Examples of Black Canary and Thea Queen show us that Lazarus Pit can revive peole from dead without rendering them insane.

Could please someone explain why Oliver or anybody from the Team Arrow does not consider a Pit as one of the most important things in the world?

Coping with criminals is cool for sure, but aging and diseases kill people more effectively then supervillains, so it sounds like a good idea to tell the world about it or at least take some samples to give it to their friends in StarLabs.

I'd understand if they thought that reviving people is a bad idea, but they clearly use it to bring back their relatives without much hesitation.

Is there any explanation for this?

  • Fixed that for you. SFF likes questions in the third person, and yes that was a pretty big spoiler.
    – user40790
    Mar 9, 2016 at 23:36

2 Answers 2


The Pit has various side effects that would make it unsuitable for repeated use.

First, the powers become less effective over time. Ra's mentioned this side effect to Oliver in Season 3's The Offer:

As I told you on the mountain, boy, man can only evade death for so long. The waters' powers are losing their effect on me. My time is almost over, but my legacy won't be just ash and bone, it will be history.

Second, the Pit causes a bloodlust - particularly against the person that killed the user. If that lust can't be quenched, then it will start to consume the user. Malcolm mentions this to Thea in Season 4's Restoration

The Pit contains traces of the souls of all the men and women who have bathed in its waters. And what those waters restore, they can also take. Life for life.

Thea has been struggling all season with this side effect, to the point of near death because she refused to kill.

Third, Sara was dead so long that they had to literally journey to Hell to recover her soul. Before this was done, she was a feral shell. Even after this restoration, she experiences moments of bloodlust that she's had to be talked down from.

Finally, the Pit can't be used any more. Nyssa poisoned at the end of "Restoration" in retaliation for Malcolm Merlin's assistance in restoring Sara Lance. This was a fate that she told Laurel:

I wouldn't wish it on my most bitter enemy, let alone my beloved.

As of right now, this is the only known Lazarus Pit. Only Damien Darhk is known to have any other water from this pit. Ra's mentioned this to Oliver in Season 3's Al Sah-Him when explaining the League's feud with HIVE:

When I joined the League, I was conscripted with another man. Damien Darhk. We would become the prized agents of Ra's al Ghul. We were his horsemen. And he molded us into warriors the likes the world had never seen. We were as brothers. What happened to him? He believed himself worthy of becoming heir to the Demon, but I was the one chosen. So you had to kill him. Yes. But you see, I hesitated. And with that hesitation, he found an opportunity to escape, taking with him his loyalists and water from the Lazarus pit. And he has vexed me ever since.


Until very recently, the existence of Lazarus Pits was a closely-guarded secret, and the only one we know of was controlled by the League of Assassins. They considered it's use to be a privilege reserved for Ra's al'Ghul, or those to whom he chose to grant favors.

Even in that case, Ra's only used the Pit to extend his life, not to restore himself from death. Despite what we've seen, it's extremely rare for someone to come back from the pit intact. Ra's and Nyssa both seemed to think it was impossible: they seemed to assume that blood lust would be permanent. That either of the two cases we've seen turned out better is due to extremely special circumstances:

  • One required an extremely powerful magician to perform a potentially deadly spell, that even he wasn't sure would work. And, based on her comments in Legend of Tomorrow, it's not even clear that she's entirely free from the Pit's influence.
  • The other required an even harder to find elixir that was itself a well-kept, heavily guarded secret, and it's not clear if there is any more left.

And, of course, the question is now moot since the only Pit we know of has been destroyed, so there's nothing left to study.

(I believe Nyssa's father, the former-former Ra's, implied that there were others but we have no idea if that's true, or where they are.)

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