The Passage of the Marshes

Track 4 - TTT


(2:40) Gollum leads Frodo and Sam into the Dead Marshes. The last part of this track is not used in the movie but was written to cover Frodo's underwater moment.


Two long, low notes (longer on the CD than in the movie) play as Gollum begins to lead the Hobbits into the Dead Marshes.


High strings crescendo over lower ominous notes. We see the aerial view of the marshes with the three travelers, tiny in perspective, moving through them.


The music pauses for a moment then...


...low, sustained notes begin. Gollum cautions the Hobbits to be careful or they go in to join the dead ones.


More wild, high strings crescendo as the Hobbits stumble along the uneven ground. A soprano voice slides a Sindarin syllable up the scale along with the strings.



The peak of the crescendo is reached and begins again. High strings saw up the scale along with a high voiced note as Frodo is captivated by the sight of a dead Elf in the water. He moves closer and closer as the strings are pitched higher and higher till.....


ngyrth sí


(The music from 1:03-1:59 is not in the movie but was scored for the scene were Frodo falls into the Marshes. more info)


A declamatory note sounds. (as the dead Elf opens his eyes).


A strong low melody is joined by a jumble of muttered voices (as Frodo falls into the water).


The melody begins to quiet and things wind down a bit to end in a.... (The hand of one dead thing reaches towards him as others behind him encircle him.)


ngyrth sí ú-lostar

Ú-chiriar îdh

Hiriar harch ring a nîd

Tano i óner

Io na ndagor veleg

Na dûr ben-galu, na naeth arvethed

Mín galad a chuil ban.

Mín sarch a ngurth ban. (till 1:36)

1:36 burst of noise and the voices stop. (Frodo is dragged out of the water by Gollum)


Hints of the Pity of Gollum theme play (as Gollum chides Frodo. Don't. Follow. The Lights!)


Three notes play. (If connected with the music just ending, it would be when Sam runs to Frodo. If connected to the music for the scene that follows here, it would be when Frodo calls out Sméagol's name after remarking he was not unlike a Hobbit once.)


The Pity of Gollum floats around ambiguously as Sméagol, startled to hear his name says, "What did you call me?"


The Pity theme hesitates while Frodo reminds him. "That was your name once."...


...but resumes with a stutter as Gollum stutters, "My... my name."


A more menacing tone sounds as he continues: "Ss.. ss.. Sméagol."


The Menace of Gollum Theme is played over deep percussion. (This is not in the movie but would fit well at the end of the Dead Marshes scene if started after the Black Rider has flown off and the camera moves back to Gollum: "Hurry Hobbits. The Black Gate is very close."


Lyrics 1:05 - 1:36 from The Dead Marshes (see note below about vocals)



[0:48] n

[0:51] gyrth


[0:59] ú-

[1:02] los (till 1:04)


This is sung by the  sopranos (and possibly the soloist). Each vocalist is singing the same ascending notes in each bar but at their own speed so as to create a aleatoric and slightly dissonant sound.

[1:07] to [1:36]

ngyrth sí ú-lostar

Ú-chiriar îdh

Hiriar harch ring a nîd

Tano i óner

Io na ndagor veleg

Na dûr ben-galu, na naeth arvethed

Mín galad a chuil ban.

Mín sarch a ngurth ban.


The choir is directed to either murmur or whisper randomly these words in a technique called Sprechstimme.






1-Foundations of Stone ~ 2-The Taming of Sméagol ~ 3-The Riders of Rohan ~ 4-The Passage of the Marshes

5-The Uruk-hai ~ 6-The King of the Golden Hall ~ 7-The Black Gate is Closed ~ 8-Evenstar

9-The White Rider ~ 10-Treebeard ~ 11-The Leave Taking ~ 12-Helm's Deep

13-The Forbidden Pool ~ 14-Breath of Life ~ 15-The Hornburg ~ 16-Forth Eorlingas

17-Isengard Unleashed ~ 18-Samwise the Brave ~ 19-Gollum's Song

TTT Closing Credits Music