The Doors of Durin were built in the dark cliffs of the Silvertine mountain and protected the entrance to what became the goblin-realm of Moria, once the Dwarven kingdom of Khazad-dûm.

The doors were notable for being inlaid with ithildin, which only reflected starlight or moonlight.


Second Age

Until the Second Age, the primary entrance to Khazad-dûm had been the East-gate. In the friendship between the Elves and the Dwarves, however, the doors were built as a means to aid travel and trade between Khazad-dûm and the elven kingdom of Eregion. Celebrimbor, the great elven-smith, and the dwarf Narvi were the architects, and worked together to create the doors. Later, during the War of the Elves and Sauron, the doors were sealed after Eregion fell to Sauron's forces.[1]

Darrell Sweet -The West-Door of Moria

Depiction of Gandalf and others at the Door of Durin by Darrell Sweet

Third Age

The way of opening the Doors was forgotten, and they were closed. After the death of Balin, Lord of Moria, five of the dwarves who had accompanied him tried to use the doors to escape the Orcs; however, the Watcher in the Water killed Oin here and the dwarfs could not escape this way. During the Quest of the Ring, the Fellowship approached the Doors and attempted to enter Moria from there. At first, Gandalf was unsuccessful at opening them. The inscription was a riddle: "speak friend and enter." The answer was a password in an Elvish language that would cause the Doors to swing open. Gandalf eventually solved the riddle, remembering the Elven word for friend, Mellon.[2]
Moria gate

The inscription on the door to Moria

When entering, the Watcher in the Water grabbed Frodo's ankle to drag him into the lake. Sam slashed the tentacle with his knife, causing it to release Frodo and retract. The Fellowship then ran into the mines while The Watcher slammed the Doors behind them. A great noise was heard of stone and rock being thrown behind the Doors, and Gandalf believed that the two great holly trees on either side had been uprooted and thrown across them.[3]After the fall of Sauron, the Dwarfs reoccupied Khazad-dûm; it is unknown if the Doors of Durin were repaired.

Translations around the world

Foreign Language Translated name
Afrikaans Deure van Durin
Albanian Dyer të Durinit
Arabic أبواب دورين
Azerbaijani Durin'in qapıları
Basque Durineko ateak
Belarusian Cyrillic дзверы Дурін ?
Bulgarian Cyrillic Врати на дурин
Catalan Portes de Durin
Croatian Vrata Durina
Danish Døre af Durin
Dutch Deuren van Durin/Poorten van Durin
Esperanto Pordoj de Durin
Estonian Durin uksed
Fijian Katuba ni Durin
Filipino Mga Pintuan ng Durin
Finnish Durinin ovet
French Portes de Durin
Frisian Doarren fan Durin
Galician Portas de Durin
German Türen von Durin
Greek Πόρτες του Ντουρίν
Hawaiian Nā puka o Durin
Hebrew דלתות דורין
Hungarian Durin kapuja
Indonesian Pintu-pintu Durin
Italian Porte di Durin
Japanese ドゥリンの扉
Latvian Durin durvis
Lithuanian Durin durys
Macedonian Cyrillic Врати на Дурин
Malagasy Ny varavaran' ny Durin
Malaysian Pintu Durin
Maltese Bibien ta ' l-Durin
Mongolian Cyrillic Дурин-ийн хаалга
Nepalese डोरिनको ढोका
Norwegian Dører av Durin
Occitan Pòrtas de Durin
Persian درب دورین
Polish Drzwi Durina
Portuguese Portas de Durin
Romanian Usi de Durin
Russian Двери Дурин
Samoan O faitotoa o Durin
Scottish Gaelic Dorsan Durin
Serbian Врата Дурина (Cyrillic) Vrata Durina (Latin)
Sesotho Liholo ea Durin
Sinhalese ඩුරින් ගේ දොරටු
Slovak Durinova brána
Slovenian Vrata Durin ?
Somalian Galka ee Durin ?
Spanish Puertas de Durin
Swahili Milango ya Durin
Swedish Durins Dörrar
Tamil டூரின் கதவுகள்
Turkish Durin'in kapılar
Uzbek Дурин эшиклари (Cyrillic) Durin eshiklari (Latin)
Vietnamese Cửa ra vào của Durin
Welsh Drysau o Durin
Yiddish טירן פון דורין
Yucatec Maya Jóol u Durin


  1. The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B
  2. The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, Book Two, Ch. IV: "A Journey in the Dark"
  3. The Complete Guide to Middle-earth
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