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Old 10-23-2002, 09:31 AM   #1
Bill Ferny
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Sting Half-orcs and Uruk-hai, a hypothesis

I posted this as a reply on another thread. However, that thread is now buried, and I would really like some feed back as to the weakness of or merits to this theory:

Orc refers to the species of creature that Melkor created through torturing and tormenting elves in the Pits of Utumno during the first age. This was Melkor’s greatest evil, a twisted form of creating.
Likewise, Sauron’s greatest act of evil was the creation of the Uruk-hai. These were orcs of greater strength, as tall as men, and they did not fear day light. They sacked the greatest city of Gondor, Osgiliath in 2475. The sticking point in relation to the Uruk-hai, at least for me, is that nothing is written about their creation, only that Sauron used sorcery to “make” this terrible breed of orc.

Then you have half-orcs or goblin men. The blood of men, Dunlendings, were mixed with that of orcs by Saruman’s sorcery, thus the creation of half-orcs. The Squint-eyed Southerner is one example. However, it would seem that many of Saruman’s half-orcs were more terrible in form, and at the Battles of the Fords of Isen, Theored, the son of King Theoden of the Mark, was, in fact, slain by a “great orc-man”. I find it hard to believe that a creature with the stature of the Squint-eyed Southerner could accomplish such a feat.

So between Uruks and goblin men, what do we have?

From description, these two fell breeds were very similar: Uruks were not frightened of day light; goblin men were not frightened of day light. Uruks were as tall as men; goblin men were as tall as men. Uruks stood upright; goblin men stood upright. Uruks were lynx-eyed; goblin men were lynx-eyed. Both Uruks and goblin men are “made” not bred. In other words, sorcery is used, not a process of inter-mating two species. Tolkien never says whether mating between these two species is possible, and I strongly suspect it is not.

Minor or non-universal differences include: Uruks were clawed, not all goblin men are described as such. Uruks had fangs; the only description of fangs in a goblin man (that I can find) is the words “fang like”.

Differences that seem to be universal: Uruks have black skin like charred wood. To my knowledge no goblin man is described as such.

From my perspective there seems to be more similarities than differences, leading me to conclude that Uruks and goblin men, while definitely different, are in theory the same. It is my hypothesis that Uruk-hai are, indeed, orcs crossed with men. There is nothing in the Tolkien canon that supports or contests this hypothesis, only reticence. There are also a few arguments that might support this hypothesis.

Melkor’s greatest evil was the creation of orcs. Sauron’s greatest evil was the creation of the Uruk-hai. When Melkor made orcs he was twisting a fair thing into a thing of utter loathing and evil. Now if Sauron merely transformed an already loathsome and evil race into a more powerful, but equally loathsome and evil race, this doesn’t seem to even approach the same level of sinfulness as Melkor’s evil. I’m a little hard pressed to see Sauron’s creation of the Uruk-hai in this manner as an evil that outstrips his creation of the one ring. If, however, Sauron used sorcery to mix the blood of orcs and men in the creation of the Uruk-hai, then we are talking about an evil on a completely different level. This sin would approach the terrible magnitude of Melkor’s sin.

Sauron not only improved the orc theme, he also improved on the troll theme. Creating the Olog-hai. These were trolls, not surprising, who could withstand the light of day. However, their greatest strength is that they had the intelligence of men. Whenever Tolkien wrote about Sauron’s “improvements” he referred to how these improved beasts were more man like.

Saruman’s fall is mostly brought about by his envy and jealously. He is envious of Gandalf who has one of the three rings, and he knew that Gandalf was greater than he. He is envious of Sauron and the power he wields. Out of envy, Saruman immolates both Gandalf and Sauron. Saruman (secretly) develops a hobbit weed habit like Gandalf, and takes a great interest in the Shire. Saruman forges for himself a “ring of power” like Sauron did. Would it be such a stretch, therefore, to say that in imitation of Sauron, Saruman made the half-orcs, attempting to create a fighting force like the Uruks? Saruman never understood the Shire like Gandalf, and his ring was more than likely a worthless trinket in comparison with the one ring. Thus Saruman’s half-orcs would pale in comparison to Sauron’s Uruk-hai.

