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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
in (PJ's middle-earth) orcs can venture out into sunlight...
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MouthofSauron
Tol Eressea


Apr 14 2013, 7:57pm

Post #1 of 26 (1049 views)
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in (PJ's middle-earth) orcs can venture out into sunlight... Can't Post

It seems to be that according to PJ's middle-earth orcs are capable of being out in the sunlight, at the end of AUJ, Azog and company were clearly under the light of the sun when they found Thorin & company. In TTT, the uruk-hai meet up with orcs when running from Aragorn. So...it seems the goblins in the misty mountains and the goblins in Moria are the only "breed of goblins" who are unable to endure sunlight?? Maybe they don't have the SPF +110 like the others Wink


take me down to the woodland realm where the trees are green and the elf women are pretty....Oh will you please take me home!!


QuackingTroll
Valinor


Apr 14 2013, 8:25pm

Post #2 of 26 (728 views)
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Orcs can endure the sunlight in the books too... [In reply to] Can't Post

But it makes them weak and makes their "heads giddy". They're just stronger in the dark. Misty Mountain goblins, being more used to the dark caves, understandably dislike the light even more than other orcs, that's all.


(This post was edited by QuackingTroll on Apr 14 2013, 8:27pm)


QuackingTroll
Valinor


Apr 14 2013, 8:29pm

Post #3 of 26 (701 views)
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Interesting thing about the orcs in TTT [In reply to] Can't Post

Why do they start a camp at night if this is when they're stronger? Shouldn't they camp in the daytime?


dik-dik
Lorien


Apr 14 2013, 9:10pm

Post #4 of 26 (667 views)
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Re: orc camp in TTT [In reply to] Can't Post

My reasoning for them camping at night would be that they were just too exhausted at that moment to go any further. Moving through such a patrolled and dangerous territory as Rohan, I'd probably hasten under some semblance of shelter as well if I were an Orc, day or no day. The grassy plains were simply too dangerous to stay long at - that at least is my reading.

"A journalist once asked me what I would like my epitaph to be and I said I think I would like it to be 'He did very little harm'. And that's not easy. Most people seem to me to do a great deal of harm. If I could be remembered as having done very little, that would suit me." ~ Paul Eddington


MouthofSauron
Tol Eressea


Apr 14 2013, 10:56pm

Post #5 of 26 (572 views)
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Haha!!! [In reply to] Can't Post

Good point!!! Never thought of this!


take me down to the woodland realm where the trees are green and the elf women are pretty....Oh will you please take me home!!


emre43
Lorien

Apr 15 2013, 7:21am

Post #6 of 26 (469 views)
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If memory serves me correctly [In reply to] Can't Post

The book only says orcs 'don't like' travelling in sunlight rather than they can't.


Elthir
Gondor

Apr 15 2013, 5:14pm

Post #7 of 26 (438 views)
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Tolkien's orcs under the sun [In reply to] Can't Post

As noted, there are examples of Tolkien's orcs running or fighting under the sun. Some examples are...

A) the lesser Northerners run hour after hour under the Winter Sun -- despite that they are 'cooked' when other orcs catch up to them, they run rather notably well after complaining that they can't [run under the Sun]. Chapter The Uruk-hai.

B) the Mordorians, same scenario, as above. At one point they drop back, yes -- but it was noted in the text that it was not known if this was due to lesser hardiness [than Saruman's Uruks], or due to a plan.

3) The Uruk-hai, same scenario as above [as I would argue that it is not a given fact that Tolkien's Uruk-hai have mannish blood, so they can be well trained orcs. Uruk-hai means 'Orc-folk' according to Tolkien himself].

F) I would argue that Sauron's orcs seem very ready to continue the fight before Minas Tirith -- after the Sun is revealed -- when they think the newly arrived ships are a stroke in their favor.

7) possible Silmarillion scenarios that I haven't looked into, admittedly.

H) the same scenario as A again, as some of the larger bolder Northerners remain with Saruman's Uruks at one point, and then appear to run just as well as these uruks do [at least they are never noted as lagging or anything].


Maybe ignore 7 until someone looks into it Wink


(This post was edited by Elthir on Apr 15 2013, 5:19pm)


MouthofSauron
Tol Eressea


Apr 16 2013, 2:02am

Post #8 of 26 (366 views)
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thanks for the info! [In reply to] Can't Post

good to know.


take me down to the woodland realm where the trees are green and the elf women are pretty....Oh will you please take me home!!


dik-dik
Lorien


Apr 16 2013, 11:07am

Post #9 of 26 (375 views)
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Re: Silmarillion orcs and sunlight [In reply to] Can't Post

As far as I recall, they prefer the dark and like in LotR, their senses are keener in it, which combined leads to most of their activity taking place in the dark to give them advantage (attack on Barahir's camp, attack on Amon Rudh). They were aghast at the rising of the Sun. But they seem to have no issues launching major attacks at sunrise in the Fall of Gondolin and the Nirnaeth. It seems like sunlight didn't affect them all that seriously.

