Runic Chisels {English} Item in Nimenra | World Anvil

Runic Chisels {English}

Innate Dwarven magic users are not that common in Nimenra. But then there are the Runesmiths of the Dwarven Kingdom. Few of them are wandering outside the kingdom due to their work, but one tool is essential for any of them and they take pride in them, many making the tool by hand with little instruction. They have to be made by the one who uses them, for otherwise, they are just ordinary stone chisels.
— Everam, Teller of Nimenra
The Runesmiths of The Dwarven Kingdom are an uncommon kin in the mountains but rarer so outside of them. But even then their tools of trade are scarce, the Runic Chisels. These chisels are imbued with not only their maker's willpower but also the magic that allows their user to create magical runes, the unique way of magic for Dwarfs.
Used to scribe letters and meanings from the Runic Language of Kadiah, the chisels are devised at first when an apprentice is ready to be made an official runemaker or Runesmith. Many take months to make, some even as long as half a decade so that the tool lives and breathes its maker until either death takes the maker or the tool is lost after decades of work, sweat and magic.

Creating a Runic Chisel

Many Runesmiths begin their training with an ordinary but magically imbued chisel as a start. Later on, once they are elevated to the status of Runesmith or runemaker they create a pair of chisels that they will always use from then on. This process starts with the choice of wood, stone or even a full metal handle. This selection marks mostly a correlation of master and apprentice where the apprentice usually chooses what they have become familiar with during their apprenticeship. Once the material is chosen, the work already starts with writing and imbuing the handle with magic. This stage takes at least three weeks for a well magically connected Runesmith.
Once the handle is done, the real work begins when the smith has to smelt, hammer and build their blade. The blade takes months of work and concentration just as when creating powerful runes. Many have to make several attempts to smelt the bled correctly with the right blend of metals. The use of Durulir occurs to make them hardy, while differing amounts of the lesser iron metals and steel are used for inner cores. Silver, gold and other decorative inlays of weaker metals by the most experienced or brave smiths and makers are seen as both daring and immodest, but also with curiosity by their peers.
When all is done the chisel can be used to make its first rune with the careful chipping of stone, wood or metal. The first attempts are the ones that showed and prove if the Runesmith or runemaker are capable in the end as it all falls as the final exam.


Tools like the Runic Chisels are not only important for their user but also for their clan and the cultural heritage of runemakers and smiths. They house traditions that are passed down from masters that go back aeons, even said to be far back as to before the Dwarven Kingdom was united. It is also responsible for keeping the old Runic Language of Kadiah alive since Erwfiren have since strayed from their common roots. This is because that the chisels themselves are engraved with portions of the language runic alphabet.
Selling Runic Chisels are not forbidden except to apprentices. Many of the sold chisels are imbued afterwards by their user. Some smiths simply choose the lesser way of acquiring their tools for various reasons. They might not connect well with their tool, but for its use, they might suffice in their eyes and hands.
Item type
From 1kg to upwards of 4kg
20-40 centimeters
Base Price
Not for sale (Rarely, uppwards of 500g)

Death of a Runesmith

Runic Chisels are also inherited down to children or grandchildren in hopes of them having the same aptitude for creating runes. This practice is called "Whendo'ked", "When one dies". Some legendary Runesmiths have even passed on their own set of chisels to a worthy apprentice upon their death to the surprise of many.
More likely, however, is the chisel buried with its user, either pocketed but visible in a chest pocket or placed firmly in the hands of the smith. Master Runesmiths usually have several sets of chisels that they used and are buried with them or pass them on. Masters also are buried with a select rune that is made by another master or apprentice of the dead master.

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9 Jul, 2021 02:44

Talking about chisels is a creative use of this prompt. I especially like the care you put into talking about the work dwarfs must go through in order to make powerful chisels. When I read the part about Runesmith Masters being buried with their chisels, it made me wonder if grave robbing would ever be an issue.

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10 Jul, 2021 16:38

Grave robbing? Among dwarfs? Why would you say such a thing?! Jokes aside, did not think about it but when I will (eventually) write about the culture in the Dwarven Kingdom, I will mention the respect for their ancestors that they have. While robbings probably happen, it is a big slight that definitely is not mentioned to anyone!

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