The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
I 116 - I 510 (endured 394 years)
North of Beleriand, within the Encircling Mountains
Other names


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  • Updated 27 May 2015
  • This entry is complete

Hidden City

A name for Gondolin

Encyclopedia of Arda Timeline
Years of the Trees First Age Second Age Third Age Fourth Age and Beyond
Map of the Hidden City

When Turgon son of Fingolfin came to Middle-earth with the Exiles, he at first settled in the land of Nevrast on the coast, establishing a seat at Vinyamar beneath Mount Taras. A vision from Ulmo guided him inland, where he found a hidden tunnel through the mountains that led him to Tumladen, a wide green plain surrounded on all sides by the Echoriath, the Encircling Mountains.

In the middle of the plain of Tumladen stood a rocky hill, Amon Gwareth, and on that hill Turgon set about building a new city, concealed from the eyes of Morgoth by the mountains. After decades of work, the city was finished, and Turgon summoned all his people from Nevrast to find a new home there. The city had many names, but it was known most famously as the Hidden City of Gondolin.

Completed in I 116, the Hidden City remained concealed from friend and foe alike for centuries, and survived longer against Morgoth than any of the other Elf-realms of Beleriand. It was not until the sixth century of the First Age that its location was betrayed by Maeglin, and in I 510 Morgoth's forces attacked and overwhelmed it. A small band of survivors escaped the sack, led by Turgon's daughter Idril, Tuor, and their young son Eärendil.

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