How many Jormag are there? — Guild Wars 2 Forums
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How many Jormag are there?

I just finished the latest episode of the Living World (Icebrood Saga) and the characters talk about Jormag and keep mentioning that theyare preparing for something...
So I was wondering if perhaps I missed some information somewhere or if this is new information in general.
Does anyone know?
How many of Jormag are there?

Comments

  • Blocki.4931Blocki.4931 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 15, 2020

    They is just referring to them as gender neutral beings.
    So only one.

    I rather choose death.

  • Okay? But how many?

  • There is only one Jormag. It's not being used as a plural, it's being used as a gender neutral marker.

  • Greattyphoon.3120Greattyphoon.3120 Member ✭✭
    edited September 15, 2020

    So just one? Why use 'they' if there is only one? (sorry, not native English speaker here)

  • Ashantara.8731Ashantara.8731 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 15, 2020

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:
    So just one? Why use 'they' if there is only one? (sorry, not native English speaker here)

    As was already explained twice, "they" is also the gender neutral pronoun for third person singular, it is used instead of "he/she" to signal the gender of the subject is unknown to the speaker.

    Example:
    "Did you read what that guy just wrote in map chat??"
    "Why are you assuming gender? It could be a woman, you don't know that."
    "Okay. So, did you read what they just wrote?"

  • Atomos.7593Atomos.7593 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:
    So just one? Why use 'they' if there is only one? (sorry, not native English speaker here)

    Yes, there is just one Jormag. They is often used in English to refer to people without distinguishing between genders (for example when you don't know what gender the person you are referring to may be). So as an example, I would say over the internet about someone who's gender I don't know, they like GW2, instead of he/she likes GW2.

  • @Atomos.7593 said:

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:
    So just one? Why use 'they' if there is only one? (sorry, not native English speaker here)

    Yes, there is just one Jormag. They is often used in English to refer to people without distinguishing between genders (for example when you don't know what gender the person you are referring to may be). So as an example, I would say over the internet about someone who's gender I don't know, they like GW2, instead of he/she likes GW2.

    Ah okay I think I might understand. When I learned English, I was told "they" is always plural, and neutral singular was "it". But thank you for the explanation. Why not use "it" since Jormag is a dragon is also confusing to me. But thank you.

  • @Ashantara.8731 said:

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:
    So just one? Why use 'they' if there is only one? (sorry, not native English speaker here)

    As was already explained twice, "they" is also the gender neutral pronoun for third person singular, it is used instead of "he/she" to signal the gender of the subject is unknown to the speaker.

    Example:
    "Did you read what that guy just wrote in map chat??"
    "Why are you assuming gender? It could be a woman, you don't know that."
    "Okay. So, did you read what they just wrote?"

    Try to speak 4 languages, maybe you will understand my struggle...

  • Sajuuk Khar.1509Sajuuk Khar.1509 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 15, 2020

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:
    Ah okay I think I might understand. When I learned English, I was told "they" is always plural, and neutral singular was "it". But thank you for the explanation. Why not use "it" since Jormag is a dragon is also confusing to me. But thank you.

    The use of "it" as a singular in regards to a person is considered offensive in many places because "it" is typically used for objects, and so speaking about a person as if they were an object is generally frowned upon. The word "they" retains the humanizing elements of other words like he/him/she/her, and is thus the preferred term when talking about people.

  • Taril.8619Taril.8619 Member ✭✭✭

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:

    @Atomos.7593 said:

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:
    So just one? Why use 'they' if there is only one? (sorry, not native English speaker here)

    Yes, there is just one Jormag. They is often used in English to refer to people without distinguishing between genders (for example when you don't know what gender the person you are referring to may be). So as an example, I would say over the internet about someone who's gender I don't know, they like GW2, instead of he/she likes GW2.

    Ah okay I think I might understand. When I learned English, I was told "they" is always plural, and neutral singular was "it". But thank you for the explanation. Why not use "it" since Jormag is a dragon is also confusing to me. But thank you.

    There's many reasons.

    The most common one, is when speaking, a native English speaker will typically use "they" in the scenario, as it rolls off the tongue more naturally.

    Another reason is that "it" can come across as impersonal or offensive when talking about a living thing.

