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Justice: The Sword that is Just a Sword?


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We all now know that the Dragon scabbard sword that Rand finds is Justice, the sword of Artur Hawkwing. Outside of it having one helluva good story to tell, does the sword have any other particular importance? I tend to think not, but given the way Rand seems to give it Special significance, I do wonder a bit.

 

We Know this from descriptions in the book:

-Power Wrought

-Black Scabbard with a red and gold enameled dragon on it

-Rand recognized the sword as that of Justice, Artur Hawkwing's sword from tGH

 

Outside of a few mentions in the KC, does this sword do anything special that we know of? Any evidence to say what it does/is needed for? I'm really hoping its not an angreal or sa'angreal, I think that would be a bit cheap, but maybe a ter'angreal?

 

Or is it just a sword? A legendary sword, seemingly used by some of the greatest heroes of Legend, but for all that, just a sword.

 

I really have no idea, outside of not wanting it to be an angreal or sa'angreal, but curious to see what the DM community thinks.

 

edit: changed format a bit to make known knowledge of Justice clearer.

 

2nd Edit: After Lucker's confirmation from the Author's word, changed from we are all fairly certain to we know.

Also deleted mention of the sword being a "short sword" per Boli providing the quote.

Edited by DaoineSidhe
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It would be a little ironic the man who hunted down AS and besieged the White Tower carried a powerful symbol of them. It could have been mentioned and put forth in a way that he was using their own creation against them, but it would have needed to have been stated. We really know very little of Justice, only that Rand saw it at Hawkwing's side at Falme, and now he is wearing it because someone dug it up and gave it to Rand which in itself was very vague. I'm going to need to research that one for more info...

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That's just the thing: I don't think there is more information about it. Clever us, we've figured out that it's (almost certainly) Justice. But there is little to no further information about the sword. Personally, I believe it is only a sword. Power wrought, maybe ancient, but only a sword. How it may affect the plot is just as interesting, though.

Edited by Sephie
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Any evidence to say what it does/is needed for?

 

This might not be what you mean, but the sword and therefore the link to Hawkwing will almost certainly be used to bind the Seanchan. The theory has been floating around DM for a while, dunno where it first appeared tho.

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He relaxed his hand on his sword, though he did not release it. He fingered the cloth-tied hilt. The weapon was long, slightly curved, and the lacquered scabbard was painted with a long, sinuous dragon of red and gold. It looked as if it had been designed specifically for Rand— and yet it was centuries old, unearthed only recently. How odd, that they should find this now, he thought, and make a gift of it to me, completely unaware of what they were holding. . .

 

He had taken to wearing the sword immediately. It felt right beneath his fingers. He had told no one, not even Min, that he had recognized the weapon. And not, oddly, from Lews Therin's memories—but Rand's own.

 

He knew the man who rode at their head, too. Tall and hook-nosed, with dark, deep-set eyes, his great sword Justice at his side. Artur Hawkwing.

 

Where does it say the sword is short? All mentions I've seen of sword have been able to use in 1 or 2 hands (hilt long enough for 2 hands though). The only obviously pure 2handed swords were the swords used by shinarians.

 

Perhaps the most interesting thing about the sword is Rand/LTT knows what it is and what its name is.but he hasn't told anyone - and the fact it has Dragon's painted on it from Hawkwing's time. (outside the Aiel Waste and the Dragon banner there are no other references to the dragons)

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All sword fights we have seen rely on two hands on the sword. Only the Aiel and pikemen use shields. Even Perrin with his axe small enough to go on his belt doesn't use a shield, so it can be deduced that they aren't all that common. If one handed swords were common, shields would be because you don't go into battle with an empty hand for no reason.

 

You also have the fact that after Rand lost his hand he said he would have to relearn the sword because most forms required both, and every place we have seen, even Seanchan, use essentially the same forms.

 

It is pretty simple reasoning to get that bastard sword is the average length, or more likely the Japanese katana that everyone loves nowadays, and is seemingly the description of every sword we have seen. The size where it is possible to use with one hand, but is more effective with two.

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All sword fights we have seen rely on two hands on the sword. Only the Aiel and pikemen use shields. Even Perrin with his axe small enough to go on his belt doesn't use a shield, so it can be deduced that they aren't all that common. If one handed swords were common, shields would be because you don't go into battle with an empty hand for no reason.

