The Bleak Eternity of Gehenna (pronounced: /gɛˈhɛnnɑːge-HEN-na[12] or: /gɛˈhɛnəge-HEN-uh[13]) was an Outer Plane in the Great Wheel cosmology model representing alignments between neutral evil and lawful evil.[7][14]

Description[edit | edit source]

The four layers of Gehenna were infinite planes with gravity at a forty-five degree angle to the ground, making travelers feel as if they were on the side of a mountain with no base or peak. Anyone losing their footing could tumble for miles/kilometers before finding enough purchase on the slope to halt their fall. Nearly all terrain that was not a river of water or lava was slightly slippery to quite slick. All structures were either built onto or carved into the slopes. Heat and light came from the ground, much like Tarterus, but the source was volcanic: lava flows, vents, fumaroles, and mud pots were very common. Earthquakes and volcanic eruptions occurred often, tearing the land apart. On the hotter layers, unprotected flammable items and creatures would catch fire from the glowing ground or superheated gases being ejected. The barriers between layers were always underground, usually in dead end corridors.[10]

Khalas[edit | edit source]

Main article: Khalas

The uppermost layer, Khalas, was the most livable of the four planes[10] with many waterfalls cascading down the slopes, the largest being the river Styx. The Styx followed a rough path down the slope, fell for thousands of feet/meters, ran through twisty rapids before finally disappearing into underground passages.[1] Steam rose into the infinite and empty black sky making the horizon glow a dull red. Khalas touched the Astral Plane and had connections to Hades, the Nine Hells, and Concordant Opposition. The portals looked like black chasms in the floor of deep underground passages. Markings on the walls would often indicate the portal's destination, if you could read them.[1]

Chamada[edit | edit source]

HopelornKhalasTower ArcaneTower ArcaneChamadaNimicriCrawling CityCrawling CityMungothKrangath

A representation of the layers of Gehenna, according to the Great Wheel Cosmology. Hovering over the map will reveal main features. Clicking will link to the article for that location.

Main article: Chamada

The second layer of Gehenna was the most violently active layer with lava cascades thousands of miles/kilometers wide and city-sized volcanoes yawning open on the slopes. The air was foul with acrid smoke for 10 miles (16 kilometers) above the surface and would cause blindness to unprotected eyes and had the effect of a stinking cloud on the lungs. Below ground the air was fresher but stank of burning flesh and hair.[1]

Mungoth[edit | edit source]

Main article: Mungoth

Mungoth was a land of falling ash and burning snow. The furnaces of this layer were fewer and farther apart, allowing ice and snow to build up in the darker places between active areas. Travelers had to brave the never-ending avalanches of wet snow and fiery rock. Underground passages were relatively safe.[1]

Krangath[edit | edit source]

Main article: Krangath

The fourth layer was devoid of any volcanic activity, even underground. All was dark and cold. The name of this layer meant literally "dead furnaces".[1]

Cosmography[edit | edit source]

Mount Olympus connected to Gehenna at randomly changing locations throughout the plane. It was unclear why the mountain had a connection at all to the plane, but some sages speculated that the mountainous character of the plane attracted the planar conduit there.[15]

Inhabitants[edit | edit source]

The only creatures known to be native to this plane were the barghests,[1] running through the rifts of Khalas and occasionally found in smaller number on the other layers, and the pyroclastic dragons.[2] All the other creatures originally came from the adjacent lower planes, mostly to hide from more powerful beings that wished to enslave them. Gehenna was often a plane of exile for the less powerful archdevils and daemon taskmasters.[1]

Realms[edit | edit source]

Even lesser deities tended to avoid Gehenna. Those that leaned toward Law were recruited into the hierarchy of the Nine Hells and those that favored chaos tended toward Hades.[1] Here is a list of the Powers known to have called this plane home at some point:

Appendix[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 Jeff Grubb (July 1987). Manual of the Planes 1st edition. (TSR), p. 108. ISBN 0880383992.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Andy Collins, James Wyatt, and Skip Williams (November 2003). Draconomicon: The Book of Dragons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 182. ISBN 0-7869-2884-0.
  3. Jeff Grubb (April 1987). “Plane Speaking: Tuning in to the Outer Planes”. In Roger E. Moore ed. Dragon #120 (TSR, Inc.), pp. 42–43.
  4. Jeff Grubb (July 1987). Manual of the Planes 1st edition. (TSR), p. 62. ISBN 0880383992.
  5. Jeff Grubb, Bruce R. Cordell, David Noonan (September 2001). Manual of the Planes 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 49. ISBN 0-7869-1850-8.
  6. Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford, Christopher Perkins, James Wyatt (2014). Dungeon Master's Guide 5th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 47. ISBN 978-0786965622.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Jeff Grubb (July 1987). Manual of the Planes 1st edition. (TSR), p. 73. ISBN 0880383992.
  8. Jeff Grubb (July 1987). Manual of the Planes 1st edition. (TSR), p. 75. ISBN 0880383992.
  9. Jeff Grubb (July 1987). Manual of the Planes 1st edition. (TSR), pp. 78–82. ISBN 0880383992.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 Jeff Grubb (July 1987). Manual of the Planes 1st edition. (TSR), p. 107. ISBN 0880383992.
  11. Jeff Grubb, Bruce R. Cordell, David Noonan (September 2001). Manual of the Planes 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 111–114. ISBN 0-7869-1850-8.
  12. Frank Mentzer (January 1985). “Ay pronunseeAYshun gyd”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #93 (TSR, Inc.), p. 26.
  13. Colin McComb (July 1996). “The Chant of the War”. In Ray Vallese ed. Hellbound: The Blood War (TSR, Inc), p. 7. ISBN 0-7869-0407-0.
  14. Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford, Christopher Perkins, James Wyatt (2014). Dungeon Master's Guide 5th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 58. ISBN 978-0786965622.
  15. Colin McComb (December 1995). “Liber Malevolentiae”. In Michele Carter ed. Planes of Conflict (TSR, Inc.), p. 5. ISBN 0-7869-0309-0.
  16. Jeff Grubb, Ed Greenwood and Karen S. Martin (1987). Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (Cyclopedia of the Realms). (TSR, Inc), p. 10. ISBN 0-8803-8472-7.
  17. Jeff Grubb and Ed Greenwood (1990). Forgotten Realms Adventures. (TSR, Inc), p. 38. ISBN 0-8803-8828-5.
  18. Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 182. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  19. 19.0 19.1 19.2 19.3 Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 176. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  20. Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 168. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  21. James Ward, Robert J. Kuntz (August 1980). Deities & Demigods. Edited by Lawrence Schick. (TSR, Inc.), p. 60. ISBN 0-935696-22-9.
  22. Jeff Grubb, Ed Greenwood and Karen S. Martin (1987). Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (Cyclopedia of the Realms). (TSR, Inc), p. 12. ISBN 0-8803-8472-7.
  23. Jeff Grubb and Ed Greenwood (1990). Forgotten Realms Adventures. (TSR, Inc), p. 24. ISBN 0-8803-8828-5.
  24. Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 104. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  25. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc), p. 100. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  26. Richard Baker, James Wyatt (March 2004). Player's Guide to Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 145. ISBN 0-7869-3134-5.
  27. Jeff Grubb, Bruce R. Cordell, David Noonan (September 2001). Manual of the Planes 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 114. ISBN 0-7869-1850-8.
  28. Jeff Grubb, Ed Greenwood and Karen S. Martin (1987). Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (Cyclopedia of the Realms). (TSR, Inc), p. 17. ISBN 0-8803-8472-7.
  29. Gary Gygax (August, 1985). Unearthed Arcana (1st edition). (TSR, Inc.), p. 119. ISBN 0880380845.
  30. Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 134. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  31. Richard Baker, James Wyatt (March 2004). Player's Guide to Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 162. ISBN 0-7869-3134-5.
  32. Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 64. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
  33. Eric L. Boyd (1997). Powers and Pantheons. (TSR, Inc), p. 76. ISBN 0-7869-0657-X.

Connections[edit | edit source]




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