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Benevolent Mage Ruler
aka: Sorceror King
When a sorcerer gains enough knowledge of magic, Alchemy, Elemental Powers, or the innermost workings of magic, he may use his powers to Take Over the World. This is not that trope.

The Benevolent Mage Ruler (referred to for the rest of the article as a Sorcerer King) is the ruler of a good Kingdom.

The Sorcerer King will usually rule over Fantasy settings. Often in charge of one of two warring factions; his kingdom and an evil empire.

Note that female examples also exist, they are the Sorceress Queens.

This sometimes overlaps with Emperor Scientist, especially where Clarke's Third Law, Alchemy Is Magic, and/or Magitek is in this setting. But this trope is different as while the Emperor Scientist focuses on the sciences (and is usually evil or Mad). This character type is more in tune with the art of magic (and is usually good). This also overlaps with The Good King, The High Queen, The Woman Wearing the Queenly Mask, Princesses Rule and She Is the King.

Compare Emperor Scientist and Magocracy, the sci-fi and Vast Bureaucracy counterparts, and Authority Equals Asskicking or Asskicking Equals Authority depending on how he became King or Queen in the first place. Contrast Sorcerous Overlord.


Examples

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    Anime And Manga 

    Comic Books 

    Film 
  • Glinda in Oz: The Great and Powerful after Oscar wins her kingdom back. Her father was also a powerful wizard. Oscar is not, but he uses his technical knowledge and stage magic to create this impression.
  • Elsa in Frozen (eventually) ends up as this due to her ice powers.

    Literature 
  • Paul Atreides and his son Leto II in Dune. Though how "good" they are is debatable, considering how many billions died during the jihads of Paul's Fremen and how Leto played tyrant in order to get people to leave the stagnant core worlds and scatter throughout the universe. They have the ability of prescience and conscious control over their bodies to an improbable level. And of course Leto II merged with a sandworm and became the Trope Namer for God Emperor.
  • Jonathan IV of Conte becomes king of Tortall in the fourth book of Song of the Lioness, Lioness Rampant. Jon was born with magic and uses it throughout the series, most notable when Duke Roger threatens the kingdom, Jonathan uses the Dominion Jewel, brought to him by Alanna, to counteract Roger's spells.
  • In the Star Wars Expanded Universe, several Supreme Chancellors of the Galactic Republic were also Jedi Knights. In fact, there was a 400 year period when the Republic was ruled by only Jedi chancellors. All of them were this trope, and the Republic lived another thousand years because of their leadership.
  • Princess Ozma is a good and magical ruler of a fairyland.
  • The Dragon Knight is a baron who's also a magician (albeit a low-level one, since being a feudal lord means he can't dedicate his life to magecraft).
  • The Farseer dynasty in Robin Hobb's Realm of the Elderlings saga are psychically gifted with a variety of powers. Whether they fall here or under Sorcerous Overlord depends on the monarch: Kings Shrewd and Verity are definite examples of The Good King, while Regal is a prejudiced asshole and part of the first trilogy's Big Bad Ensemble.
  • The backstory of the Heralds of Valdemar books features the conflict between reluctant leader Urtho, the Mage of Silence, and would-be world conqueror Ma'ar... along with it's world-shattering aftermath.
  • Belgarion of Riva is Rivan King, Overlord of the West, and a powerful sorcerer. And a good guy.
  • Subverted with King Kethel and Queen Tathilya in The Quest of the Unaligned. They're the rightful rulers of the realm of Caederan, the most powerful mages in the Realm, and benevolent enough to make fine rulers. The problem is that they are too "airheaded" to realize that by favoring wind over the other three elements, they've thrown the whole kingdom out of whack.
    • Played completely straight with their son and daughter-in-law, Crown Prince Alaric and Princess Laeshana.
  • In the Web Serial Flight of the Godkin Griffin Shraeven, a newly conquered province of the Godkindred Kingdom that still considers itself a country, has nobility who are chosen by the gods instead of by bloodline, indicated by markings on their body and wielding of Elemental Magic as gods are the sole source of magic in this setting. Angharad, the new governor of Shraeven looks like she is being set up to make Shraeven independent and be their new queen as god after god marks her. But after destroying the physical form of the Godkindred's God Emperor she gives rulership of Shraeven to her "native guide" (and lover) Ragna, and becomes Priest-Sorcerer-Queen of the Godkindred instead.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Warhammer 40,000: The God Emperor of Mankind, among other things, was considered the greatest psyker (the franchise's term for psychics and sorcerers) of all time, capable of bending the fabric of reality and destroying much. His power was considered godlike, despite his insistence otherwise. As usual we have to note here that in any other setting he'd be a Sorcerous Overlord, as billions lie dead from his direct actions, never mind those of his followers. Did we mention that 40k is GRIMDARK yet?
  • Warhammer has several examples among its more magical races, though they are almost unheard of in the human realms. The High Elves are ruled by a Phoenix King, elected from the male nobility of Ulthuan, and an Everqueen - who is always the eldest daughter of the previous Everqueen, conceived after a year-long ritual marriage to the Phoenix King. All Everqueens are powerful sorceresses by birthright, and some of the Phoenix Kings have also been powerful wizards (Bel-Korhadris the Scholar-King and Bel-Hathor the Sage most prominently). Likewise the Wood Elves of the Loren Forest have Queen Ariel, who is a great wizard. The Slann Mage-Priests, rulers of the Lizardmen, might also count, although their morality is starkly alien and so it is a matter of uncertainty as to whether they're Benevolent Mage Rulers or Evil Sorcerous Overlords. Both at the same time probably.
    • Kislev is ruled by a Tzar who are ice mage/rulers who can bring forth a blizzard on their enemies, this is very handy when their northern neighbors are Chaos worshiping vikings who Rape, Pillage, and Burn for a living.
  • Forgotten Realms:
    • King Gareth Dragonsbane of Damara is an epic-level paladin and cleric of Ilmater. His magics are divinely given and tied to him remaining Lawful Good, and in the course of gaining the throne he helped drive out an occupying army from neighboring Vaasa's Sorcerous Overlord.
    • Also, three of the Seven Sisters, all of whom are Chosen of Mystra and powerful sorceresses, ruled realms as these. Alustriel Silverhand (Chaotic Good) spent 134 years as the High Lady of Silverymoon before stepping down, then was chosen as ruler of the Confederation of the Silver Marches two years later, and in both cases her rule proved a boon to the whole region. Meanwhile her sister Alassra is Chaotic Neutral but ruled as the Witch-Queen of Aglarond for decades, fighting hard to keep the country from being conquered by neighboring Thay. Meanwhile Laeral Silverhand is the wife of Khelben "Blackstaff" Arunsun of Waterdeep and though she doesn't actually rule the town (it has a council of lords rather than a single ruler), she is heavily involved in its running.

