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January 16, 2002

Foe Hammer, 7, and Noah's Ark of the Covenant

Thomas Dow, Jr. ( writes:

I've been reading, and enjoying, "The Fall of Reach", and the other day I had the opportunity to play Halo for several uninterupted hours at a friends' place ... I too began noticing familiar references throughout both.

Firstly, I knew the name "Foe Hammer" seemed awefully familiar, so doing a quick Google-search, I came up with two things:

1) The main one that I recognized is that "Foe-hammer" is the translated name of Gandalf's Elvish-blade, "Glamdring" (not to muddle things with Tolkien refs, but it's obvious Bungie has borrowed from a lot of sources ...).

2) I found links to "Marathon: Infinity" spoiler-guides, which show that level 14 is called "Foe Hammer".

A little lower in the search-results, I came upon a link to

Once again, these series of terminals show Bungie's love of the #7 (quote from Durandal): "Battle Group Seven will rue the day their Commanders willed their ships to Lh'owon."

The reason may be that, according to numerology, 7 is the number of completion and perfection. I took this excerpt from

"Seven is the number of completion and symbolizes unity and perfection. Seven was a sacred number of the Jews and was used in religious observances and daily life throughout the history of Israel and in prophetic words concerning the end-times. It symbolizes wholeness, a final completion that is just about to reveal itself and be made manifest."

[ It's interesting that in FoR, they mention that "smart" AIs like Cortana have 7 years before they reach their "end-times" ... ]

The page also notes that there are a lot of significant 7s used throughout the Bible, especially in Revelations ...

Which brings me to my final topic, The Ark. I'm suprised noone else has mentioned this, but there are two Arks talked about in the Bible: Noah's Ark, and [pause for dramatic effect], the "Ark of the Covenant"! (Remember the 1st Indiana Jones 'flick? :).

I think it's very likely that there's a sort of double-reference going on, as the AotC was of extreme religious importance to the Isreallites (as well as having been divinely inspired), and was used as an extrememly powerful weapon. The AotC was supposed to hold the tablets containing "The Ten Commandments", and to basically be God's throne on Earth (if you dig futher into its history and signifigance, of which there is quite a bit, you'll also find that it played a role in holding back God's wrath). Perhaps this is also where Bungie got the idea for calling the alien collective, "The Covenant" ...

"What do ya' think, Sirs?"

Tom Dow

†††One wonders if the Marines would have liked Foe Hammer as much if her callsign had been Glamdring....And the number 7 rears its head once more.
†††As for the second half of this submission...well this is interesting. I've never seen Raiders of the Lost Ark (I know, I know), but this connection seems to be something big. If the Ark in question is indeed called the Ark of the Covenant, and indeed serves the functions which Mr. Dow has assigned to it, then that fits Halo too closely to be coincidence, in my humble opinion. "God's throne on Earth" seems to me to be a fitting description of Halo; created by a race of such technical proficiency as to be almost godlike, where they built installations for themselves to sit in and ponder whatever sorts of things a Forerunner might ponder. As for "holding back God's wrath," it seems that Halo also serves this purpose; the Flood can be considered the wrath of the Forerunner, and Halo contains them. But, as with the brief histories of the Ark of the Covenant which I have been able to find, it would seem that Halo has far more sinister purposes within its depths.
†††Also, this is now the third type of arc(k) to be associated with Halo: 1) It is in the shape of an arc, 2) It is a sort of Noah's Ark for the Flood, and 3) It is akin to the Ark of the Covenant of Judaic history. And then of course, there is the Ark Theory. But that's enough about that for now. :)

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-Ape Man