In a world rife with magical power and populated by wizards, dragons, and other magical beings, the Arcanist is the god who shepherds, teaches, and sometimes even embodies that power. This god is often also a deity of knowledge and learning, but in some pantheons those domains are separate. The nature and personality of the Arcanist typically reflects a culture’s attitude toward the practice of magic — a kindly Arcanist reflects a positive view of the role of magic in the world where wizards are often kindly sages, while an Arcanist who is grim and secretive might emerge in a culture where magic is shunned or outlawed, practiced by witches and dark sorcerers.
Hecate of the Olympian pantheon is a dark expression of the Arcanist. In the Pharaonic pantheon, Isis is an Arcanist revered at a popular level with countless charms and prayers, while Thoth, as god of knowledge, also represents the hidden mysteries of the universe, the understanding of which is expressed as magical power. In the Asgardian pantheon, Odin sacrificed an eye to gain the same kind of knowledge of hidden mysteries, while Freya is the goddess of enchantments and illusions. Mystra is the goddess of magic in the FORGOTTEN REALMS® pantheon, whose essence is the Weave that provides magic to the world, and Azuth is patron of wizards specifically. Among the gods of GREYHAWK®, Boccob is a god of knowledge and magic, while Wee Jas is a darker god of death and necromancy. The DRAGONLANCE® pantheon has three gods of magic, corresponding to the three moons: good Solinari, neutral Lunitari, and evil Nuitari. These three gods are rarely worshiped, however.
The Arcanist is most often neutral, but can have any alignment depending on the deity’s attitude toward magic.