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|Siege of Dale|
|Conflict: Battle of Five Armies|
|Date: TA 2941|
|Place: Ruins of Dale and Dwarven kingdom of Erebor|
|Outcome: Pyrrhic Victory for Elves, Men, and Dwarves|
|Dol Guldur - (Moria, Mount Gundabad, Misty Mountains, Ettenmoors)|
| Bard the Bowman|
Dain II Ironfoot
| Forces defending Dale:|
1,000 Laketown citizens
150 Laketown militia
200 Laketown bowmen
100 Laketown guards
1,500 Silvan Elves of Mirkwood
Force defending Erebor:
1,500 Silvan Elves from Mirkwood
2,000 Dwarves from the Iron Hills (consisting of 250 Dwarven Goat and Ram riders, 1,000 Dwarven infantry, 5 war chariots, and 9 heavy crossbows)
13 Dwarves from the Lonely Mountain
| Force attacking Dale:|
10,000 Guldur Orcs
| Casualties inside Dale:|
300-500 Men of Dale
Dozens of Laketown citizens
Casualties outside Erebor:
Nearly 1,000 Elves
|Majority of forces destroyed (4-5 trolls and more than 1,000-2,000 surviving orcs retreat to the tunnels)|
Beginning of the battle outside Erebor and Dale Edit
Before the Orc army arrived, there was an initial skirmish between Thranduil's army and Dain's forces. After exchanging insults with Thranduil, Gandalf, and Bard, Dáin ordered his ram-riders to charge the Elves. Thranduil ordered his archers to fire a volley of arrows at the Dwarves mounted on goats. But the Dwarves countered with spinning ballista shots that shredded the hail of arrows and crashed into the Elven ranks. However, once the Dwarves got close enough to Thranduils's army, many of them were shot down or speared by the Elves. Some Elves were knocked down by the goats, but others held firm against the Dwarves despite their casualties. The Elven ranks simply reformed and funneled the Dwarves in. Dáin and his infantry soon clashed into the ranks of the elves, resulting in the massacre of dozens of elves and dwarves. Before both sides suffer heavier casualties, they are interrupted by the were-worms bursting out of the ground and leaving behind five gaping holes in the ground.
Upon the arrival of Azog's massive orc forces, Dáin Ironfoot rallies his troops and leads his surviving forces of Dwarven warriors (consisting of more than 40 Dwarven goat-riders, 5 war chariots carrying more than 20 warriors, and 800 Dwarven infantry) to battle against the Orc armies. The dwarves set up a shieldwall and stand their ground as the orcs charge toward them in a massive wave. Before the orcs collide with the dwarves, Thranduil dispatches several hundred of his elf-warriors to launch a surprise frontal attack. The distraction is enough for the dwarves to break their shieldwall and charge into the ranks of the orcs with lowered spears. Dain on his armored war hog and Thranduil on his giant stag fight in the front ranks, slaying dozens of orc warriors in the process.
Seeing the first wave of his troops being cut to pieces by the elves and dwarves, Azog signals his war beasts to attack. Dozens of armored mountain trolls and Ogres pour out of the tunnels and advance upon the dwarves and elves. Thranduil rallies his archers who fire a barrage of arrows at the war beasts, killing three Guldur Olog-Hai trolls and hundreds of orcs in the process. Dáin and Thranduil then throw the rest of their troops into the fray and launch a fresh attack, inflicting heavy casualties on the forces of Azog the Defiler.
Azog notices two of the dwarven war chariots slaughtering dozens of his warriors and orders his war beasts to destroy the chariots. A group of ten Ogres charge the war chariots and managed to destroy them in the process, crushing the goats pulling the chariots and striking down the dwarves with their clubs.
Breaching the Walls of Dale Edit
Knowing that the dwarves, men, and elves could not fight on two battlefronts, Azog seizes the opportunity and orders a full-scale attack on the city of Dale. A force consisting of nearly 10,000 Guldur Orcs, four armored trolls, and fifteen Ogres began their advance towards the walls of Dale, while seven massive trolls, each of them carrying a catapult on their backs manned by a crew of seven Goblin Mercenaries climb out of the tunnels and set up their positions on a hilltop facing Dale.
As Bard and his men, along with Gandalf and Bilbo fall back to the city, the catapults were fired and inflicted heavy damage on the walls of the city. A portion of the wall was breached and collapsed by a troll-ram, and hundreds of orcs poured into the city, killing dozens of the unexpected Laketown villagers inside.
Rescue of Bain, Sigrid, and Tilda Edit
As the Guldur orcs pour into Dale and terrorize the villagers, Bard's daughters Sigrid and Tilda become separated from their brother Bain and are closely pursued by two orcs. Bain soon finds them and rescues his sisters by killing the two orcs with a sword he took out of the city armory. The three children soon catch up with their father, who has led his men in a full-front charge against the orcs and goblins.
