Tolkien Gateway

Eastern Orcs

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Revision as of 09:42, 15 October 2021

Eastern Orcs
People
John Howe - Orc Swordsman.jpg
"Orc Swordsman" by John Howe
General Information
OriginsOrcs of Morgoth fleeing the Battle of Powers
LocationsEast
RivalriesMen
Physical Description
DistinctionsUnruly
"But futher east there were more and stronger kinds, descendants of Morgoth's kingship, but long masterless during his occupation of Thangorodrim, they were yet wild and ungovernable, preying upon one another and upon Men (whether good or evil)."
The Nature of Middle-earth, Note on the Delay of Gil-galad and the Númenóreans


The Eastern Orcs were the Orcs inhabiting the far eastern regions of Middle-earth, answering to no master since Morgoth made the fortress of Angband his seat of power. They were an unruly folk, as prone to troubling Men as they were to in-fighting, yet stronger than their northern brethren that had escaped Morgoth's disastrous defeat.

History

Scions of the Orcs that had presumably evaded the Valar by when they took Melkor prisoner in the aftermath of the Battle of Powers, the Eastern Orcs were among the sturdiest of that foul race, certainly more fearsome than those that remained hidden in the North. Becoming accustomed to this autonomous way of living throughout the time of Melkor's captivity and far away from his domain, they became an unmanageable rabble by the time he returned and settled in Thangorodrim. They were as likely to hunt Men, regardless of their allegiance, as they were to turn on one another owing to the lack of a central will to organize them.

Due to the Eastern Orcs' remote location they survived Morgoth's defeat in the War of Wrath, thus being more numerous than other remnants of evil forces. Even by the time of Sauron's early rise, the Eastern Orcs were still a disorderly faction and did not bend the knee to him, ensuring his grip on the southern and eastern lands was not as firm he would have hoped. While Sauron assumed a fair hue to deceive the Elves, they held him in disdain and laughed at him.[1]

References

  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, Carl F. Hostetter (ed.), The Nature of Middle-earth, "Part Three. The World, its Lands, and its Inhabitants: XVIII. Note on the Delay of Gil-galad and the Númenóreans", p. 370