One of our PCs is going to be raised and we want to describe it

In our next session I think one of the PCs is going to be brought back to life with raise dead. Resurrection is rare in our campaigns. In our current Eberron campaign, in eleven levels there have only been two uses of revivify (one failed!), and this is the first raise dead. In previous campaigns we've either glossed over the details, or it was done by something like wish, and the resurrection just took effect. We typically only focus on descriptions of complicated magics when it is important to the plot or roleplay, and this is one of those times.

We can make our own description

We are perfectly capable of making up our own description, and have mostly done so. We've focused on the resurrected coming back in a weakened state, being very thirsty, and especially initially being unclear as to what has happened. This is an Eberron campaign, and so coming back from Dolurrh has added to the character's confusion. Furthermore, in keeping with the Eberron setting the character will be aware of their experiences in Dolurrh, and will describe a sense of being pulled back, put back together, and being returned to the world.

I'm interested in official (or somewhat official) descriptions of life-restoration magics

I'm interested in official descriptions of raise dead or related life-restoration magics. Recognizing the breadth of material, I'm most interested in canon 5e, particularly Forgotten Realms or Eberron, but would appreciate references to any version, as well as novels or other related material, and while the closer to official the better, I'm willing to squint a bit for things like 3rd party material.

My own research

I've searched here. I've searched the 5e materials on D&D Beyond, and have seen a few references to things like Ankhtepot’s resurrection ritual, but that's really far from the mark. (Although I don't really trust DDB's search....) I have Keith Baker's "Exploring Eberron", which is informative, but doesn't describe life restoration. I've poked at a few other resources from I have from previous editions; I won't catalog them, as they are far from the mark. I've searched the broader internet. I have not searched novels or the vast wealth of previous editions. I am hoping someone has come across something, as opposed to expecting someone to search for me.

What I'm not looking for

To keep things simple, I'm not looking for good-subjective experiences from people's personal games; however, if someone has something particularly worthy, I could ask a separate question.

The question

Are there any official (or semi-offical) descriptions of raise dead or other life restoration spells?


1 Answer 1


The events of Critical Role occur in an official campaign setting, Exandria.

While the events of Critical Role aren’t published in a book by WotC, they are the canonical events of an official campaign setting, Exandria. I’ll let you decide if that’s official or semi-official, whatever that means. There, we see several depictions of resurrection spells, which I’ll put in spoiler blocks.

MATT Okay. As you cast the spell, the diamond shatters in place into thousands of tiny, sparkling glittering beads of light. They all stop in place and float above him. As your hand's out in front, you see a second hand appear. Spectral, green. You see a cloaked arm around it. The Traveler's hand is with you. He pushes your hand forward into this series of sparkles, and it's warm to the touch, and you watch as they all gather around your hand. For just an instant, for just an instant, you feel this presence and you swear amongst the shadows for a split second, you can see this heavy tumbling hair and a matronly smile. In the shadow above, but you blink and it's gone. As you look down, the energy that's around your hand drifts into Caduceus's chest. You see all the sparkling bits of light all going out, hundreds at a time, before all of them have transitioned into his body. There's a pause. The voice in your ear, a familiar voice says, "I'm proud of you." "(gasps)"

The resurrection of Caduceus, episode 2.55.

MATT: In the middle of this chamber, beyond where the containment circle is, you reach down, grasp the symbol of the Traveler, and as you place the diamond onto the chest of Nott's currently lifeless body, you see the diamond crumple black and turn to dust.

LAURA: No, no, no, no.

MATT: As the dust drifts away, you see the hand of the Traveler catch it in the air and then place it onto the chest of Nott's body. The hand gives one hard push on Nott's chest, and in that moment, you watch Nott's body-- (gasps) come back to consciousness.
The resurrection of Nott, episode 2.83

So as you focus and pushing the diamond down towards where the most gaping wound is. You watch as it slowly turns to dust within the wound and become a congealed, like gray material into the exposed blood. There's a moment of pause before the divine energy you channel through the Wildmother creates a mess of vines that begin to grow from the wound and wrap around his torso. As the vines begin to condense and create a small nest or a cocoon above where the wound is, you watch as they turn bright green, then turn brown and die. And wither, the leaves of the vines immediately crumbling and decaying to dust. As they do, leaving the wound, partially healed and you pause for a moment and you hear the breath begin to come back into the lungs.
The resurrection of Fjord, episode 2.98

And of course, many, many more, including one resurrection ritual spanning several episodes.

And since Exandria is an official campaign setting, and these events are canonical to the lore of Exandria, these uses of resurrection magic occurred as described in the D&D multiverse.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks. I listened to what seems like in retrospect years of CR, and never encountered this. Thanks again. \$\endgroup\$
    – Jack
    Mar 13 at 23:27

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