Moria is a city of dwarves of ancient times, originally called Khazad-dum, which means “The Dwarf Fortress”. Located under the Misty Mountains, it is full of mines and underground passages. It was founded by King Durin I, and throughout its history Moria, the city-state of the dwarves, developed and grew rich thanks to the rich deposits of mithril in its mines. And thanks to the cooperation with the elves, it became even more beautiful. In the First Age, the battles of Beleriand didn’t touch the city, so it was not attacked by orcs.
After the War of Wrath, when Beleriand was destroyed, dwarves began to flock to Moria from the destroyed cities. They enriched it numerically, and also brought the secrets of masonry and blacksmithing. Gradually, the city became larger; it occupied the entire foothill area of the Misty Mountains. It was also time to cooperate with the people of Anduin and the elves from Eregion. Sauron captured and destroyed the land of the elves, despite the military support of the dwarves. After that, the friendship with the elves ended, and the gates of Moria were closed to isolate themselves for many years from external threats.
But thousand years of prosperity ended in the Third Age, when a nameless terror from the mines that went deeper and deeper into the mountains. The terror brought death to Durin VI and his son Nain. There was a version according to which it was Sauron who contributed to the awakening of the ancient evil – balrog, doom and fate of Durin the Deathless. The name of a founder of the family and the city-state of the dwarves, Durin I, was used even after his death. He was incarnated in the descendants, who were also called Durin. After the death of their leader, the dwarves could not get rid of the balrog and left Moria, the city that brought death to Durin the Deathless.
Moria “The Lord of the Rings” by J. R. R. Tolkien
The abandoned city was deserted, became uninviting and empty of with the Balrog hiding in the depths. For years, it became a haven of horror and darkness, and the elves called it Moria, (“Black Abyss” in Sindarin). Orcs settled in the city. The dwarves tried to settle Moria with Balin as a leader, who had accompanied Bilbo Baggins during his journey to Erebor. But they didn’t get success as Frodo Baggins, Gandalf and other members found out many years later. Forced to cross the city of Moria, they fought the orcs, learned the fate of Balin from his diary, and faced the balrog. Near the ruins of the East Gate of Moria Gandalf fought with the balrog and defeated him.
Only after having expelled the underground monster,the dwarves returned to Moria and settled it. This happened already during the reign of Durin VII, who led his people to restore their homeland.