Imladris ("deep valley of the cleft", Sindarin (from imlad ("glen, deep valley") and rist ("cleft") or riss ("ravine")), Rivendell in Westron (riven ("to tear apart or split") and dell ("valley")) was an elven settlement originally founded by Elrond as a military defense against the approaching forces of Sauron. The inhabitants were mainly Noldorin elves, and the languages spoken were Sindarin and Westron. Rivendell was founded in SA 1697 and eventually abandoned in the early years of the Fourth Age, as the last of its inhabitants left to journey into the west. It was also known as "The Last Homely House East of the Sea". The location of the settlement was well hidden, and Elrond's ring helped to keep it that way. Imladris was a place of learning and study rather than a fortress.