Wraith (Dungeons & Dragons)

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Alignment Lawful Evil
Type Undead
Image Wizards.com image
Publication history
Based on Wraith

In the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game, the wraith is an undead creature.

Publication history[edit]

The wraith was one of the earliest creatures introduced in the D&D game.

Dungeons & Dragons (1974-1976)[edit]

The wraith was one of the first monsters introduced in the earliest edition of the game, in the Dungeons & Dragons "white box" set (1974), where they were described as high-class wights with more mobility.[1]

Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 1st edition (1977-1988)[edit]

The wraith appears in the first edition Monster Manual (1977),[2] where it is described as an undead, similar to a wight, with a chilling touch that drains life energy.

The soul beckoner, a creature similar to the wraith, is introduced in the module Dark Clouds Gather (1985).

Dungeons & Dragons (1977-1999)[edit]

This edition of the D&D game included its own version of the wraith, in the Dungeons & Dragons Basic Set (1977),[3] and Expert Set (1981 & 1983).[4][5] The wraith was also later featured in the Dungeons & Dragons Game set (1991), the Dungeons & Dragons Rules Cyclopedia (1991),[6] and the Classic Dungeons & Dragons Game set (1994).

Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 2nd edition (1989-1999)[edit]

The wraith appears first in the Monstrous Compendium Volume One (1989),[7] and is reprinted in the Monstrous Manual (1993).[8]

The soul beckoner wraith appears in Monstrous Compendium Greyhawk Appendix (1990).[9]

The desert wraith appeared in the Forgotten Realms campaign setting supplement Old Empires (1990).[10]

The Athasian wraith for the Dark Sun campaign setting appears in Dark Sun Monstrous Compendium Appendix II (1995).[11]

The wraith undead dragon appears in Dragon #234 (October 1996).

Dungeons & Dragons 3.0 edition (2000-2002)[edit]

The wraith appears in the Monster Manual for this edition (2000).[12]

The wraith template appeared in Dragon #300 (October 2002), and included the merfolk wraith as a sample creature.

Savage Species (2003) reprinted the wraith template, including the kobold wraith as a sample creature.[13]

Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 edition (2003-2007)[edit]

The wraith appears in the revised Monster Manual for this edition (2003), and included the dread wraith.

The evolved wraith appears in Libris Mortis: The Book of Undead (2004).[14]

City of Splendors: Waterdeep (2005), for the Forgotten Realms setting, featured the sea wraith. Anauroch: The Empire of the Shade (2007) featured the orb wraith.

The incarnum wraith appeared in Magic of Incarnum (2005).

The acidwraith appeared in Dragon #131 (February 2006).

Dungeons & Dragons 4th edition (2008-2014)[edit]

The wraith appears in the Monster Manual for this edition (2008).[15]

Dungeons & Dragons 5th edition (2014)[edit]

The wraith appears in the Monster Manual for this edition (2014).[16]


A wraith is an incorporeal creature born of evil and darkness, despising light and all living things. A wraith drains the constitution from living creatures, turning them into new wraiths upon death. A wraith is powerless in natural sunlight and will flee from it.

A wraith is always lawful evil. A wraith appears as a sinister, spectral figure robed in darkness. It has no visual features or appendages, except for its glowing red eyes.

D&D Miniatures[edit]

The wraith was included in the D&D Miniatures: Harbinger set #53 (2003).


  1. ^ Gygax, Gary, and Dave Arneson. Dungeons & Dragons (3-Volume Set) (TSR, 1974)
  2. ^ Gygax, Gary. Monster Manual (TSR, 1977)
  3. ^ Gygax, Gary, and Dave Arneson [1974], edited by J. Eric Holmes. Dungeons & Dragons Basic Set (TSR, 1977)
  4. ^ Gygax, Gary, and Dave Arneson [1974], edited by Dave Cook. Dungeons & Dragons Expert Set (TSR, 1981)
  5. ^ Gygax, Gary, and Dave Arneson [1974], edited by Frank Mentzer. Dungeons & Dragons Set 2: Expert Rules (TSR, 1983)
  6. ^ Allston, Aaron, Steven E. Schend, Jon Pickens, and Dori Watry. Dungeons & Dragons Rules Cyclopedia (TSR, 1991)
  7. ^ Cook, David, et al. Monstrous Compendium Volume One (TSR, 1989)
  8. ^ Stewart, Doug, ed. Monstrous Manual (TSR, 1993)
  9. ^ Breault, Mike, ed, et al. Greyhawk Monstrous Compendium Appendix (TSR, 1990)
  10. ^ Bennie, Scott. Old Empires (TSR, 1990)
  11. ^ McCready, Anne Gray. Dark Sun Monstrous Compendium Appendix II: Terrors Beyond Tyr (TSR, Inc., 1995)
  12. ^ Cook, Monte, Jonathan Tweet, and Skip Williams. Monster Manual (Wizards of the Coast, 2000)
  13. ^ Eckelberry, David, Rich Redman, and Jennifer Clarke Wilkes. Savage Species (Wizards of the Coast, 2003)
  14. ^ Collins, Andy and Bruce R Cordell. Libris Mortis (Wizards of the Coast, 2004)
  15. ^ Mearls, Mike, Stephen Schubert, and James Wyatt. Monster Manual (Wizards of the Coast, 2008)
  16. ^ Mearls, Mike, Jeremy Crawford. Monster Manual (Wizards of the Coast, 2014)