Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Significance Of The Word 'Uruk' On Rings Of Power

A young Hobbit once deduced that the closer you are from danger, the further you are from harm, which doesn't quite (ahem) ring true following the events of this week's "The Rings of Power." Amazon's epic predecessor to "The Lord of the Rings" turned things up a notch following the attack from Adar (Joseph Mawle) that ended in an all-too-brief victory for Arondir (Ismael Cruz Córdova) and Galadriel (Morfydd Clark). While The Southlanders were saved, Adar's plan came into effect even while he was captured, resulting in a Middle-earth-changing event that cracked the land down the center. But while this marked the beginning of Mordor (at least how Amazon sees it), there was a slightly smaller earth-shaking surprise concerning the dark elf orc leader.

After Adar was chained up, Galadriel had some choice words with the member of her kind that has been converted to a darker way of life. It's an intense examination of who this new foe is and what his aims are (though we learn all too late), but also what Adar's alignment with malevolent forces has turned him into. Galadriel calls her captive out, only for Adar to correct her, leading to a shocking revelation and a major change in the future of Middle-earth.

Adar is one of the first phases of Uruks

Described at one point as "The Sons of the Dark" and "The first Orcs," Adar corrects her with a term that any fan of Middle-earth would no doubt get chills over. "'Uruk.' We prefer 'Uruk,'" he says. It's a significant revelation that, after putting recent pieces together, does make sense for the dark elf's place in the world.

In Tolkien's original works, "Uruk" is another term for "orc," which comes from Sauron's Black Speech he devised in Mordor. With that said, the current events of "The Rings of Power" suggest that the language wouldn't have been invented yet, as Mordor is only now being made. Instead, Sauron may have created the term during his initial encounter with Adar, which he goes into detail about. It's also eventually used for Saruman's manufactured army that he makes in "The Lord of the Rings."

Bred in "The Fellowship of the Ring" firstly to track down Hobbits and then "destroy the world of men," Uruk-Hais ("orc-folk") are bigger and faster than already terrifying orcs, while also being able to go out in sunlight. Saruman discusses their history, saying, "They were elves once, taken by the dark powers, tortured and mutilated. A ruined and terrible form of life." 

So far, Adar's current state suggests he's gone through a similar routine but doesn't look as monstrous as the later versions. This begs the question, why such a difference in appearance, and what did Adar mean by "we prefer?"

Is Adar one Uruk of many in The Rings of Power?

Since his debut, it's been inferred that the dark elf is the only one who has fallen away from his kind and is seen as a great leader to orcs, but could his recent talk with Galadriel suggest there's more than one of Adar's type wandering the land? He could well be the first "Uruk" in this age, but the fact that Adar refers to himself as "we" and Galadriel already knows of his kind hints that there might be more out there, and the recent eruption may have just got their attention.

Like a beacon for dark forces, the eruption of Mount Doom could see Adar being reunited with other Uruks like himself, who have their own army to deploy, which could lead to a bigger problem than Galadriel anticipated. Also, while Adar might speak of Sauron's demise, we know that can't be the case as the rings have yet to be made. Might this recent catastrophe be enough to lure the Dark Lord into the open and meet his supposed old foe face-to-face? We can only wait until our next epic visit to Middle-earth to find out.