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"You are not to look the master in the eye."
This article contains spoilers! Please, refrain yourself from reading its content if you haven't read The Dying of the Light.
The Council of Elders
China sorrows.JPG
China Sorrows, the current Grand Mage of the Irish Sanctuary
Group Information
Location Global
Date Founded Before the events of Skulduggery Pleasant
Notable Members Ghastly Bespoke, Erskine Ravel, Thurid Guild

The Council of Elders were a group of three sorcerers that lead their countries' Sanctuary. The Elders were led by a Grand Mage who was always one of the three Elders. The Elders gave orders to the sorcerers and Cleavers.

During the years 2007-2013, Ireland had an unusual number of Elders as many were either killed or imprisoned.

China Sorrows became Grand Mage following the imprisonment of Erskine Ravel. No other Elders were elected.


Before the Sanctuaries existed, there were magical communities. Each of these was ruled by twelve village elders. Each of these twelve would oversee a different aspect of village life, but, when the time came to make important decisions, all twelve votes were counted equally. When the Sanctuaries were established twelve were cut down to three.


One way that a new Council was chosen was through a vote. A person was nominated, and then a choice few of the magical community vote on who should be in the Council.

Decisions were typically made by voting.

They never met with mortal leaders due to a policy of non-interference.

The Elders' Journals

"There are three hundred and forty-four Journals."
"All big leather-bound books, a thousand pages long. Single Spaced."
"Dear God."
Skulduggery Pleasant describes the Elder Journals to an increasingly horrified Grand Mage Erskine Ravel, Kingdom of the Wicked

These are a collection of 344 journals of past Elders for Elder's eyes only that they are required to read upon assuming command. This does not necessarily mean that it happens, as shown by Erskine Ravel and Ghastly Bespoke's cluelessness over the contents of the Elder journals.

Known Elders

See Category:Elders for a full list.

Irish Sanctuary

Current Elders

Former Elders

British Sanctuary

Former Elders

The American Sanctuary

Former Elders

The German Sanctuary

Current Elders

  • Johann Starke (Elder)

Former Elders

  • Dedrich Wahrheit (Grand Mage, deceased)

The Russian Sanctuary

Current Elders

  • Dragunov (Grand Mage)

The French Sanctuary

Current Elders

  • Mandat (Grand Mage)

Former Elders

  • Trebuchet  (Grand Mage; deceased)
  • Mandat - Elder (formerly)

The Australian Sanctuary

Former Elders

  • Karrik (Grand Mage; deceased)


  • Morwenna Crow is the only Necromancer to be in the Council of Elders and also the only female Elder in the books until Mortal Coil.
  • Madame Mist is the first Children of the Spider member to serve on the Council.
  • In the years 2007-2013, at least one member was either corrupt or had a hidden agenda.

See also