Articles

Swords…

In Uncategorized on April 4, 2010 by Vikas

I have always been stupendously held in awe of usage of swords in movies and books (I just hope others are too… else it would be weird) and since it is my blog I decided to put a collection of some badass swords used in either fiction or history.

1.Nasril (Andúril)


In J. R. R. Tolkien’s fictional prehistory of the world (Arda), Narsil was the sword of King Elendil of the Dúnedain who used it in the war against Sauron, the sword in a later age was reforged as Andúril.

Elendil, however, was killed during the battle and Narsil was broken in shards. His son Isildur then used the hilt-shard of Narsil to cut the One Ring from the finger of Sauron, thus defeating and vanquishing him. The shards of Narsil were passed on as heirloom, until the sword was reforged and handed over to Aragorn, who renamed it as Anduril. Aragorn receiving the sword was an action recognizing him as an heir of Isildur and the rightful king of Gondor. It is also referred to as ‘the sword that was broken’.

2. Excalibur

Excalibur is the legendary sword of King Arthur, sometimes attributed with magical powers or associated with the rightful sovereignty of Great Britain. Sometimes Excalibur and the Sword in the Stone (the proof of Arthur’s lineage) are said to be the same weapon, but in most versions they are considered separate. The sword was associated with the Arthurian legend very early. In Welsh, the sword is called Caledfwlch.

There are two swords that appear in Arthurian legends: the Sword in the Stone, which only Arthur could wield, thereby proving his rightful kingship; and the sword given to him by the Lady of the Lake. In some versions there is only one sword, while in others, the Sword in Stone is broken and later Arthur receives Excalibur from the Lady of the Lake. Having a magical origin, the sword was unbreakable and its scabbard protected the king from physical harm. Morgan Le Fay, Arthur’s half-sister, stole the sword. It was recovered but the scabbard was lost, hence allowing King Arthur to be mortally wounded in the Battle of Camlann. Arthur orders one of his knights to throw back the sword in the enchanted lake, and when done so, a hand appeared from the waters to catch it, taking it beneath the water from where it had first emerged.

3. Kusangi-no-Tsurugi

Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi (is a legendary Japanese sword as important to Japan’s history as Excalibur is to Britain’s, and is one of three Imperial Regalia of Japan. It was originally called Ama-no-Murakumo-no-Tsurugi (“Sword of the Gathering Clouds of Heaven”) but its name was later changed to the more popular Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi (“Grass Cutting Sword”).

It was discovered from the body of a giant serpent. In the reign of the XII Emperor, the sword was gifted to Yamato Takeru, who was led into an open grassland as a trap by a warlord. The plan was to ignite the grass and burn Yamato to death. In desperation, Yamato started cutting the grass with his sword and discovered to his amazement that he could control the wind. Using this power, Yamato expanded the fire in the direction of his enemies, defeating them. It was after this incident that Yamato named the sword as “Grasscutter Sword”. Yamato was later killed in a battle by a monster when he ignored his wife’s advice to take the Grasscutter sword with him. The moral of the story: Always listen to your wife.

4. Sword of Gryffindor

Godric Gryffindor’s Sword is a goblin-made sword adorned with large rubies on the pommel. It was once owned by Godric Gryffindor, one of the medieval founders of Hogwarts. In Chamber of Secrets, Harry draws the Sword out of the Sorting Hat to kill a basilisk. The sword also plays a role in Deathly Hallows, where it is revealed to have been imbued with basilisk venom (as the Sword absorbs anything that would make it stronger), and is used to destroy three of Voldemort’s Horcruxes. Because the Sword was goblin-forged, it is indestructible and according to Griphook the goblin, the Sword was originally forged by the goblin Ragnuk the First and “stolen” (purchased) by Gryffindor. The Sword was stolen (or retrieved, as goblins would say) by Griphook when the Sword fell from Harry’s grasp during the raid on Bellatrix Lestrange’s vault in book seven. However, it again returned to human hands later in the book, when Neville pulled it out of the Sorting Hat and used it to decapitate Nagini, Voldemort’s snake. This shows that apparently, no matter where the sword happened to be at the time, it would reappear in the hat when a true member of Gryffindor house is in need of it.

Source of this awesome pic.

5. Lightsaber

A lightsaber a popular weapon, was introduced in sci-fi series Star Wars  and the franchise’s Expanded Universe. The lightsaber consists of a polished metal hilt which projects a blade of energy (plasma) about one meter long. The lightsaber is the signature weapon of the Jedi order and their Sith counterparts, both of whom can use them for offence, or to deflect blaster bolts. Its distinct appearance was created using rotoscoping for the original trilogy, and digitally for the prequel trilogy. The lightsaber first appeared in the original Star Wars film (1977) and every Star Wars movie to date features at least one lightsaber duel.

The lightsaber’s blade cuts through most substances without resistance. It leaves cauterized wounds in flesh, but can be deflected by another lightsaber’s blade, or an energy shield or wall. An active lightsaber gives off a distinctive hum, which rises in pitch and volume as the blade is moved rapidly through the air. Bringing the blade into contact with an object or another lightsaber’s blade produces a loud crackle. And to end it was also referred as “Weapon of Civilized kind”. Though not exactly a sword but in this post owing it its usage techniques.

6. William Wallace’s Sword

Though there are different sides to every story, there is one underlying truth about the tales of the Scottish hero William Wallace. He was a man of big deeds who used a big sword. Our 13th century two handed great sword is likely a sword that the fearsome hero would’ve been eager to use. With its 40-inch blade balanced by a solid steel cross guard and heavy steel pommel, this sword has tremendous potential in the hands of a skilled swordsman. The leather wrapped ricasso allows one to choke up on the blade to offer better balance when fighting in close quarters while both guard and pommel offer themselves as stout striking points in time of need.

7. Hanzo Sword

Hattori Hanzo crafts the finest Japanese steel products in the world; no, he doesn’t work for Toyota. Hattori Hanzo is the merchant of death that Nic Cage wishes he was in Lord of War. In light of this, he vows to God to never produce another sword. Until Uma Thurman comes along and talks him into folding his greatest creation yet. She then proceeds to paint the town red. If she were to have encountered God on her quest; God would have been cut. The blade on this badass weapon is almost as fine as its wielder.

P.S : It was a long post but I wanted to provide the story associated with each sword too.

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2 Responses to “Swords…”

  1. You used my art for the Giffindor sword image. Without my permission and without due credit. Replace it with an official publicity image of the sword or add a notation crediting creator, namely me the man who spent hours in a swimming pool and worked two nights in a row to take that photo.

  2. omg the sword of Gryffindor is insanely EPIC!! If I went to Hogwarts, I would love to be in Gryffindor 🙂

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