The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Dates
Gondolin stood between I 116 and I 510 (394 years)
Location
North of Beleriand, within the Encircling Mountains
Origins
Built by Turgon
Race
Divisions
Culture
Pronunciation
Gondolin is pronounced 'go'ndolin'
Meaning

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  • Updated 7 March 2013
  • This entry is complete

Seven Names of Gondolin

The names of Turgon's Hidden Realm

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"The seven-naméd city 'tis that stands upon the hill,
Where all who strive with Morgoth find hope and valour still."
from The Lay of the Fall of Gondolin,
one of several Poems Early Abandoned
in The History of Middle-earth volume 3 (The Lays of Beleriand)

The Hidden City of Turgon among the Encircling Mountains is known in almost all tales and records as Gondolin, translated as 'the Hidden Rock'. However, there were ancient traditions that the city had seven names, and (apart from Gondolin itself) those names were Gar Thurion, Gondobar, Gondothlimbar, Gwarestrin, Loth and Lothengriol. These are the Sindarin forms of the Seven Names; for Gondolin at least we have a Quenya version, which was actually the original form: Ondolindë. If there were Quenya equivalents of the other six names, however, they are not recorded.

Gondolin The most famous of the seven names, and the one used throughout the histories of the First Age. The name came originally from the Quenya Ondolindë, 'Rock of the Music of Water', but was adapted to Sindarin usage as Gondolin, which was suitably interpretable as 'Hidden Rock'.

Gar Thurion 'The Secret Place', a name closely related to Gondolin the 'Hidden Rock'; both names related to the fact that the city was hidden from the eyes of friends and foes alike.
Gondobar 'City of Stone'.
Gondothlimbar 'City of the Dwellers in Stone'. Gondobar and Gondothlimbar, the City of Stone and the City of the Dwellers in Stone, were poetically linked.
Gwarestrin 'Tower of Guard'. This usage is not to be confused with Minas Tirith, which also translates as 'Tower of Guard' (in fact there were two towers named Minas Tirith in history, and during the First Age the earlier tower lay not far from Gondolin to the northwest).
Loth 'Flower'.
Lothengriol 'The Flower that Blooms on the Plain', a reference to the city standing in the midst of the valley of Tumladen.

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