Since the founding of Darksword Armory, the swords in our catalog have had multiple inspirations. Our swords are based on examples from literature, myth, art, and film – including our popular Lord of the Rings swords. Many more of our swords are based on surviving historical artifacts; Darksword founder Eyal Azerad has traveled to museums all over the world in order to examine swords from different eras in history, and these were replicated in our forge to exacting specifications. Many of our most popular designs, though, have been our fantasy designs, and for over a decade these unique, coveted pieces have been based on the vision of artist Terry Maranda.
Terry Maranda is an artist, graphic designer, and illustrator. Since the early 2000’s he has worked in a variety of artistic roles including video game design and role-playing game illustration, but the role that is closest to our heart is the role of weapon designer for Darksword Armory. Since 2008 Terry has sketched original and fantasy-inspired swords and knives which we have endeavored to capture in steel, and these designs have been some of Darksword Armory’s most sought-after. While Terry has a successful career outside of his role at Darksword, we are still thrilled to work with him as a weapons designer here at Darksword Armory. The Vindaaris is the latest of Terry’s works of art that we have brought to life, and it is truly a wonder to behold.
The inspiration for the Vindaaris was twofold. First, it was inspired by the Norse myths of the light elves that allied themselves with the gods. Hailing from the ancient world of Alfheim, these elves and their weapons would be instrumental in the final battle against evil. The designer’s description references this:
In the last days of the age of Gods, the All-Father Odin, summoned his allies to his throne. Among those were the glorious and enigmatic light elves from Alfheim, they and their god ruler Fryer swore their arms to the All-Father for the final battle for Midgard. These swords are among those laid at Odin’s throne, forged for the end times of Ragnarok.
The inscription in Nordic runes reads, “Honor, Loyalty, Disgrace, Vengeance” – common themes from Vikings of legend and myth.
The other source is, as many of our swords, is the work of J.R.R Tolkien. The elves of light in Tolkien’ work made many mighty swords, and this fantasy blade more greatly resembles a sword you would see on the hip of an elf-lord than a Viking. The Tolkien “heritage” of the design is honored in an alternative inscription made in the “Tengwar” language Tolkien invented for his elves of Middle-Earth on a limited edition version of the Vindaaris. On just 50 of the Vindaaris swords that were made the elven inscription on the blade is from the Volsung saga, an epic tale of Viking lore, and reads: “Better to fight and fall than live without hope.” Thus, from both sources of inspiration, this would be considered an “elven” blade.
The sword itself is a powerful two handed weapon. The unique blade is made from 5160 steel, flowing effortlessly to the flared section unlike anything else in our catalog. The curved guard is expertly sculpted, showing cunning lines and elegant script. The leather-wrapped handle hides a robust tang, and the graceful pommel reflects the weapon’s elven heritage. Make no mistake, as beautiful as this sword is it is still, in fact, a very real weapon.
We at Darksword Armory our proud of our collaboration with Terry Maranda, and invite you to own a piece of his legacy.
Dean Marino Limited Edition Tengwar Dialect Beleriand Dialect