"The word 'urbanomancer' combines Greek and Latin, which annoys grammarians and old-school occultists. Most urbanomancers couldn't care less, and think the correct term - 'Polisurgist' - sounds dumb."A standard naming convention for specialized magic- (or magic-equivalent-) users; they are referred to as somethingmancers, and their specialized form of magic is called somethingmancy. The something is usually the Greek word for the thing or some other acceptably important-sounding term for it. As an example, death mages are known throughout all of fiction as necromancers. This structure makes it quite easy to create names for branches of magic using just about anything you can think of. You use fire? You're a pyromancer. Water? Hydromancer. Ice and cold? Cryomancer. It's that simple. A very pervasive trope, and old enough that it's very prone to being played with. A notable variant is when people with Psychic Powers get classified by the suffixes "Kineticist" and "Kinesis". So a fiery psychic is a pyrokineticist/pyrokinetic, a water-controlling psychic is a hydrokinetic, a cold-manipulating psychic is a cryokinetic and so on with the endless possibilities of Greek and Pseudo Greek. Also if a work features a Fantastic Science, there's a good chance that it's going to have a similar naming scheme. Technically, the -mancy and -kinesis suffixes are both misnomers. "Mantia" stands for divination, making "Necromancy" the mystical practice of communicating with the dead but not necessarily bringing them Back from the Dead. "Kinesis" is "Movement", and thus might refer to being able to manipulate something but not will it into being. A more appropriate term would be "-urgy", meaning "work" or "shaping", but conjoining it with a term requires the first part to end with a consonant (as in, "Metallurgy"). See the analysis tab for further details. See Necromancy for a common specific subtrope.
— Unknown Armies, "Postmodern Magick"
Meet the -Mancies of true divination!
open/close all folders
A to D
- Aeromancy: Interpreting the shapes of clouds. There are signs in the air and sky much closer than the astrological zodiac. Next time you are on a flight get a window seat and look for messages as you fly above and through the clouds.
- Alectryomancy: A form of divination using the sounds of bird calls or the pecking of seeds in relation to touching or manipulating letters of the alphabet.
- Aleuromancy: Answers and messages baked in a dough then chosen at random with a question in mind. Fortune Cookies. Can also be the interpretation of shapes in flour spread or dropped on a tray or on the bakers floor. Another form similar to tea cup reading was from ‘reading’ the signs left in the mixing bowl. (Aleuron meaning Flour + Mancy meaning divination)
- Alomancy: Casting salt into the air and read the patterns as it falls to the floor. Can also be salt cast into a fire.
- Alphitomancy: A specially prepared loaf of Barley bread was given to a person suspected of a crime. The innocent would digest it easily the guilty would have indigestion.
- Anomalous Cognition: Term used by parapsychologists to reference awareness of information without having to specify or theorize a particular means by which that information was transferred.
- Apantomancy: Taking meaning from chance encounters with animals. Saying you will be lucky when a black cat crosses your path. Aztec mystics took the flight of an eagle carrying a snake to be a good omen and Mexico City was born.
- Arithmancy or Arithmomancy: are early forms of Numerology where predictions are made through numbers and the number value of letters. Arithmancy has found renewed popularity with its inclusion in the Harry Potter stories.
- Astraglomancy or Astragyromancy: (Similar to Cleromancy) Making of decisions based on the throwing of dice.
- Astrology: Using the positions of the planets in the signs of the zodiac at your time of birth to prophesize future events and character traits. An astrologer must have your exact date (including time) and location of birth or conception to be accurate. See Western Zodiac
- Augury: Ancient Roman prophecy from watching the movement of birds and other animals during thunder and lightning.
- Austromancy: Deriving meaning from watching the winds especially during thunder and lightning.. “The winds of change”.
- Automatic Writing: is sometimes done in a trance or psychic state but sometimes with the writer’s awareness but the message is not from the writer’s mind.
- Axiomancy: Throw an ax into a tree or post and observe where the hatchet points.
- Belomancy, also known as Bolomancy: is an ancient form of divination using arrows. For example, three arrows would be marked with the phrases, God orders it me, God forbids it me, and the third would be blank. Choosing an advantageous direction was gleaned by tossing an arrow into the air, and letting its angle show the way to proceed. In the Book of Ezekiel 21:21 "For the king of Babylon stands at the parting of the way, at the head of the two ways, to use divination; he shakes the arrows."
- Bibliomancy: means interpreting a passage chosen at random from a book and offering up a prophecy from so doing. Prophesies in this form were predominantly taken from the Bible in earlier times.
- Botanomancy: is divination from scattering of leaves and vegetation in a high wind to seek direction. Leaves and or carved branches were sometimes burned and the smoke used in a similar fashion.
- Brontoscopy: Forecasting based on listening to the sound of thunder.
- Bumpology: is a study of bumps on the head. Much the same as Phrenology.
- Candle Reading: see Ceromancy and Ceroscopy below.
- Capnomancy: Interpreting the flow and shapes in the smoke of a fire to from a prophecy.
- Card Reading: see Cartomancy and Tarot.
- Cartomancy: Cartomancy is using a deck of cards in divination - the Tarot is the most popular deck to use, developed from the card game of the same name sometime in the late 19th Century. Other specialized decks used for divination and inspiration are known as oracle cards - Dream Cards, Chakra Cards, Animal Cards, Astrology Cards, You name it, there is most likely a deck of oracle cards about it.