This is only a hypothesis, and I'm always open to different opinions and takes on the way I see this.
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Old 10-23-2002, 10:18 AM   #2
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Sting

You may have heard this argument before but here goes,It was only believed by the wise amongst the Hight Elves that orcs were corrupted elves but it was never known for sure as none of the elves had ever been to his first great fortress to see.
Another very minor point is that Melkor would not have first bred the Orcs during the First Age, he would have done this before the first age, during the years of the trees. The first age was only said to have started once the Noldor had returned to Middle Earth.
But otherwise it is i think a very good idea
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Old 10-23-2002, 07:29 PM   #3
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Sting

At the first rising of the sun (or was it the moon?) actually, but who is nitpicking?
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Old 10-23-2002, 08:07 PM   #4
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Sting

I only have one word for you Bill - WOW! [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]
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Old 10-24-2002, 06:38 AM   #5
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Good points Aule. I figure that the high elves are correct only from my understanding of Tolkien's view of creation (based in part on a 1970 interview, an on-line article the link to which I've lost, and influences from Roman-Catholic theology in general).

I assumed that Melkor created the orcs during the First Age based on A Chronology of Middle-Earth and the Undying Lands found in A Tolkien Bestiary by David Day. When I wrote the above post I believe that I consulted that chronology as a quick reference. Looking at it again (if I'm reading it right), it does indeed place the making of orcs during the first age, after the awakening of the ents and dwarves, and just prior to the War of Powers. I'll look up the material from the primary sources if I get time tommorrow.

Thanks for reading that rather long (almost Thomistic) post, and for the insights [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]
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Old 10-24-2002, 06:41 AM   #6
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Sting

I'm sorry... First Age of the Ages of Stars.
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Old 10-24-2002, 11:03 AM   #7
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Good and thorough post, Bill! As you know, I agree with you about Saruman wishing to immitate and better the exploits of Melkor and Sauron -- and even Gandalf. However, I don't think that the Uruk-hai came from mixing the blood of men and orcs at all, I think they were simply a large breed of orc. I think there was a great variety in orcs, possibly representing different origins (bigger breeds of orcs might originally have come from corrupted men and littler breeds of orcs from corrupted elves (at one point in the mythos elves were slighter than men) or beasts) or different variations later in the strain. And I think that all orcs were developed with the power of Morgoth, and none were made by Sauron after Morgoth fell. I believe Lindil mentioned that orcs were created by Sauron on Morgoth's behalf while he was a 'parolee' in Valinor, but I still think that it took Morgoth's power deployed by him or a lieutenant to warp creation on that scale.

I do agree with you, I think Treebeard's speculation that Saruman was mixing orcs and men was well-founded and I think the southerner was part orc. However, I think that that was done through ordinary reproductive means applied to already corrupted and enslaved humans and orcs.

There's no way to tell how Saruman would have done it, and that's the sort of thing I suspect JRRT would have hated to speculate about, but regular, garden-variety mating with some minor illusions to ease the trauma wouldn't have been difficult for Saruman to impose on his subjects, and basic assisted reproduction isn't technically difficult to think of or execute. It doesn't even require a microscope. That's all I'll say on THAT subject!

I remain convinced orcs made little orcs in the same old way their original corrupted ancestors did, and not with pods or pits or eggs or marsupial pouches, nor by amoebic division, nor with little squirrel-monsters implanted in a human trachea (ref: Alien), nor any other exotic way. No, orcs got their orclets the same way we get babies: storks brought them. Sorry, I meant fell beasts.
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Old 10-24-2002, 11:40 AM   #8
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Tolkien

Minor Correction is necessary:
Saruman could not have been envious of Mithrandir, at least not for the reason that he carried a ring. Why is this? Just the simple fact that Curunir did not know that Gandalf possessed it! In th Silmarillion in the "Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age", it states, "But the Red Ring remained hidden until the end, and none save Elrond, and Galadriel, and Cirdan knew to whom it had been committed." Otherwise i think your theory is quite possible, yet not grounded. Another possible theory is simply that he needed an army because he had hopes to retrieving the ring for himself and setting himself up as lord. Although his power would be great, an army would make conquest quicker.
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Old 10-24-2002, 01:49 PM   #9
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Sting

