An artifact is a rare and unique object. Most players sacrifice to their god because gods sometimes provide artifacts as gifts. Some NetHack players like to wish for artifacts, although it has been argued that a Barbarian pretending to know the correct spelling of the Eye of the Aethiopica is somewhat out-of-style.
The, the English definite article, is placed before the name of any artifact. For example, the blessed +2 Magicbane or the Orb of Fate. True to grammar, there can only be one of each artifact; if one that has already been generated (or your own quest artifact) is loaded in a bones level, it is converted into its base item type.
Shopkeepers like to rip off adventurers who buy or sell artifacts. They charge four times normal price for them, but only pay a fourth of the normal selling price for them. Thus, one should use a pet to steal any artifacts generated in shops, and never sell them unless desperate for cash.
List of artifacts
- See Source:artilist.h or the article for each artifact for more details.
These are unique and indestructible, but not artifacts. They can be named ("The Amulet of Yendor named REAL"), and their creation does not decrease the odds of getting a wished-for artifact.
|Artifact name||Base item type||Alignment||Intelligent||Special properties||Obtaining|
|Carried||Used (Worn, Wielded, Applied, or Read)||Invoked|
|Bell of Opening||bell (silver bell)||unaligned||No||Invocation ritual. Detect secret doors & traps. Opening.||Obtained from your quest nemesis.|
|Book of the Dead||spellbook (papyrus spellbook)||unaligned||No||Invocation ritual. Tame undead. Raise the dead.||Obtained from the Wizard of Yendor.|
|Candelabrum of Invocation||candelabrum||unaligned||No||Invocation ritual. Radius 4 light.||Obtained from Vlad the Impaler.|
- shk.c, line 1917
- shk.c, line 2853
- The hero's quest artifact and any guaranteed sacrifice gifts are adjusted to the hero's starting alignment. For example, for a wizard who starts chaotic, Magicbane and The Eye of the Aethiopica are generated chaotic. See Source:artifact.c#line54.