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Old 08-31-2003, 11:19 AM   #1
Aragost
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Sting Sting, Orcrist, & Glamdring

Did these swords glow blue after they had killed orcs and the orc blood was on them?
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Old 08-31-2003, 11:34 AM   #2
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Sting

No, they glow blue when orcs are near.
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Old 08-31-2003, 11:47 AM   #3
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The three Elven-blades glowed with a bluish light around the edges when orcs approached. What substance or 'magic' they were imbued with that gave them this virtue I do not know.
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Old 09-01-2003, 02:09 PM   #4
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Sting

Since Elves were so "in tune" with nature, then I'm sure that they could imbue their creations with the same power. For a race of people who could sense the personalities of the people around them, it probably wouldn't be too hard to sense a creature of pure hate like an Orc.
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Old 09-01-2003, 03:39 PM   #5
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These three swords were made in Gondolin. Makes you wonder if all of Turgon's troops were so equipped or whether they were for the aristocracy only, also whether all the Noldorin kingdoms produced such effective hardware?
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Old 09-01-2003, 03:56 PM   #6
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I think that Aragost is asking that since blood from an orc is part of an orc, if the presense of the blood of an orc on the blade is enough to make the swords glow. I would say no, if that were the case the person using the sword wouldn't be able to tell when all of the orcs were dead. It probably tunes into their spirits.

[ September 02, 2003: Message edited by: burrahobbit ]
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Old 09-02-2003, 08:41 AM   #7
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It states somewhere in the Hobbit that the elf-weapons glow because of the hatred the elves have against the orcs: a hatred they even put in all their works. this makes me wonder why the 'glowing weapons'are never mentioned somewhere else, someone would sure have seen it in some other battle.
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Old 09-02-2003, 01:38 PM   #8
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I read somewhere that Glamdring belonged to Turgon, then after Gondolin's downfall it found its way into a troll hoard, which I fouind fascinating.
Ah thanks for that, I was wondering how come the swords glowed.
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Old 09-02-2003, 01:40 PM   #9
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It would seem like having your weapons glow when the enemy is near would be of great stratigic value (an early warning system). I wonder why more of the forces weren't similarly equiped?

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Old 09-02-2003, 02:04 PM   #10
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I was wondering about who owned these swords. It's pretty well established that Turgon had Glamdring, but who did Orcrist belong to? Elrond called it "a famous blade", so it had to belong to somebody important. Anybody know?
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Old 09-02-2003, 02:30 PM   #11
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i cant find anywhere that states to whom Orcrist belonged, but i think it must of been Turgon's second in command or such an elf, as they were made as a pair. on a funnier note, can you imagine the battle of the last alliance? complete ranks of elves, with elven blades. a giant field of blue, lol.
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Old 09-02-2003, 06:33 PM   #12
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I think that's because you answered it, burra. [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]

It would represent a major design fault if Orcish blood caused the blades to glow. By the same token, Orcish bones and other remains in the vicinity would set them off. Not very useful when your primary concern is the ones that are living. [img]smilies/tongue.gif[/img]

[ September 02, 2003: Message edited by: The Saucepan Man ]
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Old 09-02-2003, 06:43 PM   #13
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Sting

Quote:
Elrond called it "a famous blade", so it had to belong to somebody important.
I suppose it could easily have been wielded by Glorfindel or Ecthelion, or possibly even Tuor, during the Fall of Gondolin.
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Old 09-02-2003, 09:21 PM   #14
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Sting

How would Glamdring and Orcrist have made their way into the troll hoard. The sack of Gondolin was mostly carried out by orcs, which were terrified of the swords. Because of this I doubt that they would have taken them with them. I don't think anyone else would have taken them either, so how did the trolls come by them.
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Old 09-03-2003, 06:49 AM   #15
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Sting

Thorin took Orcrist with him, did anything happen to it after that? Also what happens to the other two after their respectful owners left middle earth?
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Old 09-03-2003, 08:23 AM   #16
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Sting

The Hobbit gives a different, more elemental explanation for the glow emitted by the swords:
Quote:
[Gandalf] took out his sword again, and again it flashed in the dark by itself. It burned with a rage that made it gleam if goblins were about; now it was bright as blue flame for delight in the killing of the great lord of the cave.

