The subject of this article originates from non-canonical sources.
To learn about what is considered "canon" see LOTR:Canon.
Portrayal in adaptations
The Lord of the Rings film trilogy
The blade is inscribed with Tengwar runes in Sindarin that say "Aen estar Hadhafang i chathol hen, thand arod dan i thang an i arwen.", which translates to "This blade is called Hadhafang, a noble defense against the enemy throng for a noble lady." (In Sindarin "Arwen" actually means "noble (or royal) woman").
The Hobbit film trilogy
In The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Elrond is seen on horseback carrying Hadhafang, having used it in battle against Hunter Orcs. And later in The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, Elrond is seen wielding it again against the Ringwraiths.
Behind the scenes
- This sword does not appear in the books, Weta Workshop created it and its back-story by the filmmakers for Peter Jackson's film trilogy The Lord of the Rings, based on J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings novels.
- The name Hadhafang is a newly coined Sindarin word meaning "throng-cleaver".
- In the original concept for the sword, the inscription contained an additional verse of text that read as follows: Idril i hel en aran Gond dolen, which when translated read Idril, daughter of the king of the Hidden Rock (Gondolin). The text was omitted from the final design for the sword due to a lack of space on the finished prop. In the behind the scenes documentaries of the Hobbit films, the crew still assert that Hadhafang is a sword that once belonged to Idril, grandmother of Elrond. This is an invention of the film makers, yet it still gives lineage to the sword that Elrond wields. As such, it may well be a sword of Gondolin.
- Some viewers claimed that Hadhafang was a Japanese-type sword due to its cosmetic similarity to a katana. Hadhafang was actually inspired by European cavalry sabers of the early modern period (such as the Shashka, the signature sword of the Cossacks) and the Assyrian sickle-sword of the Bronze Age Near East. Like both the cavalry sword and the sickle-sword, Hadhafang was made for use on horseback (katana were designed for melee). However, the decision to not include Arwen at Helm's Deep meant that the only time the sword was seen in use was when Elrond used it in close combat during the prologue (Arwen doesn't actually use the sword against the Ringwraiths). Elrond is able to wield it one handed against the Nazgul in the Hobbit films. Some people have also commented on the alleged bad balance of the prop, not realizing that it's meant for use from horseback.