- Catoptromancy: Fortune telling with the aid of mirrors. A Captromancer’s mirror was know as a ‘Magic Glass’ Gazing into a mirror is similar to crystal gazing.
- Causimomancy: Making predictions based on observing how items burn (or don't burn) when placed in a fire.
- Cephalomancy: Head Divination. Ancients would burn the head of a donkey, goat or ass on burning coals and made predictions from so doing.
- Ceraunoscopy: Prophecy from the study of thunder and lightning. Similar to Augury the Ancient Roman prophecy from watching the movement of birds and other animals during thunder and lightning. And Brontoscopy is based on listening to the sound of thunder.
- Ceromancy: also known as ceroscopy or candle reading. Either melting wax dropped into water and the shapes of hardened then interpreted into prophecy. Or simply meditating and gazing at a burning candle flame. The shapes formed in wax from a candle’s run off can also be read for divinatory meaning.
- Chiromancy, Cheirology and Chirognomy are all terms for Palm Reading or Palmistry which is divination from the lines on people's hands. Chirognomy is more specifically a focus on the general hand formations being size, shape and appearance of the hand.
- Cleromancy: Ancients would cast stones, pebbles or bones for divinatory meanings. Later dice became more popular. Also see Astraglomancy and Astragyromancy for dice divination.
- Clidomancy or Cleidomancy is divination using a dangling key when the sun or moon is in Virgo and the key tied to a Bible. Also see Radiesthesia and Coscinomancy.
- Combat Sense is a martial art of sensing what a combatant’s next move will be.
- Coscinomancy: Using a hanging sieve or shears suspended from a thread, a list of names of suspects is read aloud. The person whose name is read when or if the sieve quivers or turns is the perpetrator. Also see Radiesthesia and Cleidomancy.
- Critomancy: Prophecy from is the study of barley cakes.
- Cromniomancy: Divination by interpreting the sprouting behavior of onions.
- Crystal Ball Gazing, or Crystallomancy is the art of seeing future visions from within a crystal ball, or a quartz crystal cluster or point. Now many will insist you need a quartz ball and not a glass sphere. But the power is not in the object of focus but in the psychic ability of the reader.
- Cyclomancy: Spinning a wheel, a top or a bottle. The prophetic answer lays in the direction the item points or spins towards.
- Dactylomancy: Divination with a pendulum using a ring as the bob on the end of chain or cord. Similar to Radiesthesia
- Daphnomancy: When burning laurel branches in a fire if the branches crackled loudly this was a good omen and if there was an absence of crackling the omen was bad.
- Demonomancy: The summoning of demons to answer questions.
- Dendromancy: Druid divination with branches of oak or mistletoe set on fire. The prediction then made from seeing the direction and shapes of the ensuing smoke.
- Divining Rods and Dowsing more recently known as Radiesthesia. Divination using a forked stick, rods and pendulums for the discovery of hidden water and other metals, minerals, objects or missing persons. (Buy Divining Rods / Dowsing Rods from Amazon)
E to H
- Empyromancy: Prophecy from viewing laurel leaves burning in a fire. Also Pyromancy.
- Extispicy: Divination by the study of entrails from a sacrificed animal.
- Gastromancy: The seer utters prophetic words in a lowed tone coming from deep breaths from the belly whilst in a trance state. Sometimes considered to be Ventriloquism. Gastromancy is often misquoted as a form of crystal gazing whereby glass goblets of clear water placed in front of lighted candles where gazed upon.
- Geloscopy: Prophecy from observations of a person by the way they laugh.
- Genethlialogy: Astrologically forecasting the destiny of a new born child.
- Geomancy 1: Determing the future from various forms created by tapping sand or dirt. Since the Middle Ages it is commonly done with paper and pen.
- Geomancy 2: Also Feng Shui. Geomancers will locate and shape spaces in harmony with both the physical and the spiritual environment using an awareness of the subtle earth energies or ley lines.
- Gyromancy: Divination performed by going around in a circle marked along its perimeter with letters of the alphabet. When the dizzy person stumbles onto the letters, words can then be interpreted as a message. Similar to the technique used in psychic circles and Ouija boards where the participants form a circle and place one finger on a glass surrounded by a circle of letters of the alphabet. The glass will touch letters in turn to indicate words and the words then form messages.
- Halolmancy: Casting salt into the air then reading the patterns as it falls to the floor. Can also be salt cast into a fire. Also known as Alomancy.
- Haruspication, Hieromancy and Hieroscopy: An ancient art of investigating the entrails of sacrificial animals in order to see what the future holds.
- Hepatomancy: The subdiscipline specifically involving divination by means of reading an animal's liver.
- Hippomancy: Divination by observing the appearance, neighing and foot stamping behaviour of horses.
- Horoscopy: Producing and interpreting Astrological Horoscopes.
- Hydromancy: Water Divination. Various forms of prophecy by observing water including the color, ebb and flow, or ripples produced by pebbles dropped in a pool.
I to O
- Ichthyomancy: Prophetic observation of head and entrails of fish.
- Iconomancy: The casting of spells through pictures or icons.
- Lampadomancy: Divination from observations of movement from the flame of a single oil lamp or torch.
- Lecanomancy: Divination where a stone is thrown into a basin of water. A reader will give prophesies from the sound the stone makes in the water and the images of the rippling water. Sometimes oil is used instead of a rock and the shapes of the oil floating on the water are focused on.
