The History of Weathertop – Lord of the Rings Lore

The History of Weathertop – Lord of the Rings Lore

The ruin of Weathertop, was long past its
days of glory, a shadow of what it once was, for it used to be a proud watchtower of Arnor
known as Amon Sul. Who built it, what was its purpose, and what
series of events led to its destruction. Hello friends it’s Karl here and in today’s
episode we’ll be exploring this ancient ruin, its purpose and history, from the days
of its glory to the start of the Fourth Age. When Elendil and his sons first arrived to
the shores of Middle-Earth in the year 3320 of the Second Age, they established two great
Kingdoms of Men, that of Arnor in the North and Gondor in the South. As they slowly settled in these new lands,
they built many great fortifications and cities, and these included the watchtower of Amon
Sul, which would later be known as Weathertop. Its height was immense; being around 1000
feet high for it was built on the tallest peak of the Weather Hills. It also happened to be located in the center
of the Kingdom of Arnor, and this along with its height gave it an incredible strategic
advantage, for it allowed its garrison to keep watch over the surrounding lands, and
so it comes as no surprise that the Tower of Amon Sul had a war beacon built upon it. Now the greatest and chief of the Northern
Palantiri was kept within this tower and it was so large that it couldn’t be lifted
by one man alone. This Palantir was primarily used to communicate
with the southern Kingdom of Gondor for it was the most powerful Palantir in the Northern
Kingdom. It is said that in the days of the Last Alliance,
Elendil had stood atop the tower of Amon Sul as he watched the western horizon for the
coming of Gil-Galad and his armies. Now the Kingdom of Arnor would remain united
for almost a thousand years, though this would end with the death of their 19h king, King
Earendur, in the year 861 of the Third Age, for after his death, all of his three sons
tried to claim the throne, and they fought against one another and so the kingdom of
Arnor was divided into three different factions, Arthedain, Cardolan and Rhudaur. All of these three kingdoms desired the Tower
of Amon Sul and the Palantir that was kept within it, for even though it was located
in the lands of Arthedain, it also happened to be close to the borders of Cardolan and
Rhudaur, and many wars were fought between these kingdoms for control over this tower. Despite all these battles, the Tower of Amon
Sul and the Weather Hills remained under Arthedain’s control, and the Kings of Arthedain kept a
special warden stationed at this tower to look after the Palantir. This civil war weakened these kingdoms, and
the Witch-King noticed this weakness and he saw it as an opportunity to eradicate what
remained of the kingdom Arnor. And so the Witch-King travelled to the Grey
Mountains where he established the realm of Angmar and he started to summon many evil
creatures, Orcs and Men to this land as he prepared for war. Now the line of Isildur would slowly die out
in the lands of Cardolan and Rhudaur, till none of his descendants were left in these
lands, and so the King of Arthedain named Argeleb tried to claim lordship over all the
lands of Arnor. The province of Cardolan respected and accepted
these claims, though the lands of Rhudaur resisted them, for they were very few Dunedain
left in this land and its rule had been seized by an evil lord of the Hill-Men. To make matters worse, Rhudaur entered a secret
alliance with the Witch-King of Angmar and together they planned to launch a sudden attack
upon Arthedain. Their attack would fail however, for Arthedain’s
King, King Argeleb had fortified the Weather Hills, and with these defenses he managed
to prevent Angmar’s forces from conquering the tower of Amon Sul, though Argeleb would
fall in one of these battles. After his death, his son named Arveleg, would
pick up the mantle of command, and with the help of Cardolan and the Elves of Lindon,
he led a counterattack and drove out Angmar’s forces from the Weather Hills. Though they were victorious, Argeleb foresaw
that that the attacks and threat of Angmar would persist, and so he set up a defensive
front near the Tower of Amon Sul and the borders of the Weather Hills, which managed to hold
off Angmar’s forces for around 50 years. Now the Witch-King still desired to conquer
Amon Sul and claim its Palantir, and in the year 1409 of the Third Age, he unleashed a
great force out of Angmar, surrounding Amon Sul and he breached its defenses. His armies defeated the Dunedain and slew
their king, and they destroyed the Tower of Amon Sul and burnt it to the ground. Yet their victory was not complete, for some
of the Dunedain had managed to retreat and escape with the Palantir before it could fall
into the Witch King’s hands and it was now safely kept in their capital of Fornost. If you’re interesting in learning more about
the fate of this Palantir, I covered it in great detail in my video on the Palantiri,
which I’ll be linking above. Now in the years to come, Weathertop would
remain abandoned and destroyed, a ghost of its former glory, and it was only occasionally
used by the rangers of the North as a temporary campsite. It still had a part to play in the War of
the Ring however, for after Gandalf escaped his imprisonment in Isengard, he travelled
