On the passing on of Narsil

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
A sword cannot be drawn from the back. You can store it on your back, but you can't use it until you move it back to your hip. (Look up Metatron's YouTube channel, I think he's the one who tested it out.
I have a theory about a scabbard design that could work, but it would have to be specifically designed for that purpose, and it would not cover the blade, just the point.
 

MithLuin

Well-Known Member
It is my understanding that the most convenient way to carry a sword that is too long for a hip sheath is unsheathed in your hand, resting against your shoulder. One-handed Beren probably doesn't want his only hand occupied that way, and we aren't going to want to show Aragorn wandering around that way, either. So, better that we figure out a way for Narsil to be carried on the hip.
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
A hand-and-a-half sword (which is what is sometimes meant by a bastard sword) can be worn on the hip without a problem, I just don't think we need to have Beren running around with two swords hanging off his hip.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
A hand-and-a-half sword (which is what is sometimes meant by a bastard sword) can be worn on the hip without a problem, I just don't think we need to have Beren running around with two swords hanging off his hip.
Maybe Beren doesn’t have each at the same time, he might lose Dagmor and use Narsil after taking it from Curufin.
 
I do not think we can have Beren take Narsil from Curufin. Remember, when he comes out of Angband after taking the Silmaril he is unarmed. He strikes Carcharot with his fist! I think if he had a longsword hanging on his side, he'd try to draw that, or even have it already drawn, because he's still in the fortress of the enemy, and even though everybody's asleep, you never know. So having him carry Narsil at that point would not work very well, I think.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
You're right, that won't work.

So, gifted to the Lords of Andunie by the Eresseans?
So how would Narsil get to the Eresseans? It was forged by Telchar. And how much importance can be placed on it that would be an heirloom if the Eresseans had it and did not partake in the deeds of those days?
 

MithLuin

Well-Known Member
The elves living on Tol Eressea in the 2nd Age are those who were in Middle Earth in the 1st Age. So, it's definitely an option for getting Narsil to Numenor.
 

Faelivrin

Well-Known Member
The Elves of the Houses of Finarfin and Fingolfin had closer relations with the Edain than did the Feanorians and Sindar, so it most likely was passed to Numenor by Noldor ultimately from Fingolfin or Finrod's realms. Finrod had closer relations with the Dwarves than did the other non-Feanorian princes.

But. Narsil could have passed through many hands, like the Dragon-Helm, so there are lots of options for how those particular Noldor got it. Feanorian works got into Thingol's hoard, and all the Noldorin houses/realms probably traded with each other at least to some extent. The Sindar might have traded Dwarven things to the Noldor on occasion.

What sort of story do we want to tell with Narsil?

If it is a gift from Eresseans, why a sword? Numenor was a peaceful place. Was it given at the time when the Numenoreans had started helping the Elves in Middle-earth against Sauron, and the Eresseans wanted to pitch in somehow to help their kin?

If there isn't a good reason for Eresseans to give a weapon (instead of a peaceful gift) then it would need to come to Numenor with the Edain settlers, somehow. But in that case it could have been passed down from Hithlum or Dorthonion.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
The Elves of the Houses of Finarfin and Fingolfin had closer relations with the Edain than did the Feanorians and Sindar, so it most likely was passed to Numenor by Noldor ultimately from Fingolfin or Finrod's realms. Finrod had closer relations with the Dwarves than did the other non-Feanorian princes.

But. Narsil could have passed through many hands, like the Dragon-Helm, so there are lots of options for how those particular Noldor got it. Feanorian works got into Thingol's hoard, and all the Noldorin houses/realms probably traded with each other at least to some extent. The Sindar might have traded Dwarven things to the Noldor on occasion.

What sort of story do we want to tell with Narsil?

If it is a gift from Eresseans, why a sword? Numenor was a peaceful place. Was it given at the time when the Numenoreans had started helping the Elves in Middle-earth against Sauron, and the Eresseans wanted to pitch in somehow to help their kin?

If there isn't a good reason for Eresseans to give a weapon (instead of a peaceful gift) then it would need to come to Numenor with the Edain settlers, somehow. But in that case it could have been passed down from Hithlum or Dorthonion.
So it shouldn’t be the Eresseans who give it.
 

MithLuin

Well-Known Member
It will depend on our 2nd Age storylines whether or not that will be an appropriate gift. And obviously, the 2nd Age is the murkiest and most lightly sketched, so it's fairly open-ended right now.

