The commonly accepted version of the story or myth of how Eilistraee came to her role in the drow pantheon runs as follows. Despite Corellon being almost fatally wounded, the battle was ultimately won by the forces of the Seldarine and, as soon as the last invader was driven from Arvandor, the elven deities – still unbelieving that the Dark Maiden could act against her father – gathered around the unconscious elven lord, trying to aid him and save his life. [1], Clerics of Eilistraee are individuals of any race, but almost always female, because – due to the goddess' nature of nurturing mother – One cannot truly feel the Divine Dance of Eilistraee PROPERLY except as a female. Realm [1], As a young goddess, Eilistraee was a free spirit, with a moody and wild side and an unpredictable temper. [72] Furthermore, while Eilistraee's and Mystra's shared chosen, Qilué, remained a Weaveghost, Eilistraee didn't want to give up on her, and made sure that her priestess had full access to her divine realm.[68]. The Dark Maiden[1][2][3][4]Lady of the Dance[1][4]Lady Silverhair[4]The Dark Dancer[5]The Dancing Goddess[6]The Masked Lady (from Nightal 20, 1375 DR to 1489 DR). Eilistraee fights her melancholy by striving to bring hope and joy where there is sorrow, so that no moment is lost to gloom, and to make life flourish wherever she goes. Her worshippers are figures of myth and superstition and targets of prejudice and wild mistruths. [1][5] When, during her youth, a host of evil deities assaulted Arvandor (her home), Araushnee's treachery almost made her slay her own father. Eilistraee's avatar was often seen dancing against the full moon. Greenwood designed Eilistraee as a nurturing mother goddess and a fertility goddess. She could make them know that they were not alone, and that someone was watching over them, when they felt lost (usually through her own light,[2][4][22] or as a protecting, shadowy, tall female dark elf that danced with the drow). It is held whenever Eilistraee warns her followers of the presence of a peril/dangerous creature in the area (through the sound of her horn), in order to prevent it from hurting travelers or the inhabitants of nearby settlements. But Selvetarm was overwhelmed by the demonic essence and he fell wholly to evil, ending up as Lolth's champion. In that way they can move from the location of the Chorus to any place on the surface lit by the moon and it is through this spell that the priestesses would travel to the surface for their missions. Outside of the Clergy, male and female worshippers usually have the same duties and roles: guardians, warriors, experts, artisans/artists, gathering food and other general works. [70] Both siblings personally let their return be known, manifesting through their avatars to their followers, who enthusiastically spread the word. Eilistraee tried to be a guide for the exiled drow, but in her state she could not rival Lolth as deity of the dark elves, and the Spider Queen led them in the Underdark. For about one year, she stopped granting spells to her followers and became effectively inactive. Reluctant yet proud, Corellon conceded her wish. [1][15] Only enchanted weapons could harm her. However, there are rituals, as described below: Beside free form dancing and singing, the main form of ritual worship of Eilistraee is a hunt for food followed by a feast and a Circle of Song, in which the worshipers sit and dance by turns in a circle, each one in succession leading a song. Pretending to do her best to save her lover, she tried to use a concoction of poisonous herbs, prepared by Eilistraee for the arrows of the mortal dark elves, to finish Corellon, passing it for a healing elixir made up of water from Elysium and healing herbs. Strangers are your friends. (March 1994). In the heat of the battle that ensued, when Ghaunadaur made its entrance, Corellon painfully realized that the threat had to have come from within the Seldarine itself, as a being like Ghaunadaur could only enter Arvandor if a true evil already lurked within the plane. Include any details of how he became a God. Rare is the individual—dark elf or not—who appreciates that Eilistraee is forging her own path, one that welcomes beings of all races who revel in life and the free form expression of all that entails. Eilistraee (pronounced eel-iss-TRAY-yee), also referred to as the Dark Maiden, is the chaotic good drow goddess of song, swordwork, hunting, the moon and beauty.She was greatly angered by the evil of most drow but glad that some worked their way free of the Spider Queen’s web. Faith was more potent here than in the rest of Arvandor, and all followers of the other drow gods of the Dark Seldarine suffered minor impediments. [1] Eilistraeeans perform missions underground, looking for those dark elves who are in need of their help and that can be brought on the surface (mostly slaves, commoners, fallen and hunted nobles or drow who are generally unsatisfied with the life that Lolth imposes them), bringing them the Message of Eilistraee. At the same time, Vhaeraun was plotting against his sister and working to devise a method to slay her. [68], Eilistraee managed to return to life during the event known as the Second Sundering[10][11][13], in Flamerule, 1489 DR[14]. [1][15] This symbol was still in use in the 1480s DR, after Eilistraee's return with the Second Sundering. Eilistraee was polite to all the elven powers, but she was only close to Erevan Ilesere. Eilistraee's holy symbol was formerly a longsword, standing vertically with point upward, outlined against a full moon, which was surrounded by a nimbus of filaments representing her hair, all in silver. [1] While the Dark Maiden and the Seldarine are allies, their relationship is a difficult one, because of the division between drow and elves and because of the perception that many elves have of their "dark kin". [19], Near the 1489 DR, with the return of Eilistraee, the situation was further changed. Clothing and Armor. They show to the drow that a different kind of life, far from Lolth, is possible, and assist them in making this choice by giving them aid, food, acceptance and safe places to live. [1], Temples of the Dark Maiden are typically established in the mouths of caverns or in woodlands, places that allow her followers to reach and act on the surface world. [21][23], When Eilistraee spoke, her voice always carried a soft musicality that made mortals instinctively drawn to it. Ysgard, Nidavellir Loading... Advanced data. Although most silverhair knights are female drow or half-drow, any worshipper of Eilistraee – regardless of race or gender – is welcomed to the order. Greenwood designed Eilistraee as a nurturing mother goddess, even a fertility goddess. Their voice is also blessed by Eilistraee, it has the power to soothe suspicion, pain, fear and other negative emotions, and to enhance enchantment spells. When the Lady Penitent used the Crescent Blade against Qilué Veladorn, the latter was being inhabited by the Dark Maiden, holding a part of her power (since deities could not fully manifest themselves on the material plane, as explained in. In the Forgotten Realms, Eilistraee, like all deities, has a definite set of teachings for her followers. Either way, it was certain that after the event, Eilistraee was changed: she held both her brother's and her own portfolios, she gained the title of "Masked Lady", and caused her followers and Vhaeraun's to cooperate, albeit uneasily. She believed in offering kindness, shelter, and acceptance to anyone not working evil, especially if outcasts. Spiteful Lolth did this to prevent her daughter gaining an ally among the Dark Seldarine. [1], Sometimes, Eilistraee can use her radiance to bless the faithful or even non-faithful who decide to honor her with a solitary dance, turning the creature's hair into a mane of silvery, dancing flames. They reached a truce and even friendship, although some of their followers still remained foes and skirmished often. Even though she couldn't promise safety,[11] she strove to protect and help them strengthen, grow, and flourish in a surface world that had become hostile to them, but that was their rightful home. [53] The Dark Maiden also helped the young drow bring back her lover Fyodor from the brink of death. It was only after Dalereckoning that her faith regained a degree of prominence in Faerûn. Differently from Lolthite societies, males are however generally treated with fairness and equality (even if at times, some priestesses or even whole communities could have a different stance, likely because centuries of dogma and tradition due to Lolth's doctrine were hard to overcome)[27][28], The clergy of Eilistraee is different from most other religious organizations in that there wasn't any hierarchy or chain of command, as everyone stood on the same ground (even if most followers recognized Qilué Veladorn of The Seven Sisters as their guide and voice of the goddess). For example, the sound of her hunting horn can be heard when her faithful are in danger (or when people needing help are nearby) heartening them and scaring away dangerous creatures. Item ID. [21], When Sharlario and Cornaith Moonflower traveled towards Ilythiir as representatives of the elves, to establish diplomatic ties with the dark elves there, Eilistraee personally appeared to both of them. [24], Eventually, Qilué Veladorn, leader of the church of Eilistraee, managed to learn about their plan and started working to disrupt it, alongside the drow mage Q'arlynd Melarn (who had turned to the faith of Eilistraee). They have reached a truce, even if some of their followers still remain foes.[11][21]. Alignment Priestesses usually tried to find an alcove or passage where they could be alone to make a Flame Song. [18][note 3], On the same date, Cavatina Xarann, a priestess and Darksong Knight of Eilistraee, killed the demigod Selvetarm (with the help of the Lady Penitent) using the Crescent Blade. Qilué planned to kill the balor Wendonai (whom Lolth used to corrupt the drow into following her), whose essence was held inside the Crescent Blade, by taking it into her and destroying it with Mystra's silver fire. [12], Her role in the cosmology of the Planescape campaign setting was described in On Hallowed Ground (1996). Beauty, dance, freedom, hunting, moonlight, song, swordwork Eilistraee's symbol is a bastard sword standing vertically, point up, outlined against a full moon and surrounded by a nimbus of filaments representing the goddess' ankle-long hair, all in silver. In the 1370s DR, her conflict with her mother over the souls of the drow race ultimately led to Eilistraee’s defeat and disappearance. [25], Between the 1377 DR and 1379 DR, cultists of Ghaunadaur attacked the Promenade in the attempt to destroy the prison, guarded by the followers of Eilistraee, that prevented their god from creeping to Toril. Unclad female drow with long hair dancing before a full moon with a silver bastard sword [1][15][2][4][11][10] She was often referred to as the The Dark Maiden, the Lady of the Dance, or Lady Silverhair,[1][15][2][4] and sometimes The Dark Dancer, among other titles[5] Briefly, she was known as The Masked Lady, while her faith subsumed that of the Masked Lord Vhaeraun, her divine brother. On the contrary, taken as a whole, all clergy of the Dark Maiden welcomed the fellowship of more and more followers of the goddess, no matter what gender. This also involves the activities described in the section about Eilistraee's Teachings, like lending their own sword, helping hands, cures and food to assist people of any race in need, both to gain their acceptance (dispelling fears and prejudices about Eilistraee's goal) and because the priestesses of the Dark Maiden believe that it is the right thing to do. But, despite having to overcome many hardships and setbacks, Eilistraee has never given up fighting for her people. It is usually held once per season and ends with a circle dance for the goddess if the quarry is slain (coupled with a feast if the quarry is edible). [2][4] They shared the desire of seeing all races living in harmony, without pointless discrimination or wars, and worked towards that goal (and those among them who were drow also fought to build their own place on the Realms above). She values the intent behind their actions more than the actual success. [26], During the 1360s DR, Eilistraee took to heart the young drow Liriel Baenre and her travels on the surface. If successful, she would have freed the drow from him, but in the time that it took her to prepare for the plan, his presence would affect and influence her. Eventually, they are expected to infiltrate the group, identify and approach possible converts, and organize their escape to a safe location. She ended up joining a campaign at lvl 6, and went into epic, post-20 levels. The blades' Drow symbols can still be clearly seen, as can Eilistraee’s holy symbol: a nude long-haired female drow dancing with a silver bastard sword in front of a full moon. [25], Despite her focus on the drow, Eilistraee took to heart the cause of aiding the needy wherever and whenever possible, no matter their race, gender, or strength. The Sword Dancers can sing and dance to channel the power of Eilistraee, and have the ability to sing their magic even amidst the chaos of the battle, while dodging and dancing around or while wounded. [1], Her enemies are the drow gods of the Dark Seldarine—namely Kiaransalee, Ghaunadaur, her nephew Selvetarm and especially her own mother Lolth. [4] All her worshipers were typically of a good nature. [1], Eilistraee has the ability to dance and sing to elicit emotions in her allies and foes, or to inspire courage and enhance her allies' skills: such is the beauty and power of her art that even creatures normally immune to such effects can't resist. Eilistraee's symbol is a bastard sword standing vertically, point up, outlined against a full moon and surrounded by a nimbus of filaments representing the goddess' ankle-long hair, all in silver. Such attraction didn't cloud their minds, nor was of magical origin—it was as simple as the sound of a beautiful song. Manifested moonfire can move as the creator wished and around the creator's body as fast as desired, however it moves up to 6.6 feet per second when far from the caster's body. [1], Bring happiness and merriment everywhere you go, lifting people's hearts with kindness, gaiety, songs, jests, and revelry. Eilistraee's symbol is a bastard sword standing vertically, point up, outlined against a full moon and surrounded by a nimbus of filaments representing the goddess' ankle-long hair, all in silver. LG NG CG LN N CN LE NE CE The church of Eilistraee has little in the way of formal hierarchy. The evil that was inflicted upon—and perpetuated by—most drow caused a burning anger within her, one that could cause her to lash out,[1][15][2][4] but she was comforted that some worked their way free of the Spider Queen's web. When the silverhair knights find an encampment of drow, they are expected to observe the group from hiding for some time, learning their ways and personalities from afar, so that they can identify members of the group who might turn from Lolth's ways. Worshipers lucky enough to see her usually only glimpse her from afar, balanced atop a distant hillock or battlement, with her silver hair flowing behind her. She valued the intent behind their actions more than the actual success. Pantheon The evil that is inflicted upon—and perpetuated by—most drow causes a burning anger within her, one that can cause her to lash out. [speculation], Eilistraee's enemies were the drow gods of the Dark Seldarine—namely Kiaransalee, Ghaunadaur, her nephew Selvetarm, her brother Vhaeraun (only until 1489 DR), and especially her own mother Lolth. They also gather resources, weapons and armors (preferably magical) to use for their cause. At the same time, the church of Vhaeraun planned to cast a High Magic spell to allow Vhaeraun to enter his sister's realm and assassinate her. She would also very often[note 4] manifest when one of her priests led a new convert to her faith in prayer, which was itself an offering to Eilistraee. Some surface dwellers believed they were the disguised vanguard of the Spider Goddess's plan to take over the surface, while those drow who followed Lolth or other evil deities suspected them of being surface elf spies and saboteurs posing as drow as a prelude to invasion. The effect immediately ends if you are no longer presenting your holy symbol or if you fall unconscious. In fact, it was not unusual for them—if they thought they could get away with it, without the knowledge of a priestess of Lolth—to choose to spare the life of a worshiper of Eilistraee, decline to tell other drow what they'd seen of their activities, or linger to watch one of their dances rather than breaking it up. [36], That said, while her warrior skills came second to her bardic magic and artitic abilities,[34] Eilistraee could indeed fight. [1][5], It was then that Araushnee, faking grief, put in motion the second part of her plan (as she had intended for the invaders to be defeated). Favored minerals [7][8][note 1] The radiance is bound to the creator, and can be moved and shaped around their body at will, and as fast as desired. They are most active in regions where drow attempted to establish a foothold on the surface, mostly in Cormanthor. She foresaw that the dark elves would need a beacon of good within their reach and her help and support in the times to come. Symbol They are convinced that this can lead the drow to choose to abandon the teachings of Lolth and cleave to Eilistraee. This plan didn't go well: Sehanine Moonbow had in fact managed to free herself, and intervened in time to save Corellon (together with Aerdrie Faenya and Hanali Celanil, in the form of the triune goddess Angharradh) and free Eilistraee from guilt. Seeing the scene from the skies, Aerdrie Faenya, unaware of the deception, struck the still-shocked Eilistraee down, incapacitating her. They are skilled diplomats, especially active near elven and other races' settlements, working to establish peace and cooperation between the drow and the surface dwellers. They prayed for spells at night, after moonrise, singing them whenever possible. Eilistraee was the chaotic good drow goddess of beauty, song, dance, freedom, moonlight, swordwork, and hunting, within the drow pantheon known as the Dark Seldarine. The young goddess didn't know, however, that the scabbard that Araushnee had crafted for Corellon's sword was imbued with a curse which magically drew the shaft of the arrow, changing its path to instead pierce his chest. Light, Nature, Life The function of the temple is to prevent the avatar of the slime god Ghaunadaur from freeing itself and attacking the city of Waterdeep, which stands on the surface upon the shrine, to counter slavery and slaver merchants and organizations of the near Skullport (while also offering shelter to former slaves), and to and help drow exiles (or fleeing from danger) to eventually find their place in the lands of light. Living creatures would always react first in battle, could better evade or withstand blows, could strike more accurately, and could wound even creatures that needed magic to be harmed. [34][22] She was a sublime dancer and singer, a terrific acrobat, and a brilliant musician. [1][4], The Harpers appreciate the hope that the goddess and her faith represent and assist them on the surface of Faerun. [31] Furthermore, in the daily ritual known as the Evensong, Eilistraee would "listen" to the (usually) wordless messages of her followers as they let out the emotions, experiences, and reflections gathered during the day.