Host of the West marches north through Ithilien
Event Type: Military/Strategic
Age: 3rd Age - Ring War
Dates: March 20, 3019 ~ March 22, 3019
An event in the prelude to the Battle of the Morannon; see that entry for an overview:
The day after, being the third day since they set out from Minas Tirith, the army began its northward march along the road. It was some hundred miles by that way from the Cross-roads to the Morannon, and what might befall them before they came so far none knew. They went openly but heedfully, with mounted scouts before them on the road, and others on foot upon either side, especially on the eastward flank; for there lay dark thickets, and a tumbled land of rocky ghylls and crags, behind which the long grim slopes of the Ephel Dúath clambered up. The weather of the world remained fair and the wind held in the west, but nothing could waft away the glooms and the sad mists that clung about the Mountains of Shadow; and behind them at whiles great smokes would arise and hover in the upper winds.
Ever and anon Gandalf let blow the trumpets, and the heralds would cry: "The Lords of Gondor are come! Let all leave this land or yield them up!' But Imrahil said: 'Say not The Lords of Gondor. Say The King Elessar. For that is true, even though he has not yet sat upon the throne; and it will give the Enemy more thought, if the heralds use that name.' And thereafter thrice a day the heralds proclaimed the coming of the King Elessar. But none answered the challenge.
Nonetheless, though they marched in seeming peace, the hearts of all the army, from the highest to the lowest, were downcast, and with every mile that they went north foreboding of evil grew heavier on them.
The Return of the King, LoTR Book 5, Ch 10, The Black Gate Opens
Over the city of Gondor doubt and great dread had hung.... And no news came. After the host left Morgul Vale and took the northward road beneath the shadow of the mountains no messenger had returned nor any rumour of what was passing in the brooding East.
The Return of the King, LoTR Book 6, Ch 5, The Steward and the King
Elena Tiriel 6Aug06