The War Hound and the World's Pain

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The War Hound and the World's Pain
War hound and the worlds pain.jpg
Dust-jacket from the first edition
AuthorMichael Moorcock
Cover artistRowena Morrill
CountryUnited States
SeriesUlrich von Bek
Publication date
Media typePrint (Hardback)
823/.914 19
LC ClassPR6063.O59 W3 1981
Followed byThe City in the Autumn Stars 

The War Hound and the World's Pain is a 1981 fantasy novel by English writer Michael Moorcock, the first of the "von Bek" series of novels.

The book is set in Europe ravaged by the Thirty Years' War. Its hero Ulrich von Bek is a mercenary and freethinker, who finds himself a damned soul in a castle owned by Lucifer. Much to his surprise, von Bek is charged by Lucifer with doing God's work, by finding the Holy Grail, the "cure for the world's pain," that will also cure Lucifer's pain by reconciling him with God. Only through doing this can von Bek save his soul.

After many adventures, von Bek eventually finds the Holy Grail, and discovers that it will set mankind on the path to self-redemption through rationality, without the help of God or the hindrance of Lucifer.

The story is continued in The City in the Autumn Stars (1986).