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Xorns (pronounced: /zɔːrnzzornz[7] about this audio file listen, alternative plural form "xorn"[4]) were strange elemental creatures from the Elemental Plane of Earth.[6][4]

Keep a few gems in your pocket. A hungry xorn is a helpful xorn.
— X the Mystic's 6th rule of dungeon survival[1]


Xorns were very odd-looking creatures. They had radially symmetrical bodies with a large mouth at the top surrounded by three long arms interspersed with their three eyes. Their wide, pebbly, and rocky bodies rested upon three stumpy legs. They had talons at the end of their arms.[6][4] Smaller xorns were about 3 feet (0.91 meters) tall, but the oldest specimens could reach 8 feet (2.4 meters) in height and width and weighed as much as 9,000 pounds (4,100 kilograms).[6]

Xorns were immune to the effects of fire and cold and were resistant to electricity.[6][4]


A xaren (pronounced: /ˈzærʌnZÆR-un[7]) was a variation of xorn with more metallic-like skin. They were slightly smaller than regular xorns, and their diet consisted of a greater proportion of metal, especially enchanted metals, from which they drew strength.[4]


Like many creatures from the Plane of Earth, xorns could travel through ground and stone as if it were water, leaving behind no tunnel at all.[6] They always passed through the ground mouth-first.[6]

Xorns could sense the vibrations of other creatures in the earth[6] and they could smell their food from 20 feet (6.1 meters) away.[6][4] A xaren could smell magical metal from twice that distance.[4]

They could speak Common and Terran.[6]


Adventurers followed by xorns in the Plane of Earth.

Xorns were scavengers, and they consumed rocks, minerals, and gems. In fact, they could not digest meat at all, so they did not eat creatures on the Prime Material Plane. They only attacked to defend themselves, although they could be more aggressive if hungry and hunting for their inorganic food. If in groups, they would often send one of their number to negotiate for food.[6][4] It was extremely likely that they would attack if their requests for food were not granted.[4]


If they did resort to fighting, they often hid below the surface and erupted at their enemies, attacking with bites and talons.[6] On the surface, they could swing their arms at all enemies around them. If they were focused on a single foe, they would rear up on two of their three feet so that they could attack with their bite in addition to their arms.[4] If injured, a xorn would usually resort to guerrilla tactics, constantly merging into the ground for safety and then erupting again to resume attack.[4]


A xorn greedily consuming a chest full of treasure in front of a dwarf miner.

On the Plane of Earth, where their food was plentiful, the xorns were peaceful creatures, living in nomadic clans. Xorns and xarens rarely cooperated.[4]


Grumbar, the lord of elemental earth, naturally favored xorns. They were sacred to the gnome deities Callarduran Smoothhands and Flandal Steelskin and the Mulhorandi god Geb as well. These powers would sometimes send xorns to aid their followers.[8]

The dao would often hunt xorn for sport or keep them as slaves.[4] Xorn maintained good relations with the yak folk found on the planes.[9]


The stony flesh of xorns was a required component in the creation of daggers of defiance.[10]


See Also[]


Princes of the ApocalypseOut of the AbyssThe Tortle PackageWaterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage
Video Games
Eye of the Beholder
Card Games
AD&D Trading CardsAdventures in the Forgotten Realms
Organized Play & Licensed Adventures
Boltsmelter's Book

External Links[]

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the following links do not necessarily represent the views of the editors of this wiki, nor does any lore presented necessarily adhere to established canon.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford, Christopher Perkins (2014-09-30). Monster Manual 5th edition. Edited by Scott Fitzgerald Gray. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 304. ISBN 978-0786965614.
  2. Rob Heinsoo, Stephen Schubert (May 19, 2009). Monster Manual 2 4th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 215. ISBN 0786995101.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Skip Williams, Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook (July 2003). Monster Manual v.3.5. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 261. ISBN 0-7869-2893-X.
  4. 4.00 4.01 4.02 4.03 4.04 4.05 4.06 4.07 4.08 4.09 4.10 4.11 4.12 4.13 4.14 4.15 Doug Stewart (June 1993). Monstrous Manual. (TSR, Inc). ISBN 1-5607-6619-0.
  5. Gary Gygax (December 1977). Monster Manual, 1st edition. (TSR, Inc), p. 102. ISBN 0-935696-00-8.
  6. 6.00 6.01 6.02 6.03 6.04 6.05 6.06 6.07 6.08 6.09 6.10 6.11 6.12 Skip Williams, Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook (July 2003). Monster Manual v.3.5. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 260. ISBN 0-7869-2893-X.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Frank Mentzer (January 1985). “Ay pronunseeAYshun gyd”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #93 (TSR, Inc.), p. 30.
  8. Sean K. Reynolds (2002-05-04). Deity Do's and Don'ts (Zipped PDF). Web Enhancement for Faiths and Pantheons. Wizards of the Coast. pp. 8, 10–15. Archived from the original on 2016-11-01. Retrieved on 2018-09-08.
  9. Wolfgang Baur (November 1997). “Campaign Classics: The Roof of the World”. In Dave Gross ed. Dragon #241 (TSR, Inc.), pp. 88–95.
  10. Ed Greenwood (March 1993). “Campaign Guide to Myth Drannor”. In Newton H. Ewell ed. The Ruins of Myth Drannor (TSR, Inc.), p. 123. ISBN 1-5607-6569-0.