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Fellowship of Fans > Books  > The Weapons of the Silmarillion

The Weapons of the Silmarillion

The Silmarillion plays an important part in Tolkien’s larger legendarium. It is overflowing with memorable characters, imagination-expanding stories, and unique artifacts that grow Tolkien’s lore to incredible heights. Of these particular artifacts are weapons, including the likes of swords, bows, arrows, axes, and even maces. Today, I want to go over some of these fascinating artifacts and detail the individual histories of each one. So, without further ado, let’s get into it.


Starting off, we have Dagmor, the sword of Beren. Like most of the weapons on this list, Dagmor doesn’t have a lot of history behind it. The little we do know of it revolves around the sword belonging to Beren Erchamion in the First Age and its name meaning “Dark Slayer” in Sindarin. There is no detailed description of how it looked.


Next up, we have Belthronding, the bow of Beleg Strongbow. Belthronding is interesting as it is one of only a few named bows within Tolkien’s legendarium, yet its uniqueness and mystique lie mainly within the arrow that is placed on its bowstring and not the bow itself. Speaking of which, that leads us to the third weapon on this list: Dailir. Dailir was an arrow that returned to Beleg unharmed every time he released it from his bow. Now, many people regularly debate whether or not Dailir actually returned to Beleg in the style of the Yaka Arrow from Guardians of the Galaxy or if it was just a really hardy, strong, and reliable arrow that Beleg kept in his arsenal. In my humble opinion, I believe it’s the former, as the implications are just too downright awesome to settle for the latter.


Angrist, the Iron Clever, was a notable dagger from the First Age. It was made by the dwarf-smith Telchar of Nogrod for Feanor’s son, Curufin. Curufin would use the dagger when he and his brother Celegorm attempted to attack Beren and Luthien in Brethil. The dagger would be lost upon Curuthin, and it would find itself within the hands of Beren thereafter. From there, Beren would use Angrist to pry a Silmaril from the Iron Crown of Morgoth, after which he would lose it when fleeing from the awakening Dark Lord.


Anguirel and Anglachel were twin blades forged by Eol, the Dark Elf. They were both made from the remnants of a meteorite in Gondolin, and each sword shared a distinct similarity in appearance as both blades were black in color and glowed a special pale fire that was unique to them. While we don’t have much info on Anguirel, other than the fact that it was stolen from under Eol’s nose by his own son, Maegiln; Anglachel’s history, on the other hand, is noted throughout all of the Silmarillion and can be found in other works of Tolkien as well, like the Children of Hurin, where it plays a very important role in the story of Turin Turambar.


Shortly after crafting Anglachel, Eol would give the sword to King Thingol as payment to live near Doriath in the Forest of Nan Elmoth. Yet when given this special weapon, Melian, a Maia and the wife of King Thingol, advised against using it as the sword was seemingly imbued with Eol’s own malice and hate. Later in the First Age, the sword would find its way into the hands of Beleg Strongbow, and he would use it when fighting side by side with his friend, Turin. Nothing notable happened with the sword for many years until one faithful night when Beleg tried to free a captured Turin from his holdings. The blade, through its own will and power, pricked Turin, and in thinking his capturers had come back to torture him, Turin grabbed the sword and killed Beleg with it. Though he did not mean to, Turin had slain his friend, and in doing so, the blade of the sword ceased to glow as it was in a state of mourning. Turin would then take up the sword, and after reforging it in Nargothrond, Turin would rename it to GurthangIron of Death, and it would be his primary weapon from then on. Turin would use the sword to kill the dragon Glaurung and then himself quickly after, breaking the blade in the process.


The second (and last) bow on this list, the Bow of Bregor, was a prized heirloom of the House of Beor in the First Age. It was the bow of, you guessed it, Bregor, the Lord of Ladros and head of the House of Beor. When Bregor died, his bow was not forgotten as through the years, it would be kept safe and honored by the Edain. The Edain would then take the bow to Numenor, where it was placed in the Halls of the Kings to be recognized until the island’s destruction. It was then that the bow was lost forever in the Western Sea, never to be seen again.


Dramborleg was the axe of Tuor. It was known for its power and might. The axe was significant in both design and the role it played in defending Gondolin’s people from the forces of Morgoth. Dramborleg would survive through the First Age and into the Second when it was brought to Numenor to reside in the Halls of the Kings like the aforementioned Bow of Bregor. And like that Bow, Dramborleg would see itself lost to time when the waves overcame Numenor, and all was destroyed.


Another weapon that eventually made its way to Numenor is Aranruth; but unlike the previously mentioned swords, Aranruth did not sit idle in the Halls of the Kings when it arrived to the island nation. Instead, it would become the sword of the Kings and Queens of Numenor, used possibly by the likes of Ar-Pharazon himself. Aranruth’s history does not stop there, though, as its origins date back to the mid-First Age when it belonged to Thingol, the King of Doriath. Though not much is known about it during this time, it was said that the sword was one of Thingol’s most prized possessions.



Durin’s Axe was an heirloom to the Dwarves of Durin’s Folk. It was handed down to each Durin that was reincarnated and it remained in Khazad-dum well into the Third Age. Though it was seemingly lost after Balin’s expedition to reclaim Khazad-dum in the Third Age, many believe that the axe was eventually found and used by Durin VII when the Dwarves of Erebor returned to Khazad-dum in the Fourth Age.


The only named spear on this list, and in any of Tolkien’s legendarium for that matter, belonged to High-King Gil-galad, and its name was Aeglos. While Aeglos does not have a storied history, nor did Tolkien give it a vivid or detailed description, it still remains one of the most unique weapons throughout any of Tolkien’s stories. Its glory can be beheld in both the prologue of the Fellowship of the Ring and the first season of the Rings of Power.


Ringil was the sword of High-King Fingolfin. It is said that the sword “glittered like ice” when the king used it on the battlefield. Before he fell, Fingolfin used Ringil to wound Morgoth seven times on the steps of Angband, including stabbing his foot, leaving the Dark Lord with a limp that he would have to live with for the rest of his existence.


Lastly, we have GrondHammer of the Underworld. Equipped with quite possibly the coolest name in all of Tolkien’s writings, this mace of Morgoth was used in combat many times by the Dark Lord. One of these times was the aforementioned fight against High-King Fingolfin, where every time Morgoth swung his mighty mace, a rumbling was felt when it hit the ground. After Morgoth’s fall, Grond would live on, but not in the form of a mace, but instead, a battering ram. Yes, indeed the battering ram we see break down the great doors of Minas Tirith in the Return of the King was named after Morgoth’s great weapon of choice.

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Christopher Thompson

Ever since I was a kid, The Lord of the Rings, and the rest of Tolkien’s legendarium for that matter, has played a significant role in my life. The tales, characters, and mythos that Tolkien crafted, inspired me to create my own stories of friendship, hope, and loss. It is because of Tolkien, that we can enjoy one of the greatest literary works of all time—and for that, I am immensely grateful.

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