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Attack on Dol Guldur

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Attack on Dol Guldur
Date: T.A. 2941
Place: Dol Guldur
Outcome: Victory for the White Council

The White Council

Forces of Sauron


The White Council which was no more than 20 Elves and Wizards. Possibly the Elves of Lórien, and Rivendell, which could not have numbered no more than a few thousand

Orcs from Dol Guldur, probably trolls, and other evil creatures (est.) 10,000[source?]


Unknown, apparently light[source?]

Unknown, possibly considerable[source?]

The Attack on Dol Guldur was an expedition launched by the White Council in 2941 of the Third Age against the fortress of Dol Guldur in southern Mirkwood.




Dol Guldur was established after Third Age 1000 following Sauron's return to Middle-earth, although his identity was hidden and was known as the Necromancer. Dol Guldur was originally known as Amon Lanc ("Bald Hill"), and had been the capital of Oropher's Silvan Elves, who had departed north to the Dark Mountains (later known as the Mountains of Mirkwood). After Sauron took over Amon Lanc, Thranduil, son of Oropher, led his people over the Forest River, where they remained.

The Council of the Wise long feared the Necromancer might indeed be Sauron, and in 2063 Gandalf went to Dol Guldur, and Sauron, not yet powerful, fled to the East. In 2460 Sauron returned there, just as the One Ring was found by Sméagol. However, the Ring disappeared with Sméagol under the Misty Mountains.

In 2845 Thráin II, King of Durin's folk-in-exile and holder of the last of the Seven Rings of the Dwarves, was imprisoned in Dol Guldur's dungeons. In 2850 Gandalf again entered fortress, finding the dying Thráin, and Gandalf was entrusted with the map and key to give to Thorin, although Thráin could not tell him his own or his son's name before he died. Gandalf confirmed Sauron was the master of Dol Guldur at that time.

Gandalf returned to the White Council and urged an attack on Dol Guldur, but was overruled by Saruman, who had begun searching for the One Ring in the area by then. In 2941 Saruman finally agreed to an attack, which occurred at the same time as the Quest of Erebor. This was carefully planned by Gandalf, so that Sauron and Smaug could not assist each other.

The Battle

Not much is known of the actual battle (if this was simply a duel between great powers, or if it involved the use of armies of any kind) besides that the White Council marched against the great fortress, and that Sauron fled to Mordor, his plans now ready.


It is unclear if the Council actually ever entered the fortress because Dol Guldur remained staffed by the lieutenant of Barad-dûr, and later Khamûl until the fortress's destruction during the War of the Ring.

With victory theirs, Gandalf immediately left for Erebor, where he would take part in the Battle of Five Armies.

See also