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Artist © John Howe

Meaning of Name: 'She-spider'
Otherwise Known As: Shelob the Great, Her Ladyship
Date of Birth: Unknown but probably sometime in the First Age
Date of Demise: Unknown, but survived until the Fourth Age
Dwellings: Torech Ungol, in the Mountains of Shadow
Height: Unknown
Alignment: Evil
Parents: Ungoliant
Siblings: None
Spouse: None
Children: Numerous, including the spiders of Mirkwood
Physical description: A great spider like creature

Nothing much is known of Shelob until the year 1000 in the Second Age, when she made her lair in the Mountains of Shadow, high in the pass that was to be named Cirith Ungol.But Shelobs lair was known as Torech Ungol.It is thought she might have fled here from Beleriand, to escape it's ruin in the War of Wrath.

     "There agelong she had dwelt, an evil thing in spider-form, even such as once of old had lived in the Land of the Elves in the West that is now under the Sea, such as Beren fought in the Mountains of Terror in Doriath, and so came to Lúthien upon the green sward amid the hemlocks in the moonlight long ago. How Shelob came there, flying from ruin, no tale tells, for out of the Dark Years few tales have come. But still she was there, who was there before Sauron, and before the first stone of Barad-dûr; and she served none but herself, drinking the blood of Elves and Men, bloated and grown fat with endless brooding on her feasts, weaving webs of shadow; for all living things were her food, and her vomit darkness. Far and wide her lesser broods, bastards of the miserable mates, her own offspring, that she slew, spread from glen to glen, from the Ephel Dúath to the eastern hills, to Dol Guldur and the fastnesses of Mirkwood. But none could rival her, Shelob the Great, last child of Ungoliant to trouble the unhappy world."

     "And as for Sauron: he knew where she lurked. It pleased him that she should dwell there hungry but unabated in malice, a more sure watch upon that ancient path into his land than any other that his skill could have devised. And Orcs, they were useful slaves, but he had them in plenty. If now and again Shelob caught them to stay her appetite, she was welcome: he could spare them. And sometimes as a man may cast a dainty to his cat ("his cat" he calls her, but she owns him not) Sauron would send her prisoners that he had no better uses for: he would have them driven to her hole, and report brought back to him of the play she made. 

     So they both lived, delighting in their own devices, and feared no assault, nor wrath, nor any end of their wickedness. Never yet had any fly escaped from Shelob's webs, and the greater now was her rage and hunger."  The Two Towers

It wasn't until the year 2980 in the Third Age,Shelob encountered Gollum.But they wouldn't meet again until the year 3019,on March 11, when Gollum promised her fresh meat.It wasn't until the next day that Gollum led Frodo and Sam to her, and on the 13th she stung and wrapped Frodo in her web, but she was then attacked by Sam, who cut off one of her claws and stabbed one of her many eyes, then sliced her underbelly. Shelob then tried to crush Sam, only for Sam to thrust Sting into her belly.Sam then held the Phial of Galadriel, and Shelob fled blind and in agony.Nothing is known of her after this.


                            Spiders of Mirkwood

Contributed by Gwahir

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