Middle-earth is a region within J.R.R. Tolkien's fantasy world Arda and the setting for The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.

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Who were those “many” in whom the Eldar saw Lúthien's likeness?

A passage in The Silmarillion tells about Lúthien: Yet in her choice the Two Kindreds have been joined; and she is the forerunner of many in whom the Eldar see yet, thought all the world is ...
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What would happen if an Istar broke the Valar's rule but saved Middle Earth anyway?

If, for example, Gandalf went full Maia, took the Ring and dumped it into Mount Doom before anyone, even Sauron, could stop him—what would happen?
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Why is it called Middle-Earth?

The planet is called Arda. So why do they call it "Middle-Earth" if there is no planet called Earth to have a middle of?
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Who was on the White Council?

Does Tolkien ever list the various members of the White Council? How many people were even on it? Who was on the White Council?
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Has the Tolkien Estate considered allowing other authors to write additional stories in Middle Earth?

Aside from Christopher Tolkien's History of Middle Earth, the Silmarillion and the Children of Hurin, which were all primarily Tolkien's work, has his estate ever considered allowing other authors to ...
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What's the difference between an orc and a goblin in the Lord of the Rings? [duplicate]

I mean, are there significant physical, mental, emotional (if any of them had emotions that is) differences that separate them?
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Why do people talk about Wizards as though they are common in The Lord of the Rings?

People say things like: "Never trust Wizards" They talk about Wizards like they're abundant, when in reality there are only five, two of whom (the blue wizards) aren't even known to be active, ...
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Why does Gandalf say “the West that is forgotten”?

Inspired by this question and namely by this passage (emphasis mine): “Many are my names in many countries: Mithrandir among the Elves, Tharkûn to the Dwarves; Olórin I was in my youth in the ...
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Do Tolkien elves know how to swim?

Since Tolkien elves seem to live primarily in deep, land-locked forests, it seems like they might not know how to swim. Or at least, strong swimming skills would not be common in their culture. Is ...
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In LOTR is there an afterlife?

We know in the Undying Lands, Valinor: ... This latter name is somewhat misleading; the land itself, while blessed, did not cause mortals to live forever In addition Valinor appears to be an ...
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How are the lands of the Shire governed?

In the Lord of the Rings books Frodo moves around into various districts of the Shire; he encounters different law enforcement, leaders and townships. Is there a unifying power in the Shire? Is it ...
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Why did Eru in LOTR create so many species?

In looking at this question it brings to mind, in-universe (all of JRT writings) did he ever say why Eru created multiple species that can communicate? Elves, Hobbits, Dwarfs? Was it just to make the ...
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Is there a legal system in Middle Earth?

I was re-watching the Hobbit films last weekend, and noticed in "An Unexpected Journey", there is a scene in Bag End where the Dwarves present Bilbo with a contract, outlining the many potential ...
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Did Tolkien create any characters based on people he knew?

Tolkien had a lot of influence from religion, mythology and geography as mentioned here to create what seems like an entire literary universe. It's also not uncommon for authors to be influenced by ...
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What was the first story set in or about Middle Earth that J.R.R. Tolkien wrote?

Many books and stories were written by Tolkien and later edited by his son Christopher, but which one was the very first of all of his Middle Earth stories?
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Is there an in-universe explanation for the reference to “big people” in The Hobbit? [duplicate]

In the first chapter of The Hobbit there is a passage which appears to describe hobbits as though they exist in the same universe as real-world humans: I suppose hobbits need some description ...
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Are there many inns in Middle-earth?

The Lord of the Rings is narrated as experienced by the hobbits of the Fellowship. That is why we get a rather detailed description of the Shire. And its inns, of course. There would be the Green ...
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Has anyone gotten married more than once in the LOTR universe?

As far as I can tell I haven't noticed in the LOTR universe any mentions of 2nd husbands or wives (assuming that two people declaring themselves partners are married). I understand that Tolkien, as a ...
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Did the Peoples of Middle Earth know of Beleriand in the Third Age?

Did the people of Middle-earth know of the lands of old that sunk west of the Blue Mountains, or was it just not common knowledge? For example: If by chance somebody brought up Beleriand, would ...
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Turin Turambar and Dagor Dagorath [closed]

I have a question about Turin's role in the Dagor Dagorath: How is Turin going to return to Middle Earth for the final day of doom?
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Other than Sauron, Gollum, Frodo and Bilbo, did anyone ever possess the One Ring for long enough to be affected by it?

Other than the four characters mentioned in the title, did anyone ever have the ring in their possession for an extended period of time? Long enough that it began to affect them mentally or ...
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How Are Orcs Mortal?

Coming from this question: Are Tolkien's orcs immortal? But then if Orcs are not immortal, does that mean that they are not the result of breeding corrupted elves? Or does becoming corrupted rob you ...
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Are the Elves Aware that Gandalf (Etc.) Are Maiar? [duplicate]

I was inspired to ask this question by Why was Gandalf the Gray so underestimated? [closed] Basically, are they aware that they are basically godlike beings of immense power and wisdom on a mission ...
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Did Tolkien have Pippin die originally?

According to the movie mistakes website for Return of the King, it is mentioned that Tolkien had Pippin originally killed off at the Battle of the Black Gates. He was pursuaded by his dear friend C.S. ...
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Why does the Morgul blade dissolve after Aragorn touches it?

When Aragorn touches the Morgul blade in the Fellowship movie, it dissolves.What is the reason for this?
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Why did it take Gondor and Rivendell so long to send aid to Arnor?

