27 December 2011

365 Days of Middle-earth ~ Day 180: Osgiliath


Osgiliath (S. ‘Citadel of the stars’) was the first capital of Gondor, founded in 3320 SA. Built between Minas Anor and Minas Ithil, it was burned during the Kin-strife in TA 1432; the Dome of Stars, its greatest building, was ruined. Also lost was the chief Palantír, which had previously been kept in Osgiliath. During the Great Plague of TA 1636, many of the inhabitants died, and those who had survived refused to return after fleeing the city. By 1640, Osgiliath had been replaced by Minas Anor as Gondor’s chief city.

Osgiliath was taken by the Uruks of Mordor in TA 2475 and later reclaimed by Boromir, though by then the city was in ruin; during the War of the Ring, Osgiliath was again attacked, and the eastern half of the city taken by Sauron’s forces. The western half of the city was defended by the Rangers of Ithilien the following year (TA 3019), but was ultimately captured. There was no record of the city being rebuilt during the Fourth Age.

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