|!||The title of this article is conjectural.|
While the content of this article is based on official information, the actual name of the subject remains pure conjecture, and is yet to or cannot be officially named.
|Skirmish in Balin's Tomb|
|Conflict: War of the Ring|
|Date: January 15, TA 3019|
|Place: Balin's Tomb|
|Outcome: The Fellowship of the Ring escapes, Gandalf and the Balrog of Morgoth continue to fight in the Battle of the Peak|
|Fellowship of the Ring||Goblins of Moria|
|Gandalf||Durin's Bane † Unnamed Goblin chieftain † (books only)|
| 300-1000 Goblins|
| Samwise Gamgee and Frodo lightly wounded|
| Many Goblins|
|War of the Ring|
Attack on the Woodland Realm – Weathertop – Balin's Tomb – Durin's Tower – Amon Hen – Fords of Isen – Near Fangorn – Cair Andros – Hornburg – Isengard – Ithilien – Battle of Osgiliath – Dale – Lórien – Mirkwood – Pelennor Fields – Cirith Ungol – Black Gate – Dol Guldur – Bywater
- "We cannot get out. The end comes. Drums, drums in the deep. They are coming..."
- —from the Book of Mazarbul, read by Gandalf before they are attacked
The Skirmish in Balin's Tomb, also known as the Battle of the Chamber of Mazarbul, was a battle between the Fellowship of the Ring and the goblins of Moria. The goblins had discovered the presence of the Fellowship, and while Gandalf was reading the harrowing tale of the fall of Balin and his Dwarves from the Book of Mazarbul, the goblins mobilized.
The Fellowship barred the west door of the tomb to slow the goblins, while leaving the east door open as an escape route. As the doors were being barricaded, the goblins attacked, charging down the passage from the 21st hall. While the Fellowship drew their weapons, Gandalf opened the door to scout the enemy, seeing a large group of goblins with a Cave-troll. The cave-troll began breaking the door, but was stabbed in the foot by Frodo. The goblins finished the job with battering rams and hammers, and charged in. The Fellowship defeated thirteen and the rest fled in terror. However, an goblin-chieftain barged in and stabbed Frodo, who fortunately was protected by his Mithril shirt. Sam and Aragorn attacked the chieftain and succeeded in slaying him. The Fellowship then retreated through the eastern door to the second hall and the Bridge of Khazad-dum.
The Fellowship of the Ring arrived at the gates of Moria finding a riddle on the gate saying "Speak friend and enter". While Gandalf attempted to solve the riddle, Boromir threw a rock as he awaited for the door to open. Unbeknownst to him, the rock disturbed the Watcher in the Water who, right after Gandalf managed to open the gates rose from the lake and tried to take Frodo, though he was shot by Legolas and the entire Fellowship managed to escape to inside the mountain. In rage, the creature destroyed the gate-area, barricading their way out. The Fellowship then had no choice but to move forward deep into Moria to exit via the eastern gate, a three days march away. While en route to the exit they camp for a time in a guardroom near a crossroads of three passages that has a deep well in it. Pippin foolishly threw a stone down the well out of pure curiosity, angering Gandalf and alerting the Goblins to their presence. After some deliberation, Gandalf chose the passage to the right. Slowly, they made their way through the mines until they come to the twenty-first hall, and through that, the Chamber of Records that held Balin's Tomb. As Gandalf read the records of the colony of Moria drums begun to sound and the Goblins move towards the Fellowship.
The Fellowship had barred the doors, however, the goblins and a Troll were still able to break through and rush inside to attack. Eventually, the troll is wounded and retreats, along with many Goblins, and the Fellowship attempts to escape through the Eastern exit, but the goblin chieftain breaks in stabbing Frodo in the chest with a long spear. Aragorn deals with the chieftain and then picks up Frodo and flees with the rest of the Fellowship. They are amazed when Frodo tells them that he is unharmed, and reveals his mithril vest to the fellowship. Soon after, the Fellowship leaves Balin's tomb and heads towards the Bridge of Khazad-dûm.
The goblins managed to surround the Fellowship but when they were about to attack, the sounds of a great noise made them flee the scene. Gandalf realized that the goblins fled because they were frightened of the Balrog, an ancient evil servant of Morgoth that had been roused and was now aware of them all. Gandalf tried to seal the door to the chamber against the Balrog but the latter proved too strong. After moving down the path they discovered a huge chamber with a fiery chasm. Then, the goblins and the Balrog pursued the Fellowship again, signified by the drums starting again. The Fellowship turned and fled to the Bridge of Khazad-dûm. As they reached and crossed the bridge, several goblin archers shot at them. When the Balrog reached their heels, Gandalf commanded the rest of the group to cross the bridge. He then commenced to battle the Balrog. Gandalf revealed his title to the Balrog, causing him to shrink away. Then as he returned to hit Gandalf with his molten sword, Gandalf put up a shield of his power, defying the strike. In the end, Gandalf with his staff made the bridge to collapse at the feet of the Balrog. The Balrog fell, but used its whip to take Gandalf with him, and both fall into the abyss. The rest of the Fellowship mourned and were in terror, but Boromir and Aragorn led them out of the mines and towards Lothlórien.
Portrayal in AdaptationsEdit
Peter Jackson's The Fellowship of the RingEdit
- "Let them come! There is one dwarf yet in Moria who still draws breath!"
In the film The Fellowship of the Ring, after Gandalf finishes reading the Book of Mazarbul Pippin foolishly knocks a body into a well, causing much racket. Drums sound below. Goblin shrieks follow, the Fellowship bar the door with ancient axes, and Boromir announces the attackers have a cave-troll with them. The goblins hammer and hew at the door, while Legolas and Aragorn attempt to shoot them through the cracks they make. Then the door is destroyed and numerous goblins pour in. The Fellowship battles the goblins until the troll smashes down the door and enters the tomb. The troll immediately destroys part of the sarcophagus after it is shot at multiple times by Legolas, including a shot at the top of its head. The troll soon turns its attention to Frodo, while the rest of the Fellowship is busy with the goblins. Aragorn, seeing the cave-troll about to attack Frodo, comes to his aid and stabs the troll with a large spear. The troll batters Aragorn away and stabs Frodo with the spear. Thinking Frodo is dead, Merry and Pippin leap onto the animal's back. This distraction allows Legolas to score a perfect shot through the roof of the monster's mouth, killing it. Frodo survives the troll attack, thanks to the Mithril vest he was wearing, and Gandalf leads the Fellowship out of Balin's tomb and toward the Bridge of Khazad-dûm before more dangers arrive.