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This never really occurred to me, but I never noticed that the Block of Incense was missing from the Player's Handbook, where it should have been in the adventuring gear list. (Dungeons and Dragons, Fifth Edition). I double-checked, just to make sure. One of my player's pointed this out to me, and, me being DM, had no real answer. The only reference we found was this,

Priest’s Pack (19 gp). Includes a backpack, a blanket, 10 candles, a tinderbox, an alms box, 2 blocks of incense, a censer, vestments, 2 days of rations, and a waterskin.

If there is someplace where it is listed in an official source, where would it be? Specifically, I am looking for price and weight.

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1 Answer 1

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There are many items left undefined; they are left up to the GM

There are several items in the Player's Handbook which are left undefined, such as the Mess Kit, Grappling Hook, Hammer, and Chain; and others from various modules such as garlic, and salt from Curse of Strahd. Some items we learn their weights or prices, but many we don't. Amongst only the various Packs and Kits in the Player's Handbook the following are mentioned, but never defined in any way: string, bell, censer, alms box, bag of sand.

Blocks of incense are a similar item, they are not specifically defined in the rules. Thus, how they work would be left up to a GM.


Unfortunately, we also cannot determine the price of the incense by summing up the price of all the items in the Priest's Pack and comparing it to the Pack's own price (19gp). Though this does work for other Packs (The Diplomat's Pack costs 39gp and the sum of everything in it is 39.24gp).

What we can say is that an Alms Box, 2 blocks of incense, 1 censer, and vestments collectively cost around 14.7gp. None of these items have a price though so we are quite stuck. Fine Clothes (probably close to Vestments) already cost 15gp so we can't quite use those either unless we assumed everything else was free.


Incense is used in some other places:
The Acolyte background gets 5 sticks of incense.
There are also spells which use incense as a material component including (but not limited to): commune, conjure elemental, control water, divination, find familiar, and forbiddance.

The Dungeon Master's Guide also mentions incense when discussing religious observances, when listing items a shop may have, and lists an Incense Burner as a religious article.

Tomb of Annihilation also has an item called "Insect Repellent" which comes in two forms, a greasy salve and a block of incense. This insect repellent incense block costs 1sp, has no listed weight, and has a specific effect of repelling insects near it while lit. This is certainly not the same incense found within the Priest's Pack, but it is an example of a specific type of incense somewhere else in the rules.

Unfortunately, in none of these places is incense further defined, nor given a price/volume or price/weight.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ This seems to be what I was thinking, but I'll wait for a bit, see if a reference does turn up. I just don't wanna accept your answer right away :) \$\endgroup\$
    – Bookwyrm
    Sep 15, 2019 at 0:47
  • \$\begingroup\$ I would argue that 'vestments' would be close to robes. \$\endgroup\$ May 12, 2023 at 23:40
  • \$\begingroup\$ The price and weight of the Mess Kit, Grappling Hook, Hammer, and Chain mentioned at the beginning of this answer are all specified in the Adventuring Gear table on page 150 of the Player's Handbook. \$\endgroup\$
    – gto
    Apr 9 at 3:24
  • \$\begingroup\$ @gto I never said they weren't? They just don't have written descriptions. The list at the end of the paragraph are items without anything at all \$\endgroup\$ Apr 9 at 10:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ Ah. I would argue that they aren't exactly "undefined" since they at least have an associated cost and heft -- but, even so, the Chain and the Mess Kit do have written descriptions on pages 151 and 152 of the PHB. \$\endgroup\$
    – gto
    Apr 10 at 11:08

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