    It's one of the many silly quirks of the English language. But yes, both "it" and "they" can be used when talking about a singular entity and in fact can be used interchangeably in such a fashion and still be correct. Even if only "they" is usable when referring to plurals.

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  • Ashantara.8731Ashantara.8731 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:
    Try to speak 4 languages, maybe you will understand my struggle...

    I am fluent in three (English isn't my native language, either) and in addition had French and Latin at school. ;)

  • Raknar.4735Raknar.4735 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 16, 2020

    @Atomos.7593 said:

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:

    @Atomos.7593 said:

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:
    So just one? Why use 'they' if there is only one? (sorry, not native English speaker here)

    Yes, there is just one Jormag. They is often used in English to refer to people without distinguishing between genders (for example when you don't know what gender the person you are referring to may be). So as an example, I would say over the internet about someone who's gender I don't know, they like GW2, instead of he/she likes GW2.

    Ah okay I think I might understand. When I learned English, I was told "they" is always plural, and neutral singular was "it". But thank you for the explanation. Why not use "it" since Jormag is a dragon is also confusing to me. But thank you.

    Yeah "it" would probably have been a more clearer meaning option here.

    YEP. While Taimi and Gorrik (and Anet) started using „they“ for Jormag in the prologue magazine describing the EDs, due to Aurene being gendered, we haven‘t heard from Jormag directly what its preferred pronouns are (and I doubt Jormag even cares).
    Until then, Jormag will just keep being a sentient natural disaster to me. A danger that has to be contained. So „it“ or simply „Jormag“ it is.

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  • Raknar.4735Raknar.4735 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 16, 2020

    @Raknar.4735 said:

    @Atomos.7593 said:

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:

    @Atomos.7593 said:

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:
    So just one? Why use 'they' if there is only one? (sorry, not native English speaker here)

    Yes, there is just one Jormag. They is often used in English to refer to people without distinguishing between genders (for example when you don't know what gender the person you are referring to may be). So as an example, I would say over the internet about someone who's gender I don't know, they like GW2, instead of he/she likes GW2.

    Ah okay I think I might understand. When I learned English, I was told "they" is always plural, and neutral singular was "it". But thank you for the explanation. Why not use "it" since Jormag is a dragon is also confusing to me. But thank you.

    Yeah "it" would probably have been a more clearer meaning option here.

    YEP. While Taimi and Gorrik (and Anet) started using „they“ for Jormag in the prologue magazine describing the EDs, due to Aurene being gendered, we haven‘t heard from Jormag directly what its preferred pronouns are (and I doubt Jormag even cares).
    Until then, Jormag will just keep being a sentient natural disaster to me. A danger that has to be contained. So „it“ or simply „Jormag“ it is.

    Actually, after looking into it a bit more, Anet even tells us that Jormag doesn‘t care, as long as it benefits from it.
    „Jormag is fine with you perceiving Jormag in whatever way best persuades you to want what Jormag wants“
    Source: https://twitter.com/tomabernathy/status/1176063546855055360
    So yeah, using whatever pronouns you desire for Jormag is fine.

    Messed up edit, came out as double post.

    You have a heart of gold. Don't let them take it from you.
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  • Randulf.7614Randulf.7614 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 16, 2020

    @Fueki.4753 said:
    There is only one Jormag.
    But for some unnecessary reason, Arenanet started to use the third person plural for her,
    instead of using 'it' as they did for other dragons.

    "It" was in some ways the incorrect use. "It" is used for objects and items and "they" is used for people or personalities. However in the beginning, the Dragons were often still portrayed as forces of nature and the humanising of them that came later meant that "it" was no longer appropriate (not that it should have been if being correct)

    There are also conflictions within the rules between American English and British English

    Then again, it's video game and such things are fairly trivial

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  • Randulf.7614Randulf.7614 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 16, 2020

    I think the idea Anet have been trying to convey is that the Elder Dragons specifically have transcended well beyond being animals. They are their own beings, their own identities - a sentience which almost makes them their own race.

    At the beginning Tyrian understanding of the Dragons was much more restricted, so whilst "it" was more common usage, had they known what they came to learn (or the writers had pushed that side of things more), then "they" would have been correct back then as it is now.

