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Valarauco pl. Valaraucar[1][2] is the Quenya name for the Maiarin followers of Morgoth better known in their Sindarin form: Balrogs.


It is formed from words vala ("power") and rauco ("monster").[3] Valarauco is not forming a regular plural **Valaraucor but changing the final vowel in the plural (-o > -ar). Helge Fauskanger suggests that the singular form uses the variant rauco, while the plural form uses the variant rauca for some reason.[4]

Other versions of the legendarium[edit]

In The Etymologies, the word Balrog is derived from ñgwalaraukô[3] displaying a derivation from root ñgwal- (referring to "torment, cruelty") instead of val-.[5] This derivation would produce the Quenya word **Nwalarauco.

In the Qenya Lexicon, the Qenya term is Malcarauce.[6][7]

See also[edit]

  • sundo — Another Quenya word which displays similar properties.


  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The War of the Jewels p.415
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, "From Quendi and Eldar, Appendix D" (edited by Carl F. Hostetter), in Vinyar Tengwar, Number 39, July 1998 p.10
  3. 3.0 3.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lost Road and Other Writings, Part Three: "The Etymologies", RUK
  4. Helge Fauskanger, "Quettaparma Quenyallo" dated 25 December 2008, Ardalambion (accessed 21 March 2023)
  5. Conrad Dunkerson, "The Truth About Balrogs - What is the etymology of 'balrog'?", Tolkien Meta-FAQ (accessed 21 March 2023)
  6. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Book of Lost Tales Part One, Appendix: Names in the Lost Tales – Part I, entry "Balrog", p. 250
  7. J.R.R. Tolkien, "Qenyaqetsa: The Qenya Phonology and Lexicon", in Parma Eldalamberon XII (edited by Carl F. Hostetter, Christopher Gilson, Arden R. Smith, and Patrick H. Wynne), p. 58