Dresden Files

Heinrich Kemmler

714pages on
this wiki

Heinrich Kemmler was a male human, a dark wizard and necromancer. He first appears in Dead Beat.


Kemmler is considered to be one of the most powerful warlocks and necromancers of all time. He practiced what he called 'true magic' in which magic is used to control life and death. His main focus was necromancy, for which he was renowned. He was deemed such a risk that the entire White Council hunted him down in 1961.[1]

Bob said Kemmler was "sick, evil",  "insane", which says a lot coming from Bob who doesn't comprehend evil.[1] Mab said that he was a "Madman and a monster".[2]

Kemmler once owned Bob for forty years, whose mindset he warped considerably.[1] Bob forgot most of this time, either by choice or by compulsion.[1]

He had power over the dead and demons, pals with most of the Vampire courts, every "nasty" in Europe,  and some of the scarier Faeries.[1] He had his own cadre of apprentices and thugs: "Baby Kemmlers",[1] who followed him in his footsteps and practiced the darker arts.[1]

Kemmler had learned a way to bind his will to shades, not just the dead, to devour them in order to feed his own power. It was what allowed him to defy the entire White Council for so long. This secret of using ancient spirits in this way for the Darkhallow is written in The Word of Kemmler.[2]

He wrote, and self-published a number of magical texts:[1] The Word of Heinrich Kemmler, The Blood of Kemmler, The Mind of Kemmler, The Heart of Kemmler

In The Word of Kemmler he spelled out the recipe for the Darkhallow. He was attemting the darkhallow himself when he was defeated by the White Council.(ref?)

Biography Edit

Kemmler's power was so great that, in 1961, it took the entire White Council: the Merlin the Senior Council, the Wardens, and the "brute squad" out of Archangel, plus every wizards and ally that they could find in order to destroy him. They had killed him several times. After the time the White Council killed him in the early ninteenth century, they chose not to take any chances.[1]

Kemmler has been killed by the White Council seven times over the course of two wars with him.[3] The first being in 1890's, again the at conclusion of WW2 and most recently in 1961.[1]

He was responsible for WWI, the whole thing. There was about 150 years of history behind it and Kemmler had his hand in several facets of it. He vanished after WWI then reappeared in WWII when he animated mass graves and rampaged through Eastern Europe. It's uncertain how many he actually killed.[1]

Justin DuMorne, a Warden at the time that the council destroyed Kemmler, pulled Bob out of the ruins of  Kemmler's lab—subsequently, Harry pulled Bob out of the ruins of DuMorne's lab. [1]

In the series Edit

Ghost StoryEdit

Main article: Ghost Story

In Ghost Story, during a conversation with Evil Bob, Harry was told that Kemmler would have been interested in him as a disciple, implying that they may have been similar when younger.[4]

Kemmler is mentioned because one of Kemmler's HeirsCorpsetaker—is back as the Grey Ghost seeking to take over Mortimer Lindquist's body by torturing him into giving his consent.[5]

Cold DaysEdit

Main article: Cold Days

In Cold Days, Harry learns from Bob that Halloween night is the only time that the Darkhallow could turn a wizard into an Immortal since. This is because Halloween Night is the only time of the year when the "locked stasis of immortality becomes malleable"—they can add new power to their mantles of immortality by feeding: taking in new energy. He also learn that Halloween is the only time they are vulnerable to being killed.[6]

The Heirs of Kemmler Edit

Main article: Heirs of Kemmler

The Heirs of Kemmler intend to call up ancients spirits using the Erlking and then devour them for power on Halloween Night during the powerful Darkhallow spell that will turn one of them into a god-like being with ungodly powers.[2]

Darkhallow Edit

Main article: Darkhallow


Evil Bob: The Word of Kemmler contains: "Knowledge. Truth. Power. The master wrote down his teachings, wizard, so that those who came after him could learn from him. Could learn about the true power of Magic. What you call magic is nothing more than parlor ticks beside the power to master life and death itself." [1]

Speculation Edit

  • Kemmler is possibly named after the master necromancer of the same name from the Warhammer fantasy table top game.
  • Kemmler may also be partially based on William Kemmler- who on August 6th, 1890, was the first man executed through the use of the electric chair.
  • Perhaps Kemmler is named after Heinrich Himmler, the head of the Hitler's S.S., given the tendency in Anglicized pronunciation to say "Heinrick Hemmler" which sounds similar to "Heinrich Kemmler".

In Cold Days, Harry learns that it is only on Halloween night the Darkhallow ritual can turn a wizard into an Immortal. Halloween night is when the locked status of immortality becomes malleable and an Immortal can add power to his mantle by feeding on energy.[6] Given that Kemmler was killed carefully on Halloween (ref?) night in 1961, it is possible that he became an Immortal on Halloween long before he attempetd the Darkhallow. This could explain why it is mentioned in Ghost Story, that the White Council killed Kemmler seven times before it became permanent—the last and final one being on Halloween night in 1961 which happens the only night of the year that Immortals can be truly killed. [3]

References Edit

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 Dead Beat, ch. 3
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Dead Beat, ch. 21
  3. 3.0 3.1 Ghost Story, ch. 17
  4. Ghost Story, ch. 44
  5. Ghost Story, ch. 28
  6. 6.0 6.1 Cold Days, ch. 11

See alsoEdit

Around Wikia's network

Random Wiki