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Balrog versus Sauron
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ESB -1138
Piano Man

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Location: Jacksonville, Florida

He is half right. The Balrogs were originally Maiar, of the same order as Sauron, Saruman and Gandalf, but they became seduced by Morgoth, who corrupted them to his service in the days of his splendour before the creation of Arda. During the First Age, they were among the most feared of Morgoth's forces. When his fortress of Utumno was destroyed by the Valar, they fled and lurked in the pits of Angband. He did make them into what they are known as today but he didn't make them.


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Old Post Jul 28th, 2006 08:43 PM
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Grand-Moff-Gav
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But, that being said, Gandalf the Grey was able to kill the Balrog, but, Gandalf the White wasn't able to beat the Witch King, who was created by Sauron with a weaker ring...therefore, Sauron would be able to defeat the balrog.

Old Post Jul 29th, 2006 07:46 PM
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Rogal Dorn
Mahal

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Gandalf and The Witch King of Angmar never actually fought, their battle was interrupted. However, Gandalf as Gandalf The Grey did hold off ALL nine of the Nazgul for the whole of the night upon Weathertop. He was able to hold his own 1 Vs 9 including the Witch King and he only fled in order to try and hasten to Rivendel and get aid to Frodo. At the battle of Plennor the Witch King was enhanced by Sauron but Gandalf was by this point The White.

If Gandalf The Grey could hold off all nine Nazgul would the enhancement placed on the Witch King really be enough to outmatch all the Nines strength PLUS the additional strength granted to him by his "promotion" to The White? Sauron admittedly would be able to defeat the Balrog but to get to that conclusion by using Gandalf as a comparison may be inaccurate.


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Old Post Jul 29th, 2006 07:53 PM
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Rogal Dorn
Mahal

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Sorry for Double post the edit limit expired after I found this quote,

'I do not know, but it seems clear to me that this is what happened. Their Captain remained in secret away south of Bree, while two rode ahead through the village, and four more invaded the Shire. But when these were foiled in Bree and at Crickhollow, they returned to their Captain with tidings, and so left the Road unguarded for a while, except by their spies. The Captain then sent some eastward straight across country, and he himself with the rest rode along the Road in great wrath.
'I galloped to Weathertop like a gale, and I reached it before sundown on my second day from Bree-and they were there before me. They drew away from me, for they felt the coming of my anger and they dared not face it while the Sun was in the sky. But they closed round at night, and I was besieged on the hill-top, in the old ring of Amon Sūl. I was hard put to it indeed: such light and flame cannot have been seen on Weathertop since the war-beacons of old.
`At sunrise I escaped and fled towards the north. I could not hope to do more. It was impossible to find you, Frodo, in the wilderness, and it would have been folly to try with all the Nine at my heels. So I had to trust to Aragorn. But I hoped to draw some of them off, and yet reach Rivendell ahead of you and send out help. Four Riders did indeed follow me, but they turned back after a while and made for the Ford, it seems. That helped a little, for there were only five, not nine, when your camp was attacked.
(TFotR (II) The Council of Elrond)


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Yet the making of things is in my heart from my own making by thee; and the child of little understanding that makes a play of the deeds of his father may do so without without thought of mockery, but because he is the son of his father.

Old Post Jul 29th, 2006 08:18 PM
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Bardock42
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I'd go for Sauron, yeah...he seems more powerful than Gandalf....


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Old Post Jul 30th, 2006 09:45 AM
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ESB -1138
Piano Man

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Location: Jacksonville, Florida

Gandalf and The Witch King of Angmar never actually fought, their battle was interrupted. However, Gandalf as Gandalf The Grey did hold off ALL nine of the Nazgul for the whole of the night upon Weathertop. He was able to hold his own 1 Vs 9 including the Witch King and he only fled in order to try and hasten to Rivendel and get aid to Frodo. At the battle of Plennor the Witch King was enhanced by Sauron but Gandalf was by this point The White.

Gandalf the White said himself that the Witch-King was his equal or greater.

If Gandalf The Grey could hold off all nine Nazgul would the enhancement placed on the Witch King really be enough to outmatch all the Nines strength PLUS the additional strength granted to him by his "promotion" to The White? Sauron admittedly would be able to defeat the Balrog but to get to that conclusion by using Gandalf as a comparison may be inaccurate.

Gandalf said he did not defeat the Nine only drive them back and then he fled. Four went after and five did not. Nothing can stand against the Nine. And once more Gandalf the White himself said before the throne of Gondor that the Witch-King is his equal or greater and that he fears him.

