Théodred counterattacks Saruman in the 1st Battle of the Fords of Isen
Event Type: Military/Strategic
Age: 3rd Age - Ring War
Date: February 25, 3019
The first event in the First Battle of the Fords of Isen; see that entry for an overview:
Saruman's attack was not unforeseen, but it came sooner than was expected. Théodred's scouts had warned him of a mustering of troops before the Gates of Isengard, mainly ... on the west side of Isen. He therefore manned the approaches, east and west, to the Fords with the sturdy men on foot from the levies of Westfold. Leaving three companies of Riders, together with horse-herds and spare mounts, on the east bank, he himself passed over with the main strength of his cavalry: eight companies and a company of archers, intending to overthrow Saruman's army before it was fully prepared.
But Saruman had not revealed ... the full strength of his forces. They were already on the march when Théodred set out. Some twenty miles north of the Fords he countered their vanguard and scattered it with loss. But when he rode on to attack the main host the resistance stiffened. The enemy was in fact in positions prepared for the event, behind trenches manned by pikemen, and Théodred in the leading éored was brought to a stand and almost surrounded, for new forces hastening from Isengard were now outflanking him upon the west.
He was extricated by the onset of the companies coming up behind him; but as he looked eastward he was dismayed. It had been a dim ... morning, but the mists were now rolling back ... and away east of the river he descried other forces now hasting towards the Fords.... He at once ordered a retreat.
Unfinished Tales, Part 3, Ch 5, The Battles of the Fords of Isen
Elena Tiriel 5Feb05