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3rd Edition Statistics[1][2][3]
School Transmutation
Domains Renewal
Druid 4
Renewal 4
Type Vancian
2nd Edition Statistics[4][5][6][7]
School Necromancy
Spheres Animal,[note 1] Necromantic
Animal 7
Cleric 7
Druid 7
Necromantic 7
Wizard 6
Type Vancian
1st Edition Statistics[8]
School Necromantic
Druid 7
Magic-user 6
Type Vancian

Reincarnate was a transmutation or necromantic spell returned a dead creature's soul to a new body.[1][4][5][8] The arcane magic version of this spell was called reincarnation but was similar in most respects.[9][10][11]


This spell required the caster to touch at least some piece of the dead creature's body that was part of the creature at the time of death; that was not undead, had died of old age, or been killed by a death effect;[1] and be cast no more than a week after death occurred.[1][12][13][14] The soul also had to be free and willing to return.[1] If all these criteria were met, then a new body was formed out of the natural environment where the spell was cast and the soul took up residence in it, being a young adult of whatever species appeared. This process took an hour to complete and occurred without any possibility of system shock.[1][4][5][8]

The arcane version of this spell required the corpse be dead no longer than one day per level of the wizard.[9][10][11]

Some possible incarnations for humanoid subjects were: badger, bear, boar, bugbear, centaur, dryad, dwarf, eagle, elf, faun, fox, gnoll, gnome, goblin, half-elf, half-orc, halfling, hawk, hobgoblin, human, kobold, lizardfolk, lynx, orc, owl, pixie, racoon, satyr, stag, troglodyte, wolf, and wolverine.[1][4][5][8] The environment was a factor in the formation of the new body. For example, a bear might be black, brown, or white, depending on where the spell was cast. A wish or a miracle could restore a reincarnated character to its original form.[1]

The reincarnated soul remembered most of its past life and retained the knowledge of skills and abilities, but the limitations of the new body could prevent the effective use of those skills. It was difficult to fire a bow without opposable thumbs or cast spells without hands for the somatic components, or example.[1][12][13][14] On the other hand, the new body was a prime example of the species and had the movement, natural weapons, natural defenses, and senses inherent in the new form.[1] Physical characteristics like strength, dexterity, and constitution were also subject to change in the new body. In particular, constitution was negatively affected by multiple reincarnations—it was impossible to achieve immortality by means of this spell.[1]


In addition to the verbal and somatic components of this spell, the caster needed a divine focus or holy symbol and at least 1,000 gp worth of rare oils and unguents to anoint the remains.[1] Some traditions encouraged the burning of rare incense to increase the chances of getting a humanoid body for the soul to inhabit.[12][13]

The arcane version of this spell required a small drum and a drop of blood.[9][10][11]


See AlsoEdit


  1. This spell was added to the Animal sphere and removed from the Necromantic sphere by the Player's Option: Spells & Magic. See page 187.


  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook, Skip Williams (July 2003). Player's Handbook 3.5 edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 270. ISBN 0-7869-2886-7.
  2. Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 65. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  3. Richard Baker, James Wyatt (March 2004). Player's Guide to Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 90. ISBN 0-7869-3134-5.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 David "Zeb" Cook (August 1989). Player's Handbook (2nd edition). (TSR, Inc.), pp. 181, 234. ISBN 0-88038-716-5.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 David "Zeb" Cook (April 1995). Player's Handbook 2nd edition (revised). (TSR, Inc.), pp. 230, 297. ISBN 0-7869-0329-5.
  6. Cook, Findley, Herring, Kubasik, Sargent, Swan (1991). Tome of Magic 2nd edition. (TSR, Inc), pp. 151, 153. ISBN 1-56076-107-5.
  7. Richard Baker (1996). Player's Option: Spells & Magic. (TSR, Inc), pp. 183, 186. ISBN 0-7869-0394-5.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 Gary Gygax (1978). Players Handbook 1st edition. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 64, 85. ISBN 0-9356-9601-6.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 David "Zeb" Cook (August 1989). Player's Handbook (2nd edition). (TSR, Inc.), p. 181. ISBN 0-88038-716-5.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 David "Zeb" Cook (April 1995). Player's Handbook 2nd edition (revised). (TSR, Inc.), p. 230. ISBN 0-7869-0329-5.
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 Gary Gygax (1978). Players Handbook 1st edition. (TSR, Inc.), p. 85. ISBN 0-9356-9601-6.
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 David "Zeb" Cook (August 1989). Player's Handbook (2nd edition). (TSR, Inc.), p. 234. ISBN 0-88038-716-5.
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 David "Zeb" Cook (April 1995). Player's Handbook 2nd edition (revised). (TSR, Inc.), p. 297. ISBN 0-7869-0329-5.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Gary Gygax (1978). Players Handbook 1st edition. (TSR, Inc.), p. 64. ISBN 0-9356-9601-6.

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