How Did Gandalf Not Know There Was a Balrog In Moria?

Discussion in '"The Lord of the Rings"' started by Bard the Bowman, Feb 24, 2012.

  1. Bard the Bowman

    Bard the Bowman Archer of Dale

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    Gandalf was surprised. He seemed very surprised to find out that a Balrog had confronted him. How is this possible? Shouldn't he have known what terror dwelt in Moria? Let us examine the facts.

    Gandalf knows that the dwarves were driven out. He also states that they delved to greedily and deep and that they awoke "Durin's Bane". What does he think Durin's Bane could be? A troll? A great orc? A foul creature of the deep?

    Also, Legolas speaks of when the "dwarves awoke evil in the mountains", which frightened Nimrodel and caused her to leave. So, something sinister enough to drive away a group of elves shouldn't be taken into consideration? Celeborn apparently knew of "a terror".

    The survivors when the Balrog first awoke may have been too traumatized by the intense evil and massacre to relay the specific information (appearance, etc..) to others, preferring to die with their haunting memories, so it is possible that all the dwarves had to go on was an "evil" called Durin's Bane. Yet Gloin speaks of a "nameless fear". Sauron is the only other attributed with that sort of title. It seems to me that perhaps that when Gandalf passed through Moria the Balrog had receded a bit and he assumed the dwarfs were exaggerating.

    Then of course there is the matter of Dain. Dain says, "Only I have LOOKED through the shadow of the Gate. Beyond the shadow it waits for you still. Durin's Bane."
    The LOOKED implies that he saw something, whether it was a figure wrapped in shadow, or wreathed in flame. I tend to think it was the former, as a glow would have been too distinct and the White Council would have had to be retarded not to put two and two together (so many 2's in this sentence).

    Aragorn says the memory of Moria is "very evil". Come on, how evil could orcs be? He's battled them before but doesn't treat them with the same dark attitude as he does his Moria or Mordor experience. It seems to me that he has some prior knowledge of some terror residing there, Balrog or some other foul creature.

    So the question is, was Gandalf simply hoping Durin's Bane "wasn't as bad as it sounded"? And just hoping to stealthily slide through Moria despite the existence of this unknown Durin's Bane?

    Did he hope that Balin had enough of a resistance that the path would be relatively easy despite Durin's Bane?

    Was a Balrog never even considered into the equation of the Third Age? Perhaps no one knew any more existed, although some obviously escaped the Great Battle. But remember, just because WE know some escaped doesn't mean the Maiar or even the Valar knew.

    Doesn't anyone else wonder about this?
     
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  2. Prince of Cats

    Prince of Cats Among the Trees

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    I think this is probably the 'truth' of the matter. From the tales we have, the Valar aren't omnipresent (Ulmo and his water perhaps excluded). And there was at least one other mysterious creature at Moria: the watcher in the water. Perhaps in Valinor the nature of the Watcher was more understood, but at least with this example there are other terrors left in ME in the TA that aren't Balrogs
     

  3. Bard the Bowman

    Bard the Bowman Archer of Dale

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    But why wouldn't Gandalf at least check it out? Why wasn't it a concern for the White Council. Let us examine the facts:

    They knew there was a terror residing in Moria. Dain's sinister account confirms it.
    They knew it was powerful. Destroyed the most powerful dwarfen kingdom ever.
    They knew it was either serving or allied/neutral to Sauron (Sauron knew of its existence and what it was exactly, and was comfortable sending his soldiers to serve it).

    So, the question is, (even if they didn't know it was a Balrog), why weren't they concerned with this terror exiting Moria through the West-Gate, and assaulting Rivendell? Gandalf felt it necessary to take out Smaug, even though there was no indication Smaug would fight for Sauron and Smaug seemed content with his treasure.

    Why not Durin's Bane?
     
  4. Troll

    Troll Lorekeeper of Nardor

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    Alright, I'm Gandalf. I have to get the Ring to Mordor, and I have four choices on how to get there:

    1) The High Pass, which is definitely being watched, will deposit the Ring in the orc-infested Vales of Anduin and will require me to pass the Gladden (which has been under the Enemy's close watch since the beginning of the Age) and then Dol Guldur itself, which is currently home to a very large Orc assault force prepping to march on Lorien. Bad idea unless you want to go for round two with the Nine.

    2) The Redhorn Pass. We know how that went.

