Captain America’s Shield

Captain America, the sentinel of liberty, has but one weapon- his shield. Although he has had variations of the shield over the years, he is commonly known for the circular, vibranuim-adamantium disc with the trademark star in the middle. Cap, like his DC contemporary Superman, prefers not to kill, thus he has no need for guns, knives, or the like. Cap’s shield serves as both a defensive and offensive tool.

The shield made of a combination of vibranium and adamantium. Vibranium is an extremely rare, mysterious alloy that has been derived from meteoric remains. Although not as tough as adamantium, the combination of the two makes for a shield of unsurpassable durability and strength. (For those of you who don’t know, adamantium is the super-strong metal that covers Wolverine’s exoskeleton.) The alloy of the shield is strong, but light. Cap’s shield is estimated to weigh 12 pounds, which is nothing for the super soldier to carry and throw.

Because of the strength of both the shield and its user (Captain America is enhanced with an experimental, super-soldier serum), the shield can be a most formidable weapon. Cap uses the shield by throwing it great distances, at great speeds, and subduing his enemies. The shield is also able to absorb huge amounts of resistance, making it possible for Cap to stand in one place while great pressure is applied to it (For instance, a blow from Thor’s hammer or The Hulk’s fist).

The history of the making of the shield is an interesting one. Dr. Myron MacLain developed it by accident. During World War II, he was working for the US Army, trying to develop an indestructible armor for battle tanks. Instead, what he made was the vibranium-adamantium disc that would be painted red, white, blue, and placed in the hands of Captain America.

Alterations have been made to the shield over the years, albeit temporarily. Tony Stark, aka Iron Man, once equipped it with magnets in order to control its flight. Cap also tried using other shields, such as a triangular one given to him by The Black Panther. These variations never lasted, however. No, Cap has never needed any one shield other than his trusted, circular disc.

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