Battle of Mirkwood
The Battle of Mirkwood known as Battle Under the Trees, is an incident in J. R. R. Tolkien's fictional world of Middle-earth. In his legendarium it takes place during the War of the Ring at the end of the Third Age. Mirkwood is situated to the East of the Misty Mountains, West of the Lonely Mountain and Dale, first being introduced in The Hobbit; the battle was a major, prolonged series of battles in the War of the Ring. The Orcs of Dol Guldur were repulsed. Sauron's main objective in the northern theatre of the war was the assault on Lothlórien, the majority of the forces from Dol Guldur were used to attack it. Dol Guldur used its remaining forces against Thranduil's realm. Sauron's plan was that his Easterling allies would join the attack on Thranduil, overwhelming them, thus allowing Dol Guldur to focus all of its forces on Lothlórien. However, the Easterlings were occupied with besieging the Dwarves and the men of Dale at Lonely Mountain, were never able to join the attack on Thranduil. Fierce fighting raged throughout the forest, there was "great ruin of fire" as woods were set alight during the battle.
King Thranduil led his elves to victory and defeated the orcs with the help of Galadriel advanced on Dol Guldur after Sauron's fall, destroyed the evil place. Middle-earth warfare
Aragorn II, son of Arathorn is a fictional character from J. R. R. Tolkien's legendarium, he is one of the main protagonists of The Lord of the Rings. Aragorn was a Ranger of the North, first introduced with the name Strider at Bree, as the Hobbits continued to call him throughout The Lord of the Rings, he was revealed to be the heir of Isildur and rightful claimant to the thrones of Arnor and Gondor. He was a confidant of Gandalf and an integral part of the quest to destroy the One Ring and defeat the Dark Lord Sauron. Aragorn led the Fellowship of the Ring following the loss of Gandalf in the Mines of Moria while fighting the Balrog; when the Fellowship was broken, he tracked the hobbits Meriadoc Brandybuck and Peregrin Took with the help of Legolas the elf and Gimli the dwarf to Fangorn Forest. He fought in the battle at Helm's Deep and the Battle of the Pelennor Fields. After defeating Sauron's forces in Gondor, he led an army of Gondor and Rohan against the Black Gate of Mordor to distract Sauron's attention so that Frodo Baggins and Samwise Gamgee could have a chance to destroy the One Ring.
At the end of The Lord of the Rings, Aragorn was crowned King Elessar Telcontar of Gondor. He married Elrond's daughter and assumed the Sceptre of Annúminas as King of Arnor, uniting the two kingdoms for the first time since the reign of Isildur; the son of Arathorn II and his wife Gilraen, Aragorn was born on 1'March', T. A. 2931. Through his ancestor Elendil Aragorn was a descendant of the first king of Númenor, Elros Tar-Minyatur; when Aragorn was two years old, his father was killed while pursuing orcs. Aragorn was afterwards fostered in Rivendell by Elrond. At the bidding of Elrond, his lineage was kept secret, as Elrond feared he would be killed like his father and grandfather if his true identity as Isildur's heir became known. Aragorn was renamed Estel to hide his existence from his servants, he was not told about his heritage until he came of age in 2951. Elrond revealed to Aragorn his true name and ancestry, delivered to him the shards of Elendil's sword Narsil, the Ring of Barahir, he withheld the Sceptre of Annúminas from him.
Aragorn met and fell in love with Arwen, Elrond's daughter, when she returned from Lórien, her mother's homeland. Aragorn thereafter assumed his role as the sixteenth Chieftain of the Dúnedain, the Rangers of the North, went into the wild, living with the remnants of his people, whose kingdom had been destroyed through civil and regional wars centuries before. Aragorn met Gandalf the Grey in 2956, they became close friends; the Rangers help to guard the Shire, inhabited by the agrarian Hobbits. In the areas around the Shire and Bree he became known as "Strider". From 2957 to 2980, Aragorn undertook great journeys, serving in the armies of King Thengel of Rohan and of Steward Ecthelion II of Gondor, his tasks helped to raise morale in the West and to counter the growing threat of Sauron and his allies, he acquired experience that he would put to use in the War of the Ring. Aragorn served his lords during that time under the name Thorongil. With a small squadron of ships from Gondor, he led an assault on Umbar in 2980, burning many of the Corsairs' ships and slaying their lord during the Battle of the Havens.
