-- Mithril
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Mithril is a type of metal featured in the Lord of the Rings books. It is purported to be very easy to work, as strong as steel, and incredibly light. The humans call it "truesilver" because it looks like silver but it never tarnishes. No one knows for sure whether Tolkien was inspired by a metal that actually exists in nature, such as aluminum or titanium, or whether the metal is completely fictitious.

The state of affairs concerning mithril was extremely dire in the Middle Earth's Third Age. The last source of mithril in the known world was in Moria, which was overrun by goblins and a balrog, killing the dwarven inhabitants. Without new sources of mithril, the metal became priceless and the only way to make new mithril equipment was to melt down existing weapons and armor and reforge them.

As with many things pioneered by Tolkien, the idea of mithril has been used in video games for over two decades as a more powerful version of steel weapons and armor.


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