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Quicksilver, also known as mercury,[1] is a rare metallic liquid.


Quicksilver is a rare material often found in a wizard's laboratory, or in the possession of an alchemist or physician. It and can be typically acquired in a town or market, or specially ordered.[2][3]

It is mined from cinnabar, a soft red mineral also used in dyes.[4]

The price of quicksilver varies by availability. It sells for a price of around 10 gp,[2] or between 25 gold pieces[5] and 2.5 gold pieces per ounce.[1] It is commonly stored in glass vials, with a single vial costing perhaps 100 gp.[6] Vials are known as large as one pound of quicksilver, worth 500 gp.[7]


Quicksilver is used primarily as a magical or alchemical component, and often only a few drops are used at a time.

It is a material component used in the spells symbol, Tenser's floating disk, true polymorph,[8] contingency,[9], polymorph any object,[10] undead alacrity,[11] undead battlemight,[12] chain contingency,[13] and lightning reflection.[14]

A vial of the substance can be used to extend the duration of cat's grace and mass cat's grace, costing as much as 940 gp for a sufficient quantity.[15]

It is used in the production of several magic items, including the candle of reflection,[16] scrolls of haste,[17]

It is used in the construction of the silver golem, a creature whose body is filled with the substance, granting it great speed;[18] the elemental omshirim;[19] the merchurion colossus,[20] the mercury wasp,[21] and the shardsoul slayer.[22]

It can be combined with acid to form quick sear, a dangerous and unpredictably flowing liquid.[23] It is used in alchemy to extract gold from ore, and to separate gold from silver.[4]

Quicksilver can be used in the crafting of specialist weapons. The mercurial greatsword and mercurial longsword are designed with a hollow channel which contains flowing mercury, making the blade heavier when swung.[24] Skilled smiths can create hammers and other weapons similarly filled with a mixture of quicksilver and iron filings; the hammer Rejavik, crafted by the legendary smith Athdar Steelbreaker, is one such weapon.[25]

Alchemical quicksilver capsules are also made which coat a weapon quickly in silver.[26]

The interior of the philosopher's stone is lined with quicksilver.[27]

Quicksilver blocks the talisman of divining, crafted by the ancient Necromancer Kings.[28]

An ounce of quicksilver may serve as a portal key to the astral plane.[29]

Cultural significance[]

Avachel, male aspect of the dragon goddess Aasterinan, is given the title Quicksilver.[30] The silver dragon deity Rais is also given the title Quicksilver.[31]

The mercury dragon is named for this substance. It is also part of the name of the individual mercury dragon Mera Quicksilver.[32]

The quicksilver lizard is named for this substance.[33]

The quicksilver armor,[34] quicksilver blade,[35] quicksilver cloak,[36] quicksilver boots,[37] and the legendary Quicksilver Hourglass[38] are named for this substance.

"Quicksilver" is the nickname of the rogue-mage Leonardo Valloch.[39]

The dwarven warriors of the Klar in Krynn honor their greatest warriors in a ritual in which they are immersed in quicksilver,[40] a habit which makes them mad.[41]

Quicksilver is the namesake of the battle maneuvers quicksilver motion,[42] quicksilver stance,[43] quicksilver lunge,[44] and quicksilver blade.[45]

The psionic quicksilver demon is a specialist in fast and unpredictable movement in battle.[46] The mercurial assassin is likewise named for the substance.[47]

Quicksilver is often used metaphorically to describe a quick-tempered person, something quick or fast-moving, something or difficult to grasp or hold steady, any reflective pool, the mirrorlike eyes of certain creatures, or flowing silver hair.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Greyhawk Adventures (1988), p.105.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Player's Option: Spells & Magic (1996), p.74-75.
  3. Living in a material world, Dragon #81 (Jan 1984), p.62.
  4. 4.0 4.1 In a Cavern, In a Canyon..., Dragon #152 (Dec 1989), p.23.
  5. Best of Dragon Vol. IV (1985), p.38.
  6. Die Vecna Die! (2000), p.21.
  7. The Book With No End, Dungeon #3 (Jan/Feb 1987), p.57.
  8. Player's Handbook (5e) (2014), p.282.
  9. Player's Handbook (3.5) (2003), p.213.
  10. Player's Handbook (3.5) (2003), p.263.
  11. The Complete Book of Necromancers (1995), p.78.
  12. Priest's Spell Compendium Volume Three (2000), p.668.
  13. Wizard's Spell Compendium Volume One (1996), p.128.
  14. Wizard's Spell Compendium Volume Two (1997), p.518.
  15. Unearthed Arcana (3e) (2004), p.141.
  16. Encyclopedia Magica Volume One (1994), p.244.
  17. FOR8 Pages from the Mages (1995), p.62.
  18. Monstrous Compendium: Mystara Appendix (1994), p.54.
  19. Savage Coast Monstrous Compendium Appendix (1996).
  20. Monster Manual V (2007), p.102.
  21. Bazaar of the Bizarre, Dragon #384 (Feb 2010), p.22.
  22. Monster Manual V (2007), p.150.
  23. Dungeon Master's Guide 2 (4e) (2009), p.61.
  24. Arms and Equipment Guide (3e) (2003), p.8.
  25. Dragon Annual 2000 (1998), p.30.
  26. Complete Adventurer (2005), p.122.
  27. Unearthed Arcana (1e) (1985), p.101.
  28. The Complete Book of Necromancers (1995), p.103.
  29. Dragon Annual 1 (1996), p.79-80.
  30. Demihuman Deities (1998), p.100.
  31. SJR6 Greyspace (2e) (1992), p.92.
  32. FOR1 Draconomicon (2e) (1990), p.121,125.
  33. Drow of the Underdark (3e) (2007), p.133.
  34. Player's Handbook 3 (2010), p.199.
  35. Adventurer's Vault 2 (2009), p.21.
  36. Wormfood, Dragon #342 (Apr 2006), p.68.
  37. Magic Item Compendium (2007), p.119.
  38. Multiple Dementia, Dragon #353 (Mar 2007), p.39.
  39. 1993 TSR Trading Cards #163.
  40. Dwarven Kingdoms of Krynn (1993), p.66.
  41. Mordenkainen's Tome of Foes (2018), p.72.
  42. Tome of Battle: The Book of Nine Swords (2006), p.65.
  43. Martial Power (2008), p.16.
  44. Martial Power (2008), p.28.
  45. Forgotten Realms Player's Guide (2008), p.33.
  46. Psionic Power (2010), p.50.
  47. Power of Dragons, Dragon #385 (Mar 2010), p.7.