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Midwinter (also known as Deadwinter Day) was a festival to mark the midpoint of winter in the Calendar of Harptos. It occured on a special day between Hammer 30 and Alturiak 1. Amongst nobles and monarchs it was known as Midwinter and was traditionally used to make or renew alliances, although the common people called it Deadwinter Day, a reference to the cold and hard times that remained before the spring.[1][2]

On Midwinter Day the Red Fellowship of the Deity known as the Red Knight observes the Retreat. This solemn ceremony consists of an assembly wherein the clergy discuss the previous year's campaigns. Strategies are discussed, battles analyzed, and the accumulated lore integrated into the church's teachings.[3][4]

The holiest day of the year for the Church of Shevarash is Midwinter Night, during which the Dark Court Slaughter is remembered. Inductions into the ranks of the clergy occur at this time. Each new cleric screams vows of vengeance into the night air and swears neither to laugh nor smile until the Spider Queen and her followers are no more.[5][6]

On This DayEdit

  • Worshipers of Auril hold a festival of ice-dancing on Midwinter Night.[7][8]
  • Worshipers of Berronar Truesilver mark this day with chanted prayers, speeches, reports on the workings of the church, and an underground festival.[9][10]
  • Worshipers of the svirfneblin deity Callarduran Smoothhands celebrate the Festival of the Star at midnight when special phosphorescent fungi reflect like stars off of subterranean waters.[11][12]
  • To the worshipers of Gargauth, Midwinter Night is the Unveiling, said to be observed with many grisly sacrifices.[13][14]
  • Guardians of Gorm Gulthyn gather for ritual salutes, martial weapons displays, chanted prayers, and the offering of weapons used in a defensive action.[15]
  • Worshipers of Grumbar hold a festival and set plans for the next year.[16][17]
  • Worshipers of Laduguer observe Grimtidings by stopping work and listening to priests recounting tales of duergar suffering.[18]
  • Worshipers of Lliira open a holy festival with the Swords Cast Down ritual in which weapons are thrown on the ground with chanting and covered with fresh flowers (conjured by hired druids or wizards or by senior clergy).[19][20]
  • Worshipers of Loviatar celebrate the Rite of Pain and Purity by dancing in a circle upon broken glass or other sharp objects.[21][22]
  • Followers of Marthammor Duin call this day the Rooting and celebrate their renewed ties to the mountains.[23]
  • Worshipers of the Red Knight observe the Retreat to review campaigns, discuss strategies, and codify lore.[3][4]
  • Worshipers of Shevarash observe Midwinter Night in memory of the Dark Court Slaughter in which new members swear not to smile or laugh until the Spider Queen and other dark drow gods and their followers are destroyed.[5][6]
  • Worshipers of Shiallia invite friendly creatures to join in feasting, dancing, and singing.[24][25]
  • Priests of Osiris resanctify all burial crypts in Mulhorand.[26][27]
  • Worshipers of Talos call for storms and lightning.[28][29]
  • Worshipers of the gnomish god Urdlen appease their god with sacrifices in deep caverns on the Night of Blood.[30][31]
  • Midwinter Night is known as the Masked Lord's Embrace to followers of the drow deity Vhaeraun, who perform rituals of total sensory deprivation.[32][33]
  • In –4400 DR, the Elven Court and the dwarven town of Sarphil were devastated by attacking drow and duergar forces during the Midwinter Night feast celebrating their alliance.[34] Most of the elvish and dwarven clan leaders were slain in what became known as the Dark Court Slaughter.[35]
  • In 450 DR, Prince Strohm of Tethyr killed Qysar Amahl Shoon VII, ending the Shoon Imperium.[36]
  • In 1372 DR, Bane the Black Hand regained his divinity after being reborn out of Iyachtu Xvim like a moth from a cocoon on Midwinter Night. He took back the portfolio of fear and was elevated to a greater deity.[37]

AppendixEdit

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 77. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  2. Jeff Grubb, Ed Greenwood and Karen S. Martin (1987). Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (Cyclopedia of the Realms). (TSR, Inc), p. 6. ISBN 0-8803-8472-7.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Eric L. Boyd (1997). Powers and Pantheons. (TSR, Inc), p. 45. ISBN 0-7869-0657-X.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 104. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Eric L. Boyd (1998). Demihuman Deities. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 131. ISBN 0-7869-1239-1.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 131. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  7. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc), p. 31. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  8. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 91. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  9. Eric L. Boyd (1998). Demihuman Deities. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 48. ISBN 0-7869-1239-1.
  10. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 116. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  11. Eric L. Boyd (1998). Demihuman Deities. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 145. ISBN 0-7869-1239-1.
  12. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 134. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  13. Eric L. Boyd (1997). Powers and Pantheons. (TSR, Inc), p. 24. ISBN 0-7869-0657-X.
  14. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 95–96. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  15. Eric L. Boyd (1998). Demihuman Deities. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 65. ISBN 0-7869-1239-1.
  16. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc), p. 67. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  17. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 96. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  18. Eric L. Boyd (1998). Demihuman Deities. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 73. ISBN 0-7869-1239-1.
  19. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc), p. 99. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  20. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 99. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  21. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc), p. 102. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  22. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 100. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  23. Eric L. Boyd (1998). Demihuman Deities. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 76. ISBN 0-7869-1239-1.
  24. Eric L. Boyd (1997). Powers and Pantheons. (TSR, Inc), p. 56. ISBN 0-7869-0657-X.
  25. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 105. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  26. Eric L. Boyd (1997). Powers and Pantheons. (TSR, Inc), p. 122. ISBN 0-7869-0657-X.
  27. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 146. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  28. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc), p. 157. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  29. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 68. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  30. Eric L. Boyd (1998). Demihuman Deities. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 159. ISBN 0-7869-1239-1.
  31. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 137. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  32. Eric L. Boyd (1998). Demihuman Deities. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 38. ISBN 0-7869-1239-1.
  33. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 114. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  34. Steven E. Schend and Kevin Melka (1998). Cormanthyr: Empire of the Elves. (TSR, Inc), p. 26. ISBN 0-7069-0761-4.
  35. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 26. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  36. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 88. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  37. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 152. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.

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