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

Indexes:

About this entry:

  • Updated 14 December 2002
  • Updates planned: 2

Moon-letters

The secret runes of the Dwarves

"'Moon-letters are rune-letters, but you cannot see them,' said Elrond, 'not when you look straight at them.'"
The Hobbit 3, A Short Rest

A system of writing invented by Dwarves. Moon-letters were ordinary runes, but written in such a way that they could only be read when the light of the moon shone behind the writing. Some moon-letters could be read by any moonlight, but it was possible to make the writing even more secret. More sophisticated moon-letters could only be read by the same shape of moon, or at the same time of year, as when they were written.

Moon-letters were written with silver pens. The substance ithildin, made from mithril, reflected only starlight and moonlight, and it seems likely that ithildin, or something very similar, was used by the Dwarves to write their moon-letters.


See also...

Thrór’s Map

For acknowledgements and references, see the Disclaimer & Bibliography page.

Website services kindly sponsored by Axiom Software Ltd.

Original content © copyright Mark Fisher 2002. All rights reserved. For conditions of reuse, see the Site FAQ.