    The language used has changed as the understanding changed. Whether Anet deliberately intended evolve things in that manner that I can't say, but it's one of the more interesting things they worked into their writing (to me anyway)

    What sleep is here? What dreams there are in the unctuous coiling of the snakes mortal shuffling. weapon in my hand. My hand the arcing deathblow at the end of all things. The horror. The horror. I embrace it. . .

  • Pifil.5193Pifil.5193 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 17, 2020

    @Fueki.4753 said:

    @Randulf.7614 said:
    "It" was in some ways the incorrect use. "It" is used for objects and items and "they" is used for people or personalities.

    Dragons are still non-human animals.
    And non-human animals, whose gender is not known, are usually referred to as "it".

    Many of these animals have personalities.
    Sometimes they even have more personality than some people.

    In a world with so many sentient races saying "people" or "sentient creatures" is more useful than "non-human." "Non-human" works on our world but not on Tyria where humans are only one of probably a few dozen sentient races.

    I would say "they" should be used for all people, that is all sentient creatures, so "they" would be used for charr, asura, hylek, and so on and "it" for objects, items, non-sentient creatures. Referring to a charr or norn, for example, as "it" can be considered rude or demeaning and is probably quite foolish if they're within earshot.

    On a historical note "they" has been used in English for the third person singular for centuries, perhaps it's not so common in US English but I know I grew up using it back in the day.

  • In regular English language they means multiple, so i agree its confusing and should not be used. The majority of people (especialy outside America) dont know those alternative pronouns, call me oldfashioned but i stick to pre millenium English, which i learned at school.

  • Randulf.7614Randulf.7614 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Bolbo Baggins.8594 said:
    In regular English language they means multiple, so i agree its confusing and should not be used. The majority of people (especialy outside America) dont know those alternative pronouns, call me oldfashioned but i stick to pre millenium English, which i learned at school.

    As the poster above states, “they” has had multiple meanings or uses for a very long time. It’s not a post millennium thing

    What sleep is here? What dreams there are in the unctuous coiling of the snakes mortal shuffling. weapon in my hand. My hand the arcing deathblow at the end of all things. The horror. The horror. I embrace it. . .

  • Hannelore.8153Hannelore.8153 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 17, 2020

    The whole thing about Jormag being male in the past was a trick to keep the Sons of Svanir serving them. Its part of the power of persuasion. Realistically, Elder Dragons don't have genders and while they seem to have a reproductive cycle its likely asexual, because while we've heard some of family trees we've never heard of any dragon having mates, only offspring.

    I think both "it" and "they" are fitting for Jormag, since its technically a force of nature, although sentient.

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  • Bolbo Baggins.8594Bolbo Baggins.8594 Member ✭✭
    edited September 17, 2020

    @Randulf.7614 said:

    @Bolbo Baggins.8594 said:
    In regular English language they means multiple, so i agree its confusing and should not be used. The majority of people (especialy outside America) dont know those alternative pronouns, call me oldfashioned but i stick to pre millenium English, which i learned at school.

    As the poster above states, “they” has had multiple meanings or uses for a very long time. It’s not a post millennium thing

    Yes, the thing is the use of They for the last five/ten years is different. Its part of alternative pronounse where some people (humans) identify themself with. I dont think a dragon does that, right, being a Primordal force of nature and all? I leave it with that, its not really a big thing.

  • Yeah, it's one of the frustrations of the English language. Using "they" for a singular pronoun is a common practice, even though it may not be technically/grammatically correct. Considering how so many new words get added to English every year just through common usage, it makes me wish we could collectively invent an acceptable singular gender-neutral pronoun, get it commonly used, and get it adopted into the language.

  • Eekasqueak.7850Eekasqueak.7850 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Language is just throwing stuff at a wall and seeing what sticks really.

  • Teratus.2859Teratus.2859 Member ✭✭✭✭

    It would have been better and made more sense simply based on the fact that Jormag isn't human therefore you can't dehumanise it.
    It isn't just used for objects it's also used for non human creatures too which Dragons in fantasy settings also qualify as.

  • Tayga.3192Tayga.3192 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Since English doesn't have a gender-neutral "he" or "she", people tend to use "they" instead.

    As far as I know, Arenanet always used "he" or "she" for the dragons, no? Dragons have genders, and for obvious reasons they made Jormag a nonbinary (?) dragon. That's why sentient races call Jormag "they".

