery mountain") is a volcano in northeastern Mordor. Inside the volcano are the Sammath Naur (or Cracks of Doom) where Sauron made the One Ring, and which is the only place where the Ring can be destroyed.
Weathertop (Sindarin Amon Sûl, "Hill of Wind") is a hill in Eriador; it is the southernmost and highest summit of the Weather Hills. The Weather Hills lie next to the Great East Road, about halfway between the Shire and Rivendell.
On Weathertop was the Tower of Amon Sûl, a watch-tower built by the kingdom of Arnor. Oneof the palantíri was kept in the Tower. In T.A. 1409 the Tower was destroyed, and only ruins were left. In October T.A. 3018, Aragorn and the hobbits camped on Weathertop and were attacked by the Ringwraiths; Frodo Baggins was wounded by a Morgul-blade.
The Anduin is the largest river in Middle-earth. It comes out of the Grey Mountains and flows through Rhovanion and the Emyn Muil. There it goes through the rapids of Sarn Gebir and into the long lake Nen Hithoel, after which it falls down the Falls of Rauros. After that the river Anduin flows between the White Mountains and the Mountains of Shadow. It flows into the sea in a broad river delta, which is called the Mouths of Anduin or the Ethir Anduin.
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Arnor was a human realm in Eriador. It was founded by Elendil and his people, who survived the Fall of Númenor towards the end of the Second Age. The peoples living in Arnor were the descendants of the Númenorean survivors, and the indigenous human peoples who had lived there before. The capital of Arnor was the city Annúminas on the shores of Lake Evendim in northern Eriador. Elendil became the first King of Arnor; after his death, his older son Isildur became King.
After the death of the tenth king, Eärendur, in T.A. 861, his three sons split Arnor into three new lands, one for each of them: Arthedain in the west, Cardolan in the south, and Rhudaur in the north. With time, all three countries were destroyed in wars against the northern land Angmar. After the War of the Ring, the land again became part of the Reunited Kingdom of Arnor and Gondor, ruled by King Elessar Telcontar and his descentants.
Bree-land is a small region in Eriador, which is around the Breehill. It has four villages: Bree (the biggest), Archet, Combe and Staddle. The peoples living in the villages of Bree-land are Men and Hobbits; it is the only place where both people live together. The only other place inhabited by Hobbits is the Shire. Bree is at the meeting point of two large roads, the Great East Road and the North-South Road, which made it an important centre of trade and travel.
The Lonely Mountain or Sindarin Erebor is a mountain in the northeast of Rhovanion. When the dwarves had to leave their ancient home Khazad-dûm, it became the new home of Durin's folk. They were led by Thráin I, who became King under the Mountain. Later Erebor was attacked by the dragon Smaug, and the dwarves had to flee again. In the story told in The Hobbit, the dragon Smaug is killed and the dwarves again return to the Lonely Mountain. Dáin II Ironfoot becomes new King under the Mountain.
Fangorn or Fangorn Forest is a large forest on the eastern side of the southern end of the Misty Mountains. Fangorn is the only known home of the Ents, a people of giant tree-like beings. The Sindarin word "Fangorn" translates to "Beardtree", and is also the Sindarin name of the Ent Treebeard.
Gondor was a human realm in southeastern Middle-earth. It was founded by the brothers Isildur and Anárion and their people, who had survived the Fall of Númenor towards the end of the Second Age. In the later part of the Third Age, Gondor was between the sea in the south, the Mountains of Shadow in the east, and the White Mountains in the north; in earlier times the land of Gondor reached farther north. The city Osgiliath, built over the river Anduin, became the capital of Gondor. Isildur also founded the city Minas Ithil east of the Anduin, and his brother Anárion founded the city Minas Anor west of the Anduin on the mountain Mindolluin.
Gondor had several regions. Ithilien is in the east, between the river Anduin in the west and the Mountains of Shadow in the east. Anórien was a small land north of the White Mountains, between the river Anduin in the east and Rohan in the west. Calenardhon was the land north of the White Mountains, which later became Rohan in the 26th century T.A. Enedwaith was northwest of the White Mountains, which was mostly abandoned in the later part of the Third Age. Between the coast and the White Mountains were several regions, from the west to the Anduin in the east. Near the seashore in the south were the regions Anfalas, Belfalas, Dor-en-Ernil, Lebennin, and Lossarnach. Along the Mountains in the north were the Morthond Vale, Lamedon, and the Ringló Vale. Southeast of the Anduin was the region South Gondor.
