Book of the Vishanti

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Book of the Vishanti
Publication information
Publisher Marvel Comics
First appearance Strange Tales #116 (January 1964)
Created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko
In story information
Type BookMystic item/artifact
Element of stories featuring Doctor Strange

The Book of the Vishanti is a fictional grimoire appearing in Marvel Comics, most closely associated with the character of Doctor Strange.[1]

It is the greatest known source of "white" magical knowledge on the Earth of the Marvel Universe dimension. It contains many spells of defensive magic and is indestructible. Its counterpart, the Dark-hold, which contains all the knowledge of black magic in the Marvel Universe, is likewise indestructible. It is possible to destroy single pages of either book, but the balancing spell in the other book is destroyed as well to maintain a mystical balance. A collective of the three powerful magical beings Agamotto, Oshtur and Hoggoth known as the Vishanti must allow the spell to be destroyed.

Even though the Book of the Vishanti is a tome of benevolent magic, the spells within can still be dangerous when used improperly. This is proven when a young, inexperienced Strange tried to use the Book to resurrect his dead brother Victor, but the spell, known as the Vampiric Verses, caused Victor to become the vampire Baron Blood years later.

Apart from spells and mystical knowledge, the Book of the Vishanti also contains information about persons and events as seen in The Book of the Vishanti back-stories in Doctor Strange vol. 3. It is unknown how the Book is able to contain up to date and recent information even though it was written thousands of years ago.


The Book of the Vishanti was written by unknown authors. It was suggested that the Vishanti themselves may have written it, however, it is more likely that they dictated the text to human students of the white magical arts.

The first known owner of the book was the Atlantean sorcerer Varnae from around 18,500 BC.[2] After his death, Varnae was turned into a vampire by a spell from the book of the Dark hold, making him the first vampire on Marvel Earth.

The next known owner was the Babylonian god Marduk Kurios, who might or might not be the same as Daimon Hellstrom's father Marduk Kurios.[3] Marduk set a griffin to guard the Book. The sorcerer known as the Ancient One traveled back in time to c. 4000 BC[4] and defeated the griffin and returned to the 20th century.

The Ancient One would remain the book's owner, despite a brief loss when the dark wizard Kaluu returned the Book to the Griffin, until he deemed his student, Doctor Strange, worthy of taking it.

Doctor Strange keeps the Book in his town house library in New York City's Greenwich Village. He briefly lost the book when he destroyed his home to prevent the alien wizard Urthona from taking his magical artifacts, but the book was saved by Agamotto , who transported it to his realm and returned it to Strange some time later.


It first appeared in Strange Tales #116 (January 1964) and was created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Sanderson, Peter (2007). The Marvel Comics Guide to New York City. New York City: Pocket Books. pp. 24–27. ISBN 1-4165-3141-6. 
  2. ^ "Unofficial Chronology to the Marvel Universe: Chapter 2". Archived from the original on 26 October 2009. Retrieved 19 March 2015. 
  3. ^ "Marduk bio at the Appendix to the Marvel Universe". Retrieved 2010-09-17. 
  4. ^ "Unofficial Chronology to the Marvel Universe: Chapter 3". Archived from the original on 26 October 2009. Retrieved 19 March 2015.