45

When the Company is forced to abandon their attempt to cross the Misty Mountains via the Redhorn Gate (the pass of Caradhras), Gandalf proposes they go "neither over the mountains, nor round them, but under them," via Moria. During the debate Aragorn remarks:

"I too once passed the Dirmrill Gate but though I also came out again, the memory is very evil. I do not wish to enter Moria a second time."

I haven't read much beyond the LOTR trilogy other than The Silmarillion. Does Tolkien ever describe Aragorn's first visit to Moria anywhere?

47

I'm forced to conclude that no, the details of his journey are never given.

In the very first draft of the chapter, the hobbit Trotter (who would eventually morph into Aragorn), says:

'Yes, I know of the mines,' said Trotter quietly. 'I went there once, and the memory is evil

History of Middle-earth VI The Return of the Shadow Chapter 24: "The Ring Goes South"

A margin note indicates that Trotter was captured there by the forces of Sauron, but no details are given.

This is the only other version of the story I can find in any writings, and you can see that it's not exactly helpful.

  • 2
    well at least there's a little something, a small reference to Aragorn's previous visit. "captured there..." sure whets the appetite for more. Ah well, Tolkien himself said "the book is too short" ... guess we can't have everything. :) thanks for your answer! – Ric Nov 4 '15 at 13:28
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    Hey Jason, I fixed your sup-sub tags around the citation. Now I don't have to unpack my microscope :-) – Matt Gutting Nov 4 '15 at 15:12
  • 1
    In the business they call this a Noodle Incident – corsiKa Nov 4 '15 at 16:06
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    @MattGutting Yeah, I noticed you have it in for my source formatting. I do have them sized down for a reason (visual distinction of lower-priority stuff from the main quote), but obviously readability is most important; how small is it right now? – Jason Baker Nov 4 '15 at 19:51
  • That's better :-) Still pretty small on my screen but better :-D – Matt Gutting Nov 4 '15 at 20:49

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