Battle of Tumhalad

Battle of Tumhalad

Infobox Me battle

caption= Túrin Bears Gwindor to Safety
"(Illustration by Ted Nasmith)"
date= Year of the Sun 495 , First Age
location= Tumhalad
result= Angband victory
books= "The Silmarillion", "The Children of Húrin"
combatant1= Angband
combatant2= Nargothrond
participants1= Glaurung
participants2= Orodreth†, Gwindor†, Túrin

In J.R.R. Tolkien's fictional universe of Middle-earth, the Battle of Tumhalad was the last battle of the Elves of the kingdom of Nargothrond. It was fought on the plain of Tumhalad between the river Narog and its tributary, the river Ginglith.

Túrin Turambar, son of Húrin, a Man and an especial target of the malice of Morgoth, had become an influential commander of Nargothrond's forces. He had urged its king, Orodreth to abandon their prior tactics of hidden ambush and fight the forces of Morgoth in the open field. He conducted a series of successful offensive campaigns that cleared Mid-Beleriand and West Beleriand of raiding bands of Orcs and Wolves. He convinced the king to build a great stone bridge over the fierce, deep and unfordable river Narog that ran before the entrance of the fortresses of Nargothrond. While this provided swift access to the field for the army to attack the enemy, it compromised the strongest part of the defences of Nargothrond as an attacking enemy could now use the bridge to assault the gates which had previously been unapproachable if the river crossing was opposed. Túrin's sorties, ultimately, were only minor victories and had the effect of giving Morgoth a clearer idea of where Nargothrond was and some idea of the strength and capabilities of its army.

By the year 495 of the First Age, there was a mustering of a great Orc-host beneath the Ered Wethrin and in the Pass of Sirion. Messengers from Círdan the Shipwright brought these tidings and a warning from the Vala Ulmo to the Elves of Nargothrond that they shouldn't fight in the field but to stay in their fortress. Túrin dismissed these warnings and his previous successes led Orodreth to continue to support the tactics of Túrin.

Led by the Dragon, Glaurung, the Orc-host advanced south from Eithel Ivrin ravaging and burning the land of Talath Dirnen between the rivers Narog and Teiglin. Túrin and the host of Nargothrond were therefore drawn north and met the enemy there. Outnumbered and with no defence against the dragon their right flank was turned and they were driven west, retreating over the River Narog and uncovering the South Road to Nargothrond. On the plain of Tumhalad the battle was fought. Túrin and the Elves were trapped in the narrowing field between the river Ginglith and Narog where most of them, including King Orodreth, were slain. Only Túrin withstood the attack of Glaurung for he wore a protecting mask made by the Dwarves. He and some few others, escaped.

Glaurung, following his crushing victory in the Battle of Tumhalad, led his Orc-host south to Nargothrond, crossed the stone bridge, broke the gates and sacked Nargothrond, slaughtering most of its people and driving the rest off as slaves. Glaurung then set himself up as the Dragon-king of Nargothrond. [J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien, editor, "The History of Middle-earth", (1984), Vol. II, p. 103, "...setting up kingdoms of terror of their own...".]

The story of the battle and the fall of Nargothrond is told by Tolkien in numerous forms. The earliest can be found in "The History of Middle-earth", Vol.II, "Lost Tales II", "Turambar and the Foalókë". There is an incomplete epic poem in the "Lays of Beleriand". Others are in "The Silmarillion" and the sources for the "Silmarillion" in "History of Middle-earth", Vol.III-V, XI, XII. And in "The Children of Húrin".

ee also

*Middle-earth warfare


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Battle of Tumhalad —    The last battle of the warriors of Nargothrond.    The final desperate defence of Nargothrond against the forces of Morgoth led by Glaurung. The Elves were defeated and their lord Orodreth slain, but Túrin Turambar survived the battle, only to …   J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-earth glossary

  • Tumhalad —    Valley in West Beleriand between the rivers Ginglith and Narog, where the host of Nargothrond was defeated.        A field to the north of Nargothrond.    A field on the western banks of the Narog, bounded by Narog s tributary, the Ginglith.… …   J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-earth glossary

  • Glaurung — was the first of the Dragons, in J. R. R. Tolkien s fictional Middle earth legendarium. He was known as the Deceiver, the Golden, and the Worm of Greed. Nay! At least you are valiant. Beyond all whom I have met. And they lie who say that we of… …   Wikipedia

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