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The Book of Low Magic / The Book of Magicians by Graham Anderson

[top]Lesser magic:

Magicians are given many names: seers, Illusionists, hedge wizards, Diviners and more. They are united by the use of lesser magic. Magical energy encompasses Cerilia so thoroughly that even unblooded individuals can access a little of it if they posses sufficient intelligence and devote some time to the study of the arcane arts.
Lesser magic comprises the schools of illusion and divination; its students are considered specialists in both these schools. Masters of lesser magic can also cast 1st and 2nd level spells from all other schools of magic.
Anyone blooded or unblooded can become a magician.

[top]The faces of magic:

Each race in Cerilia has its own attitudes toward and philosophies of magic. Cultures vary widely in their acceptance of spellcasters, their beliefs and assumptions about magic and those who practice it. Values, tradition and experience all contribute to a cultures magical ideology.
This chapter explains each races cultural attitude toward lesser magic, from how the common people view lesser magic to how their Magicians view their craft.


The elves have many wizards and sorcerers and often dismiss magicians, as they are unable to access greater magic.


Half-elves can become magicians if they have been raised by humans and tend to have the same beliefs and opinions as the human culture that they come from. If the half-elf is raised by the elves he shares their disdain of lesser magic and will not practice it.
Favored schools: The same as the human culture

Unlikely schools: The same as the human culture

Shunned schools: The same as the human culture

[top]Human Magicians:

As one of the rare individuals in Cerilia who can command mebhaighl, a spell-caster of any race inspires fear and awe in those who do not understand the magical arts. But among humans in particular acceptance of magic and those who practice it varies widely from culture to culture. Unlike elves who view magic as a natural part of daily life, most humans believe magic to be an essentially unnatural activity.
Some of the human races especially the Vos, Basarji and Masetians were familiar with magic long before arriving in Cerilia. Upon immigrating to the new continent, their spell-casters discovered a land rich in magical energy. Over the centuries they learned to channel Cerilia?s mebhaighl to work more elaborate enchantments than they were previously able to cast.
Other human races were first exposed to magic when they encountered the Sidhelien. Some humans who carried the potential to wield magic felt a spark ignite within them upon observing Sidhelien wizards; they watched and imitated the elves until they taught themselves rudimentary spell-casting. A few rare extraordinarily handsome individuals found acceptance among the elves and studied under Sidhelien sorcerers before increasing human encroachment in elven forests irreparably sundered relations between the races.
Each human race in Cerilia now has spell-casters of its own. Because most commoners regard spell-casters with suspicion, human spell-casters tend to keep either their abilities or themselves out of the public eye. They study magic and prepare plans with only a few trusted individuals aware of their actions. Even court magicians seldom appear at court.
Human spellcasters dress according to their personalities, tastes and cultures. Many rarely wear anything that gives away their profession away choosing instead to look like scholars or merchants. Occasionally a powerful magician will dress the part his reputation has earned him. Those who wildly embrace a lifestyle filled with magic particularly magicians who earn their living entertaining crowds, often dress in a manner designed to draw attention to themselves dazzling robes, elaborate cloaks and jewelry worthy of their station.


Most Anuirean magicians come from the ranks of the nobility ? younger sons of younger sons. These nobles often carry bloodlines but weak claims to title or fortune. Free of the responsibility of earning a living, members of the noble and gentry classes have the time and money necessary to devote arduous hours to the study of magic.
More than mages of any other human race, Anuirean magicians tend to cultivate an interest in politics. As aristocrats many have relatives in contention for the Iron Throne or control of smaller duchies and earldoms. It is not unusual for a powerful magician to use his abilities and influence to support his kin.
Other spellcasters take greater interest in politics on the local level where free farmers and craftsmen have strong voices in the operations of communities and the handling of village issues and concerns. These magicians are sympathetic to the common folk and use their spells to aid them when asked.
Favored schools: divination, invocation/evocation

Unlikely schools: necromancy

Shunned schools: enchantment/charm

Anuirean magicians tend to also have levels of another class frequently noble or rogue. Many Anuireans magicians receive their magical training in the royal college of sorcery in the imperial city of Anuire. Others particularly those from titled families often study under private tutors, magicians hired on retainer. Aspiring spellcasters from less well to do families apprentice themselves to local magicians of note.
Anuirean society values family and its wizards generally share this view. It is not uncommon for an Anuirean spellcaster to marry. Many magicians school at least one of their children in the arts of magic.


