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This article is about an older version of DF.
Materials Workshops Labors

Slabs are buildings which can serve as an alternative to a coffin in the event that a dwarf's body cannot be retrieved, thus preventing the dwarf from haunting the fortress as a ghost. Slabs must be constructed at a mason's workshop (Alt+slab) and require one stone.

Slabs can also be built solely for decoration purposes, to increase a fortress's or room's value. They can be considerably more useful for this than statues, since poor layout decisions will not trap dwarves.

In order to dedicate a slab to a particular dwarf, a slab must be carved into a memorial at a craftsdwarf's workshop by an Engraver (using Alt+s:Engrave memorial slab). The engraver will retrieve the slab and engrave it. After it has been engraved, the slab may be built from the building menu under Alt+s. In order to prevent placing slabs which have not yet been engraved, make sure to expand the list when selecting which slab should be placed.

You can create a sculpture garden from a slab's query menu. Unlike statues, slabs do not block movement.

An engraved slab can be read in fortress mode using tEnterv and contains information on the arrival and death of the creature. If it slew any important figures or fortress dwarves, it may be noted on the slab as well.

If you're not sure how a dwarf or creature died, engraving and placing a slab may reveal it. In the case of military action, the killer is listed at the end of the entry. If, for example, a drawbrige atom smasher squashed your dwarf, that will be the engraved folly.

Adventurer mode[edit]

In adventurer mode, slabs may be used as signs, or be engraved with the secrets of life and death in necromancer towers, guarded by an undead army. To read them, you need to pick them up with g, enter advanced interaction menu with Shift+I, select the slab, select a to read it and voila! You can raise the dead too. Basic reading skills are required to do this, so make sure to start your adventurer with some reading skill.