"A journalist once asked me what I would like my epitaph to be and I said I think I would like it to be 'He did very little harm'. And that's not easy. Most people seem to me to do a great deal of harm. If I could be remembered as having done very little, that would suit me." ~ Paul Eddington


Elthir
Gondor

Apr 16 2013, 2:04pm

Post #10 of 26 (353 views)
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external concerns [In reply to] Can't Post

For me the problem with using The Fall of Gondolin is that Tolkien never really updated the long prose version [at least] of this tale and battle. He began it of course, and in the updated start, if I recall correctly, Tuor and Voronwe come upon some Orc camps in the evening, which might not really reveal all that much [though perhaps another reference can be found here]...

... so maybe JRRT might have tried to consider something here for the Orcs had he got to the main battle -- which also brings up the possibly interesting question: where or when in the external history of the texts is the first reference to orcs having any sort of problem under the Sun?

As distinct from hating it and preferring darkness.


However the Nirnaeth [Children of Hurin version] is a different case in any event, given its date, and it does seem to imply that the orcs do not need night, nor a covering of clouds or smoke, to do battle. Early in the chapter it is noted that: '... towards Thangorodrim, and there was a dark cloud about it and a black smoke went up; and he knew that the wrath of Morgoth had been kindled and that the challenge would be accepted, and a shadow of doubt fell upon his heart.'

But this smoke does not appear to be a cover for the battles, and on the fifth day the armies of Angband fought until day, but when day came the battle continued on, and ultimately: 'Thus ended the Nirnaeth Arnoediad, as the Sun went down beyond the Sea.'

And it was even said [The Grey Annals version] '... and the Orcs hewed their heads and piled them as a mound of gold; for the sun was shining on the [fourth >] sixth and last/day of the battle and their yellow locks shone amid the blood. Last of all Hurin stood alone...'


That said, Tolkien himself never published any of these descriptions. Back to the other hand [again], he did write them, and seemingly after the concept was introduced [again when I wonder, initially in The Hobbit or earlier?], and we have some examples from The Lord of the Rings itself, as noted.


(This post was edited by Elthir on Apr 16 2013, 2:14pm)


Salmacis81
Tol Eressea


Apr 16 2013, 4:28pm

Post #11 of 26 (336 views)
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Uruk-hai [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
The Uruk-hai, same scenario as above [as I would argue that it is not a given fact that Tolkien's Uruk-hai have mannish blood, so they can be well trained orcs. Uruk-hai means 'Orc-folk' according to Tolkien himself].

In the case of the Mordor Uruks (such as Shagrat), it is never made clear of what stock they were from, only that they first appeared towards the end of the 3rd Age. The Isengard Uruk-hai were almost certainly a result of a man/orc breeding program intitiated by Saruman, as were the "half-orcs" like the squint-eyed southerner the hobbits encounter in Bree. This was only speculated on in the LOTR books, but in Morgoth's Ring Tolkien stated that it was clearly his intent. I'm not aware of him reversing course on that at some point (which he sometimes did), but who knows.


Rostron2
Gondor


Apr 16 2013, 9:55pm

Post #12 of 26 (297 views)
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That's it exactly... [In reply to] Can't Post

It's a PJ parallel universe with slightly altered rules. I could quibble about the orcs not being very affected by daylight, but in the long run, it doesn't really matter. It's hard to show that without lame dialogue like 'arr cursed sun!!!' and so forth. To his credit, PJ did something with the orcs (and goblins) that I like. They can speak clearly (and have those Londoner/Cockney accents and so they seem more intelligent and cunning than they would appear...


Elthir
Gondor

Apr 16 2013, 10:27pm

Post #13 of 26 (325 views)
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Uruk-hai [In reply to] Can't Post


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The Isengard Uruk-hai were almost certainly a result of a man/orc breeding program intitiated by Saruman, as were the "half-orcs" like the squint-eyed southerner the hobbits encounter in Bree.




I think the half-orcs certainly were the result of interbreeding, as even the name suggests in my opinion. I don't agree with almost certainly about the Uruk-hai however: this term means 'orc-folk' and to me they seem like larger, well trained orcs.



Quote
This was only speculated on in the LOTR books, but in Morgoth's Ring Tolkien stated that it was clearly his intent. I'm not aware of him reversing course on that at some point (which he sometimes did), but who knows.




Hmm, I don't recall Tolkien clearly stating, in Morgoth's Ring or anywhere [so far anyway], that the Uruk-hai were the result of breeding Men and Orcs. He clearly stated that Saruman bred Orcs with Men, yes; but as I say, in my opinion these are the Half-orcs...

... who might also be referred to as 'orc-men' or 'men-orcs' [half one term, half the other, so to speak]


(This post was edited by Elthir on Apr 16 2013, 10:29pm)


Salmacis81
Tol Eressea


Apr 16 2013, 11:09pm

Post #14 of 26 (296 views)
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The name "uruk-hai" was not specifically mentioned... [In reply to] Can't Post

in Morgoth's Ring in that paragraph, but he talks about "man-orcs" and "orc-men". And then putting that together with what was speculated in LOTR about the Isengard Uruk-hai being part mannish, and you have some pretty convincing stuff pointing to the Isengard Uruk-hai having been part of Saruman's breeding orcs and men. Again, not totally explicit, but pretty damn close.


