Le Guin's Nameless Ones and the Mistwraith

originally posted by Harris Bolus

This post contains references to material from some later books. I don’t know exactly which, but be warned if you haven’t read up to book 9. That’s how far I am.

I just finished re-reading The Tombs of Atuan by Ursula K. Le Guin, and I noticed some parallels between The Nameless ones and the Mistwraith. Of course, both lack discernible Names. But for both, there is an instance where a Name is discovered. Ged figures out the Name of his shadow in order to defeat it. Another similarity is their cruelty and almost mindless malevolence. They also share the ability to pick up on some magic, and magic is not so effective against them. And one of the greatest risks of both is possession of a wizard.

Of course there are big differences. I doubt the Mistwraith would be docile enough for the worship of a cult. The origin of The Nameless ones is unknown except that they are ‘the old powers of the earth,’ while the Mistwraith was made by humans, etc.

What do y’all think? Are they parallels, a source of inspiration, divergent ideas from a common source, no relationship, or something else? And do any other similarities and differences come to mind?