Possible ways Narsil can get to the Lords of Adunië:
  1. Gift from the King of Numenor to the Lord of Adunië
  2. Gift from the elves of Tol Eressëa to the Lord of Adunië
  3. Gift from Círdan the Shipwright to the Lord of Adunië
  4. Other?
We spent most of the time during the Session considering the first option, and thus the effort was to put Narsil into the hands of Elros. But, there are alternatives where Narsil does not have to come to the Lords of Adunië via Elros, so we can consider those options.


So far...I've not really heard any good story of what Narsil was used for during the First Age. IF we can come up with a good use for it, it will be easier to trace its future journey.

Narsil is made by Telchar of Nogrod, some time after the rising of the Sun. We have depicted Telchar working closely with Thingol to arm the elves of Doriath, and therefore the most obvious starting point for the sword is there. Should it be Mablung's sword? That would explain why it's not overly famous - Mablung didn't exactly have a lot of famous deeds.

But we also know that the two other items Telchar made (Angrist and the Dragon-helm) wind up far afield from Doriath, and pass through multiple hands. Why would Narsil be any different? Notably, both of those items end up in the hands of the Fëanoreans fairly early in their stories. So....why not Narsil, too? We know that none of the Sons of Fëanor had named blades (at least, no names are recorded). But why not make Narsil Maglor's sword in Beleriand? I realize that making Narsil an instrument of Kinslaying taints it, in a way, but, well...why not? Also explains why someone would think it should go to Elros at some point. And since Maglor doesn't die, he can renounce the blade at some point, giving it up voluntarily. Anyway, we could do something with that.
 

Faelivrin

Well-Known Member
Maglor's sword would be more plausible than Curufin's sword taken by Beren*, but... I don't know if Elros wants to "inherit" a sword that was used to kill the people of Doriath and the Havens, even as a decorative item he'll never use. I mean, I'd probably say no thanks.

*We'd need a reason for Beren not to take Curufin's sword... or alternatively, give him a reason to throw it away. Maybe Luthien can't incorporate a weapon that large into his transformation.
 
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amysrevenge

Well-Known Member
What if we took on the challenge in choreography to have Maglor do his kinslaying with his sword sheathed?
 

Faelivrin

Well-Known Member
Can he get away with that and still be "fulfilling the oath"?

But more importantly, I think it goes against the spirit of the Kinslaying stories if any son of Feanor doesn't have blood on his hand(s) (unless he died beforehand).
 
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MithLuin

Well-Known Member
Ah. In that case, we could give Narsil to, say, Caranthir, and have him be killed early on in the fight in Doriath - possibly meaning that Narsil isn't particularly guilty of any kinslaying.

Not sure how realistic that is, though. The citizens of Doriath aren't really prepared for this fight, and all of the Sons of Fëanor have been in multiple battles and survived at this point. Can't imagine any of them would die without getting his sword bloody here.

But I think that if we wanted to avoid that, then we should have them lose the sword earlier in the story.
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
If someone is using primarily a different weapon during a battle, it would not be that unusual for them to be killed before drawing it.
 

Faelivrin

Well-Known Member
Can it be a sword that was passed from the Feanorians to another group of Noldor, and came down to the Havens from there? It's possible that it was given to one of the people of Beor or Hador before the Fourth or Fifth Battle, and inherited in a manner similar to the Dragon-Helm. But not by the Mortal chieftains, by people whose line managed to escape with the sword to the Havens of Sirion. Possibly, Valandil of Andunie was descended from the person who had the sword, and it didn't come to Andunie through Elros' line at all.

Emeldir escaped from Dorthonion and fought her way out (leading other Beorian survivors) to Brethil. Some of the survivors (possibly including Emeldir and her daughter Hiril) got to Dor-lomin. What if she was wielding Narsil? She could have inherited it from her father, Beren I who was a descendant of Beor's second son. As far as I know, there's nothing to say Hiril didn't survive or have descendants. Tying Narsil to Emeldir would give it both an honorable lineage and an exciting story to tell (escape from Dorthonion) during the First Age.

Emeldir's father was 81 at the time of the Dagor Bragollach, but if he was still alive, given the desperate straights of his people at that time he might have fought and died. Another possibility is that Emeldir had a brother who fell in the Fourth Battle and Narsil was his sword. She had 2 older sisters but I don't know if she had any brothers.


More speculatively, Caranthir could give it to Haleth when trying to persuade her to come be his vassal (especially since her people hadn't allied directly with Elves and may have been poorly armed). Then it could be the sword of the chieftains of her folk. Getting it from Brethil to Numenor is more difficult, though, because the Folk of Haleth were basically wiped out and none (or practically none) of them made it to the Havens or Numeor.
 
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