Dlanor da Great
Rivendell


Apr 17 2013, 12:40am

Post #15 of 26 (287 views)
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I think they were suppose to be running non stop for 3 days and they only stopped because a couple Orks were complaining. besides that it seems like their intentions was to keep going. [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Elthir
Gondor

Apr 17 2013, 6:00pm

Post #16 of 26 (288 views)
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Morgoth's Ring [In reply to] Can't Post

I can't agree it's close Smile


As you note Tolkien does not use the term Uruk-hai in the Morgoth's Ring citation [which term was easily available however, having already been coined and published before the essay in question], and JRRT himself notes that it means 'Orc-folk' so it would possibly not do really. Again the terms for the result of interbreeding are half one thing, half the other: half-orcs.

Why seemingly two terms? I think it's because we have [generally speaking now] two notable 'kinds' of Half-orcs: mannish enough looking ones to serve as spies among Men, and the man-high goblin-faced Half-orcs described by Merry [Aragorn calls them Half-orcs, and they seem distinguished from the Uruk-hai].


So why add the Uruk-hai? I don't see a compelling enough reason to add them. If you are referring to Treebeard's speculation, at one point he states: 'Are they Men he has ruined, or has he blended the races of Orcs and Men? That would be a black evil!'

Treebeard does not know what Saruman has done of course, he asks. And he hits upon a correct notion, but these can easily be the Half-orcs. A goblin-faced 'half-orc' would very arguably be an orc to Treebeard [and to other folk I would think], also noting what the Ent says to Merry and Pippin about possibly mistaking them for little orcs.

The Uruks first appear out of Mordor, and ultimately Saruman had some in his service of course... some of them boast that they eat man-flesh, but they are never stated [so far] to be part man... and them being larger, well trained orcs fits perfectly with the terms Uruk(s) or Black Speech Uruk-hai.




(This post was edited by Elthir on Apr 17 2013, 6:10pm)


Salmacis81
Tol Eressea


Apr 17 2013, 7:25pm

Post #17 of 26 (281 views)
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Uruk-hai [In reply to] Can't Post

The name "Uruk-hai" was the name that the Isengard Uruk-hai gave to themselves, it was not necessarily a name that others would have used to describe them. Treebeard likely would not have known of the term "Uruk-hai", and like you said, all orcs would likely look similar to Treebeard, so there's no reason to think he would differentiate, even between Uruk-hai and smaller orcs. Also, Treebeard refers to the "Isengarders" being able to withstand the sun much better than other orcs, which is what led him to speculate that Saruman cross-bred orcs and men. Why wouldn't "Isengarders" include Saruman's Uruk-hai? (for whom the previous chapter was even named)

Also, Tolkien uses both "men-orcs" AND "orc-men" in the very same sentence in Morgoth's Ring, which would imply that they are not quite treated as the same thing, even though they may have the same origins. Here is the quote - "There is no doubt that long afterwards, in the Third Age, Saruman rediscovered this, or learned of it in lore, and in his lust for mastery committed this, his wickedest deed: the interbreeding of Orcs and Men, producing both Men-orcs large and cunning, and Orc-men treacherous and vile." In my mind, it would not be a stretch to think that the "half-orcs" that Merry and Pippin noticed in Isengard were the "Orc-men", or more mannish-looking brothers, of the "Man-orcs", or Isengard Uruk-hai. If you notice, the "half-orcs" that Merry and Pippin saw were described as "sallow-skinned and squint-eyed", much the same way that the orcish-looking southerner in Bree was described, and he was obviously mannish-looking enough to serve as a spy in Bree.

The first instance of Uruks appearing was fairly late in the third-age, during a raid on Osgiliath about 500 or so years before the War of the Ring. So even IF Saruman's Uruk-hai are originally from Mordor, that still doesn't necessarily rule out the idea that Sauron might have bred the Uruks into existence. And since men are always described as being larger than elves and orcs, breeding orcs with evil men would certainly produce larger offspring on average than just breeding orcs.

Anyway, there's no 100% definitive answer either way, so you and I are going to have to agree to disagree. Here is an interesting website that deals with this matter. Anyone else interested in this can make up their own minds after reading the evidence for or against the idea.


http://stason.org/...ruk-hai-Tolkien.html


(This post was edited by Salmacis81 on Apr 17 2013, 7:32pm)


Elthir
Gondor

Apr 18 2013, 12:19pm

Post #18 of 26 (235 views)
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more on the Uruks [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
The name "Uruk-hai" was the name that the Isengard Uruk-hai gave to themselves, it was not necessarily a name that others would have used to describe them.




Well the name Uruk-hai 'Orc-folk' was Black Speech and would naturally enough be assumed as a term hailing from Mordor. And hai- meaning 'folk' seems a general plural, and I see no reason to restrict such a general name as 'Orc-folk' to only Saruman's Orc-folk.

More generally, uruks are distinguished from snagas, yes -- or [arguably] the Uruk-hai from the *Snaga-hai or 'Slave-folk', as uruk was a word to distinguish the greater soldier orcs from lesser kinds [Appendix F].



