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Monastery of the Yellow Rose

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The Monastery of the Yellow Rose, also known as the Citadel of the White Worm, was a monastery dedicated to St. Sollars the Twice-Martyred and Ilmater, the Broken God. It was situated high in the Earthspur Mountains in Damara, overlooking the Glacier of the White Worm. It was the most well known of the facilities belonging to the Disciples of St. Sollars the Twice-Martyred.[6][2][7][8][9][1]

GeographyEdit

The Monastery was a difficult place to reach, as the trails leading there were hard to find and follow.[2] Furthermore, it was an arduous climb up a mountain pass to reach the entrance.[10] It was a very solitary and remote place. [9][10]

Located high in the Earthspur Mountains, the monastery lay east of the Glacier of the White Worm.[1] Overlooking the glacier, it was built into the rocky side of a jagged mountain peak, one of the tallest in the Earthspurs,[2][1] and upon a high plateau.[11]

StructureEdit

The Citadel of the White Worm was an immense and sprawling fortress. From the outside, it projected many turrets, balconies, and windows.[6][2][1] The top of the highest structure was a crenulated tower.[12] There were also extensive tunnels into the mountain below.[2][1] Every generation of monks built on new structures and dug out new subterranean chambers and tunnels.[2]

InteriorEdit

Inside, every room displayed the artwork and architecture of the monks of the Yellow Rose, reflecting their great discipline. The monastery resembled an impressive museum devoted to the persistence, indomitability, and rise of human-kind in Faerûn.[2]

However, being built into the side of a mountain, only about half the rooms had windows looking onto the daylight. The remainder were underground, within the mountain itself.[2]

A lengthy network of catacombs ran under the monastery and through the mountain. There were three main sections. One wing held a vast cellar where the monks stored vats of blueberry wine. Another housed their archives and records about the Bloodstone Lands, the most complete collection anywhere in the Realms. Finally, the catacombs served as burial vaults, holding the remains of deceased monks.[2]

The monastery contained a private prayer room for masters that included a table on a stage, where the masters sat for audiences.[13]

By 1479 DR, there was a major portal in the monastery that allowed passage from the far-distant Underdark town of Earth's End.[14]

ActivitiesEdit

At the Monastery of the Yellow Rose, the monks dedicated themselves to venerating the Suffering God, Ilmater.[1] This seemed to be primarily through the hard work necessary to survive in the harsh environment around the monastery, and here they thrived.[9][10] The monks toiled for at least sixteen hours a day, without fail.[2]

Initiates and low-ranking monks were most responsible for the basic necessities of life in the high mountains. They worked in the small gardens, they cut and hauled blocks of ice that would be melted for water, and they foraged in the desolate mountains for supplies.[2] The monks also created blueberry wine from blueberries they collected.[1][2]

Their efforts gave their superiors the time and capacity to focus on less vital but more spiritual work. Those with the skill focused on crafting sculptures and tapestries.[2] They kept a grand museum of artwork themed around Ilmater, preserving the art, architecture, and handiworks of his faithful in a tribute to their faith and discipline.[1][2]

The monks also dedicated their time to genealogical studies[7] At the Monastery, they maintained vast archives about the Bloodstone Lands, the most complete anywhere in the Realms. Once a year, the mid-ranking monks led expeditions out of the mountains and into the cities of the Bloodstone Lands: Damara, Vaasa, Impiltur, and Narfell. There they gathered and recorded local news, familiarized themselves with travelers passing through and with newcomers settling in the area, and listed births and deaths. [1][2] These included genealogies, and some monks specialized in genealogical studies.[7][8] As a result, they were used to dealing with delicate matters of heritage among the nobility.[6] They sometimes served as emissaries within the Bloodstone Lands.[2]

One other task the monks had was to construct and maintain the Watcher's Mounds that lay throughout the Earthspur Mountains south of the Monastery. Well over a hundred of these campsites were situated along the trails running down from the monastery. Not only mounds, there were defensible campsites with shelter where a traveler, a ranger, or a Watcher might spend a night in safety. Each site also contained a hidden cache of preserved food, water, and tools. The monks and local rangers restocked these caches, and took note of when they were wantonly looted and who was responsible, as well as who was considerate enough to leave spare supplies behind.[15]

InhabitantsEdit

The monks of the Monastery of the Yellow Rose were Disciples of St. Sollars the Twice-Martyred, also called the Order of the Yellow Rose. The monastery was their most famous facility.[6][2][7][8][9][1] The Monastery accommodated up to 750 monks.[6]

