Thousands of Dwarves vs one Balrog ?

Discussion in 'The Hall of Fire' started by Tumunzahar, Feb 13, 2004.

  1. Tumunzahar

    Tumunzahar Registered User

    If I understand correctly the whole of the Dwarf population fled from Khazad-dûm because of one Balrog. Surely they would have been able to kill it ? Dwarves might not be as powerful as High Elves but surely a few hundred Dwarves must have been able to kill one silly Balrog if Elves could slay them all the time in the wars of Beleriand ?
     
  2. Eriol

    Eriol Estel

    They didn't have the heart. Remember Gimli's reaction at the Bridge of Khazâd-dûm, when he let his axe fall to the ground. The Balrog apparently had a "super-Nazgûl" effect of provoking great fear in all except Maia and people like Boromir and Aragorn (remember that Boromir also faced the Nazgûl at Osgiliath).
     
  3. Lantarion

    Lantarion no house

    My theory on the matter is that Balrogs could not be killed by conventional means; how could they, because they are composed of nothing but fire and shadow??
    Therefore I hold that in order to slay a Valarauko the opponent must be able to interexist between and in both the Seen and Unseen worlds, in order to even be abl to harm the Balrog. And as the only beings to ever kill a Balrog were either very powerful Elves or Maiar, I find this theory to be pretty applicable. :)
     
  4. Ol'gaffer

    Ol'gaffer The Dawson

    The dwaves could have rigged the place so that the next time the balrog was on one of it's walks around Moria, the place would have caved in causing it to be trapped once again in the deep.

    But, the cowards did not do so.
     
  5. Morgoth

    Morgoth Bauglir

    Remember, firstly, as Lantarion constantly reminds us, that the Balrog is not a physical being, and making something collapse under it's feet requires some kind of magic, as Gandalf displayed at the Bridge of Khazad-Dum. And secondly, I personally believe that the Balrog was never trapped where it was before Durin delved too deep, and it was there out of it's own choice. This is because that the surviving Balrogs 'fled and hid themselves in caverns inaccessible at the roots of the earth'. The Balrog chose not to leave, for it was fearful that the Valar were still out to get it, and knew not of the fate of Arda Marred. It was only when it saw that it's only challenge were stout little men, that it realised that it could go up and whomp some Dwarven butt. Still, the Balrog did not leave Moria, save to ascend to Zirakzigil, as it was fearful of the outside world.
     
  6. Sharkey

    Sharkey seeker of solace

    How is the Balrog not a physical being? It requires an actual body to interact with the physical world.

    There was no 'magic' involved in the demise of Gothmog and Glorfindel's Balrog.

    A plausible theory, Lant, but I still prefer my own belief that the Balrogs and the Dwarves just couldn't whip up enough courage to face a terror such as the Balrog surely was. Among the Children of Ilúvatar, I think there were only a handful of those who had the heart to do what Glorfindel and Ecthelion did.
     
  7. krash8765

    krash8765 Registered User

    I agree with itrynluin that the dwarves couldnt defeat the balrog because they did not have the courage. When ecthelion defeated Gothmog didnt he kill him with his helmet driving it into his chest? I might be wrong about that but the fact is Balrogs must be physical creatures to be able to be killed. If the dwarves did not fear it so much then they might of been able to rally together and cut it down with their axes.
     
  8. Aulë

    Aulë The Larrikin

    You must remember that their 'idol' (second only to Mahal), Durin III was killed by the Balrog. Durin III, being Durin the Deathless reborn would have held very high regard with all the Dwarves, and to see him killed by the Balrog (perhaps in a 1 on 1 battle with it) would have crushed their hearts.

    The fire wouldn't have deterred them since Dwarves have high tolerance for pain, but probably the psychological effects of Durin's death would have made them cower in fear.

    Remember in the Battle of Unnumbered Tears: when King Azaghal was slain in the battle against Glaurung, the Dwarves of Belegost gave up the attack, and went into mourning instantly.
     
  9. Inderjit S

    Inderjit S Bootylicious

    It was Durin VI, not III.

    The Dwarves may have fought on for a few years after his death.
     
  10. Morgoth

    Morgoth Bauglir

    I meant, as Lantarion said, it exists between the seen and unseen worlds, much similar to the Army of The Dead.
    Once again, I referred only to the fact that if the Balrog is not a physical being as such, then making something collapse under it's feet would've been very hard. This 'magic' only applied to the case of the Moria Balrog, and not to the cases of Gothmog or Glorfindel's Balrog, and I do not dispute the fact that no magic as such was used to dispatch them.
     
  11. Lantarion

    Lantarion no house

    Then how do you explain an Elf, if he supposedly uses no inherent 'magic' or Art, or Skill, who exists completely in the Seen world being able to kill a being whose only tangible form in the Seen is ethereal?
    Yes you're right of course, and Valaraukar are physical beings, but only to an extent. To what extent if fire physical? It is not physical in the same sense that concrete or wood or linen cloth is physical, and yet it is viewable and tangible, ie.. it exists in the Seen. That is what the Balrog is, if we are to believe the traits assigned to the demons by Tolkien, that they were 'demons of fire and shadow'. There is no mention of any other matter, organic or othewise, as far as I recall.

