From Tolkien Gateway
Rob Alexander - Ettenmoors.jpg
"Ettenmoors" by Rob Alexander
General Information
Other namesEttendales, Troll-fells
LocationEastern Eriador, north of the Trollshaws
DescriptionHighland region infested with Trolls
InhabitantsTrolls, possibly Orcs
GalleryImages of Ettenmoors

The Ettenmoors were a mountainous, wild, and untamed land that lay north of Rivendell.

Also called the troll-fells,[1] the region was likely infested with Trolls.

The Ettenmoors included the land of the Ettendales, which consisted of valleys reaching into the foothills of the Misty Mountains.[2]

It is speculated that Mount Gram, from where a host of Orcs attacked the Shire, was located in the Ettenmoors.[3]

History[edit | edit source]

Since the Elder Days, Trolls concentrated especially around the Ettermoors, and they increased during the rule of Angmar, that was founded in the north.[4]

It was here that in T.A. 1975 the Witch-king of Angmar fled after his defeat in the Battle of Fornost.[5] After the fall of the realm, the Trolls retreated to the east of the Misty Mountains but returned in the 28th century and even expanded westwards.[4] Chieftain Arador was slain by trolls in this area[6] in 2930.[7]

Around November T.A. 3018, scouts from Rivendell investigated the Ettenmoors for any activities concerning the servants of Sauron, but they came with no warning news.[8]

Etymology[edit | edit source]

See also: etten

The name Ettenmoors consists of etten and moor ("high barren land").[9]

"Fells" translates to hills or moorland, thus "troll-fells" were hills in which trolls lived.[9]

Other versions of the legendarium[edit | edit source]

In the "first phase" of The Fellowship of the Ring, map sketches label the source of Hoarwell as Dimrill Dale(s), but when the name was displaced, the region was renamed Hoardale, changed to "Entish Dales" or "Entish Lands". This was before J.R.R. Tolkien conceived the Ents of The Two Towers and the adjective "entish" directly refers to Old English eōten "giant"[10] (see also Etymology section).

Later Tolkien decided to change it into "Trollfells" (capitalized without a hyphen): he wrote on a map: "Alter Entish Lands to [Trollfells > Bergrisland >] Ettenmoor". This is also the first mention of Ettenmoor(s) in the legendarium.[11]

Inspiration[edit | edit source]

The name Ettenmoors is similar to the land of Ettinsmoor of Narnia by C.S. Lewis. In The Silver Chair Lewis mentions that it is inhabited by Ettins, giants who often play the game of Cockshies, throwing rocks at a gorge, much like the stone giants in The Hobbit.

Portrayal in adaptations[edit | edit source]

2002-5: The Lord of the Rings Roleplaying Game:

The Ettenmoors are the homeland of the Ettens who resemble Hill-trolls, but they possess "not one but two long heads".[12]
Map of the Ettenmoors from The Lord of the Rings Online

2007: The Lord of the Rings Online:

The Ettenmoors is the region where Player vs Monster Player play takes place, pitting the "Army of Angmar" against the "Coldfells Army" of the Free Peoples. The two factions each have a home base which cannot be entered by the opposing side and a secondary base which can be assailed but not captured. Between them are five major control points: the keeps of "Lugazag", "Tirith Rhaw", and "Tol Ascarnen", the "Isendeep Mine", and "Grimwood Lumber Camp"; as well as several smaller outposts, all of which can be captured by either side.
Other sites of interest include the Hobbit village "Hoarhallow", its Goblin counterpart, "Grothum", as well as dens of bears, eagles, drakes, Wargs, and other beasts that align with one side or are hostile to all.

See also[edit | edit source]


  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, "Flight to the Ford"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, "Unfinished index for The Lord of the Rings", in Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull (eds), The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion, p. 188
  3. Karen Wynn Fonstad (1991), The Atlas of Middle-earth, pp. 75, 80
  4. 4.0 4.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, Carl F. Hostetter (ed.), The Nature of Middle-earth, "Part Three. The World, its Lands, and its Inhabitants: XVII. Silvan Elves and Silvan Elvish"
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B, "The Third Age"
  6. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, "The Númenorean Kings", "The Tale of Aragorn and Arwen"
  7. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, "The Númenorean Kings", "The Realms in Exile", "The Northern Line: Heirs of Isildur"
  8. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, "The Ring Goes South"
  9. 9.0 9.1 Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull (eds), The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion, p. 183
  10. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Return of the Shadow, "The First Phase: XI. From Weathertop to the Ford, Note on the Entish Lands"
  11. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Treason of Isengard, "XV. The First Map of The Lord of the Rings", p. 306
  12. Scott Bennie, Mike Mearls, Steve Miller, Aaron Rosenberg, Chris Seeman, Owen Seyler, and George Strayton (2003), Fell Beasts and Wondrous Magic