The Treason of Isengard

From Tolkien Gateway
The name Isengard refers to more than one character, item or concept. For a list of other meanings, see Isengard (disambiguation).
The Treason of Isengard
Treason of Isengard 1989.png
AuthorJ.R.R. Tolkien
EditorChristopher Tolkien
PublisherUnwin Hyman (UK)
Houghton Mifflin (US)
Released7 September 1989 (UK)
30 November 1989 (US)
FormatHardcover; paperback
Preceded byThe Return of the Shadow (1988)
Followed byThe War of the Ring (1990)

The Treason of Isengard, published in 1989, is the seventh volume of Christopher Tolkien's 12-volume book series, The History of Middle-earth, in which he analyzes the unpublished manuscripts of J.R.R. Tolkien.

It is also the second volume of The History of The Lord of the Rings, which documents the writing process of The Lord of the Rings.

This book covers part of The Fellowship of the Ring and part of The Two Towers. It continues to the meeting with Théoden king of Rohan, and includes the invention and evolution of Lothlórien and Galadriel; plans for Frodo and Sam's progress to Mordor; the invention and evolution of Treebeard, the Ents, and Fangorn; discussions of the original map of Middle-earth at the end of the Third Age; and of the evolution of Cirth in an appendix.

The title The Treason of Isengard was the original title for Book III of TLotR, eventually unused.

Contents[edit | edit source]

  • Foreword
  • I. "Gandalf's Delay"
  • II. "The Fourth Phase (1): From Hobbiton to Bree"
  • III. "The Fourth Phase (2): From Bree to the Ford of Rivendell"
  • IV. "Of Hamilcar, Gandalf, and Saruman"
  • V. "Bilbo's Song at Rivendell: Errantry and Eärendillinwë"
  • VI. "The Council of Elrond (1)"
  • VII. "The Council of Elrond (2)"
  • VIII. "The Ring Goes South"
  • IX. "The Mines of Moria (1): The Lord of Moria"
  • X. "The Mines of Moria (2): The Bridge"
  • XI. "The Story Foreseen from Moria"
  • XII. "Lothlórien"
  • XIII. "Galadriel"
  • XIV. "Farewell to Lórien"
  • XV. "The First Map of The Lord of the Rings"
  • XVI. "The Story Foreseen from Lórien"
  • XVII. "The Great River"
  • XVIII. "The Breaking of the Fellowship"
  • XIX. "The Departure of Boromir"
  • XX. "The Riders of Rohan"
  • XXI. "The Uruk-hai"
  • XXII. "Treebeard"
  • XXIII. "Notes on Various Topics"
  • XXIV. "The White Rider"
  • XXV. "The Story Foreseen from Fangorn"
  • XXVI. "The King of the Golden Hall"
  • Appendix on Runes
  • Index

Inscriptions[edit | edit source]

There is an inscription in the Tengwar characters in the first pages of every History of Middle-earth volume, written by Christopher Tolkien and describing the contents of the book. The inscription in Book VII reads:

"In The Treason of Isengard the story of the Fellowship of the Ring is traced from Rivendell through Moria and the Land of Lothlórien to the time of its ending at Salembel beside Anduin the Great river, then is told of the return of Gandalf Mithrandir, of the meeting of the hobbits with Fangorn, and of the war upon the Riders of Rohan by the traitor Saruman."

From the publisher[edit | edit source]

The second part of The History of The Lord of the Rings, an enthralling account of the writing of the Book of the Century which contains many additional scenes and includes the unpublished Epilogue in its entirety.

The Treason of Isengard continues the account of the creation of The Lord of the Rings started in the earlier volume, The Return of the Shadow. It traces the great expansion of the tale into new lands and new peoples south and east of the Misty Mountains: the emergence of Lothlórien, of Ents, of the Riders of Rohan, and of Saruman the White in the fortress of Isengard.
In brief outlines and penciled drafts dashed down on scraps of paper are seen the first entry of Galadriel, the earliest ideas of the history of Gondor, and the original meeting of Aragorn and Éowyn, its significance destined to be wholly transformed.

