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Fall of Gondolin
GB
Conflict: War of the Jewels
Date: FA 510
Place: Gondolin
Outcome: The demise of the great city of Gondolin and the death of Turgon
Combatants
Elves of Gondolin Army of Melkor
Commanders
Turgon
Tuor
Ecthelion
Glorfindel
Duilin
Rog
Egalmoth
Penlod
Galdor
Legolas of Gondolin
Morgoth
Gothmog
Beast of Gondolin
Maeglin
Salgant of the Harp
Strength
Twelves Houses of the Gondolindrim Thousands Dragons, Orcs & Balrogs
Casualties
Heavy Very Heavy

The Fall of Gondolin was the battle between the forces of Gondolin under King Turgon and Morgoth, after Maeglin had betrayed the city's hidden location to the enemy. This battle took the lives of most of the Gondolindrim, and of Turgon and his captains. However, some few managed to escape the through a secret passage, notably Tuor, Idril, and their son Eärendil.

HistoryEdit

When the Ñoldor cities of Beleriand fell to the wrath of Morgoth one by one, Gondolin, hidden within the Crissaegrim, remained as the last bastion of hope for those who opposed him. But in FA 551, Turgon's nephew, Maeglin, secretly lusting after his cousin Idril and afterwards failing to receive her love, divulged the secrets of Gondolin and its passes to Morgoth, who then orchestrated the assault for many years before finally unleashing his armies upon the unprepared Elves. Due to information passed by Maeglin, Morgoth's forces managed to surround the city without being detected, coming over the Encircling Mountains at the point where the watch was least vigilant and during a time of festival. By the time the Elves became aware of them, the city was under siege, and there was no hope of victory or escape on the part of the defenders.

For many days the Elves of Gondolin held their ranks and the city. The battles that raged beneath its walls were bloody and terrible - courageous leaders and warriors, most predominantly Ecthelion and Tuor, became legends, and later songs and epic poems would be written of them. Swords such as Orcrist and Glamdring earned their reputations here, and became feared among orcs.

However, Morgoth's armies were too numerous and powerful for the Elves to overcome, as they were comprised not only of Orcs and other mundane Dark creatures, but of Balrogs and an entire brood of Dragons fathered by Glaurung. The defenders of the city managed to leave their mark on the attackers, slaying at least two Balrogs, one of whom was Gothmog himself, but ultimately, the battle was a complete and decisive victory for Morgoth. With Gondolin's fall, the last of the great Elven kingdoms in Middle-earth was destroyed, and with it was destroyed any terrestrial hope of resisting Morgoth's power.

CanonEdit

The Fall of Gondolin is the third of the Great Tales, but was the first written by Tolkien, and is the second most complete of the tales (after The Children of Húrin, and is less fractured than the materials used to make up Beren and Lúthien (2017) as stand alone and 'continuous' as possible).

The sources for this major First Age event are the chapters "The Fall of Gondolin" of The Book of Lost Tales Part Two [1] and "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin" in The Silmarillion, which both tell of the founding of the Elven city of Gondolin (built in secret by Turgon and his people), of the arrival Tuor, a prince of the Edain, of the betrayal of the city to Morgoth by Turgon's nephew Maeglin, and of its subsequent destruction by Morgoth's armies.[2]

The Lost Tales chapter goes more into depth than the account in The Silmarillion, telling notably in detail of Tuor's and Ecthelion's feats in battle, and mentioning every captain of the Houses of the Gondolindrim.

BackgroundEdit

J.R.R. Tolkien actually began writing the story that would become "The Fall of Gondolin" in 1917, in an army barracks on the back of a sheet of military marching music. It is more or less the first traceable story he ever wrote down on paper about the Middle-earth legendarium.

Because Tolkien was constantly revising his First Age stories, the narrative he wrote in 1917 (published posthumously in The Book of Lost Tales Part Two) remains the only full account of the fall of the city. The narrative in The Silmarillion was the result of the editing by his son Christopher of various different sources.

A partial new version of "The Fall of Gondolin" was published in the Unfinished Tales under the title "Of Tuor and his Coming to Gondolin". Actually titled "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin", this narrative shows a great expansion of the earlier tale. It can be surmised from this text that Tolkien would have rewritten the entire story, but for reasons that are not known he abandoned the text before Tuor actually arrives in the city. For this reason Christopher Tolkien retitled the story before including it in Unfinished Tales.

