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Author Topic: "Real world" magic weapons  (Read 8512 times)

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Offline MoonHunter

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"Real world" magic weapons
« on: May 05, 2005, 01:54:00 PM »
Or perhaps the title of the thread should be "magic weapons in the real world".  What mythic weapons, or weapons that approach myth, could be real magic items?

The rock or fossilized stick used to commit the first murder.

The Spear of Longinus

The Sword of Simon Peter. The first weapon to draw blood in the name of Christ (when he cut the ear off of a Roman soldier who came to arrest Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane), the first in a very long line.

Excaliber

"Grasscutter". The sword of Amaterasu, goddess of the sun. This elaborate blade has never actually cut anyone (as far as I know, but it does look d**n unwieldy) but it is the physical representation of the authority of the Japanese imperial line.

A large-ish nail. Looks about 2000 years old.

Yi the Archer's bow.

David's Sling.

Joshua's Horn

The Whip that Scourged Jesus

Gae Bolg, the spear of Cucchulain.

Robin Hood's Bow

William Tell's Crossbow

Lizzie Borden's Axe

Pistol used to kill Lincoln

The rifle used to shoot President Kennedy.

A rope used by Judge Roy Bean, the hanging judge.

The soldier's weapon that first discharged starting the massacre at Wounded Knee.

The Enola Gay, the B-29 that dropped the A-bomb on Hiroshima or "Little Boy", the bomb itself.

The axe Cromwell used to kill King Charles.

The Dagger of Brutus. Treason from an unexpected quarter.

Durendal. The sword of Lord Roland, Marquis of Brittany and greatest paladin in terrestrial history. Also, Hauteclaire (aka "Highbright"), the sword of Roland's companion Oliver and, if memory serves, formerly belonging to Achilles.

The club of Hercules. Big wooden log, goes great with lion skin underoos.

The Sword of General Kwan. The first Kwan Dao (bigass Chinese halberd, cuts through horses).


Questionables:
Balmung, Sigfried's sword.
Durendal, Roland's sword
Gungnir, Odin's Spear
The Shadow's .45s
Captain America's Shield

This should probably be moved to the idea scroll area eventually
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Offline Scrasamax

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"Real world" magic weapons
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2005, 03:33:15 PM »
General Patton's Pearl handled revolvers
General Custer's Saber


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Offline CaptainPenguin

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"Real world" magic weapons
« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2005, 07:05:34 PM »
Crocea Mors ("The Golden Death"), Gaius Julius Caesar's legendary sword

The sword of Shinra (a Korean hero)

Gluskap's bone necklace

By the way, the Japanese for Grasscutter is Kusanagi.
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Offline MoonHunter

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"Real world" magic weapons
« Reply #3 on: May 13, 2005, 12:50:53 PM »
Ring of Solomon
    A weapon, only if you are a demon.

Staff of Moses
    A magic item that can be used as a weapon. Supposedly kept in three pieces in Ethiopia.

Athame of Levi
    A magic item which should not be used as a weapon

Athame of Crowley
    A magic item that has been used as a weapon.

Chains from the original Temple of Set in San Francisco, CA, USA

Any number of Winchester Rifles used by men of the Pacific Railway to massacre Buffalo and Indians.

Mauser of the Commanding officer at Auschwitz.

It is a pity that most of the mythical weapons in "modern times" are mostly used for Evil.
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Offline Cheka Man

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"Real world" magic weapons
« Reply #4 on: May 13, 2005, 07:45:39 PM »
Hitler's pistol

Genghis Khan's sword

The sword of the First Crusader,Raymond of Toulouse

Offline Dragonlordmax

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"Real world" magic weapons
« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2005, 01:14:50 PM »
The rifle that fired the "Shot heard round the World" at Lexington.

The rope used to hang the convicted at Nuremberg.

The machine gun from the Red Baron's airplane.
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Offline Michael Jotne Slayer

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"Real world" magic weapons
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2005, 07:25:52 PM »
I am not sure if this post fits in here Moon, tell if I should move it to a better spot. I think this might be relevant though.
What makes a weapon "magic"?
People really belived that some weapons were magical(some still do),
what is required of a weapon before it can be considered magic?
If you rule out the those who have aquired a certain amount of fame because they belonged to someone legendary like Hitler or Julius.
It could be the materials it was made of, method of production, producers, decoration, consecration, possesion, accumulation of power, ritual function, martial practise.

