Nerull: Details and Info please



Feb 23, 2004 11:31:12
Hoping someone can give the lowdown on this dark and mysterious evil. Can't seem to find the references for it.


Feb 23, 2004 11:44:00
Nurull is a god in the Greyhawk pantheon of Gods, try asking the folks in the Greyhawk board this question.


Feb 23, 2004 11:59:13
He's the neutral evil god of death.

Lives on Carceri in an ice palace I think.


Feb 23, 2004 23:08:13
Yep, the Greyhawk power of death. Has big scythe and lives in Carceri. However to some extent they pimped his influence in the center of that plane majorly in the 3e MotP. They make it sound like he's the only person there and his realm therein in the very center of the ice.

This of course is all in the vacuum of WotC failing to even give lip service to Apomps in 3e. (that phrase, 'give lip service to Apomps' should be illegal in a number of states, heh)

Apomps and his threefold palace supposedly reside at the center of the ice in that lowest layer of Carceri where he broods and thinks mean naughty things about Yugoloths and why he hates 'em.

*makes a face at Apomps... firmly inside of Sigil while doing so mind you...*


Feb 24, 2004 0:42:32
I'll tell you a few secrets about Nerull. They're complete lies, of course.

The Infestix was the Neutral power of death. During the coming of Tharizdun it/she joined the camp of the Dark God, receiving some of its power but losing forever the ability to create life. Pelor, the Ascleptix, responded by joining the camp of Good in Elysium.

After the binding of Tharizdun Nerull licked his wounds in the gray wastes of Hades, wondering how to rebuild a power base. The greater spirit incarnations of utmost evil, the Baernodaemons, plotted the creation of a fell race of servitors to accomplish their own goals. Nerull saw an opportunity to gain some minions of his own, if not through creation than through corruption.

He whispered into the ears of three of the 'daemons and they came to him. He told them of their chance at glory, at creating the ultimate servitor race if they would only agree to give him the use of them on request. Knowing they hadn't the power to do it alone, they agreed.

Nerull used his magick to melt their flesh together, creating a bizarre and hideous greater being where once there were three. He taught the creature, Apomps, to seperate its essence to create the triple race of demodands, the first of the fiendish races.

Apomps brought its/their creations back to its fellows, demanding the right to lead as the greatest and cleverest among them.

But the unnatural fusion of three independent wills had created a chaotic taint in the new race, and the baernodaemons knew they would not serve. Apomps and his race were banished to Tartarus, where they plotted revenge against the 'daemons and their spawn.

Nerull built his crypt in Tartarus to be near his new vassals. He grinned a bony grin, and thought about how he could subvert the rest of daemonkind to his cause...

Here's another:

The yugoloths' plan had gone splendidly. The maeldur had been slain, and
the the ability to use its sinuous leaps of belief for instant travel had

The 'loths had a new source of power. It resembled a deeply black cube with a spiraling purplish void within, leading to a reality Beyond that even the ultraloths could not imagine.

The activation of its powers was simple. A significant piece of flesh, such
as a finger, was sacrificed to the Beyond. To balance this, an area of
pulsating black energy ate its way into the recipient's flesh. The area
existed outside conventional existence and, as such, could be used to skip
large sections of it, avoiding the chains of reality whether imposed by
Powers, Necessity or Belief itself.

The yugoloths were kind. They offered this power freely to their idealogical
brethren. The baatezu debated this furiously, knowing the price of yugoloth
gifts (especially those that meld permenently to your soul and body) but
thinking greedily of the potential power it would give them over threats,
rivals, and all those who would oppose the rule of [Law].

The tanar'ri were more troublesome. The 'loths knew they could not hope to
convert them all, or even find them all. Indeed, canny Graz'zt was already
using his enemies' confusion to begin conquering their layers.

The yugoloths went to well-connected, powerful lords of the Abyss. Demogorgon
took up their offer, and soon most of his troops and those of his allies and
underlings were skipping across the Ten Thousand Closets like, um, kidney
stones, er, across a sewer treatment plant... never mind.

