David Eddings Wiki
This page is written in the in-universe perspective of the "Garion" series' of novels.

Character Info


Full name and title(s)
Kal Zakath
Dread Emperor of Boundless Mallorea
The Empty One
Castle of Wizardry (first mentioned), The Mallorean
Physical Description
Pale olive skin, dark hair, no beard normally, dark eyes
Emperor of Mallorea

'Zakath, Dread Emperor of Boundless Mallorea, known as Kal Zakath after the death of Torak (Kal meaning "King and God"), was the Emperor of Mallorea during the reign of Belgarion.


As a young man, 'Zakath showed much promise to be a peaceful and enlightened ruler, but the king of the Murgos, Taur Urgas, in a failed attempt on 'Zakath's life, flooded Mallorea with his clumsy Murgo agents. The agents lifted his lover's family out of debt, and, in return, they became part of a plot to kill the Emperor. Unfortunately for Taur Urgas, the plot was uncovered and the family, including 'Zakath's lover, executed. It was not until later that it was realized that the girl knew nothing and was completely innocent of the plot. At this point, 'Zakath locked himself in his room for a month. When he returned, he was a cold-blooded monster bent on exterminating the entire Murgo race.

He ordered an army of Thulls, Nadraks, and Malloreans amassed to attack Taur Urgas's army at Thull Mardu. However, the Rivan Queen's army got in the way of his attack and killed a sizable chunk of his army. On orders from Zedar the Apostate, he captured Ce'Nedra, Polgara, and Durnik during the Battle of Thull Mardu and transported them to the tomb of Torak in Mallorea. During this time he spoke at length to Ce'Nedra about the appeal of power, and how he longed for what he saw as the inevitable conflict between himself and Belgarion for mastery of the world. 

After the Battle of Thull Mardu, he put all of the efforts of his military into subduing and conquering Cthol Murgos. His main goal was still revenge on the Urga Dynasty for what they did to him, despite the fact that Taur Urgas was dead. He now focused on destroying Taur Urgas's son, King Urgit. During this time period, Kal Zakath captured Belgarion and his companions during their hunt for Zandramas. He kept them in the city of Rak Hagga, trying to gauge the Rivan King's personality and weaknesses, but Garion was insistent about wanting to go to Mallorea to continue his search for his son. Kal Zakath still adamantly refused.

Eventually, Garion used the Orb of Aldur to persuade 'Zakath that Urgit was not, in fact, of the blood of Taur Urgas, and was actually half-Murgo on his mother's side and half-Drasnian on his father's. 'Zakath shortly after 'fell ill' to a cureless poison (thalot). Belgarath and Sadi saved him by growing Adara's rose, a flower Garion had created for his cousin, so he could inhale it's life-giving fumes. After a long discussion about theology, demons, a crisis back home, and the Prophecy, including a visit from Cyradis, the Dalasian Seeress who 'Zakath was peculiarly entranced with, he finally relented. He joined Belgarion and his companions and returned to Mallorea to take care of affairs there. After this, 'Zakath finally became friends with Garion, the Rivan King.

After a week or so in Mal Zeth, Kal Zakath's capital, Garion and the others began to pester him about leaving to continue their Quest, with or without the Mallorean emperor. Kal Zakath proved to be as stubborn as he had in Rak Hagga, insisting that they wait to go anywhere for three months, the time that Kal Zakath's army would take to return and amass in Mallorea. Belgarath knew that this would take far too long, so he told Sadi, Silk, Liselle/Velvet, and Garion to cook up a diversion so that they could escape. This diversion involved open warfare in the palace. Things, however, were complicated when Mal Zeth was infested with a deadly plague that killed almost half the population of the gigantic city. Belgarath and the others were led by Yarblek, Vella, and Feldegast through tunnels below the city to escape into Mallorea.