Bard soon finds his children waiting for him at the abandoned marketplace, but soon discovers a large ogre advancing upon them with his club raised above his head. Mounting on an abandoned cart and riding down the sloping road, Bard rides the cart over the heads of his daughters and son, jumps off the cart, and drives his sword through the ogre's chest, killing him instantly.
Retreat to the Citadel Edit
After rescuing his children from the ogre, Bard tells them to gather the women and children and lead them to the safety of the citadel. At first, Bain, Sigrid, and Tilda refuse to do so and want to stay with their father, but Bard, with a little help from Alfrid Lickspittle, urges them to do what they are told. The children do not hesitate to help the surviving villagers gather together and make their way through the deserted buildings of the city until they arrive at the citadel.
While Alfrid, Bain, Sigrid, Tilda, and the Laketown villagers make their way to the citadel, Bard gathers his men together and launches a fresh attack against the Guldur Orcs and armored trolls. Bowmen fire arrows at the orcs and goblins, killing dozens of them in the process. Laketown guards and militia keep back the orcs with spears and swords, with Bard fighting at their head. Gandalf strikes down a few orcs with his staff and uses his sword Glamdring to cut down several others, while Bilbo slashes at the legs of a few orcs with his sword Sting.
Arrival of Thranduil and the Wood Elves into Dale Edit
As more orcs and goblins, along with a small group of armored trolls, pour through several breaches into the walls of Dale, Thranduil gathers a company of his warriors and archers and leads a charge towards the main gate. Thranduil rides ahead of his forces on his giant stag, trampling down and slaying dozens of Guldur Orcs that have occupied the bridge leading to the gate. The stag even catches several orcs in his massive antlers, to which the king of the wood elves dispatches them quickly by beheading them with his sword.
Just as Thranduil rides through the open gates of the city, goblin archers shoot down his stag, forcing the Elven king to leap down from his fallen mount and find himself surrounded by dozens of Guldur Orcs. Wielding his two curved Elven swords, Thranduil furiously attacks the orcs, slaying a large number of them before the rest of his warriors join him in the fray. The wood elves fight furiously to protect their king, but dozens of them are slain by the pikes and scimitars of the orcs in the process.
The Dwarves and Men are driven back Edit
Bard and his men stand their ground and try to kill as many orcs as possible, but they are heavily outnumbered and fall one by one beneath the swords and pikes of the orcs. With the villagers safely inside the citadel and dozens of his men being slain by the enemy, Bard orders his surviving troops to pull back to the citadel. The Guldur Orcs then pursue the men, slaying several more as they retreat. Bilbo, Gandalf, Thranduil, and the Silvan Elves continue to fight on, killing many of the enemy as they become surrounded on all sides.
Outside the city of Dale and the Lonely Mountain, the situation goes from bad to worse for Dain and his warriors. Many of the wood elves who had joined them at the beginning of the battle are slain by the ferocity of the orcs, Ogres, and trolls, while a few hundred of the survivors pull back to Dale to join up with their king. The orcs and trolls begin to overpower Dáin's own troops, crushing and slaying dozens of the Dwarves in the process. Three orcs kill Dáin's armored hog with their pikes and the dismounted Dwarf-lord furiously attacks them, wielding his war hammer and crushing several of them. He calls out to his troops and wonders where his cousin Thorin was, stating that they needed him.
Realizing that they would soon be overrun by the vehemence and overwhelming numbers of the enemy, Dáin calls for a retreat to the barred gateway of Erebor. Dáin and more than 300 surviving Dwarves manage to break through the ranks of the orcs and set up a defensive position by the main gateway. The remaining enemy forces of Azog, consisting of more than 10,000 Guldur Orcs, a dozen Trolls, a few Ogres, and several dozen Goblin Mercenaries also regroup and begin to advance upon the remaining Dwarves.
Thorin and Bard rally the Dwarves and Men Edit
Just as the orc forces of Azog begin to gain control of the fields outside Erebor and the city of Dale, inside the Lonely Mountain Thorin broods for a while on his dragon-sickness. He then suffers an hallucination and regains his sanity, realizing the wrongs that he had done and that he must now join forces with Dáin, Bard, and Thranduil outside Erebor. He confesses to his companions of the wrongs he had done before he asks them to follow him into battle for the final time.
