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Siluvanede was a realm of Ar-tel-quessirsun elves or gold elves—lying in the northwestern High Forest, from circa −8400 DR to its fall in 882 DR. It aspired to the heights of Aryvandaar before it, but also repeated its crimes, falling prey to arrogance and ambition, dark magic and the demonic taint of the fey'ri. Once an independent realm, it lost the Seven Citadels' War and became a vassal of Eaerlann.[15][16][17][5][1]

HistoryEdit

The Founding TimeEdit

Following the end of the Fifth Crown War and the fall of the elf realm of Aryvandaar circa −9000 DR, the elves abandoned the High Forest for some six centuries.[5] However, in time, a few sun elves returned to the northwestern reaches of the High Forest and the ruins of Aryvandaar.[16][5] At the time, most migrating elves were looking for a new homeland that pure elven, away from the expanding humans, dwarves, and other races, while others looked to distance themselves from the aftermath of the Crown Wars. These elves, however, were of the former sort.[15] The new exclusively sun elven realm of Siluvanede was founded circa −8400 DR and began its rise to power.[3][4][5][6][17] The Siluvanedenn soon desired to reclaim the exalted heights achieved by Aryvandaar.[16]

However, the realm's moon elf minority and some disaffected sun elves came to reject the elitism and unbearable arrogance of the Siluvanedenn nobles, and left the realm. They joined with a greater number of moon elves, who were migrating away from overcrowding in Evereska, and founded the neighboring realm of Sharrven in the southern reaches of the High Forest circa −7600 DR.[3][5][17][18][19] Unlike Siluvanede, Sharrven was a mixed-race and more tolerant realm.[16][15]

Circa −5300 DR, the Siluvanedenn elves established a mythal within the city of Adofhaeranede. They rechristened the city Myth Adofhaer.[5][20]

The rot set in when, circa −5000 DR, the noble but half-fiend sun elf House Dlardrageth of the elven realms of the forest of Arcorar escaped to Siluvanede.[20] By circa −4800 DR, they had subverted several powerful Siluvanedenn noble houses. They even allied with three minor noble houses, making deals and granting them caches of magic items. They encouraged them to strike at their superiors and enemies alike. They even incited crossbreeding with demons to strengthen their bloodlines, spawning the demon–elf hybrids known as fey'ri. These now fey'ri houses, while hiding their heritage, soon began to dominate Siluvanede.[21][17][22][23][7][8][note 1][note 2]

Siluvanede's rise to power and descent towards evil did not go unnoticed or unopposed, however. The leaders of Evereska and Sharrven elected to act while they still could to try to stop Siluvanede from repeating the mistakes of Aryvandaar and curb its ambition and mounting might. To bar the Siluvanedenn from reclaiming the heartland of old Aryvandaar, young nobles of Sharrven went out and did it instead. Among Aryvandaar's ruins in the center of its rule in the northern reaches of the High Forest, they founded the kingdom of Eaerlann circa −4700 DR. More open, they sought an alliance with the dwarves of the North.[16][15][5][4][17][9][7][8][24] The Dlardrageths soon fomented war against the new realm of Eaerlann.[21]

The Seven Citadels' WarEdit

Circa −4500 DR, Arcorar's High Mages located the Dlardrageths' secret lair under Ascal's Horn. Helped by Eaerlanni forces, they attacked, killing four and imprisoned the remaining three, including Countess Sarya Dlardrageth. This assault against a once-great noble house, no matter how debased and vestigial, was viewed as overly harsh by their supporters. Although their masters were gone, the Dlardrageth–influenced Siluvanedenn noble houses quickly retaliated.[21][17][7][8]

Over the next two centuries, in a series of conflicts collectively known as the Seven Citadels' War or sometimes the Sixth Crown War, a number of skirmishes were fought between the elite Siluvanedenn forces and the still-fledging Eaerlanni forces, who had support from Sharrven.[9][4][21][7][8] In the initial skirmishes, the Siluvanedenn suffered heavy losses to the Eaerlanni.[17] The elven realms of Arcorar were also dragged into the war and many elves were slain.[21]

