VIII. Angband Orcish

I have also called this Ur-Orcish (Swedish “urorkiska”), Proto-Orcish and First Age-Orcish but I think Angband-Orcish really is the most appropriate term.

One of the basic ideas of Zhâburi B (and one of the major things that differs from Zhâburi A)* is that Sauron based his Black Speech on Orcish and that Orcish really is part of the Elvish language family (see Elvish, Orcish and the Black Speech). Hence some kind of sketch of this Proto-Orcish is needed.

I imagine that the foundation of this Orcish is Primitive Elvish which was spoken by the Elves who were taken by Melkor. The Orcish of the First Age must have been different both in time and space, with one Orcish dialect of Utumno and another of Angband. These language developed with the Orcs as they were transformed from Elves. The dialect presented here is the Orcish of Angband which the Orcs spoke during the classical period of Silmarillion,. i.e. The War of the Jewels, The period from about the rise of the Moon and the Sun and the return of Noldor to Middle Earth, to the War of Wrath. It is the language that Tour understood, as mentioned in The Fall of Gondolin.

Orcish speech is probably the most varied of all the languages of Arda but the variant spoken in Angband during the last years of the First Age was probably the last – and only? – coherent Orcish Speech. I imagine Angband Orcish was quite stable as long as the Orcs were under Morgoth’s rule because of the need to organise the mass armies of Orcs. Later, after the War of Wrath the Orcs scattered and without a central authority a myriad of Orcish dialects emerged so that after a thousand years they could not understand each other. When Sauron wanted to gather the Orcs under his command, when he founded Mordor, he used the Angband Orcish, which he knew very well, as a natural base for his Black Speech.

This is an attempt to sketch this Angband Orcish as it was before it split up into several different dialects. The purpose for this sketch is to provide a basic vocabulary for the Zâburi dialect of the Black Speech. In addition it provides us with the means to systematically take Elvish roots and words from primitive Elvish and transform them to suitable words for Zhâburi. And it can be used to sketch and develop the other Orcish dialects that emerged in the first millennium of the Second Age.  

This sketch will be published in parts as I create it.

That Orcish was a base for Black Speech and that Orcish was an Elvish language was an idea I had when I worked on Zhâburi A but it did not have any impact on the actual development of the language.