If you rob a tob do you steal from the dead?


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

Scarab Sages

So quick question brought on from listening to a podcast. Osirions like Egyptians where buried with their possessions to take them to the afterlife. Mummys mask starts off with you robbing tombs (with permission). As we know gods are real in Golarion so if you stole something from an ancient Osirion tomb would it vanish from the person in the afterlife?


Petitioners don't have any gear, and only special outsiders (have some unique circumstance in story like exposure to a demigod's artifact designed to do that, or establishing a massive civilization) and some Cassisians retain anything of the petitioners that formed them.


It's a fine line between archeology and grave robbing.

"Whats the difference?"

"I have a degree!"

Scarab Sages

deuxhero wrote:
Petitioners don't have any gear, and only special outsiders (have some unique circumstance in story like exposure to a demigod's artifact designed to do that, or establishing a massive civilization) and some Cassisians retain anything of the petitioners that formed them.

So basiclly the entire ancient osirion belief of taking things with you is a lie?


The description of the Shabti suggests that there's ways of manipulating your afterlife a little, but grave goods? No sign that in Golarion-reality they're anything more than wishful thinking.


then again it is still grave-robbing - some paladins (and other good characters) are going to have hard time justifying this.


In Mummy's Mask the grave goods are to help someone until their soul is judged.
The pharaoh has evidently decided that all of the souls in the necropolis have already been judged and therefore they no longer need their grave goods.

So, lore-wise, if the grave goods are with someone in the afterlife they'd have it until their soul is judged and go to whichever plane they join. Therefore, so long as the Ruby Prince is correct, the dead souls aren't using their grave goods anymore.


It might depend on the local law. If the dead can still be the legal owner of the item in question, it is presumably theft. Conversely, if all their goods and chattels were bequeathed to someone else (perhaps their children), it's stealing from them. If the item was not mentioned in the will, it might be considered lost, and lost property or salvage laws apply. If the deceased died intestate, the goods might belong to the crown. That crown may not be a valid legal entity under current jurisdiction if the state in question was conquered in the intervening period.

Individual legal systems may or may not distinguish between death and undeath, and may have special provisions regarding resurrection.

IANAL so I suggest you consult a qualified professional.


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...Are we seriously talking about adventurers being squeamish about taking things from the long dead when they take the possessions of beings they just killed? Adventuring is built on the premise that you kill something and loot the corpse. Tomb robbing is just attempting to cut out the killing part of it. So in a way, its less morally ambiguous than normal adventuring.


The premise is not foreign in Golarion. A form of this can be seen with ghosts. They retain incorporeal copies of valued items, but if another creature takes the physical item, the spirit loses it in the afterlife.

There's obviously differences, but the concept (and proof of such occurrences) are known in some examples.

Scarab Sages

Meirril wrote:
...Are we seriously talking about adventurers being squeamish about taking things from the long dead when they take the possessions of beings they just killed? Adventuring is built on the premise that you kill something and loot the corpse. Tomb robbing is just attempting to cut out the killing part of it. So in a way, its less morally ambiguous than normal adventuring.

Not squeemish just curious if you take "mummified cat A" from a tomb does "Undead cat A" dissapear from Person A's afterlife or does the cat remain for them to play with as it was originally interred with them?

So laying aside how things work how would you handle it if the interred objects did go wtih the person to the afterlife.


Quote:
Adventuring is built on the premise that you kill something and loot the corpse.

Most of my characters would be disturbed by this definition. Adventuring is... going out and having adventures. Looting corpses is something that happens occasionally; if it's your main goal you are actually a Brigand/Marauder/Pillager.

Sir Belmont, Paladin of Iomedae, vigorously opposed the one PFS mission that called explicitly for raided a Taldon noble's tomb. He was convinced to go along only when it was explained that the group were trying to get to the tomb before the Aspis Consortium could loot the place. At that point, he sadly decided it was more in the nature of a race & the lesser of two evils.

Erm, I find that I am running off on a tangent. Stealing from the dead? that would depend on the religion of both the Tomb Raider & the deceased. Certainly this would be true of Osiriani tombs.


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Depends on applicable laws. There's no universally applicable standard on whether dead people can own property. Even if they can't, it's possible that ownership of such property is retained by others (e.g., their family, the owners of place of burial, the local government, the church), again depending on the local laws.

Regardless, if the spirits of the dead think that their stuff still belongs do them, they may still take offense if you take it without their permission. There are plenty of Paizo-published examples of this. (Crypt of the Everflame comes to mind.)


I think "Rob a Tob" and "There's a frog in your mount" are my two favorite RPG memes.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

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Senko wrote:
So quick question brought on from listening to a podcast. Osirions like Egyptians where buried with their possessions to take them to the afterlife. Mummys mask starts off with you robbing tombs (with permission). As we know gods are real in Golarion so if you stole something from an ancient Osirion tomb would it vanish from the person in the afterlife?

Pre-second edition, most of the tomb exploring in Osirion was actually authorized and licensed by the Osiriani government, specifically allowed by the Ruby Prince, Khemet III. So if you're playing e.g. Mummy's Mask, the government has specifically authorized you to go into these tombs and you can't reasonably be assumed to be stealing, even by (most) paladin-types.

Other tombs in other locales may have different circumstances, and since Khemet III reverted his decision to allow exploration of Osirion's tombs, most current-day tomb "exploration" in Osirion is illegal and might constitute theft or worse.

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