The Dread Helm is the translation of Gorthol, a name used by Túrin during the time he dwelt with Beleg Strongbow in the caverns of Amon Rûdh. It comes from the Dragon-helm of Dor-lómin that he wore when he hunted Orcs with Beleg, and the fame of his helm, and the bow of Beleg, gave that region for a time the name Dor-Cúarthol, the Land of Bow and Helm.
Because of its fame, the mighty Helm of Hador was to be Túrin's undoing. Through it, despite his alias, Morgoth was able to learn where Túrin could be found. Through the treachery of Mîm, Túrin was captured by Orcs, and carried off toward Angband.