    3) The Gap of Rohan. Besides adding weeks of overland travel to the journey on a time-sensitive mission, it also takes the Ring through hostile Dunland, past Isengard, and through a Rohan which is under Saruman's sway. And then, even if we get past Isengard, there will be no safe place to rest until getting to Mordor, because bringing the Ring to Minas Tirith may well be as dangerous as handing it to Saruman.

    4) Moria. There's something awful in there, but maybe - just maybe - the fact that Balin founded a new colony near the east gate means that the terror of the deep has subsided, either gone back to sleep or left... And maybe, if we are very, very quiet, we will make it out alive...
     

  5. Bard the Bowman

    Bard the Bowman Archer of Dale

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    Um okay Troll. I wasn't questioning Gandalf's choice of path. I was wondering why the White Council (or just Gandalf) didn't think to take out Durin's Bane sooner. Please re-read my last post.
     
  6. Bucky

    Bucky Registered User

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    I think, Tollolo, that Bard is actually asking in part, aside from your well put answers, is 'how could the White Council avoid investigating Moria up until this point?'...

    well, when this event occured (1980-81, T.A.), was one of the most crucial of all in Middle-earth history:

    T.A. 1944 Earnil defeats the enemy in South Ihilien. He wins the Battle of the Camp, & drives the Wainriders into the Dead Marshes. Arvedui claims the crown of Gondor.
    1945. Earnil receives the crown.
    1974. End of the North-kingdom. The Witch-king overruns Arthedain & takes Fornost.
    1975 Avedui drowns in the Bay of Forchal. .. The Witch-king defeated at the Battle of Fornost.. He vanishes from the North.
    1980. The Witch-king comes to Mordor & there gathers the Nazgul. A Balrog appears in Moria & slays Durin VI.
    1981. Nain i slain. The Dwarves flee from Moria. Many of the Silvan Elves of Lorien flee south. Amroth & Nimrodel are lost.
    Thrain I comes to Erebor & founds a dwarf-kingdom 'under the mountain'.
    2000 The Nazgul come from Mordor & beseige Minas Ithil.
    2002. Fall of Minas Ithil, afterwards know as Minas morgul. The palantir is captured.


    So, Just in this 60 year period, twenty or so each before and after the appearance of 'Durin's Bane', there is an awful lot going on: kingdoms falling left & right, even in Lorien, the king (Amroth) has fled & a new rulers (Celeborn & Galadriel) must be installed.....

    Then, on top of it, in 2060:
    After the last king has ridden off in 2043 to single battle versus the Lord of the Nazgul & never returned,

    'The power of Dol Gulder grows. The Wise fear it may be Sauron taking shape again.'

    So, I'd say wondering what some 'Nameless Thing', which without much description to go on (assuming most eyewitnesses died), is the likeliest assumption of what 'Durin's Bane' is, is likely to do now that Moria is abandoned is hardly ~ and rightfully so ~ high on The Wise's list of priorities.

    I mean, who would even think a Balrog was out there?

    Why would you?


    And, now that Moria is abandoned & dangerous to enter, with so many other pressing issues, Moria & what's in it hardly becomes top priority....

    ...And heads further & further on the 'to do list' until it never gets done as Gondor & the Elves wain & Sauron grows.
     
  7. Bard the Bowman

    Bard the Bowman Archer of Dale

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    But the thing is that Gandalf had time to send an expedition after Smaug, and it seemed to me that Smaug was far less of a threat than this mysterious Durin's Bane, which was for a fact allowing movement of Sauron's troops through Moria. And if this powerful (obviously) creature is with Sauron, why wouldn't they be concerned that it could suddenly storm out of Moria and ravage Rivendell? Gandalf feared the same thing with Smaug, a dormant threat much farther away and much less central.
     
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  8. Troll

    Troll Lorekeeper of Nardor

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    There was a ready-made expedition of Dwarves who were already willing to go kill off Smaug; Gandalf didn't have to drum up any extra enthusiasm there. Thorin probably would have attempted it with or without Gandalf's help, being the brave and incredibly stubborn Dwarf he was.

    Whereas with Moria... The Dwarves already fought a massive war, with the mustering of their entire nation, and still refused to set foot in the place. Unless the White Council members were interested in going personally into Moria (protip: they weren't) to root out some mysterious and unspeakable evil that seems content to lurk the deeps anyway, there wasn't much they could do about it.