Quote
Treebeard likely would not have known of the term "Uruk-hai", and like you said, all orcs would likely look similar to Treebeard, so there's no reason to think he would differentiate, even between Uruk-hai and smaller orcs. Also, Treebeard refers to the "Isengarders" being able to withstand the sun much better than other orcs, which is what led him to speculate that Saruman cross-bred orcs and men. Why wouldn't "Isengarders" include Saruman's Uruk-hai? (for whom the previous chapter was even named).




As you say, Treebeard is merely generalizing and doesn't know. The question is, why should the reader [who meets both these spies and these goblin-faced half-orcs] include Saruman's Uruk-hai when we know it means Orc-folk and there are other beings who fit Treebeard's speculation perfectly?





Quote
Also, Tolkien uses both "men-orcs" AND "orc-men" in the very same sentence in Morgoth's Ring, which would imply that they are not quite treated as the same thing, even though they may have the same origins. Here is the quote - "There is no doubt that long afterwards, in the Third Age, Saruman rediscovered this, or learned of it in lore, and in his lust for mastery committed this, his wickedest deed: the interbreeding of Orcs and Men, producing both Men-orcs large and cunning, and Orc-men treacherous and vile."




The two terms are half one thing half the other, with the terms switched: a perfect way to describe more mannish looking half orcs [spies] as distiguished from Merry's 'goblin faced' version.

If Treebeard didn't know the term Uruk-hai certainly Tolkien did, but it wasn't employed here and its meaning doesn't fit.



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In my mind, it would not be a stretch to think that the "half-orcs" that Merry and Pippin noticed in Isengard were the "Orc-men", or more mannish-looking brothers, of the "Man-orcs", or Isengard Uruk-hai. If you notice, the "half-orcs" that Merry and Pippin saw were described as "sallow-skinned and squint-eyed", much the same way that the orcish-looking southerner in Bree was described, and he was obviously mannish-looking enough to serve as a spy in Bree.




Well your 'or Isengard Uruk-hai' is the question here. Merry had first hand knowedge of the Uruk-hai, but he never specifically calls the Uruk-hai 'Man-orcs' as you do here.

And I agree that the half-orcs can be generally broken down into spies and those who were too orkish looking -- but these were 'goblin' faced' rather, and as Merry notes: And there were battalions of Men, too. (...) Most of them were ordinary men, rather tall and dark-haired, and grim but not particularly evil-looking. But there were some others that were horrible: man-high but with goblin-faces, sallow, leering, squint-eyed. Do you know, they reminded me at once of that Southerner at Bree; only he was not so obviously orc-like as most of these were.'

'I thought of him too,’ said Aragorn. ’We had many of these half-orcs to deal with at Helm’s Deep.’ Flotsam And Jetsam



Quote
The first instance of Uruks appearing was fairly late in the third-age, during a raid on Osgiliath about 500 or so years before the War of the Ring. So even IF Saruman's Uruk-hai are originally from Mordor, that still doesn't necessarily rule out the idea that Sauron might have bred the Uruks into existence. And since men are always described as being larger than elves and orcs, breeding orcs with evil men would certainly produce larger offspring on average than just breeding orcs.





That's more speculation in any case, as your 'might' emphasizes. Large Orcs being bred with large orcs would produce larger orcs, and Tolkien never [to date] notes that Sauron bred orcs with Men to produce the Uruks.



Quote
Anyway, there's no 100% definitive answer either way, so you and I are going to have to agree to disagree. Here is an interesting website that deals with this matter. Anyone else interested in this can make up their own minds after reading the evidence for or against the idea.




For myself I was well aware that some believe that the Uruk-hai are the result of Saruman's breeding program. However above you said this idea was 'almost certainly' the case, and then again 'pretty damn close' however, and that is what I have been disagreeing with.

And there is more evidence for argument -- for both sides -- than presented in this article [that you linked to], which notably does not include Tolkien's explanation of the meaning of Uruk-hai in any case, and arguably needs updating in that regard at least.

Nor do I agree with this article's phrasing concerning the word uruk actually, but I'll leave it at that for now Smile


(This post was edited by Elthir on Apr 18 2013, 12:24pm)


Elthir
Gondor

Apr 18 2013, 12:43pm

Post #19 of 26 (228 views)
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PS on Uruks [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
The question is, why should the reader [who meets both these spies and these goblin-faced half-orcs] include Saruman's Uruk-hai when we know it means Orc-folk and there are other beings who fit Treebeard's speculation perfectly?



Tried to revise this before it timed out to [as the reader of The Lord of the Rings alone would not know of Tolkien's explanation of the full term Uruk-hai admittedly]...

... why should the reader include the Uruk-hai when we enounter the spies and the goblin-faced half-orcs? What is so mannish about the Uruk-hai? Other orcs can tolerate the Sun, as we have seen, and as for size, before The Lord of the Rings was even written Tolkien imagined his orcs as of nearly human stature [back in the context of Morgoth simply 'creating' orcs instead of using other living beings to make them].

The physical description of Saruman's Uruk-hai doesn't seen all that mannish to me, and Aragorn's 'mannish statements' are rather about their gear in my opinion. And the Uruk-hai boast that they eat man-flesh, which seems like an orkish thing to boast about, although obviously it's within the realm of possibility that a half-breed [thus part man] would also eat man-flesh.


