As author J.R.R. Tolkien once said of writing his Middle-earthian books, “I wisely started with a map.” So, over the past couple of weeks, Amazon too started promoting its forthcoming The Lord of the Rings series by releasing a series of maps. While they sparked a lively debate from fans about what they all mean for the series, the time period setting is now confirmed.
“Welcome to the Second Age,” Amazon tweeted on Thursday morning.
A long-standing theory posited the series would focus on a younger Aragorn, played in Peter Jackson’s films by Viggo Mortensen. However, that character, the future ruler of Gondor, was born during the Third Age. So we can nix that rumor right now.
The Second Age is also known as “The Age of Númenor.” Fans will notice that, in the most recently updated map for the Amazon fantasy epic, the island of Númenor is shown in the bottom left corner.
It’s not yet clear whether Númenor will serve as a major setting for Amazon’s The Lord of the Rings, though its presence already answers some questions.
Númenor is considered a mythic lost city of men in the world of Middle-earth, one established on an island in the Great Sea that had been destroyed for thousands of years by the time of Frodo and Aragorn. In The Second Age, according to Tolkien lore, it was said that the island was brought up from the ocean as a gift to men by the Valar (the gods of Middle-earth). The kingdom would later fall after they defy the laws of the deities.
The Second Age also sees the development of the Elven City of Rivendell, the Dark Lord Sauron famously forging the dark Ring of Power, and the races of elves, men, and dwarves all uniting to fight him for the first. The period spans about 3,441 years, so there’s a lot of ground to potentially cover.