  • Sajuuk Khar.1509Sajuuk Khar.1509 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Tayga.3192 said:
    As far as I know, Arenanet always used "he" or "she" for the dragons, no? Dragons have genders, and for obvious reasons they made Jormag a nonbinary (?) dragon. That's why sentient races call Jormag "they".

    Actually, it was stated all the way back when GW first released that the dragons have no genders. they may refer to themselves using gendered words, but they are still technically genderless.

  • I'm surprised that this is not mentioned, but "they" is also the pronoun of choice for people who identify as non-binary, or, in other words, they don't identify as either male or female and, as such, don't prefer gender-specific pronouns such as "he" or "she."

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  • Fueki.4753Fueki.4753 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 18, 2020

    @Sajuuk Khar.1509 said:
    Actually, it was stated all the way back when GW first released that the dragons have no genders. they may refer to themselves using gendered words, but they are still technically genderless.

    Back when GW released, Arenanet didn't even have the idea of Elder Dragons.
    But in GW2, non-crystal dragons were usually referred to as 'it'.

  • @Blocki.4931 said:

    They is just referring to them as gender neutral beings.
    So only one.

    That is not entirely correct. They is used to refer to an identity of unknown gender.
    Some that do not identify as either male or woman try use the word they as a replacement for he or she, but this is not how it is intended and not how language rules work. To make it an extension to the rule this should be used in this way for several years by a majority of the people speaking the language.
    I would rather say this is a dialect as it is used mostly in the LGBT-community (form a linguistic point of view). There are also people within the LGBT-community as they dislike the use of they as well (in essence it is no better then "it"). The most polite way to deal with situations where the current language has trouble with how people might identify nowadays is to use someones chosen name. An example. A third gender (or non-binary) name could be Andy (if that is the name the person identifies with). Then a good way is To say "Andy is up to something" instead of "They are up to something". Using someones name helps in avoiding any issues in the language hiats when dealing with third gender persons.

    I also think that the writers know this and that they would refer to Jormag als Jormag when they wanted Jormag to be third-gender or non-binary in sexuality. I rather think they have other reasons to not specify it and handle it as an unknown gender. In essence dragons are not humans and the way they tick is very different. Gender is such a human term. For all we know are dragons hermaphrodites, but their existence is much more magical in essence then biological in the first place.

    So tl;dr. They is used to refer to and identity of unknown gender. This indicates that Jormag is of unknown gender for some unknown reasons.

  • @Randulf.7614 said:

    @Bolbo Baggins.8594 said:
    In regular English language they means multiple, so i agree its confusing and should not be used. The majority of people (especialy outside America) dont know those alternative pronouns, call me oldfashioned but i stick to pre millenium English, which i learned at school.

    As the poster above states, “they” has had multiple meanings or uses for a very long time. It’s not a post millennium thing

    For a chunk of time in the 19th and 20th centuries, the "singular they" (referring to one person with a plural pronoun and a plural verb) was considered grammatically incorrect. (Then again, in 13th Century Middle English, the roles currently played by "he" and "plural they" used the same pronoun. It was spelled "he".)

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    Exercise your whimsy.

  • Clyan.1593Clyan.1593 Member ✭✭✭

    It's a dragon. Maybe it's multiple dragons in disguise as one dragon. Whatever.
    It's still a dragony creature. The gender thing is just marketing.
    Imagine Jormag to come out and say he / she / it / they identify as a lesbian cactus automobile. So what? Still a dragon.
    Imagine Jormag to come out as a bim-bam-ziggedy-woobly-fitz-yabb-donker-dank. Yeah, what now? Still a dragon. Has to die.

  • The singular use of 'they' goes back centuries. Here is an article from The Oxford English Dictionary:

    https://public.oed.com/blog/a-brief-history-of-singular-they/

    It isn't confusing.

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  • Ben K.6238Ben K.6238 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Taril.8619 said:

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:

    @Atomos.7593 said:

    @Greattyphoon.3120 said:
    So just one? Why use 'they' if there is only one? (sorry, not native English speaker here)

    Yes, there is just one Jormag. They is often used in English to refer to people without distinguishing between genders (for example when you don't know what gender the person you are referring to may be). So as an example, I would say over the internet about someone who's gender I don't know, they like GW2, instead of he/she likes GW2.