- Libanomancy: Reading the shapes formed in the rising smoke or the flares, pops and crackling sounds as incense burns upon coals.
- Lithomancy: Divination by interpreting the pattern of crystals, stones or stone talismans cast to the floor or upon a chart or map.
- Margaritomancy: Margarita is Latin for Pearl. Margaritomancy was actually Pearl divination. Pearls were either cast into a pot over a fire or pearls were prophetically observed in oyster shells.
- Meteoromancy: Although it is said to be a prophecy from the study of meteors, it was actually a Roman form of divination from thunder and lightning.
- Metoposcopy: Predicting personality, character, and destiny, by reading patterns and lines on a subject's forehead combined associations to astrology.
- Moleosophy: Divination from bodily marks such as moles, birthmarks and skin blemishes.
- Molybdomancy: Omens were sought by interpreting the noises and hisses of molten lead when dropped into a cauldron of water. Alternatively the shapes formed by the molten metal solidifying in the water were observed. Also the directions that spilled liquid metal would flow when poured onto a flat surface could be prophesized upon.
- Myomancy: Ancient form of divination by observing the behavior of rats and mice.
- Nigromancy: Actually a medieval misspelling of "Necromancy" from a confusion of necro- ("[the] dead", Greek) with nigro- ("black", Latin). Came to be interpreted as "Black Magic" in general.
- Oculomancy: Divination by scrying into a subject’s eye. May well be the origin of the saying "The eyes are the windows to the soul".
- Oinomancy, Oenomancy: Divination conducted by examining patterns in wine spilled on cloth or paper. The sediment in the bottom of a glass or bottle of wine was also observed for prophetic signs.
- Omphalomancy: A method of predicting how many children a mother may have during her lifetime, based on the number of knots in the umbilical cord and the shape of the newborn infant’s navel.
- Oneiromancy: A psychic form of dream interpretation that uses dreams to predict the future.
- Onomancy, Onomantics: Divination by the study of letter in a person’s name. Similarities with Numerology
- Onychomancy: Fingernail Fortune Telling by watching the reflection of sunlight on the oiled fingernails of a young boy, then interpreting the symbols that appear. The higher the symbol is situated on the nail, the nearer the events are in the future. Can be a part of Chiromancy / Palmistry.
- Oomancy, Ovomancy, Oomantia or Ooscopy: Divination by breaking an egg into a container of water, then interpreting the forms which the white of the egg assumes in the water. (Incidentally, the prefix oo- is pronounced "oh-o", not as in "boot".)
- Ophiomancy: Serpent Prophecy. Divination by observing the way a snake coils itself and its manner of eating.
- Ornithomancy or Orniscopy: (Often misspelled as Orinithomancy). Foretelling the future was carried out by observing the actions of birds. In particular birds' flights, songs and the patterns made by the aerial formations of flocks of birds.
P to R
- Palmistry, Palm Reading or Cheirology: Divination from the lines on and the structures of people's hands.
- Pegomancy: Divination in which one ‘gazed’ into the waters of a well, spring, fountain, small lake or calm river.
- Plastromancy: Divination from the undershell (plastron) of a turtle, inscribed and burned. Unique to the far east.
- Phyllorhodomancy: When clapping the palms with a rose leaf in hand a prophecy was made from the different type of sound produced by the clap.
- Pyromancy, Pyroscopy: Fire divination by observing the flickering shapes of flames in a fire or from a candle. Sometimes extended to divination by inspecting the patterns on certain objects after they have been through fire.
- Quartz Crystalmancy: The psychic art of seeing future visions from within a quartz crystal ball, or a quartz crystal cluster or quartz crystal point.
- Radiesthesia: Dowsing with rods or a pendulum. Radiesthesia is a word of Latin origin meaning sensitivity to radiation. The rod or pendulum can amplify a dowser’s sensitivity to electromagnetic fields. See Pendulum.
- Rhabdomancy: Dowsing for underground water or minerals with a rod or staff made of Hazel wood.
- Rhapsodomancy: Prophetic Rhapsody. Opening a book of poetry at random and finding intuitive guidance from within that particular poem.
S to U
- Scapulimancy: Divination from patterns on an animal's shoulder blade bones (scapulae). In certain contexts, this was also known as—no fooling—spatulamancy.
- Sciomancy, Sciamancy: Communicating with spirits in a séance or channeling session. But this is often misquoted as shadow divination.
- Scrying: Term for psychic gazing or seeing. As in gazing into a crystal ball or seeing through a reflective surface. Scrying is an inner vision while de-focusing on an outer object.
- Sand Scrying: With a fine sand spread in a tray the process is similar to automatic writing, in that you allow free flow while holding a pencil or stick lightly in the sand surface. Patterns in the sand can be letters or shapes that can be read intuitively.
- Sideromancy: Straw placed onto a burning hot surface was prophetically observed for the way the straw curled and burned.
- Sortilege: Medieval term for sorcery or one who divines. Sortilege has also has been associated casting bones or drawing lots for divination.
- Spodomancy: Divination by observing the ashes of a sacrificial fire.
- Star Sign: The position of the Sun in the Zodiac at the time of your birth. Also called Sun Sign. See Western Zodiac.
- Sternomancy: Divination from the shape of an animal's sternum (breastbone). The tradition of poultry "wishbones" descends from this.
- Stichomancy: Divination by reading a line or passage from a book chosen and opened at random. Similar to Bibliomancy.
