Swords clearly have a lot of importance in the Witcher.
The main character Geralt of Rivia has two of them strapped to his back (or one, if he’s Henry Cavill)--and besides that, most of the other folks you meet are carrying some sort of weapon (which probably says something about Geralt, but we're not ones to judge).
Swords were, at the time, weapons of prestige, and a swordsman’s--especially a Witcher’s--entire reputation could depend on the sword at his side. Swords had their own names, and would accumulate their own legend over time.
So what are the legendary blades in the Witcher?
The Witcher's Steel Sword
One of two iconic blades from the game, the Steel sword is supposedly the “sword for men”--however, it’s more likely that it is simply a sword for basic defense, from monsters and men alike. When asked whether he carries one sword for monsters, and one for men, Geralt laconically replies “They’re both for monsters.” Perhaps he means some creatures require silver, while others require iron, or perhaps he’s insinuating that some men are monstrous... The steel sword is typically a one-and-a-half hand, meaning it can be wielded by one or two hands when necessary, and in the games you possess many steel blades, but if you’re looking for the poster-child of the steel swords, check out our foam replica.
"They're both for monsters."
The Witcher Silver Sword
Possibly the most recognizable sword from the games, thanks to its beautiful runic inscriptions, the Silver Sword is a must for any Witcher when hunting monsters. However, the blade is not silver all the way through--that would be cost-ineffective and far too soft--but it is silver coated, which is necessary for wounding many kinds of monsters and magical creatures: wraiths, vampires, werewolves, etc. Also a one-and-a-half handed blade, the silver sword is in fact, not good in combat against other swords; contact with another blade would damage the soft silver edge, which is why it is meant exclusively for monsters. Our foam replica has even softer edges, and yet is perfectly suited for all forms of LARP combat.
A silver sword destined for Ciri, whose nickname is Zi’rael, meaning The Swallow in Elder Speech. In the books, the theme of Destiny runs throughout, despite Geralt’s defiant disbelief in it, and Zirael is no exception: decorated with flowers and a tower, which harkens to Ciri’s ultimate fate. In the books, Ciri is gifted the gnomish-forged sword for a fight against her nemesis, Leo Bonhart; in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, Geralt acquires it from Master Ort as a gift for Ciri, who is the first and only girl to be trained as a Witcher (though she never did the Trial of Grasses). Either way, the sword is clearly intended for her, their fates intertwined. It was a clear choice for Calimacil to replicate, with its beautiful runic inscription and recognizable, angular handle.
Olgierd von Everec's Sword
The legendary steel sword of Olgierd von Everec, from the Heart of Stone expansion of The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt, and one of the few curved blades ever seen in the games: a beautiful saber. Depending on the choices you make, Geralt can receive the sword at the end for his own use. The blade is a family heirloom of the von Everecs, but is named for Olgierd’s wife, Iris, who he loved desperately as a young man, and went to great lengths to marry: however, the cost was high, and once he had his beloved, he sadly lost the ability to feel love, his heart slowly turning to stone. The blade itself seems to charge up with energy, and release it in powerful strikes. We chose to replicate this blade because of its beauty and uniqueness in the games.
The Sword of the Wild Hunt
The evil looking blade of the leader of the Wild Hunt himself, Eredin Bréacc Glas, Eredin’s sword is as ruthless as its owner. Eredin and the Wild Hunt chases Ciri in both the books and the games, seeking to use her power for his own ends. The Wild Hunt was originally created by a group of elves from another realm, called the Aen Elle. Eredin was in charge of leading them into other worlds to capture and bring back slaves, a task which he relished. The terrifying look of the Wild Hunt, described as a spectral cavalcade, is likely Eredin’s doing. The huge two handed blade has several jagged sections, meant to hook and tear enemies. In the games, Geralt can win a sword from Eredin in their final battle, called Hav’caaren, however, it is not the same as the iconic one he carries throughout the game: we chose to replicate the classic one.
Zoltan Chivay's Sword
A type of dwarven steel blade gifted to Geralt in the books by his dwarven friend, Zoltan Chivay, a swarthy and foul-mouthed fighter. The one given to Geralt is inscribed with runes in dwarvish, which roughly translate to “Death to the Whoresons.” Zoltan explains to Geralt that most swords have a hard core, and soft edges, so that they can be sharpened more easily--however, they also lose their edge just as fast. These dwarven blades, however, use a special method, and instead have a soft core with hard edges, which always stay sharp. While not seen in The Wild Hunt, CD Projekt Red gives a nod to the legendary Sihil with a card in Thronebreaker and Gwent.
"Death to the Whoresons!" is inscribed on this dwarvish blade.
The Lady of the Lake's Sword
From The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt, Aerondight is a silver sword that can be bestowed upon Geralt by none other than The Lady of the Lake. A myth originally from the King Arthur Legend, the Lady of the Lake is thematically present throughout the book series: a mysterious character from the future lives in a tower on a lake, studying the Witcher myths and waiting for Ciri to appear, and Ciri herself is mistaken for The Lady of the Lake by a knight errant. In the games, Geralt acquires this sword in The Witcher 1, and then loses it in the opening sequence of The Witcher 2, only to finally be reunited with it in an expansion of The Witcher 3: Blood and Wine, where the Lady of the Lake gives Geralt the sword once more. It’s power increases over time, making it one of the most deadly weapons in the game.
Which sword will you claim to continue the legend?
--article by Nora Evett
written July 8th, 2021