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Topic: Lost Swords

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Royal Guard of Menegroth - Rank 5
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Date: Oct 3, 2006
Lost Swords

My memory is very faint on this, and I guess Im being lazy by asking rather than looking this up, but didnt the Goblin King from the Hobbit recognize Glamdring and Orcrist when he saw them?

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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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yes he did
"They knew the sword at once..."

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
Royal Guard of Menegroth - Rank 5
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Isnt that a bit odd? How did he recognize a sword that was well over 6,000 years old? Especially since the swords were lost in the fall of Gondolin. I'm just mentioning this because I think there is more to the story of Glamdring and Orcrist than there appears.

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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
Lee
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Yes, it is kind of odd . . . Maybe there are tales of the swords, though, and they know them well enough to know the swords when they see them.

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Royal Guard of Menegroth - Rank 5
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I thought about that too, but it seems that Turgon would have had to have killed an enormous amount of Orcs for them to remember a blade 6,000 years later. Especially one that was lost and not seen for such a length of time.

Even the One Ring was forgotten about in time by men. Or at least not immediately recognized by even the wise.

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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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there was probably grat fear in their hearts
"They hated it and hated worse any one that carried it"
what is interesting is that not only the great goblin noticed that, but all his soldiers at once
so there clearly was knowledge of the swords among all orcs
and let us not forget how the swords probably ended up in the cave of the trolls
in an earlier thread iI gave a quote showing that Elrond believed the trolls had stolen the swords from a goblin keep somewhere in the mountains. so it could very well be that these goblins, descendants of the orcs from the first age had had the swords in their possesion, but had lost them to the trolls.

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
Royal Guard of Menegroth - Rank 5
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We did discuss this in another thread, and I still think there is more to the story of Glamdring and Orcrist than there appears. Orcs are not incredibly bright and it just seems odd that they would hold onto such feared and despised weapons for such a long period of time.







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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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however, in this case I guess my theory about how the swords ended up in the trolls cave makes sense
you don't have to be a bright orc - if the swords were in your possesion for a while, and you recently lost them, you'll know them when you see them again
and probably while the swords were kept by the orcs, every orc was curious from time to time and asked..."ugh, what are these here?"
and so each orc knew what they were, and the information was passed on
of course, it is only a theory but as I said, it does make sense to me

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
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It makes sense over a relatively short period of time, but not over 6 millenia.

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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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any better theory then Celethil?
I doubt the Orcs could read the Elvish inscriptions and realise what the swords were as Elrond did.
Oral information is in my opinion the only PLAUSABLE expalanation

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
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Of course I'm not sure what became of the swords after Gondolin, but my best speculation is that they were taken by Orcs and at some point they came into the possession of Elves or Men again and were used against Orcs in the Second Age, thus keeping the fear alive and well.

At some point the owners were slain and the swords were taken again by Orcs or Trolls or whomever. I am guessing they would have been used by multiple owners over 6000 years. Gandalf and Thorin just being the last owners that we know of in the History of Middle-Earth.

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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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still, in the book it only says "when the fair Elves of Gondolin hunted them in the hills or did battle before their walls"
Tolkien mentions no other use of the swords against the Orcs in the past.
of course your hypothesis is just as plausable, unfortunately we can only speculate

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
Soldier of Beleriand - Rank 3
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Maybe they recognized them because they glowed brightly, unlike most other weapons? But that only explains them knowing the swords were Elvish, not specific weapons. I also found it more than a bit fishy that they instantly recognized the two swords by name, though. If they were forgotten enough to be abandoned in a troll-cave, it's unlikely orcs (who aren't immortal and this generation probably has never seen them) would know them by sight.

My point is: I have no idea, but I'd like to know too.

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Soldier of the East - Rank 4
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I have not read the hobbit in a while, but I thought that the orcs did not know the names of the swords and called them Bite and Biten" or something like that. I also (and this is completely speculative) think that if the trolls stole the swords from those orcs, than the orcs might have thought that Gandalf and company killed and stole the swords from the trolls.  

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Witchking of Angmar - Rank 10
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Beater and Biter
and yes, I agree with that. they didn't know the swords were named Glamdring and Orcrist, that is clear, but they recognized them very quickly.

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
Royal Guard of Menegroth - Rank 5
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Even more interesting, as I highly doubt that such names would have survived two ages.

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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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Indeed...unless, again as I said the names of the 2 swords were orally passed down from generation to generation.
There is one more possibility however.

The Great Goblin could have been a Maia.
There are hints in the History of Middle-earth series of books, (especially in Morgoth's Ring in the section "Myths Transformed"), that some Orc leaders, such as the First Age's Boldog, or the Great Goblin encountered by Bilbo and the Dwarves, may in fact have been fallen Maiar which had taken Orc form:

"Some of these things may have been delusions and phantoms but some were no doubt shapes taken by the servants of Melkor, mocking and degrading the very forms of the children. For Melkor had in his service great numbers of Maiar, who had the power, as their Master, of taking visible and tangible shape in Arda." (Morgoth's Ring, "Myths transformed", text X)

"Boldog () is a name that occurs many times in the tales of the War. But it is possible that Boldog was not a personal name, and either a title, or else the name of a kind of creature: the Orc-formed Maiar, only less formidable than the Balrogs" (Author's footnote to the text X)

" Melkor had corrupted many spirits - some great as Sauron, or less as Balrogs. The least could have been primitive Orcs." (Author's note to text)

This is again a theory, but it does make sense. The Great Goblin could have known what the words and could have told the Orcs about his perhaps, personal memmories about the swords...maybe he was there at the Fall of Gondolin, maybe he was the one to take them in the Misty Mountains.

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
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You know, I never thought about that. I've read some (not nearly all of it, but some) of Morgoth's ring, but have never come across the fact that some of the greater orcs might have been fallen maiar.


Is it to be asumed that they had greater strength then the other orcs?



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Witchking of Angmar - Rank 10
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yes.
Orcs were warlike creatures and in such a society the strongest would win.
also they would probably be wiser, since beeing Maiar meant living for much much longer then other Orcs. They would have much more experience in battle, and would know many more things, making them wiser as well.
that doesn't meant that any orc chieftain was a Maia. But some COULD have been.

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
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Do you have evidence that this orc was a fallen maia?


I know that some might have been, but what about this one.



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Witchking of Angmar - Rank 10
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"There in the shadows on a large flat stone sat a tremendous goblin with a huge head, and armed goblins were standing round him carrying the axes and the bent swords that they use."

The fact he was unusually large could be a sign that he was not a normal Goblin, but a Maia that took the shape of a Goblin, only larger then the others to show he was the leader, and to frighten his opponents.

"Not that it will do you much good Thorin Oakenshield, I know too much about your folk already; but let's have the truth, or I will prepare something particulary uncomfortable for you!"

Thorin took the name of Oakenshield at the Battle of Nanduhirion, the one that ended the War of Dwarves and Orcs.
If the Great Goblin knew his surname, and also knew much about his folk, it shows he was wise and also one could assume that he had been there when the events took place.
It would make sense that as a Maia orc chieftain he had served another presumable Maia orc chieftain during the war, Azog.
But if he had been there, that it meant he was at least 160 years old, more then an average goblin.

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Honor, Freedom, Fatherland
Soldier of the East - Rank 4
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Interesting...

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