The Shadowy Seas was an enchanted sea that lay closest to the shores of the Undying Lands, to the east of Tol Eressëa.

According to the The Atlas of Middle-earth, the Shadowy Seas covered the coastline area of Aman in a net formation some one-thousand miles measured from north to south.[1]


After the rebellion of the Ñoldor and the rising of the Moon, the Valar decided to further shield their realm from the outside world preventing any intruders from finding Aman, especially the rebel Ñoldor from returning. They darkened the immediate sea with spells as well as lack of light and created a chain of Enchanted Isles, each of which had the power to cause any mariner braving this region to fall into an eternal sleep.[2] Throughout the centuries that followed, no ship reached the shores of Aman, until Eärendil the Mariner finally succeeded in passing through the shadows of the Shadowy Seas.[3]

Notes Edit

  • Tolkien may have based the sea off the impossibility of entering heaven freely.

Translations around the WorldEdit

Foreign Language Translated name
Albanian Hije Dete
Arabic البحار الضبابية
Bulgarian Сенчест морета
Catalan Mars Ombrívol
Croatian Tajanstvenim Morima
Czech Temné moře
French Mers Ténébreuses
Dutch Schimmige zeeën
German Schattenmeere
Greek σκιερές θάλασσες
Hindi छायादार समुद्रों
Italian Mari d'ombre
Japanese 謎に包まれた海
Khmer (Cambodian) សមុទ្រស្រមោល ?
Korean 환상의 바다
Latvian Ēnainās jūrās
Lithuanian Iliuzinis jūrų
Norwegian Skyggefulle hav ?
Persian سایه دریا ?
Polish Cieniste Morza
Portuguese Mares Sombrios
Punjabi ਸਾਊਥਵਰਕ ਸਮੁੰਦਰ ?
Romanian Mările Umbră
Russian Тенистые морей
Serbian Тајновита морима (Cyrillic) Tajnovita Morima (Latinised)
Siamese (Thai) เงาทะเล
Slovak Temné Korí
Swedish ? Mörka Hav
Telugu క్రీనీడ సముద్రాలు
Turkish Gölgeli Denizler
Urdu مبہم سمندر
Ukrainian Тіньові морів
Vietnamese Biển vong linh

Seas of Arda

Belegaer | Ekkaia | Helcar | Núrnen | Rhûn | Ringol | Shadowy Seas


  1. The Atlas of Middle-earth, The First Age, The Elder Days, "Valinor"
  2. The Silmarillion, Quenta Silmarillion, Chapter XI: "Of the Sun and Moon and the Hiding of Valinor"
  3. The Silmarillion, Quenta Silmarillion, Chapter XXIV: "Of the Voyage of Eärendil and the War of Wrath"

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