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Black Gate

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The Black Gate
John Howe - The Black Gates.jpg
"The Black Gates" by John Howe
General Information
Other namesMorannon (S)
LocationMeeting of Udûn and Dagorlad, between Ered Lithui and Ephel Dúath
DescriptionIron wall containing arched two-doored entrance[1][2]
People and History
InhabitantsOriginally Gondorians; later orcs[1]
Createdc. S.A. 1600[3]
Destroyed25 March, T.A. 3019
GalleryImages of the Black Gate

The Black Gate of Mordor (Sindarin: Morannon) was originally a gate built by Sauron, the Dark Lord of Mordor, to prevent invasion through the Pass of Cirith Gorgor, the gap between the Ered Lithui and the Ephel Dúath.


It was probably built with the power of the One Ring, like the Barad-dûr. After Sauron's fall, it became a Númenorean garrison. Backed up on the other side by the Isenmouthe, and protected by the castle of Durthang to the west, it was redesigned to keep all of Mordor's evil inside, shielding the outside from it - and it from the outside. The reconstruction of Minas Ithil, Tower of the Rising Moon, as well as the construction of Cirith Ungol were also done for the same purpose.

However, during the aftermath of the Kin-strife in Gondor the watchfulness of the guards in these strongholds relaxed. Thus the Ringwraiths and Orcs re-entered Mordor, eventually overrunning the garrisons and inhabiting them for themselves. It was at this time that the tower of Minas Ithil was taken by the Nazgûl, having its name changed to Minas Morgul, Tower of Sorcery.

During the War of the Ring, the Army of the West, numbering under 6,000 men,[2] arrived at the Black Gate with the intention of drawing the Eye of Sauron away from Mount Doom, to allow Frodo the Ringbearer to cast the One Ring into the Crack of Doom within it. This they achieved, and the Ring was destroyed in the fires of Mount Doom, following which the Black Gate and the Towers of the Teeth immediately collapsed.

Portrayal in adaptations

The Black Gate in adaptations
The Black Gate in The Lord of the Rings Online  

2001-03: The Lord of the Rings (film series):

The Black Gate is present in the film series. in the second film is appears as a double gate, operated by Trolls, where Frodo and Sam attempt to go through the Gate until convinced by Gollum not to do so. In the third film the Black Gate is a focal point of the Battle of the Morannon, and after the destruction of the One Ring the Black Gate and the Towers of the Teeth are seen to collapse.

2017: The Lord of the Rings Online:

The Black Gate appears in the game as the location of a number of quests in the lead up to the defeat of Sauron.


  1. 1.0 1.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Two Towers, "The Black Gate is Closed"
  2. 2.0 2.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Black Gate Opens"
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Silmarillion, "Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age"