The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien


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  • Updated 15 August 2016
  • Updates planned: 1


The weir on the Withywindle

Map of the Withy-weir
Map of the Withy-weir (partially conjectural)

Across the river Withywindle, some distance to the north of Grindwall, a weir or small dam had been built across the river. The water rushed down over the weir and into a stretch known as the Windle-reach, and from there flowed on past the landing at Grindwall, down past Haysend and into the Brandywine.

According to the poem Bombadil Goes Boating, Tom Bombadil crossed the Withy-weir in his boat on at least one occasion. Passing the weir while travelling downstream was relatively simple: his boat was carried over the dam by the rushing river water and sent spinning downstream along the Windle-reach. How Tom made his way back over the weir was more mysterious: according to the lore of the Hobbits who lived nearby, he called on helpful otters to carry his boat back over the dam.

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