[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/egyptian-tomb11_7753.jpg]]

->''This choice is especially popular among vampires and mummies, although any form of pure evil should find that an ancient tomb makes an easily converted live-work space. The stone halls and Gothic decor will make you the envy of every angst-ridden teenager, and a coffin or mausoleum is usually available for your personal convenience. You can sleep until the foolish adventurers rouse you from your thousand-year slumber, and devour not just them but all mankind.''
-->-- '''How to Be a Villain''', Neil Zawacki

Tombs, burial chambers, sepulchers, mausoleums, charnel houses, ossuaries, catacombs, crypts, sometimes even [[DungeonCrawling dungeons]].

An important stock setting.

Popular in both horror and action-adventure fiction. {{Eldritch Abomination}}s, {{Dracula}}, [[EverythingsDeaderWithZombies zombies]], {{mumm|y}}ies, [[OurGhoulsAreCreepier ghouls]], [[OurDemonsAreDifferent demons]], and other stock horror-movie monsters can often be found here. Usually comes in two varieties; the elaborate AncientTomb built by a similarly-ancient civilization ([[{{Mayincatec}} Aztecs]] and [[AncientEgypt Egyptians]] particularly) with plenty of {{Booby Trap}}s and ancient curses, and a European-style gothic tomb full of gargoyles, [[OurVampiresAreDifferent vampires]], [[DemBones skeletons]], and corpses chained there by petty nobles.

May overlap with IndianBurialGround, and in particularly elaborate cases, TempleOfDoom. Note that a [[SealedEvilInACan can of evil]] or TailorMadePrison may be disguised as, or converted from, a tomb.

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!!Examples:

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[[folder: Comic Books ]]
* Franchise/{{Tintin}} explored these in ''Cigars of the Pharaoh'' and ''Prisoners of the Sun''.
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[[folder: Film ]]
* The ''Franchise/IndianaJones'' series has several.
** RogerEbert in his review of ''Film/RaidersOfTheLostArk'': "For locations, it ticks off the jungles of South America, the hinterlands of Tibet, the deserts of Egypt, a hidden submarine base, an isolated island, a forgotten tomb -- no, make that two forgotten tombs -- and [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking an American archaeology classroom]]."
* Obviously, ''Film/TheMummyTrilogy'' features these settings.
* In ''Film/DrPhibesRisesAgain'', the title character primarily operates out of an Ancient Egyptian tomb.
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[[folder: Literature ]]
* ''Literature/TheLordOfTheRings'' had the Barrow-downs. Much of the underground cities and mines of Moria might also qualify; though not built as a tomb, it ended up as one.
* ''Franchise/StarWars'': Korriban, the desert world, full of Sith tombs, Sith spirits, and living Sith busily using these things to learn [[DangerousForbiddenTechnique new Sith abilities]].
** Note that this is because Korriban is essentially Evil Space Egypt, as the first Sith Lords were exiled Dark jedi who landed on Korriban and [[GodGuise pretended to be the gods of the native Sith people, in the manner of pharaohs]].
** In ''Literature/GalaxyOfFear'', the planet [[IDontLikeTheSoundOfThatPlace Necropolis]] mostly runs to graveyards with garden-variety simple graves. However, the tomb of the {{Necromancer}} [[ShoutOutToShakespeare Sycorax]] is more to this trope.
* In ''[[Literature/TheDalemarkQuartet The Crown of Dalemark]]'' by Creator/DianaWynneJones, an ornate mausoleum sits in the courtyard of the royal palace, housing the body of King Amil the Great, who united Dalemark after a very, very long interregnum.
* Holehallow in the ''Literature/OldKingdom'' series may count as both this and a DerelictGraveyard.
* The writings of Creator/RobertEHoward are absolutely ''full'' of these. The creator and author of ConanTheBarbarian, SolomonKane, and numerous other characters, Howard is considered by many to also be the creator of the SwordAndSorcery genre itself.
* The writings of Creator/HPLovecraft and ClarkAshtonSmith. Along with Creator/RobertEHoward, they were the "big three" contributing authors to WeirdTales, the classic pulp magazine.
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[[folder: Live Action TV ]]
* ''Series/{{Farscape}}'' episode ''Taking the Stone'' takes place in the catacombs of a Royal Funeral Planet: though not inhabited by the undead, it ''has'' become home to a [[GangOfHats gang of]] [[TheHedonist thrillseeking]] [[TeenageWasteland teenagers]].
* Unsuprisingly, the ''Series/StargateSG1'' episode "The Tomb" mostly takes place in one.
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[[folder: Tabletop Games ]]
* The ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' TombOfHorrors setting, obviously.
** Many ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' campaigns or settings are going to feature at least a token AncientTomb or two and others will have far more than that. It's a staple of the game.
* In the GrimDark 41st Millennium of ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'', you get all kinds of tombs: Gothically ornate catacombs of Imperial saints and nobles, strangely beautiful but often booby trapped Eldar soul shrines, massive memorials to legendary generals... And then you get [[MindRape mind-breaking]] citadels and catacombs dedicated to the most foul [[TheCorruption Chaos-aligned]] EvilOverlord in the system, ''always'' dangerous to those who value their lives and sanity, always haunted by [[OurDemonsAreDifferent daemonic]] energies and other [[EldritchAbomination horrible things]].
** On the most extreme level of lethal tombs is a '''faction''' based around them, the [[RobotWar Necrons]], of whom if someone is [[SchmuckBait foolish enough]] to sniff around their [[EldritchLocation baleful obsidian resting places]], their awakening will spell [[DoomyDoomsOfDoom doom]] for every [[OmnicidalManiac living thing on the planet.]] And the worst thing? [[ParanoiaFuel These tombs are spread across the galaxy, just waiting to be awakened]]. ''And no one can be sure which planets have them and which don't.'' Oh, and these tombs are starting to be activated '''from offworld''', meaning that even a careful or entirely oblivious population who never went down that far might be [[DeathRay gaussed]] out of existence without knowing why.
* ''{{Exalted}}'' has a number of these, mainly First Age deathtraps built to house the bodies of Solars slain during the Usurpation. In-character, they were constructed and laden with the grave goods of the dead in the hopes of keeping the restless spirits of the "Anathema" sated. Out-of-character, it's mainly a reason for newly returned Solars to evade death traps and get all the cool stuff they collected in their last life.
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[[folder: Video Games ]]
* VideoGame/{{Diablo}}:
** The cathedral holds many free-standing stone coffins, many of which contain skeletons that will attack you.
** There is an entire level called The Tomb of King Leoric, which is not particularly ancient, but is still crawling with skeletons.
* In ''VideoGame/DiabloII'', Act II, the desert around Lut Gholein has the Stony Tomb and the Halls of the Dead. In the last section of the act, you reach the Valley of the Magi, which is lined with tombs.
* ''VideoGame/DiabloIII'' has you revisiting the old ruins of the Tristram Cathedral, which includes its share of tombs, including the Crypt of the Skeleton King where you throw down with the resurrected title monster who is barring the path to the Fallen Star that takes up the first part of the game proper.
* In ''VideoGame/DrakensangOnline'', the dungeon of Grimmagstone which is north of the starter town, fulfills this role. Complete with roaming [[DemBones undead]].
* The Catacombs in ''VideoGame/DarkSouls'', which is crawling with [[{{Necromancer}} necromancers]] and [[DemBones skeletons]]. It leads to the Tomb of Giants, which is home to Gravelord Nito, first of the dead.
* ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'' games have more ancient tombs per square mile than you can shake a magic katana at.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXI'' has King Ranperre's Tomb, as well as the Eldieme Necropolis, which is inhabited by undead even during the Crystal War of 20 years ago.
