Saturday, May 7, 2016

#14 Moria

Moria, or Khazad-dum, is a Dwarven underground city beneath the Misty Mountains. For thousands of years, a thriving Dwarvish community had delved deep below the mountains seeking to build their lives there, to find treasure like Gold and Mithril. Mithril was only ever found and mined in Moria, no other Dwarven mountain held Mithril within. Moria was abandoned during the Third Age after Dwarves went too deep and awoke a Balrog of Morgoth. None dared take back the mountain in fear of the Balrog for centuries. Later there was an expedition led by Balin, Oin, and Ori to attempt to reclaim Moria. The Dwarves were successful in entering the mountain and rebuilding a home for many years, but then Orcs came to overthrow Moria. The main gates were overrun as countless Orcs flooded in and hall by hall took control of Moria. The last surviving Dwarves took shelter in one of the tombs and made their last stand as Orcs broke through the door like a hole in a dam. Moria was controlled by Orcs for many years, there were no more expeditions to retake the mountain. Later in the Third Age, The Fellowship of the Ring could not go over the mountain, so the only other option was to go through it, through Moria. Only a few in the Fellowship knew that Moria was overrun, but the other had still thought Dwarves controlled it. The Fellowship quickly realized Moria was not under Dwarven control and made their way to the Tomb, the same one that the Dwarves made their last stand. Like the Dwarves, The Fellowship had to make a stand in the Tomb, but held off the Orcs long enough for a short break to make a run for it. They fled to the center hall until the Balrog awoke, they then made their way to the Bridge of Khazad-dum. The Balrog caught up with The Fellowship by the time they got to the bridge, and there Gandalf made his last stand against the great demon while The Fellowship fled to exit. Gandalf and the Balrog fell as the bridge was destroyed and Gandalf, after a long battle, killed the Balrog and went to the Heavens. But he was sent back, his task was not complete and the Ring still survived, and so does Sauron, so Gandalf is to stay in Middle-Earth until the Ring is destroyed and The Free Peoples of Middle-Earth are saved. Later another expedition was led into Moria and finally drove the Orcs away and Moria was again under Dwarven Control.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

#13 Melkor

Melkor, later known predominantly as Morgoth, was the first Dark Lord and the primordial source of evil in Ea, the Universe. Melkor was created by Eru Iluvatar in the Timeless Halls, at the beginning of creation. Impatient with the emptiness of the Great Void outside the Timeless Halls and desiring to create things of his own, Melkor often went forth in to the Void in search of the Flame Imperishable. The Flame Imperishable is the Secret Fire of Arnor, made by the Ainur, a mysterious heavenly power in Arda. Originally the most powerful of the Ainur created by Eru Iluvatar, Melkor rebelled against his creator out of pride and sought to corrupt Arda. When the Valar entered into Arda and began to shape the new world, Melkor saw the Field of Arda and claimed it for his own. However, the other Valar took Manwe to be their lord. Manwe is Melkor's brother, not as powerful as Melkor himself but much more wise and full of knowledge. Bitter, Melkor set himself against the other Valar. Whenever the Valar worked to better the world Melkor disrupted their efforts. For a long while, Melkor fought alone against the might of the other Valar and Maiar of Arda, and he long held the upper hand. During this time, Arda was kept essentially shapeless, as Melkor ruined virtually every early work that the other Valar attempted to create. Fortunately for them, the mighty Valar Tulkas, a very strong and powerful being of the Vala, descended to Arda, and his strength tipped the balance in favor of the Valar. Melkor fled before him, and left Arda for a time. After Melkor left, Arda was created and born with life, marking the begining of the First Age. After committing many evils in the First Age, such as the theft of the Silmarils and the destruction of the Two Lamps, Melkor was defeated by the Host of Valinor in the War of the Wrath. Later Sauron took place or Melkor and became the next Dark Lord and made many attempts to take over Arda as Melkor did.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