After the victory at Umbar, "Thorongil" left the field, to the dismay of his men, went East. Aragorn travelled through the Dwarves' mines of Moria and to Rhûn and Harad, where "the stars are strange". In 2980, he visited Lórien, there again met Arwen, he gave her an heirloom of his House, the Ring of Barahir, and, on the hill of Cerin Amroth, Arwen pledged her hand to him in marriage, renouncing her Elvish lineage and accepting mortality, the "Gift of Men". Elrond withheld from Aragorn permission to marry his daughter until such time as his foster son should be king of Gondor and Arnor reunited. To marry a mortal, Arwen would be required to choose mortality and thus separate the immortal Elrond from his daughter. Gandalf grew suspicious of the ring belonging to the hobbit Bilbo Baggins, discovered to be Sauron's One Ring. Gandalf asked Aragorn to track Gollum, who had possessed the Ring; this hunt led Aragorn across Rhovanion, he captured Gollum in the Dead Marshes northwest of Mordor and brought him captive to King Thranduil’s halls in Mirkwood, where Gandalf questioned him.
In The Fellowship of the Ring, Aragorn joined Frodo Baggins, Bilbo's adopted heir, three of Frodo's friends at the Inn of the Prancing Pony in Bree. The four hobbits had set out from the Shire to bring the One Ring to Rivendell. Aragorn, going by the nickname "Strider", was aged 87, nearing the prime of life for one of royal Númenórean descent. With Aragorn's help the Hobbits reached Rivendell. There Frodo volunteered to destroy the Ring in the fires of Mount Doom, Aragorn was chosen as a member of the Fellowship of the Ring to accompany him, along with Gandalf, Legolas the elf, Gimli the dwarf, Boromir of Gondor, the hobbits Pippin and Frodo's faithful gardener Samwise Gamgee. Elven-smiths reforged the shards of Narsil into a new sword, setting into the design of the blade seven stars and a crescent moon, as well as many runes. Aragorn renamed the sword Andúril, it was said to have shone with the light of the
Middle-earth is the fictional setting of much of British writer J. R. R. Tolkien's legendarium; the term is equivalent to the term Midgard of Norse mythology, describing the human-inhabited world, that is, the central continent of the Earth in Tolkien's imagined mythological past. Tolkien's most read works, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, take place in Middle-earth, Middle-earth has become a short-hand to refer to the legendarium and Tolkien's fictional take on the world. Within his stories, Tolkien translated the name "Middle-earth" as Endor and Ennor in the Elvish languages Quenya and Sindarin sometimes referring only to the continent that the stories take place on, with another southern continent called the Dark Land. Middle-earth is the north continent of Earth in an imaginary period of the Earth's past, in the sense of a "secondary or sub-creational reality", its general position is reminiscent of Europe, with the environs of the Shire intended to be reminiscent of England. Tolkien's stories chronicle the struggle to control the world and the continent of Middle-earth: on one side, the angelic Valar, the Elves and their allies among Men.
In ages, after Morgoth's defeat and expulsion from Arda, his place was taken by his lieutenant Sauron. The Valar withdrew from direct involvement in the affairs of Middle-earth after the defeat of Morgoth, but in years they sent the wizards or Istari to help in the struggle against Sauron; the most important wizards were Gandalf the Saruman the White. Gandalf proved crucial in the fight against Sauron. Saruman, became corrupted and sought to establish himself as a rival to Sauron for absolute power in Middle-earth. Other races involved in the struggle against evil were Dwarves and most famously Hobbits; the early stages of the conflict are chronicled in The Silmarillion, while the final stages of the struggle to defeat Sauron are told in The Hobbit and in The Lord of the Rings. Conflict over the possession and control of precious or magical objects is a recurring theme in the stories; the First Age is dominated by the doomed quest of the elf Fëanor and most of his Noldorin clan to recover three precious jewels called the Silmarils that Morgoth stole from them.
