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"Their task was to circumvent Sauron: to bring help to the few tribes of Men that had rebelled from Melkor-worship, to stir up rebellion... and after his first fall to search out his hiding and to cause dissension and disarray among the dark East... They must have had very great influence on the history of the Second Age and Third Age in weakening and disarraying the forces of the East... who both in the Second Age and Third Age otherwise have... outnumbered the West."
J.R.R. Tolkien

The Blue Wizards (or the Ithryn Luin) were two mysterious characters of Middle-earth, named as such because they both wore sea-blue robes.

History

"I think that they went as emissaries to distant regions, east and south... Missionaries to enemy occupied lands as it were. What success they had I do not know; but I fear that they failed, as Saruman did, though doubtless in different ways; and I suspect they were founders or beginners of secret cults and "magic" traditions that outlasted the fall of Sauron."
J.R.R. Tolkien

The existence of five Wizards is only mentioned briefly in The Lord of the Rings. In J.R.R. Tolkien's Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age it is told that aside from Saruman, Gandalf, and Radagast, there were "others of the Istari who went into the east of Middle-earth, and do not come into these tales."[1] Tolkien also writes in Unfinished Tales that the two Wizards were sent to the East whose names were "Alatar" and "Pallando". Alatar was a Maia of the Vala Oromë who chose him to go to Middle-earth. Alatar asked his friend Pallando to join him on his mission.[2]

The time that the Blue Wizards arrived in Middle-earth is uncertain. In Unfinished Tales, Tolkien wrote that the five Istari came to Middle-earth together in TA 1000. However, in The Peoples of Middle-earth, they are said to have arrived in the Second Age, around the year SA 1600, the time of the forging of the One Ring.[3] Their mission was directed at weakening Sauron's forces in the eastern and southern parts of Middle-earth, whereas the other Istari were focused on the west.

It is also uncertain whether they failed in their mission, but it seems most likely. In Unfinished Tales Tolkien writes that, "indeed of all the Istari, one only remained faithful," referring to Gandalf. Also in letter 211, he said, "what success they had I do not know; but I fear that they failed, as Saruman did, though doubtless in different ways; I suspect that they were founders or beginners of secret cults and 'magic' traditions that outlasted the fall of Sauron". [4] However, in a text found in The Peoples of Middle-earth, alternate set of names are given, Morinehtar and Rómestámo (or Rome(n)star), "Darkness-slayer" and "East-helper". It is not clear whether these names were intended to be replacements for Alatar and Pallando, or whether they had a second set of names (for instance, their names used in Middle-earth).

Etymology

The name "Alatar" probably means "after-comer" (as he was one of the original two Maiar to be chosen to become Wizards and follow Sauron to Middle-earth). J.R.R. Tolkien specifically stated that neither Alatar nor Pallando had a name in the west of Middle-earth, unlike the other Wizards.

Later in his life, Tolkien wrote a note suggesting that the names of the Blue Wizards were Morinehtar and Rómestámo. It is not clear whether these names were intended to replace the names Alatar and Pallando, or whether Morinehtar and Rómestámo were alternate names for the Blue Wizards, possibly those given to them by the peoples of Middle-earth.[5]

The name "Morinehtar" means "darkness-slayer." The name "Rómestámo" means "East-helper," from the Quenya word romen, meaning uprising, sunrise, east.

Appearances

Books

Films

Games

Portrayal in adaptations

Blue Wizards azurite figurine

Peter Jackson's The Hobbit trilogy

In The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Gandalf is asked by Bilbo Baggins about the names of the blue wizards and replies "...I've quite forgotten their names." This is because the names "Alatar" and "Pallando" do not appear in The Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit books, and therefore the films did not have the rights to use them.

Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings trilogy

The Blue Wizards are never mentioned in The Lord of the Rings films, and are only referenced indirectly by Saruman, who mentions "the rods of the five wizards" in the extended edition of the third film.

Video games

In the game Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor, a Weathered Azurite Figurine can be found in the north-western part of the Sea of Núrnen. In the game their names are not said, but the description of the artifact implies the two wizards are Alatar and Pallando. In the memory of this artifact is said:

"See, there were two of them, and they both came in from the road with a hard look in their eyes, as if they'd traveled too far and seen too much. They were Wizards, true, both of 'em caked in dust, and when one's talk he'd stop to think and there'd be the other to finish right up, like they had one brain and two mouths. It was creepy for sure, but neither seemed to notice. I heard them say they were hunting the darkness. Darned if I know if they found it. But I guess those fellows can find trouble when they're looking for it."

