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Book of the Damned

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This is a PathfinderWiki Featured Article. This article contains spoilers for the following products: Hell Unleashed
Book of the Damned
Book of the Damned.jpg
(Magic item)
Aura Overwhelming all schools
[chaotic, lawful, evil]
(when complete)
Caster Level 25th
Type Major artifact
Slot None
Origin Tabris, an angel of Heaven
Affiliation Tabris
Images of Book of the Damned

Source: Artifacts & Legends, pg(s). 14f.
This article covers the tome on Golarion and the demiplane it contains. For the real-world series of books, see Princes of Darkness, Lords of Chaos, Horsemen of the Apocalypse, and Book of the Damned (sourcebook).

The Book of the Damned is one of three legendary books compiled by the angel Tabris, along with the Chronicle of the Righteous and Concordance of Rivals, that purportedly contain all knowledge in existence.[1] The Book describes the Abyss, Hell, and Abaddon, and includes details of their rulers and inhabitants and how the world of Golarion has connections to these lower planes. Dire warnings concerning the reader's soul are often appended to these pages.[2]

History

Tabris hard at work on the Book of the Damned.

The Book is a mysterious and legendary tome, pages of which are said to still exist in certain libraries, including the Apocrypha Forae Logos in Absalom where it is termed the 'Black Book'. It was compiled by Tabris, an angel who collected lore of the Great Beyond but whose endeavours with the Book led to his trial and exile from Heaven.[3][4][1]

The rulers of Heaven ordered the Book of the Damned to be erased from existence in a vault-kiln of the Great Library, but the book disappeared and was not seen again until fragments were discovered ages later across the Material Plane. The book has since been largely reconstructed on Golarion.[1]

Copies

Several mortal attempts to copy parts of the Book resulted in mundane, error-filled manuscripts that nonetheless contain considerable knowledge of evil. These include:

Contents

The Book of the Damned is contained in three sections, which may be found separately from the rest of the book. Known sections include:

  • The Daemonic Section[6]
  • The Demonic Section[7]
  • The Diabolic Section[8]

The Book is constantly updated with new knowledge of evil deeds and actors, spells, conspiracies, creatures and mysteries that span planets, locations of portals to evil-aligned planes and sites of evil deeds, instructions on how to destroy good-aligned artifacts and find evil-aligned artifacts, true names of fiends, profane rituals, detailed information about evil demigods and Great Old Ones, and accounts of divine failures (such as the rebellion in Heaven, wars against Titans, and fates of dead gods).[9]

Demiplane

The book itself can also be inverted into a portal to an expansive demiplane that contains the evidence and research used to compile its record of evil deeds, and at its center a path to the Unspeakable Word.[10] The information is cataloged by the Voice of the Damned, a bound entity who also defends the Unspeakable Word.[11]

Daemonic Section

This section concerns Abaddon and its native daemons; it also acts as a vast spellbook containing every evil spell and some others. It is written in a confusing mix of both Abyssal and Infernal, requiring deep skills in both to understand the text, though the book can also communicate its contents telepathically. The frozen bindings of the book seem to be made of ash and draw in any local light. The pages inside are clearly palimpsest, with the redacted sections obscuring earlier history of Abaddon; this is likely the power of the Horsemen of the Apocalypse who are known to wipe away history when it is unpalatable to them. Ownership and study of the book can yield great power but only for thoroughly evil students.[4]

A selection of the chapters in the Daemonic Section include:

  • On the Nature of Daemons[12]
  • Ride of the Horsemen[13]
  • Paean of the First[14]
  • Creation's Suicidal Urge[15]
  • On Daemons[16]
  • The Church of Nothing[17]
  • The Fallen Masters[18]
  • The Ride of the Four[19]
  • Horrors of the Four[20]

Demonic Section

This section[21] concerns the Abyss, its rulers and its inhabitants, constantly updating itself as the chaos of the Abyss continuously transforms the Plane. It is written in Abyssal and is bound with sharp cold iron covers likely to wound any reader; readers of any alignment bar chaotic evil suffer just by touching the book and worse by reading it.[3]

Some of the chapters in the Demonic Section include:

  • History of the Abyss[22]
  • The Maw Eternal[23]
  • Demonicide[24]
  • Whispers from the Womb[25]
  • The Innumerable Host[26]
  • The Finest Treachery of Hope[27]
  • Before Sin[28][29]
  • The Death and Birth of the Nightripper[30]
  • Visitations[31]
  • Rituals for demonic transformation[32]
  • Demonic Spells[33]

Diabolic Section

This 2,500-page, flesh-bound folio of Infernal text contains profane images and diagrams and describes rituals, prayers, and practices of Hell. It also contains heretical information about deities and evil spells. Greater devils can scry the book without being detected, and the book itself defiles its surroundings, empowers evil spellcasters, and answers questions about Hell, creatures of lawful evil alignment, or profane subjects.[34]

Some of the chapters in the Diabolic Section include:

  • Before[35]
  • The Triumph of Hell[36]
  • The Iron Heart of Dis[37]
  • On Dis[37]
  • A Season of Hell[38]
  • Order[39]
  • The Prayer of All Praises[40]
  • The Peerage of Hell[41]
  • Spheres of the Malebranche[41]
  • A Vision of the Pit[42]
  • Exodus[43]
  • The Account of Pious Mor[44]

References

Paizo published a series of books representing three volumes of the Book of the Damned: Princes of Darkness, Lords of Chaos, and Horsemen of the Apocalypse. The Book is also the subject of chapters in Hell Unleashed (pages 16-21) and Artifacts & Legends.

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 F. Wesley Schneider and Jerome Virnich. (2015). Hell Unleashed, p. 16. Paizo Inc. ISBN 978-1-60125-757-4
  2. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 3. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  3. 3.0 3.1 James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 49. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  4. 4.0 4.1 Todd Stewart. (2011). Horsemen of the Apocalypse, p. 40. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-373-6
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, p. 49. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  6. Todd Stewart. (2011). Horsemen of the Apocalypse, Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-373-6
  7. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  8. F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  9. F. Wesley Schneider and Jerome Virnich. (2015). Hell Unleashed, p. 18-19. Paizo Inc. ISBN 978-1-60125-757-4
  10. F. Wesley Schneider and Jerome Virnich. (2015). Hell Unleashed, p. 17. Paizo Inc. ISBN 978-1-60125-757-4
  11. F. Wesley Schneider and Jerome Virnich. (2015). Hell Unleashed, p. 20. Paizo Inc. ISBN 978-1-60125-757-4
  12. Todd Stewart. (2011). Horsemen of the Apocalypse, p. 2. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-373-6
  13. Todd Stewart. (2011). Horsemen of the Apocalypse, p. 4. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-373-6
  14. Todd Stewart. (2011). Horsemen of the Apocalypse, p. 17. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-373-6
  15. Todd Stewart. (2011). Horsemen of the Apocalypse, p. 18. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-373-6
  16. Todd Stewart. (2011). Horsemen of the Apocalypse, p. 26. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-373-6
  17. Todd Stewart. (2011). Horsemen of the Apocalypse, p. 28. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-373-6
  18. Todd Stewart. (2011). Horsemen of the Apocalypse, p. 42. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-373-6
  19. Todd Stewart. (2011). Horsemen of the Apocalypse, p. 44. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-373-6
  20. Todd Stewart. (2011). Horsemen of the Apocalypse, p. 63. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-373-6
  21. Large parts of this section of the Book of the Damned are quoted in Demons Revisited on the frontispieces for each chapter.
  22. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 2. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  23. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 4. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  24. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 31. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  25. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 32. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  26. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 40. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  27. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 42. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  28. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 51. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  29. James Jacobs. (2012). Before Sin. Beyond the Doomsday Door, p. 62. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-474-0
  30. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 52. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  31. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 63. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  32. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 45. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  33. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 48. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  34. F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, p. 48. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  35. F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, p. 2. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  36. F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, p. 4. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  37. 37.0 37.1 F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, p. 24. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  38. F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, p. 26. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  39. F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, p. 34. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  40. F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, p. 36. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  41. 41.0 41.1 F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, p. 50. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  42. F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, p. 52. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  43. F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, p. 62. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  44. F. Wesley Schneider and Jerome Virnich. (2015). Hell Unleashed, p. 4. Paizo Inc. ISBN 978-1-60125-757-4