Brecht magicians reflect the nature of Brecht mercantile society. Most prosperous Brecht realms thrive on trade with other realms all over Cerilia. As a result Brecht magicians often learn spells and magical practices from a variety of sources, but the role of magic and its wielders is nearly always the same: magic is a resource to be developed and exploited, usually as a compliment to other resources.
Brecht society focuses on free enterprise. Its strong guilds and merchant houses diversify political power in Brechtür, which in turn makes the average citizen more aware of his political situation than most commoners of other Cerilian regions. Magic is also a more common part of Brecht economy than it is in other lands. While there is fewer spell-casters here than there is in Khinasi, nowhere is it easier for a common spell-caster to earn a living plying his trade. Mage guilds exist; illusions and magical talismans are available for purchase; many shipping fleets keep magicians on retainer.
Magic is rarer than it seams as false practitioners and tricksters thrive in Brechtür. Failed spell-casters also peddle their non-guild merchandise to the unwary and the ignorant.
In wartime magicians supplement the armies and navies of Brecht lords but that is not their primary purpose. Instead the Brecht spell-caster acts as an adviser or a partner, casting spells and using his knowledge to complement his more mundane allies.
Brecht magicians live in the world of practice not theory. Magic guilds are businesses and magicians rare commodities. Spells that facilitate trade and commerce are valued and schools of magic that achieve these goals are promoted among students.
Favored schools: divination, enchantment/charm

Unlikely schools: alteration

Shunned schools: none

Brecht wizard?s dress practically wearing whatever the weather dictates. Most spell-casters that leave Brechtür become courtiers. Even if they have the skills to live of the land they value security. This is not to say that Brecht magicians never indulge in adventuring. The Brecht as a people are innately curious their magicians are quick to examine anything-magical left behind by people of decades past. They also have a passion for magical items of elven make and have been known to venture forth in search of such items.


The Khinasi as a people have no fear of magic. In fact commoners and nobles consider the study of magic the highest calling an individual can have, they even encourage people to take up the study of magic especially if they have a bloodline. Promising magicians that lack the coins for spell books and supplies often receive as donations the necessary funds from businessmen and tradesmen.
Khinasi magicians do not have to swear to the five oaths or travel to the temple of Rilni. Magicians are sought out as advisors to regents and others persons of influence. The people believe that anyone able to master magic has intelligence, wisdom and wit that cannot be matched by that of common citizens. And that this intellect should be used to help guide the rest of the Khinasi people.
Favored schools: divination, illusion, conjuration/summoning

Unlikely schools: none

Shunned schools: necromancy

The Khinasi try and wear clothes made by local merchants. They also try and wear Khinasi style clothes at all times even when in one of the other regions of Cerilia.


Rjurik people fear magic and by extension those who command it. Often spell-casters are easy to pick out from their countrymen leaving them vulnerable to criticism or ostracism. While most Rjurik people are broad shouldered and tall magicians have a lesser build because they are not as physically active as their countrymen. This has led many Rjurik magicians to train their body as well as their mind in order to better fit in. Rjurik magicians are often able to survive on their own in the wilderness for extended period of time.
Rjurik magicians can have a hard life among such skeptical people. Some magicians envy the druids the respect they receive and tend to respect nature often focusing on spells that have similar effects to those the druids use. Rjurik spellcasters are noted for researching spells related to the weather.
Favored schools: divination, alteration, abjuration

Unlikely schools: necromancy

Shunned schools: invocation/evocation

The Rjurik people place great importance on family and magicians share this value. They believe their work contributes to their communities even if the rest of society does not realize its worth.


Those who study the arcane arts are far from favored by the Vos. The people avoid magicians and sometimes even exile them from the tribe in extreme cases. Some Vos fear spell-casters outright and hang charms in their doorways to keep the spell-casters away. Many elders believe arcane magic angers the grim Vos gods and risks bringing famine and plagues upon the people as punishment. Spell-casters they believe do not receive the blessings of the gods and must be watched carefully. Vos leaders war chieftains called Tsarevo openly shun spell-casters. Some chieftains have gone so far as to ban spell-casters from their sight. Few will order a spell-casters death, as they fear retribution. They have not forgotten that centuries ago their ancestors worshiped the god of moon and magic. Though they turned away from Vorynn, they have no desire to anger his successor Lirovka (the Vos name for Ruornil).
Despite the outwardly anti-magic climate of Vosgaard a few war chieftains have secretly allied themselves with magicians. These chieftains realize the power of spell-casters and want that power on their side in times of war. The cooperative spell-casters have guaranteed their quite aid in struggles against rival tribes in exchange for gold, provisions and freedom from persecution.
Favored schools: illusion, invocation/evocation, abjuration

Unlikely schools: none

Shunned schools: enchantment/charm


Goblin magicians fall into one of two groups those that claim decent from an ancient goblin spell-casting tradition and those that learned their magic from humans. Goblin magicians are very rare and can be found it two places among the goblin cities where there is space for them to practice or as the spiritual adviser to a tribe. In tribes the goblin spell-casters often compete with the priests for control of the spiritual side of life but usually lose the fight. The goblin spell-casters often use spells that inspire fear and wonder in the common goblins duplicating as much as possible the spells and rituals of the goblin priests. Common goblins fear and respect goblin spell-casters seeing little difference between them and the priests of their gods. Goblins will use any magic that they are capable of learning.

==Magicians and seers:==

Most people in Cerilia think of magicians as entertainers who do little more than pull rabbits out of hats. Certainly PC magicians can do that sort of trick but they are capable of much more. Magicians can be characters of incredible depth and complexity, individuals rich in personality, motivations and goals (if not usually gold). As PC?s they bring unique skills and role-playing opportunities to campaigns; when encountered as NPCs they should never be underestimated or carelessly dismissed.

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