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Ancient Magic

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Ancient Magic
Cover illustration for Ancient Magic
Product Information
Rules Edition: Fifth
Abbreviation: AM
Product Type: Sourcebook
Author(s): Erik Dahl, Timothy Ferguson, Jeff Kyer, Richard Love, John Post, Paul Tevis and Alexander White
Publisher: Atlas Games
Product Number: AG0284
ISBN: 1-58978-094-9
Release date: January 2007
Format: Hardcover or PDF, 144 pages
Availability: In print; PDF available

Ancient Magic is an Ars Magica supplement that details several examples of ancient magic that can be discovered and, possibly, integrated into Hermetic magic. The book is primarily intended for Seeker characters or plots.

Subject and Contents[edit]

Ancient Magic presents ten extinct magical traditions, and ways to discover their mystic secrets and integrate them into Hermetic magic. The traditions vary in detail, from the highly-detailed Hyperborean Magic system that is given in enough detail to create Hyperborian priest-wizards, to Defixio Magic, of which only clues and relics remain.

The traditions are unrelated and it is unlikely that any given saga will use much of the contents of this book. But that is not its intent. The book offers a rich selection of exotic locales, ancient magical secrets, and the promise fo great power and adventure - which is something just about any saga could use an infusion of.

Chapters[edit]

  1. The Language of Adam - Useful for attaining Arcane Connections; a potent discovery that could conceivably forever change the Order of Hermes and Mythic Europe.
  2. Canaanite Necromancy - Elaborates on Necromancy.
  3. Defixio Magic - Another way around the need for Arcane Connections.
  4. Fertility Magic - Affecting people before they are born, up to and including ensuring the presence of the Gift.
  5. Grigori Magic - Angel-taught Magic.
  6. Heron of Alexandria's Legacy - Magical items with an intelligence of their own.
  7. The Hesperides - Magic related to coordinates and specific places.
  8. Hyperborean Magic - Remarkable magical items.
  9. Rune Magic - Artifacts with Magic that bypasses Magic Resistance. This chapter includes a detailed history of Rune Wizards and their involvement with Damhan-Allaidh and the Order of Hermes, as well as one possible explanation for the rumors about the Order of Odin.

Other Content[edit]

In addition to providing information on ancient magic, AM includes several tidbits of general interest:

  • Rules on mongolian bows are given on p. 16-17.
  • Rules for conducting Hermetic magic in languages other than Latin are on p. 29.
  • A discussion of the spirits of the dead in ArM is given on p. 33, and communicating with the dead and Infernal attention on p. 34.
  • A discussion of how Hermetic magic treats pregnancy is on p. 55.
  • New fertility-related spells are detailed on p. 56, that may or may not be available for Hermetic maga to develop to cast on themselves (it isn't clear). A spell to move stone is on p. 60.
  • Extended rules for library-research are on page 68, expanding on the rules in Covenants.
  • Stone-age weapon statistics are given on p.95. Supposedly, such (stone-age) weapons are available somewhere in Mythic Europe or one of its regiones.
  • The Altars or "dragon-lines" of Alexander the Great (p. 125) may, at the SG's whim, exist regardless of any Ancient Magic related mechanics.

Community Reviews[edit]

Please edit this page to add your own comments about this book.

Related Products[edit]

  • Rune Magic has been covered in other Sourcebooks besides Ancient Magic, at least since Fourth Edition's Ultima Thule: Mythic Scandinavia. Ancient Magic takes the premise that Rune Magic is well remembered, but assumed lost (justifying the involvement of Seekers to pursue it).
  • Hedge Magic Revised Edition, that has some overlap in content (particularly connections between Rune Magic and Vitkir) and rules (for integrating Ancient or Hedge magic).

Related Sites[edit]

See Also[edit]

Legacy Page[edit]

The history of this page before August 6, 2010 is archived at Legacy:ancient_magic