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Civilization IV has seven religions: Buddhism, Christianity, Confucianism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, and Taoism. They all have the same effects, differing only in what technologies they require and the material needed to speed production of their Cathedral (see the table). Also, the later religions (Confucianism, Christianity, Taoism, and Islam) each get a free Missionary in their holy city.

Religion TableEdit

Required tech Cathedral Name Shrine 2×speed
Buddhism (Civ4) Buddhism
Meditation Stupa Mahabodhi Copper
Christianity (Civ4) Christianity
Theology Cathedral Church of the Nativity Stone
Confucianism (Civ4) Confucianism
Code of Laws Academy Kong Miao Copper
Hinduism (Civ4) Hinduism
Polytheism Mandir Kashi Vishwanath Marble
Islam (Civ4) Islam
Divine Right Mosque Masjid Al-Haram Marble
Judaism (Civ4) Judaism
Monotheism Synagogue Temple of Solomon Stone
Taoism (Civ4) Taoism
Philosophy Pagoda Dai Miao Copper

Founding of Religions and Holy CitiesEdit

The first civ to discover the tech listed in the table above will found the given religion in one of its cities. This city will then be the holy city of that religion, represented by a starred religious icon on the world view. The selection of the holy city from among all cities is partly random, but the algorithm will favor cites:

A holy city receives +5 Culture (Civ4) (instead of the standard +1 Culture (Civ4)). A Great Prophet may construct a Religious Shrine in a religion's holy city. If a holy city is razed, then the religion will continue to exist (provided that it has spread to other cities), but the holy city will be gone for the remainder of the game.

Spread of ReligionEdit

Religion can spread in two ways: via Missionaries, and automatically. Religions will only spread automatically to cities which do not have any religion present. Furthermore, automatic spread will happen only if there is trade access (not necessarily a trade route, but the potential for one) between the city and the holy city of some religion. Factors that increase the likelihood of automatic spread are low distance to the holy city, and the presence in the holy city of that religion's shrine.

Otherwise, spread of religion is done by way of Missionaries. Missionaries are units that civs may build in a city of a particular religion. The Missionary may then move to another city, and if its religion is not present there, attempt to spread its religion. The attempt to spread religion will automatically succeed if there is no religion present. For cities with one or more religions already present, there is a random chance that the Missionary will fail. This chance is about 9% per religion present for your own cities, or 12% for foreign cities:

#Religions already present 0 1 2 3 4 5 6
Chance of failure (own city) - 9% 18% 26% 35% 43% 52%
Chance of failure (other city) - 12% 24% 36% 48% 60% 72%

Effects of Religion in a CityEdit

When a city has a religion present, the following effects apply:

Effects of religious civics:

State ReligionEdit

When a civilization owns one or more cities containing any particular religion, the civ can choose to make that religion its state religion, which, like changing civics, will result in temporary anarchy for leaders who do not possess the Spiritual leader trait or the Cristo Redentor world wonder. Adopting a state religion gives +1 Happiness (Civ4) to all cities containing that religion and allows access to the effects of religious Civics.

Effects of State Religion in a City Edit

The following effects apply in each city with the state religion present in it:

  • +1 Happiness (Civ4)
  • +2 Happiness (Civ4) if city has a Cathedral of the state religion
  • +1 Culture (Civ4) (or +5 Culture (Civ4) for the holy city)

Effects of religious civics when state religion is present:

The following wonders concern state religions:

Other Effects of State ReligionEdit

A civ's state religion also has these effects that are not related to cities:

  • Better relations with AI opponents who have the same state religion
  • Worse relations with AI opponents who have differing state religions
  • A civ's state religion on the turn when it completes the Apostolic Palace determines the religion the Apostolic Palace is founded in

Other ReligionsEdit

  • In the Rise of Rome campaign, all empires have their respective pagan religions (Rome, Egypt, Greece, etc.).
  • The Omens campaign consists of a survival battle between the Protestants and the Catholics
  • Other campaigns include ancient Asian, Mesopotamian, and Mesoamerican pagan religions


Religion Monastery Temple Cathedral Shrine
Buddhism (Civ4) Buddhism
Buddhist Monastery (Civ4)

Buddhist Monastery

Buddhist Temple (Civ4)

Buddhist Temple

Buddhist Stupa (Civ4)

Buddhist Stupa

Mahabodhi (Civ4)


Christianity (Civ4) Christianity
Christian Monastery (Civ4)

Christian Monastery

Christian Temple (Civ4)

Christian Temple

Christian Cathedral (Civ4)

Christian Cathedral

Church of the Nativity (Civ4)

Church of the Nativity

Confucianism (Civ4) Confucianism
Confucian Monastery (Civ4)

Confucian Monastery

Confucian Temple (Civ4)

Confucian Temple

Confucian Academy (Civ4)

Confucian Academy

Kong Miao (Civ4)

Kong Miao

Hinduism (Civ4) Hinduism
Hindu Monastery (Civ4)

Hindu Monastery

Hindu Temple (Civ4)

Hindu Temple

Hindu Mandir (Civ4)

Hindu Mandir

Kashi Vishwanath (Civ4)

Kashi Vishwanath

Islam (Civ4) Islam
Islamic Monastery (Civ4)

Islamic Monastery

Islamic Temple (Civ4)

Islamic Temple

Islamic Mosque (Civ4)

Islamic Mosque

Masjid Al-Haram (Civ4)

Masjid Al-Haram

Judaism (Civ4) Judaism
Jewish Monastery (Civ4)

Jewish Monastery

Jewish Temple (Civ4)

Jewish Temple

Jewish Synagogue (Civ4)

Jewish Synagogue

Temple of Solomon (Civ4)

Temple of Solomon

Taoism (Civ4) Taoism
Taoist Monastery (Civ4)

Taoist Monastery

Taoist Temple (Civ4)

Taoist Temple

Taoist Pagoda (Civ4)

Taoist Pagoda

Dai Miao (Civ4)

Dai Miao

Further readingEdit

Civilization IV [edit]
WarlordsBeyond the SwordColonization

BuildingsCivicsCivilizationsErasLeaders (Traits) • ReligionsResourcesSoundtrackTechnologiesTerrains (Tile Improvement) • Units (ClassPromotions)• Wonders

Hammer (Civ4) ProductionBeaker (Civ4) ScienceCulture (Civ4) CultureBread (Civ4)FoodEspionage (Civ4) EspionagePower (Civ4) PowerHealth (Civ4) Health

† Total conversion remake of the game Sid Meier's Colonization using Civilization IV engine
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