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Is there anything in 3.5e lore about a mortal ingesting the body parts or blood of a Deity? Or the effects that something like that would have on a PC?

For context, I play a Dragonborn Bard in possession of a jar of "dragon ichor" and some eye juice from the eye I stole from the corpse of Tiamat, and I've been considering mixing the two and drinking them. Obviously, this precise sequence of events has never occurred before in D&D history, but has anything remotely similar happened in D&D lore? Any situation in which a mortal ingested a portion of a deity.

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    \$\begingroup\$ This is a plot development of your DM’s own devising, and there’s no way we could know what they have in store for you. It might be possible to speculate in a somewhat educated manner, pointing to similar events in D&D lore, but even if it would be, this site’s format and rules don’t allow for speculation. You could maybe try to turn this into a history question, asking after lore around consuming or using the body parts of gods? \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented May 29, 2022 at 13:51
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    \$\begingroup\$ Personally, I recommend you ask in afroakuma’s thread—he’s an expert on 2e-3e lore, and a discussion forum is a much better place for this kind of speculation. (Though honestly, he too might just be like “it could be anything, totally up your DM.”) \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented May 29, 2022 at 13:51
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    \$\begingroup\$ I don't think you need hypothetically. I mean, you gotta drink it, right? First rub some of it on a normally covered part of your body (or someone else's body) and wait a week and then drink it, of course, but there's no way this remains a hypothetical. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 29, 2022 at 14:02
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    \$\begingroup\$ Inquiring about similar lore/history is probably the best option, as it is subject to DM digression at the end of the day. I appreciate the input. \$\endgroup\$
    – Watson
    Commented May 29, 2022 at 16:09
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    \$\begingroup\$ Catholicism has entered the chat. \$\endgroup\$
    – order
    Commented May 31, 2022 at 3:03

3 Answers 3

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Absorbing a God's Power? Yes

We've got some examples of this, most pertinently the Birthright Campaign Setting in 2E, which received a bit of updating in Dragon Magazine. We've also got the Lich-Queen Vlaakith, who works to slowly absorb the power of the god-corpse known as The One in the Void. In both of these cases, there is no ingestion, and the process involved provides only a fraction of the power of the divine. Let's look at what we could do with this.

Mythological Antecedents

The most obvious one that comes to mind involves a popular religion where bread and wine are transubstantiated on ingestion into the flesh and blood of a divine avatar. Not only is this super safe, it's also a way of reinforcing a covenant between the human doing the ingesting and the deity doing the transubstantiating. Mind you, there are a looooot of filters here, most importantly that the physical material in question is not actually any body part of a divinity. That property is, under many readings, considered to be conferred onto baser materials in a spiritual sense.

More interesting to me is the mythological pattern of creatures or divine beings whose blood is incredibly dangerous - from the corrosive blood of Fafnir to the toxic blood of the Hydra and the basilisk to the regenerative blood of the Asura Raktavija. The Greek gods were known to share this property - the ethereal fluid that flowed in their veins, ichor, was said to bring guaranteed death to any mortal who touched it.

Back to Birthright

Now, in the Birthright campaign setting, the deaths of the old gods caused their divine essence to explode outward and get absorbed into the mortal armies who surrounded them on that fateful day. Fractions of divine power fused with the very blood of these mortals, creating bloodlines who can pass down some sliver of their own power to their descendants.

More interestingly, and closer to your question but still a bit away from it, is that those possessed of such a blood heritage could absorb strength from others so empowered in a Highlander-esque manner - by dealing out a deathblow to a rival with a stab through the heart, the victor would take a piece of the loser's blood strengh, potentially gaining new powers in the act of having done so. Even under optimal circumstances, the full power of the defeated mortal would never transfer over (best case is about half).

Part of this fun with godly essence is that those possessed of blood powers could potentially link with the land, creating a pseudo-divine realm for themselves tied to their will, a process called Regency.

But the Cosmic Cocktail? The Divine Draught?

...has strictly speaking not happened in D&D lore that I can tell, hence the inferences above. We can see that the mythology that inspires D&D has some things to say about ingesting god juice being a very poor plan, as well as that D&D has some notions about godly powers being transferred in some lesser capacity through blood (though not in a directly vampiric way).

