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Nargothrond was the stronghold built by Finrod Felagund to dwell in, delved into the banks of the river Narog in Beleriand. This was the base of Felagund's realm that included the lands to the north (the Talath Dirnen or Guarded Plain) and surrounding.
Inspired by Menegroth in Doriath, and seeking a hidden place from which to be safe from the forces of Morgoth, Finrod established it in the early years of the First Age, in the Caverns of Narog beneath the forested hills of Taur-en-Faroth on the western bank of Narog. He was aided by the Dwarves of the Ered Luin, who also made for him the Nauglamír, the Necklace of the Dwarves.
However, Finrod was not the first to delve in those caves: it had first been inhabited by the Petty-dwarves before they were driven out.
Days of Power
Finrod ruled Nargothrond until he joined Beren in his quest for the Silmaril and gave it to Orodreth. However, since the Dagor Bragollach the sons of Fëanor, Celegorm and Curufin were defeated and had to retreat to Nargothrond, where they were conceived as one of them, but though the city grew stronger because of this, the influence of the sons of Feänor became higher. Celegorm and Curufin lived in Nargothrond at the time Finrod departed Nargothrond with Beren and were more powerful than Orodreth until Finrod's death was reported, at which time they were exiled.
(Main article: Fall of Nargothrond)
Túrin Turambar later came to Nargothrond and became one of its chief fighters, but he also persuaded the people to fight openly against Morgoth (the bridge was built at this time), which eventually led to its sack by the army of the dragon Glaurung.
Glaurung stayed there for about five more years guarding his stolen horde until he went Northeast to Brethil to assail Turin, and after being killed by him at Cabed-en-Aras he never returned. Then, Mim the Petty Dwarf settled there reclaiming his peoples ancient home until he was killed by Húrin. The realm remained deserted for the rest of the first age until the War of Wrath when it went down with the rest of the Beleriand.
From its first conception, the name Nargothrond means "Underground fortress on the river Narog". Its Petty-dwarvish name was Nulukkhizdîn (erronously spelled Nulukkizdîn in the published works). However, in his later life, Tolkien devised the Dwarvish name Narukathan instead, to which the Elves suffixed -rond, "vaulted dome".