    A failed assassination attempt on the Balrog would have likely carried similar consequences as Smaug's emergence from the Lonely Mountain to torch Lake-Town... except a Balrog can't be felled by some black arrow. If they provoked the Balrog into leaving Moria, the consequence would likely have been the utter destruction of Lorien and who knows what else. Not an acceptable price to pay for destroying a monster that doesn't seem to have had much interest in the daylit world.
     
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  9. Bard the Bowman

    Bard the Bowman Archer of Dale

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    Well that is actually surprisingly plausible.

    But just a few more stumpers here.

    1. They didn't know Durin's Bane (remember they didn't know it was a Balrog or what it was capable of) was content sleeping in Durin's bed. I think they would have supposed it was waiting for Sauron's command to attack and ravage the free peoples, whether that be Lorien or Rivendell. Wouldn't that be more likely?

    2. Also, shouldn't the fact that the victorious dwarves refused to go into Moria be a wake-up call. "Hello! There's a terrifying (terrifying enough to stop an army of dwarves) monster in Moria in league with Sauron!". Even greater cause for concern? I think so. Granted a failed attempt to slay it would have resulted in Lorien's destruction, but one would suppose they should be thinking about that happening anyway.

    And also Gandalf's encouraging Thorin on the quest was foolish. Imagine a White Council meeting.

    Saruman: "Gandalf, what are you doing about Smaug the dragon?"

    Gandalf:"Don't worry, I've got 13 dwarves and a hobbit on that."

    Saruman:"Didn't Smaug kill thousands of dwarves there? How would 13 help?"

    Gandalf:"The brilliant part. I've settled on burglary."

    Saruman:"Are you going to steal the entire hoard? That would take hundreds of years. And if they're caught, they'll just incite the dragon to destruction. Call it off Gandalf."

    Gandalf:"Well, I just have a hunch."


    So this plan seems like a fool's plan too. Poor judgement, in line with the White Council's apparent refusal to deal with Durin's Bane.

    So, do you think it was just apathy on the Elves' part, resulting in an overload on Gandalf? (Since Saruman was busy with rings and Radagast was going green).

    As for the black arrow, they wouldn't know for certain Durin's Bane couldn't be killed by a black arrow, as they didn't know what Durin's Bane was.
     
  10. Starbrow

    Starbrow Tolkien Fan

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    That makes me think that the White Council was kind of like the United Nations. Powerful people get together to try to solve problems but nothing really gets done because somebody always vetoes the plan.:*p
     
  11. Bard the Bowman

    Bard the Bowman Archer of Dale

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    My personal opinion is that Gandalf was just too incredibly busy coordinating other events and dealing with other problems. The way I see it, at the time of The Hobbit, there were three main issues. Smaug, The Necromancer, and Durin's Bane. Gandalf had the most to do and had tons of other situations to deal with.

    Smaug Gandalf actually didn't think to deal with. I don't think he was actually hoping to accomplish anything by sending Bilbo and the dwarves, it was just a shot in the dark type of thing.

    Saruman was little concerned with anything except rings, and if you remember he only assaulted Dol Guldur due to Gandalf's pressuring and fear the Enemy would seize the Ring.

    The apparent reluctance to investigate Durin's Bane I think would be due to the elves' apathy. Why should they risk their necks against a nameless terror? Better to just sit there and delegate for the last few years on Middle-earth. Much safer.

    So all that was left was Gandalf, and did he think he would just hop into Moria and slay this terror? I don't think so. So because of the lazy elves and wizards, Gandalf had no choice but to abort. Look how much urging he had to do to get them to assault Sauron. It would be next to impossible to get the White Council to go to Moria.

    Poor Gandalf.
     
  12. cdarwincole

    cdarwincole New Member

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    I don't get the sense that Gandalf is surprised so much as disappointed. The power of Sauron has of late been growing ever more rapidly, bringing ancient evils out of the deep shadows at a rate and to an extent that none could guess. Still, Gandalf is aware that there are "older and fouler things than orcs in the deep places of the Earth." He hopes -- however desperate a hope it might be -- that the Fellowship might pass through Moria without encountering any. And indeed, after four days, they are nearly out of the mines without incident. They might have encountered any of a number of such unnamed "foul things" -- or any number of them. Fortunately, it is just the one; unfortunately, that one is a Balrog.