'I galloped to Weathertop like a gale, and I reached it before sundown on my second day from Bree-and they were there before me. They drew away from me, for they felt the coming of my anger and they dared not face it while the Sun was in the sky. But they closed round at night, and I was besieged on the hill-top, in the old ring of Amon Sūl. I was hard put to it indeed: such light and flame cannot have been seen on Weathertop since the war-beacons of old.
`At sunrise I escaped and fled towards the north. I could not hope to do more. It was impossible to find you, Frodo, in the wilderness, and it would have been folly to try with all the Nine at my heels. So I had to trust to Aragorn. But I hoped to draw some of them off, and yet reach Rivendell ahead of you and send out help. Four Riders did indeed follow me, but they turned back after a while and made for the Ford, it seems. That helped a little, for there were only five, not nine, when your camp was attacked.
(TFotR (II) The Council of Elrond)


Sounds like Gandalf could only handle the Nine during the day and it was said that the Nine could not see in the light. Blindness gives Gandalf a nice edge. But when night came Gandalf had to try to defend himself and when the sun rose who managed to escape knowing that the Nine would have killed him.


Proof:
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
Chapter IV: The Siege of Gondor Pg. 800-801 (One volume edition)
'Is Faramir come?' he asked.
'No,' said Gandalf. 'But he still lived when I left him. Yet he is resolved to stay with the reargurad, lest the retreat over the Pelennor become a rout. He may, perhaps, hold his men together long enough, but I doubt it. He is pitted against a foe too great. For one has come that I feared.'
'Not - the Dark Lord?' cried Pippin, forgetting his place in his terror.
Denethor laughed bitterly. 'Nay, not yet, Master Peregrin! He will not come save only to triumph over me when all is won. He uses others as his weapons. So do all great lords, if they are wise, Master Halfling. Or why should I sit here in my tower and think, and watch, and wair, spending even my sons? For I can still wield a brand.'
He stood up and cast opened his long black cloak, and behold! he was clad in mail beneath, and grit with a long sword, great-hilted in a sheath of black and silver. 'Thus have I walked, and thus now for many years have I slept,' he said, 'lest we age the body should grow soft and timid.'
'Yet now under the Lord of Barad-dur the most fell of all his captains is already master of your outer walls' said Gandalf. 'King of Angmar long ago, Sorcerer, Ringwraith, Lord of the Nazgul, a spear of terror in the hand of Sauron, shadow of despair.'
'Then, Mithrandir, you had a foe to match you,' Said Denethor. 'For myself, I have long known who is chief captain of the hosts of the Dark Tower. Is this all that you have returned to say? Or cab it be that you have withdrawn because you are overmatched?'
Pippin trembled, fearing that Gandalf would be stung to sudden wrath, but his fear was needless. 'It might be so,' Gandalf answered softly.


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Last edited by ESB -1138 on Jul 30th, 2006 at 12:13 PM

Old Post Jul 30th, 2006 12:07 PM
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Rogal Dorn
Mahal

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Location: Birmingham, United Kingdom

The way I read that line about Gandalf stating "It might be so" isn't definite Gandalf never actually says "Yes he would beat me". A lot of it is up for interpretation and I know of many who see it as Gandalf is the equal to the Nine. The fact he states that it would be folly to search for anyone whilst the Nine persued him is true it is obvious it took all his energy to just defend himself never mind search, move and defend himself. Four followed him when he fled and the other five stayed meaning that only five attacked Frodo's camp not the whole host of Nine.

His hope to reach Rivendel and aid as well has to be a factor in his fleeing, the fact that he lasted the night against them suggests to me more that the Witch King would be his equal, rather than his Superior. And I believe Gandalf stated that the Black was greater than himself, the Black to many can mean Gandalfs polar opposite aka Sauron or Sauron and the whole of Saurons armies. Which is true, Sauron is mightier than Gandalf.

My quotes

"Like thunder they broke upon the enemy on either flank of the retreat; but one rider outran them all, swift as the wind in the grass: Shadowfax bore him, shining, unveiled once more, a light starting from his upraised hand.
The Nazgūl screeched and swept away, for their Captain was not yet come to challenge the white fire of his foe.
(TRotK (II) The Siege of Gondor)"

This implies that either the Nazgul dared not face Gandalf without the Witch King either because a) they could not defeat him b) it was not their role to attempt to.

In retrospect I think this is a point that will always cause argument between the two "camps" and will never truly be resolved each side quoting an re quoting. I was simply meaning to address in the first place that a comparison of power by using Gandalf as a grading stick may be unwise. However ESB I do hold your opinions and learning highly so it is something I shall consider when it comes to ever addressing this issue again.