    Ah okay I think I might understand. When I learned English, I was told "they" is always plural, and neutral singular was "it". But thank you for the explanation. Why not use "it" since Jormag is a dragon is also confusing to me. But thank you.

    There's many reasons.

    The most common one, is when speaking, a native English speaker will typically use "they" in the scenario, as it rolls off the tongue more naturally.

    Another reason is that "it" can come across as impersonal or offensive when talking about a living thing.

    It's one of the many silly quirks of the English language. But yes, both "it" and "they" can be used when talking about a singular entity and in fact can be used interchangeably in such a fashion and still be correct. Even if only "they" is usable when referring to plurals.

    If I recall correctly, Bangar actually does refer to Jormag as "it". (Probably says more about his personality than it does about Jormag.)

  • Fenella.2634Fenella.2634 Member ✭✭✭

    So... We are trying to avoid offending a dragon we are likely going to battle, maybe kill? How nice of us. I wonder if Jormag cares which pronoun people use.

  • Raknar.4735Raknar.4735 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Fenella.2634 said:
    So... We are trying to avoid offending a dragon we are likely going to battle, maybe kill? How nice of us. I wonder if Jormag cares which pronoun people use.

    Jormag doesn't care about pronouns, Arenanet already stated that.

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  • Fueki.4753Fueki.4753 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Raknar.4735 said:

    @Fenella.2634 said:
    So... We are trying to avoid offending a dragon we are likely going to battle, maybe kill? How nice of us. I wonder if Jormag cares which pronoun people use.

    Jormag doesn't care about pronouns, Arenanet already stated that.

    Then there should have been no reason to switch from it to they.
    Yet they did it anyway. I hope this remains as a singular hiccup.

  • Teratus.2859Teratus.2859 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Fueki.4753 said:

    @Raknar.4735 said:

    @Fenella.2634 said:
    So... We are trying to avoid offending a dragon we are likely going to battle, maybe kill? How nice of us. I wonder if Jormag cares which pronoun people use.

    Jormag doesn't care about pronouns, Arenanet already stated that.

    Then there should have been no reason to switch from it to they.
    Yet they did it anyway. I hope this remains as a singular hiccup.

    Indeed, in a way it kinda sounds like our mortal characters are making a big deal out of nothing lol.
    Perhaps we should stop projecting our human sentiment onto dragons XD

  • @Greattyphoon.3120 said:
    So just one? Why use 'they' if there is only one? (sorry, not native English speaker here)

    Because "it" - the singular gender neutral term - is considered highly offensive to use towards a living being.

    Not that we actually care about Jormag's feelings, but it's just standard English grammar usage to not use "it" on living beings.

    Granted, two decades ago, male pronouns were more often used when gender was unknown, but social movements since have led the use of "they" instead.

    @Fenella.2634 said:
    So... We are trying to avoid offending a dragon we are likely going to battle, maybe kill? How nice of us. I wonder if Jormag cares which pronoun people use.

    Jormag actually doesn't give a kitten about what people call it. The Sons of Svanir - and most norn by extension - refer to it as a male. Jormag goes by whatever pronoun genderizing that makes it easiest to persuade and corrupt victims - male, female, or neutral.

    Using "they" isn't for the notion of not offending anyone, but because it's proper English in modern times.

    @Fueki.4753 said:

    @Raknar.4735 said:

    @Fenella.2634 said:
    So... We are trying to avoid offending a dragon we are likely going to battle, maybe kill? How nice of us. I wonder if Jormag cares which pronoun people use.

    Jormag doesn't care about pronouns, Arenanet already stated that.

    Then there should have been no reason to switch from it to they.
    Yet they did it anyway. I hope this remains as a singular hiccup.

    It's switched because of Tyrian's view of Elder Dragons has grown since the beginning of the game, in large thanks to Aurene. Because of this, they went from the pronoun used for non-sapient gender neutral nouns, to the pronoun used for sapient gender neutral nouns.

    Again: has nothing about "offending people".

    If anyone were to be offended by using "it", it'd probably be Aurene, whom the Commander and friends don't really want to offend.

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  • Vancho.8750Vancho.8750 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Jormag is 1000 skritt in a trench coat. That is why they is used.