 

You also have the fact that after Rand lost his hand he said he would have to relearn the sword because most forms required both, and every place we have seen, even Seanchan, use essentially the same forms.

 

It is pretty simple reasoning to get that bastard sword is the average length, or more likely the Japanese katana that everyone loves nowadays, and is seemingly the description of every sword we have seen. The size where it is possible to use with one hand, but is more effective with two.

 

Most stances use two hands but it can be weilded with one. Whilst I admit that some sword fighting techniques use two hands (Kendo for one) there is an entire genre of sword fighting which not only uses only one hand - but keeps the other hand empty, Fencing with rapier or sabre are the most common.

 

The sword in question is often lighter; but more importantly more balanced when used with only one hand; and speaking of Perin you'll notice he uses only one hand when weidling his hammer; even his great hammer.

 

My query was that there is no reference to Justice being a short sword - in fact it says it is a long blade. There is obviously going to be a lot of practice and training to relearn the forms with only one hand - makes me wonder now Rand has all LTTs memories he'll know this already (given Mat's proficiency with his spear from other men's memories and LTT and Bel'al designed the first forms together)

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You'll note that most one handed styles are used for exhibition though. Mounted swords being the exception due to the difficulty of using both hands when you can't move you hips to keep balance. You don't want to be swinging a 5kg lump of steel at someone's head when the duel is to first blood after all.

 

The method of fighting in WoT revolves around fighting with forms, which have been designed with two hands in mind. That would mean that the weight and balance would naturally grow to favour slightly larger swords that would make using them one handed harder. I'm not saying anything about Justice in particular, but saying that the predominant sword in WoT is two handed, in the Asian style rather than the greatsword ttradition from Europe that was used to combat the heavy armour that was in use there.

 

As for Perrin, my point was that he would be using a shield if they were common enough that they were just lieing around for him to pick one up.

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I'll admit it does bug me that shields are not used; out of all the forms of armour the shield has the most use and versitility. The shield was dropped from combat in our world as it was impractical with the rise of firearms - something which has not happened in this world.

 

One-handed fighting has its place - in fact it is more based on movement and speed than its two-handed counterpart and in many cases is superior although less likely to land a killing blow - especially against an armoured foe. I'm guessing the main reason the 2hander was prefered was simply due to trollocs where you would need the extra strength using two-hands will give.

 

Whatever form(s) rand ends up with I'll wager it would be extremly interesting to see... I mean who would win between a master europen fencer or an master samuria - two completly different methods of fighting but both even RJ put on a pedastal of the "ultimate in swordfighting".

 

Whether Justice is suitable and balanced correctly for consistant 1handed work remains to be seen... but swords in this world are designed to be used in both 1handed and 2handed forms.

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..... You don't want to be swinging a 5kg lump of steel at someone's head when the duel is to first blood after all.

 

Just checked a couple of sites on weights of medieval swords; and saw that most swords fall in the 1-2 kg weight category. Otherwise they are too heavy to be effective in battle.

Edited by Theodril
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I will have to concede the shorter-sword point. I could have sworn that the sword is mentioned to be shorter than a normal one, but just did a word search for sword throughout entire tGS, and none of the references state Justice is shorter... Ah well... Regardless of the argument on one-handed vs. two-handed swords, does anyone have any ideas of how Justice will come into play in the story?

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Whatever form(s) rand ends up with I'll wager it would be extremly interesting to see... I mean who would win between a master europen fencer or an master samuria - two completly different methods of fighting but both even RJ put on a pedastal of the "ultimate in swordfighting".

 

Despite the resemblance of most swords in WoT to Katana's, the fighting styles and forms described are not very Samurai like. Most Samurai forms are intended to cleave someone in half, even their parry's are designed more as overpowering counter strokes than actual parry's. There is very little finesse involved and their feet movements are about setting up for as powerful a stroke as possible.

The old adage that the best defense is a great offense is never more apt than when talking about Samurai.

 

As far as the Fencer vs the Samurai...at the end of the day, the Samurai might have some new scars and the Fencer will be missing body parts.

Edited by Finnssss
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Personally I think the swords just there as homage to the sword Harriet gifted Brandon with. I don't think it will play any other role.