    Video Games 
  • Lord British in the Ultima series is an extremely powerful (if aging) magician and a benevolent ruler of the land named after him, Britannia.
  • Apostle Sanaki, Empress of Begnion, in Fire Emblem Tellius. Not seen in Path of Radiance but in Radiant Dawn she is a mage type class capable of using all classes of magic. Micaiah also once she becomes queen of Deain. She's also Sanaki's elder sister and the true heir of the Begnion, but decides against taking it.
  • Jieun of Dandelion grows into this in the Happily Ever After "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue. In the game proper, he's merely a Sorcerer Wise Prince.
  • WarCraft:
    • The High Elves of Quel'Thalas were ruled by the Sunstrider dynasty, all powerful mages, until Kael'Thas went off the deep end.
    • Jaina Proudmoore while she was the ruler of Theramore.
  • With the minor exception of his title (he used Grand Vizier instead. He was still openly and legally the one in charge, note), Gavin Magnus of Bracada of Might and Magic and Heroes of Might and Magic was this trope (understandable, as the ruler of the Wizards' nation of Bracada). Then the world blew up, and he went off the deep end.
  • Alexander of King's Quest is a reasonably competent magic user by the time he returns to Daventry and becomes a prince. When he goes to the Land of the Green Isles to skke Princess Cassima, he ends up being crowned king. Granted, his spell casting tends to be limited to Utility Magic, but that doesn't mean he can't be deadly with it.
  • Half the characters in Age of Wonders are this. The other half are the other trope. Which one you are depends on your choices.

    Webcomics 
  • Our Little Adventure has two mentioned so far. The first one is Queen Trilanna, the ruler of Everwood. The second is King Tegretol, ruler of Silverfronds. They both rule their lands justly and fairly (though a little chaotically) and they're working together to prevent the Souballo Empire from taking over Silverfronds.

    Western Animation 


Benevolent BossAuthority TropesBig Bad
The ArchmageWizards and WitchesBlack and White Magic
Barbarian HeroHeroesThe Big Guy

alternative title(s): Sorcerer Queen; Sorceress King; Sorceress Queen; Sorcerer King; Sorceror King
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