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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Were orcs stronger in the first age?

I was thinking about how most beings were stronger in earlier times than in say, the third age. Did this apply to orcs as well? Did the power Morgoth put into the orcs in the first age make them ...
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Why was Gimli of such a low rank, compared to the other representatives chosen for the Fellowship?

Part of the members of the Fellowship were chosen as representatives of their race: Legolas for the Elves, Boromir for mankind and Gimli for the dwarves. Of those three, two were the heirs of a ruler ...
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Geographical error in the Silmarillion?

The following passage makes no sense: for nigh and two years after the Dagor Bragollach the Noldor still defended the western pass about the sources of Sirion, for the power of Ulmo was in that ...
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In Tolkien's Middle-earth, how far does Wilderland extend?

I was editing my answer to this question, in which I tried to describe the size of Wilderland, and found myself not quite sure what it included. Is Mirkwood part of Wilderland? Does it extend all the ...
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Why didn't Bilbo and the Dwarves simply enter by the front entrance? [duplicate]

When the dwarves and Bilbo arrived at Lonely Mountain, they went to the top to seek the open key hole to enter. When Smaug first conquered the mountain, he blew up the entrance gate... why didn't ...
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Was any attempt made to rehabilitate or colonize Mordor after the Second Age?

This question discussed what happened to Mordor after the events of The Lord of the Rings, but what happened after the defeat of Sauron at the end of the Second Age? There were literally thousands of ...
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Would the One Ring have stayed hidden if Bilbo hadn't turned up?

Gollum managed to keep the One Ring safe in his possession for over 600 years. His cave is very well hidden, the goblins living nearby appear to be unaware of it and aside from Bilbo's visit there ...
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Are there other instances where JRRT employed avian spies?

In both the book, and the movie, the Fellowship sees a dark cloud approaching before Legolas's keen eyes see the cloud is really a flock of birds likely spying for Saruman and the Fellowship hides ...
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Does the depiction of Uruk society in Shadow of Mordor have any basis in LotR canon?

We already know from the excellent answers on this question that the main storyline of Shadow of Mordor does not make a lot of sense in LotR canon. But for me the most interesting part of Shadow of ...
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Why was Sauron's return to Dol Guldur a surprise?

This question addresses why (or whether) Gandalf was surprised at Sauron's return to Mordor at the beginning of Fellowship, but I'm wondering about events before that. When the Necromancer was in Dol ...
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Is there evidence of purely artistic works in Middle Earth?

I recently came across this on Twitter: yesterday, student's & i realized there is no fiction in middle-earth. prbly no art. every story = story of something that actually happened— ...
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Why did the Valar call to Eru during the invasion of Valinor?

At the end of the Second Age, the Numenorean king Ar-Pharazon built a huge fleet with the intention of invading Valinor and taking immortality by force. They sailed East until they successfully ...
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Why aren't the Valar considered gods?

As an avid Tolkien fan and an increasingly active member of this site, I cannot count the number of times I've seen people refer to the Valar or Maiar as gods, only to be corrected by other members ...
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What happened to the Arkenstone?

The Arkenstone, a.k.a. The Heart of the Mountain was buried at the end of The Hobbit. Was it recovered at some later date? It seems unlikely that something that valuable wouldn't have been dug up ...
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Do I need to learn reading Runes to fully understand Tolkien's Middle-Earth series?

I have a Kindle edition of The Hobbit. In the beginning of the book, there's author's notes saying that English in ancient times weren't perfect. That's fine, then I saw the corrections made on Runes ...
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How did Smaug transport all of his gold and jewels?

Smaug first appeared in TA 2770 as a mature Fire-drake. I'm not sure if there are canonical sources which say his age or maturity, but he must have been quite large and quite old at the time in order ...
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What will become of Ar-Pharazôn and his men? [duplicate]

I've been reading through a book (I think it was The Complete Guide to Middle-earth by Robert Foster) and I'm uncertain what the ultimate fate of the Numenorians who invaded Aman will be? Ar-Pharazôn ...
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How well does Shadow of Mordor fit into Middle-earth canon?

The 2014 video game Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor takes place between the events of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. In it, an undead Gondorian Ranger named Talion is bound to Celebrimbor's ...
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Do regular folk in Middle Earth know about its creation?

If we were to ask Rosie Cotton: "What do you think, how was Eä created?", what would she answer? To my knowledge every culture has a story on how the world began. Most of them are probably wrong, but ...
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1answer
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Was there a trinity in Eru? [duplicate]

Being that Tolkien was a Catholic, I wouldn't be surprised if he made Eru three different people, but I can't think of any references to it. If so, who are the three persons?
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Why do people care so much for Frodo?

In The Fellowship of the Ring, after Boromir is blinded by the greed of Men and tries attacking Frodo for the Ring, Aragorn finds Frodo and tells him to keep the Ring, saying he'd follow Frodo into ...
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Is Bard a decendant of Numenor

When Bard is introduced in The Desolation of Smaug he's clearly a very powerful fighter, he shoots weapons out of the dwarves' hands and threatens the entire party. The only place we've seen a man ...
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Tuor, Beren and Luthien - the gifts of Mortality and Immortality from Eru vs the Valar

According to the legendarium It was a tradition under the Eldar and Edain that they [Idril and Tuor] arrived in Valinor, and that Tuor alone of Men was counted among the Eldar, immortal as other ...
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What would an orc do if it found the One Ring?

If an orc found the One Ring, would it try to use it? Or were the orcs "programmed" to turn it over to Sauron?
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Are humans a “good” race?

As we have seen, the various races portrayed in Middle-Earth each demonstrate very specific invariable characteristics. Where do humans fit in among the other races of Middle-Earth? Are humans a ...
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Is Legolas in The Hobbit Book?