    Now it would appear that there would be a hitch in this theory because of the Bridge of Khazad-dûm scene; how can something which is composed of shadow and fire 'fall' at all? Well, there are two possibilities:
    1) The Balrog actually did have more significant a physical form than just that of fire and shadow, a form which had a trait of mass and weight, or
    2) Gandalf's Ainuric/Istaric (haha) 'magic' caused the Balrog's form to plummet.
    I admit that option 1 seems the more plausible, at least to me; but that is not to say that balrogs were any easier to kill.
     
  12. Khazad

    Khazad Registered User


    I dont think that only powerfull beings could kill balrog. You needed a weapon that was able to do it. Not a normal steel sword could have harm balrog, but "magic" weapons could. They could be in both worlds at the same time. Well, of course you needed to be powerfull to be able to face balrog and resist balrogs magic or evil aura.

    Why dwarfs could not do it? If balrog was able to kill their best fighters, mayby they lost their corage. Also, balrog was not stupid, it could find a nice spot to protect it from attack of dwarfs, like only couple dwarfs per time attack, no missile weapons, etc. Balrog did not eat, not sleep, just wait and do harm when needed.
     
  13. Bombadillo

    Bombadillo Skipping right along

    you must remember that in the fifth battle, it were the dwarfs who withstood the forces of morgoth the longest, they fought draons, and where not afraid, while elves and men fled to their homes.
    Dwarves even wounded glaurung! they did save the day. I think that dwarves, in their thousends could have slaid the balrog. If indeed it did not kill durin.

     
  14. Lantarion

    Lantarion no house

    Bombadillo, you give compelling evidense for a position I also hold, that dragons are more easily to be wounded and killed than Balrogs. But what proof or indication do you have that the Dwarves could have done anything at all about the Balrog? If my theory is taken to be true (for the sake of argument), then I'd say that the Dwarves could have done nothing to harm the Balrog at all. They did not possess the skill of travel between the Seen and Unseen (evidently), and as far as I am aware they were not capable of producing 'magical' weaponry. They were, undoubtedly, the most skilled metalsmiths of all time, surpassing even the Noldor in many ways, and they were of course capable of creating the most finely crafted and high-quality weaponry imaginable. But high quality is not enough to kill an ethereal being with!
     
  15. Sharkey

    Sharkey seeker of solace

    Don't forget about Telchar, the greatest dwarven smith who wrought Narsil, Angrist and the dragon helm of Dor-lomin, all of which can be said to be 'magical'.
     
  16. Bombadillo

    Bombadillo Skipping right along

    erm, I think dragons are harder to defeat then balrogs, thinking about the amount of balrogs slain bij elves. there is only one story told about a dragon killed... and that is turin.
    the eagles dealt with the rest of the great worms.
     
  17. Sharkey

    Sharkey seeker of solace

    We know of three cases of Man slaying Dragon:

    Turin/Glaurung
    Fram/Scatha
    Bard/Smaug

    (And Eärendil/Ancalagon)

    Balrogs were slain by Ecthelion, Glorfindel and Gandalf - two High Elves and a Maia.

    I don't see any indication there that dragons were harder to defeat...more in favour of the Balrogs really.
     
  18. Lantarion

    Lantarion no house

    My reasoning exactly. :D
    And you have a point with Telchar.. But 'magic' is such an ambiguous matter in Arda in the first place, it's very hard to categorize. E.g. the type of 'magic' one wuld think to be found in 'enchanted' items would not be of the same kind as the inherent Art in all Quendi, because one was inherent and the other was artificial. It is an extremely open-ended issue. :eek:
    But as I recall, only Angrist of those three examples you give was magical..
    Narsil/Andúril was not magical as I recall, or it held no real magical qualities. It didn't even glow in the proximity of Dwarves, which many other swords did.
    The Dragon-Helm was also not that magical (again as I recall, which might well be incorrect), it was certainly fear- and awe-inspiring because it looked so fierce and extravagant.
    Angrist of course is an obvious exception, as it was the only blade which was fabled to cut through practically any material (after Gurthang?), and I really don't know what to say about that; except that perhaps there was no magic involved but perhaps Angrist was the peak of Dwarven weaponcraft and technology at that time, and was forged so cunningly that it was able to cut through metal.. Who knows. :D
     
  19. Sharkey

    Sharkey seeker of solace

    Which might as well be called 'magic' ;), as I doubt there was a multitude of swords such as Angrist.
     
  20. Bombadillo

    Bombadillo Skipping right along

    I don't see any indication there that dragons were harder to defeat...more in favour of the Balrogs really.

    in my quote is stated that the dwarfs stopped the dragons who had otherwise killed ALL of the Noldor in the war:
    this is in my opinion a strong evidence about, at least the strength of dwarves, and maybe also of the fact that dwarfs could have killed a balrog.
    In mty opinion if you killed of the phisical form of the balrog, you 'killed' him, or at least make him harmless, he would have to obtain a new body to physicly(damn sp, i'm tired) harm you (see gandalf, sauron). So no need of a 'magical weapon'
     

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