The Battle of the
Crossing of Poros
Chapter 7: The Battle Begins
November 26, 2005
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The sons of Folcwine decided to split the army into
two groups: Archers and Non-archers. The Non-archer groups included the
entire eored of the sons of Folcwine and
Hallas. The Archer group included all of the archers in the host. The
archers under Ceorl, who himself was the surest archer of the Rohirrim,
and a man coming from Ithilien, were to guard the road leading to
Endost just a few leagues north of the place where the road from Endost
met with the road from Lebinnin. They were to guard the place in case
the Haradrim escaped the guard and invaded Ithilien, until
arrived. The rest were to move south until they reached the fords or
encountered the Haradrim. Fifty riders along with Gundor were to ride
Harost to order reinforcements for the guards of the fords. The host of
Ceorl began to prepare dikes and trenches to prepare their defense of
the road while Gundor and his men set out for Harost saying, “A
star shines on the time of our departure”, and they went off in a cloud
dust as they sped towards the Harost that lay on the Northwestern side
of the Belegond. It was the fortress at which Earnil, the later king of
Gondor, hid his forces when the First Invasion of the Haradrim took
place. He decided to surprise the Haradrim by leaving the fords
unguarded and then ambushing them in Ithilien. With this he utterly
routed the Haradrim. He kept all his forces in Harost, which was forty
miles from the crossings of Poros.
sons of Folcwine sounded the charge horn as the eored of Fastred,
Folcred and Hallas left the camp and rode south to the fords even
they would reach it only at the dawn of the 15th of March.
had sent two scouts to the fords to inform the guards of the fords that
the hosts of the Rohirrim were coming. They camped near the place where
the road from Endost met with the road from Lebinnin. At two hours past
dawn they set up camp. Just when they finished setting up and had been
sleeping for six hours, during which Hallas and the sons of Folcwine
were in deep counsel, the scouts returned unexpectedly and
“When we were going south, we came in sight of the Poros. We saw the
of the river filled with corpses of men. They were strewn all over the
bank of the river. They were mostly the corpses of the men of Gondor.
The two camps set up by the men of Gondor were destroyed to rubble…but
the Haradrim were nowhere in sight. No man was found alive north or a
few miles south of the Poros. There may be five-thousand men dead on
the banks of the river”
The leaders all stood up and exclaimed “WHAT!”
The scouts said “’Tis true. But we have seen naught
of the Haradrim save
their corpses. It is a mystery. A real mystery. Who will solve the
riddle for us?”
Folcred said, “ If what ye say is true; methinks
that the Haradrim had just enough
host to defeat the guards of the Poros. After the battle they had too
few left for an invasion of Gondor. So they retreated.”
Fastred said, “But they would not have come a long
way just to defeat the guards of
the Poros and leave. They came to invade Gondor. So they must have
brought a large force here. The guards of the river alone could not
defeated them. They might have gone north-west or east for some reason.”
said, “But they were not sighted till yester eve. So they came just
after the scouts departed to Endost. They quickly defeated the guards
and went off…somewhere. But whether East or West or South we do not
The scouts asked: “What do you counsel us to do now?”
Fastred replied, “We must muster our folk quickly.
Many in this camp are
asleep. We must wake and muster them and make them ready for battle.
Summon the horns of Galdor. Muster the host. Awaken the Marshals.
Meanwhile, ye scouts will go north immediately and send word to Ceorl.
Bring help from the Harost if you can. Take fresh horses. Go north
swiftly! Lest we perish. It may take Ceorl almost eight hours to reach
here, for there are quite a few leagues between us, and his riders
be resting, but muster and hasten them here nevertheless” The riders
immediately set off.
“Now I curse myself for sundering our army. For now they would serve
great use against the Haradrim if they attack us now. We should have
never left the fastness of Endost or come afar from the Harost. Woe is
I. We should have never come here unaided.”
Unaided…those words bought back the dream in
But Fastred gave instructions for the ordering of
leaders quickly sent word to wake everyone of the Host and to make them
prepared as the others were setting up defenses. Two hours before dawn,
when they were almost ready, the watchers to the south spotted the
bright flames of
torches. They tolled the bells and the host held back their
panic and arranged themselves to their respective eoreds
in the plain. They prepared to do battle, for the sons of Folcwine
ordered them to do battle and not flee in the pride of their hearts
against the counsel of Hallas.
they refused to flee for they thought they would be overtaken or would
have to do battle at a disadvantageous position, and, if they lived,
would have to live as cowards who fled. They could not understand, like
many, the concept of fleeing and fighting another day for they believed
there was no ‘another day’.
The eored were positioned only half fittingly for
they had little time to organize.
But they were near. Near enough to discern that the
bearers of the flames were not men of Gondor, but not enough to discern
what they were doing. The eored of Hallas was on the right of the
eored of Fastred, and the eored of Folcred was left of the eored of
Fastred. Meanwhile the sons of Folcwine were giving their pep talk to
the whole Host: “Men of Gondor and Rohan. Prepare for battle. Prepare
for war. Prepare to defend your homeland. Men of Gondor, though you
fight under an alien lord, the glory you reap shall be yours alone. Men
of Rohan, though you fight on an alien field, the glory you reap shall
be yours alone. Beware, the Host you shall fight are merciless. Though
the watchers estimate that there are about four-thousand in the Host,
you shall fight the enemy till death. Now forth for lord, land, light
and league of friendship”
Then all the charge horns in the entire host burst
into music and the spears of the Rohirrim gleamed like stars in the red
glares of their fires. The whole host burst into a chorused war cry.
The captains and Marshals began to ride. The eored of the sons of
Folcwine thundered forth. But Hallas was commanded not to charge until
the host of the sons of Folcwine had broken through the lines of the
Their eoreds thundered on
with Folcred, Folcwine, and Adrahil at their head as Hallas watched.
The whole of their eored arranged themselves as an arrow that would
break the armour of the enemy. The host crashed into the enemy driving
them with fear and surprise of the might and splendor of their
knighthood. They drove through the enemy like a stampede in a meadow.
All those infantry caught in the onslaught were killed.
But then the cavalry of Rohan encountered a new
threat. It was almost dawn and with the dim light of dawn they saw
something they had not expected…. Cavalry of the enemy, arranged in all
their desert attire with horses like ugly beasts, some thousand were
charging at them. Then the sons of Folcwine sounded their horns and
charged against their southern counterparts. There was a great clash,
but the Sons of Folcwine came off the better due to the skill of their
knighthood. But still they met with losses.
Hallas sounded his horn of charge and all of his
eored blazed across the grass to meet the enemy, as was customary to
surround the enemy and attack from both sides.
In the growing light Hallas was watching the eored
of the sons of Folcwine, as he turned his eyes further north and the
sight he saw blinded, astounded, quailed and almost killed him…
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