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The Black Pyramid in the Khemri Necropolis.

The Black Pyramid was the greatest legacy of the Great Necromancer.


To increase his power and maintain dominance over the land, Nagash ordered the building of a vast black pyramid. Whilst the populace of Khemri believed this to be just another burial tomb, it was in fact a structure that would channel and harness the Winds of Magic to Nagash's every whim.[2a]

The pyramid became Nagash's obsession, and its construction quickly drained Khemri's resources, forcing the necromancer to wage war to capture building material and replenish his workforce. Nagash demanded great quantities of gold and slaves from other cities to be sent to Khemri. That which was not freely given was taken by force, and several cities were brutally conquered by Nagash.[2a]

Marble the colour of midnight was brought from afar, and innumerable slaves toiled day and night for fifty years until the Black Pyramid of Nagash towered over all other monuments in the whole of Nehekhara. Such was Nagash's arrogance that he had built for himself a tomb that dwarfed even the Great Pyramid of Settra. The broken corpses of countless slaves were built into its foundations, and mystic sigils of power were woven into the Black Pyramid's walls.[2a]

After a titanic battle, Nagash's forces were defeated by the Army of the Seven Kings. Khemri was besieged, then sacked. Nagash's immortal lieutenants, who had taken refuge in the cursed Black Pyramid, were dragged out into the sunlight one by one and executed by the vengeful Priest Kings. However, Nagash managed to escape before the Priest Kings found his tomb thanks to the sacrifice of Arkhan, who stalled the attackers long enough for his master to flee. With a curse on his lips, Nagash vowed to turn the entire world into a kingdom of the dead, and travelled north to plot his revenge.[2a]

The Black Pyramid of Nagash,

Upon his return to Nehekhara, such was Nagash's bitterness, so great the potency of his thwarted ambition, that he chose to end all life in the land rather than see anyone else hold power over it. After defiling the water supplies, Nagash came to Khemri with his Skeleton Warriors, dragging away King Alcadizaar to rot in a dungeon cell whilst he himself, for the first time in centuries, sat upon the throne of Khemri.[2b]

However, Nagash did not linger in Khemri for long. Filled with insane visions of power, he returned to Nagashizzar and began to cast the greatest and most terrifying spell of necromancy ever conceived. He intended to enact the Great Ritual, a spell powerful enough to resurrect every corpse across the globe and bind them under his control. With them, Nagash would command an unstoppable army of the dead that he could use to conquer the entire world. To power his Great Ritual, he consumed vast quantities of warpstone provided by the Skaven in Cripple Peak and summoned all the energies stored within his cursed Black Pyramid. As Nagash chanted within his fortress, the sky began to darken for hundreds of miles and the ground shook. As his spell reached its crescendo, a great wave of power surged from the sorcerer's body, washing over the lands of Nehekhara and stealing the life from everything in its path. Crops shrivelled and animals perished within seconds. The last people of Nehekhara fell to the ground, their skin withering as if they had aged a century in the blink of an eye.[2b]

Within minutes, there was not a single living creature in the entirety of Nehekhara. Such was Nagash's execration of Alcadizaar, who had thwarted his plans for so long, that he spared the imprisoned king to witness the horrifying fate that had befallen his former kingdom.[2b]

However, before long, Nagash's scheme was thwarted once more. With the use of the Fellblade given by the Skaven, Alcadizaar killed him once again before departing in horror and shame, and so the Black Pyramid remained dormant for over a millennium.[2b]

1,111 years after his destruction, Nagash used the Black Pyramid as the location for his rebirth. He was unable to tap its power, as the Skaven had long since mined most of the warpstone in Cripple Peak, and Settra, unafraid, was able to bring together his Tomb Kings forces to force the Great Necromancer to retreat to Nagashizzar, leaving the Pyramid behind with its enormous stores of power.[2c]


  • 1: Warhammer Armies: Tomb Kings (6th Edition)
  • 2: Warhammer Armies: Tomb Kings (8th Edition)
    • 2a: pg. 13
    • 2b: pg. 15
    • 2c: pg. 21