Dead-magic zones, collectively known as the legacy of Helm,[1] were areas of space in which magic ceased to function. They were one of the lasting effects of the Time of Troubles.[2]

Creation[edit | edit source]

Most dead magic zones were found where The Weave had torn apart and left a hole.[3] The Church of Shar also developed several rituals such as the Rite of Unwinding, that could artificially create dead-magic zones, some of which would continue to allow Shadow Weave magic to function.

Mystra or the Silver fire of her Chosen could heal the damage in the Weave caused by a dead-magic zone, but doing so drained power from the entirety of the Weave. As such, the act was discouraged by the goddess except in emergency situations. A wish or miracle could patch a 30 foot area of the damage as well.[3]

Effects[edit | edit source]

Dead-magic zones were areas of anti-magic or null-magic that disabled enchantments or prevented spells from being maintained or cast.

In the Year of the Gauntlet, 1369 DR, Calispar Delgorth, working at the Vipers' Nest zone, discovered that plants grown within a dead-magic zone had magic-resistant properties. He hypothesized that such plants "soaked up" the essence of the dead-magic zone.[4]

Dead-magic zones did not seem to have an effect on spelljamming helms, provided they were already in use when the zone was entered.[5]

Notable zones[edit | edit source]

See Category:Dead-magic zones.

The northern quarter of the city of Tantras was a single, huge dead-magic zone of some 400 acres. It was the site of a battle between the avatars of Bane and Torm during the Time of Troubles.[5] It became a haven to those who had offended vengeful mages.[6]

The entire Anauroch Desert was covered in a dead-magic zone when the Church of Shar taught the Shades one of their rituals for creating them. Using the Mythallar of Thultanthar to empower the ritual allowed them to create such a vast area, though the Shadow Weave and Psionics functioned normally, crippling the Zhentarim travelling the Black Road as well as the Phaerimm. The field did not extend into the Buried Realms however, so magic continued to function normally underground. Several artficial oases dried up, most Weave-powered magic items became worthless and the ecology of magical creatures (e.g. dragons) living in the desert was drastically altered.[7]

Dead-magic items[edit | edit source]

A certain sapphire radiated an anti-magic field similar to a dead-magic zone. It was kept in a specially shielded box to block its effects. Errtu gave this sapphire to a demon summoned by Matron Mother Yvonnel Baenre. When exposed, the spells protecting Yvonnel disappeared and Drizzt's magical items temporarily lost their enchantments.[8]

The same sapphire was again employed by Errtu when the powerful artifact, Crenshinibon, was exposed to the sapphire and was damaged, at least temporarily.[9]

Using ingredients from plants grown with a dead-magic zone in 1369 DR, Calispar Delgorth was able to concoct poisons that were resistant or immune to magical cures.[4]

References[edit | edit source]

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