Doriath was the realm of Elu Thingol, king of the Sindar, and of Melian the Maia, who protected the forest with enchantments and her own power, such that even Morgoth would not assail the forest. It was also the home of Melian and Thingol's daughter, Lúthien Tinúviel. The name Doriath, the Fenced Land, came from the Girdle of Melian that guarded the land, and the people of Doriath were called the Iathrim, the People of the Fence. Doriath was protected until the death of Thingol and the subsequent departure of Melian. The realm's capital was Menegroth.
In the later First Age, it was the site of tragedy and war. The forest was utterly destroyed in raging battles, and at last it sank to the bottom of the sea along with the rest of Beleriand as a result of the War of Wrath cataclysm.