However, in −4440 DR, following past hints from the Dlardrageths, the Siluvanedenn fey'ri houses, pressed hard by the Eaerlanni and hoping to turn the tide of the war, opened four of five Dlardrageth strongholds in the former lands of Aryvandaar. In them, beyond the bound guardian demons, they found ancient Vyshaantar weapons and magic artifacts, with which they equipped their warriors. This development brought Sharrven fully into the conflict.[7][8][17] In the following battles, the Siluvanedenn were often victorious.[9][17]

Now Sharrven applied its full might against Siluvanede, fielding elven dragon-riders and superior magical firepower, finally overcoming and even humbling the Siluvanedenn.[9][17] In the final battle, Siluvanedenn forces emerging from the fifth armory gambled and fought a desperate but losing battle.[17] With the end of the Seven Citadels' War circa −4300 DR, Eaerlann forcibly annexed Siluvanede and made it a vassal realm.[9][4][7][8]

In the aftermath, the deceits of the fey'ri were soon uncovered. Eager to avoid any association with the fey'ri, untainted Siluvanedenn High Mages placed themselves and the entire city of Myth Adofhaer in a magical stasis, so they might escape through time to the distant future.[7][8][25] The majority of surviving fey'ri warriors were rounded up and imprisoned in the fifth armory, thereafter called the Nameless Dungeon. However, some evaded arrest and would eventually give rise to long-lived fey'ri houses that successfully hid their heritage.[7][8] Three houses secretly behind the opening of the Dlardrageth armories hid in those same places, and plotted to regain their might. These Siluvanedenn exiles resumed the demon crossbreeding plan. After centuries, they became a clan of fey'ri.[17]

A Vassal RealmEdit

With Siluvanede forcibly subdued as a vassal realm, Eaerlann introduced a period of peace and prosperity that lasted some five millennia.[4][24] It remained a racially exclusive sun elf realm, however.[9]

However, the Siluvanedenn fey'ri who had survived the fall of the realm would have their revenge. Working in secrecy, circa −2770 DR, they opened a number of portals simultaneously across the lands of Sharrven, unleashing hordes of marauding monsters upon the unsuspecting elves, in an event known as the Slaughter of Sharrven. The elf realm fragmented and collapsed before any help could come. Survivors of Sharrven escaped to Eaerlann and Evereska, leaving the old realm empty bar a few outposts and settlements.[7][18][22][17][26][27] In the aftermath, the dwarf King Connar IV of Ammarindar slew many of the monsters, including the red wyrm Rithaerosurffel, the Bane of Sharrven.[7] Afterward, without evidence, the paranoid Siluvanedenn elves swiftly laid the blame on the wizards of Netheril, and swore to kill any Netherese wizard that trespassed in their land. History would only attribute the slaughter to an inexplicable explosion in the populations of monsters in the southern High Forest.[26][27][17]

In the Year of Terrible Anger, −111 DR, immense hordes of orcs poured out of Spine of the World and Ice Mountains and into the North, in a great war called the Orc Marches. They devastated everything in their path, and were not stopped until the elves of Siluvanede, Eaerlann, Iliyanbruen, and Rilithar allied against them. They halted their advance south, before they could enter the High Forest and Dessarin Valley, and broke their strength.[10][11]

Siluvanede was recorded as a contemporary of the human kingdom of Athalantar (183342 DR).[2] At the time, it neighbored the human-occupied Mlembryn lands, which extended from the western fringes of Siluvanede.[28]

Finally, in the Year of Unfettered Secrets, 880 DR, fey'ri aided some wizards in summoning demons to counter the devils that plagued the Eaerlanni citadel of Ascalhorn.[22] In the Year of the Curse, 882 DR, the victorious demons surged out of the city, later called Hellgate Keep, overrunning Eaerlann and causing its collapse.[12] However, Eaerlanni agents in Ascalhorn had discovered these fey'ri and, in the final months of their realm, imprisoned their foes in several secret Dlardrageth armories in the northern High Forest. However, the agents died, leaving no record.[17][22] The demon hordes ravaged the High Forest, though they never reached the Siluvanedenn city of Lothen.[1] Siluvanede fell nonetheless.[13][note 3]

LegacyEdit

Myth Adofhaer was remembered in a number of old Elven language songs.[29]

Lord Elorfindar Floshin was ashamed for the crimes of his ancestors and in penance elected to defend the portals in the House of Long Silences in the Ardeep Forest. He had done this for eight centuries by the mid–14th century DR, even though House Floshin's part in spawning the fey'ri was largely forgotten.[30]

