The sphere of annihilation appeared in first edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons in the original 1979 Dungeon Master's Guide. It also appeared in second edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons in the 2nd edition Dungeon Master's Guide (1989).
The sphere of annihilation appeared in the third edition Dungeon Master's Guide (2000), classified as a minor artifact.
A sphere of annihilation is a two-foot diameter black globe of absolute nothingness. A sphere of annihilation is actually a void - a hole in the continuity of the multiverse - and any matter which comes in contact with a sphere is instantly sucked into the void and utterly destroyed. Characters annihilated this way cannot be restored by any mortal magic.
A sphere of annihilation remains static, remaining in place as if it were a normal hole. A character can cause it to move through mental effort, as if by telekinesis; the more powerful a character is, the better that character can control and move the sphere of annihilation. Failure to establish control over a sphere of annihilation causes it to briefly move towards the character attempting to do so. If two or more characters attempt to control a sphere of annihilation, their attempts oppose each other. Another magic item called the talisman of the sphere allows a character to better control this item.