- Stolisomancy: Deriving messages from the way people dress. In particular noticing out-of the-ordinary happenings when dressing; odd socks, missing buttons, inside out clothing or putting wrong shoe on foot and the like.
- Sun Sign: The position of the Sun in the Zodiac at the time of your birth. Also called Star Sign. See Western Zodiac
- Sycomancy: Written messages on fig tree leaves or sometimes paper are rolled up, soaked or burnt. Observation of reactions to burning or unfurling or dying signify certain omens.
- Tasseography, Tasseomancy: Means Cup Divination. Reading tea leaves or coffee grains that remain in a cup once the beverage has been consumed.
- Tephramancy: Ashes from a burned sacrificial victim examined for omens.
- Tiromancy, Tyromancy: During the cheese making process the curds were observed for omens.
V to Z
- Xylomancy, Zylomancy: Divination by interpreting the shape and position burned wood or of observing dry wood and dead trees found obstructing a path.
open/close all folders
Anime & Manga
- In Popotan Ai uses Anthomancy: She divines by flowers, specifically dandelions.
- Magic: The Gathering is full of mancers, and while they do have their share of future-seeing mancers, most mancers use the "control whatever it is" version 'cause it's more fun (some, like Retromancer or Anathemancer, are a little shaky on even what their prefix means). Matt Cavotta gives us the scoop on Magic's 'mancers here.
- Phil Foglio's Stanley and His Monster mini-series included a character who practiced "Jell-O-Mancy".
- Hellblazer does this a lot, usually with the title character.
- Kieron Gillen's Phonogram is centered around London's Brit Pop scenesters, who practice "phonomancy," or the application of music as magic.
- In the "My Little Mages" series of humanized fan-art for My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, among the classical mages, elementalists and enchantresses you can find Chrysalis the Necromancer, Princess Luna the Umbramancer, Sunset Shimmer the Pyromancer, Maud Pie the Geomancer and Derpy the... Muffinmancer.
- Elementals Of Harmony:
- Pumpkin Cake is an ontolomancer. By altering the moment of Ontological Inertia, she can make intangible concepts "real enough to sit on", render herself totally unnoticable, and undo spells by subjecting them to gradual existence failure.
- Laughter magic is also called thaliamancy, named after The Muse of comedy. It's explicitly described as not making sense.
- At high enough levels, honesty magic, or alethiomancy, is inherently incompatible with fiction, which is ultimately an elaborate form of lying. In one blog entry, FanOfMostEverything wonders if this is the reason behind the "Applejack is best background pony" meme.
- Harry Potter: The books have Arithmancy, a class Hermione (and only Hermione) takes. This one is an accurate use of the suffix, though, as arithmancy is divination by numbers.note Amusing when you consider that Hermione once stated that she considered divination to be very "woolly".
- Don Callandar's novels: Pyromancer, Aquamancer, Geomancer, and Aeromancer.
- William Gibson's iconic Cyber Punk novel Neuromancer. Actually a good use of the "mancer" suffix - a "Neuromancer" "divines information" with a "neural interface", albeit through the use of technology rather than magic. Also a pun, "New Romancer", connected to the New Romantic music genre of the '80s. Lampshaded by the titular AI in conversation with the protagonist.
- One of the Elric of Melnibone stories referred to Elric as a nigromancer, evidently meaning someone who uses black magic.
- The Mistborn trilogy features metal-fueled magic called allomancy, in which only four out of sixteen metals involves divination (the mythic atium that gives you a few seconds' sight into the future, its pair malatium that allows you to see glimpses of a person in their own past, gold which allows you to see a glimpse into your own past, and gold's alloy electrum which lets you see a few seconds into your own future and is largely useless except as a counter to atium). The similar magical system is called feruchemy, which is poorly named for the opposite reason — it is indeed a chemical magic, but only two of the sixteen metals contain iron. The blood-based magic, hemalurgy, is the only one with a truly appropriate name.
- The Dresden Files have a few; Pyromancy, Necromancy, Neuromancy, and the like. Joked about when Harry refers to wizard Peabody as a "Bureaucromancer." When he calls Mac "a master Beeromancer". He's not kidding, either. Queen Mab refers to mortal technology as "Ferromancy". Harry's medium friend Mortimer Lindquist is occasionally referred to as an "Ectomancer" (a somewhat fair use of the name).
- The DFRPG takes this one step further with the Focused Practitioner class, which is only called that because it sounds better than Prefixmancer. Meaning, any concept you can think of, someone somewhere is likely practicing it. If you wanted, you could create something as everyday as an Aquamancer or something as rare and esoteric as Epidermancy, a school of magic useful only useful for removing blemishes with magic. Apparently, a Caffeinomancer lives in Brooklyn.
- T.A. Pratt's Marla Mason series has all kinds of sorcerers with different (and often bizarre) specialties depending on what they draw power from: pyromancers, aquamancers, geomancers, pharmacomancers, necromancers, biomancers, technomancers, sex magicians (who are jokingly referred to in the books as pornomancers), aviomancers, vermomancers(who have power over vermin like rats and roaches) nihilomancers (who can drive their enemies to suicide), herbomancers, mycomancers (who derive power from mushrooms of all things), and nearly every other kind of -mancer one could possibly imagine. Marla herself, an Anti-Heroine/very Dark Action Girl, refers to herself half-seriously as a "brute-force-o-mancer."
