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History of Myth Drannor

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The history of Myth Drannor is long and tumultuous, fraught with rises to power and falls to ruin.

Early HistoryEdit

Many believe that the city began as an elven encampment consisting of tree dwellings near some fresh water pools that gradually grew and incorporated rope bridges[1], though in truth the city was founded in -3983 DR by the Coronal Kahvoerm Irithyl as he summoned the Rule Tower with the elfblade, the Rulers' Blade.[2][3] The city was first called Cormanthor and became the capital of the newly created realm of Cormanthyr, after it united Semberholme, Elven Court and Jhyrennstar. The ritual of the blade was soon repeated with the Warblade and the Artblade, forming the three towers of Castle Cormanthor. For a century, this was the only grounded building in the city, as most dwellings were in the trees. It took 12 centuries before other towers broke the canopies of Cormanthor.[4]

For over four thousand years, the city prospers with little incident, passing into its sixth rysar in -223 DR.[5][6] The sixth Coronal, Eltargrim Irithyl, would forever change the city.

The OpeningEdit

At this time, orc invasions every decade or so became a large problem and the cause of great bloodshed. In addition, the Coronal began to foresee the doom of his people at the hands of the expanding empires of humans and other races at Cormanthyr's borders. He decided that if Cormanthyr was to survive, they must make peace with the other races, so Eltargrim set about organizing the elven wizards to create a mythal, a process that would take nearly twelve years to complete.[1] It was during this time that Elminster visited the legendary elven city and became the first human to ever set foot in it.[7] Elminster's presence was dogged by many nobles who opposed the Opening and he faced many attempts on his life, but was eventually found worthy by the Coronal. His role as Chosen of Mystra further emboldened the ruler of the elves to complete the mythal.[8]

It was completed in 261 DR,[7] and its construction marked the "Opening". The Coronal opened the city of Cormanthor to all non-elves, despite rebellion by the noble houses and attempts on his life, and the city was crowned Myth Drannor.[9] These noble houses were angered by this, and some (including the Starym, Bharaclaiev, Hyshaanth, Rhaevaern, and Tellynnan clans) relocated.[1][10] The rebellion was brought to the Court of Cormanthor by Lord Speaker Llombaerth Starym and many nobles lost their lives before the conflict was ended by the Coronal, the Srinshee and Elminster Aumar.[8]

The Golden AgeEdit

The Opening marked the begining of the Golden Age of Myth Drannor, when the city prospered and many races flourished amid its towers. In 273 DR Three dwalf clans from Ammarindar and Citadel Felbarr migrated together to Myth Drannor,[11][10] and in 284 DR, a great halfling migration from Meiritin and Tethyr arrived by way of newly opened portals.[9][12] In 292 DR, gnomes finally made their presence in the city.[9][12] The first half-elf was born to a noble house in 330 DR, a member of house Maerdrym, and even held his normal position among the clan.[12][13]

In 379 DR, seven powerful mages formed the first wizard school open to all races whose teachers were not exclusively elves, called the Seven Wizards of Myth Drannor outside the city.[14][15] Myth Drannor also suffered a violent attack in 398 DR when seven Chromatic dragons (five black and two green) assaulted the mythal. They were ultimately destroyed by Itham, commander of the dragonriders, though at the cost of his life and those of a bronze dragon, and fifty hippogriffs and their riders.[15][16]

The year 414 DR brought the birth of Khelben "Blackstaff" Arunsun, though he did not gain that name until later. Son of Arun Maerdrym and Arielimnda, a Harper, he followed the ancient elven custom of taking no name, so that he might earn his own name later in life. By 426 DR, he joined the Incanistaeum of the Seven Wizards of Myth Drannor to learn magic.[15][16] In 449 DR, the wizard left the city bearing the only name he knew: "Arun's Sun". He vowed to return to the clan and reclaim his place after earning a proper name.[15][17]

The city saw other events during this time, including the return of the Starym clan in 523 DR from Eaerlann and Illefarn, who reclaimed their family's holdings and attempted to restore the family's honour, though they fell deeper into darkness when Illitran Starym formed a pact with Moander.[18][19] The Guild of Naturalists formed in 561 DR, building a hall within two years.[20][21]

Myth Drannor reached a peak of power and culture in 661 DR, at which time it was producing exquisite pieces of jewelery, famous pieces of music and powerful magic. It earned a name as the City of Crowns because a great deal of magical crowns were produced here during this time. In particular, the Lharithlyn, Shraiee and Tlanbourn houses produced musical instruments of incredible quality.[7] No city could compare to Myth Drannor with its magic, culture, peace and prosperity. The many races of Toril were living together in unity, united among the many guilds in the city as well as the Armathors, the Akh'Faer and the Akh'Velahr. So great was it that a dozen other settlements became sister-cities to Myth Drannor, including Silverymoon, trying desperately to emulate the wonder of the City of Song.[22] This all changed when Eltargrim, contented with the completion of his dream, passed on to Arvandor.