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Yet the making of things is in my heart from my own making by thee; and the child of little understanding that makes a play of the deeds of his father may do so without without thought of mockery, but because he is the son of his father.

Old Post Jul 30th, 2006 06:45 PM
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ESB -1138
Piano Man

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That or it means that out of the Nine only their captain can defeat Gandalf. Because if that was true then why did the Witch-King ride into Minas Tirith alone to face Gandalf instead of with the others? That proves that Gandalf is greater then the lesser eight but against the Witch-King is another story.

And you did say that Gandalf only defended himself and tried to get to escape. If Gandalf was truly equal to the Nine then he would have tried to go on the attack but instead he tried to flee.

'No,' said Gandalf. 'But he still lived when I left him. Yet he is resolved to stay with the reargurad, lest the retreat over the Pelennor become a rout. He may, perhaps, hold his men together long enough, but I doubt it. He is pitted against a foe too great. For one has come that I feared.'

For one has come that I feared; that means Gandalf fears the captain alone for he said one.


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Old Post Jul 30th, 2006 08:01 PM
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Rogal Dorn
Mahal

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Location: Birmingham, United Kingdom

Or he feared that he would come and thus make it harder for the host of men rather than he feared him personally. If something happens in life and I go "I feared this would happen" it doesn't mean I was shaking in a corner having cold sweats. He tried to flee to draw them away and to head to Rivendel to get help sent out, and for some point he did draw them away. Gandalf defended himself against the nine for some 12 hours by the time of year from sundown to sunrise if in the space of the said period of time they could not cast down Gandalf then I would think he is mightier than them at least in this case. He is also very wise, those who are truly wise know when to attack and when not to, I believe Gandalf percieved it would be best to try and draw them away rather that risk Frodo's and the rings arrival with his battle not yet won. For Aragorn and The Hobbits to arrive with Gandalf mid battle would only make it harder for him to fight seeing as their protection from the Nine would be paramount.

The Witch King rode to Minas Tirith alone to face Gandalf because out of all the Nine he had a chance against him they were most likely equals with Gandalf having slightly more inherent power but some constraints may be laid upon him. Also the Nazgul were instrumental in subduing the rest of the resistance to bring all of them to bear against Gandalf would be a vast misallocation of resources the Witch King would be smarter in combat than to risk that the other Eight probably also feared Gandalf after he became The White, wheras the Witch King did not.


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Yet the making of things is in my heart from my own making by thee; and the child of little understanding that makes a play of the deeds of his father may do so without without thought of mockery, but because he is the son of his father.

Last edited by Rogal Dorn on Jul 30th, 2006 at 08:13 PM

Old Post Jul 30th, 2006 08:10 PM
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ESB -1138
Piano Man

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Location: Jacksonville, Florida

Actaully there is a difference between the Black Captain when he attacked Gandalf with the eight and when he confronted him at Minas Tirith. The Witch-King was infused by Sauron with added demonic force. The Black Captain wasn't at the same strength as before but now was superior.

Gandalf the Grey was lesser then the Nine and Gandalf the White may have come closer to equalling the Nine but at this point the Witch-King was given strength by the Dark Lord of Mordor who was superior then Gandalf the White.


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as much as I love to psychically explore the cosmos and think of myself as a baby hippopotamus

Old Post Jul 30th, 2006 09:19 PM
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Rogal Dorn
Mahal

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Location: Birmingham, United Kingdom

I am aware that the Witch King was enhanced by Sauron. In fact I quoted it myself. I would not say that Gandalf the Grey was lesser than the nine, neither defeated the other but that is a personal opinion and we can battle them all day long and I have a feeling neither side would back down. As such the discussion on this would have no end I fear. Rather to agree to disagree on this point.


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Yet the making of things is in my heart from my own making by thee; and the child of little understanding that makes a play of the deeds of his father may do so without without thought of mockery, but because he is the son of his father.

Old Post Jul 30th, 2006 10:21 PM
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ESB -1138
Piano Man

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Just to be fair; the Nine battled Gandalf for some hours but how the battle happened is unknown. It took a few days for Gandalf to slay the Balrog. That alone shows that Gandalf can endure a lot and that he wouldn't have been able to defeat the Nine either because he would have grown tired (in the Mines of Moria it was shown that Gandalf could in fact become very tired) and thus fell or he would have to flee like he did.