- And Another Thing... introduces "Tyromancy", which uses cheese to predict the future.
- "Not Ours to See", one of David Langford's spoof stories about Dagon Smythe, Occult Detective, features a discussion of various methods of divination, each with a -mancy name. They get increasingly ridiculous, before ending with the art of predicting the future by doing absolutely nothing. Which is, of course, dormancy.
- Averted in the Nasuverse, where the general term for that thing magi do is "Thaumaturgy", or miracle working (derived from an eponymous Real Life term). As the name implies, the aim of Thaumaturgy is to replicate or reproduce "miracles" or "true magic".
- In The Magicians, when Quentin finds his Discipline is unclassifiable, he says of himself "I'm a nothingmancer. I'm a squatmancer."
- Terminal World by Alastair Reynolds has "Tectomancers", who have mental control over the borders between the different technology levels. This is presumably derived from tectonic plates. However, "tekton" is Greek for "builder" (tectonic plates are the plates from which the Earth is built), so Tectomancy may mean ... something different from what the author intended.
- And now we have the book Geekomancy by Michael R. Underwood.
- In "Vincalis the Agitator" we briefly get a mention of mnemonimancy, memory-magic, which apparently involves summoning a mnemon that will kill you if you give an inaccurate recounting of your memories.
- The Dreamblood Duology has narcomancy (no, not necromancy, narcomancy), a magic of sleep and dreams. Various sorts of dreams are harvested and turned into different kinds of mystical fluid, for example wet dreams becoming dreamseed or nightmares becoming dreambile.
- In the Mediochre Q Seth Series, 'mancy' is the official term for magic. So far mentioned are necromancy (death), pyromancy (fire), hydromancy (water), technomancy (technology and enchantment), medimancy (healing), tempomancy (time), iconomancy (images), thermomancy (heat), phobiamancy (fear), philiamancy (love), and psychomancy (minds).
- Doctrine of Labyrinths includes mention of necromancy, hydromancy, oneiromancy (dream magic), and geomancy (earth magic).
- Bibliomancy, or tal, is used in Michael Strogoff as a means to decide of the punishment of the titular character for spying for Imperial Russia.
- In The Beyonders: Chasing the Prophecy the prophecy in question was made by Darian the Pyromancer, which is one of the actual legitimate uses of -mancer as he was a seer who saw the future by gazing into flames.
- It's not used for prophecy, but in Vernor Vinge's A Deepness in the Sky, the early attempts of the aliens called Spiders at electronics displays can only produce a limited range of colors. Many Spiders assume that a display capable of reproducing their entire visible spectrum would be impossible to construct, and derisively call the idea "videomancy". Of course, they later develop displays capable of producing their entire visible spectrum, including infrared and ultraviolet "colors".
- Ghost Stories has Ambulomancers, people attuned to walking the open road and able to read the future through its curves. Similar groups of people include the Routewitches and the Trainspotters.
- In the Dreamblood Duology, Narcomancy, a magic of sleep and dreams. The dreams of Hanaja's faithful can be harvested by her priests and in turn used to do all sorts of things like healing. Gatherers can use it to send people on their last journey to Ina-Karekh and to harvest dreamblood from their final dreams.
- Magic Ex Libris gives us libriomancy, the magic of pulling fictional items from books.
- In the "Divination" episode of QI, the four contestants were invited to predict their scores by various methods of divination. Alan Davies was invited to use Pygomancy. Alan got the last laugh, however, by "vanishing" from the set (he wanted to watch his football team, Arsenal, play in the finals). It was the only episode of Q.I. in which he was not a panelist.
Alan: Well, you did say, "Divination, by arse," 'n all.
- From the same Divination episode, after all the panelist had their particular method of divination named and explained, one panelist snarked that they could be considered Stephen's "'mancy boys".
- In The Savage Eye, Mick 'The Bull' Daly's mother used to read people's shite (faeces) in a cup to tell their future.
- Exalted has Necromancy (the dark magic of the Underworld, power of and over the dead), and Oneiromancy (power of dreams and over Wyld), although the latter is almost exclusively practiced by the Fair Folk.
- Dungeons & Dragons only uses the -mancer suffix for Necromancers, using more unique names for the other schools of magic.
- One exception is the NPC class Oracle, introduced in one issue of Dragon magazine. The class is a diviner with 26 different divining abilities, all pertaining to a different thing, and each ending with -mancy. However, this one is actually an appropriate use of the term -mancy, as the Oracle is a diviner.
- Some of the subclasses (Kits in 2nd edition, Prestige Classes in 3rd) uses class names ending in -mancer.
- Also, the Diplomancer, the slang term for a build with such high Diplomacy skill that a roll of the dice would turn enemies into fanatical servants.
- The Chronomancer in 2E was a casting class (based on the wizard, but with its own kits and subclasses) introduced in the Chronomancer supplement for 2E, and specializing in chronomancy (that is, the manipulation of time in various forms).
- Unknown Armies uses this heavily. Every magic school is some kind of "-mancy." Examples include the entropomancer (who powers up through risking her own life), dipsomancer (power from alcohol), bibliomancer (power from acquiring rare books), and many others.
- However, calling everything _____mancy is mentioned as a modern fashion. The name "Urbanmancy" is an example of this, with the book stating that if mages cared about language it would be called "Polisurgy". Earlier schools of magic were generally named things like The Way Of The Cogs, or The Way Of All Freedom.
