The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Dates
Built during the early history of Khazad-dûm; thought to be lost, but in fact survived into the Fourth Age
Location
Within Khazad-dûm, leading from the depths beneath Zirakzigil to Durin's Tower on its peak
Race
Division
Culture
Important peaks
Zirakzigil (also called Celebdil or the Silvertine)

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  • Updated 27 July 2008
  • Updates planned: 1

Endless Stair

The stair that led to Durin’s Tower

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Map of the Endless Stair

On the peak of Zirakzigil, also called Celebdil, the Mountains of Moria were overlooked by Durin's Tower, carved out of the rock itself. From there, a set of spiral steps descended into the mountain, and continued downwards without pause through all of Moria, into its deepest depths. This was the Endless Stair.

Gimli suggested that the Endless Stair had been lost to the Dwarves1, but the Balrog of Moria knew where it lay, and used it to escape from the pits beneath Khazad-dûm. He was pursued by Gandalf up to the Tower on the mountain's top, and there they fought the Battle of the Peak in which the Balrog was destroyed.


Notes

1

Gimli says of the Stair, 'Long has that been lost... Many have said that it was never made save in legend, but others say that it was destroyed.' (in The Two Towers III 5, The White Rider). Aside from Balin's doomed expedition, the whole of Khazad-dûm had been lost to the Dwarves for more than a thousand years at this point, but Gimli seems to be thinking the Stair in particular, rather than the whole of Moria.

It's unclear why he should single out the Endless Stair like this, but his wording implies that it had been forgotten by the Dwarves even before they were driven out of Khazad-dûm. Possibly it was made at the founding of the Dwarf-citadel by Durin the Deathless himself, and its secret forgotten by later generations of the Dwarves.

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