The Second and Third Age are dominated by the forging of the Rings of Power, the fate of the One Ring forged by Sauron, which gives its wearer the power to control or influence those wearing the other Rings of Power. In ancient Germanic mythology, the world of Men is known by several names, such as Midgard, Middenheim and Middengeard; the Old English middangeard descends from an earlier Germanic word and so has cognates in languages related to Old English such as the Old Norse word Miðgarðr from Norse mythology, transliterated to modern English as Midgard. The term "Middle-earth", it is found throughout the Modern English period as a development of the Middle English word middel-erde, which developed in turn, through a process of folk etymology, from middanġeard. By the time of the Middle English period, middangeard was being written as middellærd, midden-erde, or middel-erde, indicating that the second element had been reinterpreted, based on its similarity to the word for "earth"; the shift in meaning was not great, however: middangeard properly meant "middle enclosure" instead of "middle-earth".
Tolkien first encountered the term middangeard in an Old English fragment he studied in 1914: Éala éarendel engla beorhtast / ofer middangeard monnum sended. Hail Earendel, brightest of angels / above the middle-earth sent unto men; this quote is from the second of the fragmentary remnants of the Crist poems by Cynewulf. The name Éarendel was the inspiration for Tolkien's mariner Eärendil, who set sail from the lands of Middle-earth to ask for aid from the angelic powers, the Valar. Tolkien's earliest poem about Eärendil, from 1914, the same year he read the Crist poems, refers to "the mid-world's rim"; the concept of middangeard was considered by Tolkien to be the same as a particular usage of the Greek word οἰκουμένη - oikoumenē. In this usage Tolkien says that the oikoumenē is "the abiding place of men". Tolkien wrote: Middle-earth is... not my own invention. It is a modernization or alteration... of an old word for the inhabited world of Men, the oikoumene: middle because thought of vaguely as set amidst the encircling Seas and between ice of the North and the fire of the South.
O. English middan-geard, mediaeval E. midden-erd, middle-erd. Many reviewers seem to assume. However, the term "Middle-earth" is not found in Tolkien's earliest writings about Middle-earth, dating from the early 1920s and published in The Book of Lost Tales. Nor is the term used in The Hobbit. Tolkien began to use the term "Middle-earth" in the late 1930s, in place of the earlier terms "Great Lands", "Outer Lands", "Hither Lands"
Ents are a race of beings in J. R. R. Tolkien's fantasy world Middle-earth who resemble trees, they are similar to the talking trees in folklore around the world. Their name is derived from the Anglo-Saxon word for giant; the Ents appear in The Lord of the Rings as ancient shepherds of the forest and allies of the free peoples of Middle-earth during the War of the Ring. The Ent who figures most prominently in the book is Treebeard, who claims to be the oldest creature in Middle-earth. At the time The Lord of the Rings takes place, there are no young Ents because the Entwives were lost; the Ents are akin to Huorns, whom Treebeard describes as a transitional form of trees which become animated or, conversely, as Ents who grow more "treelike" over time. Inspired by Tolkien and similar traditions, animated or anthropomorphic tree creatures appear in a variety of media and works of fantasy; the word "Ent" was taken from the Anglo-Saxon word ent, meaning "giant". Tolkien borrowed the word from the Anglo-Saxon phrases orþanc enta eald enta geweorc.
In its Anglo-Saxon sense, the word "Ent" denotes the most ubiquitous of all creatures in fantasy and folklore, for the word can refer to a variety of large humanoid creatures, such as giants, trolls, or the monster Grendel from the poem Beowulf. Along with Old Norse jǫtunn, "ent" came from Common Germanic *etunaz. Treebeard, called by Gandalf the oldest living Ent and the oldest living thing that walks in Middle-earth, is described as being around 14 feet tall: large Man-like Troll-like, figure, at least fourteen foot high sturdy, with a tall head, hardly any neck. Whether it was clad in stuff like green and grey bark, or whether, its hide, was difficult to say. At any rate the arms, at a short distance from the trunk, were not wrinkled, but covered with a brown smooth skin; the large feet had seven toes each. The lower part of the long face was covered with a sweeping grey beard, bushy twiggy at the roots and mossy at the ends, but at the moment the hobbits noted little but the eyes. These deep eyes were now surveying them and solemn, but penetrating.