I am pretty sure that somewhere in UT that Saruman had a made a guess that Gandalf had a ring but he didn't know for sure. And that is why he was even more jealouse. I would look for a quote but being at university i haven't got it to hand. But this might just be my bad memory.
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Old 10-24-2002, 06:50 PM   #10
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It specifically says in UT that Saruman knew of Gandalf's possession of narya: "And the Grey Messenger took the Ring, and kept it ever secret; yet the White Messenger (who was skilled to uncover all secrets) after a time became aware of this gift, and begrudged it, and it was the beginning of the hidden ill-will that he bore to the Grey, which afterwards became Manifest."

As for the uruk-hai, I believe that they are actually the closest thing to Goblin-men, as we learn especially from Treebeard: "He [Saruman} has taken up with foul folk, with orcs. Brm, hoom! Worse than that: he has been doing something with them; something dangerous. For these Isengarders are more like wicked Men. It is a mark of evil things that came in the Great Darkness that they cannot abide the Sun; but Saruman's OPrcs can endure it, even if they hate it. I wonder what he has done? Are they Men he has ruined, or has he blended the races of Orcs and Men? That would be a black evil?"

I don't believe that the half-orc goblinmen actually exist. The squint-eyed southerner does not actually have orc-blood in him, it simply appears as if he does because he is a wild dunlending: "an outlaw driven from Dunland, where mny said that he had Orc-blood." The word where in this sentence must either be taken to mean something along the lines of "hence" (unless you wish for it to meen that simply he had orc-blood in Dunland); there is nothing to show he consists of orc-blood and, moreover, there is no reference to his semi-goblin-like appearence when the Hobbits first see him in full view.
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Old 10-25-2002, 03:04 PM   #11
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I may be reading you wrong Westerly Wizard, forgive me if I am. Its my understanding from reading UT that it’s a far gone conclusion that half-orcs actually existed, especially from a reading of The Battles of the Fords of Isen.

Like WW stated in response to Matthew, it was from the UT that I learned Saruman knew, or surmised, that Gandalf possessed Narya.

Its always a delight to read Nar’s posts! [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img] Some clarifications in response: I would assume, like you, that orcs propagated their species by sexual intercourse, though dwelling on the issue is a bit twisted. [img]smilies/eek.gif[/img] However, Saruman’s activity in breeding half-orcs was done, as far as my research indicates, by sorcery. I’m choosing to highlight the similarity between this sorcery and the terrible sorcery “believed” to be used in Sauron’s creation of a breed of greater orcs, the uruk-hai. (Now, far be it from me to second guess Peter Jackson’s pod theory. I personally think it was horrific…just what I would expect from Peter Jackson [img]smilies/evil.gif[/img] , but that’s beside the point.) My research is mostly from LotRs and appendixes, HoME, and UT. I have yet to purchase letters, so its not readily available, and I found very little in the Silm on the subject, though I’ll take a second look in light of Matthew’s post regarding Narya. Secondary sources include Tolkien Bestiary (a good one, but no annotations indicating the original texts), and ME Encyclopdia.
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Old 10-26-2002, 05:04 PM   #12
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It was actually Saruman who created the Uruk-Hai. That is a proper name for the fighting force created by Saruman. Sauron created Uruks first, but not the Uruk-Hai. [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]
 
Old 10-26-2002, 06:30 PM   #13
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I respectfully disagree. Uruks is the Anglicized form of Uruk-hai of the Black Speech (UT, 470). The uruk-hai were indeed created by Sauron. See LotR II 5, III 3 , IV 10, VI 2, and, most notably, App. F: “Related, no doubt, was the word uruk of the Black Speech, though this was applied as a rule only to the great soldier-orcs that at this time issued from Mordor and Isengard.” See also index to HoME for relevant references.
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Old 10-26-2002, 08:19 PM   #14
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Yes, that's my impression, too, Uruk-hai means something like 'Uruk-folk' or 'Uruk-company' (my money would be on the later). The connection between Sauron's sorcery having something to do with the black Uruks of Mordor (do you have the citation, btw?) and Saruman's orc-men sounds reasonable, Bill.

