The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Origins
The native tongues of the Orcs
Race
Pronunciation
o'rkish
Other names
Sometimes spelt Orcish1

Indexes:

About this entry:

  • Updated 21 March 2011
  • This entry is complete

Orkish

The languages of the Orcs

A general term for the jumble of languages used by the Orcs, composed from corrupted borrowings from other languages of Middle-earth. The variations in Orkish between different tribes and types of Orc were so great that it was often useless for communication, and so a standard language was necessary. Sauron devised his Black Speech for this purpose in Mordor, but in practice the Common Tongue was more normally used.


Notes

1

In some older editions of The Lord of the Rings, the spelling Orcish appears in Appendix E. This is an error; Tolkien recommended the form Orkish, and later editions have corrected the Appendix to use this preferred spelling.

See also...

Orc-speech, Sharkey, Sharkû

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