Tolkien Gateway


One of the Púkel-men

Púkel-men were the ancient carved images, that lined the road to Dunharrow, the Stair of the Hold, in the White Mountains. One statue was standing in each turn of the winding road; each resembled a man with clumsy limbs, squatting cross-legged with his short arms folded across his fat belly.

These were carved by the ancient, long-forgotten men of the Second Age, perhaps related to the Oathbreakers, who populated the White Mountains. The statues were thought to be in the likeness of Woses or Drúedain, who also had made their homes there.[1] All had eroded over the years until some had no features except empty eye holes. The Rohirrim ignored the statues when they passed them.[2]

[edit] Etymology

The word púcel in Old English means "little goblin".[3] The element púc "goblin" is related to the name Puck and the modern English word "pug".[4]

[edit] Portrayal in adaptations

2003: The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King:

One or more of such statues can be seen near the scene where Elrond gives Andúril to Aragorn at Dunharrow.

2013: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug:

After Gandalf and Radagast leave the High Fells of Rhudaur, and discuss their realisation that the Necromancer of Dol Guldur is Sauron, there is a statue nearby.[source?]


  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, "The Drúedain"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Muster of Rohan"
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, "The Drúedain", note 14
  4. Jim Allan (1978), An Introduction to Elvish, Giving of Names, p. 219