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Orcs in sunlight?????

Snaga

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A great post MB. But if the Uruk-Hai were really just great orcs such as had issued from Mordor long before, then the puzzlement of Aragorn at the distances travelled under sunlight by Sarumans orcs is strange. You would think he would have been used to that from his days as Thorongil.:confused:
 

Red Istar

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A good question. Perhaps since Saruman had not yet begun to work openly for the shadow? He porbably would not have had orcs working for him yet. :)
 

jallan

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I seems that Saruman’s new Uruk-hai contain a Mannish strain which explains why they can endure the Sun better than other Orcs. At least that is Treebeard’s opinion. That Saruman also has obvious crossbreeds of Men and Orcs among his following suggests that Treebeard is right.

That doesn’t mean all Uruks/Uurk-hai had a Mannish strain. Most were simply the largest and strongest kinds of Orcs. But Saruman’s Uruk-hai were somewhat different.
 

Snaga

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Jallan... I am inclined to agree. For all the scholarly merits of MB's post, the theory that the Uruk-Hai were no different to the Mordor uruks, and that there was no mannish strain in them doesnt seem right to me. Yes there were men who a big dash of orc in them, such as the ruffians that took over the Shire or that were in league with Bill Ferny. But the Uruk-Hai were orcs with a big dash of man in them.

In response to Red Istar: no, that's not right. Because I was referring to the point when Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli are examining the dead at Parth Galen, after Boromir's death. To me, it seems clear that Aragorn would have encountered Mordor uruks in service to Gondor in his younger days.
The Two Towers, The Departure of Boromir
And Aragorn looked on the slain, and he said: "Here are many who are not the folk of Mordor. Some are from the north, from the Misty Mountains, if I know anything of orcs and their kinds. And here are many who are strange to me. Their gear is not after the manner of Orcs at all!

There were four goblin-soldiers of greater stature, swart, slant-eyed, with thick legs and large hands.
It then goes on to describe their mannish weapons, leading to the ambiguity as to whether they were just large orcs with unusual kit, or actually something new.

Its an ambiguity that is quite enduring. Tolkien, narrating, only ever refers to 'orcs' and 'men' in all his descriptions of Saruman's forces. But Gamling talks of
"But these creatures of Isengard, these half-orcs and goblin-men that the foul craft of Saruman has bred...
Later Merry says
"I saw the enemy go: endless lines of marching Orcs; and troops of them mounted on great wolves. And there were battalions of Men, too. Many of them carried torches and in the flare I could see their faces. Many 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 to," said Aragorn. "We had many of these half-orcs to deal with at a Helm's Deep."
It strikes me that this shows that a clear distinction between the Uruk-Hai and Half-Orcs, since Merry was well-used to the Uruk-Hai of course! But the less obvious orcishness of the Southerner at Bree is a clue I feel. There seems to have been a variety of orc-man cross breeds: some more orcish, and some more mannish. The Uruk-Hai were at the orcish end of the scale and the Southerner at the Mannish end.
 

jallan

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One may also note that Merry and Pippin cannot be expected to have a clear idea of what Uruks normally look like.

Their only previous personal experience with Orcs is in the dark caverns of Moria and most of those Orcs were not Uruks.

Grishnâkh, for what it is worth, was unlike in appearance to Sauron’s Uruk-hai. Whether Grishnâkh was also an Uruk of some kind, or was arguably an Uruk, or was some kind of administrative messenger Orc, Tolkien does not tell.

But it was likely enough that Grishnâkh would be considered an Uruk of Mordor. Grishnâkh and his boys also run during the day time (but then so do the Orcs from Moria).

But Tolkien’s implication seems to be that this is done under the influence of Saruman’s Uruk-hai who aren’t very much bothered by the sun and don’t care if the Moria Orcs feel weak and sick.

Grishnâkh and his Mordor Orcs, as soldier Orcs, would of course be better able to endure hardship. Also, though Tolkien does not explain why they rejoined Uglûk’s troops, one may expect it was under extreme pressure from their superiors to keep an eye on the two Hobbits and look for their chance.

