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Places in Middle-earth

Undeeps, The

Type: Rivers & Lakes

Region: Rohan

Other Names
The North Undeep
The South Undeep

Location: The two great westward bends of Anduin, called the North Undeep and the South Undeep, between the Brown Lands and the Wold of Rohan.

Description: The wide lands south of Mirkwood, from the Brown Lands to the Sea of Rhûn, which offered no obstacle to invaders from the East until they came to Anduin, were a chief source of concern and unease to the rulers of Gondor.

Unfinished Tales, Part 3, Ch 2, Cirion and Eorl and the Friendship of Gondor and Rohan: The Ride of Eorl

In later days Gondor built a bridge over the upper Limlight, and often occupied the narrow land between the lower Limlight and Anduin as part of its eastern fences, since the great loops of the Anduin (where it came down swiftly past Lórien and entered low flat lands before its descent again into the chasm of the Emyn Muil) had many shallows and wide shoals over which a determined and well-equipped enemy could force a crossing by rafts or pontoons, especially in the two westward bends, known as the North and South Undeeps.

Unfinished Tales, Part 2, Ch 4, Appendix C, The History of Galadriel and Celeborn: The Boundaries of Lórien

But during the Watchful Peace the forts along the Anduin, especially on the west shore of the Undeeps, had been unmanned and neglected. After that time Gondor was assailed both by Orcs out of Mordor (which had long been unguarded) and by the Corsairs of Umbar, and had neither men nor opportunity for manning the line of Anduin north of the Emyn Muil.

Unfinished Tales, Part 3, Ch 2, Cirion and Eorl and the Friendship of Gondor and Rohan: The Ride of Eorl

In this peril Cirion's thought turned at last in desperation to the Éothéod, and he determined to send messengers to them. But they would have to go through Calenardhon and over the Undeeps, and then through lands already watched and patrolled by the Balchoth before they could reach the Vales of Anduin. This would mean a ride of some four hundred and fifty miles [from Minas Tirith] to the Undeeps, and more than five hundred thence to the Éothéod, and from the Undeeps they would be forced to go warily and mostly by night until they had passed the shadow of Dol Guldur.

Unfinished Tales, Part 3, Ch 2, Cirion and Eorl and the Friendship of Gondor and Rohan: The Ride of Eorl

Contributors: Elena Tiriel 22Jul04

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