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Places in Middle-earth

Cirith Ungol

Type: Mountains, Hills, Promontories

Region: Mordor/Allies

Meaning: Pass of the Spider

Other Names
The Cleft
The Morgul Pass
The Nameless Pass

Location: A pass through the Ephel Dúath, guarded by the Tower of Cirith Ungol.

Description: The Cleft, Cirith Ungol, was before him, a dim notch in the black ridge, and the horns of rock darkling in the sky on either side. ...
TTT, Book IV, Chapter 9 Shelob's Lair

The path was visible in the dusk a deep rut worn in ages of passage, running now gently up in a long trough with cliffs on either side. The trough narrowed rapidly. Soon Sam came to a long flight of broad shallow steps. Now the orc-tower was right above him, frowning
black, and in it the red eye glowed. Now he was hidden in the dark shadow under it. He was coming to the top of the steps and was in the Cleft at last.
TTT, Book IV, Chapter 10, The Choices of Master Samwise

"Do not go to Cirith Ungol!" [said Faramir.]

"Where then shall I go?" said Frodo. "...What do you know against this place that makes its name so dreadful?"

"Nothing certain," said Faramir. "We of Gondor do not ever pass east of the Road in these days, and none of us younger men has ever done so, nor has any of us set foot upon the Mountains of Shadow. Of them we know only old report and the rumour of bygone days. But there is some dark terror that dwells in the passes above Minas Morgul. If Cirith Ungol is named, old men and masters of lore will blanch and fall silent.

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 4, Ch 6, The Forbidden Pool

But still [Shelob] was there, who was there before Sauron, and before the first stone of Barad-dûr; and she served none but herself, drinking the blood of Elves and Men, bloated and grown fat with endless brooding on her feasts, weaving webs of shadow; for all living things were her food, and her vomit darkness.

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 4, Ch 9, Shelob's Lair

Contributors: Lyllyn 6.0403; add Shelob quotes & links: Elena Tiriel 30May04; added Names: ET 7Oct04, 25Aug05

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