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NeutralThe Primus
Image of The Primus
Statue of the Primus
Gender Male
Race Eternal One
Affiliation(s) Necrolord Covenant
Occupation Leader of the Necrolords
Location Unknown
Status Unknown
Student(s) Bonesmith Heirmir

The Primus is the missing founder and ruler of Maldraxxus and the five houses of the Necrolord Covenant. The most tactical and long-thinking of the Eternal Ones,[1] he was a master strategist who was nearly unbeatable on the field of battle[2] and was notorious for always thinking far ahead of everyone else.[3] The Primus embodied the five traits of the ideal Maldraxxi soldier, traits he also instilled into the five houses: ambition, might, insight, guile, and the relentless pursuit of victory.[4][5] In addition to his military might, he was also known as a legendary weaponsmith.[6] All Necrolords receive a portion of the Primus' power in order to carry out their duty of defending the Shadowlands from external forces.[7]

At some point, the Primus vanished from his sanctum. In his absence, the leaders of the three remaining houses now ruthlessly fight one another to claim the Seat of the Primus and the position of commanding the armies of Maldraxxus. Before he disappeared, the Primus left behind cryptic messages and prophecies concerning the coming of one who would embody the might of Maldraxxus and save the realm from itself.[2][8]


The Primus' sanctum, the Seat of the Primus.
Receiving the power of the Primus.

In order to have Maldraxxus produce the strongest possible fighting force to defend the Shadowlands from external threats, the Primus devised a system of great houses, barons, and eternal war games[9] (such as the Contest of Conquest)[10] to weed out weakness and allow the army of the Necrolords to continually improve. The Primus himself used his time to hone his tactical and strategic skills beyond mortal constraints. It is said that he once sought out an unknown ally who could show him the infinite timeways and allow him to observe the same battle over and over again to see how slight differences in strategy and troop deployment could change the outcome of a conflict. After eons of such study, the Primus could instantly assess any situation and devise the likeliest path to victory.[9]

The Primus was the victor of countless hard-won battles. In one battle in the Iron Trench, he destroyed a group of ambitious Necrolords who thought to usurp him.[11] In another battle, he destroyed a group of invaders so utterly that it left fires that still burn to this day in the Burning Thicket.[12] The Primus had several apprentices, but the only one now remaining is Bonesmith Heirmir.[13] At his stronghold, the Seat of the Primus, he maintained a network of portals that linked the necropoli of each of the five houses.[14] He was personally involved in the design of at least one necropolis, Zerekriss, which he shaped with his bare hands.[15] In order to protect the Sepulcher of Knowledge, a tower storing the writings of the greatest military minds among the Necrolords, the Primus placed several guardians in the area around the structure and filled the Sepulcher itself with various traps.[16][17]

In the ancient past, the Primus detected treachery from his fellow Eternal One Zovaal.[9] He subsequently played a role in imprisoning Zovaal within the Maw and making him its Jailer.[9][18]

Ages later, the Primus noticed that the Jailer's influence was seeping outside of the Maw. Suspecting that Zovaal had worked with ancient allies during his original betrayal, the Primus left Maldraxxus to investigate the matter, leaving the margraves and barons of the realm to their own devices. His suspicions ultimately proved true, and the Jailer brought about his defeat. However, due to his tactical genius, the Primus had foreseen a time when the Shadowlands would face grave peril and could only be saved by someone from outside the realm. Thus, before he departed Maldraxxus, he left behind a trail of messages and boons to help mortal outsiders set things right.[9][18] He placed a standing stone at the center of a lava pool in the House of the Chosen as a challenge of endurance and fortitude. In truth, this stone concealed an unfinished blade with no hilt, forged by the Primus himself[19] and enchanted with five runes representing the five ideal Maldraxxi traits.[4] Once fully empowered, this Blade of the Primus would act as a key allowing a worthy champion to access the Seat of the Primus[20] and discover its master's final message: a warning stating that the only hope for the Shadowlands was for all of the Eternal Ones to stand united once more, prevent the Jailer from escaping the Maw, and protect the Arbiter.[18]


The Primus owned a set of powerful armor. It is said that when he disappeared, the armor pieces were scattered.[21] Over the course of the Necrolords Campaign, Necrolord adventurers gradually obtain the different pieces and place them on the Primus' statue within the Seat.


The Voice of the Primus during Through the Fire and Flames.
Maldraxxus storyline
Main article: Through the Fire and Flames#Notes
Main article: The Blade of the Primus#Notes
Main article: Straight to the Heart#Notes
Main article: In The Flesh#Notes
Main article: Fit For a Margrave#Notes
Main article: In Death We Are Truly Tested#Notes
Main article: The Door to the Unknown#Notes
Necrolords Campaign
Main article: Power of the Primus#Notes
Main article: Bindings of Fleshcrafting (quest)#Notes
Main article: Pride of Place#Notes
Main article: Pauldrons of Imperium (quest)#Notes
Main article: Staff of the Primus (quest)#Notes