Legolas is the son of Thranduil, the King of the Elves of Northern Mirkwood. He is also a member of The Fellowship of the Ring in The Lord of the Rings. Legolas also appeared in the films of The ...
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Who made The Rings of Power?

There are twenty magical Rings in the Tolkien's Middle Earth Three Rings for the Elven-kings under the sky, Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone, Nine for Mortal Men doomed ...
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Are Tolkien's orcs immortal?

Orcs were the most commonplace villains serving the Dark Powers in all of Tolkien's Mythology, a race of sentient beings bred by the evil Vala Melkor (Morgoth) during the time of the Great Darkness. ...
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Why do Tolkien's wizards look Human, and not Elven?

The two primary races of Middle Earth, those created by Iluvatar, are Elves and Men. And until quite late in the history of Middle Earth, the Elves were BY FAR the more significant of the two. They ...
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What are the differences between orcs and uruks?

In Lord of the Rings Trilogy they were Orcs and Uruks. I know orcs used to be elves, Saruman say's they were once elves but what is uruks used to be and how come they're bigger and better fighters ...
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How did the Black Speech come about?

It doesn't seem to be related to any other documented languages. Being endemic to Sauron's realm, with him persisting through the Ages, it would not likely have diverged naturally from another ...
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How old was Frodo when Bilbo Celebrated his 111th Birthday? [closed]

In The Fellowship of the Ring, Bilbo was celebrated his 111th birthday. Then he gave the Ring to his nephew (Frodo Baggins), after being confronted confronted by his friend Gandalf the Grey. How old ...
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What would have happened if Saruman had gotten the One Ring?

If the Uruk Army sent by Saruman had captured Frodo and had gotten the One Ring to Saruman, what would Saruman have done with it? Would he have given the Ring back to Sauron or would he have kept the ...
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Why does Saruman change his mind?

In Lord of the Rings, Saruman The White, the eldest of the Wizards and their chieftain, joins with Sauron instead of helping people fight against Sauron. What is the reason for him losing faith in ...
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1answer
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Why was Saruman sent to Middle Earth? [duplicate]

Gandalf a Maia (Spirit) was sent to Middle-Earth in human form to help the free peoples fight the evil of Sauron. Is the same reason for the Saruman sent to Middle-Earth ?
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Who can break another wizard's staff?

In the Lord of the Rings books we see Gandalf the White breaking Saruman's staff by just talking, a feat that couldn't be realized by Gandalf the Grey (IIRC Tolkien said this himself when talking ...
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Why did it take Sauron so long to regain strength?

According to the timeline of the Third age it took Sauron roughly 2460 years to regain strength and return to Middle Earth. Why did it take him that long? And if he "returns" to Middle Earth, where ...
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In the Lord of the Rings, was the Witch-king aware of the prophecy about his death?

I am of course referring to Glorfindel's prophecy about Witch-king's death: 'Eärnur now rode back, but Glorfindel, looking into the gathering dark, said: "Do not pursue him! He will not return ...
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How does a palantír work?

Can they only see to another palantíri or can they see whatever they want? And if they can see whatever they want, what does it take for someone to be able to redirect or command what you want to see? ...
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Did the force-like magic exist within LOTR books?

I'm talking about the magic that resembles The Force (from star wars) that Saruman and Gandalf use against each other in the wizard duel in Isengard, I'm referring to the one in The Fellowship of the ...
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1answer
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Did Glorfindel do anything for the War of the Ring?

After he was re-embodied, and aside from helping Frodo get to Rivendell, did Glorfindel do anything to aid in the war against Sauron?
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1answer
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Is Narya as portrayed in PJ's movies the official Narya?

Basically what my title says, is the Narya in Peter Jackson's movies the official Narya or would it be considered... what's it called... Artistic license?
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How old is Gandalf?

In the Lord of The Rings trilogy, does anyone know how old Gandalf is? I remember reading that Gandalf was much older than he looked. Do the books ever say how old he is ?
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1answer
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Sam's apparent invisibility to Sauron [duplicate]

How come Sauron wasn't able to detect Sam in the last chapter of The Two Towers? I'm pretty sure he wore it longer than Frodo in Amon Hen, and Frodo was detected in the latter, was he not? Plus, Sam ...
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1answer
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Witchking ignoring Frodo's presence in Minas Morgul?

When Mordor's army is marching out of Minas Morgul and Frodo, Sam and Gollum are nearby, The Witchking stops all of the sudden and starts looking around. I remember reading somewhere that he indeed ...
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Why were the people of Rhun and Harad allied with Sauron?

Why were the people of Rhun and Harad allied with Sauron? Did they join him out of fear, or did Sauron say he would give them something if they joined him? I know the men of Dunland were angry at ...
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How strong were the Maiar, physically speaking?

Is there any mention of it anywhere? As strong as humans? As strong as orcs? Stronger, perhaps?
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Gandalf, Sauron and Saruman names and nicknames

Assuming Gandalf was the wisest of the maiar, why was Saruman known as the wise, rather than it being Gandalf? Also, what are the real names (maiar names) of all these three (Sauron, Saruman and ...
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Where in Middle Earth could mithril be found?

There is a Minecraft mod that adds Middle Earth during the time of Lord of the Rings. The modder usually tries to make it according to the books instead of making things up. Awhile ago they had a ...
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In which of Tolkien's works does the Witch-King of Angmar appear?

Where can I read all about the Witch-King of Angmar? Does he appear anywhere other than the Lord of the Rings trilogy and its appendices? The appendices talk about the Angmar vs Arnor war very ...