From the Library of Leng

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The letter V!ampires have class. It's their defining feature, at least in modern vampire literature. It is frequently true of Magic's Vampires as well, although that hasn't always been the case. The original Sengir Vampire was depicted as a hairless, monstrous predator, reaching out to suckle from a throbbing vein—more Max Schreck and less Bela Lugosi, in other words.

You could argue—and I would—that the character who brought class to Magic's Vampires was Baron Sengir, revealed in Homelands as the source of the mysterious name of Alpha's only bloodsucker. Magic's Vampires have explored both ends of that spectrum, from Skyshroud Vampire to Szadek, Lord of Secrets, but the Baron himself remains the very icon of vampiric charm in Magic.

This, in turn, underscores the power of Magic's legendary creatures to set the tone for entire races and settings. Ulgrotha, setting of the Homelands expansion and adopted home of Baron Sengir, had an extensive cast of characters, including the Baron's twisted relations, whose personalities shaped the setting and story behind the set.

Back "in the day," The Duelist magazine had a feature for a while called "From the Library of Leng." Each installment looked at one legendary creature in terms of its role in the story, its game play, and even the artist's rumination on the card's art.

For Vampire Week, we've dug up the "From the Library of Leng" entry on Baron Sengir himself. And while we were in the archives, we found two equally interesting pieces about the Baron's green-aligned adversary Autumn Willow and his rough contemporary, the equally evil Lord of Tresserhorn, who actually manages to bring a little class to Zombies as well.

The storyline sections use some antiquated terminology ("Dominia" rather than "the Multiverse," for example), but they shed light on what might otherwise be just big dumb fatties. The "Artist's Perspective" sections come straight from the source, providing a little artistic insight from three great Magic artists. The "Playing With" sections are obviously out of date ... but on the other hand, they'd be a great place to start gathering ideas for Elder Dragon Highlander decks centered on these three legendary creatures.


Kelly Digges
Daily MTG Editor

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