Notes and trivia

  • The Primus' exact time of disappearance is unknown, but he has been gone a long time.[5][25][26][27] Baroness Draka (who died and arrived in Maldraxxus during the First War) and Baroness Vashj (who arrived during the Invasion of Outland) both express familiarity with the Primus and are able to recognize his personal weapon style,[28][29] but it's not clear if they ever personally met the Eternal One. Plague Deviser Marileth's journal implies that his disappearance may have occurred near the same time as the beginning of the anima drought.[30] At some point before the fall of the House of Plagues, Margrave Stradama wrote a coded letter to an unknown recipient discussing the fate of the Primus or possibly someone else.[31]
  • The Primus depiction and motifs is so far based upon imperial motifs from antiquity as well as Catholic themes and general "death being" themes.
    • His appearance as a skeletal figure in a hooded robe resembles common depictions of the Grim Reaper.
    • The Primus' visage is depicted on the Antiquated Verdigris Coin, a practice used since antiquity in coins to depict the rulers of the moment they were minted.
    • The "Primus" title in real life occurs rarely, based upon the Latin phrase and concept of primus inter pares in the context of the Bishop of Rome being the "first" among the five Bishops of the Pentarchy during Antiquity.
    • This ecclesial connection is also seen in how the name "Primus" is translated in localizations of World of Warcraft. In Spanish, he is referred to as El Prelado ("The Prelate"), and the Seat of the Primus is translated as Trono del Prelado ("Throne of the Prelate"), which in real life would refer to a cathedral.


This article or section includes speculation, observations or opinions possibly supported by lore or by Blizzard officials. It should not be taken as representing official lore.
  • There are theories that the Runecarver is the Primus, which given the cinematic where both the Helm of Domination and Frostmourne were extracted from his mind, would place his disappearance at the very latest sometime during the First War or before the Second War, which is when Draka would've possibly met the Primus. The addition of a runeforge in the Seat of the Primus in patch 9.0.5 further adds to this theory. Other theories are that Margrave Akarek is not dead and was also the Primus, using two identities to be able to be the master spy he was.
  • The Standing Rock that the Primus placed in the House of the Chosen that contained the Blade of the Primus uses the same model introduced in Battle for Azeroth for the vrykul in Jorundall and kvaldir in the Dread Chain. While the curse of flesh was caused by Yogg-Saron, and the creation of the kvaldir is due to Helya, there may be more to the transition from vrykul to human than has been explained. The re-use of this asset could indicate yet another connection between the Shadowlands and Northrend.



  1. ^ Cass Marshall 2020-09-24. World of Warcraft’s Maldraxxus is the grittiest zone in the Shadowlands. Polygon. Archived from the original on 2020-09-24.
  2. ^ a b Blizzard Entertainment Blizzard Entertainment 2020-06-11. Shadowlands Preview: Maldraxxus and the Necrolord Covenant. Archived from the original on 2020-06-11.
  3. ^ N [52] The Path to Glory
  4. ^ a b N [52] Meet the Margrave
  5. ^ a b N [60] Welcome To Our House: Baroness Draka yells: Though the Primus has long been absent from these halls, the Maw Walker embodies the virtues he instilled in the five houses.
  6. ^ N [52] The Seat of the Primus
  7. ^ N [60] Power of the Primus
  8. ^ Blizzard Entertainment Blizzard Entertainment. Necrolord - Covenants - Shadowlands. Retrieved on 2020-06-11.
  9. ^ a b c d e Garth Holden 2020-09-24. A deep dive into Maldraxxus, the defenders of Death. SA Gamer. Archived from the original on 2020-09-24.
  10. ^ N [52] Land of Opportunity
  11. ^ N [60WQ] Battles Won Long Ago
  12. ^ N [60WQ] Battles Won Long Ago
  13. ^ N [52] Forging a Champion
  14. ^ N [60] Powering the Portals
  15. ^ a b N [60] Search the Place
  16. ^ N [54] Read Between the Lines
  17. ^ N [54] Secrets Among the Shelves
  18. ^ a b c N [54] The Door to the Unknown
  19. ^ N [52] Through the Fire and Flames
  20. ^ N [52] The Seat of the Primus
  21. ^ a b N [60] Bindings of Fleshcrafting
  22. ^ N [60] The Mantle Returned
  23. ^ N [60] Pauldrons of Imperium
  24. ^ N [60] Staff of the Primus
  25. ^ Sybia 2020-09-24. WoW Shadowlands : Interview exclusive de Steve Danuser à propos de Maldraxxus (in French). Millenium. Archived from the original on 2020-09-24.
  26. ^ N [52] Land of Opportunity: Margrave Gharmal says: The Primus is long gone, Krexus!
  27. ^ N [55] I Moustache You to Lend a Hand
  28. ^ N [52] Arms for the Poor
  29. ^ N [52] Straight to the Heart
  30. ^ N [53] Applied Science: Plague Deviser Marileth says: In the Primus's absence, civil war is surely on the horizon. Margrave Stradama confides her fears in me. Without anima, our work--and thus our power--has stagnated.
  31. ^ N [60] A Valuable Find: Plaguefall

External links

Voice of the Primus Visions of the Primus