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Necromancy (also referred to as the dark arts[1][2] or the black arts)[3] the study and use of magic to raise and control the dead.[4] Necromantic magic (or necrotic and death magic) has many functions beyond simply raising the dead. Masters of this tainted field of magic can conjure festering diseases, harness the shadows into bolts of incendiary energy, and chill the living with the power of death. Necromancy can also be used to reconstruct the flesh and bones of undead creatures, allowing them to function again even after the foul monsters have been destroyed.[5] Few things are as abhorrent and horrifying as necromancy.[4]

Death, in the form of necromantic magic, acts as a counterbalance to life. It is an unavoidable force that breeds despair in mortal hearts and pushes everything towards a state of entropic decay and eventual oblivion. It is represented by the Shadowlands, the realm of spirits of the dead.[6]

The most known practitioners of necromancy are necromancers, death knights, and warlocks. Other practitioners include necrolords, necrolytes,[7] neophytes, deathspeakers, and other variations like necrotechs, necrothurges, and necroliths.

The Plague of undeath and the New Plague have shown instances of raising the fallen into undeath.

Nathrezim are skilled in necromancy.

Liches wield frost magic along with their own considerable necromantic spells.


Mogu in N [110 - 120] Ancient Crypt Key

Drust and witch death magic...

RPG from Skeletal creature.

The RPG Icon 16x36.png Ogre mage


 [Draenei Tail]

Expedition Armory

Organizations practicing necromancy include the Scourge, Cult of the Damned, Shadow Council, and the Knights of the Ebon Blade.

Overview of use

On Draenor, during the rise of the Old Horde, Gul'dan opened a school of necromancy for orcs under the tutelage of Kil'jaeden.[8]

While under the possession of Sargeras, the corrupt Medivh delved into the forbidden arts of necromancy as well.

Later, Temples of the Damned were used by the first death knights to study necromancy. And was used in the First and Second Wars.

After being transformed into the Lich King, Ner'zhul used his necromantic powers to raise the fallen nerubians

By the time of the Third War, Thrall had banned the use of necromancy in the New Horde. However, the archmage Kel'Thuzad turned to necromancy, abandoning the Kirin Tor, but giving rise to the Cult of the Damned.

In the RPG

In an interview about Dark Factions with Luke Johnson, he said that dark inscribers use runes to channel necromantic and/or demonic magic.[9]


See also


Check Lands of Mystery, pg. 112

A chieftain must always do what is best for his people.
Warcraft: Novelization, chapter 15

Chieftains (or chiefs) are the leaders of a clan or a tribe. The female is Chieftess.[10][11]



Main universe

The orcs of Draenor led their respective clans as chieftains. During the rise of the Horde, majority of the chieftains and their clans united into the Old Horde serving under a warchief. In the New Horde led by Thrall, the clan system was by and large abolished. Although many orcs still proudly carry the name of their clan, the clans themselves are all united under the banner of one Horde.[12]

Name Affiliation Status
Neutral  Blackhand Blackrock clan Deceased
Horde  Orgrim Doomhammer Blackrock clan Deceased
Neutral  Dal'rend Blackhand Blackrock & Black Tooth Grin clans Deceased
Neutral  Maim Blackhand Blackrock & Black Tooth Grin clans Deceased
Neutral  Kilrogg Deadeye Bleeding Hollow clan Deceased
Neutral  Hurkan Skullsplinter Bonechewer clan Deceased
Mob  Tagar Spinebreaker Bonechewer clan Killable
Mob  Zuluhed Dragonmaw clan Deceased
Mob  Nek'rosh Skullcrusher Dragonmaw clan Presumed Deceased
Neutral  Garad Frostwolf clan Deceased
Neutral  Durotan Frostwolf clan Deceased
Horde  Thrall Frostwolf clan (former) Alive
Neutral  Kargath Bladefist Shattered Hand clan Deceased
Neutral  Fenris Wolfbrother Thunderlord clan (former) Unknown
Neutral  Garm Wolfbrother Thunderlord clan Deceased / Active
Neutral  Ner'zhul Shadowmoon clan Deceased
Neutral  Gul'dan Stormreaver clan Deceased
Mob  Garrosh Hellscream The Mag'har Deceased
Horde  Grommash Hellscream Warsong clan Deceased
Neutral  Zagrel Whiteclaw clan Deceased

Alternate universes

WoW-novel-logo-16x62.png This section concerns content related to the Warcraft novels, novellas, or short stories.

During the Cataclysm, Thrall traveled to alternate timeways of Azeroth and found Durotan and Orgrim. In another timeway, Orgrim was killed by Aedelas Blackmoore.

Warlords of Draenor This section concerns content related to Warlords of Draenor.

