Dwarf Runes

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Dwarf Runes enable the Dwarfs to temper and bind magical essence in the fires of their forges. [2a]

Dwarfs are extremely resistant to magic and its influence, neither perceiving its presence nor feeling its effects. They have learned to use magic in a different way to other races, by inscribing it onto items such as hammers, axes and armour. The Dwarfs are the most successful of all the races when it comes to making magic items, indeed many of the most powerful magic weapons in circulation in the known world are made by the dwarfs.

Dwarf's who use Runes to create magic items are known as a Runesmith and as Dwarfs have no direct equivalent to a human wizard, they are very important individuals. [2a] Runesmiths are a very ancient guild of craftsmen, and for thousands of years they have preserved the secrets on how to forge magic runes with incredible power.

The Dwarf language, Khazalid, consists of runes, inscriptions specifically designed to be carved in stone or engraved on metal. Magic runes are different to ordinary runes in shape and detail, but much of what makes a rune magical is how and when it is inscribed. These arcane runes trap magical energy - their presence binds and holds magic just as a nail would hold to pieces of wood. [2b]

Especially powerful runes include the awesome master runes and certain secret runes known only to the runesmiths of the temple of Grungni, Grimnir and Valaya. Inscribed into a weapon, the rune may glow or flash, especially when it is unsheathed for battle and although most will fade over time, hundreds or thousands of years, the eternal runes never fade. [2b]


According to the Dwarf Loremaster Ulther Harginsson, in ancient times some Dragons were allies of the Dwarfs, even helping carve out their halls and set Runes into Gromril with dragonfire in exchange for treasure to attract mates. After betrayals by the dragons, the Dwarfs will longer trust the Drakk and so some greater runes can no longer be forged. [1a]

