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Paths of the Dead by breath-art Paths of the Dead by breath-art

Paths of the Dead

The way is shut.
It was made by those who are Dead.
And the Dead keep it.
The way is shut.
Until the time comes. 

At the end of the Second Age, their king, known as the King of the Mountains, pledged allegiance to Isildur at the Stone of Erech. However, these Men later refused to aid Isildur in his war against Sauron; they came to the aid of neither side, but instead hid in the mountains. They had previously worshipped the Dark Lord during the Dark Years. As punishment, Isildur cursed them, saying that they would not have peace or rest till they fulfilled their oath upon his command or that of his heirs.

Their spirits haunted the caverns beneath the Dwimorberg, the Haunted Mountain, and the valley of Harrowdale that lay in its shadow—though they were said to appear in the valley only in times of trouble or death, haunting the hill of the Stone of Erech.

Malbeth the Seer prophesied that a day would come when need and haste would drive one of Isildur's heirs to take the Paths of the Dead and that the Dead would answer to his call. Thousands of years later, in the final years of the Third Age, that prophecy was fulfilled. In the War of the RingAragorn, Isildur's heir and direct descendant, called upon the Dead, summoning them to the stone of Erech, and commanded them to fulfil their oath and be free. On this occasion, he first uses the royal banner of Gondor, made by Arwen and delivered to him by Halbarad and the Grey Company.

They followed him through Gondor's lands and fiefs south of the Mountains, and at the port of Pelargir they drove away the Corsairs of Umbar, allies of Sauron. Their oath fulfilled, Aragorn granted them their freedom, and they vanished at last from the world. After this, Aragorn gathered the warriors of the region to him. They sailed to Minas Tirith on the Corsairs' own ships, and turned the tide at the Battle of the Pelennor Fields.

Add a Comment:
muradtlawey Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
AnjuraDeawena Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2015
This is amazing, will you make it available for purchase (:
Dragongurls Featured By Owner Jan 6, 2015
Finds this picture while watching the scene where Aragon walk into the mountain to find his army. impressed and enjoyed to find such brilliant work for lord of the rings.
Zeonista Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2014
I don't think I could say enough good things about this composition. Well done! Clap Clap Clap 
noleme Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014
Great stuff. Love that you included poor Baldor in the composition.
Flane-kanja Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Especially great design with this one :) Amazing stuff.
Oskrosu Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2014
excelente representacion
intervil Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2014
Amazing Clap 
TheARBL Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014
Love the way you've represented the Paths as a skull!
Astral-Muffin Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014  Student Digital Artist
Good Lorr, you never cease to amaze me!
Nortstar Featured By Owner Jun 22, 2014
it is totaly awsome :)
MyNameIsPol Featured By Owner Jun 22, 2014
Absolutely fantastic! :D
RFabiano Featured By Owner Jun 22, 2014  Professional General Artist
Freaking awesome new piece!
harrylee94 Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Brilliant. As always. Love it!
Fractaldragon Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2014  Professional Artisan Crafter
Stark and clever design! I never tire of your wonderful Tolkien art!
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Submitted on
June 21, 2014
Image Size
4.8 MB


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