Tribe Names

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Tribe Names

Post  Trinda on Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:41 am

This is a theory (and also a question) that I came up with and tried to discuss it on the US forums years back. It was pretty much swatted away as mindless babbling (a few people did like it, but they were all in my guild and thus quite biased), but I figure you guys might be able to discuss/appreciate it a bit more.

Many jungle Troll tribes have names that seem to make sense.
Bloodscalps have red hair. Skullsplitters split skulls. Hakkari and Atal'ai follow Hakkar (Atal'ai in Dark Factions is claimed to mean Devoted Ones). Darkspear probably has to do with using dark stones to make spears or darkening their spears with the enemy's blood or something. I don't know for certain, but you could make a theory almost immediately from the name.

Sandfury, Frostmane, Winterax and Shadowtooth of other sub-races also are easily explainable in that way.
The names like Gurubashi, Amani and Drakkari likely meant something meaningful in Zandali. I never really pursued those ones too hard, as that would be a bit too much speculation even for myself.

The forest Troll tribe names at first glance seemed (to me) to be pulled out of nowhere. Mossflayer. Vilebranch. Smolderthorn. Witherbark. Firetree. The only connecting factors seem to be that their names contain some sort of violent/poisonous adjective/verb and some aspect of plant-life. Then something struck me from when I used to play WCII. The Troll Lumber Mill. Those were forest Trolls in WCII... So I hunted down my manual and looked it up to see if maybe I would find the answer.
The trolls, having lived in the forests of the far north for centuries, have devised a unique method of harvesting. By treating a group of trees with a volatile alchemical solvent, the trolls can deaden and weaken large sections of wood. Though it is extremely hazardous to peon and earth alike, this site makes the process of cutting lumber more efficient.
There was the etymology of the forest Troll tribe names staring at me from the page!
Does this not seem to be a more than plausible origin of the names?

As a related aside, after talking about Trolls at length last year, a friend of mine went a little Troll crazy and even tried adding it as speculation on Wowwiki last year and was shot down because the moderator felt it was "pure speculation with no base". Considering she gave the source and the exact quote, I don't buy it. There's worse unfounded speculation out there. Ah well. Win some, lose some.

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Anyway, the discussion questions are:

Do you have any personal theories on certain tribe names?
If you have ever invented your own tribe, what was the etymology of the name?
And this question could likely have a whole thread to itself, but what are your theories on tribal/sub-race relations?
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Re: Tribe Names

Post  Vypra on Wed Feb 03, 2010 1:43 am

It's an interesting theory and i'd agree it's one that seems to have at least some basis.

I'll leave commenting further for now though until i've had chance to think it through Wink

As far as player created tribes go: SSL has at least two that i know of. The second in command of the Ashen Order is the last member of the Winterspyte tribe of ice trolls. Given her description mentions that she has 5 finger and toes, i've always assumed this was a nod to the speculation about the link between trolls and elves Smile

There's also our new Primal Ser'tah who is the current witch of the Warpwood, an offshoot of the dark trolls who settled in feralas (i think... ).

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