Following the destruction of Hellgate Keep in the Year of the Gauntlet, 1369 DR, the remaining half-fiend Dlardrageths were freed. Breaking the magical seals on their ancient armories, they were surprised to discover the fey'ri descendants of their Siluvanedenn allies imprisoned inside. They formed a new unholy alliance under Countess Sarya Dlardrageth, and spread to renew their schemes and threaten the North.[22][23][17] One of their goals was to restore the realm of Siluvanede, and then Aryvandaar.[17] So associated were they with Siluvanede that this new alliance was also named the Siluvanedenn Phoenix and the Silver Griffons.[31] The fey'ri soon began searching the western High Forest for the ruins and remnants of Siluvanede.[32] In the Year of Lightning Storms, 1374 DR, on Alturiak 16, Sarya used the Gatekeeper Crystal to liberate the Siluvanedenn fey'ri from the Nameless Dungeon, adding them to her ranks of Daemonfey, and went on to threaten the High Forest, Evereska, and Myth Drannor.[33]

In the Year of Lightning Storms, 1374 DR, a tower in the ruins of Siluvanede had recently been discovered. Meraera, a sun elf wizard and Olin Gisir studying in and around Silverymoon, heard of this and quickly tried to assemble adventurers to support her in an expedition to the ruins.[34] At around that time, a tome discussing the causes of Myth Adofhaer's exile and conditions for its restoration was rumored to have been found in a lost Eaerlanni library. The Eldreth Veluuthra, an elf supremacist organization who shared the Siluvanedenn's attitudes, hunted for this tome.[29]

GeographyEdit

Siluvanede stood proud amidst the northwestern reaches of the High Forest,[1][15][3][4][6][5] north of the Star Mounts. These lands comprised the former frontier and agricultural lands of the realm of Aryvandaar, but did not include its ruling heartland, which had been in the northern reaches.[15] Its lands also included the Silverwood.[1]

GovernmentEdit

In the 3rd century DR, Siluvanede was ruled by a "Highlord".[2] Around 224 DR, this was Highlord Falaeve.[14] The most senior sorceress of the realm was the Aeltagarr, at the time a kindly and revered seer.[2][14]

The realm's sigil was a silver griffon.[2][31][14]

The noble elven houses present in Siluvanede included:

Each house had their own colors, which later fey'ri under the Dlardrageths tried to incorporate into their clothing.[31]

Culture & SocietyEdit

The Siluvanedenn elves were known to be haughty, more so than any other elven realm,[2] and elitist.[36] Its population, from its founding to its fall, was exclusively Ar-tel-quessir, that is, sun elf or gold elf.[15][9] The arrogance of the ancient Netherese had engendered an antipathy towards humans in the more conservative Siluvanedenn houses, as well as in other elven realms.[37]

No visitors of any other race were welcome in the realm, not even "lesser" races of elves, even as late as the 3rd century DR. The Highlord made this point crystal clear to all. The only place where other races were accepted was at the city of Lothen, on the southwestern edge. People of all races came here to consult the Aeltagarr.[2]

Siluvanedenn architecture favored bright colors and long, graceful structures made of stone. Thus their cities bristled with lofty towers and narrow spires built of brick and stone, all in bright hues. Every street seemed to be lined with splendid manors and every boulevard to arrive at a park or garden. In these, artisans worked with wood, stone, and magic to fashion objects of art.[1]

However, this beauty concealed corruption and darkness. When Siluvanede was founded, the Elven Court's punishment of House Vyshaan of Aryvandaar and the Descent of the drow were still remembered by many sun elves. Fearful of the elven gods, the early Siluvanedenn incorporated their sentiments into their new realm, banning temples and outlawing priests of the Seldarine. Siluvanedenn grew not god-fearing, but godless. This left them open to corruption, such as to House Dlardrageth and the demonic taint of the fey'ri. As a growing number of Siluvanedenn came under the sway of House Dlardrageth, more and more repeated the misdeeds of their Vyshaanti predecessors.[1] The archdevil Malkizid, The Branded King, once a patron of the Vyshaanti, once attempted to trap Siluvanede in his schemes.[38]