After the War of the Last Alliance of Elves and Men against Sauron, Isildur left to rule the northern kingdom Arnor, while the son of Anárion stayed to rule Gondor. In the 15th century there was a great civil war, the city Osgiliath was destroyed, and Minas Anor became the new capital. During the time of the rule of King Eärnur, the Ringwraiths captured Minas Ithil, and it was renamed Minas Morgul. Minas Anor was renamed Minas Tirith ("Tower of Guard"). Both cities were in a constant state of war, much of the action taking place around or in the former capital of Osgiliath. During the War of the Ring, Gondorian-controlled Western Osgiliath fell to Mordor, allowing Sauron to attack Minas Tirith. The Orcs attacked the city, but the coming of the Rohirrim forced them to stop, allowing the defenders to charge the enemy. The Battle of the Pelennor Fields was won by the Men of Gondor and Rohan.
The last King, Eärnur, disappeared in 2050 of the Third Age. After this Gondor was ruled by the Stewards of Gondor instead of a king until the end of the Third Age. After the War of the Ring, the land became part of the Reunited Kingdom of Arnor and Gondor, ruled by King Elessar Telcontar and his descendants.
Great East Road
Helm's Deep was a deep valley on the north side of the western part of the White Mountains, south to the Gap of Rohan. The valley was blocked by a natural series of hills called Helm's Dike. Behind this lay a fortress: the Hornburg. At the end of the valley is the entrance to the Glittering Caves.
Isengard is a fortress at the southern end of the Misty Mountains. It is a small valley inside a ring-shaped wall, the Ring of Isengard, and in its middle is a tall black tower, Orthanc. It belonged to Gondor, but in the 28th century it was given to Saruman. It housed a palantír. In the War of the Ring the Ents destroyed the ring-wall. After the War, the tower Orthanc was given back to King Elessar and the Reunited Kingdom.
Khazad-dûm was the ancient home of the Dwarves under the Misty Mountains. It was a great underground city and mines. It was the only place in Middle-earth where the precious metal mithril could be found, which made the dwarves very rich. Khazad-dûm was founded by Durin the Deathless early in the First Age, long before the rise of the Sun and Moon.
In the Third Age the dwarves woke a Balrog deep in the mines of Khazad-dûm. The Balrog killed King Durin VI and many Dwarves, and the surviving Dwarves had to flee and left for other places. Khazad-dûm got a new name, Moria, which is Sindarin for "dark pit".
Lothlórien was an elven realm, between the Misty Mountains and the Anduin. It lay on the land between the rivers Anduin and Silverlode, close to the dwarven realm Khazad-dûm. Lothlórien was founded in the Second Age, and Amdír became the first King. The elves of Lothlórien fought in the War of the Last Alliance of Elves and Men against Sauron. In the war Amdír was killed, and his son Amroth became king after him, but Amroth later left Lothlórien. Since then until the end of the Third Age it was ruled by Lord Celeborn and Lady Galadriel. Caras Galadhon was the main city of Lothlórien. Other names of Lothlórien are the shortened form Lórien, and the names Laurelindórenan, Dwimordene (Rohirric), or The Golden Wood.
Mordor (Sindarin: "Black Land" and Quenya: "Land of Shadow") is a land in the southeastern part of Middle-earth, east of the Anduin. It was the land of Sauron in the Second and Third Age. Mordor is surrounded by mountain ranges: the Ered Lithui (Sindarin: "Mountains of Ash") in the north, the Ephel Dúath (Sindarin: Mountains of Shadow) in the west and another mountain range in the south. In the northwest is the plateau Gorgoroth. At the foothills of the Ered Lithui in northwestern Mordor was Sauron's main fortress Barad-dûr. Southwest of Barad-dûr lay the volcano Mount Doom. Parts of Mordor are a wasteland. The southern part of Mordor, around the Sea of Núrnen was more fertile and used as farmland, to produce food for Sauron's armies.
