Zhâburi – A Black Speech of Mordor

One Speech to rule them all

Category: words

The Change of the Ring Verse

During the years that I have developed Zhâburi the Ring Veres has always functioned as a central text that shows the changes of the language. In the beginning the change was mostly grammatical but later on the words have changed. I have for a long time been thinking of publishing a word list and an analysis of the Zhâburi Ring Verse. I started on a word list and immediately started to question the choice of words and I changed four of the words. All of them from Svartiska to Primitive Elvish roots. The new words are marked in bold.

Gakh nazg ghal-shidizala golugut-za
Udu gazatshakh-za gûdrûd-bulshidiza
Krith bartadash-diza gûrum tarkgut-za
Ash shakhbûrz-za sûl-bulshidiza
Al burghi gâtugulûk Dûrbûrz-ishi

ghal “sky” instead of ‘nût’; ghal from elvish root ƷEL “sky”. 
gut “lord” instead of ‘goth”; gut from Etym. KOT(H) “strive, quarrel”.
rûd “hall” instead of ‘had’; rûd from PE rǭda “cave”.
bart– “doom”, “fate”, “judge”,instead of ‘fund-’; bart- from PE m(b)arat “doom, fate”.

Tha last version was

Gakh nazg nût-shidizala golugoth-za
Udu gazatshakh-za gûd’hâd-bulshidiza
Krith fundadash-diza gûrum tarkgoth-za
Ash shakhbûrz-za sûl-bulshidiza
Al burghi gâtugulûk Dûrbûrz-ishi


Bear in Zhâburi

My name is Björn which means ‘bear’ so I coined a word for ‘bear’ in Zhâburi B bruk. It is a etymological transformation from Primitive Elvish *morókō (Q. morco; S/N. brôg).

Kirkhi – The Runes of Mordor

A couple of days ago I proposed runes of Mordor based on Angerthas Moria which I called Angerthas Mordor but a comment by OneBehindTheHair pointed out that even though Orc might be using Cirth they were, at least at the time of the War of the Ring, not used by Mordor

I’m not sure if Mordor actually used any variation of the Angerthas. The Uruk-hai of Isengard wore an Angerthas ‘S’ rune on their helmets, which is the only known case of Orcs/Orcish societies using Elf runes.
“‘S is for Sauron,’ said Gimli. ‘That is easy to read’
‘Nay!’ said Legolas. ‘Sauron does not use the Elf-runes.’”
-The Departure of Boromir, The Two Towers

Still I think it is fitting that there are some kind of Mordor runes. Tolkien mentions runes in association with orcs who most probably comes from Mordor in The Two Tower, The Black Gate is Closed

They had not come very far from the road, and yet even in so short a space they had seen scars of the old wars, and the newer wounds made by the Orcs and other foul servants of the Dark Lord: a pit of uncovered filth and refuse; trees hewn down wantonly and left to die, with evil runes or the fell sign of the Eye cut in rude strokes on their bark. 

These “runes” could of course be the Mâshur signs so there is no need for proper runes. And so I have designed runes of Mordor derived from Mâshur, still named Kirkhi. The diffence between Mâshur and Kirhki is the tools they are used to write with. Mâshur is written with a pencil or carved in stone. Runes are designed for being carved in wood – that is the purpose of the 45˚ lines, horisontal lines merge with year rings. I imagine a development scenario were Sauron at first uses Tengwar to write the Black Speech which soon is transformed into Mâshur. The servants of Sauron already know about runes and a rune variant of Mâshur is developed. The universal word for rune in Middle Earth is Sindarin certh, (plural cirth) wich by the twisting of Orcs becomes kirkh (the uvular r shifts the dental th in front of the mouth to velar kh in the back).

Note: On some of the signs used in the chart:

I.3 þ= th
I.4 ð = dh
III.3  ʃ = sh
III.4 ж = zh
I wonder why I in IV.2 didn’t use ɣ for gh. And IV.4 r is of course IPA ʀ

Kirkh mâshur

A new word: gûldur

On the site Eldamo a “collection of documents is a lexicon of Tolkien’s invented languages” I just found a Tolkien Black Speech word I wasn’t aware of ‘gûldur‘ “sorcery” which is really similar to Sindarin ‘guldur’ “black arts, sorcery” as in  Dol Guldur “Hill of Sorcery”. It’s obviously related to ‘gûl’ as in ‘nazgûl’. Luckely this word fits quite well into Zhâburi because one of the really old and fixed noun suffixes is -ur with a lengthened stemvowel, as in ‘zhâbur’ (language) from ‘zhab’. I already have the word ‘gûl’ (wraith (of Sauron), “any one of the major invisible servants of Sauron dominated entirely by his will”; Someone with deep knowledge of Eä from the dark perspective). So I just have to figure out why the d is there in the middle.