The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Caverns behind Helm's Deep in the northern White Mountains
Originally part of Gondor, but later fell within the realm of the Rohirrim
Associated with the Hornburg and the defences of Helm's Deep
Probably the source of the Deeping-stream1
Important peaks
Lay beneath the Thrihyrne in the White Mountains
Other names


About this entry:

  • Updated 22 December 2015
  • This entry is complete


The Glittering Caves

Map of Aglarond
"...gems and crystals and veins of precious ore glint in the polished walls; and the light glows through folded marbles, shell-like, translucent as the living hands of Queen Galadriel."
From Gimli's description of Aglarond
The Two Towers III 8 The Road to Isengard

The deep caverns that lay behind Helm's Deep in the White Mountains. When Gimli saw them during the War of the Ring, he was astonished by their beauty. After the War he led a party of Dwarves from Erebor to Aglarond, and became Lord of the Glittering Caves.

It seems that the glittering caverns originally gave their name to the entire defensive complex, and there are records of the fortress that guarded the deep being called 'Aglarond' during the time it was still under Gondorian control. With the coming of the Rohirrim, these names were changed. Eventually the fortress became known as the Hornburg, and after that time the name Aglarond came to be used simply for the caverns from which it had originally derived.



The source of the Deeping-stream is not described in detail, but the fact that it ran out through the ravine that emerged from the caves, and that the caves were filled with 'an everlasting music of water' (ibid) it is hard to reach any other conclusion than that the stream emerged from Aglarond.

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