Archangel of Knowledge

"The world is full of wonders, and the glory of God will reveal itself to those who seek it out."

[Dissonance] [Choir Attunements] [Servitor Attunements] [Distinctions] [Relations] [Rites] [Invocation]

Raphael ("God has healed"), the Archangel of Knowledge, was not one of the first angels created, but a very early creation, present when the Earth was given form and substance. Raphael was the most beautiful of all the angels (with the exception of Lucifer) -- Raphael's Elohite androgyny did not give the Power a sexless look, but rather, all the grace and comeliness possible of either gender. No one could look upon Raphael and not perceive the Archangel as a paragon of feminine and masculine beauty.

(There is a legend that Raphael was the first of the Elohim, and that because the angel was too beautiful, all the Dynamis that followed were deliberately formed less perfectly, lest they not be as objective as Raphael and succumb to pride.)

Raphael exhibited boundless curiosity early on, and was given the task of recording all information, all knowledge. Only an Elohite could be given this task, since anyone else with access to all knowledge might not use it objectively, and thus could attempt (even unintentionally) to usurp God's role. Raphael maintained the Heavenly Library, and Servitors of Knowledge filled it with bits of knowledge brought from the farthest reaches of the universe. Although Raphael's role was often underestimated, the Archangel of Knowledge was certainly one of the most powerful Superiors who ever lived -- arguably the most powerful of all the "second generation" Archangels (those who followed the first seven -- see the Game Master's Guide, p. 92).

Raphael (along with Gabriel and Eli, under Yves' direction) was instrumental in bringing religion to mankind. Raphael's Word did not only apply to rational knowledge, but also spiritual knowledge -- it was at least as important that humans know God as it was for them to know the workings of His creation. Raphael encouraged the scholarly traditions of the Hebrews (and is often credited with teaching mankind literacy), and helped spread Christianity to overwhelm paganism, which Raphael loathed nearly as much as Uriel for its irrationalism and separation from the Divine. The Archangel of Knowledge remained neutral during the Islam debacle and Gabriel's trial, which some took to indicate disapproval. (Raphael did later support Islam, though, and came to be one of the four Archangels most honored by Muslims.)

In 1008 A.D., Legion, the (second) Demon Prince of Corruption became a threat so dire that Heaven and Hell allied for the first time to destroy the renegade Shedite Prince. In that battle, Raphael made the ultimate sacrifice; every iota of energy in the Archangel's being and Word was directed at Legion's celestial form. Legion was destroyed, but Raphael was no more.

(Another legend -- there are many regarding Raphael -- is that centuries later, Archangel Eli discovered an amazingly talented Remnant that was beyond his ability to heal, and brought him to Rome, where he became the artist known as Michaelangelo.)

Following Raphael's demise, most angels of Knowledge transferred to Yves' service, as the Archangel of Destiny took over most of Raphael's duties, and the Divine Library. Some (particularly those who were involved in the spread of religion) chose to serve Gabriel or Khalid instead. Thus, there are a fair number of angels still alive who possess attunements and Distinctions of Knowledge. The dissonance information, Rites, politics, and invocation modifiers given below only apply in a historical or alternate campaign where Raphael still lives, of course.


Angels of Knowledge should encourage humanity's natural curiosity. It is dissonant for them to prevent or hinder a human from obtaining information, even if that information would be harmful. However, they are not required to help someone find knowledge (though it is encouraged, unless that knowledge is dangerous).

Choir Attunements

Seraphim (Restricted)

Raphael's Seraphim are among the wisest of their Choir; and can read the Truth of the Symphony in written words. They do not receive penalties to their check digit (In Nomine, p. 57) when applying their resonance to recorded media. (It's up to the GM whether a Seraph with this attunement in the modern day would be able to apply it to film, electronic reproductions, and the like. One could argue that Raphael's Word still applies to all forms of knowledge, but one could also argue that without Raphael around to "upgrade" the attunements, they still only function as they would have when the Archangel was alive.)

Cherubim (Restricted)

Raphael's Cherubim have access to any knowledge possessed by those to whom they are attuned. They cannot read their attuned's current thoughts or feelings, but they can read his memories. They may also use any skill or Song known by their attuned, at the level the subject knows it, but only one at a time.

Ofanim (Restricted)

Ofanim of Knowledge can find any information they're looking for. They do not get penalties to their skill roll when using their resonance to enhance Area Knowledge rolls to find specific or subjective information, as other Ofanim do (In Nomine, p. 97). They may also use their resonance to reduce the time it takes to find specific information -- as a general rule, divide the normal time to look something up by the check digit of a successful resonance roll. Raphael's Ofanim can walk into a library and walk straight to the exact book they need, and more often than not, open it up to the relevant page.

Elohim (Restricted)

In addition to the normal information gained by their resonance, Elohim of Knowledge automatically learn what information (if any) their subject is currently seeking. On a check digit of 3+, they know why the subject wants to know this, and on a check digit of 5+, they know what the subject will do with it or how he will react if he gains the information he wants.