The Monastery seldom had visitors, and few came purely for sightseeing, owing to its remoteness and inaccessibility. But those who did come found the journey worth their while and the experience rewarding.[2] For the same reason, orphans were rarely left at the gates as at other monasteries. Instead, every few years, the monks went out into the neighboring lands of Damara and Vaasa and chose a young orphan to join them.[10]

RelationsEdit

The monks were renowned for the loyalty they showed to their allies, such as the Order of the Golden Cup, with whom they often traveled. They were greatly respected in diplomatic matters and on issues of truth,[6][9] for their inner strength,[2] and as dangerous enemies.[9]

The Disciples of St. Sollars were greatly respected wherever they journeyed, even by the Nars of Narfell.[6] They maintained friendly and supportive relations with nearby communities in Damara and Vaasa, and they were especially respected there.[10] Even those who opposed the Monastery of the Yellow Rose and its works would not dare move openly against them.[6]

The Knights of Imphras II of Impiltur, who were backed by the church of Ilmater, had in the past fought alongside the Disciples of St. Sollars.[16] The Lords of Imphras II, a ruling council of Impiltur in 1359 DR, had respected the Disciples for a long time.[2]

HistoryEdit

The Disciples of St. Sollars the Twice-Martyred crossed over the Great Glacier, over the lands that would later be known as Damara and Vaasa, whilst both realms still lay beneath the ice.[2] A fanatical order, they sought the most imposing, harsh, and dangerous place at which to build their temple, and found it in the highest peaks of the Earthspurs.[2][17] The Monastery of the Yellow Rose, also known as the Citadel of the White Worm, was founded in the Year of the Yellow Rose, 1242 DR.[2][3][4][5] [note 1]

In the Year of the Serpent, 1359 DR, Grand Master Poke died suddenly. This necessitated that Kane, a Master of Spring and next-in-line for the position of Grand Master, hurry back to the monastery and manage affairs until a new Grand Master could be trained and selected.[18][19] However, Kane declined to hold the position for any length of time. After Kane, the next in line was a man named Temmenische, who was 95 years old, so he was hardly a practical choice. Although Cantoule was not in line for the position of Grand Master of Flowers, was not an obvious choice, and, aged about 40, was considered rather too young, Kane and Temmenische decided he would be the most suitable successor. Thus, Cantoule was pressed into the position of Grand Master of Flowers, and Kane and Temmenische put Cantoule through accelerated training in advanced techniques to prepare him for the post. As Grand Master, Cantoule continued his lessons while managing the Monastery of the Yellow Rose, a task for which he appeared quite capable. Since he took over in 1359 DR, the monastery enjoyed peaceful times and affairs proceeded smoothly with well-worn tradition.[18]

However, Cantoule first had to decide which of the would-be kings of Damara the monastery should throw its support behind. Cantoule appeared to favor the heroic Gareth Dragonsbane, an adventuring companion of Kane.[18] This would greatly strengthen Gareth's case. Thus Gareth invited Grand Master Cantoule to visit him in Bloodstone Village.[18] The Monastery also sent a number of its monks to Gareth Dragonsbane, lord of Damara, so that they could serve as his emissaries to the Lords of Imphras II of Impiltur. This was thanks to the esteem the Lords had for the Yellow Rose, and Gareth's close relationship with the Monastery via his companion Kane.[20]

Later in 1359 DR, Duke Helmont the 15th of Carmathan in Damara claimed royal lineage, but an old women purporting to be midwife to the House of Devlin had no recollection of his birth and doubted his claims. Thus, Gareth Dragonsbane invited the Monks of the Yellow Rose to investigate the matter. Although the monastery possessed complete genealogical records, they sent a contingent of monks to Carmathan to investigate directly and fairly. With the monks so highly respected, Helmont had no option but to cooperate. Preliminary reports suggested the monks had apparently found evidence supporting the midwife's version of events.[21][6]

Gareth became king later in 1359 DR.[22]

In the Year of Rogue Dragons, 1373 DR, on Mirtul 25, the monastery was besieged by a flight of maddened chromatic dragons sent by Sammaster to prevent anyone from finding lore pertaining to the Rage of Dragons sweeping across Faerûn at the time. The hunters Dorn Graybrook and Raryn Snowstealer, the copper dragon Chatulio, and the song dragon Kara aided the monks in defending the monastery. The siege lasted for several days, before metallic dragons departed their refuge in the Galena Mountains and routed the chromatic dragons on Flamerule 11. The monastery community was nearly destroyed in the battle.[23][24][25]

