Tolkien Gateway


Turner Mohan - Bolg.jpg
"Bolg" by Turner Mohan
Biographical Information
Other names"Bolg of the North"[1]
LocationMount Gundabad
DeathT.A. 2941
Battle of the Five Armies
Physical Description
GalleryImages of Bolg

Bolg of the North was an Orc warlord.

[edit] History

Bolg was the son of Azog,[1] who succeeded his father as leader of the northern Orcs after Azog was killed by Dáin Ironfoot at the Battle of Azanulbizar in Third Age 2799.[2] This started Bolg's hatred towards the Dwarves and after the Great Goblin was killed during an encounter with Thorin and Company in T.A. 2941, his hatred for them grew even more.[source?]

Bolg gathered an army of Orcs from the Misty Mountains to their capital at Mount Gundabad. They marched eastward through the Grey Mountains with a host of Wargs and a cloud of bats overhead.[1]

Once they reached the Lonely Mountain, Bolg led the Orcs and Wargs into battle with the Dwarves, Wood-elves, and Lake-men. Surrounding him was a group of huge Orcs with steel scimitars.[1] When Thorin attempted to pierce their ranks he became surrounded, and would later die from the wounds he sustained. The Eagles arrived and after them came Beorn in the shape of a bear. Beorn killed Bolg and the Orcs and Wargs were soon defeated.[3]

[edit] Etymology

There have been several attempts to give a meaning of the name Bolg. One is a regular Orkish treatment of Boldog, another a connection to Westron bolg.

In The History of The Hobbit, a word from a little known and little expanded language, Mágol, is given, bolg, which means "strong". Tolkien at one time considered making Mágol an Orkish language. An Ivernian word "bolg", of unknown meaning, is also cited by Rateliff.[4]

[edit] Genealogy

d. T.A. 2799
d. T.A. 2941

[edit] Portrayal in adaptations

2012: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey:

Bolg is played by Conan Stevens in this film via practical costume.[5] He makes a brief appearance during the Battle of Azanulbizar, where he is seen fighting against Dwalin during the flashback to the battle outside Moria, until he is incapacitated and knocked down. He is, however, never actually identified as being Bolg in the film.[note 1]

2013: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug:

Bolg is played by Lawrence Makoare via motion capture in this film. Azog - who survives the War of the Dwarves and Orcs in these films - is summoned to Dol Guldur to become the commander of Sauron's Orc armies. While there, Azog dispatches his son Bolg to take his place in hunting Thorin and Company. With his pack of Orcs, Bolg tracks Thorin and Company through Mirkwood, attacks the Wood-elves as the Company escapes in barrels, and eventually follows the Dwarves to Lake-town.
At Lake-town, Bolg and his Orcs attack the peoples in search of the Dwarves, but find only four. When they attack, they are in turn attacked by two Elves: Legolas and Tauriel. He goes after Legolas, and the two begin a duel (in which the Elf uses Orcrist, the weapon of Thorin). While Legolas is distracted by other Orcs, Bolg withdraws and rides a Warg down a dock. He is then pursued by Legolas, now on a horse.

2014: The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies:

Once again performed via motion capture, Bolg is played by John Tui this time. He is first seen in this film when he meets his father who is leading Sauron's forces to capture Erebor. When he realises Elves will come to Erebor, Azog sends Bolg to lead a separate Orc army detachment raised in Gundabad. Arriving with an advance force, he aids his father against Thorin Oakenshield's commando team on Ravenhill, nearly kills the Elf Tauriel, and slays the Dwarf Kíli when he comes to her defense. Soon afterwards, however, he is confronted and killed by Legolas, who drives one of his battle-knives into his head. Bolg's body subsequently falls of the mountain and is crushed by a boulder falling on top of it.

[edit] See also


  1. While Bolg was redesigned for motion capture performance and recast for the two following films, Conan Stevens does reprise this character as the Orc dungeon keeper at Dol Guldur in The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies who torments Gandalf as he is imprisoned there. The Orc also attempts to reclaim Narya from the Wizard for his master right before being vanquished by Galadriel upon her arrival, though this segment only occurs in the film's Extended Edition


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, "The Clouds Burst"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, "Durin's Folk"
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, "The Return Journey"
  4. J.R.R. Tolkien, John D. Rateliff (ed.), The History of The Hobbit, Return to Bag End, p. 710
  5. MrCere, "Exclusive: ‘Hobbit’s’ Conan Stevens chats with TORn" dated 22 April 2012, (accessed 5 September 2012)