The elves were the first to charge. Their hatred for the goblins is cold and bitter. Their spears and swords shone in the gloom with a gleam of chill flame, so deadly was the wrath of the hands that held them.
This is a slightly different take on the glow. The “early warning” use of the swords is more of a side effect than a primary design function. Indeed, the tactical advantage of a glowing blade is debatable and could as often be a hindrance as a boon, for instance, if you’re trying to organize an ambush but you’re giving off a glow like a stadium at night.

It’s also interesting that the swords glow notably on at least two other occasions:
Quote:
From out of the shadow a red sword leaped flaming.
Glamdring glittered white in answer.

Sting flashed out, and the sharp elven-blade sparkled in the silver light, but at its edges a blue fire flicked. Then holding the star aloft and the bright sword advanced, Frodo, hobbit of the Shire, walked steadily down to meet [Shelob].
Obviously there are orcs about in both instances, so there’s nothing conclusive here, but the phrasing, particularly in Gandalf’s confrontation with the Balrog, gives a strong indication (at least to my mind) that the swords react with a glow that’s commensurate with the “evil” of the Elf-foe that they face. The passion of the wielder may also be a factor. Compare with the Chamber of Mazarbul, where Glamdring issues “a pale light” and Sting merely “glinted at the edges” even though the company faces a large group of orcs in close proximity.

In answer to the original question, based on the Hobbit quote one might theorize that a blooded sword could actually glow brighter than usual for a while, even if the goblin the blood belonged to was dead.

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Old 09-03-2003, 08:35 AM   #17
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Sting

But your first quote is interesting, Mister Underhill, because it suggests that the swords glowed because of the wrath of the hands that held them, not because of the Orcs at all. Of course, if this was the case, then they would most likely glow when the Elves were facing Orcs because of their hatred of the Orcs. Similarly with Gandalf, he would detest this enemy, and therefore his sword glowed. But it might just be me...
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Old 09-03-2003, 02:05 PM   #18
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Question

samrohan wrote:
Quote:
Thorin took Orcrist with him, did anything happen to it after that? Also what happens to the other two after their respectful owners left middle earth?
From The Hobbit:
Quote:
They buried Thorin deep beneath the Mountain, and Bard laid the Arkenstone upon his breast. "There let it lie till the Mountain falls!" he said. "May it bring good fortune to all his folk that dwell here after!" Upon his tomb the Elvenking then laid Orcrist, the elvish sword that had been taken from Thorin in captivity. It is said in songs that it gleamed ever in the dark if foes approached, and the fortress of the dwarves could not be taken by surprise.
So Orcrist was entombed with Thorin. As for Glamdring, I would suppose that Gandalf took it with him, but I don't think we have any evidence either way.
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Old 09-03-2003, 07:20 PM   #19
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Sting

I believe that Gandalf kept Glamdring with him throughout the Lord of the Rings, although I'm not sure what happened to it when he fell into the chasm with the Balrog. I think it was destroyed then.
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Old 09-03-2003, 07:30 PM   #20
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Sting

Quote:
I'm not sure what happened to it when he fell into the chasm with the Balrog. I think it was destroyed then
I don't have a quote to back it up, but I'm sure it says Gandalf has Glamdring later in LOTR, it might be when he is facing the witch-king. I think he kept Glamdring with him his entire battle with the balrog, and it remained with his body when he died, so that when he was brought back to life, his sword was there.
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Old 09-03-2003, 07:51 PM   #21
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Sting

That would make more sense. Although, couldn't he have fought with his staff against the Witch-king? I'm sure that would have worked well too.
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Old 09-03-2003, 09:22 PM   #22
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Glamdring was not distroyed. Gandalf had it when he was in Rohan, and he also had it when he went to the Grey Havens.