When Kal Zakath received this news, he was very "put out". He sent General Atesca, who had captured them back in Cthol Murgos, to fetch them again — something that he did a few months later. At this meeting, on the banks of the river Magan, Garion flatly refused to go back to Mal Zeth with Kal Zakath. He and Garion had an argument, before Cyradis interrupted them, ordering Kal Zakath to join the Quest and travel with Garion and the others to Kell. Kal Zakath put up a bit of a fight, but once he finally accepted his destiny, he described the feeling as being light and free for the first time in his life. He renewed his friendship with Garion during their travels and gradually became a more pleasant man than his imperial self.

'Zakath favors two weapons of choice: a gloved gauntlet, a cestus and the sabre.

At Kell, Cyradis gave him some instructions of his task, which he refused to talk about with Garion. Later, when the company traveled to Perivor, Kal Zakath, along with Garion, posed as Mimbrate knights to gain the trust of the island people. He suggested that he and Garion deliberately cheat to win a jousting tournament using Garion's gift of sorcery, so that the King of Perivor would grant them a boon — a look at the chart that would reveal the location of the Place Which Is No More. The strategy worked, but they were also required to fight the dragon plaguing the countryside of Dragon Perivor.

During the ultimate EVENT, Kal Zakath was considered a possible choice for the next Child of Light and possible new God of the Angaraks by Garion, but was Chosen against in the favor of Eriond. During the explosion of the Sardion, Garion said that he saw "others protecting their loved ones in the same way" as he was covering his wife Ce'Nedra and son Geran; later it was said that 'Zakath stood up from protecting Cyradis, implying that she was his loved one. This was one of many precursors to his love for the Seeress of Kell, also including a direct confrontation from Garion about his feelings for her.


'Zakath with Cyradis by Ashley Claypool

On Barak's boat Seabird, while the company was traveling back to Perivor after the EVENT and CHOICE, Garion and Hettar overheard him invite Cyradis to come to Mal Zeth with him and offer to be her "friend, guide, and protector" now that Toth was dead, basically declaring his love for her.

Cyrakath 1

Cyradis and 'Zakath by Maria Ochoa

In the epilogue to The Seeress of Kell, 'Zakath writes a letter to Garion and Ce'Nedra. In it, he reveals that the task of him and his descendants is to introduce Eriond, the new God of Angarak, to the other Angarak countries and the rest of the world. 'Zakath also mentions that he offers to worship Eriond, to which Eriond laughs. He also says that Eriond's first disciple, Pelath, had told him that the Seeress of Kell was growing concerned that he had not proposed marriage to her yet. Upon this revelation, 'Zakath says that he "offered a perfectly reasonable and normal marriage proposal" only to be turned down. Distraught, he continues to say that he "fell to his knees and poured out a very gushy, flowery proposal" on which Cyradis was "moved by [his] eloquence and accepted". He goes on to finish that "we were married last spring" and that he has "never been happier" in his life.

This is the last that we hear of 'Zakath, although it is strongly implied that he and Garion keep in touch.


Before his bereavement by Taur Urgas, 'Zakath was often described as "enlightened" and "open". Afterwards, he was often described as "cold-blooded" and "cruel". In truth, 'Zakath had a quiet and subdued manner. He forsook most adornment (indeed, Garion said that his rooms in Rak Hagga were "severely plain"), and had a strong fondness for cats. His only close companions in the years following his bereavement were a marmalade tabby cat and her kittens.

After he befriends Garion, he realizes the error of some of his ways and becomes an open person once again, so much that he even falls in love once more.

Silk mentioned that Zakath has some peculiar ideas about the aristocracy of talent (including having General Atesca) and that the Angarak officers didn't like the ideas, but they couldn't do much -- if they wanted to keep their heads.

Appearances In The Books[]

'Zakath first appeared in Enchanter's End Game. He was mentioned often in Guardians of the West and King of the Murgos, but made no actual appearances until Demon Lord of Karanda, Sorceress of Darshiva, and The Seeress of Kell.