The featureless hilt, unique to Soulcutter, the Sword of Despair.

Soulcutter (alternatively, the Tyrant's Blade, or the Sword of Despair) is one of the Twelve Swords of Power featured in the Book of Swords series by Fred Saberhagen.


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Unlike the others of the Swords of Power, the Sword of Despair has no white hilt markings for an observer to easily identify it. This feature is unique among the Swords. It is a one-meter, double-bladed Sword with a black hilt, forged by Vulcan from a meteorite. Like the other swords, Soulcutter retains its edge and luster regardless of use.


When drawn, Soulcutter emits no noise, however a deep malaise begins to affect all those around the wielder, and also affects the wielder, potentially trapping them and preventing them from sheathing the blade. This feeling of hopelessness spreads farther away from the drawn blade for as long as it is bared, to a radius of hundreds of meters. Beings affected feel such an overwhelming sense of melancholy that nothing they would do seems to matter to them to any degree, and they simply sit down and wait to die. In addition, the wielder visibly ages while the Sword is drawn, estimatedly about 5 years for every minute the Sword is bared.


From the Song of Swords:

"The Tyrant's Blade no blood hath spilled

But doth the spirit carve

Soulcutter hath no body killed

But many left to starve."

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