#12 Witch-King of Angmar

The Witch-King on Angmar was the leader of the Nazgul, also referred to as the Ringwraiths, Black Riders, The Nine, or the Numbolg. The Nazgul were once great kings of men, men who were given rings of power by Sauron as a gift. These great kings did not know that the power of these rings were corrupt and that once they put the rings on, they were under Sauron's control. The Witch-King had a fortress in Angmar while his master Sauron was regaining his power. While his master was gone, the Witch-King had made an army in the mountains of Angmar and made an attempt to destroy Middle-Earth in the name of his master. He was very close to conquering Middle-Earth, but the Elves and Men had made one last attempt to defeat the Witch-King and gathered all of their armies to the gates of Angmar itself. The Witch-King was driven back to the spirit world and Angmar was no more. Later in the Third Age the Nine regained power and Sauron did and took forms again. They had no real role in The Hobbit as to the Battle of the Five Armies, but they did have a small battle with the White Council, Saruman the White, Gandalf the Grey, Elrond of Rivendell, and Lady Galadriel of Lothlorien. Sauron lost the battle and fled with the Nine to Mordor where he will start rebuilding his fortress and start to make a deal with Saruman. Many years after that event Sauron regained much power and did rebuild his fortress in Mordor and began to make an army that continuously attacked Gondor's borders. While Sauron was occupied with Gondor he had the Nine look for the ring, for it has called to him by Bilbo Baggins when he put on the ring saying goodbye before he left to Rivendell. The Nine went through all the Shire looking for Frodo, Bilbo's nephew whom he had given the ring to before leaving. Frodo evaded the Nine through the Shire and again in Bree when he met up with Aragorn and he made a trap for the Nine. Frodo was finally found at Weathertop when Aragorn was scouting ahead while the Hobbits slept. The Witch-King stabbed Frodo with a Morgal Blade, a blade of poison and corruption that will turn any into a Servant of the Nine if not cured. Aragorn then made the Nine flee by catching them on fire, soon after the Nine recovered and found Frodo before the River of Rivendell, where they were washed away by the powerful blasts of water that Elrond sent to save Frodo. The Nine then fled to Mordor to recover strength and to prepare their armies for war. After the event at the River, the Witch-King had special armor and weapons made for him and gathered forces at Minas Morgul. The Witch-King of Angmar made a full assault on Gondor and pushed them back to the great city of Minas Tirith. The Witch-King had broken the gates of Minas Tirith and stormed the city, about to claim it by getting to the final level of the city, the horns of Rohan called and he was sent to the front lines to confront them. He was then defeated and sent back to Mordor in a formless state until he could regain power. He then led one final attack at the gates of Mordor until Frodo had dropped the Ring into the Fires of Mount Doom and Sauron was officially defeated and the Nine's power was no more, as they died and could not return to the spirit world as formless beings, being banished to the Void along with Sauron. 

Saturday, April 9, 2016

#11 Men of Rhun

Rhun is a realm that is just east of Mordor. Rhun is also known as The East and Eastlands in Westron tongue, it is the home and kingdom of the Easterlings in the second and third ages. Rhun was mainly composed of tribes but all served Sauron in the land of Mordor. Rhun is a name used for all the lands east of Rhovanion. There is a body of water between Rhovanion and Rhun called The Great Sea of Rhun. None in Middle-Earth know what lies to the east, for even Gandalf the Wizard has not ventured that far east. Aragorn is the only one to ever venture there once but for an unknown reason. The geography shows another sea farther inland called Sea of Helcar, and beyond the Red Mountains called Orocarni. Rhun was the domain of the Easterlings, men of darkness who followed the dark lord Sauron willingly. During the Third Age, the two blue Wizards ventured east to the realm of Rhun, most likely to destroy the evil there during the great battle of Middle-Earth. The Men of Rhun were defeated by Gondor in the Fourth Age under the rule of King Elessar and Eldarion, his son. King Elessar made peace with the Men of Rhun and let them stay in their kingdom, for the dark lord was no more. 

