The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Dates
Forged in the First Age some time between c.I 126 and I 510
Rediscovered by Thorin in May or June III 2941
Entombed1 with Thorin late III 2941
Origins
Forged in Gondolin
Meaning
'Orc- (or Goblin-) cleaver'
Other Names

Indexes:

About this entry:

  • Updated 4 February 2001
  • Updates planned: 2

Orcrist

The sword of Thorin Oakenshield

Encyclopedia of Arda Timeline
Years of the Trees First Age Second Age Third Age Fourth Age and Beyond

The sword of Thorin Oakenshield, discovered by him in a troll-hoard on his journey to Erebor, and buried with him after his death in the Battle of Five Armies.


Notes

1

Exactly what happened to Orcrist at Thorin's funeral isn't completely clear. The Hobbit tells us that the sword was placed by Thranduil 'upon his tomb', and that it 'gleamed ever in the dark if foes approached' (The Hobbit 18, The Return Journey). These quotes seem to suggest that Orcrist wasn't actually buried with Thorin, but instead just laid on his tomb.

In The Lord of the Rings, there's a suggestion that this may have changed. We are told there that Orcrist '...lay now upon the breast of Thorin...' (The Fellowship of the Ring II 3, The Ring Goes South). This seems to suggest that the sword was actually within Thorin's tomb, and not just placed on it, though this text is admittedly ambiguous.

See also...

Biter, Goblin-cleaver

For acknowledgements and references, see the Disclaimer & Bibliography page.

Website services kindly sponsored by Axiom Software Ltd.

Original content © copyright Mark Fisher 1998, 2001. All rights reserved. For conditions of reuse, see the Site FAQ.