Literature and Mythology

The Story Behind the Six-Fingered Sword from the Princess Bride

Princess Bride’s first edition coverFor those who wanted to relax and dive into a multi-genre book or film, The Princess Bride would probably suit your taste. It is a book published in the 1970s by an author named William Goldman. The Princess Bride packed up the elements, including comedy, romance, fantasy, drama, and fairytale all in one. In 1987, the book was then turned into a film directed by Rob Reiner and written by the original author himself.

The Princess Bride tells about the adventure of a heroic young man and hisbeautiful beloved Princess. Its sweet and passionate taleof how the man saved his beloved woman would make the audience go ‘awww.’ But like every fairytale, there are villains who are trying to get in the way. With that, the man must fight against several evils in the mythical kingdom of Florin to be reunited with his beloved.

However, while everyone fell in love with the heroicWestley after saving Princess Buttercup, we might want to recognize another hero named Inigo Montoya. In the Story, Montoya is somewhat we could call a hero who would stop at nothing just to avenge his father’s death. Although he was not as dreamy and ideal as Westley, his quest for revenge had fulfilled several requirements for a traditional fantasy hero.

Mandy Patinkin portrayed Inigo Montoya in the film adaptation of The Princess Bride

In the film adaptation, Montoya’s character was portrayed by Mandy Patinkin. Both in the book and film, Montoya’s character was of Spanish descent. He’s one of the characters that lived in a fictional kingdom called Florin. Initially, Inigo and his master swordsmith father, Domingo Montoya, lived peacefully in Florin. In fact, even though his father was a great swordsmith, he never wanted to deal with the rich privilege. With that, he remained obscure.

When a six-fingered man came to him and asked for a sword that would accommodate his unusual grip, Domingo worked over the weapon for a year. However, when the man returned, he did not pay the price he promises, and Domingo refused to sell him the sword. Instead, he gave the sword to his son, Inigo.Subsequently, Inigo’s father was murdered by the six-fingered man named Count Tyrone Rugen, after Domingo refused to give him the sword.

At the age of eleven, Inigo had witnessed the death of his father in the hands of the six-fingered man. He challenged the man in a fight, although he had disarmed him easily. Fortunately, seeing the young boy’s potential, the man let him keep the six-fingered sword. Since then, Inigo was scarred and eventually abandoned the world. Along with that, he grew up, aiming to be the best swordsman in the world to defeat the six-fingered man who killed his father.

Inigo Montoya’s costume in The Princess Bride

He practically spent his life practicing using the six-fingered sword that he wielded during his quest. Interestingly, this sword was described as a beautiful piece of craftsmanship. Also, this weapon served as the symbol of Inigo’s lifelong mission to avenge his father. However, there had been a point when Montoya sank into alcoholism and depression at the fear of not fulfilling his quest for his father. But on a good note, he was able to overcome it. He even tried to rescue and help the protagonist, Westley, in saving Princess Buttercup in between his quest for revenge.

On the other hand, Count Rugen was an evil man who spent his life studying how to torture his enemies. At this point, the Story does not only revolve at Westley saving Buttercup. It can also be observed that a subplot between Montoya and Rugen had begun developing. Although Montoya’s Story was not the central topic of the Story, there had been a climactic battle that happened between Rugen and Inigo.

During the battle, Montoya had killed Rugen, the six-fingered man. On a satisfactory note, he had fulfilled his mission of avenging the death of his beloved father. After all, he’s not trying to seek revenge for a tyrant, but instead to a humble man who’s been wrongfully killed. Montoya hangs unto the six-fingered sword for several years. But finally, just like all fairytale, he was able to move on in his life and lived happily ever after.

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