Is the intelligent item Hwyrr, the Clarion Harp from the Book of Exalted Deeds (pg.117) an artifact or just a very powerful magical item?

The way I interpret the personality description leads me to believe that it could be an artifact but since it doesn't actually say the word "artifact" i want to say it isn't one.

The specific part of the description that leads me to belive it could be is "Hwyrr serves Faerinaal as a chronicler of events on the Material Plane. As it finds its way into the hands of different adventuring bards, Hwyrr learns new tales of heroism that it will someday recount to Faerinaal when it finally returns to Queen Morwel’s court.".


1 Answer 1


Buy or create all the Hwyrrs you want

Hwyrr, the Clarion Harp (Book of Exalted Deeds 117) includes as its creation prerequisites the feat Craft Magic Arms and Armor and the spells dismissal, elation, Faerinaal’s hymn, fear, and suggestion. Hwyrr has a price 84,000 gp. The Dungeon Master's Guide on Artifacts, in part, says

The misty past holds many secrets. Great wizards and powerful clerics, not to mention the deities themselves, have used spells and created items that are beyond the ken of present-day knowledge. These items survive as artifacts, but their means of creation are long gone. (277)

A feature of artifacts is that they can't be reproduced. (It's one reason artifacts generally don't have prices attached.) However, Hwyrr's "means of creation" aren't "beyond the ken of present-day knowledge"—it takes those spells; 42,000 gp; 3,360 XP; and 84 days—and, inexplicably, the feat Craft Magic Arms and Armor (which should probably be the feat Craft Wondrous Item like the regular harp of charming but whatever.) In other words, Hwyrr—or another like it—should be available for purchase in any metropolis.

What may be unique is Hwyrr's personality. Intelligent magic items overall are underdetailed in the game (q.v. here and here). When a PC creates (a) Hwyrr, it's the DM's call whether the intelligent item has Hwyrr's personality as printed in Exalted Deeds, a personality that the PC picks or engineers, or a personality that the DM picks.


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