Known Runes

  • Curse Rune: Anyone other than bearer touched by the Rune item is weakened. [7]
  • Dragon Rune: Drakk-Dreng-Rhun: A symbol of a stretched hide and is potent against Dragons, Giants and other monsters. [2d]
  • Grudge Rune: The weapon is extremely deadly to a named individual. [7a][8]
  • Grimnir's Rune: Grimnir-Rhun:. [2f]
  • Grungni's Rune: Grungni-Rhun: first created in Karak Azul. [2f]
  • Iron Rune: Azul-Rhun: The rune seems to depict a furnace. [2e]
  • Master Rune of Adamant: Improves the armour it is inscribed upon. [4a] [8]
  • Master Rune of Balance: Makes casting spells more difficult near the Rune. [7][8]
  • Master Rune of Banishment: Makes the weapon more effective against the Undead. [7]
  • Master Rune of Breaking: Can destroy the inferior weapons of the enemies of the Dwarfs. [8]
  • Master Rune of Calm: This powerful Rune stills the Winds of Magic. [8]
  • Master Rune of Daemon Slaying: Makes the weapon more effective against Daemons. [7]
  • Master Rune of Defence: Reduces the effectiveness of missiles used against the war machine or defensive work it is inscribed upon. [7]
  • Master Rune of Dismay: Talismanic Rune which can only be inscribed on a war horn and when sounded causes foes to tremble and quake in fear. [6]
  • Master of Dragon Slaying: Merely wounding a Dragon will kill it outright. [7][8]
  • Master Rune of Death: Anyone wounded by the weapon is killed. [4a] Said to have been engraved on the weapons with which Grungni slew Urmskaladrak. [6]
  • Master Rune of Discguise: Renders a War Machine almost invisible. [8]
  • Master Rune of Dismay: Enemy unit is immobilised briefly. [4a]
  • Master Rune of Flight: [4a] Used since ancient days to surprise the enemies of the Dwarfs, it enables a weapon to be thrown a considerable distance. [8]
  • Master Rune of Gromril: Greatly increases the resilience of the wearer. [4a][7][8]
  • Master Rune of Grungni: Uses the Winds of Magic to protect the bearer and any nearby Dwarfs. [8]
  • Master Rune of Hesitation: Causes the enemy to pause in their charges against the Dwarf throng. [8]
  • Master Rune of Immolation: Destroys Dwarf war machines that are in danger of being captured. [8]
  • Master Rune of Kingship: Talismanic Rune which must be inscribed on a crown making the wearer and those they lead immune to fear. [6]
  • Master Rune of Misfortune: First created by Duronk the Crafty, Rune activates if the item is ever in possession of anyone other than the Clan or Clans it was made for. [7]
  • Master Rune of Skewering: Increases the accuracy of crossbow or a bolt thrower. [7]
  • Master Rune of Smiting: Preserved in Karak Kadrin within the ancient tome Runedrokikron. [8]
  • Master Rune of Spellbinding: Lower level spells are unable to be cast near this Rune. [7]
  • Master Rune of Spite: First devised by Vikram, [6] Enemies may find their attacks reflected back on themselves. [5][8]
  • Master Rune of Steel: Increases the protection of armour it is inscribed upon. [7]
  • Master Rune of Swiftness: First struck by Thurgrom the Hermit who was the last Runesmith to work in the Elf cities of the Old World. It grants great speed. [6] [8]
  • Master Rune of Taunting: It attempts to force nearby enemies to charge the bearer. [7]
  • Master Rune of Valaya: Any spell cast at the bearer will fail. [7]
  • Mighty Strike: Drengdang-Rhun: May date from the time stone great axes and hammers were used, its form is that of a doubled rune for striking. [2d]
  • Rune of Accuracy: Engineering Rune, may only be inscribed upon a stone-thrower. [6]
  • Rune of Alarm: Should a living creature pass within a yard of the Rune it will sound a very loud alarm. [7]
  • Rune of Battle: Inscribed on a standard. [4a] Once even lesser strongholds and mines inscribed this rune on their banners. [8]
  • Rune of Banishment: Ghull-Dreng-Rhun: Said to have been created by Snorri Spangelhelm and commonly used on the burial goods of Dwarf Lords to prevent intrusion by Ghouls or Wights. [2d][8]
  • Rune of Blasting: Causes a large explosion. [7]
  • Rune of Breaking: It can shatter enemy weapons if its parries them, but does mnot effect natural weapons. [7]
  • Rune of Burning: Engineering Rune, Ammunition fired by the weapon burst into flame when it hits it target. [6][8]
  • Rune of Cleaving: Azz-Rhun: Ancient rune that ignore all non-magical armour. [2d][8]
  • Rune of Communication: A pair of Runes are created together and the holder of each will always know the general direction and distance of the other. [7]
  • Rune of Confusion: The enthusiasm of enemies charging the bearer fades away. [8]
  • Rune of Courage: Kuzz-Rhun: The rune represents the flayed pelt of a beast recalling the time when young dwarfs where required to go out into the wilds and return with the skin of a wild creature which would be made into a banner to provie his courage. [2f] [8]
  • Rune of Cutting: Hakka-Rhun: One of the oldest runes and not attributed to any specific Runesmith, it is likely to have originally been carved on to the wood or bone hilts of stone axes. [2d] [4a]
  • Rune of Disclosure: When inscribed upon a box it will glow if anything false or a forgery. [7]
  • Rune of Disguise: Engineering Rune, it distorts the space around the war-machine keeping it hidden until it fires.[6]
  • Rune of Fate: A portion of the soul of the wearer is kept within a jewel. [7]
  • Rune of Fear: Dwor-Rhun: Invented by Okri Two-Hoards to defend his hoard when he was away. [2f][8]
  • Rune of Fire: The Rune is forged whilst the weapon is still white-hot and bonds the heat of the forge to it. [8]
