A Ranger's falchion?

A central place to talk about weapons and armour, as it relates to your kit. This is where you show it of or talk about making it. Discussing the relative merits of types of weapons goes in the WMA section.

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Ranger Austin
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A Ranger's falchion?

Postby Ranger Austin » Sat Jun 23, 2018 5:30 am

So, I've been developing my persona and I've mostly got it worked out, it can be summarized thusly: younger Ranger on patrol, injured in combat, never healed right, uses his disability to deflect attention/get information. That said, particularly if Aristan(how's this for a name by the by?) is going on a longer trek back to the North to see his kin, he might need something other than his trusty staff to defend against servants of the Enemy or just average bandits, etc. The issue I keep coming up with is that even a typical arming sword might be a bit too long, given the pronounced limp I have on my left side. I'm fully ambidextrous, so I could theoretically carry the weapon on the right side, but I use my cane/will use my staff with my left hand. Today, while perusing MERF and Museum Replicas, I found this beauty: https://www.museumreplicas.com/falchion-sword

I've noticed that most people on this forum tend to carry arming swords for defense, but I wanted to gauge the general opinion of this forum on falchions and if you fine folks think that Rangers would carry them. thoughts?
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Iodo
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Re: A Ranger's falchion?

Postby Iodo » Sat Jun 23, 2018 6:28 am

I may be wrong but I don't think there is any reference to rangers carrying falchions. That said they were available in middle earth and rangers are traveling people. If it is an easier weapon for you to cary, I see no reason why you couldn't have got held of one on your travels.
Gimli: It's true you don't see many Dwarf-women. And in fact, they are so alike in voice and appearance, that they are often mistaken for Dwarf-men.
Aragorn: It's the beards.
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Elleth
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Re: A Ranger's falchion?

Postby Elleth » Sat Jun 23, 2018 12:14 pm

First the familiar "this is all for fun, do whatever makes you happy." :mrgreen:

That said, the only reference I recall to single-edged swords is "Some of the swords were crooked: orc-scimitars with blackened blades." (FOTR, Bk2 Ch5 The Bridge of Khazad-dûm). One can possibly infer single-edged swords from Tom's comment "'old knives are long enough as swords for hobbit-people" (FOTR Bk1 Ch 8. Fog on the Barrow-Downs) but I personally find that a bit of a stretch.

Further, while it's very much true that real world blades like falchions and messers and such weren't at all *unknown* in Tolkien's time, it's still my memory that they only really started to enter the popular "folklore medieval" consciousness sometime in the late 90's - early 00's as more original images began to circulate online (perhaps older members can correct me there).

All of that isn't to say falchions and such are *absent* in Middle-earth, only that there's no particular evidence *for* them I can think of, and I don't think it particularly likely they were in the Professor's own (self-admittedly vague) mental picture of his world. I'd be delighted to be proved wrong however!

So in your place, if you're specifically wanting a "Ranger" blade, I'd stick with a shorter arming sword pattern, much like Iodo's new Type XIV or Greg and Manv's Bristol. (I know the former is out of stock at American retailers, but if you
contact Windlass directly, they'll still ship you one, it will just take a while. ) I don't know if the latter are still an option - I assume once could custom order one - but it does seem that Valiant has migrated their product line to be more upscale and expensive.

For smaller and lighter yet, I still think the Knightly Riding Sword is a great idea, but again it's out of stock. :(

All that said, I certainly know what the "I really want this toy for reasons" feels like, and please don't let me dissuade you from getting something you've got your heart set on. We all have our own mental image of Middle-earth. :)




Secondly, regarding names: again, this is all for fun, so do what you want. If you want a name that "feels real" specifically within the Tolkien milieu, a Dúnedan would have a proper name in Sindarin. You can either comb through genealogies and minor character name lists for something that appeals to you, or compose a new one from the known vocabulary -
https://www.elfdict.com

It's possible you'd also be known by a nickname in the Breelands, as was Strider.
Persona: Aerlinneth, Dúnedain of Amon Lendel c. TA 3010.
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Peter Remling
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Re: A Ranger's falchion?

Postby Peter Remling » Sat Jun 23, 2018 3:59 pm

While not specifically mentioned, doesn't mean it didn't exist. It could have been a reasonably popular weapon decades before but have gone out of fashion. Your persona's could have been handed down, making it unusual but not impossible.

I have one of these falchions and it's a good weapon and in my top 10. I have a little over 30 swords and it is a keeper.
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Iodo
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Re: A Ranger's falchion?

Postby Iodo » Sat Jun 23, 2018 4:43 pm

I, personally, have always liked the look of this one:

https://www.museumreplicas.com/hattin-falchion

Maybe one day :mrgreen:

I don't see a problem with falchions in middle earth, I suppose it depends on your own interpretation.
Gimli: It's true you don't see many Dwarf-women. And in fact, they are so alike in voice and appearance, that they are often mistaken for Dwarf-men.
Aragorn: It's the beards.
Ranger Austin
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Re: A Ranger's falchion?

Postby Ranger Austin » Sat Jun 23, 2018 10:32 pm

Iodo, thanks for the positivity. I see you're partial to blackened steel...Probably the dwarf in ya!

Elleth and Peter, both of you make good points. I'm a historian, and my particular preference for swords trends towards the more complex-hilted swords of the 18th and 19th centuries(particularly midcentury British military weapons, as well as the highland broadsword). I quite like cutlasses and smaller, handier weapons given I've got a fairly long reach as it is, which is kind of what attracts me to the falchion, as I see it(and the messer) medieval cutlasses. That sword you linked, though, Elleth, is giving me some significant pause. While poking through Kult of Athena, I found this blade: http://kultofathena.com/product.asp?ite ... +War+Sword which I find very aesthetically pleasing for some reason(I think it's the pommel that does it for me?). Now I'm even more confused.

