From Lord of the Rings:

Saruman: Moria... You fear to go into those mines. The dwarves delved too greedily and too deep. You know what they awoke in the darkness of Khazad-dum... shadow and flame.

So, the dwarves awoke the Balrog beneath Moria. But why was the Balrog there in the first place?

  • 68
    Basement living is very trendy nowadays.
    – Valorum
    Feb 3, 2021 at 14:20
  • 5
    You said so yourself: it was awoken. Where else would you try and sleep for milllennia as a balrog? I know where I wouldn't sleep: In some random forest or field in Middle Earth.
    – DKNguyen
    Feb 3, 2021 at 14:59
  • 66
    Could be Balrogs everywhere if you dig deep enough. Fourth Age oil companies, beware! Feb 3, 2021 at 15:03
  • 15
    No book handy for a supported answer, but the idea is that the Balrog had fled the overthrow of Angband at the end of the First Age and was hiding. There's no particular reason why it was under Moria, other than a really unfortunate coincidence for the Dwarves of Khazad-Dûm.
    – chepner
    Feb 3, 2021 at 15:32
  • 11
    Just a note that the line quoted is from Jackson's FotR film and not present in the books. The question itself is still valid though.
    – J W
    Feb 4, 2021 at 8:40

1 Answer 1


Silmarillion, Chapter XXIV Of the Voyage of Eärendil and the War of Wrath:

The Balrogs were destroyed, save some few that fled and hid themselves in caverns inaccessible at the roots of the earth

  • 83
    Balrog: I'm safe, this cavern is inaccessible. - Dwarves: Hold my beer. Feb 4, 2021 at 15:22
  • 24
    @A.I.Breveleri More like: “Hold my axe.” Feb 4, 2021 at 16:03
  • 13
    @DavidFoerster although beer is relevant too for dwarves.
    – joH1
    Feb 4, 2021 at 18:28
  • 12
    I love all these comments , mods plz dont delete them !
    – Nigel Fds
    Feb 4, 2021 at 22:43
  • 23
    "Hold my ale". Feb 5, 2021 at 2:10

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