Oath of Martyrdom (5e Subclass)

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Author: T.G. Oskar (talk)
Date Created: 5 October, 2014
Status: Complete
Editing: Clarity edits only please
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This is a Sacred Oath for a 5th ed. paladin.

Oath of Martyrdom[edit]

The Oath of Martyrdom is perhaps the most selfless of all oaths: to protect and serve, to the death if necessary. They are almost universally known as martyrs, though some also call them sacred defenders, hospitalers or comforters. A paladin swearing an Oath of Martyrdom is not a death-seeker; quite the contrary, it holds life at the highest value, to the extent of being willing to sacrifice something so priceless for something of even greater worth. Their adornments reflect their choice in life: red and purple colors representing blood and penitence (respectively), and sometimes the relic of another holy martyr to remind the paladin of its Oath. Perhaps the best known example of paladins who follow the Oath of Martyrdom are the followers of Ilmater, the Bloodied God of the Faerunian pantheon, the grand exemplar of the tenets of the oath.

Tenets of Martyrdom[edit]

Contrary to other oaths, paladins following the Oath of Martyrdom generally follow all tenets related to it. The tenets of this Oath involve, at their core, understanding and being a witness to said understanding; the importance of understanding the true value of sacrifice, why endure pain and suffering for the sake of others, and the importance of life. Paladins upholding these tenets must be willing to give even their lives for the good-will of others, so all of them are universally good: few, if any, are neutral. The essential principles of the Oath are as such:

Life is Sacred and Invaluable. I will not take the life of another if I can help it; if I must do so, I will respect it to the very end.
End the Suffering of Others. Pain and suffering are enemies of the sanctity of life. I must do all that I can to end pain and suffering, to the extent that I can.
Ease the Suffering of Others. If I cannot end with suffering no matter what I try, I will partake willingly of their suffering to bear witness of a better tomorrow.
Death is the Ultimate Sacrifice. If I must give my sacred, priceless life, it shall be for something greater. I will not give my life for any less.

Oath of Martyrdom Spells

Paladin Level Spells  
1st Healing Word, Sanctuary 
3rd Lesser Restoration, Warding Bond 
5th Beacon of Hope, Revivify 
7th Aura of Life, Death Ward 
9th Mass Cure Wounds, Raise Dead

Channel Divinity[edit]

When you take this oath at 3rd level, you gain the following Channel Divinity option.

Knight's Move. You can use your Channel Divinity to swap places with any ally. As a reaction, choose one ally within 60 ft. of your size or smaller that you can see that is about to be attacked. You instantly teleport to the spot your ally was located and your ally moves to your previous spot, swapping places. You may use this ability before or after the result of the attack roll is known. If you use this ability before the attack roll, you can resist the attack as normal, but if done after, you must take the effects of the attack, even if you would have otherwise ignored it.

Spare the Dying[edit]

At 3rd level, you can prevent others from dying with a simple touch. You gain the Spare the Dying cantrip if you don't already know it.

Aura of Martyrdom[edit]

Beginning at 7th level, you ease the pain of others around you by partaking of their wounds. Allies within 10 ft. of you ignore an amount of damage equal to twice your Charisma modifier, but all damage ignored is taken by you.

At 18th level, the range of this aura increases to 30 ft.


Starting at 15th level, you take on the wounds of others by touch. When using your Lay on Hands ability, you can heal 1 additional hit point of damage to an ally for every point of damage you are wiling to take. You can also take 5 points of damage to remove any one disease or poison, as if you had spent the points from your pool. You may use this ability even if you have no points in your pool of healing power.

Furthermore, you may use your Lay on Hands ability on any ally within range of your Aura of Martyrdom.

Ultimate Sacrifice[edit]

At 20th level, you enter a state where pain and wounds are pointless, as you accept death willingly. Using your action, you suffuse your body with all your living energy. While on this state, light emerges from your eyes and mouth, as well as any wound you take. For 1 minute or until the end of the battle, you gain the following benefits:

  • You remain alive and conscious even if you would be otherwise taken to 0 hit points. You need not make any death saves. Track all damage you would have otherwise taken (including damage from a Disintegrate effect or from the Stigmata Channel Divinity); once the effect is over, you take all this damage instantly. If this damage takes you to 0 or less Hit Points, you make death saves as usual (or die instantly from massive damage, if applicable).
  • Your Aura of Martyrdom instead absorbs an amount of damage equal to five times your Charisma modifier.
  • You and all allies within 30 ft. of you gain immunity to ability damage, necrotic damage and all death effects. You also gain immunity to all spells that restore hit point damage.

Once you use this ability, you can't use it again until you finished a long rest. You also recover it if you spent at least 24 hours dead before being revived.

Link to forum: http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?369876-Sacred-Oath-Oath-of-Martyrdom

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AuthorT.G. Oskar +
ClassPaladin +
Identifier5e Subclass +
RatingUnrated +
SummaryThe Oath of Martyrdom is perhaps the most selfless of all oaths: to protect and serve, to the death if necessary +
TitleOath of Martyrdom +