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Mount Doom

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Across Gorgoroth by Ted Nasmith, prominently featuring Mount Doom.

Mount Doom, or Orodruin (S, pron. [oˈrodruɪn] in three syllables), was a volcano in Mordor.



When Sauron chose the land of Mordor as his dwelling-place in the Second Age, Orodruin was the reason for his choice. He "used the fire that welled there from the heart of the earth in his sorceries and his forging." The most famous result of his forging, and in fact the only one we know of for sure, was the One Ring. The mountain erupted in S.A. 3429 signalling Sauron's attack to Gondor and it took the name Amon Amarth "Mount Doom".

In T.A. 2954 Mount Doom reawakened and the last inhabitants of Ithilien terrified fled over Anduin.[1] From then on it erupted sporadically until the end of the Age.

Frodo's quest in the War of the Ring was to destroy the Ring at Mount Doom.


It stood alone in an empty plain, the Plateau of Gorgoroth and was connected to the Dark Tower by Sauron's Road. Rising about 4500 feet with its base about 3000 feet tall.[2] The Road approached the east side of the base at a causeway and then wound up like a snake; at that point the Road seemed damaged by the lava and re-repaired several times.[3]

Inside its cone, were the Sammath Naur leading to the Crack of Doom, a fiery chasm where the One Ring was forged.


Mount Doom is the Common Speech translation of Amon Amarth in Gondor.[4]

The name was given because the volcano was linked in ancient and little-understood prophecies with the final end of the Third Age, when the One Ring was found again.[4]


According to Karen Fonstad, the Mount Doom was obviously a stratovolcano, composited by alternating layers of ash and lava. Towering at only 4500ft, it was relatively short.[3]

Portrayal in Adaptations

2001-3: The Lord of the Rings: The Motion Picture Trilogy:

Mount Ngauruhoe was used as Mount Doom in some scenes. In long shots the mountain is either a large model or a CGI effect, or a combination. It was not permitted to film the summit of Ngauruhoe because it is sacred to the Maori of the region. However, some scenes which showed the slopes of Mount Doom were filmed on the actual slopes of Mount Ruapehu.


  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B
  2. Robert Foster, The Complete Guide to Middle-earth entry "Orodruin"
  3. 3.0 3.1 Karen Wynn Fonstad, The Atlas of Middle-earth, p. 146
  4. 4.0 4.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, "Nomenclature of The Lord of the Rings" in Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull (eds), The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion, pp. 768-9