My theory on the creation of the orcs is that the twisting of the body(Hroa) FOLLOWS the corruption of the soul(Fea), which is done by means of bribery and terror and persuasion and malicious suggestions and so forth, and that the magic of this later twisting of the Hroa consists of 'softening' the Hroa so that it can collapse around the new form of the twisted soul/Fea -- and that it takes the distributed power of a Valar to do that -- so it didn't happen after Morgoth was ejected. No new orcfathers from men, beasts or elves once he was gone.

However, what of re-twisting and re-altering an already corrupted form? Re-engineered battle-orcs? I could believe in that with only the power of an amplified Maia such as Sauron. So, I could believe that Sauron worked on the Fea of the biggest and fiercest strain of orcs he could find and softened their Hroa to reflect greater murderousness -- I could believe that twisting the already twisted was a more accessible evil, as the 'structural integrity' of the orc-bodies was already gone. It's possible Saruman also succeeded in following Sauron in this, also I can't help but see Saruman as too much a wanna-be to do this very effectively. Maybe I'm too contemptuous of him. My intuitions on Uruks and orcs all involve what goes on with a single spirit and its body, so the idea of sorcerous mixing of blood or genetics -- that's difficult for me to imagine. It's possible, certainly. I invite you, Bill, to shamelessly speculate on what wizardly powers would be involved in the sorcerous mixing of blood? That sounds like teleportation to me, which doesn't sound wizardly, am I missing something?

[ October 26, 2002: Message edited by: Nar ]
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Old 10-27-2002, 01:11 PM   #15
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According to the Middle-Earth Encyclopedia, uruk means orc, hai means race. Uruk-hai, therefore, simply means “orc-race” in the Black Speech. From App A, iv: “…the race of uruks, black orcs of great strength, first appeared out of Mordor, and in 2475 they swept across Ithilien and took Osgiliath.” This indicates that Sauron bred the uruk-hai, and that they were definitely different from his regular run of the mill orcs. Also see the term Olog-hai (trolls bred by Sauron). There is no difference between Ologs (a shorten version) and Olog-hai. Uruk and olog can be used to indicate individuals, and the addition of –hai to indicate the race collectively.

Treebeard makes the conjecture that Saruman mingled the blood of men and orc by the use of the sorcery.

However, attempting to find “bred by sorcery” has proven a bit difficult in reference to the uruk-hai. To my surprise, the phrase comes from secondary sources only (Tolkien Bestiary and ME Encyclopedia). This could be an example of an assumption taken for fact and propagated by me. If it is simply an assumption, it doesn’t necessarily take the wind out the sails of my little theory. In fact, it might end up supporting it.

Nar makes the distinction between hroa and fea (body/soul), and very well says that a change in hroa follows a change in fea (as any good Platonist would hold!). However, I disagree on the possibility of corrupting a corrupted race into a more powerful corrupted race.

The hroa can not possess a quality not governed by the fea. Likewise, the fea cannot, through corruption, possess a greater power that it did not already possess according to its nature.

We know that uruk-hai possessed certain powers not possessed by lesser orcs: they were larger, stood upright, and could endure sunlight. Thus, a further corruption can not explain these greater powers. Unless, of course, we throw into the mix the possibility that these greater powers were introduced not by further corruption, but the mingling of orc with a species that did possess these greater powers, namely the species of man.

Of course, the introduction of sorcery could make this logic obsolete. A greater power not possessed by fea could be introduced via magic. I don’t think, however, this fits with Sauron’s brand of magic. His power is focused not on building up, but destroying. Beyond his lies and illusions he gives nothing, but takes everything. I think that a mingling of man and orc can be accomplished through necromantic means that fits with Sauron’s character. Breeding could be accomplished by dispossessing the fae of men and replacing the hroa with that of orcs, thus allowing for the hroa to shape about the fae of men. Out of the cauldron pops Bobby the Drooling Uruk!
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Old 10-27-2002, 09:16 PM   #16
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Soul-swapping??? Well, I did ask you to speculate, Bill, didn't I!

