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The Lords of the Nine, also called the Lords of Hell, Dukes of Hell,[1] or Lords of the Nine Hells, refers to the nine unique and powerful archdevils who each rule one of the layers of the Nine Hells.

The Lords are referred to by title referring to their realm, such as "Lord of the First".[2] They hold the rank of Archduke or Archduchess, and are each served by lesser archdevils who hold the rank of duke or duchess, serving as advisers and ready to replace their masters should the opportunity arise. They are in turn served by a rigid hierarchy of devils.[3]

All Lords ultimately serve Asmodeus, Dark Lord of Nessus, and are invested with part of his power. Lords are chosen by Asmodeus, and he can remove a Lord at any time and for any reason. Each Lord has near total control over their layer of Hell.[4]

List of Lords of the Nine[]

  • The first layer, Avernus, is ruled by Zariel. In the past, it was ruled by Bel the Pretender, a pit fiend warlord of Zariel who overthrew and imprisoned her for an age; and by chromatic dragon goddess Tiamat.[5][6][7][8]
  • The second layer, Dis, is ruled by Dispater.[5]
  • The third layer, Minauros, is ruled by Mammon.[5] It was once ruled by someone named Viscount Minauros,[9] although that may be an alias for Mammon.
  • The fourth layer, Phlegethos, is ruled jointly by Belial and his daughter Fierna.[5] Fierna is technically its ruler, though Belial, who previously ruled alone, still runs things behind the scenes.[10]
  • The fifth layer, Stygia, is ruled by Levistus. It was previously ruled by Geryon,[5] who gave up hope when Asmodeus deposed him despite his loyalty. Geryon's soul was devoured by Asmodeus, and his vestige is called upon by occultists seeking supernatural powers of sight.[11]
  • The sixth layer, Malbolge, is ruled by Glasya, daughter of Asmodeus. In the past, it was ruled by the Hag Countess Malagard, and Moloch.[5]
  • The seventh layer, Maladomini, is ruled by Baalzebul,[5] formerly known as Triel, the Fallen Archon.[9][12]
  • The eighth layer, Cania, is ruled by Mephistopheles,[5] once known by the alias Molikroth.[13]
  • The ninth layer, Nessus, is ruled by Asmodeus.[5]

The demigod Gargauth the Outcast was once one of the Lords of the Nine.[14][15]

Publication history[]

AD&D 2nd edition[]

The term Lords of the Nine first appeared in Planescape material, where they are detailed in Now You Know Their Names..., Dragon #223 (Nov 1995), p.10-18, Planes of Law, Baator (1995), p.9-13 and Faces of Evil: The Fiends (1997), p.30-32. They are mentioned in Hellbound: The Blood War (1996), p.20 and On Hallowed Ground (1996), p.50-51.

The are detailed in Guide to Hell (1999).

D&D 3rd edition[]

The Lords of the Nine are detailed in Book of Vile Darkness (3e) (2002), p.143-169 and Fiendish Codex II: Tyrants of the Nine Hells (2006). They are attested in such other sourcebooks as the Monster Manual (3.5) (2003), p.151.

D&D 4th edition[]

The Lords of the Nine are detailed in Manual of the Planes (4e) (2008), p.97-106. They are attested in Monster Manual (4e) (2008), p.65, where each is said to command no more than a dozen or so pit fiends, Monster Vault (2010), p.50, Heroes of the Forgotten Kingdoms (2010), p.234-236, and The Plane Above (2010).

Glasya's rise Lord of the Sixth is mentioned in Codex of Betrayal: Glasya, Princess of the Nine Hells, Dungeon #197 (Dec 2011).

D&D 5th edition[]

The Lords of the Nine are listed in the Monster Manual (5e) (2014), p.56-68 and described in great detail in Mordenkainen's Tome of Foes (2018), p.9-23.

References[]

  1. Book of Vile Darkness (3e) (2002), p.143.
  2. Planes of Law, Baator (1995), p.13.
  3. Monster Manual (5e) (2014), p.67-68.
  4. Guide to Hell (1999), p.37.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 5.8 Monster Manual (5e) (2014), p.68.
  6. Faces of Evil: The Fiends (1997), p.30.
  7. On Hallowed Ground (1996), p.51.
  8. Book of Vile Darkness (3e) (2002), p.144.
  9. 9.0 9.1 On Hallowed Ground (1996), p.50.
  10. Book of Vile Darkness (3e) (2002), p.151.
  11. Tome of Magic (3e) (2006), p.32.
  12. Book of Vile Darkness (3e) (2002), p.158.
  13. Faces of Evil: The Fiends (1997), p.32.
  14. Cloak & Dagger (2000), p.72.
  15. Powers & Pantheons (1997), p.22-23.
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