  • Rune of Forging: Engineering Rune, protects the war-machine from misfires. [6][8]
  • Rune of Fortitude: Increases the health and vitality of the wearer. [7]
  • Rune of Fortune: Akrak-Rhun: Commonly used on axes or swords, it is derived from the rune for promise or bond. [2d] When used on a war-machine helps prevents malfunctions or misfires. [6][8]
  • Rune of the Furnace: Grants immunity to any form of Fire. [4a] [6][8]
  • Rune of Fury: Increases the attack speed of the bearer. [4a][8]
  • Rune of Healing: The wearer slowly regenerates. [7]
  • Rune of Illusion: Inscribed on a Weapon, it grants the holder the appearance of a great and ferocious creature. [7]
  • Rune of Immolation: Engineering Rune that can be used to destroy a war-machine to prevent it falling into enemy hands. [6]
  • Rune of Iron: Increases the toughness of the wearer. [4a] [8]
  • Rune of Kadrin: Often used on standards, it makes the bearer and other Dwarfs less likely to miss. [7]
  • Rune of Luck: [5][6] The Runesmith who first created this Rune is said to have won a fortune gambling. [8]
  • Rune of Locking: Only a Rune of Opening can open a lock with this Rune. [7]
  • Rune of Might: Duruk-Rhun Often used on hammers in Karaz-a-Karak - it is simple in form but several different ancestors are credited with its creation. [2e] [8]
  • Rune of Opening: A temporary rune that can open any lock. [7]
  • Rune of Parrying: Klang-Rhun: Simple and ancient Rune. [2e] [8]
  • Rune of Passage: Vegetation, rocks, snow and mud are cleared aside as the Dwarf advances. [6][8]
  • Rune of Penetrating: Engineering Rune, Increases the power of the war-machine. [6]
  • Rune of Plenty: Makes a container produce more of any one substance or item such as arrows, porridge, sulphur etc. [7]
  • Rune of Preservation: First created to counter the decapitating blows of the swordmasters of the Elves. [8]
  • Rune of Reloading: Makes a war machine almost sentient in its ability to allow repairs. [8]
  • Rune of Resistance: Increases the protection granted by the armour it is inscribed upon. [4a]
  • Rune of Restoration: It can heal Dwarfs or other races, to a lesser extent. [7]
  • Rune of Sanctuary: The Rune grants protection against magic and is often used on standards. [7]
  • Rune of Seeking: Engineering Rune, Bolt Throwers with this Rune are highly accurate against flying targets. [6]
  • Rune of Skewering: First created with the aid of the Elves, they would regret it during the War of Vengeance. [8]
  • Rune of Shielding: Provides additional defence against missiles including magic missiles and spells. [7][8]
  • Rune of Slowness: Anyone attacking the bearer is slowed. [7]
  • Rune of Smiting: Causes brutal wounds. [5]
  • Rune of Spellbreaking: Runesmiths use this to counter enemy magic. [6]I it is said to be created by Grungni and Valaya working together. [8]
  • Rune of Spell Eating: Absorbs and stores the energy of a spell cast at them. [7]
  • Rune of Speed: A weapon moves faster with this rune inscribed upon it. [7][8]
  • Rune of Stalwart: Provides a defence against things that cause fear and terror. [7]
  • Rune of Striking: Dang-Rhun: Ancient rune likely used on the first metal weapons, especially favoured on swords. [2d] [8]
  • Rune of Stone: Increases the protection of the armour it is inscribed upon. [4a] [8]
  • Rune of Swiftness: Alabrin-Rhun: Supposedly stolen from the Elves by Thurgard the Treacherous but its lore is kept secret by his descendants. [2e]
  • Rune of Toughness: Increases the resilience. [5]
  • Rune of Transformation: Allows a weapon to be transformed into another weapon. [7]
  • Rune of Valiant: Provides defence against fear and terror.[7]
  • Rune of Warding: Protects the wearer from magic[7] or wounds.[8]
  • Rune of Warning: The wearer is never surprised by enemies as the Rune will give them a odd feeling if an attack is imminent. [7]
  • Shield Rune: Thrung-Rhun: A shield reinforced by a vertical stroke is the form of the rune and is also similar to the rune for a clan. [2e]
  • Spelleater Rune: Narga-Rhun: Complex rune which is the speciality of Karak Azgal, it is difficult for a rune to be created that can nullify other runes so its lore is kept highly secret. [2f]
  • Stalwart Rune: The crew of the war machine fight harder to defend it. [8]
  • Strollaz' Rune: Dwarfs that march beneath this rune standard are relentless. [8]
  • Valaya's Rune: Valaya-Rhun: Her rune represents a shield and defends against magical attacks. [2f]
  • Za: The Rune of Kingship. [3a]

Name Runes

An object created by a Runesmith is marked with their name and this Name Rune can itself have its own powerful properties. [2c]


Rune weapons can be great two-handed swords or axes, hammers, swords but not lesser weapons such as spears. [2c]


Find the heart of the mountain. Take it on the last day of the third moon. Stoke the furnace at midnight. When the ore glows red. Hammer it before the dawn. Bend seven times the white-hot metal upon itself. recite seven times the rune of forging. Quench in the blood of a dragon. Slake red hot in the quicksilver of Karak Ungol. Do this in the name of Haki the ancestor. Temper in the blood of a Troll slain on the day of Grungni. Bind the hilt with Dragon hide, with the horn inside. Haft the hilt with Azgal's gold, bind with azul-metal. Mark the Orc-fang pommel with the sign of Grimnir. Perform the naming rite with ale upon Valaya's altar. The slaying of a Troll by night will make the rune to glow for a thousand years.

~ Forging a Magic Sword. [2c]


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