I never used to like Kit Rae swords...
Or at least, I didn't like the concept of decorative or art swords in general. Mostly because I was always of the school that if it ain't functional, then it aint worth looking at. However, in my continual quest to explore every nook and cranny of the world of modern swords and my growing passion for quality fantasy blades it was inevitable that eventually I would have to circle back to take a proper look, dropping my preconceived notions and approach them with an open mind to evaluate them on their own merits.
In this review of the Mithrodin sword, I obviously won't be doing any cutting or subjecting it to any severe durability tests because that is not how to evaluate a sword designed to be purely decorative. But rather, I'll be taking a look at it from the perspective to determine if it truly fulfils its function as fantasy sword art. And most importantly, if it is worth the $100 to $180 (depending on where you buy it) price tag or not (and to make sure it won't just fall apart in your hand!).
So without any further ado, lets get started...
Review by SBG Editor in Chief, Paul Southren
Out of all the Kit Rae swords I have seen, the Mithrodin had an appeal that was hard to deny, and like the other 10 blades in the swords of the ancients series, has quite an intricate back story.
The story goes that the great dark elf warrior and master blacksmith Toukol (pictured above in his prime) forged the Mithrodin (which means sword mother in ancient Aerlundtal) from a mysterious lump of molten ore. Christened and awakened by the blood of his enemies, the sword was to be Toukols greatest blade, and the story is told in part on the back of the certificate of authenticity that accompanies it - and continued in full on Kit Raes website here
The sword also comes with a good sized poster featuring the Mithrodin sword and Toukol in action against their enemies, the Uldurin.
Like all the authentic Kit Rae swords it is quite a nice little package all together, and the picture is good enough quality to be framed and set behind the sword making an excellent display. Anyway, I am getting slightly ahead of myself here so lets take it back a step to give you an idea of what to expect when the sword arrives.
Kit Rae swords arrive in a good sized box, very well packaged with Styrofoam and the poster and certificate of authenticity tucked away neatly to one side.
Be sure to check the contents carefully though, as there are sometimes other small bonuses, such as a cool Kit Rae window sticker for your car or window (or whatever else you want to stick it on!).
Now the first thing that struck me about the Mithrodin sword is its size...
In all the pictures I had seen of it, it always looked quite small and despite looking attractive I was half expecting something like an oversized dagger. But as you can see, the 43 Mithrodin with a 23 blade is no big dagger its kind of like a fantasy elf version of the Cheness Oniyuri in other words a whopping big glaive on a sword handle!
Bearing in mind that this was my first real up close and personal hands on and take a good look encounter with Kit Rae swords, the size, beauty and intricate details of this sword literally took my breath away.
And when I first held it in my hands, I'll admit that I had to remind myself that this is a stainless steel art sword, not a functional cutter because it sure felt impressive (and very solid to boot), and after ensuring that it wasn't going to fall apart on me on the spot, I couldnt help but give it a few practice swings...
Weighing in at around 4lbs 4oz with low center of gravity, you dont really feel its true weight and it is a lot of fun to mess around with. Naturally, as it is stainless steel, you cant do any cutting with it. But it is certainly solid enough to play with all the components are as tight as they can be, despite its somewhat unusual construction, with a tang that seemingly branches off from the lower part of the blade and extends into the handle...
As you can plainly see, these Kit Rae swords have a very different hilt construction than your regular blade.
As it really is quite elaborate and hard to take in all at once, lets give it a good once over starting with the pommel if you can call it that which is a very intricate, and rather mean beak/claw like protrusion set into an ornately decorated curved fixture.
Yes, the pommel is really quite a weapon in its own right!
Now the actual handle, which is around 19 inches long, is really quite unusual essentially reminiscent of a Japanese Katana hilt - with a twisted leather wrap over a black plastic that has a distinctly serpentine texture.
Unfortunately, the diamonds of the wrap are rather uneven and feel really quite loose, especially if you DO swing the sword around at all. And as you can see from the picture above, they are occasionally glued together at intervals which is a bit of a let down and would see them come apart if it was used. However, these Kit Rae swords are NOT designed to be user blades and from the side, where it would normally be displayed, it looks good from a distance. Just dont get too close up though for the other details of the hilt, the closer the better!
As you can see, the junction between the blade and the hilt is one of the most lively and attractive parts of this sword.
At first glance, it looks as if the whole thing is only held on by a couple of metal straps and some leather! But after trying my best to get it to come apart (without destroying it that is), it is obvious that the tang branches off and extends backwards into the handle.
The guard, with its shark fin design and other trademark Kit Rae swords embellishments has a heck of a lot of detail and is all superbly executed. The pictures simply do not do it justice...
The Mithrodin has a blade that is hard to describe somewhere between a Falchion and a Glaive, with two raised points along its spine.
Ornate Elven runes decorate the blade closest to the hilt, and here can be found the Kit Rae swords mark of authenticity.
The sharply pointed peaks of the spine are similarly decorated with what can only be described as fire symbols.
The final third of the blade is wickedly curved, terminating in an upwards rising piercing tip that, if it were a functional sword, would provide two main cutting areas, the tip and the sweet spot which occurs just as the most curved section of the blade begins.
The blade itself has a false edge and secondary bevel, being reasonably sharp in places and completely dull in others. While in theory it would be easy to sharpen the sword, there is really no point despite the fact that the stainless steel blade is supposedly tempered, I have heard far too many horror stories of young people buying Kit Rae swords on the assumption that they are real blades and having them break attempting to cut what would normally be considered to be light targets.
Interestingly, the relatively short blade and seemingly robust design could potentially see this sword actually hold up to usage while other Kit Rae swords, which are generally based on a double edged 'longsword' design, would definitely not. However, I have no desire to test it out in this way as it is completely inappropriate for an art sword like this.
Though in a pinch I am sure that this display sword could potentially be used to drive off a would be home invader or assailant - indeed, its imposing and intimidating appearance alone would probably do the trick there!
Overall I would have to say that the Mithrodin is a very visually impressive sword. Mounted with the decorative poster and certificate of authenticity it looks appropriately awesome.
While I am used to reviewing and testing fully functional swords, and for a long while held ANY kind of decorative sword art in disdain, I can appreciate this piece for what it is and my collection is better off for its inclusion.
If you are a lover of fantasy blades, don't bother with the cheap imitations. Get the real thing. Especially when you can pick it up for just over $100 - if this is any indication of what to expect (spoiler alert - it is) these Kit Rae Swords are worth every penny.
I hope this review of the Mithrodin Sword has been helpful. To return to Decorative and Functional Fantasy Swords from Kit Rae swords Mithrodin Review click here