    Or is it so unfortunate? Gandalf passes the test, does he not? He has prepared himself to meet a Balrog -- and who know what else -- as well as he might. Pure of heart, and very well read, he meets and conquers this "nameless fear," this "creature from the Id" (Forbidden Planet) -- it shall not pass into the conscious world without -- and in so doing, Gandalf passes a test that the tainted Saruman never could. Gandalf thus displaces Saruman as the true White Wizard -- not pridefully of many colors, but humbly of all.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2017
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  13. Rohirrim

    Rohirrim New Member

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    I would agree with the above. Gandalf did not want to pass through Moria but was left with no other choice. From then on I sense that he knew there was a great danger. He may have speculated as to its exact nature but I'm sure he was hoping to avoid a confrontation.
     
  14. The flame of arnor

    The flame of arnor New Member

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    I believe he did know and in the movie his look was of oh crap he caught us. He might have known what needed to be done from the jump. In regards to Smaug he faced the problem, in regards to the ring he did as well. Maybe and I think he knew this Balrog needed to be dealt with before he joined and lead Saurons army to destroy the foes of the dark. The Balrogs were generals of legions, not just powerful demons. He could have very easily climbed back onto the bridge but he made the choice to face the shadow head on. Bravo Gandalph.
     
  15. Celebrimbors bane

    Celebrimbors bane New Member

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    Well all in all why would Gandalf know a balrog resided in Moria? It had been two ages of the world since a balrog had been seen or mentioned and while jrrt told us (specifying shelob and the balrog mainly) there is an overhang of evil of one age into another, there is still nothing from gandalfs point of view to indicate that it was a balrog. Yes durins bane eventually ravaged the dwarves of Moria and caused nimrodel to flee, but like Gandalf tells us there are older and fouler things than orcs in the deep places of the world, and he also mentions during his battle with durins bane that the deep places of Moria was filled with nameless things that he preferred not to describe to Aragorn and co. So again not really much for old gandy to go off, the white council may have just thought "ack those dwarves they've gone a bit deep and come across some nasty creatures down there but at least they're deep underground those horrid things"

    Gandalf and Aragorn's journey through Moria is also another reason why no one would suspect a balrog, while Aragorn thought the place as evil and not a nice place to go ( probs the effect of having an evil maia reside in it) both came out alive and well and boom still no sign of this great morgothian terror. Now in regards to the white council and the balrog apparently serving sauron, I must say o completely and utterly disagree here, in the books there is no evidence to suggest an alliance, after all if sauron had a balrog at his disposal he certainly wouldn't be leaving it in Moria to just hang about! As for the balrog tolerating sauronian orcs well why wouldn' He? Balrogs were generals in morgoths army and would be very used to being around orcs! And we also have no evidence to suggest the Moria orcs saw the balrog as their higher up, they certainly wouldn't give it large to the balrog( when the balrog enters marzabul the orcs fall silent and scared) which to me probably shows the balrog was a lone agent and like the nazgul when sauron wasn' around when morgoth wasn' around the balrogs would just lay dormant unless it felt a need to take action, which we have two cases of, first dwarves disturbing his legendary nap and two Gandalf dropping a roof on his head and probably feeling like the host of the valar have found him and sent another maia to deal with him.

    I must apologise long reply but interesting question! But as for the white council doing nothing against the balrog, I again ask why would They? Let's look at some facts

    The balrog hasn't left Moria since end of first age

    It' only attacked when disturbed

    It's showed no interest in the outside world!

    Gandalf , Aragorn and even a decent amount of dwarves for a time we're able to live there!

    As for Gandalf taking action against smaug well this is simple, the book kinda answers this it self, reason for disposing of smaug was strategic reasons! The north during the time of the hobbit was a shambles, no sturdy dwarves of the lonely mountain, no brave men of dale, closest thing to being able to stop sauron reclaiming angmar was dwarves of the iron hills or the elves of mirkwood. The elves of mirkwood we re already having problems with Dol guldur and probably didn' have the manpower to fight dol guldur and stopping another army further north! As for the dwarves of the iron hills they could stop sauron sending forces to reclaim angmar but smaug would be in the way and a problem! Hence the need to be rid of the Dragon so the north could be strong again. You look at where Moria is located not really much of an advantage for Sauron there, lorien is on the doorstep and is protected by galadriel and the ring of power. So all in all why should the white council go deep place hunting for something that is clearly strong but 1 isn' showing an interest in middle earth unless disturbed, 2 isn't allied with sauron (I mean heck if he wanted to help or serve Sauron why not reveal himself during 2nd age at the height of Saurons power?) 3 isn't even actually attacking in Moria unless people go down too deep or you happen to be another maia guiding the one ring the most potent object in middle earth through Moria!

