The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Created during the Years of the Trees. None survived beyond the end of the First Age.
Awoke in various places throughout Middle-earth1
Title of
Durin the Deathless and six other unnamed Dwarves


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  • Updated 22 October 2008
  • Updates planned: 1

Fathers of the Dwarves

The seven founders of the race of Dwarves

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The seven progenitors of the Dwarven race, created by Aulë the Smith long years before the awakening of the Elves. They were granted life by Ilúvatar, and set to sleep in Middle-earth until the coming the Eldar. Durin the Deathless was the eldest of their number.



Though the Silmarillion is not specific about the awakening of the Dwarves, we can glimpse the reason why in the late essay Of Dwarves and Men (in The History of Middle-earth Volume 12, The Peoples of Middle-earth). Tolkien notes there that the Dwarves knew the details of their awakening, but kept them secret. It's logical, then, that the Elves who originated the Silmarillion couldn't have known where the Fathers of the Dwarves had awoken.

In the same essay, though, we are told where three of the seven Fathers awoke. The eldest and most famous of them, Durin the Deathless, awoke at Mount Gundabad in the northern Misty Mountains. Two more, the unnamed ancestors of the Firebeard and Broadbeam clans, were placed by Aulë in the Blue Mountains (and there presumably founded Nogrod and Belegost). The other Fathers awoke in pairs in two other locations, a thousand miles or more to the east of the Misty Mountains.

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