The third of the great battles of the Wars of Beleriand, in which the Elves won such a victory over Morgoth that this battle is commonly called the Dagor Aglareb or Glorious Battle.
Sixty years after the first rising of the Sun, Morgoth launched a dual-pronged attack from Angband, sending Orcs down from the North to surround Dorthonion and cut off the northern passes of Beleriand. He imagined that the Noldor were unprepared, but Fingolfin and Maedhros led counterattacks that sent the Orcs fleeing back across Ard-galen. The Elves pursued them ruthlessly, leaving not a single survivor.
After the victory of the Third Battle, the Elves resolved to hold Morgoth in check by setting the Siege of Angband. With the Siege in place, Beleriand knew relative peace for nearly four hundred years. Meanwhile Morgoth laid his plans and swelled his forces beneath Thangorodrim until, without warning, he broke the Siege. The Fourth Battle, long after the Third, was the Dagor Bragollach, in which the northern defences of the Noldor were swept away and Morgoth reversed his defeat in the Dagor Aglareb.
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