to Bree to meet Frodo, though he would learn that Frodo had already set off towards Rivendell
accompanied by Aragorn. And so Gandalf travelled to Weathertop upon
Shadowfax, for he hoped to meet Frodo there, yet due to Shadowfax’ speed and Aragorn’s
detour, Gandalf outran the hobbits and he reached Weathertop before them, only to find
that the Nazgul were waiting upon its peak. For a while the Nazgul fled before him for
it was still day time and they were weakened by sunlight, yet as darkness fell, the Nazgul
surrounded Weathertop, and they had a fearsome battle with Gandalf atop its peak, that lit
up the nightsky with lightning and fire, and left the Summit of Amon Sul burnt and blackened
from this battle. Though this battle was hard fought, Gandalf
managed to hold off the Nazgul, and he set up a small cairn in the center of Weathertop
and marked it with a rune. He then fled Northwards hoping to draw some
of the Nazgul away, and his plan were successful, as four of the Nazgul chased after him, while
the other five remained close to Weathertop, watching and waiting. After Aragorn and the Hobbits reached Weathertop,
they found Gandalf’s message and learnt that he had been there 3 days before. There wasn’t much shelter for them in these
ruins, though there was a spring of clear water in its hillside, and its height provided
them with a vantage point to view the surrounding lands for any sign of danger. In fact while standing upon it they saw that
the Nazgul were slowly assembling at the bottom of the hill, and they hoped to use some firewood
that had been left behind by Dunedain Rangers, to set up a fire in case the Nazgul attacked,
for it was one of the few things they were afraid of. Once again the Nazgul waited until darkness
fell before they climbed the hill and slowly advanced upon Aragorn and the hobbits, and
their presence drove Frodo to long for the ring, and though he struggled, he was unable
to resist its call. As he slipped the Ring upon his finger, the
world around him grew dark, and he could see the Nazgul’s true forms beneath their robes
as tall white figures wearing crowns. Yet by wearing the ring, his presence became
known to the Nazgul, and their eyes fell upon him. The Witch King then approached Frodo and stabbed
him with a Morgul blade, and as Frodo started to pass out, he saw Aragorn leap out from
the darkness with a flaming brand of wood in each of his hands, which he used to scare
off the Nazgul. Now we’re never told if Weathetop was ever
restored to its former glory after Aragorn became King, and I’m not really sure if
that’s something I wish happened. Part of me likes to see as a symbolism of
the struggles of Arnor and the many sacrifices and wars of Men that had been fought for these
lands, and so perhaps leaving it in its ruined state, would serve as a better reminder of
all the sacrifices of the past, and of all those people that gave their lives for the
realm of Arnor. Before ending this video I’d like to discuss
two more points. So first of all I’d like to go over its
location in greater detail to give you a better understanding of the surrounding landmarks. So the Hill of Amon Sul was found on the southernmost
tip of the Weather Hills and its top was quite flat which made it easier to be built upon. It was located approximately halfway between
Bree and Rivendell with the old Road passing close to its Southern borders, and a large
marshland lay to the West known as the Midgewater Marshes. During the Fellowship of the Ring Aragorn
and the Hobbits travel through this marshland to avoid the Old Road which slows them down
significantly, and it’s one of the reasons why Gandalf had reached Weathertop before
them. The other point I’d like to mention is that
Amon Sul was Sindarin and its name meant the Hill of Wind. It was probably named so because its height
and geography would result in very strong winds atop its peak, though this is just my
own speculation. Finally I’m very excited to announce that
I’ve launched an instagram page for this channel, where I’ll be posting daily with
Lord of the Rings and other geeky content. I hope to use it as a way to promote the artists
whose work helps embellish these videos and bring them to life, and so I’ll be leaving
links to their websites along with a short paragraph giving insights on the events portrayed. I think it’s a fun way to have a little
bit more of Middle-Earth in our day to day lives, and learn some lore while we’re at. And so if you’d like follow us, just check
out the Instagram link that’s pinned in the comments or through the video description. I’d also like to thank you all, especially
my patreons, for the support you’ve shown in this channel. Our community has recently grown to over a
100 thousand subscribers which is amazing and I haven’t forgotten to make a special
video for it. I was thinking of doing another Q and A or
perhaps a live stream, so if you have any fun ideas for it or questions you’d like to
ask leave them in the comments below, and I’ll do my best to answer them in that video! Anyway friends this wraps up today’s video
and I hope you enjoyed it. If you’re interested check out our Facebook,
Twitter, Patreon, Discord and some of our Affiliate links in the video description,
and if you enjoyed this video leave a like, and subscribe to join our fellowship today! I hope to see you all in my next video where
together we’ll once again explore the magical world and lore of Middle-Earth.

