Top 10 Mythical Weapons and Items

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Top 10 Mythical Weapons and Items

VOICE OVER: Rebecca Brayton
These objects are the stuff of legend. For this list, we're looking at legendary weapons, amulets, and relics from various mythologies. Welcome to WatchMojo, and today, we're counting down our picks for the Top 10 Mythical Items.
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Top 10 Mythical Items

These objects are the stuff of legend. Welcome to WatchMojo, and today, we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Mythical Items.

For this list, we’re looking at legendary weapons, amulets, and relics from various mythologies.

#10: Ruyi Jingu Bang

This staff from Chinese mythology could change in size depending on how big or small the owner wanted it. The Ruyi Jingu Bang was first obtained by Sun Wukong, the Monkey King, during a visit to an underwater dragon kingdom, where the staff acted as a column supporting the palace. The Dragon King who dwelled in the palace allowed Sun Wukong to take it as a gift, provided he could actually lift it. In succeeding in this task, the Monkey King collected a powerful tool and weapon . . . that could be conveniently shrunk and carried behind his ear!

#9: Argo

The Argo was the ship that Jason and his crew, collectively known as the Argonauts, set sail in during their quest to find the Golden Fleece. Accompanying Jason on his voyage to Colchis aboard the Argo was none other than the legendary strongman Heracles. Built by the shipwright Argus, this vessel was made of special wood from a forest in Dodona, and its prow was said to have the ability to foresee the future. After the Golden Fleece had been retrieved, the ship was retired and transformed into a constellation.

#8: Aladdin’s Lamp

Aladdin’s lamp might actually be based on a true story. The original source of the tale is thought to be Syrian storyteller Hanna Diyab, and many details parallel his own life. During his travels, he was also led to discover a lamp by a treasure-hunting stranger who claimed to have magic powers. Aladdin’s lamp, however, could summon a lesser and a greater genie, bound to carry out the will of the lamp’s owner. Using their power Aladdin became rich and powerful, and defeated an evil sorceror who wanted the lamp for himself.

#7: Mjölnir

This mighty hammer of Thor was created thanks to a bet that Loki made with the dwarf brothers brothers Brokkr and Sindri. He wagered his head that they couldn’t match the craftmanship of their rivals, the Sons Ivaldi. Despite its short handle, Mjölnir was powerful enough to demolish mountains, and it has a boomerang quality, swinging back to the owner after having been thrown. In one Norse story, Thor lost Mjölnir when it was stolen by the giant Thrym. The god of thunder managed to get his hammer back, but only after a wacky scheme in which he disguised himself as Thrym’s bride-to-be.

#6: Apollo’s Bow

In Greek mythology, Apollo is considered the god of archery, so you know his bow has to be worthy of such a title. The bow was created by Hephaestus, so that Apollo could protect his mother Leto from the serpent monster Python, which had been sent by Hera to kill her. Apollo used the bow to hunt down and kill Python by the Castalian Spring in Delphi. This deed saved Leto’s life but put Apollo at odds with Gaia because the monster was a daughter of the earth goddess.

#5: Golden Fleece

This wool taken from a magical, flying ram features in one of the most famous stories in Greek mythology. The ram was the son of the god Poseidon and the nymph Theophane. After the ram’s death, its fleece was hung on an oak in a sacred grove. In order to take his rightful place as king of Iolcus, the hero Jason is tasked with finding the Fleece. In his quest, Jason enlists the help of a witch named Medea, whom he later marries. The Fleece is guarded by a dragon that never sleeps, but using a sleeping potion from Medea, Jason is able to retrieve it.

#4: Armor of Achilles

This suit of armor worn by Achilles during the Trojan War was designed by Hephaestus and included a shield renowned for its impressive design. Unfortunately, the armor was unable to save Achilles when Paris directed an arrow at Achilles’ heel, which was his weak spot. After Achilles’ death, Odysseus and Ajax argued over who would get the armor, with each man making the case as to why he was more deserving. When Odysseus was awarded the armor, Ajax went into a blind fit of rage, which eventually led to his suicide.

#3: Pandora’s Box

Actually not a box, but rather a jar, this artefact is the source of all our woes. After Prometheus stole fire from the gods, and presented it to mankind, Zeus created his own revenge gift. This was Pandora, the first woman, who arrived with a jar that contained all the evils of the world. When she opened it, all these evils flew out, except for Hope. In later versions, Pandora’s actions were said to be motivated by curiosity. Today, to open Pandora’s box is to unleash unwanted and unexpected troubles.

#2: The Holy Grail

The Holy Grail is said to be the cup used by Jesus at the Last Supper. It used to catch his blood during the crucifixion. In some Arthurian stories, the Grail is a wondrous cup or bowl that belongs to the wounded Fisher King. In others, it’s a lost relic that King Arthur’s knights must set out in search of. In some versions of the tale, Sir Galahad ends up finding the sacred cup, thanks to his purity . . . which might come as a surprise for those who associate him with Michael Palin’s portrayal in “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.” An elusive, mystical item, the Holy Grail has become a symbol for something that’s been long sought after.

Before we unveil our number one pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

Poseiden’s Trident

The Cap of Invisibility

Zeus’ Shield Aegis

The Book of Thoth

Odin’s Spear Gungnir

#1: Excalibur

According to Arthurian legend, this sword gives its possessor the right to rule over Britain. In some versions, Arthur obtains the sword by pulling it from a stone, but in others, it’s given to Arthur by the Lady of the Lake. Depending on the story, Excalibur is said to have special powers such as protecting the life of the wielder, no matter how much blood is lost during a battle. In Sir Thomas Malory’s “Le Morte D’Arthur,” when Excalibur was drawn in battle, its blade was as bright as thirty torches, overwhelming approaching enemies.
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