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Sack of Eregion

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Sack of Eregion
The Lord of the Rings (film series) - City of Ost-in-Edhil mural.jpg
Conflict: War of the Elves and Sauron
Date: S.A. 1697
Place: Eregion
Outcome: Destruction of Eregion, founding of Imladris
Combatants

Elves of Eregion and Dwarves of Khazad-dum

Hosts of Mordor

Commanders

Måns Björkman - Fëanor device.gifCelebrimbor

John Howe - Icon Mordor 1 small.pngSauron

Strength

Large force of Elves of Eregion and Dwarves of Khazad-dum

Large force of Orcs, Evil Men, and other creatures of Sauron

Casualties

Many Elves and Dwarves; most notably Celebrimbor

Unknown

The Sack of Eregion was the campaign in which Sauron destroyed Eregion to find the three Elven Rings of power or to find out where they are by torture. He also scattered the Elves that lived there.

Contents

Background

Sauron, after failing with Gil-galad and Elrond, targeted the Gwaith. In the guise of Annatar the "Lord of Gifts" in S.A. 1200 he presented himself as an agent of the Valar and taught them how to forge the Rings of Power. The Gwaith-i-Mirdain were easily tempted since they wanted to bring to Middle-earth the joys of Valinor[2][3]. The Rings would prevent or slow the decay of the mortal world, preserve what was desired or loved and also enhance the natural powers of a possessor even if that would mean disrupting the natural course of the mortal world.[3][4][5]

The Gwaith together with "Annatar" made several rings in S.A. 1500. Because of their friendship with the Dwarves, Celebrimbor presented King Durin III with a Ring of Power[6]. When Annatar had left (actually for Mordor) about S.A. 1590 Celebrimbor made the Three Rings[7] partly using the teachings of "Annatar".

However, Sauron secretly forged the One Ring in Orodruin, the mountain of Mordor. When Sauron took up his own Ring, the Elven wielders of the Three Rings understood his intentions and his centuries of planning came to nothing.

The Battle

Infuriated by Celebrimbor's defiance, Sauron led a host out of Mordor.[1] In S.A. 1695 this army invaded Eriador from the south.[8] Gil-galad sent out a force under the command of Elrond which joined with Celebrimbor, but they were unable to prevent Sauron from conquering Eregion.

In S.A. 1697, Ost-in-Edhil fell, with Celebrimbor himself leading a last desperate defence on the steps of the Jewel-smiths' guild house. He was taken captive by the Orcs, then shot through with Orc-arrows, and by some accounts, Sauron used Celebrimbor's body as a banner as he turned to face Elrond's army approaching from the north.

Elrond too would have been overwhelmed but for an attack upon Sauron's force from the rear by Dwarves from Khazad-dûm. Elrond was able to gather what remained of the Elves of Eregion and retreated northward.[1]

It is said that Celeborn fought in the Sack of Eregion, and he and Elrond narrowly escaped to a dell, where the latter founded Rivendell.[1]

Still, other survivors escaped into Khazad-dûm and were granted passage by their friends the Dwarves, coming eventually through the Mountains to the woodlands that would long afterwards be called Lórien. The Dwarves of Khazad-dûm indeed did more than simply allow the Elves to pass through their mansions; they went out against Sauron's armies. It was through their aid that the beleaguered Elrond was able to escape into the north and thus save many of the Elves of Eregion.[1]

Aftermath

Elrond, Celeborn, Elves of Lindon, and other Elves who fled the destruction of Eregion, established Imladris in S.A. 1697.[9] Many more refugees joined Elrond's host as Sauron ravaged Eriador during the course of the war. By S.A. 1700, Imladris, despite being besieged, was the only part of Eriador not under Sauron's control. It was liberated by Gil-galad's and Tar-Minastir's forces. After Sauron's defeat, a Council was held at that time, establishing Elrond as Gil-galad's vice-regent in Eriador and that Imladris should be maintained as an Elvish stronghold.[10]

Once the Dwarves returned to Khazad-dûm, the Doors of Durin were shut and remained so until the Fellowship of the Ring came there thousands of years later.

Just as Sauron's victory looked secure, a great navy appeared in the north, carrying the forces of Númenor sent by King Tar-Minastir. The Númenóreans put Sauron's armies to rout, and forced them back out of the Westlands. So Eriador was saved, but Celebrimbor's kingdom of Eregion had been wiped out, and a great many of the Rings of Power had fallen into the hands of Sauron.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn", "Concerning Galadriel and Celeborn"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age"
  3. 3.0 3.1 J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 131, (undated, written late 1951)
  4. J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 181, (undated, written January or February 1956)
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 154, (dated 25 September 1954)
  6. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, "Durin's Folk"
  7. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, "The Shadow of the Past"
  8. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B, "The Second Age"
  9. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B, "The Second Age"
  10. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, "The History of Galadriel and Celeborn"