Quest of the Ring
- "For Frodo the Halfling, it is said, at the bidding of Mithrandir took on himself the burden, and alone with his servant he passed through peril and darkness and came at last in Sauron's despite even to Mount Doom; and there into the Fire where it was wrought he cast the Great Ring of Power, and so at last it was unmade and its evil consumed."
- ― Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age
The Quest of the Ring, also known as the Quest for Mount Doom, was the quest taken by the members of the Fellowship of the Ring to destroy the One Ring of Sauron to rid the evil from Middle-earth during the Third Age. It forms the center of the story of The Lord of the Rings.
Though its necessity was obvious to many beforehand, the Quest was initiated during the Council of Elrond. Elrond appointed eight members to accompany the ring-bearer Frodo Baggins on his difficult journey: Gandalf, Aragorn, Legolas, Gimli, Boromir, Sam, Merry and Pippin. Merry and Pippin were not chosen, but went on their own consent. After spending the winter in Rivendell, the Company set off on the arduous journey that lay ahead.
They set off for Eregion, and attempted to cross the Misty Mountains at the Redhorn Pass. Stopped by snow, the Fellowship sought a different path: the long dark of Moria. There, Gandalf fell in battle with Durin's Bane.
The remaining eight members of the Fellowship, now led by Aragorn, entered Lothlórien, where they spent a month in the care of Celeborn and Galadriel. They departed by swift Elven boats, and headed South over the Anduin.
And so they came to Nen Hithoel and the Emyn Muil, where Boromir was slain, and the Fellowship was broken. Frodo and Sam crossed the river to the east and, after much toil, escaped the hills. With the help of Gollum, they crossed the Dead Marshes, and came in sight of the Black Gate. Unable to enter Mordor, they went to the pass of Cirith Ungol, but were divided by the treachery of Gollum. Frodo was stung by Shelob and taken prisoner. At the Tower of Cirith Ungol, he was stripped of his effects, but Sam managed to free him. The Ring had, at this stage, been taken by Sam, for safe-keeping.