Materials
Many traditional weapons are said to derive power from having been made of sacred materials.  Such materials in their natural state have affinity with the divine, so objects made from them are themselves sacred.  Examples: Keris blades of the Indonesian archipelago made from meteorite iron, thought to have been sent by the gods; rhinoceros horns as hilts for Arabian janbiyya, believed to have healing and aphrodisiac properties.

Method of Production
The act of making a weapon itself -- particularly the forging process for metal bladed weapons -- is thought to be a magical process, transmuting the essential nature of the materials such that they acquire new properties not found in their natural state.  We find this often taking place in a forging environment where the production is encoded in ritual processes.  Example: The forging of Japanese
katana blades, in which the smith dons a priest's robes and makes numerous invocation to Shinto dieties.


We also often find that the method of production creates a visible pattern in the finished product, which is itself given specific supernatural attributes.  Examples: Hamon on Japanese katana, pamor on keris, wootz patterns on Persian shamshir.

Producers
Many cultures regarded weaponmakers and blacksmiths to be imbued with magical power through their craft; their objects therefore inherit some of that power.  Examples: Viking swords; West African swords.

Decoration
Empowering weapons through the application of spiritually significant artwork.  This is very common throughout history, with everything from full figural artwork (Example: Keris hilts from Bali) to talimanic markings (Example: Beduh magic squares on Middle Eastern swords) to prayers and religious inscriptions (Example: Biblical and other Christian mottoes on European swords).  


There are a number of cases in which the original meaning of such decoration is lost but the practice remains.  Examples: Cho on Nepali khukuri; ganja on keris; swivels on Hindustani sword and dagger pommels.


In other cases certain decorative objects thought to impart power are added.  Examples: Boar's tusks on Nias balato scabbards; tiger jaws to Kachin ninjthu; gemstones on various European daggers.


With a few rare examples, the overall shape of the weapon itself is thought to be talismanic, eg. the Achinese rencong, believed to spell out the Islamic Arabic invocation bismillah 'in the name of God'.


Consecration
Making weapons sacred through the blessing of ritual specialists.  Example: Hindustani weapons undergoing shastra-puja; Siamese weapons in krabi-krabong practice.


Possession
Many cultures had rituals to animate weapons, calling spirits or other entities to reside in the weapons themselves.  Examples: Hantu residing in keris.


Accumulation of Power
Some weapons were thought to absorb the strength and heroism of their previous owners, and impart those virtures onto their present owners.  Examples: Viking and Medieval European swords.  Others could be used to extend and focus a user's personal energy to cultivate spiritual awareness.  Example: Chinese jian in Taijiquan and other internal martial arts.


Ritual Function
Certain weapons are considered powerful because they are implements in specific rituals.  Examples: Tomahawk peace pipes among many Native American tribes; sacrificial knives of all kinds; fraternal swords in Europe and America.


Martial Practice

For some, ordinary weapons can take on ritual importance through the practice of marital arts, which foster altered states of spiritual consciousness.  Examples: Bolos in certain Filipino martial arts; rapiers and swords in certain Renaissance schools of fencing.

Tell me if this should have it's own thread or if it can stay here.

Sincerely, Mike.
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Offline MoonHunter

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"Real world" magic weapons
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2005, 08:52:39 AM »
Actually take a copy of this and make it its own little article. Leave that part in here.  

These items evolved into magical items, rather than being made as one. Nobody spent time and effort making them magical (that we know of), but they became magical because of the circumstances they were used in.

These items are magical because they are part of the Mythic of the world... that belief in the importance of the events they were involved in... the emotion of all people who know of the event generates... is enough to change the world a bit... the very nature of the items being empowered by this... making them special.

Belief+emotion = change in the world is a basic tennant of magic. All the training a magical user takes on allows them to better/ harness focus that belief and emotion to produce targeted results. The emotions and beliefs of a crowd are powerful, but unfocused. Yet they can be effective in altering the world (or the way people see the world).

So these are magic items because they are mythic. Were some of these items "magical" before they became part of the Legendary? No. However, now they are part of the mythic and legendary and now people subscribe to them special powers (usually just being more effective at doing what they were designed to do).

This process dovetails with another thread we had.
Heroic, but non-magical, items
http://www.rpgcitadel.com/guild/index.php?topic=1460.0
MoonHunter
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