- One notable fan-made school of magick from the website is "Tropamancy". Yup. Inspired by this very wiki.
- Rifts has nicknames for various specialist psionicist classes with "fun" alternates. Pyrokinetic=Burster, Brontokinetic/electrokinetic=Zapper. Not one but TWO Necromancer classes. One from Africa, and a Russian alternate known as a Bone Wizard. Necromancers can learn bone magic spells and vice-versa though. There is also the Techno-Wizard, the Fire Sorcerer, the stone magic-using Stone Master, and the Nega-Psychic, who nullifies or negates magical effects and psychic abilities.
- FATAL has a total of 30 whatevermancy skills, ranging from gleaning information off of staring at the clouds to telling the future from someone's droppings (of course).
- In the New World of Darkness, changelings have oneiromancy as the art of entering and manipulating dreams (as opposed to interpreting them to tell the future) and mages have geomancy as the art of manipulating the local landscape to redirect ley lines to alter local auras (as opposed to divining using the landscape).
- Old World of Darkness:
- In Vampire: The Masquerade, some vampire clans can learn Necromancy, which combines the historical divination aspect with the more modern pop culture raising zombies aspect. Also, Clan Tremere could learn the Path of Technomancy.
- The clanbook for the Mekhet in Vampire: The Requiem uses it correctly, however, outlining various methods of divination with "-mancy" as a suffix. This makes sense, as the Mekhet are the clan with the Discipline of Auspex and heavy occult trappings.
- The Ogre Kingdoms of Warhammer have Gut Magic, a.k.a. "Gastromancy".
- Mage Knight miniatures had Technomancers, wizards who made mechanical golems and such, powered by a special mineral called Magestone. Death mages were also called Necromancers, and the 'Necromancy' ability specifically referred to returning a dead creature to play (especially a Zombie or Skeleton creature). Averted with their opposites, the Elementalists (who used the 'elements of nature' rather than the four classical elements). Oddly, the only actual Oracles in the game didn't have a specific -mancy.
- Shadowrun does this a lot, with technomancy (the magical manipulation of the Internet) and cybermancy (the practice of keeping someone alive with magic long after the cyberware has had its fill) to name a few.
- Talislanta uses this trope with Cartomancy, Cryptomancy, Crystalomancy and Necromancy, although all of these do include some divinatory effects. It averts it with its other Orders of magic, such as Mysticism or Invocation.
- In Everquest wizards get 3 Alternate advancement abilities called Pyromancy, Cyromancy, and Acromancy that cause additional damage and resist debuff to Fire, Cold, and Magic respectively.
- In The Dresden Files RPG, one of the available templates for your character is a "Focused Practicioner" — apparently they were called that instead of Prefixmancers because it's easier to pronounce. Harry in the sidenotes jokes about Geekomancy. Examples have Chronomancers and such... and in the sample setting we got a honest-to-goodness Caffeinomancer (coffee-themed potion specialist)!
- Legend of the Five Rings doesn't specifically use the -mancy/-mancer suffixes for its magic-users, but could justifiably do so: rather than directly creating the effects, the Shugenja talks to the relevant spirits (fire/water/earth/whatever) and asks them to (cause a fireball/heal someone/strengthen a weapon/summon Captain Planet).
- The Technology Guide for Pathfinder includes the Technomancer as a prestige class, which grants certain powers over high-tech items by combining expertise in magic and engineering. It also includes the Technomancy spell, which is closer to divination (it helps locate and identify technological items).
- In Everyone Wants to Live, a play by Israeli playwright Khanokh Levin, Pozna, the protagonist, who has been informed by the a sub-reaper for the Grim Reaper and later by the Reaper himself that he is to die in three days lest he find a replacement, hosts a party after a few failed attempts to find one, and asks divinators to tell him he will live longer. First he asks an expert of palmistry to give his opinion, but he says the ‘life line’ ends abruptly, but it’s possible his hand has just not enough for it; Pozna reacts by chasing him off—‘you’re gonna see if the hand’s enough or not!’ He looks for another divinator, saying he doesn’t care what he reads—hands, eyes, anuses—as long as he’s willing to tell him he’ll live longer. The divinator tells him to smile, because he reads teeth, and tells him what he wants to hear, but then the sub-reaper appears and asks the divinator to read his own teeth; when the divinator says he’ll live longer, the sub-reaper strangles him to death and reminds Pozna that his fate is sealed.
- E.Y.E.: Divine Cybermancy has "Cybermancy" (Hackers with psi abilities) and "Necrocybermancy", which the process for installing extreme cybernetic implants, similar to fantasy necromancy; The patient dies, is cybernetically modified, and gets his spirit called back into the body.
- Some Final Fantasy games have character classes that use this. Most spellcasters are referred to as Mages (White, Black, or otherwise,) but the Geomancer is a recurring character class whose powers are drawn from the terrain type the party is fighting on. (likely a direct result of Feng Shui User just not sounding cool in English)
- The Necromancer class was added to the Game Boy Advance remake of Final Fantasy V.
- The Game Boy Advance remake of Final Fantasy VI names Relm's class as "Pictomancer", because her magic comes from painting pictures.
- Averted in Final Fantasy XIV, where one of the two mage classes is called "Thaumaturge". On the other hand, the Arcanist class is explicitly stated to be using a form of geomancy, albiet one that uses shapes rather than the earth; geometry rather than geography.