I know the name of the game, particularly with Rangers, is to be as average as possible. This is HARD. I may abandon the weapons situation until after I've got a cloak/breeches/shirt set up. I'll have to talk about boots in another post, given my need for the most possible traction due to concerns of falling. We'll see, I suppose.
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Re: A Ranger's falchion?

Postby Taurinor » Sun Jun 24, 2018 2:32 pm

Ranger Austin wrote:I know the name of the game, particularly with Rangers, is to be as average as possible. This is HARD. I may abandon the weapons situation until after I've got a cloak/breeches/shirt set up. I'll have to talk about boots in another post, given my need for the most possible traction due to concerns of falling. We'll see, I suppose.

Personally, I HIGHLY recommend waiting on the weapons. They're definitely fun and probably a big part of what draws folks to ranger-ing, and (I believe) the Professor universally describes his rangers as carrying swords, so they should become part of your kit at some point, but I personally put them towards the bottom of the list of gear to acquire (I actually wrote a list :mrgreen: ). My thinking on this is that I find it much more satisfying to get out in the woods in kit without a weapon than I find it to go out in the woods with a weapon in modern clothing. Also, folks in this hobby that you might want to attend events with tend to be heavily armed - someone can probably loan you a sword, but might not have spare clothing that fits you. The Crecy sword that caught your eye is lovely and most likely worth the price, but for that price you could probably acquire most of your soft kit, including shoes.

And I'll post this again if you start a boots thread, but for traction I recommend checking out Viking Leathercrafts' footwear with their non slip rubber soles option.
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Udwin
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Re: A Ranger's falchion?

Postby Udwin » Sun Jun 24, 2018 3:54 pm

re: Weapons:
disclaimer: as I'm completely focused on common impressions, and haven't played with swords since LotR was in theaters, large bladed weapons are totally outside my wheelhouse. However, if your goal is to be inconspicuous so as to be a better information-gathering Ranger, I would think you would want something smaller that can easily be concealed under one's cloak. An extra-long seax paired with a staff would give you a diverse toolkit to handle most ruffians and nasties one would encounter in Eriador.

re: Names:
again, I haven't seriously messed with Elvish since LotR. But as Elleth said, a Dunedain Ranger would have a Sindarin name, so if you want to be as 'in-universe' as possible, you'll want to pick something from that lexicon. A local nickname would also be a good alternative, keeping your Dunedain name private. As you and I share a given name, here's my trick for making in-universe names: look up your actual name's etymology, and then 'translate' that into your language of choice.
ex.: for my Beorning persona, I pulled up a Gothic language dictionary, and looked up respected/honored (the root meaning: via August-->Augustine-->Austin). That the Gothic word Áistan links up so neatly just gives extra immersion.

re: 'Aristan': The -stan ending is of a Germanic root (see the Old English word Eorcanstan (literally Arkenstone) used to translate 'Silmaril' in the old Eriol/Aelfwine frame stories), and so would not be appropriate in a Sindarin name. (Totally fine for a Rohirric/Lake-town/Beorning/Dalish persona though!)
The Ar- stem is appropriate for a Dunedain name, as you will note that the names of the Chieftains of the Dunedain all begin with Ar-. I don't know if that was something exclusively reserved for that line, or if a 'common' Dunedain could be named the same. I would use something else just to be on the safe side.
A 'mixed' name of Aristan, however, makes little sense in a Middle-earth context.

re: weapons in general, I'm with Taurinor. Get your soft kit in order first before going for the Sharp & Shiny. A good staff will serve you very well practically until you can acquire your hardware.
Personae: Aistan son of Ansteig, common Beorning of Wilderland; Tungo Boffin, Eastfarthing Bounder, 3018 TA
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Ursus
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Re: A Ranger's falchion?

Postby Ursus » Sun Jun 24, 2018 10:21 pm

To echo Udwin a good hardwood staff in particular is incredibly fearsome. If you manage the length correctly it can wielded as you would a longsword or any of the pantheon of pole weapons.

In regards to a falchion. If you are crafty at all there are some wicked brilliant machete mods online that can be done for a fraction of the cost of a higher end blade.

Here’s a link to an awesome mod someone did. You wouldn’t even have to go to the extremes he did and forge hilt parts as it wasn’t at all uncommon for messers, falchions, and seaxes to have entirely organic hilts.
https://youtu.be/bGrQHItS7V4
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Harper
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Re: A Ranger's falchion?

Postby Harper » Mon Jun 25, 2018 3:36 am

I have to agree with both Udwin and Ursus.

Unless you are carrying a bow, I think that a staff would fit your persona perfectly. Nobody would give a wounded warrior with a staff a second look so it works well for intelligence gathering. Some other things to consider:

1) They are dual use--a staff is an excellent tool for the wild;
2) They are inexpensive and the money saved can be used on other pieces of kit;
3) They are good for teaching distance in fighting; and,
4) There should be no problem with modern laws.

The OP was about a falchion. I don't recollect any specific reference to one or to a falchion-like sword. However, I don't see any problem with one either. A long hunk of sharpened metal--there are only so many practical variations.

Personally, I would go with a shorter blade. A messer or long seax would be consistent with the long white hunting knife carried by Legolas. Again, these would be a dual use tool/weapon that nobody would give a second glance at. They are also a lot easier to carry in the woods. While you have to check your state laws, they may even be lawful to carry.
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Kortoso
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Re: A Ranger's falchion?

Postby Kortoso » Wed Jun 27, 2018 7:05 am

It may or may not be appropriate to your interpretation of your Ranger persona, or any medieval woodsman, but this messer has been acclaimed by many who know their blades:
http://www.coldsteel.com/maa-messer.html
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