display | more...

The flamberge was a long, two handed sword used mainly in Germany by Swiss mercenaries. It reached the height of its popularity between the 15th and 17th centuries. It had a slightly wavy blade which didn't give it any advantage in combat but made it more attractive. It was because of its pleasing and noble appearance that it was often used as a court weapon for knighting and such.

Flamberge is also, in the Poictesme stories of James Branch Cabell, the sword of the dubiously moral sorceror Miramon Lluagor; it bears the curse that any man who wields it is henceforth fated to be slain with it, by his son. Since the son is necessarily similarly cursed by taking it up to slay his father, this occasions a philosophical problem, as the act of picking it up apparently perpetuates not only your own line, but the existence of the world, of fathers, sons, and swords, infinitely, in order for the curse to be fulfilled. Flamberge is not the only object of this nature in literature; Léon Bloy imagined a phoenix, like the phoenix of Herodotus which buries its father in an egg of myrrh, which similarly sustains the cosmos by the nature of its existence. Perhaps these are wise designs, for the infinite and the paradoxical are the only things that are truly numinous, in our time.

158

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.