The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien

Contents

Alphabetical index

Browse topics

Reference

Other editions

Tolkien news and resources

Sponsors and associates

Welcome to The Encyclopedia of Arda

The Encyclopedia of Arda is a personal project - a tribute to and a celebration of the works of J.R.R. Tolkien. The site is evolving into an illustrated hypertext encyclopedia of Tolkien's realms and peoples. It already contains about four thousand entries, and we're constantly adding new entries and expanding existing ones.

Inside the encyclopedia

The Encyclopedia of Arda contains thousands of articles covering topics from J.R.R. Tolkien's world, some brief, some lengthy and some containing detailed essays and discussions.

You'll also find a selection of interactive tools, including a chronicle to help you explore Tolkien's fictional history, and calendar to translate dates and events, a lexicon of names, a glossary of old and rare words, and much more.

Context and approach

The content of the Encyclopedia is written in the same context as Tolkien himself used; he presented himself simply as a translator, rather than originator of the tales. Hence, we try to describe his world from a 'historical' rather than a literary perspective, though sometimes it's useful to explore ideas in their wider context. Where relevant, therefore, you'll also find a few references to Tolkien's life or opinions, or to real historical or mythological parallels to events in his universe.

About the name Arda

Arda was the name given by the Elves to their world and all it contained, and so 'Encyclopedia of Arda' seemed a peculiarly apt title for this project.

Special thanks

Thanks to all those who've e-mailed us over the years with their suggestions, corrections, ideas and just general support.

But the real Special Thanks, though, belong to the memory of J.R.R. Tolkien for his extraordinary and unparalleled creation.

For acknowledgements and references, see the Disclaimer & Bibliography page.

Original content © copyright Mark Fisher 1997-2023. All rights reserved. For conditions of reuse, see the Site FAQ.

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Featured Entry

Elves of Lindon

The Elves that lived beyond the Blue Mountains

Those Elves who dwelt in the west of Middle-earth, between the Blue Mountains and the Great Sea, in the Second and Third Ages. They reached the height of their power in the Second Age under King Gil-galad, but waned after the War of the Last Alliance, in which Gil-galad met his end.

During the First Age, Lindon was a name used for the wooded lands at the western feet of the Blue Mountains. At this time the region lay far inland, and for much of its history had been empty of people. This changed when a branch of the Nandor - Elves who had fallen away from the Great Journey long beforehand - crossed the Mountains from the east. They settled in the land between the wide river Gelion and the mountains, and from their singing the land gained the name Lindon, meaning 'land of music'. These Laiquendi or Green-elves were thus the first Elves of Lindon, dwelling there until the time of the War of Wrath at the end of the First Age.

The Encyclopedia of Arda
The Encyclopedia of Arda