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as much as I love to psychically explore the cosmos and think of myself as a baby hippopotamus

Old Post Jul 31st, 2006 01:46 AM
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Rogal Dorn
Mahal

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Location: Birmingham, United Kingdom

Not to continue this unduly, but I have found a few more quotes which I think are relevant and I would like to share them.

Letter 210 points out:

[The Black Riders] peril is almost entirely due to the unreasoning fear which they inspire (like ghosts). They have no great physical power against the fearless...

With that being said I would like to reference you to Pg 141 of my version of the book "Chapter VII, The Pyre of Denethor"

"When the dark shadow at the Gate withdrew Gandalf still sat motionless . But Pippin rose to his feet, as if a great weight had been lifted from him; and he stood listening to the horns, and it seemed to him that they would break his heart with joy. And never in after years could he hear a horn blown in the distance without tears starting in his eyes. But now suddenly his errand returned to his memory, and he ran forward. At that moment Gandalf stirred and spoke to Shadowfax, and was about to ride through the Gate ."
(Emphasis Mine)

This to me shows that Gandalf was about to give chase on The Witch King and that he wasn't afraid, more so confident unflinching in the "face" or his enemy.

"Gandalf looked through the gaping Gate, and already on the fields he heard the gathering sound of battle. He clenched his hand . 'I must go,' he said. 'The Black Rider is abroad, and he will yet bring ruin on us. I have no time .'"
(Emphasis Mine)

Gandalf seems anxious to chase down and face the Black Rider to stand up to him. His clenched hand again shows a lack of fear and determination.

"'Can't you save Faramir?' 'Maybe I can,' said Gandalf; 'but if I do, the others will die , I fear. Well, I must come, since no other help can reach him. But evil and sorrow will come of this . Even in the heart of our stronghold the Enemy has power to strike us: for his will is that is at work'"
(Emphasis Mine)

Again this seems to imply that Gandalf believes if he was to stand against the Black Rider he could prevent many deaths and sorrow that will occur because he doesn't stand against him.

"Now he dismounted and bade Shadowfax return to his stable. 'For, my friend,' he said, 'you and I should have ridden to the fields long ago , but other matters delay me. Yet come swiftly if I call !'
(Emphasis Mine)

This shows Gandalf's willingness to ride out and face his enemy and whilst other matters delay him he bids Shadowfax to come quickly if he calls, presumably so he may give chase on the Black Rider.

I think maybe there is a vast difference not only between the power of Gandalf the Grey and Gandalf the White but also with their attitudes and their "fear". Still some interesting lines and ones which never fail to draw me more and more into the story.


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Yet the making of things is in my heart from my own making by thee; and the child of little understanding that makes a play of the deeds of his father may do so without without thought of mockery, but because he is the son of his father.

Old Post Jul 31st, 2006 07:10 PM
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ESB -1138
Piano Man

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Gandalf still sat motionless

Seems like Gandalf wasn't to eager to go after the black captain.

The Black Rider is abroad, and he will yet bring ruin on us. I have no time

Sounds more like Gandalf wanted to save others from the black captain and was willing to put his life on the line; like with the Balrog at Moria. Gandalf knows why he is at Middle-Earth; to help men defeat Sauron. He knew that if anyone had the best chance to stand against the black rider it would be him. Why would Gandalf allow others to be slain if he is capable of trying to prevent that?

(Can't find my ROTK book but) after the passage I posted Gandalf and Denethor continue to speak and Gandalf goes on to say that his strength will be tested and that he knows the black captain is his equal or perhaps even greater.

Once I find the book I will give you the direct passage.


