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This article is about the fortress. For the place in Mordor, see Udûn.

Utumno, also named Udûn, was the first fortress of Melkor in the far north of Middle-earth, before the First Age.


Utumno was carved very deep into the flesh of the Earth by Melkor himself. Through time, much of the subterranean domain had been cast from obsidian, fire, and ice beneath it.[1]


During the time of the Lamps, before the First AgeMelkor first dug the great Pits of Utumno deep beneath the mountains of the North. The fortress was constructed here in the Iron Mountains (over one thousand miles from the later location of Angband) where the light of the lamps did not reach.[1]

Here Melkor gathered to him all the evil powers of the World. Creatures were also bred here such as trolls, "made in mockery of the Ents" as stated by Treebeard. Cruel spirits, phantoms, wraiths, and evil demons stalked the halls of Utumno and haunted the surrounding forests.

From Utumno, Melkor poisoned and interfered with all the Valar's work done during the Spring of Arda. Soon afterwards, Melkor and his servants waged his war and struck down the lamps, ruining the world, and forcing the Valar to move further west to the continent of Aman.[3]

Utumno endured for millennia well into the early years of the Elves at Cuiviénen during the Years of the Trees. Taking advantage of the new arrivals, Melkor captured some of them and thus, the hideous race of Orcs was bred. Knowing that Melkor would continue to be a blight upon the world, the Valar decided to protect the Elves by ending his power in the north. Amidst the sounding of the trumpets, the Valar came out of the west, and after the Battle of the Powers Utumno was besieged and destroyed in VY 1099[2], and Melkor was chained for about three thousand years.[4]


Utumno is Quenya word for "Underworld", also known as Udûn (Sindarin for 'Hell').[5]

Earlier versions of the legendarium

Earlier texts referred to Utumno as the Fortress of the North[6] or Utumna.[7]

Also, its location had once been north of the Iron Mountains rather than within them.[8]


Foreign Language Translated name
Amharic ዑቱምኖ
Arabic أوتومنو
Armenian ՈՒտումնո
Belarusian Cyrillic Утумно
Bengali ঊতুম্ন
Bulgarian Cyrillic Утумно
Chinese (Taiwan) 烏圖姆諾
Chinese (Mainland) 乌图姆诺
Chinese (Hong Kong) 烏塔莫
Georgian უტუმნო
Greek Ουτούμνο
Gujarati ઊતુમ્નો
Hebrew אוטומנו
Hindi ऊतुम्नो
Japanese ウトゥムノ
Kannada ಊತುಮ್ನೊ
Kazakh Ұтұмно (Cyrillic) Utumno (Latin)
Korean 우툼노
Kyrgyz Cyrillic Утумно
Macedonian Cyrillic Утумно
Marathi ऊतुम्नो
Mongolian Cyrillic Утумно
Nepalese ऊतुम्नो
Pashto وتومنو ?
Persian اوتومنو
Punjabi ਊਤੁਮ੍ਨੋ
Russian Утумно
Sanskrit ऊतुम्नो
Serbian Утумно (Cyrillic) Utumno (Latin)
Sinhalese යුටුමෝ
Tajik Cyrillic Утумно
Tamil ஊதும்நொ
Telugu ఊతుమ్నొ
Thai อูทุมโน
Ukrainian Cyrillic Утумно
Urdu وتومنو
Uzbek Утумно Cyrillic) Utumno (Latin)
Yiddish וטומנאָ

Places of Middle-earth and Arda

Middle-earth Locations:


Dunland | Ithilien | Rohan | Arnor | Ettenmoors | Gondor | Lindon | Minhiriath | Rhûn | The Shire | Mordor | Harad | Forochel

Forests & Mountains:

Amon Dîn | Amon Hen | Amon Lhaw | Caradhras | Emyn Muil | Erebor | Fangorn Forest | High Pass | Iron Hills | Lórien | Mirkwood | Mount Doom | Old Forest | Tower Hills | Weather Hills


Angband | Barad-dûr | Bree | Caras Galadhon | Dol Guldur | Fornost | Hornburg | Isengard | Minas Morgul | Minas Tirith | Orthanc | Osgiliath | Rivendell | Umbar | Utumno


Cair Andros | Gap of Rohan | Grey Havens | Buckland | Enedwaith | Dagorlad | Dead Marshes | Fords of Isen | Weathertop | Argonath

The rest of Arda:

Númenor | Dark Land | Aman | Valinor | Tol Eressëa