live here before Stone-houses; before Tall Men come up out of Water."
Words of Ghân-buri-Ghân
From The Return of the King
V 5, The Ride of the Rohirrim
A term of uncertain meaning, used among the Drúedain of Drúadan Forest in Gondor's northern lands. It seems to refer to the stone dwellings of the Gondorians (who the Wild Men called Stonehouse-folk), and especially the city of Minas Tirith (or 'Stone-city' to the Woses).
The only recorded uses of the phrase are in the reference given above and a subsequent mention of the 'walls of Stone-houses' (ibid), both of which are a little ambiguous. Either could in principle be read as equating the 'Stone-houses' with the 'Tall Men' or Dúnedain, rather than their stone dwellings. In his unpublished index to The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien clarifies things somewhat by defining the term as 'Gondor, also Stone-City'. Even this is slightly ambiguous, but 'Gondor' here seems to mean the 'City of Gondor' - that is, Minas Tirith - rather than the entire land).
For acknowledgements and references, see the Disclaimer & Bibliography page.
Website services kindly sponsored by Axiom Software Ltd.
Original content © copyright Mark Fisher 2000, 2015. All rights reserved. For conditions of reuse, see the Site FAQ.