|Languages||presumably numerous; different from Common Speech|
|Average height||shorter than Númenóreans|
|Distinctions||Alliance with Sauron|
|Lifespan||shorter than Númenórean|
The Variags were a little-known people who dwelt in the land of Khand.
Khand was southeast of Mordor at the time of the War of the Ring. The Variags were allied to Sauron or under the influence of Mordor and supplied it with horses, and twice came into the history of Gondor: first in T.A. 1944 when the Variags together with the Wainriders attacked Gondor, and later during the War of the Ring when they fought at the Battle of the Pelennor Fields. They were held in reserve in Osgiliath and were sent onto the battlefield by Gothmog after the death of the Witch-king. They were described as tall and ferocious warriors, wielding large battle-axes in combat and descending on their foes with great wrath.
It has been suggested that Tolkien adopted the Slavic term to indicate that the Variags were possibly mercenaries serving a possible Lord of Khand.
Portrayal in adaptations
1982-97: Middle-earth Role Playing:
1995-8: Middle-earth Collectible Card Game:
- Variags of Khand is a Man Faction.
- ↑ J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), Unfinished Tales, "The West of Middle-earth at the End of the Third Age" [map]
- ↑ J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix A, "The Númenorean Kings", "Gondor and the Heirs of Anárion"
- ↑ J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Battle of the Pelennor Fields"
- ↑ J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Peoples of Middle-earth, The Appendix on Languages
- ↑ Jim Allan (1978), An Introduction to Elvish, Obscure Languages
- ↑ S. Coleman Charlton (1993), Middle-earth Role Playing (2nd edition, hardcover) (#2000)
- ↑ Peter C. Fenlon, Jr. et al. (1987), Lords of Middle-earth Vol II: The Mannish Races (#8003)