The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien


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  • Updated 20 August 2010
  • Updates planned: 2


The port of Minas Tirith

The port and docks of the city of Minas Tirith, built on a bend in the River Anduin, and used by river traffic from the southern regions of Gondor. It lay some four miles to the southeast of the city, protected by the defences of the great wall known as the Rammas Echor1. The docks were so placed that there was a clear view of the southern river for many leagues, allowing defenders to see approaching ships long before they arrived at port.

During the War of the Ring, it was at the Harlond that Aragorn landed with his fleet of captured Corsair vessels, reinforcing the beleaguered defenders of Minas Tirith. After the victory in the Battle of the Pelennor, the Harlond continued to be busy, as more ships from the southern lands carried new troops to Minas Tirith.



Exactly how the docks related to the wall is not entirely clear. The text of The Lord of the Rings (The Return of the King V 1) tells us that the wall ran along the edge of the river at this point, and that the Harlond was 'beneath' it. In his unpublished index, Tolkien also states that the Harlond was 'within' the wall. Of course the docks and quays on the river must themselves have been outside the wall, so presumably some kind of gateway led from the landings into the port itself, though the exact arrangement is nowhere described.

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