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


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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 1997-2021. All rights reserved. For conditions of reuse, see the Site FAQ.

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Featured Entry


A village of the Shire's Eastfarthing

A village on the Shire's eastern border, built on the banks of the river Brandywine. It lay at the southern end of the Causeway that ran southward from the Brandywine Bridge through the boggy Marish region of the Eastfarthing. Deephallow lay a little way northward of the point where the river Shirebourn met the Brandywine. At that point there was a landing place for boats, the Mithe, from which the Mithe Steps led up towards the village of Deephallow.

Directly eastward from Deephallow across the Brandywine, the Bucklanders' Hedge of the High Hay reached its southern extent at Haysend. At that point another river, the Withywindle, flowed into Brandywine out of the Old Forest. This meant that Deephallow saw two tributary rivers (the Shirebourn and the Withywindle) both empty into the Brandywine on the fringes of the village. Because of these inrushing rivers, the land southward of Deephallow formed a wide region of wetland, the Overbourn Marshes.

The Encyclopedia of Arda
The Encyclopedia of Arda