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Timeline Event

Ents flood Isengard

Event Type: Military/Strategic

Age: 3rd Age - Ring War

Date: March 4, 3019

Description:

An event in the Destruction of Isengard by Ents; see that entry for an overview:
'[The Ents] gathered round Treebeard.... He spoke to them for a little in their own language... telling them of a plan he had made.... Then they just faded silently away in the grey light. Day was dawning by that time....

'All that day they were busy, out of sight.... Every now and then we could hear in the distance the rattle and fall of stone, and thudding noises echoing in the hills.

'In the afternoon we... went to have a look at what was going on. There was a great shadowy wood of Huorns at the head of the valley, and another round the northern wall. We did not dare to go in. But there was a rending, tearing noise of work going on inside. Ents and Huorns were digging great pits and trenches, and making great pools and dams, gathering all the waters of the Isen and every other spring and stream that they could find....

'At dusk Treebeard came back to the gate. He was humming and booming to himself, and seemed pleased.... I asked him if he was tired.

'"Tired?" he said,... "Well no, not tired, but stiff. I need a good draught of Entwash. We have worked hard; we have done more stone-cracking and earth-gnawing today than we have done in many a long year before. But it is nearly finished. When night falls do not linger near this gate or in the old tunnel! Water may come through — and it will be foul water for a while, until all the filth of Saruman is washed away.".... He began to pull down a bit more of the walls, in a leisurely sort of way, just to amuse himself.

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 9, Flotsam and Jetsam

They were come to the feet of the Misty Mountains, and the long arms of Nan Curunír stretched down to meet them. Dark lay the vale before them.... But out of the deep shadow of the dale rose a vast spire of smoke and vapour; as it mounted, it caught the rays of the sinking moon, and spread in shimmering billows, black and silver, over the starry sky.

'What do you think of that, Gandalf?' asked Aragorn. 'One would say that all the Wizard's Vale was burning.'

'There is ever a fume above that valley in these days,' said Éomer: 'but I have never seen aught like this before. These are steams rather than smokes. Saruman is brewing some devilry to greet us. Maybe he is boiling all the waters of Isen, and that is why the river runs dry.'

'Maybe he is,' said Gandalf. 'Tomorrow we shall learn what he is doing.'....

The king and his company slept no more that night; but they saw and heard no other strange thing, save one: the voice of the river beside them suddenly awoke. There was a rush of water hurrying down among the stones; and when it had passed, the Isen flowed and bubbled in its bed again, as it had ever done.

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 8, The Road to Isengard

'It must have been about midnight when the Ents broke the dams and poured all the gathered waters through a gap in the northern wall, down into Isengard....

'Isengard began to fill up with black creeping streams and pools. They glittered in the last light of the Moon, as they spread over the plain. Every now and then the waters found their way down into some shaft or spouthole.... Smoke rose in billows. There were explosions and gusts of fire. One great coil of vapour went whirling up, twisting round and round Orthanc, until it looked like a tall peak of cloud.... And still more water poured in, until at last Isengard looked like a huge flat saucepan, all steaming and bubbling.'....

'[Saruman] was probably choking and not laughing any more. By... yesterday morning, the water had sunk down into all the holes, and there was a dense fog. We took refuge in that guardroom over there; and we had rather a fright. The lake began to overflow and pour out through the old tunnel, and the water was rapidly rising up the steps. We thought we were going to get caught like Orcs in a hole; but we found a winding stair at the back of the store-room that brought us out on top of the arch. It was a squeeze to get out, as the passages had been cracked and half blocked with fallen stone near the top. There we sat high up above the floods and watched the drowning of Isengard. The Ents kept on pouring in more water, till all the fires were quenched and every cave filled.'

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 9, Flotsam and Jetsam

Contributors:
Elena Tiriel 1Feb05, 5Feb05

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