In the alternate Draenor, as Grommash Hellscream moved to lead the Iron Horde, Garrosh Hellscream was named warlord in his stead, which he gladly accepted.[13] In fact, the orc leaders of the Iron Horde all bore the title warlord during the war in Draenor instead of chieftain. Despite this, Blackhand, Ner'zhul, Durotan, Fenris Wolfbrother were still directly referred to as chieftains in rare occasions.

Name Affiliation Status
Mob  Grommash Hellscream Warsong clan (formerly) Alive
Mob  Blackhand Blackrock clan Deceased
Mob  Kilrogg Deadeye Bleeding Hollow clan Deceased
Mob  Ner'zhul Shadowmoon clan Deceased
Horde  Durotan Frostwolf Orcs Alive
Mob  Fenris Wolfbrother Thunderlord clan Deceased
Neutral  Garad Frostwolf Orcs Deceased
Neutral  Mother Om'ra Shadowmoon clan Deceased / Active
Neutral  Rulkan Shadowmoon Exiles Alive
Mob  Kargath Shattered Hand clan Deceased
Mob  Ner'zhul Shadowmoon clan Deceased
Mob  Dharl Burning Blade clan Deceased

Film universe

Icon-film-40x16.png This section concerns content exclusive to the Warcraft film universe and is considered non-canon.

Stub.png Please add any available information to this section.

Name Affiliation Status
Mob  Blackhand Blackrock clan Deceased
Mob  Kilrogg Deadeye Bleeding Hollow clan Alive
Mob  Rokuk Frostwolf clan Deceased
Mob  Durkosh Frostwolf clan Deceased
Mob  Garad Frostwolf clan Deceased
Mob  Durotan Frostwolf clan Deceased
Mob  Kargath Bladefist Shattered Hand clan Alive
Mob  Grommash Hellscream Warsong clan Alive
Mob  Gul'dan Horde Alive
Red Walker clan



Bladespire clan
Twilight's Hammer


Main article: Tauren chieftain

The tauren leaders are tauren chieftains or chiefs who are united under a high chieftain.

  • IconSmall Baine.gif AU Baine Bloodhoof


  • The taunka have sub-chieftains, chieftains, and are united under a high chieftain.

Chieftain Swiftspear


Some furbolgs are lead by a chieftain.[14]


Murlocs have chieftains.[15]


The Lost Ones have chieftains in their tribes.[16][17]


Troggs have chieftains.[18][19][20]


Gorlocs have chieftains.[21][22]


Vrykul have chieftains.[23][24]



The following races have at least one chietain:



As evidenced by Khan Ablinh, Khan Blizh, and the  [Spear of the Kolkar Khan], centaur khans are often considered chieftains.


Ice trolls have chieftains also.[28]

The Tauren Chieftains

The Tauren Chieftains is a metal band that has members from the Horde.


In the RPG

The RPG Icon 16x36.png This section contains information from the Warcraft RPG which is considered non-canon.

Chieftain is a genderless title.[29]


Jungle trolls chieftains are at the top of the hierarchy,[30] the young trolls can hope of becoming one;[31] a chieftain is first and foremost a powerful and highly respected individual who has proved again and again his invaluableness to the tribe,[30] each tribe has a chieftain.[32] Forest trolls are also led by chieftains, a single chieftain rules each tribe, every village has at least one witch doctor or priest, who acts as an advisor or, occasionally, the chieftain.[33] Ice trolls chieftains follow the Frost King.[34]


The ogre clans are commonly lead by a chieftain[35][36] a single chieftain rules the clan,[37] but their leadership rarely last long,[36] the ogre magis act as their advisors.[36] It is unknown if the half-ogres have chieftains, but Rexxar became the chieftain of the Stonemaul clan.[37]


Dark Iron dwarves are led by chieftains.[38]



This article or section includes speculation, observations or opinions possibly supported by lore or by Blizzard officials. It should not be taken as representing official lore.
  • It could be speculated that the Warlords of the Iron Horde chose to use the title warlord as a homage to their leader's past, which earned him the moniker warlord with the iron will. As Grommash didn't become the main leader of the Old Horde in the main universe, the chieftains didn't need to honor him and continued to use the regular title.
  • Teron Gorefiend, being leader of the Shadowmoon clan]], could be referred to as chieftain, but nothing states so.
  • Mogor, being leader of the Laughing Skull clan, could be referred to as chieftain, but nothing states so.
  • Jubei'Thos, being leader of the Blackrock clan, could be referred to as chieftain, but nothing states so.
  • Leoroxx, being leader of the Mok'Nathal clan of half-orcs / half-ogres, could be referred to as chieftain, but nothing states so.