** The Sacrarium from ''[[NintendoHard Chains of Promathia]]'' expansion storyline will teach you that [[Franchise/FinalFantasy Square-Enix]] wants to see you ''dead''.
* ''PlanescapeTorment'' has the Whispering Stone catacombs under Sigil. Naturally, this being ''Torment'', the dead have formed a kind of [[TheNecrocracy necrocracy]] there.
* ''[[VideoGame/{{Rayman}} Rayman 2: The Great Escape]]'' has the Tomb of the Ancients.
* ''VideoGame/{{Thief}}: The Dark Project'' has:
** "Down in the Bonehoard". The entire mission is set in the Bonehoard, a gigantic underground tomb complex featuring lots of [[EverythingsDeaderWithZombies zombies]].
** "The Lost City" includes an AncientEgyptian-style tomb (not actually from that civilization, though).
* In the ''VideoGame/{{Thief}} II: The Metal Age'' mission "Eavesdropping", the seminary's catacombs contain some of the loot, and potentially a key that you will have to retrieve. Unfortunately, or not, they also contain Haunts.
* The ''VideoGame/{{Warcraft}}''games have the Tomb of Sargeras, where [[{{Satan}} Sargeras]]' remains were hidden. It used to be in the underwater ruins of a city, but it was raised from the depths and is now an archipelago infested with demons.
* ''VideoGame/LaMulana'' has the Mausoleum of the Giants and the Graveyard of the Giants.
* Both ''VideoGame/JediAcademy'' and ''VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic'' feature the Sith tombs on Korriban (see under Literature, above).
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXII'' has several seeing as a key component of the plot involves salvaging artifacts from a dead king. the first in the long line is The Tomb of Raithwall. The most memorable and disturbing however is the Necrohol of Nabudis, which is actually an entire city turned tomb due an incident involving the same artifacts you're looking for.
* ''VideoGame/HellgateLondon'' has the five-level-deep Necropolis. It may or may not contain dead people (the probability is high that there'll be some form of undead or spirit,) but the graves at least are guaranteed features.
* One of the exhibits in {{Shivers}} is dedicated to tombs and curses.
* ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedII'' has the Assassin Tombs (typically having larger structures like churches built around them) and the Auditore Family Crypt (which has no puzzles or guards but provides some interesting backstory). ''Brotherhood'' brings back the Crypt [[spoiler:during the opening segment, where Desmond and Lucy go through the catacombs beneath modern Monteriggioni, including parts of the crypt, to get into the inner sanctum beneath the Villa Auditore.]]
* All three ''VideoGame/DungeonSiege'' games and their expansions feature ancient crypts as areas that must be traversed during the course of the game, some having two or three in one scenario. ''Dungeon Siege III'', in particular, features [[spoiler: the Heroes' Tomb, in which all of the recruitable characters from the original game are buried.]]
* The final level of T'leth in ''VideoGame/{{X-COM}}: Terror From the Deep'' takes place in the crypt of the Great Dreamer.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Dominions}}'', some Magic Sites are Ancient Tombs. Also, one might be found in a random event, which can provide both gold and a magic item.
* Practically all of ''Riddle of the Sphinx'' is spent poking around in a series of AncientTomb-related Egyptian ritual chambers, and there are Mesoamerican and Celtic tombs in the sequel (''The Omega Stone'') as well.
* The second dungeon in ''VideoGame/TalesOfPhantasia'' is an elaborate tomb, which also [[SealedEvilInACan serves as a can]] for the BigBad.
* And let's just say that ''Franchise/TombRaider'' is a MeaningfulName.
* The 2012 update of ''VideoGame/DwarfFortress'' added elaborate burial tombs where sentient creatures born and died during world generation will be interred. It makes for excellent DungeonCrawling in Adventure Mode, and a source for necromancers to summon their armies from in Fortress Mode.
* In the city-building game ''{{Pharaoh}}'', you build one of them. And then another. And yet another. It's really the point of the game, because pyramids are essentially just overtly huge ancient tombs.
* ''[[VideoGame/NancyDrew Tomb of the Lost Queen]]'' is about Nancy and others investigating one.
* ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaOracleGames'' have the Ancient Tomb and the Explorer's Tomb
* ''VideoGame/TorchlightII'''s 1st Act the crumbling brown stone type, Act 2 has the elaborately decorated and trapped type, and Act 3 has the sunken crypt types. Act 2 takes a break from the SortingAlgorithmOfEvil to throw in the toughest BonusBoss of the game.
* ''VideoGame/CliveBarkersUndying'': Mausoleums, catacombs, crypts and the Tomb of the Undying King.
* ''[[VideoGame/{{Something}} Something Else]]'': Kabu Katakomb is an AutoScrollingLevel where Luigi has to dodge the Kabus and the bats. One section is underwater, which is difficult because Luigi is a slow swimmer and the scrolling speed is about the same is the scrolling speed of the land section.
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[[folder: Western Animation ]]
* Mumm-Ra in ''WesternAnimation/{{Thundercats}}'' had a pyramid with four obelisks that shot impressive force lightning into the sky whenever he got angry. It also had a large slimepit for scrying and a good deal of horror - flying mummy bandages that wrapped themselves around his enemies, for example.
* The Cave of Two Lovers in ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'' contains the vast tomb of StarCrossedLovers Oma and Shu, who are certainly ancient if their tale is accurate. Though several horror tropes are played with, the cave is ultimately not dangerous but romantic. If you don't mind the [[MixAndMatchCritters wolf-bats and badger-moles]].
* ''WesternAnimation/ReBoot'' had a game with this setting, part of a ShoutOut to ''Film/{{The Mummy|1999}}''.
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[[folder: Real Life ]]
* Aside from many obviously real burial tombs, Pharaohs would actually circulate legends about their tombs being cursed to prevent grave robbing. In the long run, this did not work.
** Indeed, most were raided by people who had been alive when the Pharaoh had died.
* The tomb of Qin Shi Huangdi is still mostly unexplored; the site is contaminated with mercury (and according to legend it includes a massive model of his empire with the waterways made of liquid mercury). The most famous excavated part is the Terracotta Army, which was protected by still-functioning traps. According to the stories it was built by 700,000 men, which would make the work camp the biggest city in the world at the time.

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