Considering the battle the petty-realms had with the witch king lasted for hundreds of years, one would think Gondor and Rivendell would act quicker, surely? So why is it not until Arnor is pretty ...
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Why does Gimli say that Galadriel is an “elf witch” who seduces men?

In Fellowship movie, Gimli warns the Hobbits about the "elf witch" who lives in Lorien.He says that men who look upon her "fall under her spell and are never seen again" It seems to me that Gimli is ...
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Was the ring Narya ever intended to be passed to a mortal?

The ring Narya was one of three made by the Elvish prince Celebrimbor with the aid of Sauron. This particular ring was described as having the following abilities: To inspire and invoke courage from ...
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How long can Frodo live in the Undying Lands? [duplicate]

Does he live "unto the ending of the world" like the elves and the Gods? Or does he die after his short hobbit lifespan?
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Is there any explanation for Denethor's strange behaviour in the Return of the King?

In the first part, we are told that Denethor had been a good and wise Steward and had "held the forces of Mordor at bay" for long. When Pippin and Gandalf visit Minas Tirith, he seems quite different ...
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How did Sauron communicate through the palantír?

Did he possess one of the Palantíri at Barad-dûr? Or could he just "tap into" Palantír conversations at his will?
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Why does Saruman explain the origin of the Orcs to the Uruk-hai chief?

In the Fellowship movie, Saruman gives a long speech to the (newly created) Uruk-hai chief about how the Orcs first came into being and then proceeds to ask him about his loyalty. Why does he do this? ...
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Was Galadriel ever jealous of Arwen's beauty? [closed]

Is there anything in the books or movies which seem to indicate that Galadriel was jealous of Arwen's beauty? Especially since Galadriel is extremely prideful of her beauty? Like in I am ...
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Would a dwarf become a wraith if stabbed by the Witch King's blade?

Gandalf confirms it would have happened to Frodo if untreated. If they had succeeded, you would have become like they are, only weaker and under their command. You would have became a wraith under ...
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What happened to Arnor after the fall of Angmar in TA 1975

From what I can understand Arnor was invaded by Angmar, but Angmar itself was defeated by Gondor shortly afterwards in TA 1975. Formally Arnor was restored by Aragorn when he was crowned the King of ...
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Did Tolkien ever specify that Orodruin was a volcano?

It is incredibly clear that Orodruin (Mount Doom) was a volcano. It is a mountain with fire inside of it, and it periodically belches forth ash, smoke, and rock. This is what volcanoes do best ...
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Is there a map of Middle Earth during the second age? [duplicate]

Where can I find a map of Middle Earth during the Second Age circa SA 1600 (before the war of the Elves and Sauron)? The following site ...
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How are beings distinguished with respect to 'power' in Middle Earth?

Many characters are referred to, both in canon, and by the community, as being 'powerful'. Gandalf is a powerful wizard; Sauron is very powerful; Morgoth is one of the most powerful beings to have ...
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Which of his races did Tolkien draw?

This question isn't as broad as it might appear at first glance. I've seen drawings of dragons, Dwarves, Trolls, and Hobbits by Tolkien, and I'm primarily interested in only a few other races. He ...
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Was there only a single mithril-mail shirt made?

Considering mithril is both incredibly light and strong (compared to other materials such as steel) are there any references to there being more than a single mithril mail shirt (Bilbo's) ever being ...
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What defines an age in Middle Earth?

Looking at the various pages for the first, second, third and fourth ages, we see they are of varying length. I am wondering what is the definition of 'an age' in Middle Earth and how it is decided ...
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Was Grima the only one who knew about the weak spot in Helm's Deep?

In the movie at least of The Two Towers, Grima Wormtongue mentioned to Saruman a nasty weak spot in the outer foundations of Helm's Deep - a small tunnel which allows a wee stream to flow to and fro. ...
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Do we know anything about what a clock face would look like in Middle Earth?

What might a clock face look like in Middle Earth, assuming a device similar to a typical clock in the real world? Lots of sub-questions have arisen. What kind of subdivisions would there be? Are ...
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Who controls the Watcher in the Water?

There is a lake kraken-like creature in front of the gates of Moria, mentioned in the book and shown in the movies and I want to know who controls it? Is it an independent creature, or is it ...
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Are there any orc names mentioned in LOTR movie trilogy?

There are a lot of orcs that are mentioned by name in the Lord of the Rings books; Ugluk, Grishnakh, Mauhur, Gothmog, etc. But are there any mentions of their names in Peter Jackson's movie trilogy?
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How many Stars of Elendil were there, and what happened to each of them?

In The Lord of the Rings, Aragorn wears a jewel called the Elendilmir, or Star of Elendil, upon his brow. This stone, which was also known as the Star of the Dunedain and the Star of the North, was ...
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Who created the Dailir?

In the Lord of the Rings, the Sindarin Elf Beleg Cúthalion wielded what was probably the only enchanted bow mentioned in the history of Middle-Earth (at least, the only one I could find) which he ...
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How can Tolkien's characters see stars during the daytime?

In many places throughout Tolkien's works, he describes his characters seeing stars in the sky during daylight hours, usually when the characters are passing through deep, narrow canyons or ravines. ...
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Is there a companion or guide to The Silmarillion?

Since I finished reading The Silmarillion, and learned a little bit about how it was assembled, I've been curious as to whether there is some way to get a better sense of what the source material ...
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Why did Christopher Tolkien remove all references to England and Ælfwine from the published Silmarillion?

Reading through the History of Middle-Earth series, it's quite clear the Tolkien had England and Eriol/Ælfwine of England in his mind though most of the history of developing the legendarium. The idea ...