Insane FA riddle


This FA riddle is on the Wiki site and numerous different answers have been tried, with no success. It cannot be right that we have the best of the ME brains on this forum and we cant answer this riddle. So we need more brain power, please help :slight_smile:

Could the answer be: Belegost ?

Before the extinguishing of the light
before the coming of the Darkest Dark
it arose as mighty sight
til the flood did render it start.

Failed answers: Almaren, Numenor, Hyarmentir, Ezehollar, Two Pillars, Utumno, Meneltarma, Tol Eressea, Avallone, Taniquetil, Thangorodrim.

Tolkien described two floods. The one that destroyed Numenor (that is why you have all the Numenor related possible answers). The other flood destroyed Beleriand during the War of Wrath against Morgoth. Belegost was also destroyed in the War but that happened before the flood.

Well for starters when the riddle was first typed in, it obviously had a typo – the last word should be stark, not start. You can’t render anything start. But you can render it stark, plus that rhymes with dark! :smile: Stark in this context means: severe or bare in appearance or outline.

I hope that helps; I’ll have to do more research to find something that was rendered bare or severe in appearance or outline.


OK, how about Isengard? The Ents flooded it, or at least all around it, and rendered it stark in the middle of the barren lands that had once held his armies etc. Not sure if it arose as a mighty sight before the extinguishing of the light and the coming of the Darkest dark, anyone know?


Woops or maybe I meant Orthanc – Jeremy

Well, the exact date of construction of Orthanc and establishment of Isengard is unknown; however it must have been built between second age 3320, the time of the establishment of Arnor and Gondor and Second age 3430, when the Last Alliance of Elves and Men was formed.

This was before Saurons time in the third age, what is the “extinguishing of the light” ?

how 'bout this…

Before the extinguishing of the light

  • the Lamps of the Valar, made by Aule. Illuin and Ormal

before the coming of the Darkest Dark

  • before Melkor came to overthrow the Lamps in both the north and south

it arose as mighty sight

  • “more lofty far than are any mountains of the later days.”

til the flood did render it start

  • the site of Illuin later became the Inland Sea of Helcar.

Scott’s guess = illuin

Feels like a reach to say that the lamp was rendered stark. Hmmm.

Darkest dark.could refer to Ungoliant; and the mighty sight could be the Two Trees of Valinor, though that’s not really an “it”? But still, mayybe “Two Trees” or “Valinor Trees” ?



I agree that the answer of the northern lamp “illuin” could be an good answer ? But why not the name of the other lamp “Ormal” ?

Here is some text I have found which describes the flooding, when Melkor destroyed the lamps…

According to older writings not used in the published The Silmarillion, the Valar wanted peace with Melkor, and decided to ask his assistance: they wished to fix the lamps upon Arda’s ground. Melkor, black with hate and envy of the rest of the Valar, agreed to help. He gave Aulë a substance which was both sturdy and strong: ice, which was unknown to the Valar. Melkor bided his time and allowed the Valar to do as they wished until the fateful day when the Lamps’ light and heat melted the ice and crashed upon Arda, flooding it with water and darkness.


I think I have a better solution to this riddle: “Helcar”

Helcar was the name of a great tower upon which the mighty lamp Illuin sat.

Helcar was raised by the Valar to house the northern of the Two Lamps, Illuin. It was placed in the north of Middle-earth, and together with the southern lamp Ormal lit up all of Arda. Helcar was destroyed by Melkor in an attack while the Valar rested from their labors, and collapsed with devastating consequences to the world. This ruined a great part of Middle-earth, and waters (probably from Belegaer and the eastern ocean) flowed in. Later here was formed the inland Sea of Helcar. The heat of Illuin then melted Helcar, and the meltwater of this tower formed the Sea of Helcar.

I have to say though, that if it is ANY of these latter suggestions, (besides Orthanc), it is pretty darn obscure compared to any other riddle I’ve run across.

What about Ered Engrin - the Iron Mountains that were raised by Melkor prior to the destruction of the two lamps.

I don’t have access to all my books, but I ran across a note online stating that " The western extent of the Iron Mountains, where Angband stood beneathThangorodrim, were destroyed by the assault of the Valar and the inrushing sea at the end of the First Age"

Have we made any progress on this? Does the riddle say ‘say one word’ or 'say one or two words"? I passed it along to a group steeped in esoterica and their best guess was Two Lamps, which would be more in line with the difficulty level of most riddles.


I have encountered this riddle in one of my games with the text:

“The essence of power seems to await just a one or two word answer to the riddle…What word(s) or name will XXXX SAY”

One of the sentences in the riddle says:
…it arose as a mighty sight…

The two lamps are located in two different places and thereby not “A site”, so I cant see that as a correct answer.

Ered Engrin is a large mountain area which was raised by Melkor. The riddle says…“before the coming of the Darkest Dark”…so I cant see this as a the correct answer as well.

I will try with the answer “Helcar” and let you know :slight_smile: