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  1. #1
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    Sword trivia from the Hobbit

    Something that annoys me about modern sword movies, (Although maybe Kurasawa started it in the seven Samurai) is the driving of swords into the ground, basic sword training should teach you this will break the tempered tip of your blade, especially the stony ground round Erebor Thorin was ramming his blade into, (they may have been rubbish man made blades but you would think dwarves would be more respectful of metal craft especially if you break the tip of your sword all you have left is a cleaver which limits your options). I'm sure the martial artists who choreograph these movies must point this out as clearly there was one on the desolation of Smaug as he taught the Thranduil actor how to do a mean Chiburi and Noto after beheading the Uruk captive, (although maybe it was a stunt double as he performed it with his back to the camera), any Iai practitioners out there who recognised the style the Chiburi belonged too?,
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  2. #2
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    I just saw Desolation of Smaug last week and I'm still having a brain fuzzy. When did Thorin stick his sword into the ground?
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    On the climb up to the secret door
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  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Morthaur View Post
    Something that annoys me about modern sword movies, (Although maybe Kurasawa started it in the seven Samurai) is the driving of swords into the ground, basic sword training should teach you this will break the tempered tip of your blade, especially the stony ground round Erebor Thorin was ramming his blade into, (they may have been rubbish man made blades but you would think dwarves would be more respectful of metal craft especially if you break the tip of your sword all you have left is a cleaver which limits your options). I'm sure the martial artists who choreograph these movies must point this out as clearly there was one on the desolation of Smaug as he taught the Thranduil actor how to do a mean Chiburi and Noto after beheading the Uruk captive, (although maybe it was a stunt double as he performed it with his back to the camera), any Iai practitioners out there who recognised the style the Chiburi belonged too?,
    I agree with you and it has always annoyed me as well. I think much depends on which culture you're looking at though. Since there is some basis for it in European, or at least Northern European, culture. Diving your sword into the ground to issue a challenge for example. Its there too, though in mythological form, in the Arthurian legends. Again however I agree with you about the movie. Makes no practical sense, this is why scabbards were invented.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meluihel View Post
    I agree with you and it has always annoyed me as well. I think much depends on which culture you're looking at though. Since there is some basis for it in European, or at least Northern European, culture. Diving your sword into the ground to issue a challenge for example. Its there too, though in mythological form, in the Arthurian legends. Again however I agree with you about the movie. Makes no practical sense, this is why scabbards were invented.
    Well Im not sure about the driving your sword into ground when challenging was traditional or from Hollywood, I looked for some sort of European Knightly Sword Etiquette on the net but couldn't find anything, I suspect that European apprentices and squires who failed to look after their tools could expect quite a beating. For Japanese swords for their fine polishing they use cicada poo (fine micron abrasiveness) so ramming your blade into the ground is going to scratch it up quite badly at the very least, and once it gets scratched it will start rusting. Most of the blades in LoTR are "magic" (magic swords are everywhere!) I wonder if JRRT ever states that mithril was used for blades or just for armour, I recall that Eol used Galvorn for swords and armour if swords like Orcrist, Glamdring and Narsil where mithril that might explain their 7000+ year longevity.
    Last edited by Morthaur; Jan 05 2014 at 07:23 PM.
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  6. #6
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    The one that always got me was the metal screech sound when a sword is unsheathed or sheathed in movies. Swords don't sound like that!
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    I knew a few Iai practitioners who could get their swords to whistle whilst cutting, generally the more grooves or "Hi" in the blade the easier this was to achieve, I'm not aware of any film directors to pick up on this real noise rather than the scratchy scabbard noise.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nymphonic View Post
    The one that always got me was the metal screech sound when a sword is unsheathed or sheathed in movies. Swords don't sound like that!
    Yeah, I loved that metallic grinding sound my razor made when whetting on a leather strap, lol. The other one that drives me nuts is when they stab a sword into a brick wall between the stones and then use it as a step. You put 180lbs on a sword held only by its point and that sucker will either bend or snap clean off.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nymphonic View Post
    The one that always got me was the metal screech sound when a sword is unsheathed or sheathed in movies. Swords don't sound like that!
    Don't, just don't watch Once upon a Time...
    Mind, not the only thing about that show that got my goat...