Translations around the WorldEdit

Foreign Language Translated name
Afrikaans Val van Gondolin
Albanian Bie e Gondolin
Amharic ውድቀት ጞንዶሊን ?
Arabic سقوط جوندولين
Basque Gondolin Jaitsiera
Belarusian Cyrillic падзенне Гондолина
Bengali পতনের গন্ডোলিন
Bosnian Pad Gondolin
Bulgarian Cyrillic Падането на Гондолин
Catalan Caiguda de Gondolin
Cantonese 贡多林的陷落
Cebuano Pagkapukan sa Gondolin
Chinese (Simplified) 冈多林的陷落
Corsican Caduta di Gondolin
Croatian Pad Gondolina
Czech Pád Gondolinu
Danish Fald Gondolin
Dutch Val van Gondolin
Esperanto Falita de Gondolin
Estonian Sügisel Gondolinist
Filipino Pagbagsak ng Gondolin
Finnish Gondolinin tuho
French Chute de Gondolin
Frisian Fal fan Gondolin
Georgian შემოდგომაზე ღონდოლინ
German Sturz von Gondolin
Greek πτώση της Γκόντολιν
Gujarati ફોલ ઓફ ગોન્ડોલીન
Haiti Creole Tonbe nan Gondolin
Hawaii Hina o Gondolin
Hebrew בסתיו מגונדולין
Hungarian Gondolin Bukása
Hmong Zeeg ntawm Gondolin
Icelandic Detta af Gondolin
Igbo ọdịda nke Gondolin
Indonesian Jatuhnya Gondolin
Italian Caduta di Gondolin
Irish Gaelic Titim de Gondolin
Japanese 落下 の ゴンドィン
Javanese Tiba saka Gondolin
Kannada ಫಾಲ್ ಆ ಗೊಂಡೋಲಿನ್
Kazakh Cyrillic құлдырауы Гондолін
Kurdish فاڵ ۆف عۆندۆلین ? (Arabic script) Ketina ji Gondolin (Latin)
Kyrgyz Cyrillic кулашы оф Гондолин
Latin Ruina Gondolin
Latvian Krišana Gondolin
Lithuanian Rudenį Gondolin
Luxembourgish Stuerz vun Gondolin
Malagasy Nianjeran'i Gondolin
Malay Kejatuhan Gondolin
Maltese Waqgħa tal Gondolin
Maori Hinga o Gondolin
Navajo Jootłish Gondolin
Nepalese पतन ङोन्दोलिन
Norwegian Høsten Gondolin
Persian سقوطگوندولین
Polish Upadek Gondolinu
Portuguese Queda de Gondolin
Querétaro Otomi Caída ar Gondolin
Romanian Căderea Gondolin
Russian Падение Гондолина
Scottish Gaelic Tuiteam de Gondolin
Serbian Пада Гондолина (Cyrillic) Pada Gondolina (Latin)
Sinhalese ෆල්ල් ඔෆ් ගොඳොලින්
Slovak Pád Gondolinu
Slovenian Padec Gondolin
Somali Dhici ee Gondolin
Spanish Caída de Gondolin
Sudanese Ragrag tina Gondolin
Swahili Kuanguka kwa Gondolin
Swedish Hösten Gondolin
Tajik Cyrillic тирамоҳи оф Гондолин
Tamil வீழ்ச்சி கொந்தொலிந்
Telugu ఫాల్ అఫ్ గొండోలిన్
Thai การล่มสลายของกอนโด
Turkish Gondolin'in Sonbahar
Turkmen Gondolin Ýykylmak ?
Ukrainian Cyrillic падіння Гондоліна
Uzbek Фалл оф Гондолин (Cyrillic) Gondolin'de qulashi (Latin)
Vietnamese Sụp đổ của Gondolin
Volapük Falön Gondolin
Welsh Cwymp Gondolin
Xhosa Ukuwa Gondolin
Yiddish פאַלן פון גאָנדאָלין
Yoruba Isubu ti Gondolin
Yucatec Maya Caída u Gondolin

ReferencesEdit

  1. The History of Middle-earth, Vol. II: The Book of Lost Tales Part Two, chapter III: "The Fall of Gondolin"
  2. The Silmarillion, Quenta Silmarillion, Chapter XXIII: "Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin"

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