The DuskEdit

Following the death of Eltargrim in 661 DR,[23][24] the city was left without a leader, as Aravae Irithyl, the sole heir, declared a five-year mourning period but was secretly murdered in 664 DR[24] by Illitran Starym[23], leaving the rulership of Cormanthyr open. After a lengthy Claiming Ceremony amid many conflicts, deaths and in-fighting, no heir was deemed worthy, and so the Srinshee drew the blade and departed to Arvandor with it, vowing only to return once the elves had remembered the lost dream of Cormanthyr.[23][25][26]

The ranking officials left in Myth Drannor, mainly the Arms-Major, the Spell-Major, and the two High Court Mages, convened with the tree spirits to discuss the future of the city and the realm. Their message was "if one star cannot guide you in your travel, look to them all for guidance". This was taken to mean a ruling council was needed, and by Midsummer 667 DR the Council of Twelve was in control of Cormanthyr and Myth Drannor.[27][23][26] This council soon forgot the dreams of the Coronals and took to bettering their own agendas; the nobles made trade deals that favoured their own houses and influence, and worked to set up power holds in the sister cities. With Myth Drannor failing as a capital, Cormanthyr dissolved into city states within four decades amid divisive in-fighting among the council and the guilds.[28]

Equally disastrous for Myth Drannor was the departure of the magical talent and artisan populations. Many of its great wizards left to colonize the sister cities, and after Eltargrim's passing fewer and fewer students enrolled in Myth Drannor's schools. In 682 DR, the Seven Wizards of Myth Drannor were disbanded.[29][30] Those that did come to the city were more interested in empowering themselves than learning about magic. Many Craftsman left for better opportunities in neighbouring settlements, as the craft guilds were prone to stagnation since its members, invigorated by the lifespan-increasing powers of the mythal, never left their posts.[31]

Finally, a descent into factionalism truly sundered the great unified force of Cormanthyr. The Akh'Velahr saw increased enrollment in the face of a looming civil war with the violent noble houses, and became a highly trained force under the council's direction. Mages from the High Court seceded and formed the Eternal Srinnala in 685 DR,[32][30] a female mage body dedicated to following the Srinshee's and the Coronal last wishes. Guilds were at odds and even taverns became exclusive to this race or that occupation. The priests of the various faiths of Myth Drannor banded together to protect their own district in the city against outside forces. Myth Drannor was breaking down year after year.[33]

Ruins of Myth Drannor - Jason A. Engle

Ruins of Myth Drannor, by Jason A. Engle

The FallEdit

Main article: Weeping War
708 DR 
The long-imprisoned trio of nycaloths are released from an extra-dimensional prison high above the city. This Trio Nefarious escaped to the North where they began raising the Army of Darkness.[32][34] Within 18 months they had amassed a great army of orcs, gnolls, trolls, goblins and other lesser demons and monsters, some 3,000 strong[35], intent on seeking revenge against the elves that had imprisoned them.[36]
711 DR 
The Trio Nefarious (Aulmpiter, Gaulguth and Malimshaer) entered the northern woods, attacking some elven outposts and moving closer to the capital, and starting the Weeping War.[37]
714 DR 
Myth Drannor is finally overrun by the Army of Darkness.[38] Despite fierce resistance from the elven defenders and the deaths of the three nycaloths, the demonic hordes were far too numerous to prevent the fall of the city. In an operation lasting almost a month, the city was set alight and pillaged, and the elves were almost all slain, leaving only two hundred survivors.[34][39][37]

The Interim YearsEdit

For over six centuries, the city's ruins were home to many lethal predators including alhoons, devils, dragons, the Cult of the Dark Naga and phaerimms. Parts of it were protected by baelnorns and it was frequented by adventuring parties and raiders looking for treasure and magic.[40] The elves kept the place hidden and sealed for the most part, and the city became a legend, one of the most dangerous adventuring sites in all of Faerûn. It remained as such for many years, even through the Retreat when the elves abandoned Cormanthor and left the city to its own fate.[41] Little else is known about the goings on in the city during this time.

RecaptureEdit

In 1374 DR, the army of Seiveril Miritar, leading a return to Faerûn, recaptured Myth Drannor and its new Coronal, Ilsevele Miritar, began restoring the city to its former glory. As of 1479 DR, the city occupied a smaller area than it once did, and some parts of the ruins of the older city were still present, the forest having regrown to cover them. Myth Drannor's mythal was repaired and was active in 1479 DR, preventing access to the city from other planes.[42]