The usual interpretation of the 'twisting' of elves into orcs from the earlier conception to the 'twisting' of men and beasts of the later conception is that the body was directly altered by sorcery and torture -- I just don't like that, it leads to implications that seem too unjust to me, and as the resulting races all come out evil, it seems reasonable to me that the evil came first.

But I stand by one body, one soul, Bill! Genetic mixing by mating or sorcerous mingling (Dr Jeckyll's potion, anyone? The cartoon Tweety-Hyde is forever imprinted on my mind!) I can agree with (at least I agree with it in Saruman's Uruks and the half-orc) -- but putting the Fea of a man into the Hroa of an Orc -- noooo! My brain is melting! I believe I may be twisting, twisting .... ok, kidding.

Seriously, I can see any of these bad 'S' folks messing with mind and body, but while they could obviously expell the Fea/Spirit from the Hroa/Body by the simple method of killing the victim, the rules of the world are that the Spirit's then free to go to its fate as decreed by Eru -- it's possible a Fea could refuse the call -- they do -- but I really think reinserting a Fea into another's Hroa is not within their power. Otherwise, Sauron could bring the dead back to life in captured bodies rather than just stay their aging into a slow fade.

[ October 27, 2002: Message edited by: Nar ]
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Old 10-28-2002, 12:00 AM   #17
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1420!

OK. That was a bit strange. LOL.

Necromancy, which is the bringing back to life of the dead by way of captured bodies, is pretty much foreign to Middle Earth. Attempting to define “sorcerous mingling” may be a bit out of my league. I always did think more like a dwarf than an elf.

[ October 29, 2002: Message edited by: Bill Ferny ]
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Old 11-02-2002, 03:04 PM   #18
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At the end of this reply is some language that is also part of my own tangent about Uruk-Hai in reply to that long troll thread on the Olog-Hai, for which their are obvious parallels.

The perspective I might add is to remember that Tolkien is trying to give a realistic sense of various veiwpoints, suspicions and assumptions, as they apply to various people, and that we really don't know all the facts, but only what people like the Gondorians, Treebeard, Westfold-men (Gamling), and others observe and conclude. In some cases, they may be reporting only myths within the larger myth.

What little the Wise really might be sure of, is given to us in the Appendices to the LotR.

Orcs clearly come in various sizes and types, depending on their race and geography, although perhaps without the individual diversity that characterizes Ents, and I suggest, Trolls.

Obviously, from Morgoth on down, the Dark Powers (and wannabee Saruman) have a great interest in trying to make Orcs more useful. As Morgoth discovers early on in the War of the Great Jewels, and is later demonstrated, Orcs by themselves are not of much effect unless they are massed in extremely overwhelming numbers.

So, the appearance of the term "Uruk-Hai"
with the taking of Osgiliath, and of elite, uniform groups of large, sun-enduring orcs, is not necessarily a clear-cut event, but perhaps only the crystalization and unleashing of a much older trend.

Hence, the Uruk-Hais' isolation and development by Sauron (through sorcery or other means) was not an overnight thing, and at least as captains among lesser orcs, he could have been cultivating their forerunners for some time. Also, Saruman's own types of Uruk-Hai could be something else apart, to which he has added special spells or genetic manipulation. Quite possibly, the Orcs who would call themselves Uruk-Hai varied from place to place, and group to group.

As for the exact relationship of so-called Uruk-Hai to the half-orcs, goblin-men and so forth, as attributed to Saruman, or what those references really mean, it is hard to do more than speculate.

Nevertheless, in "The Hobbit," with Tolkien's rather endearing, anti-technology philosophy, he seems to suggest that "goblin-ness" survived into modern-like times, and was the origin of great killing machines, in which the goblins take such delight. Perhaps, orc-men are how this would be possible.