(This post was edited by Elthir on Apr 18 2013, 12:46pm)


Salmacis81
Tol Eressea


Apr 18 2013, 3:00pm

Post #20 of 26 (221 views)
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Uruks continued [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To


Quote
Well the name Uruk-hai 'Orc-folk' was Black Speech and would naturally enough be assumed as a term hailing from Mordor. And hai- meaning 'folk' seems a general plural, and I see no reason to restrict such a general name as 'Orc-folk' to only Saruman's Orc-folk.

More generally, uruks are distinguished from snagas, yes -- or [arguably] the Uruk-hai from the *Snaga-hai or 'Slave-folk', as uruk was a word to distinguish the greater soldier orcs from lesser kinds [Appendix F].

There's no reason to believe that certain words from the Black Speech would only be known to Isengard orcs if they had originally come from Mordor. It is mentioned in "The Uruk-Hai" that "Apparently the members of two or three quite different tribes were present, and they could not understand one another’s orc-speech." We know that there were the bow-legged Mordor orcs present, and these were Grishnakh's company. We know that there were smaller "goblins" from the north present. And then there was Ugluk and the "fighting Uruk-hai", or the "Isengarders". So apparently, even though the Isengard Uruk-hai knew how to say at least one phrase in the Black Speech, they still did not speak or understand it fluently.


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As you say, Treebeard is merely generalizing and doesn't know. The question is, why should the reader [who meets both these spies and these goblin-faced half-orcs] include Saruman's Uruk-hai when we know it means Orc-folk and there are other beings who fit Treebeard's speculation perfectly?




I think that Treebeard's description of "Isengarders" being better equipped to deal with sunlight would certainly describe the Uruk-hai. Here is a short little exchange between a Northerner "goblin" and Ugluk, taken from "The Uruk-Hai" -

Now straight on!’ shouted Uglúk. ‘West and a little north. Follow Lugdush.’

‘But what are we going to do at sunrise?’ said some of the Northerners.

‘Go on running,’ said Uglúk. ‘What do you think? Sit on the grass and wait for the Whiteskins to join the picnic?’

‘But we can’t run in the sunlight.’

‘You’ll run with me behind you,’ said Uglúk. ‘Run! Or you’ll never see your beloved holes again. By the White Hand! What’s the use of sending out mountain-maggots on a trip, only half trained. Run, curse you! Run while night lasts!’

This would seem to indicate that Ugluk and the rest of his Uruk-hai were more tolerant of the sun, and would fit the description of what Treebeard described.



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The two terms are half one thing half the other, with the terms switched: a perfect way to describe more mannish looking half orcs [spies] as distiguished from Merry's 'goblin faced' version.

If Treebeard didn't know the term Uruk-hai certainly Tolkien did, but it wasn't employed here and its meaning doesn't fit.
Well your 'or Isengard Uruk-hai' is the question here. Merry had first hand knowedge of the Uruk-hai, but he never specifically calls the Uruk-hai 'Man-orcs' as you do here.

And I agree that the half-orcs can be generally broken down into spies and those who were too orkish looking -- but these were 'goblin' faced' rather, and as Merry notes: And there were battalions of Men, too. (...) Most of them were ordinary men, rather tall and dark-haired, and grim but not particularly evil-looking. But there were some others that were horrible: man-high but with goblin-faces, sallow, leering, squint-eyed. Do you know, they reminded me at once of that Southerner at Bree; only he was not so obviously orc-like as most of these were.'

'I thought of him too,’ said Aragorn. ’We had many of these half-orcs to deal with at Helm’s Deep.’ Flotsam And Jetsam

I do not believe the term "man-orc" is used at all, outside of Morgoth's Ring. It's usually either "half-orc", or "orc-men". In Unfinished Tales, at the Battle of the the Fords of Isen, Theodred's company is assailed by Dunlendings, orcs, Uruk-hai, AND "orc-men". Tolkien's description of the "orc-men" are that they were treacherous and vile, and these are the ones you've tagged the "spies". I'll concede that it is not impossible that some of the group you refer to as the "spies" served as soldiers, but why then was every type of Isengarder present at that battle EXCEPT for the "goblin-faced" variety, who, according to your argument, were separate from the spies? Unless they were, in fact, the "orc-men", and not the "man-orcs"... As for the spy in Bree, it is certainly possible that he just happened to look more mannish than some others of his kind, OR he was not half-orc, but only had some orcish blood (as was the rumor around Bree).


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That's more speculation in any case, as your 'might' emphasizes. Large Orcs being bred with large orcs would produce larger orcs, and Tolkien never [to date] notes that Sauron bred orcs with Men to produce the Uruks.


Yep, it's all speculation, either way. But large orcs bred with large orcs likely would not create better resistance ot sunlight, as was shown by Ugluk and company. Then again, there is the matter of the Olog-hai trolls, who were resistant to sunlight, and I do find it hard to believe that men would be cross-bred with trolls as well, but it isn't out of the realm of possibility (we are talking about a fantasy world here). Whatever the case may be, it looks pretty clear to me that the Uruk-hai were more than simply a product of breeding large orcs with other large orcs. Doesn't prove that they were part-man, but it IS a good theory.



