The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Dates
Dúnhere, the only named Lord of Harrowdale, was slain in the Battle of the Pelennor on 15 March III 30191
Location
Harrowdale ran northward through the White Mountains towards Edoras
Race
Division
Culture
Settlements
Presumably dwelt at Dunharrow2
Meaning
'Harrowdale' literally means 'temple valley', a reference to Dunharrow which stood in the dale
Title of
Dúnhere is the only named Lord

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About this entry:

  • Updated 13 September 2011
  • This entry is complete

Lord of Harrowdale

Chieftain of the valley of the Snowbourn

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Even after Rohan was founded, Dunlendings remained in many hidden places throughout the land. One of these was Harrowdale, the narrow valley of the Snowbourn River that cut through the White Mountains south of Edoras. Only in the time of Aldor the Old, some hundred years after the kingdom's foundation, were the last of Harrowdale's Dunlendings cleared from the valley.

Once the Dunlendings had been forced out, the valley was settled by the Rohirrim, and the ancient hold of Dunharrow was established as a refuge in the Mountains. The title of Lord of Harrowdale presumably dates back to these times, and it remained in place at least until the War of the Ring. The Lord during that War was Dúnhere, the nephew of Erkenbrand, who rode with King Théoden to the Battle of the Pelennor, but never returned to Harrowdale.


Notes

1

Though the only Lord of Harrowdale we know directly is Dúnhere, it seems implausible that he was the only one. Much more likely, the line went back some way into the history of Rohan. The earliest record we have of Dunharrow being used by the Rohirrim is in III 2759, when Fréaláf sheltered there during the Long Winter, though of course this does not directly indicate that a Lord of Harrowdale existed at that date.

2

We don't know for sure where the Lord of Harrowdale had his seat, but the secure refuge of Dunharrow seems the only viable option. There were at least two other settlements in the valley (Underharrow and Upbourn) but these seem too have been too small for a lord to reasonably use them as his base.

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