Saturday, March 19, 2016

#10 Uruk Hai

While Orcs were the main fighting force, later the Uruk Hai were made. The Uruk Hai are as tall as an Elf, slanted eyes, thick legs and large hands. These Uruks were armed with yew wooden bows and broad-bladed swords. The Uruks were both in Mordor and Isengard, those in Isengard had different, almost stronger gear then the ones in Mordor. The Uruks were first made by Sauron in the late Third Age. There were more Orcs then there were in Mordor, but in Isengard Uruks made up 95% of the army, the rest were Dunlendings, Man enemies of Rohan. There are hybrids of Orcs and Men that make Half-Orcs, but the Uruk Hai are much stronger. The Uruk Hai are suggested to be hybrids of Half-Orcs and Goblins. The Uruks first came around in the year TA 2475 when Sauron used them in battle for the first time to take Ithilien in Gondor. The Uruks destroyed the city of Osgiliath under the symbol of the Red Eye of Sauron. The Uruks then later were mass produced in Isengard for Saruman to make an army to destroy Rohan. One of the great battles of Middle-Earth took place at Helms Deep, a fortress that Rohan would fall back to as a last stand, where Sarumans army would over run Helms Deep and almost destroy Rohan. Rohan had split forces in the region, one was at Helms Deep, the other was out in the wilderness. Just as the Uruks were about to break into the main hall of Helms Deep, the remaining soldiers inside the keep rode out on horses to meet the other army who had arrived just in time to save the keep. The Uruks were driven back to a forest east of Helms Deep that wasn't there before the battle. The forest was completely made of Ents who had traveled far to also help at Helms Deep. The Ents also had a split group, the others went to Isengard to finish Saruman once and for all. The Uruks in Mordor were all destroyed at the battle for Minas Tirith and when the One Ring was destroyed.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

#9 Orcs

Orcs are tortured and mutated Men and Elves who serve the Dark Lord. The first Dark Lord they followed is Melkor, or Morgoth in English tongue, then later Sauron, the last Dark Lord. Sauron followed in Melor's footsteps and wanted to take over Middle-Earth, then spread his will to the rest of the world and have full domination. Melkor had two great underground fortresses called Utumno and Angband, where he formed thousands upon thousands of Orcs to launch an assault on Middle-Earth. Melkor knew that he needed more power if he wanted to overtake the Elves and Dwarves, so he set out to find the Silmarils. The Silmarils are three bright shining clear gems that were forged from the essence of the Two Trees of Valinor, the first trees, and it is said these gems hold great power. While Melkor set out the Silmarils, the Orcs went into hiding with no master to command them. After Melkor's return, many of his Orcs survived in deep caves, pits, chambers, and tunnels of Melkor's fortresses. The Orcs then multiplied and spread to northern Middle Earth in the first war of Middle-Earth. In the First Age Melkor was driven back and banished to the void, Sauron then took his place as the Dark Lord. In the Second Age Sauron build his fortress Barad-Dur in Mordor and began making his army. The Elves and Men took notice in Saurons plans and came together to march into Mordor and confront Sauron to destroy him. Sauron was then defeated that day but his spirit was in the One Ring and still lived. The Orcs fled into caves as they did before and waited for Saurons return. Later Sauron did return but not in the flesh, still inside the ring, and rebuilt his fortress and his armies. He then later was fully destroyed and the ring was thrown into the fires of Mount Doom and the orcs fled into the Dwarven fortresses. They were then almost driven to near extinction by Durin VII when he reclaimed Khazad-Dum. The remaining stayed in caves and are presumed to be extinct over time. 

Saturday, February 27, 2016

#8 Elves

The Elves were the first and eldest of the Children of Lluvatar and are considered to be the fairest and wisest race of Arda given sapience by him. Elves do not physically age or are subject to illness, however they can be slain by violence or extreme negative emotion. The Firstborn, Elder Children of Lluvatar, were conceived by Eru alone in the third theme of Ainulindale, they are the oldest and noblest of speaking races of Middle-Earth. Elves are tall beings with long light colored hair, some have darker colored but most are lighter. At first elves sang with grace and merriment without speech but later developed speech and spoke with words. The Elves lived in the forests of Middle-Earth, eating no meats and only ate plants. The Old Forest and Fangorn were the only two that Elves weren't found in. Rivendell and Lothlorien were both mentioned and visited in The Lord of the Rings, Mirkwood, or Greenwood the Great, before it was corrupt, was also mentioned and visited in The Hobbit. These three locations were the three main houses of Elves. Elves tended to stay in the northern parts of Middle-Earth unless war called them elsewhere. After the War of the Ring, Elves left Middle-Earth to the race of Men and went to the Grey Havens, a passage way to the Undying lands, heaven pretty much. Most Elves left Middle-Earth but some stayed at the Grey Havens, no history shows how long they were there in the fourth age but most believe the rest died of grief or sailed to the Undying lands themselves.