My Recommendation

Based on all of the above, I would like to make an important posit: god-stuff is not something to toy with lightly, and directly ingesting it is likely a fantastically excellent idea if you're into suicide and an abominably stupid idea if you're not. However, we can look at the Birthright principles of investiture (a way of choosing to pass on your blood powers to another through a ritual) and usurpation (performing a specific stabby act on another's heart to get blood power) and notice that there's something of a process to go through that makes it all work. Similarly, if we look back at the Sacrament of Communion, nobody's wandering up to a tabernacle and snacking on Eucharist like potato chips - it gets brought to an altar, blessed by a priest, prayed over, and presented in a holy sacrament. It's a process - there is a ritual to be observed around the ingestion of the essence of the divine.

Therefore, what I would suggest - and yes, this would involve working with the DM, as needs must - is that absent appropriate preparations, ingesting a Tiamat Tonic should very very rapidly kill you deader than dead. However, through research and preparation, your character should be able to discover or otherwise devise a rite that can be followed, likely involving the inclusion of other magical ingredients to stabilize the mixture and prevent it from immediately murdering you, which upon imbibing should confer some amount of unique power. God-level? No, the godhead is not so easily transferred as that. Superhuman? Absolutely.

Given that it's Tiamat, you might find such a cocktail gives you draconic eyes and turns your skin scaly. Perhaps it imparts the half-dragon template and some unique spell-like or supernatural abilities. It should be expensive and dangerous - that's what makes such endeavours feel earned, worthwhile, and of course fair to your fellow players at the table. Some other notions include:

  • Being able to charm or cause fear in chromatic dragons with your gaze.
  • A breath weapon that can manifest as any of the five chromatic dragon's breath weapons.
  • Access to protection from energy to let you gird yourself against breath weapons.
  • Spell resistance.
  • Frightful presence.
  • A supernatural ability to detect chromatic dragons from far away.
  • A supernatural ability to detect gold, gems, and other forms of wealth.
  • Enhanced ability scores.
  • Natural armor.

Your DM is of course welcome to say "no," but at the very least you have a basis for exploring this idea with them. The remnants of a god are basically relics in a literal sense (see definition 3) and there are good thematic, mythological, and lore-adjacent reasons to imagine that ingesting such a thing could have a powerful effect.

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Ask your DM

There is no mechanic related to this.

There is no official lore that would give a solid basis for speculation as to the result.

It is entirely unclear why you think it would do anything; which suggests that you have either run into some lore/mechanics peculiar to your table, or have built up some headcanon with the same effect. In either case, assuming this has any basis at all, that basis is peculiar to the game run by your DM.

So, ask your DM.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ This is a lore question asking for examples of this sort of thing happening in the official canon. I don’t know if it has or not, but you aren’t answering the question. The question you are responding to was the original question, which would have been closed for exactly this reason. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented May 30, 2022 at 2:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ Besides, if the DM is any good, all he's going to say is "You have to drink it to find out..." This may or may not be accompanied by a sinister smile and maniacal laugh. \$\endgroup\$
    – ruffdove
    Commented Jun 3, 2022 at 18:43
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Yes, there is lore regarding the ascension of mortals with hints of how it was accomplished.

Greyhawk has a long tradition of mortals elevating to deity status, there are even three specific classifications or rankings for such: The Demi-god, the Hero-God, and the Quasi-Deity.

(World of Greyhawk boxed set, and Greyhawk Players Guide, both AD&D.)

There is also a 2nd edition 12th level spell for ascending to godhood. (Netheril Empire of Magic)

Furthermore, the Forgotten Realms also has lore regarding this, considering that the Goddess of Magic has changed a couple of times, and during the Time of Troubles several deities died and a handful of mortals ascended to divinity.


The influence of this lore has survived into the 3rd edition, and is touched on in the Deities & Demigods source book (Greyhawk is the default campaign setting for 3rd), wherein several possible methods are offered and the final decision on mechanics (and lore) is left for the DM to decide. Forgotten Realms has also preserved this lore in the 3rd edition. (Campaign Setting book, Faith and Avatars book)

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    \$\begingroup\$ Did any of these ascended mortals get that way by drinking a god shake? \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 30, 2022 at 14:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ Who asked about morals ascending to godhood? I see nothing about that in the question. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented May 30, 2022 at 15:41
  • \$\begingroup\$ @HeyICanChan I believe that happened in Forgotten Realms. \$\endgroup\$
    – nijineko
    Commented Jun 1, 2022 at 0:50

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