The Sundering Edit

In 1487 DR, after years of war against Netheril, Thultanthar fell upon Myth Drannor, destroying both cities. Ilsevele and her surviving subjects fled to Semberholme.[43]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Ed Greenwood (1993). Ruins of Myth Drannor: Campaign Guide. (TSR, Inc), p. 4. ISBN 1-5607-6569-0.
  2. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 27. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  3. Steven E. Schend and Kevin Melka (1998). Cormanthyr: Empire of the Elves. (TSR, Inc), p. 33. ISBN 0-7069-0761-4.
  4. Steven E. Schend and Kevin Melka (1998). Cormanthyr: Empire of the Elves. (TSR, Inc), p. 55. ISBN 0-7069-0761-4.
  5. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 53. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  6. Steven E. Schend and Kevin Melka (1998). Cormanthyr: Empire of the Elves. (TSR, Inc), p. 35. ISBN 0-7069-0761-4.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Ed Greenwood (1993). Ruins of Myth Drannor: Campaign Guide. (TSR, Inc), p. 5. ISBN 1-5607-6569-0.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Steven E. Schend and Kevin Melka (1998). Cormanthyr: Empire of the Elves. (TSR, Inc), p. 56. ISBN 0-7069-0761-4.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 68. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  10. 10.0 10.1 Steven E. Schend and Kevin Melka (1998). Cormanthyr: Empire of the Elves. (TSR, Inc), p. 37. ISBN 0-7069-0761-4.
  11. Richard Baker, Ed Bonny, Travis Stout (February 2005). Lost Empires of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 84. ISBN 0-7869-3654-1.
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 Steven E. Schend and Kevin Melka (1998). Cormanthyr: Empire of the Elves. (TSR, Inc), p. 38. ISBN 0-7069-0761-4.
  13. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 71. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  14. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 72. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 Steven E. Schend and Kevin Melka (1998). Cormanthyr: Empire of the Elves. (TSR, Inc), p. 39. ISBN 0-7069-0761-4.
  16. 16.0 16.1 Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 73. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  17. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 87. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  18. Steven E. Schend and Kevin Melka (1998). Cormanthyr: Empire of the Elves. (TSR, Inc), p. 40. ISBN 0-7069-0761-4.
  19. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 90. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  20. Steven E. Schend and Kevin Melka (1998). Cormanthyr: Empire of the Elves. (TSR, Inc), p. 41. ISBN 0-7069-0761-4.
  21. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 91. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  22. Steven E. Schend (1998). The Fall of Myth Drannor. (TSR, Inc), p. 3. ISBN 0-7869-1235-9.
  23. 23.0 23.1 23.2 23.3 Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 94. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  24. 24.0 24.1 Steven E. Schend (1998). The Fall of Myth Drannor. (TSR, Inc), p. 4. ISBN 0-7869-1235-9.
  25. Steven E. Schend (1998). The Fall of Myth Drannor. (TSR, Inc), p. 6. ISBN 0-7869-1235-9.
  26. 26.0 26.1 Steven E. Schend (1998). The Fall of Myth Drannor. (TSR, Inc), p. 17. ISBN 0-7869-1235-9.
  27. Steven E. Schend (1998). The Fall of Myth Drannor. (TSR, Inc), p. 7. ISBN 0-7869-1235-9.
  28. Steven E. Schend (1998). The Fall of Myth Drannor. (TSR, Inc), pp. 7–8. ISBN 0-7869-1235-9.
  29. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 96. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  30. 30.0 30.1 Steven E. Schend (1998). The Fall of Myth Drannor. (TSR, Inc), p. 18. ISBN 0-7869-1235-9.
  31. Steven E. Schend (1998). The Fall of Myth Drannor. (TSR, Inc), p. 8. ISBN 0-7869-1235-9.
  32. 32.0 32.1 Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 97. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  33. Steven E. Schend (1998). The Fall of Myth Drannor. (TSR, Inc), pp. 10–11. ISBN 0-7869-1235-9.
  34. 34.0 34.1 Steven E. Schend (1998). The Fall of Myth Drannor. (TSR, Inc), p. 19. ISBN 0-7869-1235-9.
  35. Steven E. Schend (1998). The Fall of Myth Drannor. (TSR, Inc), p. 14. ISBN 0-7869-1235-9.
  36. Steven E. Schend (1998). The Fall of Myth Drannor. (TSR, Inc), p. 13. ISBN 0-7869-1235-9.
  37. 37.0 37.1 Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 99. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  38. Richard Baker (August 2004). Forsaken House. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 1–2. ISBN 0-7869-3260-0.
  39. Ed Greenwood (1993). Ruins of Myth Drannor: Campaign Guide. (TSR, Inc), pp. 6–7. ISBN 1-5607-6569-0.
  40. Richard Baker, Ed Bonny, Travis Stout (February 2005). Lost Empires of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 133. ISBN 0-7869-3654-1.
  41. Ed Greenwood (1993). Ruins of Myth Drannor: Campaign Guide. (TSR, Inc), p. 8. ISBN 1-5607-6569-0.
  42. Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 156. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
  43. Ed Greenwood (June 2014). The Herald. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 351–352. ISBN 978-0786964604.

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