In the Second Age an Elven people settled in the Greenwood, founding the Woodland Realm, with its capital on the hill Amon Lanc. After the end of the Second Age, the Elves went to live farther north. In the 11th century of the Third Age, Sauron settled himself in the hill-fortress of Dol Guldur on Amon Lanc in the south of the forest. His evil influence darkened the woods, although it lessened towards the north; after this the forest became known as Mirkwood. After the War of the Ring the forest was cleared of Sauron's influence and became known as Eryn Lasgalen (Sindarin: "Wood of Greenleaves").
The North-South Road is a long road running from the realm of Arnor in the north to Gondor in the south. The road began in the city Fornost Erain, the capital of Arthedain, crossed the Great East Road at Bree, and ran farther to the southern end of the Misty Mountains. There the road turned east, towards the cities Minas Tirith, to Osgiliath, and ended at Minas Ithil. A part of the road south of Bree is also known as the Greenway.
Rohan or the Riddermark (or short The Mark) was a human realm in southeastern Middle-earth, north of Gondor. Rohan lay north of the White Mountains, southeast of Isengard and southwest of the Emyn Muil. Originally it was a part of Gondor, and named Calenardhon. The capital of Rohan is Edoras, with the king's hall Meduseld.
But because of the plague in 1636 T.A. and the later wars, Calenardhon was mostly empty and very few people lived there. In 2509 T.A. the Rohirrim came south from the north, to help Gondor fight against a combined invasion of Men from the north-east and Orcs from Mordor. The Rohirrim helped Gondor win the Battle of the Field of Celebrant and the war. As a reward, Steward Cirion of Gondor gave the land Calenardhon to the Rohirrim. The King of the Rohirrim, Eorl the Young, swore the Oath of Eorl: that Rohan would come and help Gondor, if it needed help in its wars. Afterwards, the people of the Rohirrim moved into their new land, which they named the Riddermark or just The Mark. Gondor called the land Rohan (Sindarin: "Land of the Horse-lords").
The Shire is a land in Eriador. It is settled by Hobbits. Its name in Westron was Sûza "Shire" or Sûzat "The Shire". Its name in Sindarin was i Drann. The Shire was settled by the Hobbits in the 24th century of the Third Age. It is divided into four Farthings: the North-, West-, South- and Eastfarthing. The leaders of the Shire were the Mayor of Michel Delving, the Thain from Tuckborough and the Master of Buckland.
Númenor was a huge star-shaped island west of Middle-earth in the Second Age. At the beginning of the Age it was given to the human peoples who had helped the elves in the wars against Morgoth. In the middle of the island was the mountain Meneltarma, which was a holy place for the Númenoreans. Númenor was divided into six regions, one in each "star-arm" and one in the middle. The regions were Forostar ("Northlands"), Andustar ("Westlands"), Hyarnustar ("Southwestlands"), Hyarrostar ("Southeastlands"), Orrostar ("Eastlands"), and the central region Mittalmar ("Inlands"). In eastern Mittalmar was the region Arandor ("Kingsland"), with the capital city Armenelos, and the haven Rómenna.
Their first king was Elros Tar-Minyatur, brother of Elrond. Númenor became the most powerful nation of Men. But later many Númenoreans, including their kings, became power-hungry and became enemies of the elves. Towards the end of the Second Age, when it was ruled by King Ar-Pharazôn the Golden, Númenor was destroyed and sank in the sea, similar to the legendary Atlantis. Only a group of Númenoreans led by Elendil, the Elendili ("Elf-friends") or the Faithful, could escape the destruction of Númenor and came to Middle-earth, where they founded the realms Arnor and Gondor. The Akallabêth is the story of Númenor's history and downfall.
Some of the many names of Númenor were Westernesse, Númenórë (Quenya, the long form of Númenor) and Anadûnê (Adûnaic), both meaning "West-land"; Andor (Quenya) and Yôzâyan (Adûnaic), which both mean "the Land of the Gift". Later it was also called Atalantë (Quenya) and Akallabêth (Adûnaic), both meaning "the Downfallen".
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