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J.R.R. Tolkien - The Three Trolls are turned to Stone (Colored by H.E. Riddett).jpg
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Trolls were large monsters of limited intellect.



Morgoth created Trolls before the First Age. Their exact origins are unknown, though it is stated by Treebeard that Trolls were "made in mockery of" Ents, similar to the way that Orcs were bred from captured and tormented Elves.

Trolls were strong and vicious, but stupid creatures, and they turned to stone in sunlight. Many Trolls died in the War of Wrath, but some survived and joined the forces of Sauron, the greatest surviving servant of Morgoth. In the Second Age and Third Age, Trolls were among Sauron's most dangerous warriors. In the Third Age, Sauron created the Olog-hai, which were more powerful than earlier breeds of Trolls. While most Trolls cannot bear exposure to sunlight without turning to stone, the Olog-hai apparently could; this attribute is mentioned in The Return of the King as making them particularly dangerous. During the War of the Ring, Sauron used Olog-hai in the Siege of Gondor and Battle of the Pelennor Fields. In the subsequent Battle at the Black Gate, the hobbit Peregrin Took killed a large Olog-hai troll. As a result of Sauron's ring being destroyed, the Black Gate and the rest of Mordor collapsed to ruin during that battle. Most of the Trolls present at the battle were killed, with a very few escaping.

Kinds of Trolls


Trolls were originally a part of the Norse mythology (as a negative synonym for jötunn, "giants") and Scandinavian folklore (as ugly, large creatures of remote wildlife areas).

Other versions of the legendarium

In an early chart of different creatures, trolls are given the Qenya name maulir. Patrick H. Wynne and Christopher Gilson have suggested that maulir is posibly related to Qenya maule ("crying, weeping"), thus perhaps "referring to cries made by these monsters or to the weeping of their victims".[1]

Other fiction

In Sir Gawain and the Green Knight are mentioned the "wood-trolls" (translated by J.R.R. Tolkien from the manuscript word wodwos).[2]

Portrayal in adaptations

Trolls in adaptations


1966: The Hobbit (1966 film):

The three trolls' position in the narrative was taken by creatures called "Groans".[3] They had wooden, bark-like skin and turned into dead trees when exposed to sunlight.


2011: The Lord of the Rings: War in the North:

Compared to other enemies, Trolls are much stronger. Trolls first appear in Fornost, where one traps Eradan, Andriel and Farin.[4] Another troll appears at the end of the level, where Eradan, Andriel and Farin have to protect Elladan and Elrohir. When this Troll is killed, the player is able to enter the Citadel to confront Tharzog and Agandaûr.[5]


  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, "Early Qenya and The Valmaric Script", in Parma Eldalamberon XIV (edited by Carl F. Hostetter, Christopher Gilson, Arden R. Smith, Patrick H. Wynne, and Bill Welden), pp. 7, 9
  2. Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull (eds), The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion, p. 555
  3. Gene Deitch, "Comment 5311" dated 25 July 2012, genedeitchcredits (accessed 17 October 2012)
  4. The Lord of the Rings: War in the North, Chapter 1: Fornost, Outer Wards
  5. The Lord of the Rings: War in the North, Chapter 1: Fornost, The Citadel