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Topic: Ulairi or Nazgul

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Royal Guard of Menegroth - Rank 5
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Date: Aug 7, 2006
Ulairi or Nazgul

In the knowlegde center there is a question on one of the quizzes that asks what the true name of the Ringwraiths is. The correct answer is given as Ulairi.

The reasoning behind this is that Nazgul is the name given in the black speech which is supposed to be derived from Quenya. I am not willing to just accept this answer as it would then mean that the true name of all things in Arda would be whatever the Quenya equivalent is, and that just doesnt sound right.

I may be completely off on this next point, but isnt Ulairi from Noldorin Quenya, a language that was banned by Thingol in the First Age. If I'm correct on that, then it would be highly unlikely that Elves with good manners would use such a word openly, unless Noldorin Quenya came back into style in the Third Age.

I look forward to hearing from all the linguists and loremasters out there.




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Therefore I say that we will go on, and this doom I add: the deeds that we shall do shall be the matter of song until the last days of Arda
Witchking of Angmar - Rank 10
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Date: Aug 7, 2006
true name if the Ringwraiths?
there is no such thing...how could someone decide if a name is "real" or "not real" ?
Nazgul is the name in Black Speech, Ringwraiths in Common Speech or Ulairi in Elvish.
So...how could one decide which of these was their "real" name ?
You can't.
So, in this case, I would personally say it makes no sense...
There isn't really need for a lore or linguistic discussion, because in such cases, there are no real or unreal names...
just like debating what was the real name for Celebdil/Silvertine/Zirakzigil...


indeed, probably the first name they were called by was "Nazgul", and it was probably used by Sauron after drawing the 9 Lords of Men on his side...but this doesn't mean it was also more "real" then other names.

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
Samwise Gamgee - rank 9
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Well perhaps as the Black speech was based around Elvish we could assume that the base language would yeild a more correct answer (Ulairi)...


And in addition Elvish was the first of the languages so perhaps all the others have some derivitive to it...



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My Master Sauron the Great bids thee Welcome....
Witchking of Angmar - Rank 10
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no, you don't get my point...
it doesn't matter which language was first or more used

you can NEVER say that a name is more "real" then another

a more correct answer?
as I said, why would for example be Celebdil more correct then Silvertine?
would the fact that Elvish is older make Celebdil a more correct name? Of course not, it is actually ridiculous to say that.

the point is, no matter in what language, all names are just as correct, the fact that the question is about more or less "real" names is the problem here

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
Royal Guard of Menegroth - Rank 5
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Wow, I can say I didn't expect those answers.

Im going to completely disagree with Quenya being the first language. The Ainur spoke before the Firstborn and I think they count as people's of Arda.

Regarding languages derived from others, I can't say that I believe that the original language is more "valid" just because it came first.

As for TM, I cannot completely agree with you. Naming has been very important in quite a few mythologies, even Tolkien's, but I do agree that their is no reason to give the High Elvish name for the Ringwraiths more significance. The mods of this site feel otherwise.

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Therefore I say that we will go on, and this doom I add: the deeds that we shall do shall be the matter of song until the last days of Arda
Valar
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In most cases I'd say you are right, TM.  At least in the naming of places, there is no 'correct' name, it's just whatever each individual race, individual tongue decides to name it.  Then there really can't be a correct name.


I think we must distinguish between a name and a group/race.  Something can have a 'true name,' and that is their real, recognizable name.  For instance, Aragorn, and all other names he is given (Wingfoot, Strider,...etc) would be his nicknames, not his 'real name.'


Where groups of individuals (be it small groups are a large race) really have no 'real name,' and can be called all sorts of different names by different tongues and, as you say there would be no 'correct name' for them.  The Nazgul, aren't a race, but they are a classification, a group, and different tongues have different names for them.  Therefor anyone of them could be correct, because it's not pointing at a specific Nazgul, but the group in general.  Another example being the Istari, or wizards. 