    That's my answer anyway, apologies for how long it was!
     
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  16. Glorthanion

    Glorthanion New Member

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    I think the main (or at least another) reason Gandalf wanted to take out the dragon wasn't because it would likely join Sauron but thinking big picture he needed to reestablish the Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor and thus also strengthen Dale so they could stand against the Easterlings. Gandalf gets the dwarves to go along by promising to help them recover their treasure, but he often seems to not tell the everyone the whole plan when he sets things in motion.

    Agreed with all of that. The Balrog is lying low, it just wants to survive. In an entire age of Middle Earth it only acts twice. Once when it is discovered by the Dwarves burrowing too deep. And then when the fellowship comes through.

    The Balrog was a lesser Maia, not as powerful as Sauron in the Second Age but in the same order of power. Sauron in the Third Age though is a shadow of himself, much of his power tied up in the One Ring. Sauron has no way to force the Balrog to his will - no Palantir or Ring to work through. So at best he can send an emissary to negotiate. And probably did if the Moria Orcs are his minions. And I expect the Balrog refused as it didn't work out too well for him last time he went up against the Elves backed by the Valar.

    I think he was just going to lay low, but then the Fellowship shows up in Moria and up he comes. He didn't react to others passing through Moria, not even to a bunch of Dwarves moving in to rebuild Moria. So why react to the fellowship?

    Obviously he sensed the Ring somehow. He may not have known exactly what it was but given how much of Sharon's essence and power was bound into the Ring, it would have been a prize worth the risk of drawing attention. Perhaps enough power to move him into the top of the Maiar power range.

    Alternately, given Sauron and the Nazgul couldn't track the Ring obviously, perhaps it was Gandalf, another Maia that he sensed and came to confront. Although I think he would have avoided meeting a Maia if possible as that would be one sure way to get attention.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2018
  17. BalrogRingDestroyer

    BalrogRingDestroyer Member

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    I don't know if the Balrog COULD have taken down Lorien. I mean, Sauron as the Necromancer was camped right across the river in Dol Guldor for a long while and could have attacked it from there as he too was a Mair. If Sauron thought Lorien too strong to take over, the Balrog, who is presumably less stronger than Sauron, wouldn't be fool enough to try it either.

    Besides, Balrogs appear to have a weakness for water and Lorien lies across a stream or river.

    I think that Gandalf and Aragorn had some inkling that something VERY bad was in Moria, because Aragorn actually feared that Gandalf would not make it through Moria if they entered it.


    On the other hand, Gandalf didn't have much choice after the Redhorn Gate failed as Wargs kept attacking them. They'd never have made it further south without losing tons of the Fellowship to Wargs.

    And, knowing that Goblins/Orcs are in league with the Wargs, the orcs would eventually have been tipped off of their presence too. So they basically HAD to go through Moria.

    That said, I think if Gandalf knew a Balrog was in there, maybe he would have attempted the High Pass. (Going too near Isengard would risk a fight with Saruman, who is as dangerous as a Balrog, and, unlike the Balrog, actually HAD bested him before.)
     
  18. Alcuin

    Alcuin Registered User

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    Extracts from the Long Letter to Milton Waldman in Letters of JRR Tolkien, Letter 131, are appended ti the end of Reader's Companion. I do not know if the sections cited in Letter 131 along with the extracts in Reader's Companion comprise the entire letter. But there is a section in the Extracts that edited out of Letter 131. In Reader's Companion, p 745, there is the passage,
    I recall arguing years ago that when the Company of the Ring entered Moria, it was not a pre-planned trap. Perhaps this contradicts that notion: perhaps Sauron indeed planned to trap and kill them in Moria with the aid of the Balrog. Maybe the trap was one set by the Balrog to kill intruders, and it was as much surprised as Gandalf to find itself facing another Maia: after all, there is no reason to believe it was more certain than Gandalf what it was dealing with on the other side of the Door of Mazarbul.