Nevertheless, some Siluvanedenn followed the gods, though not perhaps in Siluvanede itself. For example, Susklahava Orbryn, Roanmara Neirdre, and Phantyni Evanara, known together as the Timespinners, were priestesses of Labelas Enoreth at the Temple Beyond Time in the Eaerlanni city of Mhiilamniir, a position they held for thousands of years as undead baelnorn.[39]

MagicEdit

At the height of their power, the sun elves of Siluvanede created the golden orbs of Siluvanede, enchanted spheres of pure gold that protected against magical attack. So costly were they that each of the noble houses owned only one, which was traditionally borne by the eldest member.[40]

Notable LocationsEdit

The greatest cities of Siluvanede were:

AppendixEdit

NotesEdit

  1. Monsters of Faerûn, page 73, and Races of Faerûn, page 118, say "three minor" or "lesser" noble houses were corrupted by House Dlardrageth, but Lost Empires of Faerûn, page 84, says "several powerful" houses were "subverted", which The Grand History of the Realms page 26 repeats. These appear contradictory, but 'subvert' has multiple possible meanings, such as to overthrow or to undermine, not just to pervert or corrupt. Taken together, it appears that three minor houses were corrupted to produce fey'ri, while several more powerful houses were subverted, whether weakened, corrupted in other ways, or overthrown.
  2. Cloak & Dagger, page 91, says crossbreeding with demons had begun to produce offspring before the war, but flourished during it. Races of Faerûn says crossbreeding with demons began after Siluvanede's defeat to Sharrven and Eaerlann, presumably after an early skirmish of the Seven Citadels War, or after the war's end. However, later sources, namely Lost Empires of Faerûn, page 84, and The Grand History of the Realms, page 26, state it began before the war, c. −4800 DR, and corrupted houses were already led by fey'ri at beginning of the war. The later case is assumed here. In any case, it is a multi-generation project occurring over centuries, so no fixed date is likely.
  3. Although Siluvanede is undoubtedly long gone by the 14th century DR, no source yet found mentions how it fell. The demons of Hellgate Keep are confirmed to have caused the collapse of many realms in the area at this time, including Eaerlann, to which Siluvanede was a vassal. However, the only source to discuss this in connection with Siluvanede (Lost Empires of Faerûn page 92) only says that Lothen was spared. Lothen is the only known city of Siluvanede remaining at the time, so it is possible that Siluvanede was entirely spared the destruction (perhaps aided by the leading fey'ri houses who'd instigated it). However, the apparent intention is that Siluvanede is included with Eaerlann and fell alongside it. This is the case assumed here. In any case, the table of historical eras in Serpent Kingdoms, page 186, confirms Siluvanede fell this year.

ReferencesEdit

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  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Ed Greenwood (April 1996). “The Athalantan Campaign”. In Pierce Watters ed. Dragon #228 (TSR, Inc.), pp. 34–35.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Steven E. Schend and Kevin Melka (1998). Cormanthyr: Empire of the Elves. (TSR, Inc), p. 32. ISBN 0-7069-0761-4.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 4.8 Steven E. Schend (March 1998). Hellgate Keep. (TSR, Inc), p. 8. ISBN 978-0786907861.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 5.8 5.9 Richard Baker, Ed Bonny, Travis Stout (February 2005). Lost Empires of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 83. ISBN 0-7869-3654-1.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 16. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  7. 7.00 7.01 7.02 7.03 7.04 7.05 7.06 7.07 7.08 7.09 7.10 7.11 7.12 Richard Baker, Ed Bonny, Travis Stout (February 2005). Lost Empires of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 84. ISBN 0-7869-3654-1.
  8. 8.00 8.01 8.02 8.03 8.04 8.05 8.06 8.07 8.08 8.09 8.10 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.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 9.5 9.6 9.7 9.8 Steven E. Schend and Kevin Melka (1998). Cormanthyr: Empire of the Elves. (TSR, Inc), p. 33. ISBN 0-7069-0761-4.
  10. 10.0 10.1 Richard Baker, Ed Bonny, Travis Stout (February 2005). Lost Empires of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 99. ISBN 0-7869-3654-1.
  11. 11.0 11.1 Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 57. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  12. 12.0 12.1 Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 108. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
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  35. 35.0 35.1 35.2 Steven E. Schend, Sean K. Reynolds and Eric L. Boyd (June 2000). Cloak & Dagger. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 94–95. ISBN 0-7869-1627-3.
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Further ReadingEdit