And even people can't have 'true names.'  Let's take the Lord of the Nazgul, he's never given a name, but is referred to by several titles to seperate him from the rest of his buddies...one being Lord of the Nazgul,then we have the Witch-King, and he can even be referred to as Angmar. 


But, I do think we can have the 'true names' of individuals, or their 'proper' name...like Elrond, Aragorn, Merry, Boromir...the list goes on.  But, when classifying places or groups, I agree that there would be no 'true/correct' name.



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I am Lórien, Lord of Dreams, my true name is 'Irmo' in Quenya.
Witchking of Angmar - Rank 10
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of course nicknames don't count as "real" names, at least not as long as a name exists
and indeed the Istari/Wizards example is very well given in this situation...

so, to conclude this, I would like to recommend The One to perhaps change the question...

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
Royal Guard of Menegroth - Rank 5
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Sorry but I couldnt resist...

Are you going to petition The One, Iluvatar, or Eru?



Oh and I would like to thank both TM and Lord Lorien. This discussion was much better than the answer I received about the Black Speech being a derivative of Quenya.

-- Edited by Celethil at 03:12, 2006-08-08

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Therefore I say that we will go on, and this doom I add: the deeds that we shall do shall be the matter of song until the last days of Arda
Anarion, Son of Elendil - rank 8
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Date: Aug 8, 2006
RE: Ulairi or Nazgul

I am not sure you can really 'petition' against him...he does know a considerable amount....


But I suppose you could always try TM, there's a first time for everything....



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Utúlie'n  aurë!  Aiya  Eldalië  ar  Atanatári,  utúlie'n  aurë! 
Auta  i  lómë! 
Aurë entuluva!

Witchking of Angmar - Rank 10
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Date: Aug 8, 2006
"against" him?
no, not at all...I am simply recommending that the question be changed as the answer can not be clearly given

and Celethil, as far as the languages are concerned, much more information can be found in Appendix F from LOTR. And there, among many other things it is clearly said that the Black Speech was devised by Sauron during the Dark Years.

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
Royal Guard of Menegroth - Rank 5
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Date: Aug 11, 2006
LoL Thanks for the reference TM.

Since I gave you the link to the Ardalambion, I think you know that I am quite aware of the origins of the Black Speech.

Few people know about Valarin. Heh.

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Therefore I say that we will go on, and this doom I add: the deeds that we shall do shall be the matter of song until the last days of Arda
Witchking of Angmar - Rank 10
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Date: Aug 11, 2006
sorry for the misunderstanding
I didn't want it to sound like I was not agreeing with your statement about the Black Speech beeing a derivative from Quenya, I do agree, just wanted to add, as extra information for the other members when the language was created.

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
Elf of Rivendell - Rank 2
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"Nazgûl" is a Black Speech word (both singular and plural) literally meaning "ring-wraith", whereas "Úlairi" is a Quenya plural that might be speculated to mean "the Unholy Ones", though its etymology and meaning are uncertain, but it definitely does not mean "Ring-wraith" or "Black Rider" or any other name known for them. Given that the former is more specific and the latter is never used within LotR, I'd be inclined to go with the former, but it is really a matter of something like picking between Incánus and Tharkûn. Certainly the Elves would have never used the Black Speech word.

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Royal Guard of Menegroth - Rank 5
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Maybe you could answer the secondary queston Tyrhael. Since the ban of Noldorin Quenya, by Thingol, did its open use ever emerge again among the Elves?

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Therefore I say that we will go on, and this doom I add: the deeds that we shall do shall be the matter of song until the last days of Arda
Elf of Rivendell - Rank 2
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The use of Quenya did not re-emerge; while it was the native tongue of some in Middle-earth, like Galadriel, it was used mainly for lore, and was a 'dead' language like Latin. Sindarin was the conversational, everyday vernacular, though in some parts it was heavily influenced by Silvan elvish. But there were not many speakers around anyway; Tolkien said in his letters that there were more Men around in the Third Age who knew Quenya or Sindarin than Elves that knew either!

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