In the course of the LotR, I think Tolkien is trying to avoid giving us too precise of a system for categorizing any evil creature and so forth. Rather, he is giving us a flavor of how everyday Men, Hobbits, Elves, Dwarves, and so forth labeled and reacted to these creatures, in a way that is not necessarily consistent, except that it is clouded by natural fear and legend/rumor.

Similarly, we find "Uruk-Hai" used in reference to developments out of Sauron's fastnesses, as well as breeding efforts by Saruman, such that it is hard to say who steals, uses or expands on whose evil work, not to mention the jumble of terms about half-orcs, goblin-men, hobgoblins and so forth, which are never at all clarified or fully distinguished from "Uruk-Hai," except perhaps in HoME.

I would also note how the chiefs of the Orc squads from Cirith Ungol and Minas Morgul that Sam overhears seem to consider themselves to be Uruk-Hai, but they hark back to some time that they both personally remember, which seems to be none other than the Dark Age when Sauron held sway over most of Middle-Earth during the Second Age!

So, that even though the term Uruk-Hai is applied to large, non-daylight challenged Orcs only in the latter part of the Third Age, when they are first recorded as being grouped together, they may have been based on orc-breeds going back much farther in time.

Perhaps, Sauron took existing orcs out of the refuse of the War of Wrath and increasingly endowed some of them with special strengths, which then Saruman enhanced with, or used as part of, breeding experiments with men and women. There may have been Uruk-Hai, and then there were Uruk-Hai.

Notably, Grishnakh is large and strong, if squat, but not a Uruk-Hai, but also of much greater cunning and rank in the greater scheme of things than Sarumans group of seemingly rather new-sprung Uruk-Hai.

[ November 02, 2002: Message edited by: Man-of-the-Wold ]
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Old 11-03-2002, 12:03 PM   #19
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I agree with you about time frame problems. I don't think that my theory requires an actual time and place for the definitive creation of the uruk-hai. In fact, their creation was probably an evolution of sorts, either initiated by inter-mating or sorcery or both. The only definitive date for the appearance of the uruk-hai from the canon is 2475 of the third age of Middle Earth, but as you point out, that is only in regards to them actually showing up the history of Middle Earth. After all, the words breed, bred, etc. imply a process.

Minor differences between various orcs, I've always assumed, is dependent on environment and lifestyle, in much the same way that there are differences between humans from Asia and humans from Europe in the real world. It can be assumed, then, that there would be similar differences due to environment and lifestyle among the uruk-hai, especially toward the end of the third age. After all, they had been around for some time, at least long enough to adopt ethnic differences.

Quote:
Obviously, from Morgoth on down, the Dark Powers (and wannabee Saruman) have a great interest in trying to make Orcs more useful. As Morgoth discovers early on in the War of the Great Jewels, and is later demonstrated, Orcs by themselves are not of much effect unless they are massed in extremely overwhelming numbers.
What better way to improve on the orc theme, than to combine them with a race that has traits that overcome their weaknesses? I’m standing by the principle that a thing can not possess that which is not according to it’s nature. If all orcs possess these weaknesses, then how can further corruption of the race overcome these weaknesses? Something must be added to their natures. Dog breeders were well aware of this principle.

Now Sauron is standing by watching the Nmenreans kick the crap out of his orcs. “Hmmm,” he thinks in his dungeon cell in Nmenr. “I bet that if my orcs were part human, somehow, that they could do much better.”
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Old 11-04-2002, 01:28 PM   #20
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Necromancy, which is the bringing back to life of the dead by way of captured bodies, is pretty much foreign to Middle Earth.
Sauron's name while inhabiting Dol Guldur was "the Necromancer". How did he get that name? Resurrecting himself maybe. Sorry...don't mean to get off track [img]smilies/tongue.gif[/img]
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Old 11-05-2002, 12:59 AM   #21
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Actually, Keneldil it was that title given for Sauron that started me on that tangent to begin with! [img]smilies/rolleyes.gif[/img]
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Old 11-05-2002, 07:47 AM   #22
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Operating under the (possibly inaccurate) assumption that Sauron was given the name "the Necromancer" by someone else suggests that Sauron's as yet unidentified shade was known for reanimation of the dead. It also implys he is the only one (theNecromancer). Sorry, this has nothing to do with orcs.
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Old 11-06-2002, 09:19 AM   #23
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It very well might! However, I don't think we know enough about "necromancy" or what was meant by calling Sauron "The Necromancer" from the canon to draw any hard conclusions.

