Callum wielding a Primal Stone and Claudia summoning dark magic

Magic is the mystical force that exists within the world of The Dragon Prince. It exists everywhere in the lands of Xadia. All magical creatures in Xadia are born connected to one of the six Primal Sources of magic, and as such, have certain powers and abilities based on their respective Primal Source.

Humans are not born with the ability to cast magic, but some can cast spells and control a Primal Source by using a magical artifact such as a Primal Stone.[1] Other humans, rather than directly harnessing the Primal Sources, choose to rely on the magical energy contained within magical creatures, extracting it for dark magic.

Mages

Mages are individuals who can harness and command the force of magic. The Primal Source that mages draw from determines the spells they can cast. Experienced elven mages can cast spells without the need for a magical artifact such as a Primal Stone, though not all elves reach this level of skill and have to spend years cultivating a deep connection with their Arcanum, as well as honing their magic,[2] which includes practicing proper casting of runes and draconic incantations. This knowledge permits them not only to cast spells, but to channel primal energy in order to perform magical feats, such as illusions, super-strength, or flight.

Mages inside Xadia do not differentiate between different titles such as "wizards" and "sorcerers". Instead, "mages" is used as a general term.[3] Depending on their primal connection, mages serve different roles. For instance, according to Rayla, moon mages are illusionists, while sky mages can be acrobats, dancers, or thieves.[4]

Humans are generally born without a primal connection and are reduced to using magical artifacts, such as Primal Stones, to summon elemental magic. Despite this, several human dark mages exist inside the five Human Kingdoms.[5]

Rather than directly drawing upon the Primal Sources, dark mages choose to absorb the essence from magical creatures and use it to cast dark magic. To make up for their lack of a primal connection, some dark mages are known to study magic through books and tomes, spending time in the library learning spells or gathering materials and components needed to perform magic.

Mages can have varying degrees of power, but the most powerful mages are called "Archmages". A notable Archmage is Aaravos, a Startouch Elf, due to his ability to perform magic of all six Primal Sources, as well as dark magic. It is currently unclear how he acquired these powers or if other Archmages exist.

Notable Mages

Primal Sources

The Primal Sources are enormous, powerful entities of the natural world: the Sun, the Moon, the Stars, the Earth, the Sky, and the Ocean. All magic in the world comes from and draws upon the six Primal Sources. A mage can draw upon these sources to cast different spells; for example, drawing from the magic of the Sky Primal allows a mage to cast wind and thunderstorm spells. All the magical creatures of Xadia possess a naturally strong connection to one of the Primal Sources, and as such, have magic powers and abilities that reflect that source.[6] Each magical creature in Xadia possesses a connection with their source, called an Arcanum. This is described by Lujanne as "the secret of the Primal, or its meaning."

The Sun

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Sun magic draws from the heat and energy of the Sun. This source is at its strongest when the sun is at its highest. Sun magic has a dual nature: it can conjure spells of light, growth, nurturing, and transformation — or it can call upon fire, heat, and destruction. Sun mages can learn to master light and fire through strength of will, and some of the most powerful can use the light to heal and purify or banish sickness and decay. However, they must maintain diligent control of their emotions and impulses.[4]

Creatures connected to the Sun Primal, such as Sunfire Elves, are often intense and charismatic and make natural leaders.[6] The Sun is associated with energy, teaching, truth, fury, warmth, honesty, intensity, charisma, leadership, optimism, revealing, and guiding light.[7]

The Moon

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Moon magic draws on the spirit and energy of the Moon. The Moon is cyclical in its strength, relating directly to the lunar phases. This source is at its strongest during a full moon, and its Arcanum is understanding the true nature of the relationship between appearances and reality.[7]

Moon magic deals in creating illusions, concealment spells, and connections with spirits. Some moon mages are illusionists, using their powers to befuddle and confuse their enemies' senses. Simple illusion spells can fool the eyes and ears, but more powerful illusions can mimic even taste or touch. Moon mages can also conjure flickers of the past or put restless spirits to rest. Moon mages understand that all shadows are born of light, and to reach for light is to cast a shadow.[4]

Creatures connected to the Moon Primal, like Moonshadow Elves, can be private and secretive, and are keenly aware of the power of appearances.[6] The Moon is associated with illusion, manipulation, love, death, charm, reflection, privacy, appearances, depth, duality, and secrets.[7]

The Stars

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Star magic draws on the vast and timeless power of the cosmos.[6] According to Rayla, star magic might be the most powerful type of magic. Star magic is little understood, and the study of the Stars is made more difficult by the scarcity of magical creatures connected to them, including only Startouch Elves and unicorns.[4] It is unknown when this source is at its strongest and the only elf seen so far with this power is the Archmage Aaravos.

Star magic is sometimes called "celestial magic" or "cosmic magic",[7] as it involves divination, cosmic vision, and seeing into the "beyond".[6] Star mages are extremely rare - only one star mage may be born in generations. No other creatures except Startouch Elves have understood the Star Arcanum, and unlike with other Primal Sources, human mages have exhausted themselves by just trying to express the concept in words.[4]

The Stars are associated with vision, truth, intelligence, otherworldly, reality-altering, timelessness, mystery, destiny, and wishes.[7]

The Earth

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Earth magic draws on the power and energy within the land itself. This source is at its strongest deep underground. Earth magic comes from two major domains: the stone, minerals, crystals, and gems of the land, and the flora and fauna of the living world.

