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"I shan't call it the end, till we've cleared up the mess." — Sam
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Melkor reaching Arda by Šárka Škorpíková
"Lost and forgotten be, darker than the darkness,
Where gates stand forever shut, till the World is mended
Tom Bombadil, The Fellowship of the Ring, "Fog on the Barrow-downs"

The Outer Void, or the Timeless Void, was a term used in various ways.


Cosmologically, the Void is the uninhabited space outside Time and Creation, the absence of the Flame Imperishable. It is told that Melkor used to wander in the Void to look in vain for the Flame Imperishable.[1]

The Timeless Halls of Ilúvatar are apart from the Void; is created amidst the Void but is not a part of it.[1]

After his defeat in the War of Wrath, Morgoth was cast out into the Timeless Void "through the Door of Night beyond the Walls of the World",[2] but legends predict that he will return to the World and cause its End. The Void thus in that context refers to the vast distant empty spaces of . This was often confused by Elves and Men with the Void that existed before the creation of .[3]

Following his apparent utter defeat in the War of the Ring, Sauron's weakened spirit was left bound to the confines of the world, having stepped on the same path to powerlessness as Morgoth had in his banishment to the Void .[4]

It is also possible Gandalf's spirit entered the Void after his battle with the Balrog in Moria, as he "passed out of thought and time."[5]

Other names

The Void was also known as the Outer Dark (or the Outer Darkness), the Everlasting Dark, the Ancient Darkness. Qenya names were Avakúma, Oiakúma[6], and Kúma.[7][8]


Middle-earth Cosmology
 Constellations  Anarríma · Durin's Crown · Menelmacar · Remmirath · Soronúmë · Telumendil · Valacirca · Wilwarin
Stars  Alcarinquë · Borgil · Carnil · Elemmírë · Helluin · Luinil · Lumbar · Morwinyon · Nénar · Star of Eärendil · Til 
The Airs  Aiwenórë · Fanyamar · Ilmen · Menel · Vaiya · Veil of Arda · Vista
Narsilion  Arien · Moon (Isil, Ithil, Rána) · Sun (Anar, Anor, Vása) · Tilion
See also  Abyss · Arda · Circles of the World · · Timeless Halls · Two Lamps · Two Trees · Void