Ents are an old race. They were created by Eru Ilúvatar at the behest of Yavanna: when she learned of Aulë's children, the Dwarves, she foresaw that they would fell trees, desired creatures to serve as Shepherds of the Trees to protect the forests from Dwarves and other perils. Although the Ents were sentient beings from the time of their awakening, they did not know how to speak until the Elves taught them. Treebeard said that the Elves "cured us of dumbness", that it was a great gift that could not be forgotten. In the Third Age of Middle-earth, the forest of Fangorn was the only place known still to be inhabited by Ents, although the Ent-like Huorns may have survived elsewhere, as in the Old Forest. Ents exhibit wide variation in personal traits, as they came to resemble somewhat the specific types of trees that they shepherded. Quickbeam, for example, guarded rowan trees and bore some resemblance to rowans: tall and slender, smooth-skinned, with ruddy lips and grey-green hair; some ents, such as Treebeard, were like oaks.
But there were other kinds. Some recalled the chestnut: brown-skinned Ents with large splayfingered hands, short thick legs; some recalled the ash: tall straight grey Ents with long legs. Ents share some of the weaknesses of trees as well, their skin is extraordinarily tough, much like wood. Ents are an patient and cautious race, with a sense of time more suited to trees than short-lived mortals. For example, in the Entmoot regarding the attack on Isengard, their three-day deliberation was considered by some to be "hasty". Ents are tall and strong, capable of tearing apart rock and stone. Tolkien describes them as tossing great slabs of stone about, ripping down the walls of Isengard "like bread-crust". Treebeard boasted of their strength to Pippin; the book further lays out the power of Ents. The Sindarin word for Ent is Onod. Sindarin Onodrim refers to the Ents as a race. Nothing is known of the early history of the Ents. After the Dwarves were put to sleep by Eru to await the coming of the Elves, Aulë told his wife Yavanna, "the lover of all things that grow in the earth," of the Dwarves.
She replied, "They will delve in the earth, the things that grow and live upon the earth they will not heed. Many a tree shall feel the bite of their iron without pity." She went to Manwë and appealed to him to protect the trees, they realized that Ents, were part of the Song of Creation. Yavanna warned Aulë, "Now let thy children beware! For there shall walk a power in the forests whose wrath they will arouse at their peril." The Ents are called "the Shepherds of the Trees". Treebeard tells of a time when much of Eriador was forested and part of his doma
Battle of the Hornburg
The Battle of the Hornburg is a fictional battle in J. R. R. Tolkien's epic The Lord of the Rings; the battle pitted the forces of the Wizard Saruman against the Rohirrim under King Théoden, who had taken refuge in the mountain fortress of the Hornburg at Helm's Deep. The engagement is informally known as Battle of Helm's Deep or Helm's Deep after that location. An account of the battle is recorded in the climactic chapter "Helm's Deep" of the volume The Two Towers; the Battle of the Hornburg commenced after nightfall on 3rd'March' T. A. 3019, continued overnight into the morning of the next day. In the book The Lord of the Rings, The Two Towers, the size of the initial garrison at Helm's Deep for Rohan was nearly 1,000, but many more were coming into the fort from across Rohan; the estimated number of total Rohirrim defenders was 2,000 by the time. Merry says that the force that left Isengard numbered 10,000 at least, most marching towards Helm's Deep and others heading off to the Fords of Isen.
This number is qualified by Gandalf: "I have about ten thousand Orcs to manage", so more than 10,000 when the Men of Dunland are added. Though the battle appears lopsided, as Uruk-hai were much better in battle than simple orcs, the defenders managed to hold the fort until a force of 1,000 men on foot led by Gandalf along with a forest of Huorns arrived at dawn in the rear of the hosts of Isengard and surround the Uruks. Théoden was released by the benevolent Wizard Gandalf from the influence of Gríma Wormtongue, his malevolent adviser, he set out to the Fords of Isen, where his marshal Erkenbrand was fighting Saruman's forces. However, Théoden found out. Gandalf advised him to take refuge in the Hornburg fortress of Helm's Deep, an area named after one of their kings. Gandalf left on an unexplained errand. Théoden's army went to the area, where local people were commanded by a captain called Gamling the Old. Many of the forces there were old or young; the women and children of Théoden's capital Edoras were safe in Dunharrow, led by the King's niece Éowyn.