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Old Post Jul 31st, 2006 07:35 PM
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Incanus
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actually, gandalf and all the istari were maia, as has been stated. BUT Olorin (Gandalf) stated in Unfinished Tales "And Manwe said 'Where is Olorin?' and Olorin had just arrived at the end of a long journey, dressed in grey, and Manwe said unto him 'I wish to send Olorin as the third emissary' and Varda replied 'Not the third' and Curumo was angered. But Olorin replied that he was to weak for the task, and that he feared Sauron. And Manwe said it was all the more reason to go." Later it says that by taking the form of the flesh of Arda, their powers would be limited, and that the West would be but a distant vision, only to be allowed to return if they stayed true to their task. Only Olorin stayed true, Curumo fell to evil, Radagast becam enamoured of the birds and beasts and stayed with them, and the "Blue Wizards" went into the east, being sent by the Valar that most likely knew the most about thosse lands. But Olorin was actually LIMITED in his strength when he fought the balrog,so, since he killed it, he was far more powerful than it in actuality, because as the White, he was still far limited in his powers, so the Black Captain could not stand against him at the height of his power, as the Witch King is not the equal of even the Moria balrog. The Nine would fall before him, and even Sauron at full strength would have a good fight on his hands. Gothmog would most likely be slain, saying that it would be a very close fight.In my opinion, Gothmog would fall to Sauron, as Sauron was equal to all the balrogs, only Gothmog himself stood a fraction of a chance, as serving Morgoth, even Sauron was limited, while Morgoth was not. And P.S. Sauron lost the ability to shape shift in the Sinking Of Numenor, as the 14th or 15th king of Numenor marched on Mordor, and Sauron, seeing as how he would not be able to defeat the Numenoreans, hid the One, and surrendered, and was brought to Numenor, only deepining his hatred for them seeing the splendor of their cities. During the time of the 13th king of Numenor, he was recognized by Gil-Galad High King of the Noldor as a servant of Morgoth, whom Gil-Galad had fought against in the War of Wrath if i am correct,and eventually, he worked his way into the deepest of the kings councils, becoming his cheif adviser, and having a temple to Melkor, Lord of Darkness built, and burned people upon its altar, saying Melkor the Mighty would give them immortality as of that of the Eldar. When Ar-Pharazon the last king of Numenor attack Aman and Numenor sank, Sauron perished, but his spirit lived, and fled to utumno most likely, which was nort of the Eastland of Harad. So Sauron practically foresaw that he would have 9 mighty servants, (3 of which were of royal and partisian Numenorean blood) the With King(royal, related to Elendil the Tall and his father Amandil) Morgomir(possibly name suggests it) and another unnamed one. And the Kings Men, (black numenoreans) eventually became his servants once again, in the time of Angmar. Only the Faithful,(still worshipping Eru not Melkor) beacame his worst enemies, as they knew he was a servant of Melkor the Morgoth Bauglir. And in so saying, Sauron was actually far greater than most if not all the Balrogs. can some1 plz reference this to the Akallabeth and Unfinished Tales to verify and correct ne mistakes i made

Old Post Jun 22nd, 2009 07:07 AM
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Allankles
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I don't see how you can infer the Sauron was greater in combat than all the balrogs from that. He was an illusionist, shape shifter and alchemist and he was defeated by Huan one on one (although somewhat weakened), and felled by Isildur.

He was the greatest servant of Morgoth but I doubt he would have survived against two Balrogs and Gothmog given his military prowess would have a good shot at beating him 1-on-1.

Also it should be noted that according to Tolkien the Balrogs were Morgoth's most fearsome servants in battle and they were few of them. No Balrog served Sauron seeing as they were both Maiar.

Sauron was also drowned at sea and survived most probably because of the one ring.


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Old Post Jun 22nd, 2009 07:31 PM
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Zampanó
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quote:
No Balrog served Sauron seeing as they were both Maiar.


The hierarchy might disagree; Sauron was Morgoth's Lieutenant, implying that he might be able to pull rank.


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Old Post Jun 22nd, 2009 09:04 PM
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Hewhoknowsall
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I thought that it was common knowledge that Sauron > a Balrog...


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Old Post Jun 23rd, 2009 12:53 AM
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Allankles
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quote: (post)
Originally posted by Red Nemesis
The hierarchy might disagree; Sauron was Morgoth's Lieutenant, implying that he might be able to pull rank.


Theoretically yes. But I'm speaking from the Balrog's perspective. After Morgoth's defeat the Balrog's that survived never cared to ally with Sauron.

And yes Hew, Sauron is most probably greater in combat than a single Balrog, but two Balrogs would be a bit much for Sauron to overcome. And Gothmog was likely a better fighter as well.


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Old Post Jun 23rd, 2009 04:01 AM
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Incanus
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but you are forgetting that it was Huans destiny to not be slain until he met the greatest wolf to ever live, which as Charcharoth, who was fed by Morgoth himself, and Isildur was a decendent of Beren and Luthien, who faced Morgoth himself and took a Silmaril AND killed Charcharoth, and in actuality, Isildur was part Maiar as well, as Luthien was the daughter of Melian the Maia, e was part Eldar, from King Thingol, and part Man, from Beren. And yes, the One is the reason Sauron lived, but uu r forgetting that during the War of the Jewels, Sauon never entered combat because of his rank, the same as Morgoth never did, they knew they would be the sole focus of attack, and most likely perish. Oh and i just remebered the "Blue Wizards" were sent by Orome the Hunter.

Last edited by Incanus on Jun 23rd, 2009 at 04:37 AM

Old Post Jun 23rd, 2009 04:31 AM
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