Mordenkainen was a prolific archmage from the world of Oerth who was responsible for many powerful and useful spells.[3]


His hair and beard were both long, black and peppered with grey streaks. When mad, his eyes crackled with eldritch power.[4]


Typically stubborn and one who doesn't suffer fools gladly, Mordenkainen can be difficult even with his friends.[4]

While suffering from his madness, he was convinced that enemies were everywhere and he was being constantly watched by evil agents.[4]


Mordenkainen was an acquaintance of Elminster Aumar; the two met on numerous occasions at Ed Greenwood's house on Earth to exchange spells and lore.[6]


Although Mordenkainen resided primarily on Oerth, by at least 1367 DR, his spells were not uncommon among spellbooks in Faerûn.[3]

Mordenkainen later traveled to Barovia in an attempt to free the local population from its vampire darklord Strahd. However, he underestimated Strahd's power and, after barely surviving a confrontation with him, he lost his spellbook and his staff, eventually losing his memory and being driven to the brink of madness. He became known by the locals as the Mad Mage of Mount Baratok.[4]

In 1491 DR, Mordenkainen, still suffering from bouts of madness, was in Waterdeep, where Storm Silverhand and Elminster was helping him to recover from them.[1]

Rumors and LegendsEdit

His toenails appeared to be a venerated item in some places.[7]


This is an (possibly) incomplete list of his many spells. The most widely known are:




  1. 1.0 1.1 Ed Greenwood (2016-06-07). Death Masks. (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-6593-2.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Andy Collins, Bruce R. Cordell (July 2002). Epic Level Handbook. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 308. ISBN 0-7869-2658-9.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Ed Greenwood, Eric L. Boyd (1996). Volo's Guide to All Things Magical. (TSR, Inc), p. 109. ISBN 0-7869-0446-1.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 Christopher Perkins, Tracy Hickman, Laura Hickman (March 2016). Curse of Strahd. In Kim Mohan ed. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 39–40. ISBN 978-0-7869-6598-4.
  5. Wizards RPG Team (2014). Monster Manual 5th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 342. ISBN 978-0786965614.
  6. In the "Wizards Three" series in Dragon Magazine.
  7. Jeff Grubb and Kate Novak (August 1997). Finder's Bane. (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-0658-8.

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