As Dáin and his remaining warriors prepare to make their final stand at the barred gateway of the Lonely Mountain, Azog orders his remaining Guldur forces to attack the Dwarves. Behind the ranks of Guldur Orcs, a large troll bearing a catapult manned by a crew of seven Goblin Mercenaries assembles itself facing the walls of Erebor. Six Guldur Olog-Hai Trolls armed with spiked wooden clubs lead the advance, with the Guldur Orcs following behind them. Before the Dol Guldur army reaches the Dwarves, Bombur sounds the great war horn of Erebor which causes the advancing enemy forces to halt in surprise and confusion. Inside the walls of Dale, Bilbo, Gandalf, Thranduil, Bard, and the elves and men also hear the horn being sounded and know that Thorin has joined the fight. Thorin and his twelve companions break open the front gate with a massive golden bell and charge out into the battlefield, donned in their armor and wielding axes, hammers, swords, and round shields. Dáin and his warriors then rally to Thorin and join him in the charge, letting loose their war cry and advancing upon Azog's forces.
Three Olog-Hai Trolls are killed from a volley of spears hurled by the Dwarves before they reach their ranks, and the remaining three Olog-Hai are cut down by the axes and swords of the Dwarven warriors. Thorin, Dáin, and their companions furiously collide against the ranks of the orcs, slaying hundreds of them in the process. Thorin, Fili, and Kili cut down several orcs with their short swords and shields, Dwalin, Nori, Bofur, and Dáin II Ironfoot strike down dozens of orcs with their war hammers, and Bombur wielding a flail smashes the skulls of a few orcs. The catapult-bearing troll is also killed, the Goblin Mercenaries are slaughtered, and the catapult is quickly destroyed.
Upon learning that Thorin has rallied the Dwarves and is driving back the orcs outside Dale and Erebor, Bard seizes his chance and rallies his remaining soldiers to fight against the Orcs pouring the streets of Dale. With renewed courage and valor, the Men of Dale and Esgaroth charge the orcs in a desperate attempt to kill as many as possible. Bilbo and Gandalf also join the men in their fight, killing several orcs and Goblin Mercenaries in the process.
The Women of Esgaroth join the battle Edit
As Bard and his men launch their counterattack against the Orcs, Hilda Bianca grabs a spear and tells the women and children that they should stand with the men in battle. As Bain and many of the women arm themselves with spears, knives, axes, and swords, Hilda and a few other women discover that Alfird has disguised himself as a woman to hide from the enemy. Hilda calls him a coward and a weasel before leading the armed citizens out of the main hall to face the enemy forces approaching the citadel. A jar tumbles off a rotting shelf and shatters on the stones, to which Alfrid discovers that it is filled with gold and silver coins from the Lonely Mountain.
Outside the citadel, a company of a hundred Guldur orcs pour out of the streets of the city and advance upon the citadel with raised shields and drawn scimitars. Hilda, Bain, and the women of Esgaroth charge the Orcs with their weapons drawn and collide into their ranks. The Orcs fought viciously, but soon found themselves being cut down by the dozens by the ferocity of the villagers. A large orc wielding an iron scimitar is gored in the stomach by Hilda's spear, a few others are cut down by Bain's own sword, and the women slay a large number of others before the few remaining orcs retreat in utter panic.
Bofur vs. the Amputated War Troll Edit
Outside Dale and Erebor, Thorin has successfully rallied the Dwarves and inflicted heavy casualties upon the orcs and trolls, but Thorin, his cousin Dáin, and their warriors are still heavily outnumbered. During the battle, Bofur discovers a large amputated war troll wreaking havoc among the ranks of Dáin's warriors, crushing dozens of dwarves with its flail arms and spiked club-feet. With the help of Nori and Gloin, Bofur manages to climb onto the troll's back, kills the orc driving the troll with an axe, and takes control of the troll. He reins in the troll and directs it into the ranks of the Guldur Orcs, crushing dozens of orcs in the process.
The Dwarf-Chariot vs. Trolls, Ogres, and Wargs Edit
After rescuing his cousin from a few Guldur Orcs, Dáin and Thorin reunite with each other on the battlefield. Dáin points out that there are too many orcs for the dwarves to handle and tells Thorin that he hopes he has a plan. Thorin, upon mounting one of the few remaining armored goats, tells Dáin that he plans to ride to Ravenhill and kill Azog once and for all. Dáin then asks Thorin on how he plans to fight single-handed to Azog's command post on Ravenhill, but before Thorin can respond, a dwarf-chariot drawn by a team of six rams appears. Balin drives the team, while Dwalin takes control of the arrow-launcher and Fili and Kili position themselves on either side of the chariot. As Thorin and his companions ride towards Ravenhill, Dáin states calmly, "May Durin save you all."
