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Places in Middle-earth

Cair Andros

Type: Islands & Coasts

Region: Gondor

Meaning: Ship of Long Foam

Location: An island in the River Anduin, between Anórien on the western shore and North Ithilien on the eastern shore..

Description: So they came to a wide green land, and beyond it was a broad river in a silver haze, out of which rose a long wooded isle, and many ships lay by its shores. […]

For the Field of Cormallen, where the host was now encamped was near to Henneth Annûn, and the stream that flowed from its falls could be heard in the night as it rushed down through its rocky gate, and passed through the flowery meads into the tides of Anduin by the Isle of Cair Andros

The Return of the King, LoTR Book 6, Ch 4, The Field of Cormallen

[The] isle was shaped like a great ship, with a high prow pointing north, against which the white foam of Anduin broke on sharp rocks.

The Peoples of Middle-Earth, HoME Vol 12, Part 2, Ch 12, The Problem of Ros

It was Túrin that […] fortified again the isle of Cair Andros to defend Anórien.

The Return of the King, LoTR Appendix A, Annals of the Kings and Rulers: Gondor and the Heirs of Anárion: The Stewards

[The island was a strategic point for Gondor in the war against Mordor, because it was the only place except for Osgiliath at which large number of troops could easily cross the river at once:]

[Denethor says:] And the Enemy must pay dearly for the crossing of the River. That he cannot do, in force to assail the City, either north of Cair Andros because of the marshes, or southwards towards Lebennin because of the breadth of the River, that needs many boats.

The Return of the King, LoTR Book 5, Ch 4, The Siege of Gondor

[It is one of the crossing points used by the Rangers of Ithilien, although perhaps not the only one. It may be the principal route for messages, since a number of horses are kept on the Anórien bank. Faramir uses this route to return to Minas Tirith and, from his remarks, it appears there were only four horses available at the time.]

They named themselves Mablung and Damrod, soldiers of Gondor, […] Rangers of Ithilien […] who crossed the Anduin secretly (how or where, they would not say) to harry the Orcs and other enemies that roamed between the Ephel Dúath and the River.

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 4, Ch 4, Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit

[Faramir says:] Yestereve I lay at Cair Andros, the long isle in the River northward which we hold in defence; and horses are kept on the hither bank. As the dark drew on I knew that haste was needed, so I rode thence with three others that could also be horsed.

The Return of the King, LoTR Book 5, Ch 4, The Siege of Gondor

Contributors: Moriel 6.8.03, quote added by Lyllyn 1.30.04, further quotes and commentary added by Tanaqui 23Jan05

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