The Great Weapons are Morganti weapons that posses higher power than all others and are endowed with a defined sentience. Dragaeran legend tells of seventeen of such artifacts, each with its own character, abilities, skills, powers and purpose. Once the weapon has a wielder (it is unclear if it chooses one, or if the bond occurs as a result of an independent phenomenon) it cooperates with him or her faithfully and may act on their behalf if unconscious.
In Dragon, a Serioli explains that some of his people "desired divinity and crafted artifacts to find and then destroy those who sit on the Thrones of Judgment." This statement is confirmed and clarified in Issola, where Sethra Lavode explains that the Great Weapons indeed were created by the Serioli to act against the Gods, but that the Gods instead use the weapons (and their wielders) to assist in defense against the Jenoine.
The Great Weapons blur the distinction between animate and inanimate. Sethra explains that the Serioli Cly!ng Fr'ngtha was the first to create such artifacts.
Some traits that exist in all known Great Weapons are:
- The ability to choose to devour a soul or not.
- The ability to enhance one's magical prowess.
- The ability, to some degree, to deflect magical attacks.
- The ability to shield or temporarily harbor the wielder's soul, to prevent its destruction.
- The ability and initiative to act independently in the wielder's defense, even if the wielder is unconscious.
Zungaron claims that it's common knowledge that Great Weapons "have their own life, and you have to come to an agreement with them, and at some point there will be a test of wills, and that if you have one it is a bridge between you and the powers beyond the world". Sethra clarifies that the "powers beyond the world" might be vaguely comparable to fate.
Many Great Weapons also have a special, unique ability (see below).
Known Great Weapons
|Common Name||Wielder||Unique powers and other info|
|Iceflame||Sethra Lavode||is deeply connected in some way with Dzur Mountain, or possibly is Dzur Mountain in every meaningful way (and all that implies).|
|Blackwand||Morrolan e'Drien||can initiate sorcerous attacks, functions as a wizard's staff and a witch's familiar.|
|Pathfinder||Aliera e'Kieron||can locate people and things, even on other worlds and possibly other universes. Destiny-entangled with Godslayer (below), with the implication that Pathfinder seeks out Gods, and Godslayer disposes of them.|
|Vlad Taltos||can tear through normally-impenetrable magical shielding, even that of Jenoine and presumably gods. Can reverse sorcerous attacks onto the attacker. Changes form to what's presumably most needed at the time (see Spellbreaker). Destiny-bound to Pathfinder. Can heal the wielder’s wounds instantly. Possible grants the wielder some amount of situational awareness in combat (see Iorich). Referred to by Vlad as Lady Teldra.|
|Nightslayer||Zungaron||according to its Serioli name, may draw on or enable Necromancy. Calls itself Nightslayer. Minor Spoiler from Desecrator: Takes great pleasure in killing, prefers to kill innocents but will settle for the less than completely guilty. Allows itself to be wielded only by those of similar temperament.|
- See also Speculation:Great Weapons..