Creatures connected to the Earth Primal, like Earthblood Elves, are patient, sometimes stubborn, and care deeply about the history and balance of the natural world.[6] The Earth is associated with strength, patience, endurance, healing, stubbornness, growth, deep history, and balance.[7]

The Sky

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Sky magic draws on the vast sky, the energy and movement of the winds, and the power of thunderstorms. This source is at its strongest during a storm, and its Arcanum is understanding that the sky is everywhere and that you are within it and part of it, taking it into you with your breathing.

Sky magic is sometimes called "weather magic", though it is more than that. While sky mages can summon wind, lightning, ice, or shrouding fog, their power is not limited to the weather. It also includes magic that helps one breathe at high altitudes, and a talented sky mage can magically enhance their movement, allowing bursts of speed and leaps of great length. Even with limited physical training, a sky mage can learn to perform feats of incredible agility, making them excellent acrobats, dancers, and sometimes thieves.[4] The most powerful among sky mages can transform their own arms into wings, giving them the ability to fly.[7]

Creatures connected to the Sky Primal, like Skywing Elves, are typically quick and clever and prize the freedom to make their own choices in life.[6] The Sky is associated with lightness, quickness, agility, cleverness, vision, potential, freedom, and perspective.[7]

The Ocean

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Ocean magic draws on the depths of the oceans and tides, and its power connects through rivers and lakes that flow back to it. This source is at its strongest at high tide. It is is associated with flexibility, transformation, flow, surface-level vs depth, navigation, and awareness. Besides water spells, it also includes ice spells.[7]

Creatures connected to the Ocean Primal, such as Tidebound Elves, often forge strong connections to others, and can have hidden depths. Ocean mages can reflect the nature of their home: A swamp mage and a river mage would look different, though they both connect to the same Primal Source.[6]

Dark Magic

Main Article: Dark Magic

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Dark magic, also known as the seventh source, is a wicked and heinous form of magic that does not directly connect to the Primal Sources. Instead, it draws upon the primal energy within magical creatures themselves to fuel spells. Unlike the six Primal Sources which each have a specific nature, dark magic is more versatile and has many uses. At its most extreme, it was even capable of resurrecting someone from the dead.[8] Dark magic spells are normally cast through incantations in which the mage speaks in reverse. It is considered a cheap, fast, and easy way of casting magic and always requires an act of destruction and consumption to accomplish.[9]

First used by a human mage named Ziard, who was in the possession of a relic staff gifted by one of the "Great Ones", it was used to shield Elarion from famine and its enemies. The ease and potency of dark magic eventually caused human dark mages to hunt and poach magical creatures to harvest their magic energy. Horrified by the practice, the elves and the dragons of Xadia divided the continent and drove all humans to the West, where it continued to be part of human culture.[6]

Spells

Casting Spells

Main Article: Spells

The act of casting a spell is done by harnessing the energy of a Primal Source or a magical creature and then directing that energy toward accomplishing a particular goal, often through the use of runes or incantations. Primal spells are typically cast through Ancient Draconic incantations and runes, whereas dark magic spells are often cast through incantations, in which the mage speaks backward. Rayla has elaborated on the process of casting Primal spells, explaining that to cast Primal spells, a caster would require a storm or at least a strong breeze if they are not in the possession of a Primal Stone.[10] A mage must harness a certain amount of primal energy to cast a spell. Runes must be drawn by hand precisely, and the magic itself is sometimes tied to the physical ability of the user, just like "Aspiro" requires the mage to blow air from their lungs, and "Manus. Pluma. Volantus." require a mage to use their arms to fly.

If a mage is attacked before completing a spell, it will be canceled out.[8]

Like in the case of Aaravos, Archmages have a high-level mastery of magic and are therefore capable of casting spells without an audible incantation.

Known Spells

See: Spells

Magical Artifacts

Main Article: Magical Artifacts

Magical artifacts are often used to harness certain magical properties or abilities and conduct or control various sources of magic or cast spells. Artifacts are mysterious and strange, and not much is known about them. Magical artifacts are diverse in shapes and sizes.

Nexus

A nexus is a location where a certain Primal Source is at its strongest. Each Primal Source has a nexus:

  • The Moon Nexus is a mountaintop lake whose water reflects the full moonlight perfectly. It is located near the ruins of the Moonhenge shrine, a sacred ritual site where ancient Moonshadow Elves would open a path to a shimmering plane between life and death.
  • The Sun Nexus is the Sunforge, a tower located in the heart of the Sunfire Elves' fortified city of Lux Aurea. Its powerful light is fueled by a surrounding field of mirrors that reflect the sun's primal energy into the central orb at the top of the tower. The magic of the Sunforge has been used to infuse weapons with high heat that doesn’t cool for centuries. Ever since Aaravos corrupted the Sunforge, it has been spawning monstrosities all over Lux Aurea.
  • The Sky Nexus is the Storm Spire, a mountain which lies beyond the Midnight Desert and the highest point in all of Xadia. It is a needle of stone that is so tall, it pierces the sky. Ancient Archdragons of the Sky carved a palace out of solid stone inside of it, which became the lair of the current dragon monarchs. From this perch in the sky, the Dragon King and Queen have kept a fearless watch over the magical lands of Xadia.[6]

The nexus locations of the Earth, Ocean, and Star Primals are yet to be revealed.

Trivia

References

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