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The Old Master stands trial before the Daleks. (TV: Doctor Who)

The Act of Master Restitution (PROSE: Meet the Doctor, A Brief History of Time Lords) was to be the founding stone of peace negotiations entered between the Time Lords and the Daleks near the end of the Seventh Doctor's life, under the leadership of President Romanadvoratrelundar. (PROSE: Lungbarrow)



Signifying the opening of a Dalek embassy on Gallifrey, the Act of Master Restitution saw the Doctor being sent to Skaro to pick up the ashes of the Old Master, (PROSE: Lungbarrow) who, in his "last incarnation", had been formally tried (TV: Doctor Who) by the Dalek Prelature (AUDIO: Mastermind) and executed by them. The Master had been allowed to formulate his last will and testament, which named the Doctor as the one to pick up the ashes; (TV: Doctor Who) the part of Romana's agreement was to compel the Daleks to see these conditions respected, with the Doctor allowed safe travel to and from Skaro. (PROSE: Lungbarrow)

According to another account entirely, however, Gallifrey was not involved in this arrangement: the Master communicated his last will and testament to the Doctor via a telepathic message and the Doctor had to sneak in and out of the Dalek City unnoticed to pick up his ashes. (PROSE: The Novel of the Film) At any rate, the "bring the ashes back to Gallifrey" part of the bargain was never fulfilled, as the Master had schemes of his own, and, pulling himself together in the form of a Deathworm Morphant, set about using the Eye of Harmony inside the Doctor's TARDIS to steal his body and return to life. (TV: Doctor Who)

Political implications[]

The political move caused much controversy among the Time Lords, who were aghast not only at the very idea, but also at the fact that Romana had opened these negotiations on her own and was only promising to give the High Council a report on her actions "in due time". (PROSE: Lungbarrow)

Though the Great Houses dared not, at that time, dare to consider the prospect of a War of any sort, (PROSE: The Book of the War) the truth was that the Act of Master Restitution and accompanying peace negotiations were, to those in the know, a last-ditch attempt to ease rising tensions between Gallifrey and the Dalek Empire in an effort to avoid a full-blown conflict. (PROSE: Meet the Doctor) Following the Etra Prime incident, these negotiations failed and War became inevitable. (PROSE: A Brief History of Time Lords, Meet the Doctor)


The Act of Master Restitution was remembered shortly after the Time War's close as the only[statement unclear][source needed]

Behind the scenes[]

The Imperial Daleks execute the Master. (NOTVALID: Dalek Execution)

  • Dalek Execution, an entry in the Flashbacks series of illustration, featured a new image of the Old Master's execution at the start of the TV Movie which showed the executing Daleks in full view, showing them to be Imperial Daleks in gold-and-white livery. However, being illustrations with some clarifying caption text rather than stories in their own right, entries in the Flashbacks series are not considered valid sources, and so there is no confirmation of the faction of Daleks with whom the Act of Master Restitution was passed, though The Novel of the Film (which disregards the notion of any Time Lord agreement having been connected to the Master's execution) notes that the Master's trial and execution were conducted in the presence of "the Emperor".