Communication with the dead for purposes of divination or magically influencing the course of natural events.
Necromancy is the act of conjuring the dead for divination. It dates back to Persia, Greece and Rome, and in the Middle Ages was widely practiced by magicians, sorcerers, and witches. It was condemned by the Catholic Church as "the agency of evil spirits," and in Elizabethan England was outlawed by the Witchcraft Act of 1604. Necromancy is not to be confused with conjuring devils or demons for help. Necromancy is the seeking of the spirits of the dead. The spirits are sought because they, being without physical bodies, are no longer limited by the earthly plane. Therefore, it is thought these spirits have access to information of the past and future which is not available to the living. It has been used to help find sunken or buried treasure, and whether or not a person was murdered or died from other causes.
A school of magic containing all spells that affect death. The classic uses of the term include undead, or controlling death, death spells which inflict death, and séances, communicating with the dead. However, some resurrection spells can also belong to this school because they dispel death.
A magician becomes a lich by using necromancy to prevent his or her death.