Tolkien Gateway

Old Forest Road

This article is about the Dwarf-road through Mirkwood. For the Dwarf-road of the First Age, see Dwarf-road of Beleriand.
Old Forest Road
General Information
Other namesRoad of the Dwarves (translation), Men-i-Naugrim
LocationRunning from the Misty Mountains through central Mirkwood to the Celduin
InhabitantsUsed by Dwarves

The Old Forest Road or Men-i-Naugrim was the main route through the great forest originally known as Greenwood the Great and latterly as Mirkwood.


[edit] Route

The road ran from the east gate of Moria north along the eastern side of the Misty Mountains over the upper course of the river Gladden to the lowest point where a bridge over the Anduin could be built and then straight east across the value of the Anduin and through Mirkwood forest to a bridge across the River Running and then north-east to the iron mines[1] in the Iron Hills[2]. A road that descended from the Pass of Imladris was also part of the Drawf Road.[3] The latitude of the eastern part of the road is halfway between the ancient Dwarven meeting-place at Mount Gundabad to the north, and Moria to the south.[4]

[edit] History

The stone-bridge over the Anduin and the first miles of the road through Greenwood were built by the Longbeard dwarves of Moria and the bridge over the River Running was built by their kin from the Iron Hills in the First Age. The road was completed during the Second Age when many dwarves emigrated from the Blue Mountains to Moria and to the Iron Hills.[1]

The road enjoyed a large amount of traffic until the War of the Elves and Sauron.[1]

Near the end of the Second Age the stone bridge across the Anduin was specially enlarged and strengthened to carry the armies of the Last Alliance.[5]

At the time of the Quest for Erebor the stone bridge over the Anduin had been lost and the river was crossed at the Old Ford. Beorn warned Thorin and Company that it was often used by Goblins and inside the forest, the road was overgrown and disused. At this time the road led to impassable marshes near the River Running where the paths had long been lost.[6]

[edit] Etymology

Men-i-Naugrim is a Sindarin name.[7] It means "Way of the Dwarves" or "Dwarf Road".[8] It is a compound of men ("road, way"), i ("the") and Naugrim ("dwarves").[7] In Note 14 in The Disaster of the Gladden Fields in Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-earth, The Old Forest Road is referred to twice as just the Forest Road.[9]

[edit] External links


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 J.R.R. Tolkien, Carl F. Hostetter (ed.), The Nature of Middle-earth, "Part Three. The World, its Lands, and its Inhabitants: XX. Note on the Dwarf Road"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Peoples of Middle-earth, "X. Of Dwarves and Men", "Notes", note 30
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, Index, entry Roads (2) (v)
  4. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, "The West of Middle-earth at the End of the Third Age" [map]
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, "The Disaster of the Gladden Fields", "Notes", Note 14
  6. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, "Queer Lodgings"
  7. 7.0 7.1 Paul Strack, "S. Men-i-Naugrim loc.", Eldamo - An Elvish Lexicon (accessed 9 March 2022)
  8. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, Index, entry Men-i-Naugrim
  9. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, "The Disaster of the Gladden Fields", "Notes", Note 14