- One of the new jobs in Bravely Second is Catmancer (Nekomancer in Japanese). They have the power to use enemy skills. By eating cat food.
- Runescape has the Culinaromancer, an Evil Chef mage, And Oneiromancy which is "dream magic". As it is a fantasy MMORPG, necromancy is naturally present as well. There is also a Dishing Out Dirt hobgoblin geomancer, and a literal Badass Bookworm "Liberomancer", Lexicus Runewright. At one point, a wizard known to possess magical beads even reveals that he is working on developing a type of magic called beadromancy.
- Early on, Necromancer was a starting class with high Magic, though this was later abolished as well as the class system. A Retcon established that the prayers used by all players is a form of necromancy, which involves communing with the afterlife to seek the assistance of its residents.
- Played with by - what else? - Kingdom of Loathing, with the Pastamancer, who controls noodles, and can also summon the undead... through summoning noodly bodies.
- In King's Quest V: Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder!, Iconomancy is the casting of spells through pictures or icons.
- Actually used properly in Silent Hill when Dahlia mentions an event being "foretold by gyromancy". However, it leads to some heavy Narm when you learn what gyromancy is... According to The Other Wiki, gyromancy entails either spinning inside, or walking the circumference of, a circle drawn on the ground, with letters marking the rim, and the divination comes from when the spinner/walker stumbles over a letter. Repeat ad nauseum until a coherent sentence is formed.
- The Necromancer, Serpent Clan's most powerful unit, from Battle Realms.
- Combined with Fire/Ice/Lightning in Devil May Cry 2, resulting in Pyromancers, Auromancers, and Brontomancers.
- AdventureQuest and it's spinoffs DragonFable and AdventureQuest Worlds love this trope. Necromancers, pyromancers, technomancers, dracomancers, etc. It's probably only a matter of time before baconmancers start showing up in DragonFable.
- The Flash RPG MARDEK has necromancy, pyromancy, aeromancy, elemancy (which uses all four natural elements), and one character even claims to be an equillibriumancer.
- In said game's universe (a rather extensive one, with multiple inhabited planets of various levels of technological development), an equilibriumancer is one who uses the two moral elements, or Light and Dark. Sounds fitting with the balance, doesn't it?
- Mages in Lusternia subscribe to this naming philosophy: there are Pyromancers, Aquamancers, Aeromancers and Geomancers. (Interestingly, the conflict setup is Pyromancy V Aeromancy / Aquamancy V Geomancy, and is based on philosophy rather than Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors.)
- Warcraft III throws out centaur pyromancers, geomancers, and more.
- World of Warcraft takes this to new levels with Dinomancers. Yep, they are trolls who can control and transform into dinosaurs.
- The Mortal Kombat series has a resident necromancer and cryomancer in the form of the evil sorcerer Quan Chi and Lin Kuei assassin Sub-Zero respectively.
- The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings has Phillipa Eilhart perform what one NPC fairly accurately describes as "Lesbomancy" to heal a poisoned Saskia Or, rather, place her under a mind-control spell.
- Gyromancer's title uses this. The "gyro" presumably refers to the twisting mechanic of the game's puzzle component, although whether and how gyromancy works in-universe isn't specified. It's unrelated to the same-named method of divination mentioned up top.
- Coin Crypt has 'lootmancers'.
- Guild Wars and Guild Wars 2 call an Elementalist, who specializes in one specific Element a Pyromancer, Aeromancer, Geomancer or Aquamancer. Furthermore the players call an Elementalist, who specializes in casting lots of auras (lots of positive effects at once) an auramancer.
- Dark Souls: Spells that manipulate and create fire are all termed "pyromancy", though we never see a flame spell that actually has anything to do with divination. Strangely enough, the games' lore distinguishes between pyromancy and "flame sorcery", the latter of which was an art that died out with the Chaos Witches. How exactly flame sorcery was any different from pyromancy is unclear, except that it apparently used a staff as a catalyst (like regular sorcery) instead of a pyromancy flame.
- Applied liberally to Erfworld, with the usual half-cutesy twists added. Here, the "death" mages are called Croakamancers, the illusion-casters are called Foolamancers, and the earth-specialist is a Dirtamancer. Every school of magic (except for a few, like Hat Magic) bears the Mancy suffix, and we get stuff like Hippymancy, Lookamancy, Luckamancy, etc. Dirtamancers do move earth, but they can also use... night soil.
- Dominic Deegan gives us Infernomancers (guys who got their powers from the demons of Hell), in addition to Necromancers. Interestingly, we get a quick peek at the first necromancer (Rilian), while he's trying to come up with a name for it. Other names in the running were "Necromagica," "Ghost in the Spell", "Rilianmancy" and "Kill-You-Dead".
- Technomancy in Harkovast.
- Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal shows us that it at least knows something about this trope.
- Aubrey, in the January 9, 2002 strip of Something*Positive, refers to using sex appeal to get into a club without paying a cover charge as "Vaginamancy".
- Rubbermancy in the S&M themed Collar 6
- Oglaf has appellomancy, the ability to give people meaningful names.
- Autumn Bay has Eileen Winston, a powerful bibliomancer.''
- Whateley Universe:
- Geomancer, whose power is an ability to manipulate ley lines. Mainly she uses it to do things like keep her dorm room from smelling moldy, or make her mom's plants grow better.
