Runes on the map index

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Runes on the map index

Post by Wanton » Thu Nov 09, 2017 2:16 pm

This was a question I posted in the OGL board but no one knew, so I thought I would throw it out there for "The One Ring" experts? :ugeek:

This concerns the little white circles with black characters in them, representing Free, Border, Wild, Shadow, & Dark.

Are symbols that are used in the maps are in fact Tolkien created dwarven runes?
If not, what are they?
If so, why were these runes chosen?

As examples on one map the symbol that looks a little bit like pi, but has a longer left leg than right leg, can be found to be a dwarven rune that is either a U or a V, but this represents "Free Lands", is there something I'm missing on why this was chosen. I also find (see below) that it could be an "A".

I didn't find the "k" rune above in some of places I checked, but I did find it listed here:


But if you look on the legend of this map:


there are five symbols for the Lands, if I have to memorized them, so be it, but I would love to learn why these "runes" were chosen.

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Re: Runes on the map index

Post by Otaku-sempai » Thu Nov 09, 2017 3:33 pm

I just happen to have the LotR Appendices at hand, and I can answer 'yes', those are all runes from Tolkien's Angerthas Moria alphabet.

Image = a (Free Lands)
Image = k (Border Lands)
Image = n (Wild Lands)
Image = o (Shadow Lands)
Image = u (Dark Lands)

As to why those particular runes were selected? I don't know, though 'u' might represent Udûn (Utumno).
"Far, far below the deepest delvings of the Dwarves, the world is gnawed by nameless things. Even Sauron knows them not. They are older than he."

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Re: Runes on the map index

Post by HunterGreen » Fri Nov 10, 2017 1:39 pm

I wouldn't be surprised if some of the selection was simply to get runes that are very visually distinct, so you didn't end up trying to squint at the difference between Image and Image on a possibly crowded map.
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Re: Runes on the map index

Post by Wanton » Fri Nov 10, 2017 2:53 pm

Thank you both.

I have memorized the symbols by now just though use of maps while planning and working on adventures... I also see now that both the symbol and color area affect the peril rating. :ugeek:

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