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Forming the western and southern borders of Mordor
Primarily occupied by Orcs, though guarded by Men for much of the earlier Third Age
The rivers Harnen and Poros, and the stream known as the Morgulduin, all had their sources in these mountains, as well as three other unnamed streams and rivers
Other names


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  • Updated 7 April 2017
  • This entry is complete

Mountains of Shadow

The western border of Mordor

Map of the Mountains of Shadow

A range of mountains that ran north to south between Ithilien and Mordor, forming the western border of Sauron's Dark Land. At the southern extent of Mordor's western border, the range turned eastward and ran for some four hundred miles to create a southern frontier for the Dark Land.

Also known by the Elvish name of Ephel Dúath, the main pass through the Mountains of Shadow was through the valley of Imlad Morgul, guarded (at the time of the War of the Ring) by the tower of Minas Morgul. In their northern parts, the mountains had a series of ridges and hills on their eastern side, known as the Morgai.

The Mountains of Shadow on the borders of Mordor are not to be confused with the Ered Wethrin that bordered the land of Hithlum, north of Beleriand, and whose name is also translated into English as 'Mountains of Shadow'.

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