- Conversely, the Necromancer is more of an aversion in that he's mainly a generic — if unquestionably dangerous — "evil" wizardly supervillain who isn't actually seen to particularly specialize in necromancy. (The one time he does actually muster some zombies they end up staying conveniently hidden in the sewers and don't really prove effective against the protagonists when encountered or indeed do much of anything else.)
- The character Sir Perfluous (Perf for short) uses a spell called "conjure milk" in a failed attack against an unfriendly orc. He is later mockingly referred to as "the lactomancer".
- Later on, he's also referred to as a "retromancer", due to his unique ability to retrocast any spell in the world (retrocasting means casting a spell and getting the exact opposite effect as intended). This is, however, only because he's dyslexic, and always get the spells wrong.
- TV Tropes: Trope names that use this form:
- One episode of The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy had the trio face off against a nasal-mancer, or nose wizard, who was using an enchanted scent to lure all the noses of the city, Billy's included, to the shopping mall where he resided so he could replace his lost nose. Grim claims "It's not a very popular school of wizardry."
- An early episode of Adventure Time has Finn and Jake learning "dustomancy," the ability to communicate with dust particles.
open/close all folders
- Justice League had at least one instance of "ferro-kenesis." This is the stated powerset of Iron Butterfly of Shadow Cabinet.
- Superboy has "tactile telekinesis" which therefore really isn't telekinesis at all. Justified in that it's only early on that it's purely touch-based. He simply left Cadmus before they could teach him how to use his powers, and so it took a lot longer to gain any kind of ranged ability. It never manages to extend far outside his body, though.
Films — Live-Action
- Subverted in Hellboy. Liz notes that her powers could be described as "pyrokinesis", but she doesn't like the term.
- In Misfits, one guy dubs his ability to manipulate dairy products "lactokinesis". It's surprisingly handy — think hydrokinesis with a shelf-life.
- Æon does this pretty heavily with psionic powers. In particular with the aptitudes Biokinesis, Electrokinesis, Quantakinesis and Vitakinesis, along with sub-categories such as Cryokinesis, Photokinesis, Pyrokinesis and Technokinesis.
- Dungeons & Dragons psionics seem to avoid the trope altogether, except for the fire-wielding Pyrokineticist prestige class, which suggests variants for the various energy types, like a Cryokineticist that wields cold (who actually shows up in the Frostburn book).
- In the Global Guardians PBEM Universe, Madras, who could telekinetically control fabric, called his power "Fasmokinesis", bastardizing "yfasma", the Greek word for "cloth". Also, there was hydrokinesis, pyrokinesis, and many others.
- This is one of the standard ways of classifying a cape's power in the web-serial Worm, with terms such as silicakinetic (the manipulation of glass and sand, from silicon) and osteokinetic (growth, manipulation and telekinetic control of bones) running the gambit alongside the more common psychokinetic and telekinetic powers.
- As mentioned above, both terms come from Real Life usage, and the various forms of -kinesis are still used widely today.
- Cytokinesis is what happens when cell divide during mitosis, but is a process from mitosis.
open/close all folders
Anime & Manga
- Toshiko Tatsuno of Soredemo Machi wa Mawatteiru practices meidojutsu, described as the art of "luring men with the illusion of gentleness, and taking their money".
- Naruto has three main schools of ninja techniques. Ninjutsu (which is basically magic that has some form of substance, like spitting fireballs or manipulating water), Genjutsu (Illusion-casting) and Taijutsu (Martial arts). Many individual ninja moves carry the name [X] no Jutsu, which roughly translates into "Art of the [X]" or "[X] Technique".
- Ninjas in Empowered's world can learn all kinds of cool magic, like kyonyujutsu (fake boobery magic), sosuijutsu (fast/quick/early to be drunk magic), sekushi nyanko "Monroe walk" jutsu (sexy cat "Monroe walk" magic), and more.
- If Hawk trains as a Ninja in Seiken Densetsu 3, he learns 4 Jutsu attacks corresponding to the elements: Water Jutsu, Earth Jutsu, Thunder Jutsu, and Fire Jutsu.
- Codex Alera has "crafting"; furycrafting as the catch-all term (since it involves manipulation of spirits called furies) and subdivisions for firecrafting, watercrafting, earthcrafting, windcrafting, woodcrafting, and metalcrafting.
- Journey to Chaos: Tariatla has "Taverncraft", which is an offshoot of "magecraft" otherwise known as "practical magic" (as opposed to "manaology" which is the academic study of mana). It is magic used by people who work in taverns to mix drinks (alcoholic and otherwise). They have magic spells and everything.
- The Witchlands calls all its varieties of magic users Somethingwitches (Plantwitches, Airwitches, Silkwitches etc.), and all the varieties of magic Somethingwitchery, with witch and witchery being the catch-all terms.
- Void Domain: Necromancy is the controlling of the dead and undead. Pyrokinesis is the controlling of fire. Aerotheurgy is the controlling of air. Clairvoyance, Clairsentience, Clairaudience, Clairalience, and Clairgustance are all mentioned as well.
- The Avatar: The Last Airbender franchise calls its manipulation of the elements "bending". It starts with the four standard elements — airbending, waterbending, earthbending, and firebending. As various applications of those four abilities are examined, many get their own "-bending" moniker: Firebenders can create lightning bolts as lightningbending, waterbenders can control fluids in plants (plantbending) or other people (bloodbending), and earthbenders' abilities can extend to sandbending, metalbending, or lavabending. There's also energybending, the manipulation of life energy that all the others developed from.