Thorin and his companions immediately charge into the front ranks of a large battalion of Guldur Orcs, slaughtering dozens of them in the process. Azog notices this and signals for his war beasts to attack. Six aggressive ogres lumber towards the dwarf-chariot, but the goats and chariot spring off the top of a rock that is towering above the ogres, and the scythe-blades on the chariot's wheels severs the ogres' heads, killing them all instantly. At the same time, a massive Troll armed with sickle blades attached to his arms charges straight at the dwarves, but Balin turns the goats sharply to the right and drives the chariot onto a frozen river. The troll springs into the river, breaking the ice beneath his weight, and crawls across the ice after the chariot. Kili tries shooting at the troll with his bow, including an arrow that pierces the troll's right claw, but the troll slowly gains on the dwarves. Bofur immediately comes to the rescue by having the amputated troll swing its flail arms into the troll's neck and skull, but the dying troll drags the amputated troll into the river with him. Bofur barely manages to escape by falling off the troll's back and landing on the ice for safety.
Balin, Dwalin, Fili, and Kili immediately discover a second armored troll standing in the middle of the frozen river, holding over its head a wooden bridge with dozens of Goblin Mercenary archers and orc archers mounted on it and blocking the chariot. Fili and Kili with their bows and Dwalin with the arrow launcher immediately fire at the troll, piercing the troll's jaw and throat with several bolts and killing the brute instantly. The goblins and orcs are killed as well, and the chariot safely passes over the dead troll's body.
Suddenly, a pack of wargs, with a dozen or so warg-riders appear on either side of the chariot and attack the goats pulling the chariot and the dwarves mounted on it. Despite Dwalin's, Fili's, and Kili's attempts to protect the goats and they manage to slay several wargs and orcs, the wargs managed to pull down and kill three of the goats during the chase. With only three remaining goats pulling the heavy chariot and the wargs closing in behind them, the dwarves know that they will never make it to Ravenhill. Balin immediately tells his brother to cut the traces and ride the remaining goats to Ravenhill, volunteering to stay behind and hold back the wargs as long as he could. Dwalin, Fili, and Kili mount on the three goats, cut them free of the chariot, and ride them onward to Ravenhill, while Balin activates the arrow launcher and kills all of the remaining wargs and warg-riders. Dwalin, Fili, and Kili soon catch up to Thorin, who leads them up the slopes of Ravenhill and slay a small force of Guldur orcs stationed at the foot of the hill.
Death of Alfrid Lickspittle Edit
Back in the city of Dale, Alfrid gathers up a huge amount of coins into his corset and attempts to escape from the battle, but he is confronted by a massive ogre who raises its club to kill him. Alfrid is quickly saved by Bard, who kills the ogre by firing an arrow into its chest. Bard angrily orders Alfrid to get up, but Alfrid argues that he makes his own decisions. Though he calls him a coward, Bard reluctantly lets Alfrid go.
Shortly after this, Alfrid ran into trouble yet again. While Gandalf was attempting to ward off a troll with his new staff, Alfrid had foolishly hidden himself inside the net of a trebuchet. Gandalf's staff was malfunctioning however, and as the troll advanced Alfrid panicked and sent a few coins tumbling from his corset. One coin landed on the trigger, and the trebuchet launched the screaming Alfrid into the trolls mouth, where he was suffocated to death. In turn the troll choked on him and died too as Gandalf watched in surprise.
The counterattack by Bard and the townspeople of Esgaroth has managed to stabilize the situation, but Legolas and Tauriel arrive with news that Bolg is approacing from the north with an army of Gundabad Orcs. Gandalf tries to persuade Thranduil to dispatch his remaining forces to Ravenhill to warn Thorin of the unexpected attack, but Thranduil refuses to spill any more blood of his people and decides to depart for Mirkwood. Thranduil and his troops reach the main gateway, but are halted by Tauriel and Legolas. After a short argument and learning that his son prefers to die defending the sons of Durin than saving his own life, the Elven-king makes up his mind and follows Legolas and Tauriel to Ravenhill.
Ending and aftermathEdit
The arrival of the Eagles and the death of Azog ended the siege. The surviving Orcs retreated to the tunnels, allowing the exhausted Elves and Men to claim a pyrrhic victory. An agreement was reached in the aftermath with Bard becoming King of Dale at the end of the battle and his people getting paid by Dain Ironfoot the riches that Thorin had promised them.
Placement and use Edit
Dale was not a place of battle in the book, but was used greatly in the film. In this, Azog sends a good third of his orc forces and several War-Beasts to strike the city, while the rest of his army occupies the allies in the valley, upon seeing this and the danger to the lake-town citizens inside, Thranduil and Bard both send a large portion of their men to defend the city, while what remains of the Lakemen and the elven forces on the field, aid the dwarven army. This evenly divides the forces against the orc onslaught.
- The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies