Places in Middle-earth
Bridge of Tharbad
Type: Fords, Bridges, Crossings
Location: The bridge where the Great North-South Road crossed over the Gwathló near the river-port city of Tharbad; built in the Second Age, the early years of Arnor and Gondor; it had fallen into ruins by the late Third Age.
Description: But the great North-South Road, which was the chief route of communication between the Two Kingdoms except by sea, ran through it [Enedwaith] from Tharbad to the Fords of Isen (Ethraid Engrin). Before the decay of the North Kingdom and the disasters that befell Gondor, indeed until the coming of the Great Plague in Third Age 1636, both kingdoms shared an interest in this region, and together built and maintained the Bridge of Tharbad and the long causeways that carried the road to it on either side of the Gwathló and Mitheithel across the fens in the plains of Minhiriath and Enedwaith. A considerable garrison of soldiers, mariners and engineers had been kept there until the seventeenth century of the Third Age. But from then onwards the region fell quickly into decay; and long before the time of The Lord of the Rings had gone back into wild fenlands. When Boromir made his great journey from Gondor to Rivendell ... the North-South Road no longer existed except for the crumbling remains of the causeways, by which a hazardous approach to Tharbad might be achieved, only to find ruins on dwindling mounds, and a dangerous ford formed by the ruins of the bridge, impassable if the river had not been there slow and shallow -- but wide.
Unfinished Tales, Part 2, Ch 4, Appendix D, The History of Galadriel and Celeborn: The Port of Lond Daer
Contributors: Elena Tiriel 23Sep04