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For the prophecy mentioned in Diablo II, see The Prophecies of the Final Day.

"The Prophecy of the End Days is contained within the Horadric tomes I inherited from my ancestor Jered Cain. It is a warning to those who could interpret it regarding Hell's ultimate invasion of our world, written by many different people throughout history in many different lands. All known versions of the Prophecy are incomplete. I have spent a good part of the past twenty years trying to complete it. I am certain it holds the answers to defeating the Lords of Hell."

Deckard Cain(src)

The Prophecy of the End of Days is a prophecy compiled by Deckard Cain.

Lore

"But what of the texts? The Zakarum tomes warn of a falling star. The Horadric scrolls spoke of the dead rising and the Lord of Lies. The Prophecy of the End Days says that at the end of all things, the first sign shall appear in the Heavens!"
"Yes, you’ve been telling me about the texts since I was eight years old, Uncle. I just don’t think we should read too much into them."

Cain and Leah discussing the prophecy(src)

The prophecy is a warning in regards to Hell's final invasion of Sanctuary. In truth, the prophecy is not one single text, but multiple texts. The prophecy was written by many different people throughout history in many different lands. These include writings of both the Horadrim (warning of the rising dead and Belial), and the Zakarum (speaking of the Fallen Star. However, no one single version was complete. Cain received his version from Horadric tomes, and after the destruction of Mount Arreat, spent close to twenty years trying to complete it.[1]

Mikulov gained access to fragments of the prophecy. A scroll from jungle ruins in Torajan, a Zakarum prophecy in the caves of Westmarch, and one from the bowels of Bastion's Keep. The writings he obtained spoke of a coming war between darkness and light, and of the rising of the dead on the first day of Ratham. The writings were verified by the Patriarchs. However, this part of the prophecy (the rising of the dead) he, Cain, and the First Ones were able to prevent coming to pass.[2]

Adria also gained access to the prophecy, and concluded that it referred to the fragmentation of the Angiris Council.[3] Li-Ming was also aware of the prophecy (or related prophecies).[4]

Transcript

... And, at the End of Days, Wisdom shall be lost

as Justice falls upon the world of men.

Valor shall turn to Wrath -

and all Hope will be swallowed by Despair.

Death, at last, shall spread its wings over all -

as Fate lies shattered forever.[5]

Extra Text

Cain has voiced some other lines of the prophecy, though not necessarily recorded them. This version is as follows:

And, at the End of Days,

the first sign shall appear in the Heavens.

Justice shall fall upon the world of men.

The armies of Light and Shadow

shall clash across the fields of eternity.[6]

Horadric text pertaining to Garreth Rau went as follows:

And the High Heavens shall rain down upon Sanctuary as a false leader arises from the ashes...the tomb of Al Cut will be revealed, and the dead shall lay waste to mankind...[2]

Analysis

The prophecy's words each correspond to a virtue embodied by each of the archangels who are/were part of the Angiris Council, covering events before, during, and after Diablo's invasion of the High Heavens.

  • "Wisdom shall be lost": Malthael departed from the Council and Heaven at large after the Worldstone's destruction.[5]
  • "Justice shall fall upon the world of men": Because most of the Angiris Council refused to protect humanity against the forces of Hell in favor of the ancient laws of the High Heavens, Tyrael chose to become mortal and literally fell from Heaven to Sanctuary as the Fallen Star.[7]
  • "Valor shall turn to Wrath": This seems to refer to Imperius[5] Cain once voiced concern as to what would await Sanctuary if angels focused their wrath upon Sanctuary.[8] Indeed, even three millennia after the Sin War, Imperius possesses little love for humanity, even going so far as to threaten the Nephalem as the hero sought to defeat Diablo in Heaven.[9]
  • "Hope will be swallowed by Despair." Although brief, upon the beginning of Diablo's attack on the Silver City, Auriel was captured by Rakanoth, the Lord of Despair. The Nephalem saw to her freedom by destroying Rakanoth.[9]
  • "Death, at last, shall spread its wings over all": Malthael took on the Aspect of Death. To eradicate humanity, the last "demonic" force left,[10] he lead his Reapers against the mortal world, starting with Westmarch.[11] Although his plan was close to being fulfilled, he was defeated by the Nephalem.[12]
  • "As Fate lies shattered forever": The final line of the prophecy has yet to come to pass, at least prior to Malthael's fall.[13] Fate is the aspect of Itherael.[5] Of note, the Realms of Fate formed after Malthael's defeat, transforming Heaven and presenting a risk to Sanctuary,[14] as a result of the Nephalem's defeat of Diablo;[15] an event that, according to Talus'ar, was not meant to come to pass.[16]

References

  1. Diablo III, A Shattered Crown
  2. 2.0 2.1 The Order
  3. Book of Adria: A Diablo Bestiary
  4. Diablo III, Act I, The Legacy of Cain
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Book of Cain
  6. Diablo III, Intro Cinematic
  7. Diablo III, Act I
  8. Diablo III: Wrath
  9. 9.0 9.1 Diablo III, Act IV
  10. 2013-09-10, Malthael the bad guy... wait what?. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2013-09-11
  11. 2013-08-21, Diablo III: Reaper of Souls - Crusader Class Gameplay Demo. YouTube, accessed on 2013-09-08
  12. Diablo III, Act V
  13. 2013-08-23, Diablo III Reaper of Souls Interview with Josh Mosqueira GC2013. YouTube, accessed on 2013-09-08
  14. 2017-06-22, First Look: The Shrouded Moors & Beyond. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2017-06-24
  15. 2017-04-11, Necromancer Beta Now Live. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2017-04-16
  16. Diablo III, Act IV
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