Because of these holes, I'm now leaning very heavily toward the notion of inter-breeding, the more genetic approach, to use a rather natural scientific term. There's just not enough evidence from the primary sources to indicate that the uruk-hai were the result of sorcery.
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Old 11-06-2002, 05:41 PM   #24
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At this point, I could accept any of those answers: cross breeding, sorcery, or a combination. I imagine all three took place in experimentation if nothing else. Morgoth and Sauron used any means at their disposal to invent and improve creatures for their armies. I lean toward the "combination" idea.
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Old 11-09-2002, 08:24 PM   #25
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Well, just to be clear, I consider Uruks to be the result of selective breeding among orcs, which Sauron probably intiated long before they are acknowledged by the Free Peoples and the Wise as a breed apart.

Whether in the process Sauron and later Saruman used other powers, or even some admixture with Men "genes" to give them greater height or straightness, is possible. But any genetic influence from other peoples to latter Orc varieties of this sort is purely speculative and only part of the story.

As for the half-orcs, goblin-men and so forth that are attributed to Saruman's army and the Chief's Men. I would submit that these are really men, quite distinct from the Uruk-hai, which may have been bred by introducing orc-features into human lines.

This appears to be a very late-Third-Age effort by Saruman, with perhaps, no clear purpose other than experimentation, although it might have contributed to efforts to perfect his Uruk-hai.

But it is likely that he wanted to create groups with the rampant evil and ferocity of Orcs, who would have no other options but to serve someone like him, but who still had the trustworthiness, tallness, individuality and so forth of a man.

As Pippin and Merry figured out, he used Men as guards because he couldn't trust Orcs in that way, not being able to control them in the same way that Sauron could, and he probably had large number of Dunlenders working at Isengard for centuries before he went bad.

I think support of your theory Bill in this regard is the Uruks such as Ugluck that worked for Saruman were not so much slaves but in it as part of bargain relative to what he could offer. This may have signified a difference between them and other, earlier Uruks that served Sauron.

But I still believe that Saruman's Uruks were orcs first, and not really hybrids with Men, even if he used his hybrids in breeding more Uruks.

The hybrids seem to be solely Saruman's doing, but still primarily men, with greater penchant for evil and foulness.
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Old 11-10-2002, 08:39 AM   #26
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MotW, I’m not speculating that Saruman’s fighting uruk-hai were any different from Saurons, though I think one could make an argument to that effect. The theory involves the origin of the first uruk-hai in Mordor.

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Whether in the process Sauron and later Saruman used other powers, or even some admixture with Men "genes" to give them greater height or straightness, is possible.
On the contrary, I argue that it is not only possible, it is necessary according to the principle given above: “The hroa can not possess a quality not governed by the fea; likewise, the fea cannot, through corruption, possess a greater power that it does not already possess according to its nature.”

Sauron’s tinkering with orcs goes beyond mere interbreeding to bring out a certain quality. The uruk-hai show up with powers that exceed those possessed by the nature of orcs. There logically had to be an essential change, and the introduction of interbreeding [edit: with humans] seems to explain this essential change. Saruman’s goblin men were not the same as uruk-hai, but similar enough not to be ignored. Sauron’s uruk-hai are much more subtle than Saruman’s goblin men. As MotW points out Sauron’s creation of the uruk-hai was a long process, more than enough time to produce just the right mixture of man and orc to retain an orc’s lack of free will, and just enough man to give the hroa a greater vitality.

I would like to thank everyone who has helped me along in my speculations these last couple of weeks. I plan on posting a summary of redacts sometime in the near future.

[ November 10, 2002: Message edited by: Bill Ferny ]
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