The Aimless Blade of Science

In Finland, I am told, when you get your doctorate you get a sword to "defend the truths that you have learned."  Being a sword maker I thought this a very fine tradition, so when my daughter earned her doctorate in theoretical physics she of course needed a sword.  I made her a longsword with a 36" blade, 46" in over all length.  I was pleasantly surprised when it came out at 2lbs 10oz.  The blade is 15N20 at 58 rockwell.  The blade is inlaid with "VERITAS" (truth) on one side and "RATIO" (reason) on the other.   The inlay was done with 18kt gold wire.  The handle and pommel are cast from tin bronze and are covered with equations from my daughter's first publication (truths she learned).  The handle is wood covered with leather and a sterling silver wire wrap.  The medallions in the pommel are also sterling silver.

The name for the sword is from the the Neil young song Thrashers 

                                                               I searched out my companions
                                                               Who were lost in crystal canyons
                                                               When the aimless blade of science
                                                               Slashed the pearly gates

Somehow it just seemed appropriate.