Quote:
Page 500 The Two Towers
'Come, come!' said Gandalf. 'We are all friends here. Or should be; for the laughter of Mordor will be our only reward, if we quarrel. My errand is pressing. Here is at least my sword, goodman Hama. Keep it well. Glamdring it is called, for the Elves made it long ago. Now let me pass. Come, Aragorn!'
Quote:
Page 970-971 The Return of the King
... And Gandalf, too, was now riding on his tall grey horse, all clad in white with a great mantle of blue and silver over all, and the long sword Glamdring at his side
According to the index that I have in the LOTR, they don't talk about it during the part with the Witch king, but he did have it [img]smilies/cool.gif[/img]
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Old 09-04-2003, 06:11 AM   #23
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Sting

Yes, Gandalf definately keeps Glamdring with him after the little Moria contre-temps. He does have it in Rohan and probably in Gondor.

I however wonder what happens to these weapons when their carriers go to the Grey Havens?
I don't suppose they would require them on the other side.
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Old 09-04-2003, 06:42 AM   #24
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Sting

Thank you for the quotes, Gorwingel. I had suspected that they were there, but been too lazy to look them up in the early hours of this morning. [img]smilies/rolleyes.gif[/img]

You are right, samrohan, that there would be little need of weapons in Valinor. No doubt, bows and spears would be used for hunting but swords would have little more than ceremonial status. Then again, with the Final Battle looming at some point in the distant future, they would need to keep in practice. [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]

Gandalf, would have had to have reached an accomodation with Turgon as to the ownership of Glamdring, of course, since Turgon was its original bearer and probably had the better claim to it. I suspect, in any event, that he would have more use for it (in ceremonial/heirloom terms, if nothing else) than Gandalf.

I wonder whether Frodo took Sting with him to the Undying Lands, or whether it ended up in the Shire's Mathom House with his mithril mail?
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Old 09-04-2003, 06:22 PM   #25
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Sting

I think it probably ended up in the Shire's Mathom house, because Frodo especially wouldn't have had a need for it in Valinor, since he wouldn't have had to bother about the Final Battle, being a small, adorable Hobbit.
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Old 09-10-2003, 03:57 PM   #26
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I could be wrong but did't Sam keep sting after they got back from Gondor. Frodo said he wouldn't use a sword ever again I think. I think Sam used it during the scoring of the shire. So I assum Sam gave it to his children maybe. I could be way off I don't have my book with me right now.
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Old 09-10-2003, 09:02 PM   #27
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Sting

I think, though it sounds like it's already been established, that the blades would only glow when there were live orcs...a present threat to the blade-bearer.

What I wonder is, can you control the glowing? Suppose you were trying to sneak past orc-guards and didn't want to be seen? Would you have to cover up your blade, or can you, in Pixar's "A Bug's Life" style tell the blade to "turn your butt off"? [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]
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Old 09-11-2003, 08:26 PM   #28
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This is an interesting topic.

Quote:
What I wonder is, can you control the glowing? Suppose you were trying to sneak past orc-guards and didn't want to be seen? Would you have to cover up your blade, or can you, in Pixar's "A Bug's Life" style tell the blade to "turn your butt off"?
I would think that they might be able to turn it off...but not with their words maybe. Since someone said that they thought the Elves controlled the glowing by their hate for the Orcs, maybe their own mind turns it off...if that doesn't sound too weird. And if they aren't able to turn it off, I would think they would just sheath the sword or cover it with their cloak to hide the glowing. But that's just my opinion on the matter. [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]
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Old 09-12-2003, 04:03 PM   #29
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Sting

Hooray, the regent of Nargothrond returns!
I believe that Frodo kept Sting, Gandalf told him to wear it at Cormallen.
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