The forces of Saruman, common Orcs and Uruk-hai, along with some orc-human hybrids and human Dunlendings, arrived at the valley of Helm's Deep in the middle of the night during a storm. Meanwhile, Legolas the Elf and Gimli the Dwarf agreed to compete to see which one could kill the most orcs; the attackers scaled over the first defence, Helm's Dike, forcing the defenders there to fall back to the fortress. When the Orcs were close, the defenders drove them back with arrows and stones, but they managed to get close to the wall after multiple charges, they attempted to break down the gate with a battering ram, but a sortie led by Aragorn and Éomer scattered the forces. The Orcs and Dunlendings raised hundreds of ladders to scale the wall. Aragorn and Éomer motivated the tired defenders to repel the Orcs coming up the ladders. However, some Orcs had crept in through a culvert which let a stream out of Helm's Deep, while the defenders were busy with the assault on the wall, they were attacked from behind.
This was repulsed and the culvert was blocked up under Gimli's supervision. However, the enemies re-entered the culvert and blasted a wide hole in the wall using an ambiguous explosive device invented by Saruman, a "blasting-fire"; some defenders retreated to the Glittering Caves, Éomer and Gimli among them, while others including Aragorn and Legolas retreated to the burg itself. Soon Saruman's forces gained entrance to the fortress. At this moment however, Helm's horn was sounded, a cavalry charge led by Théoden and Aragorn rode forth, followed by all the Rohirrim left inside, they drove them back from the fortress walls. Both armies noticed that a strange forest had sprung up which blocked the escape route for the Orcs. Gandalf arrived on Shadowfax, with Erkenbrand and a thousand infantry – the remaining strength of the Rohirrim, routed at the Fords of Isen, they charged into the fray. The Dunlendings were so terrified of Gandalf; the surviving Orcs fled into the "forest" of Huorns, where they were annihilated.
After the battle, those Dunlendings who surrendered were given amnesty by Erkenbrand and allowed to return home. The Rohirrim required that all hostilities cease, that the Dunlendings retreat behind the River Isen again and never recross while bearing arms. Before they were freed, the Dunlending captives were put to work in repairing the fortress. Among the Rohirrim dead was Háma, captain of Théoden's personal guard and doorward of his hall. Háma had fallen defending the gate and the Orcs had hewed his body after he died, an atrocity that Théoden did not forget during the upcoming parley with Saruman. Gimli was wounded, but had killed 42 to Legolas's 41; the "forest" of Huorns had disappeared the next morning, the Orcs had been buried in an earthen-works hill known as "Death's Down". The event is sometimes called the Battle of Helm's Deep, a title, never used by Tolkien but, used by readers and other fans, this has led to the misconception that the term "Helm's Deep" refers to the fortress. Properly speaking, the fortress is the Hornburg and Helm's Deep is the ravine behind it.
In one of his letters regarding a proposed film
The Lord of the Rings
The Lord of the Rings is an epic high fantasy novel written by English author and scholar J. R. R. Tolkien; the story began as a sequel to Tolkien's 1937 fantasy novel The Hobbit, but developed into a much larger work. Written in stages between 1937 and 1949, The Lord of the Rings is one of the best-selling novels written, with over 150 million copies sold; the title of the novel refers to the story's main antagonist, the Dark Lord Sauron, who had in an earlier age created the One Ring to rule the other Rings of Power as the ultimate weapon in his campaign to conquer and rule all of Middle-earth. From quiet beginnings in the Shire, a hobbit land not unlike the English countryside, the story ranges across Middle-earth, following the course of the War of the Ring through the eyes of its characters, not only the hobbits Frodo Baggins, Samwise "Sam" Gamgee, Meriadoc "Merry" Brandybuck and Peregrin "Pippin" Took, but the hobbits' chief allies and travelling companions: the Men, Aragorn, a Ranger of the North, Boromir, a Captain of Gondor.