Malakim (Restricted)

It is given to Raphael's Malakim to purge information planted by the Enemy. They may apply their resonance to the written word, and know whether it was written by, or under the influence of, a diabolical servant. This includes lies (or truths!) told by a demon to an innocent mundane who merely transcribed them. With a check digit of 6, the Malakite will know if the writer was a demon. Of course, not everything written under diabolical influence is necessarily evil -- but if a Malakite of Knowledge determines that a piece of information was planted by servants of Hell, he may destroy it or otherwise make it inaccessible without suffering dissonance.

(This attunement can be applied to as large or small an excerpt as the Malakite likes. If he applies it to an entire book in which one paragraph was written by a demon, for example, he will learn only that some of the content was written under diabolical influence, but not exactly which content. Of course, he can start applying his resonance to smaller and smaller sections if he wants to narrow it down . . . )

Kyriotates (Restricted)

Raphael's Kyriotates are the best teachers in the universe, as they may implant knowledge in their hosts. After a Kyriotate of Knowledge leaves a host, he may leave any information he likes in his host's mind. (This includes skills and Songs, though the recipient must still pay character points for these). The host will not know how he knows it, but the knowledge will seem to come "naturally."

Mercurians (Restricted)

The resonance of a Mercurian of Knowledge will tell him a number of skills and Songs possessed by an individual equal to the check digit, in addition to the usual information. (The GM determines which ones are revealed -- usually in order of importance to the subject.) The Mercurian may use his resonance repeatedly to get complete "skill lists," or he may determine whether or not the subject possesses a specific skill or Song, one per resonance roll.

Raphael's Intercessionists also recognize writers, teachers, and librarians on sight.

Servitor Attunements


Strictly speaking, this is a subset of the Word of Knowledge, but Raphael was renowned for healing abilities (and was often mistakenly called the Archangel of Healing), and so many Servitors of Knowledge specialized in knowledge of healing.

This attunement allows the angel to infallibly diagnose what is wrong with someone, physiologically or psychologically, with a touch. (The angel must "lay on hands" for at least a few seconds -- momentary skin-to-skin contact won't do it.) It will detect injuries, diseases, poisons, and drugs, as well as dissonance, Discord, possession, and the influence of a Habbalite resonance.

Library Card

Yves was able to continue granting this attunement after Raphael passed away. It functions exactly like the Destiny Servitor Attunement (Heaven and Hell, p. 33).

Rite of Passage

Like Library Card (above), this was originally one of Raphael's Servitor Attunements before Yves inherited it (Heaven and Hell, p. 34). Raphael was much freer than Yves in granting it.


Vassal of Knowledge

The angel can comprehend any language, spoken or written, when he perceives it. (Yes, this includes the diabolical tongue.) This grants him understanding only -- if he wants to speak or write in the language, he needs to learn it normally (or use the Corporeal Song of Tongues).

Friend of the Wise

The angel has access (through the Symphony) to everything written by the hand of man. Of course, that's rather like having access to the Library of Congress, or the World Wide Web -- it may take you awhile to find the exact information you want. The character may utilize any information the player can find in written form (or any other media the GM deems appropriate -- see the Seraphim attunement, above, when considering whether the Internet, videotapes, and the like should count) as if the character also had that information. While the player is spending time digging for books and looking up information, game time continues to pass -- this represents how long it takes the Vassal to search through the vast Symphonic library in his head.

Also note that just because something is written down, doesn't mean it's accurate! The GM need not feel any obligation to be kind to smart-alecky players who thumb through their In Nomine supplements when invoking this Distinction . . .

Master of the Wisdom of Ages

The angel knows everything. Really.

Seriously, he knows everything that's written down. Given the sheer volume of information in his head, though, he may not always be able to recall what he needs to know when he needs to know it. Treat this as the Friend of the Wise Distinction, above, except that the player has -- theoretically -- unlimited time to look things up without any game time passing. (Theoretically because when the GM and/or players get tired of waiting, the GM can declare that the angel is standing there mumbling to himself.)


Raphael got along with nearly everyone, rarely becoming embroiled in Heavenly politics, despite being very much a presence in the Seraphim Council. Uriel and Dominic both felt at times that Raphael allowed humans too much information, but no one distrusted the Archangel of Knowledge.

Allied: Yves, Gabriel, Eli (Eli and Litheroy were allied to Raphael)
Associated: Dominic, Jean (Yves, Gabriel, and Jean were associated with Raphael)
Hostile: No one (No one was hostile to Raphael)

Basic Rites

Chance of Invocation: 2

Invocation Modifiers

(Bear in mind that these modifiers applied in ancient times, up to the Middle Ages, when scholarly teachers and universities were rare.)
+1 A non-fiction book
+2 A Bible, Quran, Talmud, or other religious volume written by hand
+3 A library
+4 A human with a Knowledge skill of 6, teaching that subject
+5 A multi-disciplined university
+6 The site of the leading edge of research into a new field

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