Military Organization of Gondor (Expanded)

Geography and organization For mobilizing its armies, Gondor uses a beacon system. This system is similar to that of Byzantine Empire, which had a line of beacons stretching from eastern Anatolia to Constantinople. System stretched 400 miles, with beacons set 30 to 60 miles apart; signal would travel the line in an hour. When beacons... Continue Reading →

Military Organization of Mordor

Armies of Mordor Issue of free will and discipline Orcs are sometimes believed to not have free will, but this appears to be incorrect. Witch-King commands with fear, which would be unnecessary if orcs had no free will at all: "His own folk quail at him, and they would slay themselves at his bidding.". Even... Continue Reading →

Navy in Middle-Earth

Introduction Despite not featuring prominently, navy and naval operations play a significant role in Tolkien's Middle Earth. In the First Age, elves of Feanor come to Middle Earth from Valinor across the sea; their kinsmen, who had been forced to use the land route, suffer terribly. In the last battle of the Age, host of... Continue Reading →

Denethoring the Lannisters

(Originally posted at Forum of Ice and Fire) In war between Gondor and Mordor we see (in the books, not so much the movies) outright Byzantine layered defense-in-depth strategy. Now, the entire point of defense-in-depth is our old friend friction. As Clausewitz explains, anything we do encounters friction, that is things which make achieving our goals... Continue Reading →

Military organization of Gondor

There is not much detail regarding military structure and organization of Gondor in Lord of the Rings, as Tolkien set out to write an epic, not a history book. Yet a lot can be gleamed about it from careful reading and comparison with Tolkien's historical sources. Almost all we know of military organization of Gondor... Continue Reading →

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