G is for Grimoire - On the keeping of magical records. #atozsofworldbuilding #AtoZChallenge #amwriting #fantasy #worldbuilding Click To Tweet
Visiting for the first time? Make sure to read the introduction to the A-Zs of Worldbuilding Magic Systems!
No matter what type of magic exists in your world, or how it is utilized, knowledge of it will be accumulated and compiled. Magical knowledge is often treated a bit differently than academic knowledge in general, since in the wrong hands it might be very dangerous.
There are exceptions, though. In some worlds or cultures, magic may only be studied informally, or outside an established institution. Perhaps it is passed from a mother to her daughter, or from a master to an apprentice. They may rely on records and journals kept by those before them, and not textbooks.
Whether magical knowledge is passed down through hands-on learning, encoded spell books, or rigorous academic study, the knowledge must be maintained somehow.
What is the most valuable piece of magical knowledge in your fictional world? What form does it take? This might be something passed down through oral tradition, or some obscure spell in a someone’s private journal.
Why might magical knowledge not be recorded?