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For myself I was well aware that some believe that the Uruk-hai are the result of Saruman's breeding program. However above you said this idea was 'almost certainly' the case, and then again 'pretty damn close' however, and that is what I have been disagreeing with.

And there is more evidence for argument -- for both sides -- than presented in this article [that you linked to], which notably does not include Tolkien's explanation of the meaning of Uruk-hai in any case, and arguably needs updating in that regard at least.

Nor do I agree with this article's phrasing concerning the word uruk actually, but I'll leave it at that for now Smile

Maybe I got a bit gung-ho in trying to argue my point, which I tend to do sometimes LOL. But I still stand by my argument. Your argument is certainly valid too, much more valid than I believed it was BEFORE we got into this debate. This has been an enlightening exchange. Smile



(This post was edited by Salmacis81 on Apr 18 2013, 3:03pm)


Elthir
Gondor

Apr 18 2013, 6:10pm

Post #21 of 26 (235 views)
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more uruks than anyone wanted, perhaps [In reply to] Can't Post


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There's no reason to believe that certain words from the Black Speech would only be known to Isengard orcs if they had originally come from Mordor. It is mentioned in "The Uruk-Hai" that "Apparently the members of two or three quite different tribes were present, and they could not understand one another’s orc-speech." We know that there were the bow-legged Mordor orcs present, and these were Grishnakh's company. We know that there were smaller "goblins" from the north present. And then there was Ugluk and the "fighting Uruk-hai", or the "Isengarders". So apparently, even though the Isengard Uruk-hai knew how to say at least one phrase in the Black Speech, they still did not speak or understand it fluently.



Well Orc-speech does not necessarily mean Black Speech in any case, even for the Mordorians. But anyway I said the term Uruk-hai naturally 'hails' from Mordor and thus I see no reason to restrict it to Saruman's Uruks -- in other words, Uruk-hai can easily be a term used in Mordor to describe Uruks.

In other other words, the Uruk-hai of Isengard are 'Orc-folk' as the Uruk-hai of Mordor would be 'Orc-folk' too, with no indication that Sauron bred his Uruks from Men. Some have argued that the term Uruk-hai was reserved only for the Isengarders [because they were special beings], so I was 'responding' to that a bit... although you hadn't said so in any case.

I had rambled into other territory there I guess Smile



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I think that Treebeard's description of "Isengarders" being better equipped to deal with sunlight would certainly describe the Uruk-hai.
Here is a short little exchange between a Northerner "goblin" and Ugluk, taken from "The Uruk-Hai" -

‘Now straight on!’ shouted Uglúk. ‘West and a little north. Follow Lugdush.’
‘But what are we going to do at sunrise?’ said some of the Northerners.
‘Go on running,’ said Uglúk. ‘What do you think? Sit on the grass and wait for the Whiteskins to join the picnic?’
‘But we can’t run in the sunlight.’
‘You’ll run with me behind you,’ said Uglúk. ‘Run! Or you’ll never see your beloved holes again. By the White Hand! What’s the use of sending out mountain-maggots on a trip, only half trained. Run, curse you! Run while night lasts!’


This would seem to indicate that Ugluk and the rest of his Uruk-hai were more tolerant of the sun, and would fit the description of what Treebeard described.




I note what Ugluk himself notes here -- which indicates [or arguably so] that the Isengarders are better trained than the Northerners. Again nothing necessarily to do with mannish blood even makes the Isengarders better under the Sun than other orcs.

And yes, the Isengarders boast a lot about the Sun, perhaps putting more emphasis on this than they can truly claim, but the Mordorians and even some of the Northerners arguably run just as well. What if Treebeard saw these larger bolder Northerners, or Mordorians, run under the Sun?

Maybe he might add other possibilities than the two he guessed at.




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I do not believe the term "man-orc" is used at all, outside of Morgoth's Ring. It's usually either "half-orc", or "orc-men". In Unfinished Tales, at the Battle of the the Fords of Isen, Theodred's company is assailed by Dunlendings, orcs, Uruk-hai, AND "orc-men". Tolkien's description of the "orc-men" are that they were treacherous and vile, and these are the ones you've tagged the "spies".




Did I tag one specifically? Perhaps you are looking at the order in which I described the two 'kinds' compared to the MR quote, but that wasn't intentional really, I was just describing both.



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I'll concede that it is not impossible that some of the group you refer to as the "spies" served as soldiers, but why then was every type of Isengarder present at that battle EXCEPT for the "goblin-faced" variety, who, according to your argument, were separate from the spies?



Present at what battle? Merry notes the goblin-faced half-orcs leaving Isengard to do battle. I'm a bit confused here.




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Yep, it's all speculation, either way. But large orcs bred with large orcs likely would not create better resistance ot sunlight, as was shown by Ugluk and company.



But training could be the factor concerning the Sun, as [I think is] arguably implied by Ugluk himself.

I note also the emphasis on training Saruman's 'Uruks' noted in Unfinished Tales [the term Uruk-hai is not used there] where Saruman's uruks are said to be trained to move at great speed for many miles.




