The Mouth of Sauron

“And thereupon the door of the Black Gate was thrown open with a great clang,
and out of it there came an embassy from the Dark Tower.”


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Little is known about the one who came forth before the assembled Captains of the West, as they stood at the very feet of the Black Gate of Mordor. A delegation from the Dark Tower came out from the great iron gate of the Morannon. Among them was one who was called the Mouth of Sauron, the Lieutenant of the Tower of Barad-dûr. He was a man, born of the Black Númenóreans, who had risen up among the ranks in power and sorcery, ever a pupil of dark knowledge, he grew strong in the favor of his Master, the Dark Lord of Mordor.

He understood much of the mind of Sauron and was granted a prestigious gift of power and influence, becoming the emissary of the Dark Tower. He was cruel and deadly.  In the Library of Shadow their is mention of the Lieutenant of the Dark Tower and that at one time he was named Mordu, which translates in the Black Speech as meaning Black Darkness or Black Night. It is not clear if this was the same, as the one who came forth prior to the Battle at the Black Gate, but being of Númenórean blood, he would likely have been equal in power and longevity as those of the Dúnedain.TolkienLegend3

The fate of the Mouth of Sauron, like almost all knowledge about him is in doubt. Some believe he fled back into Mordor, after being threatened with death by the Captains of the West, while others believe he fell at the stroke of Aragorn’s sword. Either way he likely perished, when the Black Gate and the walls of Udûn fell into ruin after the Ring went into the fire.

MouthSauron1When the Captains of the West came before the Black Gate and called upon the Lord of the Black Land, they were greeted with his terrible visage.

They came within cry of the Morannon, and unfurled the banner, and blew upon their trumpets: and the heralds stood out and sent their voices up over the battlement of Mordor.
There was a long silence, and from wall and gate no cry or sound was hear in answer. But Sauron had already laid his plans, and he had a mind to play these mice cruelly before he struck to kill. So it was that, even as the Captains were about to turn away, the silence was broken suddenly. There came a long rolling of great drums like thunder in the mountains, and then a braying of horns that shook the very stones and stunned men’s ears. An there upon door of the Black Gate was thrown open with a great clang, and out of it there came an embassy from the Dark Tower.
At its head there rode a tall and evil shape, mounted upon a black horse, if horse it was; for it was huge and hideous, and its face was a frightful mask, more like a skull then a living head, and in the sockets of the its eyes and in its nostrils there burned a flame. The rider was robed all in black, and black was his lofty helm; yet this was no Ringwraith but a living man. The Lieutenant of the Tower of Barad-dûr he was, and his name is remembered in no tale; for he himself had forgotten it, and he said:
“I am the Mouth of Sauron”

From The Lord of the Ring: The Return of the King from the chapter  ‘The Black Gate Opens’


MouthSauron2The origins of this dark man of the East are as vague as the Shadow that surrounds him..

It is told that he was a renegade, who came out of the race of those that are named the Black Númenóreans; for they established their dwellings in Middle-earth during the years of Sauron’s domination, and they worshiped him, being enamored of evil knowledge. And he entered the service of the Dark Tower when it first rose again, and because of his cunning he grew ever higher in the Lord’s favour; and he learned great sorcery, and knew much of the mind of Sauron; and he was more cruel than any orc.
He is was that now rode out; and with him came only a small company of black-harnessed soldiery, and a single banner, black but bearing on it in red the Evil Eye. Now halting a few paces before the Captains of the West he looked them up and down and laughed.’Is there anyone in this rout with authority to treat with me?’He asked. ‘Or indeed with wit to understand me? Not thou at least!’ he mocked, turning to Aragorn with scorn. ‘It needs more to make a king then a peice of elvish glass, or a rabble such as this. Why, any brigand of the hills can show as good a following!’

From The Lord of the Ring: The Return of the King from the chapter  ‘The Black Gate Opens’


The Mouth of Sauron brings tokens of one the company holds dear…

‘So! said the Messenger. ‘Thou art the spokesman, old greybeard? Have we not heard of thee at whiles, and of thy wanderings, ever hatching plots and mischief at a safe distance? But this time thou hast stuck out thy nose too far, Master Gandalf; thou shalt see what comes to him who sets his foolish webs before the feet of Sauron the Great. I have tokens that I was bidden to show thee – to see in especial, if thou should dare to come.’ He signed to one of his guards, and he came forward bearing a bundle swathed in black cloths.
MouthSauron3The Messenger put the aside, and there to the wonder and dismay if all the Captains he held up first the short sword that Sam had carried, and next a grey cloak with and eleven-broach, and last the coat of Mithril-mail that Frodo had worn wrapped in his tattered garments. A blackness came before their eyes, and it seemed to them in a moment of silence that the world stood still, but their hearts were dead and their last hope gone. Pippin, who stood behind Prince Imrahil sprang forward with a cry of grief.
‘Silence!’ said Gandalf sternly, thrusting him back; but the Messenger laughed aloud.
‘So you have yet another of these imps with you.!’ he cried. ‘What use you find in them I cannot guess; but to send them as spies into Mordor is beyond even you accustomed folly. Still, I thank him, for it is plain the the brat at least has seen these tokens before, and it would be vain for you to deny them now.’
‘I do not wish to deny them,’ said Gandalf. ‘Indeed, I know them all and their history, and despite your scorn, foul Mouth of Sauron, you cannot say as much. But why do you bring them here?’
‘Dwarf-coat, elf-cloak, blade of the the downfallen West, and spy from the little rat-land of the Shire ~ nay, do not start.  We know it well – here are the marks of a conspiracy. Now maybe he that bore these things was a creature that you would grieve to lose, and maybe otherwise; one dear to you perhaps? If so , take swift counsel, with what little wit is left to you. For Sauron does not love spies, and what his fate shall be depends now on your choice.’
No one answered him. be he saw their faces grey with fear and horror in their eyes, and he laughed again, for for it seemed to him that his sport went well.’Good, good!’ he said. ‘He was dear to you, I see. Or else his errand was one that you did not wish to fail? It has. And now he shall endure the slow torment of years, as long and slow as our arts in the Great Tower contrive, and never to be released, unless maybe when he is changed and broken, so that he may come to you, and you shall see what you have done. This will surely be – unless you accept my Lords terms.’

From The Lord of the Ring: The Return of the King from the chapter  ‘The Black Gate Opens’


‘Then the Messenger of Mordor laughed no more.  Rage filled him and his mouth slavered,
and shapeless sounds of fury cam strangling from his throat.’


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