Better the Sun one hates than the Nzagûl who hates you.
 

Serendur

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I´m not sure if I remember this right, but I think that I read somewhere (perhaps in one of those History of Middle-earth books) that it was actually Sauron that created the Uruk-hai!
Any thoughts on that?:confused:
 

jallan

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In Morgoth’s Ring (HoME 10), “Myths Transformed”, Text X, Orcs, we find the idea that while Melkor may have first devised Orcs or the idea of Orcs that it was Sauron was principally responsible for their breeding. But there is no particular mention of Uruks or of any particular kinds of Orcs here.

From The War of the Jewels (HoME 11), “Quendi and Eldar”, Appendix C, Tolkien gives some account of the various forms used to refer to Orcs and mentions:
The word uruk that occurs in the Black Speech, devised (its is said) by Sauron to serve as a lingua franca for his subjets, was probably borrowed by him from the Elvish tongues of earlier times. It referred, however, specially to the trained and disciplined Orcs of the regiments of Mordor. Lesser breeds seem to have been called snaga.
Presumably there were from the earliest times soldier Orcs who would, after the creation of the Black Speech, be called Uruks, or rather Uruk with whatever plural indication might be supplied in Black Speech. It is guessed but not altogether proved that Uruk-hai is a kind of plural of Uruk, perhaps literally Uruk-folk.

But Sauron did not create Saurman’s Uruk-hai.
 

Snaga

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Hey, don't knock it until you've tried it!:p

Jallan: I am inclined to agree. Grishnakh, remarkably, runs further than the Uruk-Hai of course. He disappears after failing to persuade the orcs to head east across the river, to consult with the Winged Messenger. He then returns with a largish group of Mordor orcs, and manages to overtake Ugluk and co. It might be a little curious that Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli didnt see this second gang of orcs, as presumably they must have been quite close at some stage.

As for Grishnakh's purpose, this seems clear enough: 'to make sure Orders are carried out'. He says this fairly diplomatically, and Ugluk doesnt wait to find out what Grishnakh's orders are! It becomes clear, when he tries to sneak off with the hobbits.

Merry and Pippin's observation of the difference between Moria orcs and the Isengarders is clear enough, but when Grishnakh's mordor orcs appear, we don't get a comparison. We know of course that there are a variety of Mordor orcs. Frodo and Sam travel with some 'ordinary' Mordor orcs who run into some uruks from Barad-Dur. Grishnakh could be either of these. I suspect he is relatively ordinary in build but smarter than average; but I have no evidence.

I wonder how much of this will come across in the extended version of the movie? Probably not very much.
 

lightingstrike

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Saurman made a signficent improvemen witht the birthing of The Uruk-Hai. They are now able to run in sun and also they do not require a lot of sleep or rest. Their body armor also is a big improvement as it is able to resist arrows and torches pretty easily. Their running and fighting skills are also improved as they are not dumb creatures like the regular old orks of old. They can come up with brilliant battle plans and schiems all on their own without the advice from a commader such as Saurman or Sauron. Hope it helps:D
 

Snaga

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Orcs of all types have no problems formulating battle plans. Examples:
- The attack on Isildur at the Gladden Fields
- The Battle of Five Armies

They are less likely to form huge armies and go to war without an 'external' leader, but that hardly was changed with the uruk-hai of Saruman!
 

Red Istar

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Originally posted by snaga1
Orcs of all types have no problems formulating battle plans. Examples:
- The attack on Isildur at the Gladden Fields
- The Battle of Five Armies

They are less likely to form huge armies and go to war without an 'external' leader, but that hardly was changed with the uruk-hai of Saruman!
Aye, 'tis true. Verily, I wouldst say battle is one thing that orcs doest do well. :p
 

joxy

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Originally posted by snaga1
I wonder how much of this will come across in the extended version of the movie? Probably not very much.
There's a good "Saruman's orcs meet Mordor orcs" scene - you should approve of it - let us know.
 

Snaga

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I do not. It is unexplained and adds nothing. It is irrelevant in the context, since Saruman is not at variance with Sauron in the movies.

Some of the other extra orc bits get my approval!:D
 

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