The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Dates
Inaccessible to mortals after the Downfall of Númenor in II 33191
Location
Surrounding Arda beyond the Encircling Sea, separating the World from the Timeless Void beyond
Settlements
The house of Nienna was said to look outward from these Walls
Gates
The Door of Night in the West, and presumably also the Gates of Morning in the east1
Other names

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About this entry:

  • Updated 22 July 2020
  • Updates planned: 1

Walls of Night

The ancient boundaries of Arda

The extraordinary walls that surrounded Arda in ancient times, beyond Ekkaia, the Encircling Sea. In the west and east of the World, Ekkaia was wide, and the Walls were a great distance from land. In the north and south, however, the Encircling Sea was much narrower. This was how Melkor returned into the World during the time of the Lamps of the Valar, coming secretly over the Walls of Night into the north of Arda, and building there his fortress of Utumno beyond the knowledge of the Valar.


Notes

1

It is far from clear what happened to the Walls of Night after the cataclysm that destroyed Númenor and changed the shape of the World. We can be sure that the Walls existed during the Second Age (we have a description of Númenórean explorers finding their way to the Gates of Morning in the distant East). After the World was made round, however, there could be no possible place for the Walls to stand (and so from a mortal perspective, they would essentially have ceased to exist). The Elves, however, could still travel the Straight Road into the West, and so from their perspective the Walls may have remained in place, at least after they left the Bent World behind them.

Indexes:

About this entry:

  • Updated 22 July 2020
  • Updates planned: 1

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