    Some points here. The Balrog was hiding under Caradhras. It escaped the War of Wrath and the terror of the Host of the West under who-knows-what circumstances, and for all it knew, its enemies might return if they discovered there was yet another Balrog left unconquered. The Dwarves were at best a pesky nuisance; at worst, an existential threat: they might bring Elves, and Elves can and do kill Balrogs. I don’t believe the Balrog (or Smaug for that matter) acknowledged any overlordship by Sauron. It did permit some of Sauron’s orcs to enter Moria from Dol Guldur, but once in Moria, their allegiance had better be to the Balrog: the text says they were afraid of it. I do think Sauron meant to use not only Smaug to attack Rivendell, but the Balrog (possibly allied with Smaug) to attack Lórien, and quite likely Lindon, too. If Sauron’s original plans included his own presence at Lórien, with the assistance of the Balrog and Smaug, Lórien would never stand a chance. Gandalf knew about Smaug and managed to knock the dragon out of the picture: “chance” or “luck”, as it is called in Lord of the Rings.

    Sauron’s driving the Company of the Ring into Moria was fraught with risk if the Balrog discovered the One Ring. The thing wasn’t stupid, and its obtaining the Ring would be ruinous for Sauron.

    Prince of Cats points out the Valar weren’t omniscient, and besides, they’d apparently lost count of Morgoth’s guard of Balrogs.

    Bucky points out the series of disasters that hit the West in a very short time: Arnor collapsed completely, the palantíri of the North were lost, including the Chief Palantír of Middle-earth formerly kept in Amon Sûl, and the Dúnedain in the North barely survived; Khazad-dûm collapsed, and Durin’s Folk fled as refugees; Minas Ithil was taken; and King Eärnil of Gondor foolishly rode off to face the Witch-king and was never seen again. Think about today’s situation in Europe with refugees (and others!) flooding in from Africa and the Middle East. You have Dúnedain refugees in Eriador, Dwarvish refugees in Eriador and Wilderland, Dúnedain refugees crossing Anduin out of Ithilien. Moreover, the lords of Gondor are too frightened to choose a king among themselves because of the Kin Strife, so they opt to let the Steward rule in an ad hoc arrangement.

    Celebrimbors bane points out that Durin’s Bane never left Moria for over a thousand years after it was discovered. Even in the Battle of Azanulbizar, where it could have turned the tide and destroyed the Dwarves, it remained safely inside the gates of the ruined Dwarf-realm.

    Were the Elves of Lórien afraid of what lurked in Moria? You bet: Nimrodel fled along with many others. (That’s how Elvish blood came into the line of the Lords of Dol Amroth: Mithrellas, one of Nimrodel’s companions, was for a while the wife of Imrazôr the Númenórean of Dol Amroth and bore him children.) Did Celeborn and Galadriel discuss the possibility of Durin’s Bane being a Balrog? Celeborn’s words to the Company of the Ring, and against Gimli in particular, strongly suggest they had.

    The ruin of Khazad-dûm was a problem for Durin’s Folk and the descendents of Nogrod and Belegost who lived with them. The old alliance between Celebrimbor of Eregion and Durin’s Folk ended with Sauron’s rape of Hollin 3900 years before Durin’s Bane appeared and drove out the Dwarves. Elves and Dwarves were often at odds with one another anyway, and Men, often allies of Dwarves, were too distressed to help, particularly the Dúnedain both North and South. On top of all that, Frumgar led the Éothéod into the northern Vales of Anduin because Angmar was destroyed, but also to escape Dol Guldur. It’s cruel but accurate to say that the exile of the Dwarves was a problem for the Dwarves, especially when there were displaced people all over northwest Middle-earth, and I think that’s how they all saw it. They didn’t much help one another.

    Balin did dare to go to Moria despite the foreboding of Nain, who had glimpsed Durin’s Bane just inside the Great Gate. He and everyone with him were lost. But at the time Gandalf led the Company of the Ring into Moria, no one yet knew what had become of Balin and his expedition.

    From time to time, Smaug came out of Erebor and wasted the countryside round about to create his own private desert. Durin’s Bane never came out. Smaug was a recurring problem that wasn’t going away. Durin’s Bane was only a problem if you entered Moria, and even then you might never encounter it: Aragorn and Gandalf both avoided it the first time they entered. Thorin & Co. successfully tickled the tail of a sleeping dragon, but who wants to poke the bear?
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2018
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  19. Ron Simpson

    Ron Simpson Petty Dwarf

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    Having only just found this thread, I broached this said same question in another location ....oops !
     

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