Tolkien's elves forged some magical weapons like Sting, Orcrist, Glamdring (a sword that could kill a Balrog), and maybe even Anduril. Magical weapons are considered the most strong, durable, and high-quality weapons a fighter can get.

The dwarves were masters of the forge, great miners and smiths, and forged weapons from steel and mithril. But could the dwarves forge magical weapons or superb weapons that equal the Elves' magical weapons?


1 Answer 1


Dwarves have forged weapons of the same renown

I'm sure Tolkien would have probably rejected such a classification system, but if you consider the weapons named in your question to be "magical", than there are Dwarf works that would be "magical" as well.

Namely the works of the dwarf smith Telchar of the Nogrod, who actually created one of the items in your list:

Narsil, the "Blade that was Broken", wielded by Elendil, Isildur, and then later reforged and used by Aragorn

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.’
The Lord of the Rings - Book III, Chapter 6 - "The King of the Golden Hall"

Angrist, the knife Beren uses to cut the Silmaril out of Morgoth's crown

Then Lúthien rising forbade the slaying of Curufin; but Beren despoiled him of his gear and weapons, and took his knife, Angrist. That knife was made by Telchar of Nogrod, and hung sheathless by his side; iron it would cleave as if it were green wood.


As a dead beast Beren lay upon the ground; but Lúthien touching him with her hand aroused him, and he cast aside the wolf-hame. Then he drew forth the knife Angrist; and from the iron claws that held it he cut a Silmaril.
The Silmarillion - Chapter 19 - "Of Beren and Luthien"

The Dragon-helm of Dor-lómin, the Helm that Turin wears

The Helm of Hador was given into Thingol’s hands. That helm was made of grey steel adorned with gold, and on it were graven runes of victory. A power was in it that guarded any who wore it from wound or death, for the sword that hewed it was broken, and the dart that smote it sprang aside. It was wrought by Telchar, the smith of Nogrod, whose works were renowned. It had a visor (after the manner of those that the Dwarves used in their forges for the shielding of their eyes), and the face of one that wore it struck fear into the hearts of all beholders, but was itself guarded from dart and fire. Upon its crest was set in defiance a gilded image of the head of Glaurung the dragon; for it had been made soon after he first issued from the gates of Morgoth. Often Hador, and Galdor after him, had borne it in war; and the hearts of the host of Hithlum were uplifted when they saw it towering high amid the battle, and they cried: ‘Of more worth is the Dragon of Dor-lómin than the gold-worm of Angband!’

But in truth this helm had not been made for Men, but for Azaghâl Lord of Belegost, he who was slain by Glaurung in the Year of Lamentation. It was given by Azaghâl to Maedhros, as guerdon for the saving of his life and treasure, when Azaghâl was waylaid by Orcs upon the Dwarf-road in East Beleriand. Maedhros afterwards sent it as a gift to Fingon, with whom he often exchanged tokens of friendship, remembering how Fingon had driven Glaurung back to Ang-band. But in all Hithlum no head and shoulders were found stout enough to bear the dwarf-helm with ease, save those of Hador and his son Galdor. Fingon therefore gave it to Hador, when he received the lordship of Dor-lómin. By ill-fortune Galdor did not wear it when he defended Eithel Sirion, for the assault was sudden, and he ran barehead to the walls, and an orc-arrow pierced his eye. But Húrin did not wear the Dragon-helm with ease, and in any case he would not use it, for he said: ‘I would rather look on my foes with my true face.’ Nonetheless he accounted the helm among the greatest heirlooms of his house.
"Narn i Chîn Húrin" - "The Departure of Túrin" (The version in Unfinished Tales has both paragraphs. The version in The Children of Hurin only has the first.)

"Tis Telchar's work | of worth untold,
its wearer warded | from wound or magic,
from glaive guarded | or gleaming axe.
Now Hurin's helm | hoard till manhood
to battle bids thee, | then bravely don it,
go wear it well!" |
"The Lay of the Children of Hurin" - Second Version, Canto II "Turin's Fostering" - lines 678-682

Telchar has been said to be greater than all the Dwarven smiths of Belegost, though both him and his teacher Gamil Zirak had not reached the skill of Fëanor

Therefore Thingol bethought [him] of arms, which before his folk had not needed, and these at first the Naugrim smithied for him. For they were greatly skilled in such work, though none among them surpassed the craftsmen of Nogrod, of whom Telchar the Smith was the greatest in renown.
"The Grey Annals" - VY 1330 - §28

Thingol had in Menegroth deep armouries filled with great wealth of weapons: metal wrought like fishes’ mail and shining like water in the moon; swords and axes, shields and helms, wrought by Telchar himself or by his master Gamil Zirak the old, or by elven-wrights more skilful still. For some things he had received in gift that came out of Valinor and were wrought by Fëanor in his mastery, than whom no craftsman was greater in all the days of the world.
"Narn i Chîn Húrin" - "The Departure of Túrin"

  • Note: Narsil was later reforged by the Elves, yeah?
    – Lexible
    Commented Jan 26 at 17:11
  • 3
    "wrought by Telchar himself or by his master Gamil Zirak the old, or by elven-wrights more skilful still" - sounds like even the greater Dwarven smiths were lesser than the Elves, so the answer should be "no, Dwarves couldn't forge weapons as well as Elves"
    – Eli Iser
    Commented Jan 26 at 19:22
  • 10
    @EliIser No, it just sounds like there existed elven-wrights better than Telchar or Gamil Zirak, not that all elven-wrights were.
    – chepner
    Commented Jan 26 at 21:39
  • 1
    @Lexible - Yes, and it was given a new name during the reforging. Narsil refers to the original sword forged by Telchar, and Andúril refers to the sword reforged by the elven smiths of Rivendell.
    – ibid
    Commented Jan 27 at 23:34
  • (To be clear +1 :)
    – Lexible
    Commented Jan 28 at 3:07

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