    Didn't John Howe mention about the 'blade sound' when they were doing the LotR-movies? But test audiences were of the opinion that it didn't seem 'real' if the blades made no sound when drawn? Or why do I recall something like that from the extras? Wishful thinking?

  10. #10

    Unhappy

    Quote Originally Posted by Morthaur View Post
    Well Im not sure about the driving your sword into ground when challenging was traditional or from Hollywood, I looked for some sort of European Knightly Sword Etiquette on the net but couldn't find anything, I suspect that European apprentices and squires who failed to look after their tools could expect quite a beating. For Japanese swords for their fine polishing they use cicada poo (fine micron abrasiveness) so ramming your blade into the ground is going to scratch it up quite badly at the very least, and once it gets scratched it will start rusting. Most of the blades in LoTR are "magic" (magic swords are everywhere!) I wonder if JRRT ever states that mithril was used for blades or just for armour, I recall that Eol used Galvorn for swords and armour if swords like Orcrist, Glamdring and Narsil where mithril that might explain their 7000+ year longevity.
    See I wasn't thinking of knights. I was talking about Anglo-Saxon and Norse culture. Such as the Hólmganga, a formal duel almost the Norse. I agree in general though. Hollywood takes the idea to extremes. And most of the time the scene just looks silly anyway, especially when there is a scabbard hanging at the character's side.

    I have to disagree about magical swords being everywhere though. Just because a sword is special doesn't necessarily mean it is magical. Not that that concept does not have a precedent in history. The Norse and Anglo-Saxons believed their swords had a magical quality to them. They were pattern welded from two types of iron, normal iron and iron with higher amounts of carbon or what we would think of a steel, and this made swordss were the metals seemed to flow up the blades like smoke, poison or even water. You ended up with swords that looked like this.



    They believed that the smiths used their own kind of magics when creating the weapons.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morthaur View Post
    I knew a few Iai practitioners who could get their swords to whistle whilst cutting, generally the more grooves or "Hi" in the blade the easier this was to achieve, I'm not aware of any film directors to pick up on this real noise rather than the scratchy scabbard noise.
    So swords Shing Shing for real? Yay!
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  12. #12
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    Well I was gilding the lily when I said "magic swords are everywhere", that's a very interesting folding pattern on your blade (they look like little swastikas), I thought it might be damask at first, I assume it a contemporary work as its a pattern that was not historically used in Japanese blades.
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  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Morthaur View Post
    Well I was gilding the lily when I said "magic swords are everywhere", that's a very interesting folding pattern on your blade (they look like little swastikas), I thought it might be damask at first, I assume it a contemporary work as its a pattern that was not historically used in Japanese blades.
    A nice article on pattern-welding can be found at http://www.vikingsword.com/serpent.html

  14. #14
    The answer is, never let Hollywood be our history teacher in anything.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by gonnaplaynow View Post
    The answer is, never let Hollywood be our history teacher in anything.
    What are movies.

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  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by gonnaplaynow View Post
    The answer is, never let Hollywood be our history teacher in anything.
    Exactly. I love a good movies. Or even a good tv show. Rome and the Tudors were good shows and I am looking forward to the second season of Vikings this spring. No matter how much I love them though I try not to take them as history, I take them for what they are a good story. If I want to know what really happened I go back to the original sources or I pick up a book by an author I like.

    The problem with movies is that you actually see what's going on. You can read a fictional book, even one set within history, and you know its just a story. But we tend to believe what we see with our eyes. So seeing historical events on a film screen or your tv means you are more likely to believe what they are showing you, even if parts of it happen to be wrong.

 

 

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