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Last Alliance of Elves and Men

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"The Last Alliance" by Jenny Dolfen
Last Alliance of Elves and Men
FoundedS.A. 3430
FounderGil-galad and Elendil
PurposePrevent conquest by Sauron
MembersDúnedain; Elves of Lindon, Rivendell, Mirkwood, and Lothlórien; Dwarves of Khazad-dûm; birds and beasts[1]
LocationImladris, drawn from all parts of northwestern Middle-earth
DisbandedS.A. 3441
Notable forDefeating Sauron

The Last Alliance of Elves and Men was formed in 3430 of the Second Age in response to the threat of conquest by the Dark Lord Sauron.[2]


Sauron had been contending with the Elves for mastery of Middle-earth for over 1200 years. Fearing the establishment of the powerful kingdoms in exile — Arnor and Gondor — by his hated enemies, the Dúnedain, Sauron launched a pre-emptive attack on Gondor in S.A. 3429.

Isildur left Minas Ithil for the north to meet his father and High King of the Dúnedain Elendil, whilst Anárion, Elendil's younger son, defended Osgiliath against the hosts of Mordor.[2]

In response, Elendil formed an alliance with Gil-galad, the High King of the Noldor, to repel Sauron's assault in S.A. 3430.[2] Durin's Folk also joined. It is said that Elendil bound the Alliance with an oath and invoked the name of Eru to witness it.[3] Eru's name was very rarely invoked in oaths, and among the Númenóreans it was held that only the King could call upon Him. This would happen again only thousands of years later during the Oath of Cirion.[3]

It is said that the hosts of Gil-galad joined Elendil at Amon Sûl[4] and marched towards Imladris in S.A. 3431 where they camped for three years,[2] forging armour and making plans.[source?]

Last Alliance by Angel Falto

Finally in S.A. 3434 the armies crossed the Misty Mountains at various locations; Gil-galad and Isildur crossed the Pass of Imladris and the Pass of Caradhras, and their hosts were so large that the Orcs of Mordor sent by Sauron to harry them hid themselves instead.[5] Their forces were strengthened in the Vales of Anduin by Elves from Lothlórien and Greenwood the Great under the command of Oropher and Amdír and by the Dwarves of Khazad-dûm.

When Sauron learned of their advance, he burned the former Gardens of the Entwives to hinder them down the Anduin.[6]

Soon they reached Dagorlad where they met and defeated Sauron's army in the Battle of Dagorlad after months of fierce fighting. Sauron retreated, and the Alliance breached the Morannon into Mordor, marching to besiege the Dark Lord's fortress of Barad-dûr. The siege lasted for seven years, during which the Alliance sustained heavy losses; among others, Anárion was slain. It culminated in Sauron leaving his fortress and breaking the siege himself. Sauron's last sortie pushed the army of the Alliance back to the slopes of Orodruin.[2]

At the last stage of the Siege of Barad-dûr, Sauron slew Gil-galad and Elendil in single combat, but was himself defeated.[2] Isildur cut the Ring from Sauron's finger.[7] Sauron's body died and his spirit fled. Without the power of the One Ring, Sauron could not take form again in Middle-earth for a thousand years.

With the victory over Sauron and the death of Gil-galad and Elendil, the Last Alliance was dissolved. The remaining Númenóreans resettled their kingdoms.


See also