The work was intended by Tolkien to be one volume of a two-volume set, the other to be The Silmarillion, but this idea was dismissed by his publisher. For economic reasons, The Lord of the Rings was published in three volumes over the course of a year from 29 July 1954 to 20 October 1955; the three volumes were titled The Fellowship of The Two Towers and The Return of the King. Structurally, the novel is divided internally into six books, two per volume, with several appendices of background material included at the end; some editions combine the entire work into a single volume. The Lord of the Rings has since been translated into 38 languages. Tolkien's work has been the subject of extensive analysis of its origins. Although a major work in itself, the story was only the last movement of a larger epic Tolkien had worked on since 1917, in a process he described as mythopoeia. Influences on this earlier work, on the story of The Lord of the Rings, include philology, mythology and the author's distaste for the effects of industrialization, as well as earlier fantasy works and Tolkien's experiences in World War I.
The Lord of the Rings in its turn is considered to have had a great effect on modern fantasy. The enduring popularity of The Lord of the Rings has led to numerous references in popular culture, the founding of many societies by fans of Tolkien's works, the publication of many books about Tolkien and his works; the Lord of the Rings has inspired, continues to inspire, music and television, video games, board games, subsequent literature. Award-winning adaptations of The Lord of the Rings have been made for radio and film. In 2003, it was named Britain's best novel of all time in the BBC's The Big Read. Thousands of years before the events of the novel, the Dark Lord Sauron had forged the One Ring to rule the other Rings of Power and corrupt those who wore them: three for Elves, seven for Dwarves, nine for Men. Sauron was defeated by an alliance of Men led by Gil-galad and Elendil, respectively. In the final battle, son of Elendil, cut the One Ring from Sauron's finger, causing Sauron to lose his physical form.
Isildur claimed the Ring as an heirloom for his line, but when he was ambushed and killed by the Orcs, the Ring was lost in the River Anduin. Over two thousand years the Ring was found by one of the river-folk called Déagol, his friend Sméagol fell under strangled Déagol to acquire it. Sméagol was hid under the Misty Mountains; the Ring gave him long life and changed him over hundreds of years into a twisted, corrupted creature called Gollum. Gollum lost the Ring, his "precious", as told in The Hobbit, Bilbo Baggins found it. Meanwhile, Sauron took back his old realm of Mordor; when Gollum set out in search of the Ring, he was tortured by Sauron. Sauron learned from Gollum. Gollum was set loose. Sauron, who needed the Ring to regain his full power, sent forth his powerful servants, the Nazgûl, to seize it; the story begins in the Shire, where the hobbit Frodo Baggins inherits the Ring from Bilbo Baggins, his cousin and guardian. Neither hobbit is aware of the Ring's nature, but Gandalf the Grey, a wizard and an old friend of Bilbo, suspects it to be Sauron's Ring.
Seventeen years after Gandalf confirms his guess, he tells Frodo the history of the Ring and counsels him to take it away from the Shire. Frodo sets out, accompanied by his gardener and friend, Samwise "Sam" Gamgee, two cousins, Meriadoc "Merry" Brandybuck and Peregrin "Pippin" Took, they are nearly caught by the Black Riders, but shake off their pursuers by cutting through the Old Forest. There they are aided by Tom Bombadil, a strange and merry fellow who lives with his wife Goldberry in the forest; the hobbits reach the town of Bree, where they encounter a Ranger named Strider, whom Gandalf had mentioned in a letter. Strider persuades the hobbits to take him on as their protector. Together, they leave Bree after another close escape from the Black Riders. On the hill of Weathertop, they are again attacked by the Black Riders, who wound Frodo with a cursed blade. Strider leads the hobbits towards the Elven refuge of Rivendell. Frodo falls deathly ill from the wound; the Black Riders nearly capture him at the Ford of Bruinen, but flood waters summoned by Elrond, master of Rivendell, rise up and overwhelm them.
