|Location||Eastern Eriador, running from the Misty Mountains down to Tharbad|
|Description||A rushing river|
The river Hoarwell, or Mitheithel was a river traversing eastern Eriador.
It began in the northern Misty Mountains west of the Rhimdath River and about 100 miles north of Rivendell. The Hoarwell flowed west past the Ettenmoors and then curved southward, skirting the western edge of the Trollshaws. Flowing under the Last Bridge on the East-West Road, it coursed southward until it was joined by the Bruinen or "Loudwater". The Hoarwell turned south-west until at Tharbad it met with the Glanduin, forming the fenland called Nîn-in-Eilph or "Swanfleet". Beyond this point the combined waters were called the Gwathló.
Around 1150 the Stoors came over the Redhorn Pass and settled in the Angle, the land between the Hoarwell and the Loudwater. When Angmar became powerful about 1300 these hobbits moved over the Hoarwell and settled near Bree.
On 11 October 3018, Glorfindel drove the Black Riders from the Last Bridge and left a beryl on the roadway to show that the path was safe. Two days later, after finding the elf-stone, Aragorn led the hobbits across the bridge.
Hoar means "grey" and well in English placenames usually has the meaning of "spring, source".[source?]
Other versions of the legendarium
In the 1937 version of The Hobbit the Hoarwell was described as a rushing red river coming from the mountains in front of the company. In the 1966 edition the adjective "red" was removed and the river came from the north in order to match the geography of The Lord of the Rings.
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, "Roast Mutton"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, "The West of Middle-earth at the End of the Third Age" [map]
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, "The Númenorean Kings", "Eriador, Arnor, and the Heirs of Isildur"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B, "The Third Age"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B, "The Great Years"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, "Flight to the Ford"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, "Nomenclature of The Lord of the Rings" in Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull (eds), The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion, p. 772