In any version, is Captain America’s shield made with vibranium stolen from Wakanda? I saw this idea on Facebook and was curious about its veracity.

  • 1
    To clarify - are you looking for an MCU answer, a comics answer, or are either acceptable?
    – RDFozz
    Mar 5, 2018 at 22:25
  • Either would be acceptable. Mar 6, 2018 at 14:07

2 Answers 2


We don't know. The closest we ever really get to discovering its origins is from this panel in the official tie-in comic to the MCU film Captain America: The First Avenger. Stark says that his researchers

"discovered [the vibranium sample] in Deepest Africa".

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Quite whether they discovered it through trading with Wakanda, found a small piece of the vibranium meteor outside Wakandan territory or stole it (noting that this has occurred on several occasions) isn't confirmed.

  • It's usually established that the meteor is only in Wakanda, and they don't trade it. So theft is the only remaining (and simplest) option.
    – OrangeDog
    Mar 5, 2018 at 13:49
  • 2
    @orangedog - It's been established in the comics that there were fragments sold to fund Wakandan projects. Also, some pieces of the meteor landed elsewhere, suggesting that it wasn't a unitary lump
    – Valorum
    Mar 5, 2018 at 14:49

Meteors very rarely land in a single discrete lump with no breakup whatsoever. There are absolutely other sources of "Wakandan" vibranium in the world, albeit small ones, at least in the comics. If you assume that Wakanda was already well able to protect itself and its borders by the 1940s, robbery is unlikely.

Trading a small amount is possible - another possibility is Stark finding a small deposit outside of Wakanda, one that the country had not found and retrieved.

But the biggest clue may be the name - If Stark claims to have "discovered" the metal, does that mean HE named it? Did Wakanda have some other name for it, which became disused when the new term get used across the world?

It may be safer to guess that Stark traded for the small amount, and got the name from the people with which he traded.

  • Regarding your first point, I could imagine a vibranium meteor resisting the forces that normally break up those of other materials. It isn't as unlikely as it would be in real life.
    – Harris
    Mar 13, 2018 at 21:06
  • Definitely agree with you that this is the likeliest theory.
    – Bob
    Mar 14, 2018 at 15:11

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