The Phyrexian Symbol (Again)

Posted in Arcana on May 18, 2011

By Monty Ashley

The Phyrexian symbol has been around for a long time, as established in Arcanas in 2004, 2005, and 2009. In the distant past, it tended to show up as a background element in card art, like the Seventh Edition version of Yawgmoth's Edict:

Yawgmoth's Edict | Art by Donato Giancola

Because we now have a set actually called New Phyrexia, this seems like a logical time to revisit this. But the Phyrexian symbol is a bit more front-and-center than it used to be, and there's not much Arcana value in showing Blind Zealot and pointing out the Phyrexian symbol:

Blind Zealot | Art by Jana Schirmer & Johannes Voss

See, it's not as much fun to point out things that are in the foreground of the art. It's like saying "Did you know that there's a goblin in the art of Bloodcrazed Goblin?" If everyone just says, "Yeah, I did. It's right there," then the Arcana hasn't done its job.

Luckily, New Phyrexia has a couple of cards that have some Phyrexian symbols you might not have noticed, thus justifying this Arcana's existence. For example, you might not have noticed the fence in Norn's Annex:

Norn's Annex | Art by James Paick

See? The fence is made up of a lot of Phyrexian symbols!

...Okay, some of you aren't impressed. "We saw that right away," you say. Try this on for size:

That, of course, is Kiln Walker. Oh, what's that? You don't see the hidden Phyrexian symbol? You've come crawling back in apology? Okay, then. To see the symbol, go ahead and click the picture. There you go!

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