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A panoramic view of Magnimar.


City of Monuments;
City of Secrets
Large city
13,307 humans, 821 halflings, 659 dwarves, 655 elves, 493 gnomes, 166 aiuvarins, 164 dromaars, 163 others
Autocracy (lord-mayor)

The city of Magnimar (pronounced MAG-nih-mahr)1 stands as one of the two major city-states of southern Varisia,2 and sits in the shadow of the most awe-inspiring ruins of ancient Thassilon, the crumbled cyclopean bridge called the Irespan.3


For a brief timeline of the city, see Timeline of Magnimar.

Magnimar is a very new city by the standards of the Inner Sea region, having only been founded by disillusioned Korvosan settlers in 4584 AR. Its population greatly increased in the opening years of the Age of Lost Omens, when thousands of Korvosans emigrated to Magnimar in 4608 AR, fed up with their former city's continuing connection to the Chelish government.4

The Eyes of the Hawk adventuring group famously defended Magnimar from shriezyx freed from the Irespan in 4623 AR. Several monuments in the city, including The Guardians, Eyes of the Hawk monument, and Grand Arch district, commemorate this event.5

More recently, local adventurers rebuilt the ancient Thassilonian artifact known as the Sihedron, which caused the island of Xin to rise from the nearby ocean floor, spawning a major tsunami that damaged not only Magnimar's waterfront, but ports as far away as Hermea.6


Map of Magnimar.

Magnimar is a large city located on the southwestern coast of Varisia where the Yondabakari River empties into the Varisian Gulf. The city is surrounded by the mostly inhospitable Mushfens.7 The city itself is defined by two colossal landmarks which predate modern civilization by thousands of years or more. The Irespan is an ancient Thassilonian ruin, the easternmost end of a giant bridge which has now crumbled into the sea. This enormous relic stretched from Magnimar's other most noticeable feature, the three-hundred-foot tall cliff which cuts the city in two known as the Seacleft.8

City districts

While these unavoidable monuments provide natural dividers to the city's three major districts (the Summit atop the cliff, the Shore below, and the Shadow under the Irespan, residents recognize nine city districts within Magnimar.

The Summit

The wealthiest communities in Magnimar are located in the Summit atop the rise of the Seacleft, as are the city's centers of government, education, and arts. The Summit contains the following three city districts:

The Shore

Home to the majority of Magnimar's working class, the Shore contains Magnimar's coasts and docks, and the following five city districts:

The Shadow

The Shadow district is the most derelict in the city and houses only the single city district of Underbridge. It is home to the seediest of Magnimar's inhabitants and most members of the government take an "out of sight, out of mind" approach to the district's problems.9


Magnimar has begun to slowly expand her sphere of influence to encompass many nearby settlements and communities.10 These communities tend to be healthier than those of Magnimar's main rival Korvosa.11


Magnimar is ruled by two official political bodies: the Council of Ushers and the Office of the Lord-Mayor. This two-tiered system was established at the city's founding to ensure that no single person ever had too much control. Despite the idealist intentions of the city's founders, over the last century both offices have become more power-hungry and less effective at representing the needs of the city-state's citizens.8

Flag of Magnimar.

Council of Ushers

The Council of Ushers serves as the legislature of Magnimar and currently contains 117 members. Of these, many are nobles whose families have held seats for generations, back to the time when the Council was but fifteen members large. With many more seats now that there are noble families, dozens of seats are filled with scheming merchants and greedy power-seekers, as well as a frustrated number of genuinely altruistic activists and honest merchants all vying to have their personal causes (many of which are entirely self-serving) heard and passed into law. The Council meets in the austere Usher's Hall in Capital District.8

Office of the Lord-Mayor

In theory restricted by the council of Ushers, the lord-mayor is by far the most powerful person in Magnimar. This immense power normally results in corruption. Many of Magnimar's political matters are determined not by who is right, or at least most persuasive, but by who brings the lord-mayor the most lavish and impressive bribe. While in theory the lord-mayor must uphold the mandates of the Council of Ushers, previous Lord-Mayor Haldmeer Grobaras frequently ignored them when they were not to his liking.8

The current lord-mayor is Sabriyya Kalmeralm, who was elected to the post after Grobaras's mysterious death.12

Justice Court

When legal arbitration is needed above and beyond what the city guard themselves can handle, the legal system of Magnimar calls upon the Justice Court. This body of 13 Justices is the highest court in the city state and rules on disagreements as well as the guilt or innocent of those accused of particularly heinous crimes. The Court meets in the Pediment Building which also serves as a prison for the city's most hardened criminals, located in a dungeon deep beneath the building called "the Hells."13

Foreign relations

Founded by Korvosan dissenters in 4584 AR, the City of Monuments now stands as a rival to Korvosa in an open war of coin and words. The people of the city are termed 'Magnimarians' and they call Korvosa: 'Little Cheliax'.14


Ethnic Varisians tend to encounter less prejudice in this majority Chelaxian city, although they do tend to be segregated to certain neighborhoods.11


Compared to its sister city Korvosa, Magnimar tends to put few restrictions on trade and traders. It openly encourages the formation of trade guilds, and generally is a place where almost anyone (given good connections and a healthy amount of luck) can make something of him or herself. Because of these attitudes, even though Magnimar is still smaller than Korvosa in terms of both population and trade, it may soon grow to outstrip its neighbor.11


Temples exist to Calistria, Desna, Erastil, Iomedae, Norgorber, Pharasma, and Sarenrae. Some Empyreal lords are worshiped, but not in formal temples. Private meeting places revere Arshea, Ashava, Ragathiel, Sinashakti, Soralyon, and Ylimancha.15


Paizo published Magnimar, City of Monuments as a major sourcebook about the city and a large poster map of the city can be found in the Shattered Star Poster Map Folio.

For additional as-yet unincorporated sources about this subject, see the Meta page.

  1. Erik Mona, et al. “Appendices” in Campaign Setting, 247. Paizo Inc., 2008
  2. F. Wesley Schneider. Magnimar” in The Skinsaw Murders, 56. Paizo Inc., 2007
  3. Erik Mona, et al. Saga Lands” in World Guide, 116–117. Paizo Inc., 2019
  4. Erik Mona, et al. Saga Lands” in World Guide, 110. Paizo Inc., 2019
  5. Adam Daigle & James Jacobs. “Magnimar” in Magnimar, City of Monuments, 18–19. Paizo Inc., 2012
  6. Erik Mona, et al. Saga Lands” in World Guide, 111. Paizo Inc., 2019
  7. Erik Mona, et al. “Chapter 2: The Inner Sea” in Campaign Setting, 145. Paizo Inc., 2008
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 F. Wesley Schneider. Magnimar” in The Skinsaw Murders, 57. Paizo Inc., 2007
  9. F. Wesley Schneider. Magnimar” in The Skinsaw Murders, 65. Paizo Inc., 2007
  10. James L. Sutter. Varisia” in The Hook Mountain Massacre, 69. Paizo Inc., 2007
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 196. Paizo Inc., 2011
  12. Erik Mona, et al. Saga Lands” in World Guide, 112. Paizo Inc., 2019
  13. F. Wesley Schneider. Magnimar” in The Skinsaw Murders, 58. Paizo Inc., 2007
  14. Adam Daigle & James Jacobs. “Magnimar” in Magnimar, City of Monuments, 4. Paizo Inc., 2012
  15. F. Wesley Schneider, et al. “Magic & Faith in Varisia” in Varisia, Birthplace of Legends, 13. Paizo Inc., 2012