Translations

Foreign language Translated name
Afrikaans Blou Towenaars
Albanian Magjistarët e Kaltër
Amharic ሰማያዊ አጋዦች
Arabic أزرق السحرة
Armenian կապույտ Վիզարդզ
Azerbaijani Mavi Sehrbazlar
Basque Azti Urdinak
Belarusian Cyrillic сінія чараўнікі
Bengali নীল জাদুকররা
Bosnian Plavi Čarobnjaci
Bulgarian Cyrillic Сините Магьосници
Cambodian អ្នកជំនួយការខៀវ
Catalan Mags Blaus
Chinese (Hong Kong) 藍色巫師
Cornish Pystrioryon Blou
Croatian Plavi Čarobnjaci
Czech Modří Čarodějové
Danish Blå Troldmænd
Dutch Blauwe Tovenaars
Esperanto Bluaj Magiistoj
Estonian Sinised Võlurid
Faroese Bláur gandakallur ?
Fijian Daucakamana ena Karakarawa
Filipino Bughaw na Manggagaway
Finnish Siniset Velhot
French Mages Bleus
Frisian Blau Tsjoender
Galician Magos Azuis
Georgian ლურჯი ჯადოსნები
German Blaue Zauberer
Greek Μπλε Μάγοι
Gujarati બ્લુ વિઝાર્ડઝ
Haitian Creole Sòsye Ble
Hawaiian Uliuli Kupua
Hebrew קוסמים הכחולים (Blue Wizards)

איתרין לואין (Ithryn Luin)

Hindi ब्लू विजार्ड्स
Hungarian Kék Varázsló
Icelandic Blár Galdramenn
Indonesian Penyihir Biru
Irish Gaelic Draoi Gorm
Italian Stregoni Blu
Japanese 青のウィザード
Kannada ನೀಲಿ ಮಾಂತ್ರಿಕರು
Kazakh Көк сиқыршылар (Cyrillic) Kök sïqırşılar (Latin)
Korean 청색의 마법사
Kurdish Sêrbazên Şîn (Kurmanji Kurdish)
Latin Caeruleus Veneficus
Latvian Zils Vedņi
Lithuanian Mėlynos Burtininkai
Luxembourgish Blo Zauberer
Macedonian Cyrillic сина Визардс
Malagasy Manga Mitsiatsiaka
Malaysian Pendeta Biru
Maltese Ikħal-sħaħar
Marathi निळा विझार्ड्स
Mongolian Cyrillic Цэнхэр ид шидтэнгүүд
Nederlands Blauwe Tovenare
Nepalese निलो जादूगर
Norwegian Blå Veivisere
Occitan Mascs Blau
Pashto زنگالي جادوگران
Persian جادوگران آبی (Blue Wizards)

ایترین لوین (Ithryn Luin)

Polish Błękitni Czarodzieje
Portuguese Magos Azuis
Punjabi ਨੀਲੇ ਜਾਦੂਗਰ
Romanian Vrăjitorii Albaștri
Russian Синие маги
Sanskrit नीलःमायाकार
Serbian Плави Чаробњаци (Cyrillic) Plavi Čarobnjaci (Latin)
Sindhi نيرو جادوگر
Sinhalese නිල් සූනියම්කරුවන්
Slovak Modrí čarodejníci
Slovenian Modri Čarovniki
Somalian Saaxiriinta Buluug
Spanish Magos Azules
Swahili Wachawi Bluu
Swedish Blå Trollkarlar
Tajik Cyrillic Кабуд ҷодугарон
Tamil நீலம் சூனியக்காரர்கள்
Telugu నీలము ఇంద్రజాలికులు
Thai บลูวิซาร์ด
Turkish Mavi Büyücüler
Ukrainian Cyrillic Сині чарівники
Urdu نیلا جادوگر
Uzbek Кўк Сеҳргарлар (Cyrillic) Ko'k Sehrgarlar (Latin)
Vietnamese Phù thủy Màu xanh
Welsh Dewiniaid Glas
Yiddish בלוי וויזאַרדס
Yucatec Maya Magos Azules

References

  1. The Silmarillion, Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age
  2. Unfinished Tales, Part Four, chapter II: "The Istari"
  3. Unfinished Tales, Part Four, chapter II: "The Istari"
  4. The Letters of J. R. R. Tolkien
  5. The History of Middle-earth, Vol. XII: The Peoples of Middle-earth, XIII: "Last Writings"