Who Is: Zur

In this edition of "Who Is" on Magic Untapped, we take a look at Zur, an enchanter from Magic: The Gathering's Ice Age era who recently turned back up in the set Dominaria United.

In this edition of "Who Is" on Magic Untapped, we take a look at Zur, an enchanter from Magic: The Gathering's Ice Age era who recently turned back up in the set Dominaria United.

Video Transcript:

Welcome back to “Who Is” on Magic Untapped as we explore the origins and stories of various characters across the Magic: The Gathering multiverse.  I am Barry White.

Today, we take a look at Zur, a powerful wizard who emerged during the Ice Age period of Dominaria.


Zur, also known as Zur the Enchanter and Zur the Mad, is a powerful and nearly immortal wizard who came to be during Dominaria’s Ice Age.

Growing up and studying in the kingdom of Kjeldor, the brilliantly gifted, yet oddball mage found himself the rival of Gustha Ebbasdotter, Kjeldor’s royal mage.

He was obsessed with figuring out the secret of eternal life.  So obsessed, in fact, that it drove him slightly insane.  Okay, more than slightly.

So insane that Zur was, quite literally, exiled from the kingdom over his repeated attempts at achieving immortality.

In exile, however, Zur amassed quite the following.  A formidable number of mages and soldiers began following Zur, believing in his teachings.

In what could only be assumed as a crazy attempt at revenge, Zur sent his followers to attack his former homeland.  The effort, however, was thwarted thanks (in part) to the involvement of another seemingly ageless wizard and head of the School of the Unseen, Jodah.

Defeated, Zur ventured deep into the frozen wastes outside of Kjeldor and seemed to disappear from all record whatsoever, staying far away from the limelight as the planeswalker Freyalise, along with wizards Jodah and Jaya Ballard, cast the Ice Age ending World Spell and likewise having no involvement in the goings-on of the Cult of Rimewind during their Phyrexian-inspired raids on Kjeldor and neighboring Balduvia.

It reached the point that those who still remembered Zur simply assumed he had died, though the Zuran followers who remained believed that he had finally achieved his dream of eternal life.

As the Ice Age ended and the various glaciers and snowlands across the continent of Terisiare receeded, however, the latter argument would prove true.

Facing a new reality thanks to the changing climate, Zur and his followers found it hard to adapt.  The mad wizard once again led his followers to Kjeldor, though with different intentions than before.

Much to the surprise of the Kjeldorans, Zur simply asked for shelter and assistance – assistance that the ruler of Kjeldor, King Darien, was happy to provide.

Kjeldor welcomed the Zurans back into society, along with many other refugees who were struggling to adapt to the warming climate, as the diverse community would form what is known now as New Argive.

As for Zur, he really did achieve immortality and used his gift as an excuse to free himself from all earthly responsibilities.  He traveled Dominaria searching for a sense of purpose and meaning.

Thousands of years later, he resurfaced and met with an old foe, Jodah, who now headed up Dominaria’s Tolarian Academy.  The mad, immortal Zur asked the archmage for a job, and Jodah tasked him with becoming a professor at one of the Academy’s campuses.

Jodah, knowing all too well Zur’s tendencies, is keeping an eye on the mad mage, despite Zur’s assurances that he simply wants to “foster knowledge in the minds of the young” and is “definitely not up to anything…”


So, with the Phyrexians running rampant multiverse-wide, the planeswalker Geyadrone Dihada ursurping power at one of the Tolarian Academy’s campuses, and everything else going on currently with the Magic storyline, what do you think about Zur?

Is he, as he says “definitely not up to anything?”  Do you think he might be in league with the Phyrexians or Dihada?  Maybe he has his own plans yet to be revealed – nevermind the fact that we can easily see the skull from Necrotpotence and creatures seen on the card Mystic Rhemora – both card advantage cards – in the art of his latest card, Zur, the Schemer…

Depending on where the story goes, we just might find out.  Or maybe Zur’s simply ready for a nice, easy glide into retirement.

I suppose we’ll find out soon enough.

Thank you for watching this episode of Who Is on Magic Untapped.  If you like content like this, please remember to like this video and subscribe to the channel.  Also, if you’d like to support us further, we have a tip jar on Patreon.

Have a magical day! 

Barry White

Barry White is a longtime Magic: The Gathering player, having started in 1994 shortly before the release of 'Fallen Empires.' After graduating from the University of Nevada, Reno, he went on to a 15-year journalism career as a writer, reporter, and videographer for three different ABC affiliate newsrooms.