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Then again, there is the matter of the Olog-hai trolls, who were resistant to sunlight, and I do find it hard to believe that men would be cross-bred with trolls as well, but it isn't out of the realm of possibility (we are talking about a fantasy world here). Whatever the case may be, it looks pretty clear to me that the Uruk-hai were more than simply a product of breeding large orcs with other large orcs. Doesn't prove that they were part-man, but it IS a good theory.



The Olog-hai could '... endure the Sun, so long as the will of Sauron held sway over them.' [Appendix F].



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Maybe I got a bit gung-ho in trying to argue my point, which I tend to do sometimes LOL. But I still stand by my argument. Your argument is certainly valid too, much more valid than I believed it was BEFORE we got into this debate. This has been an enlightening exchange.



Wait... 'much more valid' than you believed before? So you are inching toward the idea... I have you now Skywalker...

... yes, yes... come to the dark side of the force.

No wait! My argument should be the light side [because it's mine] Wink


(This post was edited by Elthir on Apr 18 2013, 6:19pm)


Elthir
Gondor

Apr 18 2013, 6:34pm

Post #22 of 26 (189 views)
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Another PS [In reply to] Can't Post

Reading your post again [and paying better attention to it!] it seems you mean the 'battle' of the fords of Isen.

But I'm still not exactly sure of the point behind the question, and I think the 'tagging' point might be confusing things.


Salmacis81
Tol Eressea


Apr 18 2013, 7:13pm

Post #23 of 26 (191 views)
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Yes, much more than I'm sure either of us wanted as well... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To


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Well Orc-speech does not necessarily mean Black Speech in any case, even for the Mordorians. But anyway I said the term Uruk-hai naturally 'hails' from Mordor and thus I see no reason to restrict it to Saruman's Uruks -- in other words, Uruk-hai can easily be a term used in Mordor to describe Uruks.

In other other words, the Uruk-hai of Isengard are 'Orc-folk' as the Uruk-hai of Mordor would be 'Orc-folk' too, with no indication that Sauron bred his Uruks from Men. Some have argued that the term Uruk-hai was reserved only for the Isengarders [because they were special beings], so I was 'responding' to that a bit... although you hadn't said so in any case.

I had rambled into other territory there I guess Smile

No, it doesn't necessarily mean that "orc-speech" = "Black Speech", but I'm not sure why Tolkien even would have mentioned the language barriers at all if he intended the Isengard Uruks to be fluent speakers of the language of Mordor. To me it implies that they could not understand one another, so that's why they resorted to speaking Westron (and not the language of Mordor).





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I note what Ugluk himself notes here -- which indicates [or arguably so] that the Isengarders are better trained than the Northerners. Again nothing necessarily to do with mannish blood even makes the Isengarders better under the Sun than other orcs.

And yes, the Isengarders boast a lot about the Sun, perhaps putting more emphasis on this than they can truly claim, but the Mordorians and even some of the Northerners arguably run just as well. What if Treebeard saw these larger bolder Northerners, or Mordorians, run under the Sun?

Maybe he might add other possibilities than the two he guessed at.

There are any number of possibilities, but what is implied is that the Isengard Uruk-hai are less mindful of the sun, and then in the very next chapter, Treebeard mentions the Isengard orcs who are man-like and travel under the sun. Treebeard doesn't know anything for certain, you're correct. But, at least as I see it, a reader would likely assume that Treebeard just may be talking about
those same guys in the previous chapter, who were boasting about how they didn't care about traveling under the sun while another group moaned about it. It seems logical to connect the two.



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Did I tag one specifically? Perhaps you are looking at the order in which I described the two 'kinds' compared to the MR quote, but that wasn't intentional really, I was just describing both.

No, but obviously the "treacherous and vile" orc-men would not be as well-suited to battle as the "large and cunning" man-orcs (these are Tolkien's descriptions), so I am guessing that you believed the orc-men to be the spies, and the man-orcs to be Merry's "goblin-faced" Isengarders, since you basically boiled down all of the half-orcs into either mannish-looking spies, or goblin-faced soldiers.




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Present at what battle? Merry notes the goblin-faced half-orcs leaving Isengard to do battle. I'm a bit confused here.

The attack that killed Theodred, outlined in Unfinished Tales in the chapter "The Battles of the Fords of Isen". There were plenty of mentions Dunlendings, smaller orcs, Uruk-hai, and orc-men being present at this battle. Now, taking into account Tolkien's differentiation between man-orcs and orc-men, we could likely assume that the orc-men present at the Battle of the Fords of Isen were the same "orc-men" that he made a point to describe as "treacherous and vile", instead of the "large and cunning" man-orcs, whom it seems you were hypothesizing were the "goblin-faced" group that Merry and Pippin saw. Based on all of this, I will submit that the "goblin-faced" half-orcs and the "treacherous and vile" orc-men described in Morgoth's Ring were one and the same, and that the Isengard Uruk-hai and the "large and cunning" man-orcs described in Morgoth's Ring were also one and the same.




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But training could be the factor concerning the Sun, as [I think is] arguably implied by Ugluk himself.

I note also the emphasis on training Saruman's 'Uruks' noted in Unfinished Tales [the term Uruk-hai is not used there] where Saruman's uruks are said to be trained to move at great speed for many miles.


