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Things of Middle-earth


Type: Weapons

Meaning: flame of the west

Other Names:
Narsil (prior to its reforging)
Sword of Elendil
Flame of the West
Sword that was Broken
Blade that was Broken


The sword of Aragorn, reforged before the Quest of the Ring from the shards of Elendil's sword, Narsil, which shattered at his death.
'From the ruin of the Gladden Fields, where Isildur perished, three men only came ever back.... One of these was Ohtar, the esquire of Isildur, who bore the shards of the sword of Elendil.... But Narsil was broken and its light extinguished....'

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 2, Ch 2, The Council of Elrond

The Sword of Elendil was forged anew by Elvish smiths, and on its blade was traced a device of seven stars set between the crescent Moon and the rayed Sun, and about them was written many runes; for Aragorn son of Arathorn was going to war upon the marches of Mordor. Very bright was that sword when it was made whole again; the light of the sun shone redly in it, and the light of the moon shone cold, and its edge was hard and keen. And Aragorn gave it a new name and called it Andúril, Flame of the West.

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 2, Ch 3, The Ring Goes South

[Galadriel] gave [Aragorn] a sheath that had been made to fit his sword. It was overlaid with a tracery of flowers and leaves wrought of silver and gold, and on it were set in elven runes formed of many gems the name Andúril and the lineage of the sword.

'The blade that is drawn from this sheath shall not be stained or broken even in defeat,' she said.

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 2, Ch 8, Farewell to Lórien

But even as they retreated... a huge orc-chieftain... leaped into the chamber.... But even as the orc... swept out his scimitar, Andúril came down upon his helm. There was a flash like flame and the helm burst asunder. The orc fell with cloven head.

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 2, Ch 5, The Bridge of Khazad-dûm

Aragorn threw back his cloak. The elven-sheath glittered as he grasped it, and the bright blade of Andúril shone like a sudden flame as he swept it out. 'Elendil!' he cried. 'I am Aragorn son of Arathorn and am called Elessar, the Elfstone, Dúnadan, the heir of Isildur Elendil's son of Gondor. Here is the Sword that was Broken and is forged again! Will you aid me or thwart me? Choose swiftly!'

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 2, The Riders of Rohan

'You... are needed. The light of Andúril must now be uncovered in the battle for which it has so long waited. There is war in Rohan....'

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 5, The White Rider

'Here I must bid you lay aside your weapons before you enter.'....

Aragorn stood a while hesitating. 'It is not my will,' he said, 'to put aside my sword or to deliver Andúril to the hand of any other man.'.... 'And I would do as the master of the house bade me.... if I bore now any sword but Andúril.'

'Whatever its name may be,' said Háma, 'here you shall lay it, if you would not fight alone against all the men in Edoras.'....

Slowly Aragorn unbuckled his belt and himself set his sword upright against the wall. 'Here I set it,' he said; 'but I command you not to touch it, nor to permit any other to lay hand on it. In this Elvish sheath dwells the Blade that was Broken and has been made again. Telchar first wrought it in the deeps of time. Death shall come to any man that draws Elendil's sword save Elendil's heir.'....

'Well,' said Gimli, 'if it has Andúril to keep it company, my axe may stay here, too, without shame'....

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 6, The King of the Golden Hall

'Gúthwinë!' cried Éomer. 'Gúthwinë for the Mark!'

'Andúril!' cried Aragorn. 'Andúril for the Dúnedain!'

Charging from the side, they hurled themselves upon the wild men. Andúril rose and fell, gleaming with white fire. A shout went up from wall and tower: 'Andúril! Andúril goes to war. The Blade that was Broken shines again!'....

Three times Aragorn and Éomer rallied them, and three times Andúril flamed in a desperate charge that drove the enemy from the wall....

A broad stairway climbed from the Deep up to the Rock and the rear-gate of the Hornburg. Near the bottom stood Aragorn. In his hand still Andúril gleamed, and the terror of the sword for a while held back the enemy, as one by one all who could gain the stair passed up towards the gate.

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 7, Helm's Deep

But before all went Aragorn with the Flame of the West, Andúril like a new fire kindled, Narsil re-forged as deadly as of old: and upon his brow was the Star of Elendil.

The Return of the King, LoTR Book 5, Ch 6, The Battle of the Pelennor Fields

Then he drew Andúril and held it up glittering in the sun. 'You shall not be sheathed again until the last battle is fought,' he said.

The Return of the King, LoTR Book 5, Ch 9, The Last Debate

andúnë 'sunset, west' in Andúnië, to which corresponds in Sindarin annûn, cf. Annúminas, and Henneth Annûn 'window of the sunset' in Ithilien. The ancient root of these words, ndu, meaning 'down, from on high', appears also in Quenya númen 'the way of the sunset, west' and in Sindarin dûn 'west', cf. Dúnedain, Adûnaic adûn in Adûnakhôr, Anadûnê was a loan from Eldarin speech....

ril 'brilliance' in Idril, Silmaril; also in Andúril (the sword of Aragorn) and in mithril (Moria-silver). Idril's name in Quenya form was Itarillë (or Itarildë), from a stem ita- 'sparkle'.

The Silmarillion, Appendix: Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names

For information about the origins of the sword, see the entry for Narsil.

Contributors: Lyllyn 11.21.03
Elena Tiriel 21Jun04, 6Jul04, 7Jan08

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