Morgul-blades, also called "Morgul-knives", were magical and poisonous daggers that were used by the Ringwraiths during the Third Age. After having tasted flesh, the dagger breaks, leaving a shard of the blade in its victim. The remaining blade soon turns to dust, and the shard works its way through the body to the heart. If the shard of the blade stays in the victim for too long, the victim becomes a wraith.
Since they are just short daggers, Morgul Blades may not have been very effective in battle. The blade might have been reserved for Mordor's greatest enemies or for use as a punishment.
Frodo himself was stabbed by a Morgul Blade at Weathertop by The Witch-king of Angmar. A fragment of the blade remained within Frodo's wound, working its way toward his heart and threatening to turn Frodo into a wraith. Elrond was able to remove the shard and heal the wound, but each year on the anniversary of receiving the wound Frodo became seriously ill. Only his eventual departure to Valinor, also known as the Undying Lands, offered a permanent cure.
Athelas (or Kingsfoil) is known to slow the poisonous effect of the Morgul-blade, though true healing (usually Elven healing) is necessary in order to fully cure a victim. This remedy is also known to heal other Mordor-associated illnesses, like the Black Breath of the Ringwraiths.
Portrayal in adaptationsEdit
The Lord of the Rings film trilogyEdit
In The Fellowship of the Ring, the Witch-king uses the Morgul blade to wound Frodo as in the book. However, it disintegrates very shortly thereafter, as opposed to the period in the novel. Also, the shard of this blade doesn't remain in Frodo's wound but his condition after being stabbed is much more dramatic than in the book.
The Hobbit film trilogyEdit
In the film The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012), a shade of the Witch-king uses a Morgul-blade to attack Radagast the Brown at Dol Guldur, but Radagast fends off the shade and takes the weapon, giving it to Gandalf. Gandalf later tries to use the Morgul-blade as proof that the White Council should attack Dol Guldur, but Saruman overrules him. Saruman believes that there is no proof that it could be a Morgul blade. Galadriel points out that the blade was buried with the Witch-king of Angmar by the men of the north within the High Fells of Rhudaur. Elrond adds that it was in a cave sealed by powerful Elven magic.
In the film The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013), Kili is wounded by a Morgul-arrow to the thigh. He nearly dies, but is saved by Tauriel, as she treats him with Athelas and Elven healing. Although it is a Morgul-weapon, if wounded by an arrow, the victim does not turn into a wraith, although the same healing and treatment is required.
- In EA's Battle for Middle-earth II, the Mordor faction has access to the Nazgul hero unit with the Morgul Blade ability. This ability stuns a unit and turns it into a wraith when it is killed under this effect. The wraith can then be controlled by the owner of the Nazgul.
- In EA's BFME II: Rise of the Witch-king, Captain Carthaen was stabbed with a Morgul-blade by Morgomir and became Karsh the Whisperer after the Dark Plague Ritual on the Barrow Downs; Carthaen became a wraith that journeyed across the Northern lands hunting for the enemies of the Witch-king. His tortured spirit became free after Elrond of Rivendell killed him with his Noldorin sword. The spirit of Carthaen went to the Valar and Karsh's body was later destroyed (in the campaign).
- In The Lord of the Rings Online, the Ranger Amdir was wounded by a Morgul-blade during the beginning of the Man and Hobbit Epic Quest lines. Even after Strider's attempt to cure him with Kingsfoil gathered by the player, Amdir leaves with Cargul during the Assault on Archet. His appearance changes when the player encountered him again in the Blackwold's Hideout, having a more undead or zombified face. Amdir ran away from the hideout, and was encountered again under Marshwater Fort. Later, now fully under the Enemy's control, Amdir, clad in red Nazgul robes, fights against the player one last time before finally being at peace.
Translations around the WorldEdit
|Foreign Language||Translated name|
|Chinese (Hong Kong)||魔窟劍|
|Barrow-blades • Sting|
|Durin's Axe • Orcrist|
|Grond • Grond (Warhammer) • Morgul-blade|
|Aeglos • Anglachel • Anguirel • Angrist • Aranrúth • Belthronding • Dailir • Glamdring • Orcrist • Ringil|
|Andúril • Black Arrow • Dagmor • Dramborleg • Gúthwinë • Gurthang • Herugrim • Narsil • Red Arrow|