Sure, it could simply be training, but again, the implication is pretty strong that Ugluk and company are the same Isengarders that Treebeard describes as being sort of mannish. I'm sure you will disagree with me here, but I think I've made a strong-enough case.





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Wait... 'much more valid' than you believed before? So you are inching toward the idea... I have you now Skywalker...

... yes, yes... come to the dark side of the force.

No wait! My argument should be the light side [because it's mine] Wink

I would not go as far as me inching toward the idea, just that I can see how someone might side with your opinion on the matter. I am still 100% convinced I'm correct here Tongue



Elthir
Gondor

Apr 20 2013, 2:51pm

Post #24 of 26 (172 views)
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a matter of measure? [In reply to] Can't Post


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No, it doesn't necessarily mean that "orc-speech" = "Black Speech", but I'm not sure why Tolkien even would have mentioned the language barriers at all if he intended the Isengard Uruks to be fluent speakers of the language of Mordor. To me it implies that they could not understand one another, so that's why they resorted to speaking Westron (and not the language of Mordor).




Well, here is what we know concerning the Black Speech [Appendix F] : '... he [Sauron] had desired to make it the language of all those that served him, but he failed in that purpose. From the Black Speech, however, were derived many of the words that were in the Third Age wide-spread among the Orcs, such as ghâsh 'fire', but after the first overthrow of Sauron this language in its ancient form was forgotten by all but the Nazgûl. When Sauron arose again, it became once more the language of Barad-dûr and of the captains of Mordor.'

I'm not sure what your point is here with respect to the larger issue. In any case we know Uruk-hai is Black Speech, and we know it means Orc-folk.



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(...) But, at least as I see it, a reader would likely assume that Treebeard just may be talking about those same guys in the previous chapter, who were boasting about how they didn't care about traveling under the sun while another group moaned about it. It seems logical to connect the two.




I would not argue that connecting these things is illogical, but to my mind it's not 'clearly' Tolkien's intent, which again is what prompted me to weigh in on this matter in such detail [again you worded things pretty strongly above with your: 'The Isengard Uruk-hai were almost certainly a result of a man/orc breeding program intitiated by Saruman, as were the "half-orcs" like the squint-eyed southerner the hobbits encounter in Bree. This was only speculated on in the LOTR books, but in Morgoth's Ring Tolkien stated that it was clearly his intent.'].



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No, but obviously the "treacherous and vile" orc-men would not be as well-suited to battle as the "large and cunning" man-orcs (these are Tolkien's descriptions), so I am guessing that you believed the orc-men to be the spies, and the man-orcs to be Merry's "goblin-faced" Isengarders, since you basically boiled down all of the half-orcs into either mannish-looking spies, or goblin-faced soldiers.




I can't agree this is obvious however [again 'obvious' is a fairly strong description in my opinion], and to my mind it jumps to conclusions based on very little here. We don't know that treacherous and vile beings would be less well suited to battle simply because the other description employs 'large' -- for example, were the 'large' folks incapable of being vile simply because of the wording here? I would say not.

In my opinion all these adjectives really well fit any of the Half-orcs, but the more notable matter is that there appears to be a general distinction of two 'kinds' here: which agrees with a distinction between spies and the goblin-faced warriors, as Merry himself appears to make.


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Sure, it could simply be training, but again, the implication is pretty strong that Ugluk and company are the same Isengarders that Treebeard describes as being sort of mannish. I'm sure you will disagree with me here, but I think I've made a strong-enough case.




Not that you said otherwise here, but Treebeard is talking about the Sun, not any physical descriptions that might be mannish. And his observations about the Sun can apply to some of the Northerners, the Isengarders, and the Mordorians.


I think part of the problem is that we are arguing 'measure' now, or how strong a given case is. You drew me into this discussion with very strong wording, and above you implied [at least] that you were backing away from that [with your: 'Maybe I got a bit gung-ho in trying to argue my point, which I tend to do sometimes LOL. But I still stand by my argument. Your argument is certainly valid too, much more valid than I believed it was BEFORE we got into this debate'.]

To me this implies that you admit your case was not as strong as you worded it initially, and this states directly that my argument is 'much more' valid than you first believed.


If so my work is done here Wink

Again I have not argued that there is no other side to the coin here, or that it is illogical to make the connection you are making. As I say it's not a 'given fact' that the Uruk-hai are anything other than bigger, well trained Orcs.


(This post was edited by Elthir on Apr 20 2013, 3:01pm)


Salmacis81
Tol Eressea


Apr 20 2013, 4:56pm

Post #25 of 26 (161 views)
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Mostly seems to be lack of concrete evidence (your position) vs strong implications (my position) [In reply to] Can't Post

I already admitted that my original wording was "gung-ho". If you want a stronger admission on my part, then I'll use the word "cocksure". Like I said, I can understand how someone might think the way you do, but that is only because of a lack of concrete evidence (ie. Tolkien explicitly stating the the Uruk-hai were part-mannish). So yes, you've convinced me that your argument is valid (whereas I did not believe so before). I still think that the implications that the Uruks were part-mannish are too strong to ignore.

Anyway, it's been real Cool


(This post was edited by Salmacis81 on Apr 20 2013, 5:00pm)

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