The Witness of Conclave is an Imperial title created by the Imperial Senate in Winter 384YE following calls in the Conclave and Imperial Synod in Autumn 384YE. After a rocky start, the responsibilities of the title were amended at the following summit, providing the Witness with additional regalia.

During scrutiny, the Constitutional Court expressed some caution around the use of the word "inquisit" in the Senate motion that created the title. They determined however that the word is simply a description of what the title should do as part of its responsibilities, rather than an attempt to give a title appointed by the Imperial Conclave power in the Imperial Synod.


The Witness is responsible for identifying sorcerers, and those who should no longer be sorcerers, in the Empire, and is expected to investigate and/or inquisit those with an Imperial Conclave title, to ensure they are not becoming corrupt with power. They are also charged with identifying those who use magic to the detriment of the Empire, and identifying those who treat with eternals to the detriment of fellow Imperial citizens.

Although the Witness has a responsibility to investigate and/or inquisit, unless they maintain a congregation and are thus a Member of the Synod, they are unable to raise their own Judgements of Inquisition.



The Witness of Conclave is empowered to raise a single Declaration of Sorcery each summit to the agenda for debate during a Conclave session. The Civil Service will provide the Witness of Conclave with a single writ - to submit their declaration to the Conclave agenda they should complete the writ and hand it to the office of the Prefect of the Conclave at least one hour before the Conclave session begins.

Unlike a grandmaster, the Witness of Conclave is personally responsible for any presentation. While a proxy may be appointed to deliver the presentation, their declaration is recorded as having come from the Witness of Conclave.


The Witness receives several pieces of regalia, provided via support from the three groups that originally called for the creation of the title.

A small group of magisters from the Umbral Shroud in Necropolis endowed the title with the Lantern Ring as regalia. The ring allows a wearer versed in the insight ceremony who performs a thorough insight to discover if the person whose aura they are observing has recently visited a chamber between worlds. It will sometimes reveal what realm that chamber was associated with, as well. The Umbral Shroud themselves are a once powerful group of magisters whose numbers have dwindled steadily since the reign of Empress Giselle. They wished to pass on this unique artefact to the Empire in the hope that it could once more serve its true purpose; ensuring that those who deal with eternals are doing so virtuously, and not seeking to make secret agreements to the detriment of fellow Imperial citizens.

Each year at the Spring Equinox, the Witness receives a Thornpath Sash created by the vates of the Lost Lore Steading in Miaren, in respect of the title's responsibility to actively investigate anyone with an Imperial title appointed by the Conclave, and ensure that they are not becoming corrupted by their power. This rare magical item is a focus that grants an additional rank of Autumn Lore when performing Ties that Bind or Hand of the Maker, and an additional rank of Day lore when performing Bright Lantern of Ophis or Eye of the High Places. The sash is intended to help the title-holder gather all the evidence they need to secure a successful declaration of sorcery. If the Witness loses their position, then the item must be given to the new Witness with all appropriate haste. The Witness is encouraged to take all appropriate precautions to keep this item safe.

Each season Alisoun Bathwater and her fellow threshers in the Marches provide the Witness with a Thresher's Cudgel, hallowed with the Hallowing of the Torch to serve as a reminder of what needs to be done. In Alisoun's opinion, anyone the Conclave puts in charge of hunting out sorcerers will need a gang to support them who knows how to break both staves and heads. These cudgels will be provided as long as the Witness remains committed to identifying anyone using magic to the detriment of their neighbours, and that the Conclave doesn't seek to limit who they can investigate.


The appointment, replacement, or removal of the Witness of Conclave is made by the Declaration of Candidacy as part of a Conclave session. The Witness serves until they are replaced by another magician using the Declaration of Candidacy. As a title in the Conclave, they cannot be revoked.

Bryn Netherwatch, Witness of Conclave
Winter Solstice 385YEThe MarchesDuncan of Ashill
Spring Equinox 385YEUrizenBryn Netherwatch

Recent Elections

This title is currently held by Duncan of Ashill; it can be reelected at any summit by a declaration of candidacy. The table to the right shows the citizens who have been elected to hold this title in the years since Empress Britta died.

The Title in Play

The role does not provide additional information about events in the Empire, nor allow the player holding it to request special reports or downtime actions. These details are assumed to be below the abstraction layer. The title holder is encouraged to create their own stories about their activities within reasonable limits and to get involved in events appropriate to their title during the game, but they do not have any powers beyond those explicitly listed in the section on powers.

These details exist partly to provide context and character to the role - and partly to allow our writers to use the title as a plot hook. Plot that involves the position will be rare - but all the campaign positions in Empire have these details to create the potential for it to happen.