 

BTW we know the sword is Justice for a fact. Brandon confirmed it to Jenn who confirmed it to me way back in the day just after tGS came out.

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  • 8 years later...

In The Eye of the World trollocs severely wounded Tam al'thor and in his death pangs he gave his heron-marked blade to Rand. Nynaeve and Moraine seemed to heal him and he continues his journey. Way later in A Memory of Light Rand finds a sword called "Justice" and gives it to Tam when the two reunite.

 

So everything mentioned above is correct, the only detail missing is the story behind it.

Tam al'Thor currently has Justice.

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There was never a sword of the Tamrylin.  Lews Therin wore the ring of the Tamrylin, but it's not known whether he had a personalized sword.  The sword Rand recognizes from "his own memories" and not Lews Therin's, and pretty much has to be, and has since been confirmed to be Justice.  And I don't think Rand would consider the knowledge he gained at Rhuidean to be "his own memory" if only because they would be shared, likely with Rhuarc at the least, and at some point in their revelation, those memories are likely the same for everybody.

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When the Aiel did speak of their ancestors, they did not share the same memories, they only saw the memories of their ancestors. At what point in the past did the Aiel population all share at least one ancestor, probably not that far back.

Recent study on European population showed that today’s European population all share one or more ancestors within the last 500 years.

That said, the pillars are designed to show the Aiel members a specific lesson. What each individual needs to see to learn the lesson will be different. In a sense, the only way for the pillars to teach each individual would be for each individual to subconsciously teach the pillars how to teach themselves. So even though everyone shares at least one common ancestor in recent history, the memory they need to see may be different. Women might see from the eyes of the first Maiden, while men see from the eyes of the men...

Edited by Jsbrads2
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  • 1 month later...

Have you guys seen the quote from RJ where he says he's a freemason? I mention this because there's all this weird esoteric stuff going on in the book that he's getting at.  

Here's a great start: http://13depository.blogspot.com/2002/03/the-refining-principle-alchemical.html

But why would justice be important to him? Take a look a this, it's called "The tree of life" it's from Jewish Mysticism:

Tarot and the Tree of Life: An Introduction - TAROT BY JP

 

This is essentially a diagram of the human soul.  The reason Justice is important is because it connects Rand's severity to his beauty, which leads to death and then to victory. He needs Justice to defeat the Dark one. The tarot can be laid onto here as well.

image.jpeg.f768f66f9cba918a57a03d64028c3595.jpeg

 

The sign Libra is of course the scales, that harkens back to Egypt where upon death a mans heart was weighed against the feather of truth, and then of course in his right hand the king holds a sword. 

What is the meaning of the Justice tarot card?
"The Justice card indicates that the fairest decision will be made. Justice is the sword that cuts through a situation, and will not be swayed by outer beauty when deciding what is fair and just."
 
He needs these qualities to save the world methinks?
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  • 7 months later...
On 1/25/2021 at 2:12 AM, WoTrospective said:

Have you guys seen the quote from RJ where he says he's a freemason? I mention this because there's all this weird esoteric stuff going on in the book that he's getting at.  

Here's a great start: http://13depository.blogspot.com/2002/03/the-refining-principle-alchemical.html

But why would justice be important to him? Take a look a this, it's called "The tree of life" it's from Jewish Mysticism:

Tarot and the Tree of Life: An Introduction - TAROT BY JP

 

This is essentially a diagram of the human soul.  The reason Justice is important is because it connects Rand's severity to his beauty, which leads to death and then to victory. He needs Justice to defeat the Dark one. The tarot can be laid onto here as well.

image.jpeg.f768f66f9cba918a57a03d64028c3595.jpeg

 

The sign Libra is of course the scales, that harkens back to Egypt where upon death a mans heart was weighed against the feather of truth, and then of course in his right hand the king holds a sword. 

What is the meaning of the Justice tarot card?
"The Justice card indicates that the fairest decision will be made. Justice is the sword that cuts through a situation, and will not be swayed by outer beauty when deciding what is fair and just."
 
He needs these qualities to save the world methinks?

My 10 minutes of fame was kicking the Freemason question off. I was in my first month being a freemason when I posted the question on Robert Jordan's blog. I was so happy to get an answer from the man himself.

https://13depository.blogspot.com/2002/03/freemasonry-and-wheel-of-time.html

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