In J. R. R. Tolkien's fictional universe of Middle-earth, the eagles were immense flying birds that were sapient and could speak. Emphatically referred to as the Great Eagles, they appear and intentionally serving as agents of eucatastrophe or deus ex machina, in various parts of his legendarium, from The Silmarillion and the accounts of Númenor to The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Just as the Ents are guardians of plant life, the giant eagles are the guardians of animal life; these creatures are thought to have been similar to actual eagles, but much larger. In The Silmarillion, Thorondor is said to have been the greatest of them and of all birds, with a wingspan of 30 fathoms. Elsewhere, the eagles have varied in nature and size both within Tolkien's writings and in visualisations and films; the difference between "common" eagles and Great Eagles is prominently described in The Hobbit: Eagles are not kindly birds. Some are cruel, but the ancient race of the northern mountains were the greatest of all birds.
Throughout The Silmarillion, the Eagles are associated with Manwë, the ruler of the sky and Lord of the Valar. It is stated that "spirits in the shape of hawks and eagles" brought news from Middle-earth to his halls upon Taniquetil, the highest mountain in Valinor, although in the book the same is said of birds in general, in the Valaquenta of "all swift birds, strong of wing". Upon their first appearance in the main narrative, it is stated that the Eagles had been "sent forth" to Middle-earth by Manwë, to live in the mountains north of the land of Beleriand, in order to "watch upon" Morgoth, to help the exiled Noldorin Elves "in extreme cases"; the Eagles were ruled by Thorondor. When the Hidden City of Gondolin was built by Turgon, the eagles of Thorondor became his allies, bringing him news and keeping spies off the borders; therefore the Orcs of Morgoth were unable to approach either the nearby mountains, or the important ford of Brithiach to the south. When the city fell at last, the eagles of Thorondor protected the fugitives, from the orcs that ambushed them at Cirith Thoronath north of Gondolin.
The Eagles fought alongside the army of the Valar and Men during the War of Wrath at the end of the First Age, when Morgoth was overthrown. In The Silmarillion it is recounted that after the appearance of winged dragons, "all the great birds of heaven" gathered under the leadership of Thorondor to Eärendil, destroyed the majority of the dragons during a battle in the air. Tolkien mentioned the eagles in his accounts of the island of Númenor during the Second Age, he stated that three eagles guarded the summit of Meneltarma, appearing whenever one approached the hallow and staying in the sky during the Three Prayers. The Númenóreans called them "the Witnesses of Manwë" and believed that these eagles had been "sent by him from Aman to keep watch upon the Holy Mountain and upon all the land". There was another eyrie upon the tower of the King's House in the capital Armenelos, always inhabited by a pair of eagles, until the days of Tar-Ancalimon and the coming of Shadow to Númenor. In addition, it is stated that many eagles lived upon the hills around Sorontil in the north of the island, although in the last case it is unclear whether these were "great" or "common" eagles.
When the Númenóreans had forsaken their former beliefs and began to speak against the Ban of the Valar, it was in the way of eagle-shaped storm clouds, called the "Eagles of the Lords of the West", that Manwë tried to reason or threaten them. By the end of the Third Age, a colony of Eagles lived in the northern parts of the Misty Mountains, as described in The Hobbit, upon the eastward slopes not far from the High Pass leading from Rivendell, thus in the direct vicinity of the Goblin-town beneath the Mountains, it is stated that these Eagles afflicted the goblins and "stopped whatever wickedness they were doing". During the events of the book, eagles of this colony rescued Thorin's company from a band of goblins and Wargs carrying the dwarves to the Carrock. Having espied the mustering of goblins all over the Mountains, a great flock of Eagles participated in the Battle of the Five Armies. In The Lord of the Rings it is stated that the Eagles of the Misty Mountains helped the Elves of Rivendell and the Wizard Radagast in gathering news about the Orcs.
In addition, a prominent role is played by Gwaihir, the Eagles appear in great numbers towards the end of the book. In a parallel to The Hobbit, they arrived at the Battle of the Morannon, helping the Host of the West against the Nazgûl. Several of them rescued Frodo Baggins and Samwise Gamgee from Mount Doom after the One Ring had been destroyed; the idea of the Eagles transporting the Ring to Mount Doom, or at least part of the way, is not discussed in The Lord of the Rings and Tolkien himself never addressed it, except in an oblique manner. In The Letters of J. R. R. Tolkien, he stated: "The Eagles are a dangerous'machine'. I have used them sparingly, and, the absolute limit of their credibility or usefulness; the alighting of a Great Eagle of the Misty Mountains in the Shire is absurd.