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Surprise Attack on Umbar

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This article describes a concept which is mentioned in J.R.R. Tolkien's works, but was never given a definite name.
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Surprise Attack on Umbar
John Howe - Corsairs of Umbar.jpg
Conflict: Corsair Wars
Date: Unknown, but sometime between T.A. 2957 and T.A. 2980
Place: The Haven of Umbar
Outcome: Victory for Gondorian naval forces, Destruction of much of the Corsair Navy

Gondorian Navy

Corsairs of Umbar


45px Thorongil

45px Captain of Umbar


Unknown, less than 100 ships, several hundreds raiders and sailors

Unknown, est. thousands of Corsair soldiers and sailors, hundreds of ships


Unknown, light

Unknown, many ships and an est. hundreds of sailors

The Surprise Attack on Umbar was a battle that took place sometime between 2957-2980 TA.


Prelude to the Battle

During the reign of Ecthelion II, Steward of Gondor the realm Umbar was a mighty seafaring threat to the Southern Fiefs of Gondor. The Corsairs attacked trade ships, fishing vessels, and Gondorian Navy ships, and soon possibly the Gondorian coast. The Steward's most trusted counselor was a man the people called Thorongil. He was very concerned about what they Corsairs could do to the coasts, and voiced his worries often to Ecthelion. Finally Ecthelion gave permission to take on this threat.

The Attack

When all was prepared Thorongil lead his small naval task force into the Gulf of Umbar to the Havens, and catching the Corsairs unprepared and unaware, they burned and destroyed many of their ships. During the battle Thorongil slew the Captain of Umbar on the quays, and then withdrew his forces with little loss.


Thanks to the brilliance of Thorongil, the threat of Umbar was definitely deterred. Many of their ships were destroyed along with many of their sailors. Thorongil would have received much praise and honor for his victory, but when they reached Pelargir he would not return to Minas Tirith for his awards. He sent a message of farewell to Ecthelion, saying: "Other tasks now call me, lord, and much time and many perils must pass, ere I come again to Gondor, if that be my fate." Though no one could guess what those tasks could be, or by whom he was summoned, they did know where went. For he took a boat and crossed the Anduin river, and there he said farewell to his companions and went on alone; and when he was last seen he was headed toward the Mountains of Shadow.