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History of the Éothéod
Earliest Days till the coming of
the Dark Plague

The name by which you know us here, Éothéod, is one given to us in the days of King Calimehtar of Gondor. But our history is far older than that. We are the descendants of the Northmen of Rhovanian and are of the same House of Men as the Dúnedain but our forefathers did not go west to fight with the Eldar. Instead they settled in the wide lands between the Misty Mountains and the River Running--known to the Elves as the Celduin. It flows down from the slopes of Erebor, the Lonely Mountain and to the southeast to its ending at the Sea of Rhûn.

For the long years of Middle Earth we were the friends of the kingdoms of the south and our very existence protected their long borders to the north and east. Our men were warriors of great skill and strength mounted upon horses we bred on the wide plains. Homes we built under the eaves of the Great Forest with our main settlements in the East Bight that our axes had done much to create. And we were content to have it so. In 1248 of the Third Age, Vidugavia, King of Rhovanian fought with King Minalcar against the Easterlings in a battle that extended the power of the Kings as far east as the Sea of Rhûn. The victory was so total that Minalcar took unto himself the name: Rómendacil -- "East Victor" -- the second King of Gondor to name himself as such. After this battle, so great was the friendship of our two peoples that Rómendacil sent his son, Valacar, to Vidugavia's Court to learn of us and our ways. It came to pass that Valacar and Vidumavi, daughter of Vindugavia, married and had a son who was called Vinitharya when young but grew and took the throne of Gondor as Eldacar in the year 1432. But this policy of Rómendacil II had not pleased all of the Dúnedain. The father had, in fact, been faced with rebellion among some parts the south of Gondor before he died in 1432 and when Eldacar came to claim his birthright, outright war came against him. For five years, Eldacar fought to hold what was his but in 1437, he was besieged in Osgiliath by his chief opponent Castamir. The city was burned and its palantír lost. Eldacar was forced to flee north to Rhovanian and to wait and watch. Castamir began his reign with the murder of Ornendil-the son of Eldacar-that had he had captured. For the next ten years (1437-1447) ruled Gondor with cruelty and arrogance.

In 1447, Eldacar lead an army drawn from our people south into Gondor and fought to regain his stolen throne. The people of Gondor, seeing their error, joined Eldacar and rebelled in turn against Castamir. The Usurper tried to run but Eldacar brought him to bay at the Crossings of Erui and Castamir was killed. And Eldacar took again his rightful place. And for many years, friendship existed again between peoples of Rhovanian and Gondor.

But then the Dark Plague came upon us in the year 1635 of the Third Age and more than half of our people and our horses sickened and died. Grievous was this to be for us for when the first of the Wainriders began to raid our lands two hundred years later in decades of the 1820s and 1830s of the Third Age. We had not had time to recover our full strength to hold them back. We were defeated and our lands overrun.

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Sources:

  • Unfinished Tales of Nûmenor and Middle Earth J.R.R. Tolkien, edited by Christopher Tolkien
  • The Return of the King J.R.R. Tolkien
  • The Complete Guide to Middle Earth, Robert Foster

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