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Elven Sword Evolution

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By Merlkir   |   Watch
Published: July 5, 2009
© 2009 - 2019 Merlkir
Another "evolution" diagram-thing. Of course I could put in some more links and maybe set dates for all of them, but that would be too much work. ;)

1. One of the first swords the Noldor made. Solid piece of metal for the blade and a wooden handle. The blade has a spine/ridge to make it stronger.
2. As the technology got better, the swords would get longer and the decorations nicer. Swirly floral ornaments for the hilt. Still has a ridge on the blade.
3. The hilt became less fancy and the blade is one piece with two ground-out fullers to make it lighter (this way it can be wider).
4. New technology - pattern welding for the blade. In a nutshell, you twist a few rods of iron with different features together and beat/weld them flat. That gives you the core of the blade - it makes the sword flexible and stress-resistant. To that core you weld two edges from hard steel that can take more punishment than iron and cut well. Then you grind a fuller - a groove in the whole blade to make it lighter. If you want to learn more about this, google pattern welding or damascene steel (even though pattern welding is not real damascene steel, the name is still used). The sword has a more straight bulky feel, the technology is still too new to go wild on the blade's shape. Floral ornaments on the hilt feel slightly heavier too.
5. Pattern welded blade with a more elven leaf-like shape. Still with a fairly wide fuller. The hilt is heavily ornamented with swirly floral shapes - trying to renew some of the older designs.
6. Probably a dwarf-made sword. The blade has a very elven shape, but the fuller is less deep and the sword feels a bit heavier. Dwarven hand is more obvious from the shape of the hilt. It still incorporates some leaf shapes though so the owner was probably an elf.
7. A "modern" elven sword. There could probably be one more link to this one from number 5, but I didn't have enough paper. ;)
The hilt has some elements of the movie Glamdring which I didn't realize when I drew it. I thought: "Look at that, that came ou really nice! Weird how easy that was." And obviously, it hit me later. It's not that bad though. ;)
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Comments61
anonymous's avatar
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Wintersoldier7020's avatar
Wintersoldier7020Hobbyist Photographer
Very nice!
Brothermonk's avatar
BrothermonkHobbyist General Artist
what paper did you use? or is this digital?
Merlkir's avatar
MerlkirProfessional Digital Artist
Real pencil, I think. Just a piece of sketchbook paper I found around the house, iirc.
Brothermonk's avatar
BrothermonkHobbyist General Artist
huh, I wish I had antiqued paper lying around 
Bramblestar15's avatar
Those all look so cool! 3 & 5 are my favorite of these, though they all look great.
Cerberus116's avatar
Very beautiful... nicely done.
spikedpsycho's avatar
The second looks like a good Valentines present.
PendragonMagicFairy's avatar
PendragonMagicFairyHobbyist General Artist
Beautiful drawn! My favourite is number five.
(sorry for my crappy English)
AmAndArInI's avatar
I featured your really interesting drawing in my journal
[link]
Merlkir's avatar
MerlkirProfessional Digital Artist
Ah, thanks!
Agacora's avatar
AgacoraStudent General Artist
Does this fit into the context of, perhaps, Middle Earth, or is this for your own created world? Either way those are some awesome swords.
Merlkir's avatar
MerlkirProfessional Digital Artist
It was made to fit Middle Earth.
Agacora's avatar
AgacoraStudent General Artist
Nice.
Surrealpunishment's avatar
SurrealpunishmentHobbyist Writer
Like it, my favorite is #2
tabby786's avatar
Hi, i love your work im designing a game and i need people like you to help me would you be intrested, if you are inbox me thanx
THORADONROHIRRIM's avatar
good work where do you research this elf style of sword? does Tolkien actually draw some swords? i don´t find it, but how do you think could be the "GURTHANG" (ANGLACHEL remade by dwarves and then is the sword that kill Melkor by hand of Turin)? and "ANGUIREL"? the original sword of Eöl; I draw one anguirel based on the movies principally but i,m not entirely sure and not have your drawing skill. Eöl dislikes the elves (but was one of the firsts elves), and was very good friend of dwarves of Nogrod and Belegost, so have to be a combination of the special style of dark elf Eöl (galvorn and flaming iron of a meteorite) and some techniques of dwarves. I´m think some kind of precious stones inspired by dwarves or not?. i will upload
Merlkir's avatar
MerlkirProfessional Digital Artist
The only information Tolkien gave on swords is that they're straight, some of them are leaf shaped and are often engraved with runes, or made of metal with a swirling pattern.

Do upload your drawings, I've never really tried drawing gurthang of anguirel. :)
THORADONROHIRRIM's avatar
done bro, im, new so check my version of anguirel :) i do gurthang in a few weeks, but your opninion could be useful.
Firewhisky-Black's avatar
Firewhisky-BlackHobbyist Artisan Crafter
This makes me want to watch Lord of the Rings. Awesome Job!
Sidran's avatar
This is awesome
Merlkir's avatar
MerlkirProfessional Digital Artist
Thank you!
Finnwulf's avatar
just amazing! *add to fav*
Merlkir's avatar
MerlkirProfessional Digital Artist
Thanks!
anonymous's avatar
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