The book also contains a full account of the original map which was to be the basis of the emerging geography of Middle-earth.

Publication history and gallery[edit | edit source]

UK editions
1989 hardcover  
1991 hardcover  
1993 paperback  
1993 paperback 2nd impression  
2002 & 2015 paperback  
2010 hardcover  
2024 paperback  

External links[edit | edit source]

A content guide for this volume at

The History of Middle-earth series
i.The Book of Lost Tales: Part One · ii.The Book of Lost Tales: Part Two · iii.The Lays of Beleriand ·
iv.The Shaping of Middle-earth · v.The Lost Road and Other Writings · vi.The Return of the Shadow ·
vii.The Treason of Isengard · viii.The War of the Ring · ix.Sauron Defeated ·
x.Morgoth's Ring · xi.The War of the Jewels · xii.The Peoples of Middle-earth · (Index)
A J.R.R. Tolkien book guide
Books by or mainly by Tolkien
On Arda Authored by
J.R.R. Tolkien
The Hobbit · The Lord of the Rings
(i.The Fellowship of the Ring · ii.The Two Towers · iii.The Return of the King) ·
The Adventures of Tom Bombadil · The Road Goes Ever On · Bilbo's Last Song
Edited by Christopher Tolkien The Silmarillion · Unfinished Tales · The History of Middle-earth series
(i.The Book of Lost Tales: Part One · ii.The Book of Lost Tales: Part Two · iii.The Lays of Beleriand · iv.The Shaping of Middle-earth · v.The Lost Road and Other Writings · vi.The Return of the Shadow · vii.The Treason of Isengard · viii.The War of the Ring · ix.Sauron Defeated · x.Morgoth's Ring · xi.The War of the Jewels · xii.The Peoples of Middle-earth · Index) ·
The Children of Húrin · Beren and Lúthien · The Fall of Gondolin
Edited by others The Annotated Hobbit · The History of The Hobbit · The Nature of Middle-earth · The Fall of Númenor
Not on Arda Short stories
and others
Leaf by Niggle · Farmer Giles of Ham · Smith of Wootton Major · Letters from Father Christmas ·
Mr. Bliss · Roverandom · Tree and Leaf (compilation) · Tales from the Perilous Realm (compilation)
Fictional works The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún · The Fall of Arthur · The Story of Kullervo · The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun
Translations and academic works Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Pearl, and Sir Orfeo · The Old English Exodus · Finn and Hengest ·
The Monsters and the Critics, and Other Essays · Beowulf and the Critics · Tolkien On Fairy-stories ·
Beowulf: A Translation and Commentary · A Secret Vice · The Battle of Maldon
Letters & poems The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien · The Collected Poems of J.R.R. Tolkien
academic works
A Middle English Vocabulary · Sir Gawain and the Green Knight · Ancrene Wisse
Books by other authors
Books on Arda The Complete Guide to Middle-earth · The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion ·
The Maps of Middle-earth
Tolkien biographies J.R.R. Tolkien: A Biography · The Inklings · Tolkien and the Great War
Scholarly books The Road to Middle-earth · The Keys of Middle-earth · The J.R.R. Tolkien Companion and Guide ·
The Ring of Words · A Companion to J.R.R. Tolkien · Tolkien's Lost Chaucer · Tolkien's Library · Tolkien on Chaucer, 1913-1959
Scholarly journals Tolkien Studies · (The Chronology)
Other works by Tolkien
Linguistic journals Vinyar Tengwar various issues · Parma Eldalamberon issue 11-22
Collections of artwork
and manuscripts
Pictures by J.R.R. Tolkien · J.R.R. Tolkien: Life and Legend · J.R.R. Tolkien: Artist and Illustrator ·
The Art of The Hobbit · The Art of The Lord of the Rings · Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth ·
Tolkien: Treasures · J.R.R. Tolkien: The Art of the Manuscript
This list is only a selection, for a fuller bibliography of Tolkien see here or here. See also a timeline and an index.