61 thoughts on “The History of Weathertop – Lord of the Rings Lore”

  1. Hey guys, first of all I hope you've all had an awesome weekend! As always feedback is appreciated and subtitles are available.
    I'm sorry if it sounds like I go through puberty at one point during the video, but I had recorded parts of it on different days. ?
    As I mentioned in the video, here's a link to our new instagram account:

  2. without even watching i'm gonna say this video is worth watching, ❣?????
    thank you so much, i've had a lot of curiosity about "Weathertop" a curiousity that will vanish after watching this video of course ??
    thank you again Mellon, Namarie ?

  3. GeekZone has been a long time gone

    Person: Who is this person you pledged your service to?

    Me: *stops*…

    He was my friend.

  4. But weren't the the two kingdoms actually already kingdoms of elfish before they just turned up and went "yep these are ours"…

  5. I understand your comments about Weathertop but I think it would have been as strategically important to be rebuilt and would be a symbol of hope for the new realm

  6. A dislike? With all the work you put into these videos and the excellent quality of your work, this is proof trolls exist in our world as well.

  7. I love so much the small details you provide us that concern lotr and hobbit but arent mentioned in the movies.

  8. The 100k subs big question: Have Hobbits always had hairy soles or did they run out of shoes and there feet got rough and hairy? Or was it a Tom Bombadil trick or etc?

  9. Another amazing video from the marvelous GeekZone! If you decide to do a Q n A, my question is what was your inspiration for making the channel? Keep it up with the great videos!

  10. This is some amazing content! I’m just getting ready to publish my first dark epic fantasy novel. I love watching Tolkein’s works to inspire me.

  11. In my opinion, your channel is the best LOTR-channel on youtube. Again a great video. Thank you. Maybe you can create a video about Eru Iluvatar, next time? Greetings from Germany!

  12. It blows my mind how intricately detailed every part of Middle Earth seems to be. Everywhere is so rich with history and lore that it's hard to believe it's fiction. Another great video GZ, I forgot Weathertop had such a fascinating past…

  13. I love how every random thing in Tolkien's world has a rich history, even the random ruins you see for about 5 minuits

  14. I cannot avoid leaving new uploads. When there is a new one I just start watching it, what ever time it is; just like now 2 am ;D

  15. A strategic point like that for defense and the security of trade within the realm, I know history is important but a good and wise leader would preserve what artifacts they could for a museum and refortify that hilltop for the good of their people. More lives will be saved and lives more prosperous from a secure trade route then a powerful symbol like that

  16. I have a black obsidian crystal ball on my altar … a Palantír, if you will, but I'm a little bit scared to gaze into it, lest I see a burning, lidless eye gazing back at me…

  17. There are many craggy hilltops on the Llyn Peninsula, in Wales – some possibly ancient hill forts – which reminded me of Weathertop. It's a magical landscape…

  18. I love your videos, I'm a big fan of middle earth and love what you're doing. I have a question of the game Middle Earth: Shadow of War, and was wondering if it is part of Middle earth and it's history?

  19. I'm an insane Tolkien fan and I just wanted to say these videos you make are friggin' awesome and I really appreciate them✌?

    …the road goes ever on??

  20. Was the Witch King or even Sauron partially responsible for the outbreak of civil war in Arnor via corruption or persuasion?

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