I seem to remember something about Eragon's mother (the Black Hand) killing twelve enemies with only the knowledge of the spell "heal". How did she do this?

I can't find any quotes and I can't even remember which book it was mentioned in!

1 Answer 1


This appears to be the relevant quote from the third book in the cycle.

"She healed them of their fear and their hate and all things that drive a man to kill. And then while they stood grinning at each other like idiot sheep, she went up to the men and cut their throats.... Are you feeling well Eragon? you are as pale as a corpse."

Brisingr, Pp 286

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    Why the fuss? if you can "heal" something from loyalty, then you also can "heal" them from breathing, because then the word only means "remove". Of course, this makes no sense at all. Aug 16, 2017 at 13:43
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    I updated the answer with the direct quote.
    – Scath
    Aug 16, 2017 at 13:52
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    @Florian - The Ancient Language is an magically, artificially created interface with the real way of doing magic (thought). In the first book, Brom mentions that it would be possible for a very skilled magic user to form a gem with the word for water, because the connection between the two would be clear to them. Similarly, because the Black Hand saw violence as a malady, she was able to use the word for "heal" to cure it.
    – Adamant
    Aug 16, 2017 at 16:41
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    Now, obviously the words used aren't irrelevant, because Eragon's little grammar mistake had some serious consequences. But the Ancient Language clearly (a) has enough latitude to allow one word to do many different things, depending on the intentions of the user (for example, Brisingr produces many kinds of fire, in many different manners). Alternately, it could very well be that (b) the word for healing in the Ancient Language simply includes the concept of removing negative emotions.
    – Adamant
    Aug 16, 2017 at 16:46
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    In fact, the biggest issues seem to occur when someone tries to be extremely precise with little clear idea of what they want (such as Eragon's blessing). Then they get exactly what they ask for, in whatever subtle manner that phrase means in the Ancient Language.
    – Adamant
    Aug 16, 2017 at 16:49

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