The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Men settled here sometime after their Awakening in I 1
Wide lands south of Gondor and Mordor, beyond the river Harnen
Umbar stood on the western coasts of Haradwaith1
hara'dwaith (ai is pronounced like the English word 'eye')
Literally 'south people'2
Other names


About this entry:

  • Updated 22 September 2023
  • Updates planned: 1


A southern region of Middle-earth

Map of Haradwarth

A land or region to the south of Gondor and Mordor. The name is taken from the people who lived there, and literally means 'South-folk'.



Umbar is the only recorded settlement of Haradwaith, but there were doubtless many others. Haradwaith represented the region known in modern times as Africa, so it must inevitably have contained numerous lands and cities, but its geography and peoples were almost unknown to those in the northwest of Middle-earth. For that reason, apart from the port of Umbar and the Harad Road, Haradwaith appears as an empty space on maps of northwestern Middle-earth, with that blank area representing only a tiny part of the vast continent that lay beyond.


The Elvish name-ending -waith literally meant 'people' but often, as in the case of Haradwaith, it became transferred to the region where that people lived. So, while the name Haradwaith literally meant 'south people', it expressed an extended meaning something like 'land of the southern people'. A similar effect is seen in names like Enedwaith ('middle people', used of the lands between Arnor and Gondor) and Forodwaith ('north people', used of both a people and of the cold northern lands where they dwelt).

See also...



About this entry:

  • Updated 22 September 2023
  • Updates planned: 1

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