In 1484 DR, the monastery hosted Ambergris while her friend Afafrenfere sought to be accepted once more as a monk after leaving the order. The masters, led by Grandmaster Kane, agreed that Afafrenfere could return to the order if he joined Ambergris and Jarlaxle in their affairs in the Silver Marches.[26]

Notable inhabitantsEdit

AppendixEdit

NotesEdit

  1. The history of the Monastery at this point is unclear. The Bloodstone Lands states that the monks "established the monastery more than a thousand years ago", which would be some time before 359 DR. However, several later sources (the campaign settings for 2nd and 3rd edition, and The Grand History of the Realms) specify the much later date of 1242 DR, only 117 years before. They also state that the Great Glacier retreated and Damara and Vaasa were freed of ice in 1038 DR, which leaves at least two centuries to a thousand years for the monks to be without a base. Thus, it is possible that they had constructed some other facility—perhaps a temple—that was later established as a monastery. This is supported by The Bloodstone Lands saying that the monks sought a "place to locate their temple", not a monastery. It is also possible that the Citadel of the White Worm (a distinctly un-Ilmatari-sounding name) was an earlier structure occupied by the monks and eventually refurbished and renamed the Monastery of the Yellow Rose. This is supported by it being described as a massive fortress with catacombs of great age.

AppearancesEdit

Novels

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 107. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 2.19 2.20 2.21 2.22 2.23 R.A. Salvatore (1989). The Bloodstone Lands. (TSR, Inc), p. 41. ISBN 0-88038-771-8.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Ed Greenwood, Julia Martin, Jeff Grubb (1993). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 2nd edition (revised), Running the Realms. (TSR, Inc), p. 16. ISBN 1-5607-6617-4.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 270. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 126. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 6.7 6.8 R.A. Salvatore (1989). The Bloodstone Lands. (TSR, Inc), p. 25. ISBN 0-88038-771-8.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc), p. 77. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 31. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 9.5 Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 25. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 Thomas M. Reid, Sean K. Reynolds (Nov. 2005). Champions of Valor. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 24–25. ISBN 0-7869-3697-5.
  11. R.A. Salvatore (September 2014). Rise of the King. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 198. ISBN 0-7869-6515-0.
  12. R.A. Salvatore (September 2014). Rise of the King. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 177. ISBN 0-7869-6515-0.
  13. 13.0 13.1 R.A. Salvatore (September 2014). Rise of the King. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 283. ISBN 0-7869-6515-0.
  14. Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 226. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
  15. R.A. Salvatore (1989). The Bloodstone Lands. (TSR, Inc), p. 44. ISBN 0-88038-771-8.
  16. Thomas M. Reid, Sean K. Reynolds (Nov. 2005). Champions of Valor. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 92. ISBN 0-7869-3697-5.
  17. R.A. Salvatore (1989). The Bloodstone Lands. (TSR, Inc), p. 32. ISBN 0-88038-771-8.
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 18.3 R.A. Salvatore (1989). The Bloodstone Lands. (TSR, Inc), p. 46. ISBN 0-88038-771-8.
  19. R.A. Salvatore (1989). The Bloodstone Lands. (TSR, Inc), p. 50. ISBN 0-88038-771-8.
  20. R.A. Salvatore (1989). The Bloodstone Lands. (TSR, Inc), p. 16. ISBN 0-88038-771-8.
  21. R.A. Salvatore (1989). The Bloodstone Lands. (TSR, Inc), p. 11. ISBN 0-88038-771-8.
  22. Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 271. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  23. Warning: edition not specified for The Rite
  24. Eric L. Boyd, Eytan Bernstein (August 2006). Dragons of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 10. ISBN 0-7869-3923-0.
  25. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 154. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  26. 26.0 26.1 R.A. Salvatore (September 2014). Rise of the King. (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-6515-0.
  27. R.A. Salvatore (1989). The Bloodstone Lands. (TSR, Inc), p. 45. ISBN 0-88038-771-8.
  28. R.A. Salvatore (1989). The Bloodstone Lands. (TSR, Inc), pp. 5–6. ISBN 0-88038-771-8.
  29. 29.0 29.1 R.A. Salvatore (September 2014). Rise of the King. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 284. ISBN 0-7869-6515-0.
  30. R.A. Salvatore (September 2014). Rise of the King. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 199. ISBN 0-7869-6515-0.

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