And in the bowels of Carceri, the One who had granted the ultraloths the Dark
God's Cube grinned a bony grin.


Feb 24, 2004 2:12:50
Currently, Nerull's realm is the Necromanteion located in the bottommost layer of Carceri, Agathys.

Previously, Nerull's layer was called the Crypt, a realm located on the topmost layer, Othrys.

I'd suggest both of these versions are true - that, in fact, Nerull's realm chains together corresponding orbs on each of Carceri's layers. Thus, the Crypt is the outermost 'shell' of Nerull's realm, while the Necromanteion is the innermost heart of darkness. (I ignore MotP3e's suggestion that Agathys has but one orb in the whole layer, for what it's worth.)

I believe Rip has developed a similar idea somewhere in his site.


Feb 24, 2004 13:31:47
So Nurull may have munipulated the Yugoloths from the very start eh? I wonder what Shemiska would think about that?


Feb 24, 2004 18:03:17
Always good stuff Rip *grin*

And interesting idea CNichols regarding Nerull's domain's structure.


Feb 24, 2004 19:06:55
Originally posted by CNichols
Currently, Nerull's realm is the Necromanteion located in the bottommost layer of Carceri, Agathys.

Previously, Nerull's layer was called the Crypt, a realm located on the topmost layer, Othrys.

I'd suggest both of these versions are true - that, in fact, Nerull's realm chains together corresponding orbs on each of Carceri's layers. Thus, the Crypt is the outermost 'shell' of Nerull's realm, while the Necromanteion is the innermost heart of darkness. (I ignore MotP3e's suggestion that Agathys has but one orb in the whole layer, for what it's worth.)

I believe Rip has developed a similar idea somewhere in his site.

I wouldn't say "developed," but these are the names I came up with for the shells of Nerull's realm:

The Crypt (othrys)
The Sarcophagus (cathrys)
The Casket (minethys)
The Funeral Mask (colothys)
The Wrappings (porphatys)

The Chains of Darkon (agathys) - obviously, this is more commonly known as the Necromanteion. But before the current MotP, I called it the Chains of Darkon, which is the name I was using for Nerull's father.

More stuff:

Nerull is the Flannae god of death and darkness. The antitheses of Pelor in the great cosmic dance, he is the deity of all those who seek greatest evil for their enjoyment and gain. The Gloom-King is not a god worshipped by most. Traditionally, people look to their own gods for salvation, keeping Nerull's name alive through fear.

Everyone knows that Nerull will snatch the soul weighted down with sin and unprotected by the patronage of another divinity and drag them into his hellish underworld. Nerull's image appears in the religious texts, church decoration, and passion plays of many faiths, but unlike Incabulos non-worshippers avoid giving him sacrifice of any kind, and avoid his shrines like Death itself.

For most people then, Nerull's hold is not permanent. Instead, those Reaped are Sown to grow again; they go to the domains of their various gods or back to the womb of mother Beory to be reborn. There is no formal Last Judgment; Nerull simply drags down who he can. His worshippers are most often those who feel the Reaper's grasp is inevitable anyway, who hope they will by following the Hater in life they will at least receive better positions within his court when dead -- despicable villains, especially those who fall under the Reaper's spheres of control; murderers, for instance.

Nerull must have murdered someone. He is the god of murder, after all. Some argue that he murders all mortals in time, but it's mythologically important that there also be a cosmic murder amongst the gods. Beory is the mother of all, birthing the spirits of tree and lake, wind and mountain, life and death, hearth and home, and the higher spirits of reason, but did she also spawn a consort?

Did Nerull kill his father? If he did, he did so covertly, destroyed all the evidence and left even myth silent. His cult learns from this, and acts accordingly. Perhaps the doomed patriarch is one again with the all-mother, or perhaps he lies in Tartarus, forever tortured, forever being drained of blood by his traitorous son.

Blood is a powerful force in Flannae cosmology. From the primal birthing blood of Beory, blood has symbolized life and the perpetuity of the cosmos. Clerics of Pelor speak of the proper flow of blood in the ideal healthy human form and of sunlight as the life force of the earth and sky congealing at dawn and dusk. Priests and druids of Obad-hai speak of the forest's blood, the oerth's blood, and the river's blood. Priests of Rao tell of the blood linking heart and mind. Elves are said by the Flan to be composed of blood and moonlight; orcs of blood and darkness. The Flan themselves claim to be made by the gods from blood and maize. Nerull's flock remembers the blood of sacrifice, and uses its power for the most corrupt purposes imaginable.

The stuff of life circulates through all of all of reality. Emanating from the sun, the moons, and power points in the oerth, it sustains all that is. Nerull hopes that by releasing it from mortals and gathering it for himself, the cosmos will began to wither and fade until it is all within his domain, like the Glooms of Hades, the furnaces of Gehenna or Nerull's throne, located in the netherworld some scholars call Tartarus, Carceri, or the Red Prison. People everywhere pray to their gods to stave off this fate and keep Nerull below in what Nerull's faithful call the Crypt of Souls, for it is here that the god imprisons the damned.

As well as their life force and blood, the Reaper gathers the individual personalities of the evil dead. Killers who fear the undying wrath of their victims often make sacrifices to Nerull:

Forsaken dead
Stay in your tombs
Forsaken dead
Stay in your Crypt
Nerull shall bind thee
Bind thee in blood

These fears are justified, because the Nerullic priests -- Life Cutters -- have been known to animate the Undead with the souls of those their opponents most fear.

Nerulliacs are well known for their practice of left-handed, or evil necromancy. Enemies of the cult and anyone buried in an accessible, little-visited area are animated as zombies and walking skeletons. Powerful victims are often made juju zombies; powerful followers might be forced to become zombie lords or better. Ancient priests have been known to be sent back from the underworld by Nerull to serve again as hecuvas or even liches.

Nerull's underworld court is vast and complex, filled with ministers, proxies, warriors and officers filling various roles in the spirit realm. The monstrous shapes of 'daemons and demodands cover the Nerullic books of the dead, written to guide the damned through eternity.

The major entities revered as servants or allies of Nerull are Anthraxus, Bubonis, Cholerix, Typhus, Diptherius, Asmodeus, Baalzebul, Moloch, Mammon, Geryon and Dispater. Belial is respected but not worshipped. Syrul, goddess of lies, is often associated with 'daemonkind, as she frequents the same planes and encourages their love of deceit, but she rarely works with the Reaper.

Does Nerull have a consort? While some iconographers have portrayed him with Ehlonna or Myrhiss in order to symbolize the death that comes to youth and beauty, he is normally considered to be a bachelor.

with Tharizdun in pre-time rendered him forever sterile. He is not able to create life, only twist it to his service.

Whjile Tharizdun is not well known or worshipped today, in the past the Dark God, as he is called, was the center of a thriving cult. It was Tharizdun who first lead young Nerull away from the neutral fold of his mother down the path of corruption, forcing Pelor to join the light to preserve the Balance. As the elder god's cult began to die out, many of his flock turned to Nerull as the more active source of power, and Nerull turned from a sulking member of a losing side to the force he is today. Still, if Tharizdun were free the Reaper of Flesh would be more powerful still, with the free energies of entropy run amok.

Wee Jas is seen as an interloper who formed her own kingdom in a domain rightfully belonging to the King of all Gloom. Those who look to the Taker see her as the more ancient one: the true creatrix of mortality, the keeper of the dead's knowledge, and their judge, but most recognize Nerull as a malevolent force beyond their mistress' domain who must be avoided, and they thank her for her protection.

The eternal struggle between Pelor and Nerull is like a vast game, with Obad-hai as referee. The ballgames played by children to this day, with the sweat, blood, running and kicking they entail, reflect the sun's journy through the underworld and mirror festival dances and mystery plays which reconstruct this battle. Only the druids believe they know the secret to its resolution; the fusion of life, death and rebirth into one thing, indivisible.


Feb 24, 2004 23:06:47
Oddly, Darkon is a realm in Ravenloft. I'll stick with the Necromanteion, since I'd prefer that my campaigns not spill into each other quite so much.

Chris Nichols, former Ravenloft writer