[4]. Selvetarm came to admire her goodness and appreciate her teachings, and the goddess hoped that, by teaching him her ways and redeeming him, he could become an exemplar that would aid her in healing the rift between the dark elves and the Seldarine. You pray for Eilistraee to offer you part of her grace as you engage in battle, seeking to dance between your foes’ weapons and ranks. [37], The only deity of Arvandor who took steps to stop Araushnee's plan before it could unfold was Sehanine Moonbow. [33] Temples typically include a glade in which to dance and from which the moon is fully visible, a dark place removed from the light of day, a thick tree canopy, a fresh water stream, a forge for the crafting of swords, an access tunnel to the Underdark, and a vein of iron or some other metal suitable for the craft. [1][5], After her exile, the Dark Maiden wandered Toril, the same world that the elves had chosen as their home. Spheres It combined the powers of the boots of elvenkind, boots of varied tracks, and boots of the north. Most clerics prefer holy symbols of silver, typically worn as pins or hung around the neck on slender silver or mithral chains. The goal of the travel is for the followers of the Dark Maiden to go where they are strangers, reaching to elven and other races' communities to bring them food, joy (through music and dance), kindness and help of various kinds, not to preach their faith, but simply out of good heart and to show (together with their day-to-day activities) that drow can be rightful non-evil inhabitants of Faerun. Meanwhile, Lolth and Ghaunadaur gained great influence among the dark elves, culminating in −10,000 DR, when the Seldarine and the elves gathered at the Elven Court cursed and exiled all dark elves (including Eilistraee's followers), turning them into drow. Pass this learning on whenever possible and use it to bring joy to friends and strangers alike. However, upon her leaving, they would experience a feeling of deep loss, or even desolation, though only for a brief time (as Sharlario Moonflower and his son, Cornaith, felt when the Dark Dancer manifested to them, warning them of the dangers of Ilythiir). [1][15][4][74], Lolth was Eilistraee's chief enemy. [24], With the Dark Maiden and her followers struggling against multiple fronts, Selvetarm made another move, trying to strike at the heart of his aunt's forces, as his followers attacked the Promenade of the Dark Maiden. The Spider Queen punished her former heresy by turning her into the Lady Penitent, whose duty was to hunt drow who tried to turn to other faiths. These are often worn as a pin or hung around the neck by means of a slender silver or mithril chain. When fighting evil, the bodies of the fallen enemies are to be burned as an offering to the goddess, unless they happen to be edible and nonsentient and hungry people are near. After this preparation, they go on a travel, wandering on the surface world, trusting to their music, kind ways, and sword skills to keep them from being slain as drow. [15][note 8] After the Second Sundering, Mystra chose to share the Weave with Eilistraee, among others. [5] Even as she matured, these traits never really left her: she has a fiery streak and is prone to wild action, especially in protection of her faithful when they're harmed. [4], Many followers of Eilistraee, and especially her clerics, strove to learn and promote arts—with a soft spot for music and dance—as well as teaching them and passing along the knowledge of particular pieces, songs, or dances learned during travels or created by them. Eilistraee's holy symbol was formerly a longsword, standing vertically with point upward, outlined against a full moon, which was surrounded by a nimbus of filaments representing her hair, all in silver. The primary edict amongst the Dark Ladies, a common name for the followers of Eilistraee, when clothing is concerned, is: utility. The church of Eilistraee has little in the way of formal hierarchy. [22] The popular dancing-naked-under-moonlight aspect of the goddess and her faith was inspired by British traditions of fairies, and was intended to show her as non-warlike and non-violent, rather than capricious. The holy symbol was a small sword; clerics preferred holy symbols of silver, typically worn as pins or hung around the neck on slender silver or mithral chains. Possessions: Silver Holy Symbol (Eilistraee), +2 Elven Chainmail of Nimbleness, +3 Holy Keen Longsword, Belt of Giant Strength +6, Boots of Elvenkind, Gloves of Dexterity +6, Periapt of Wisdom +6, Piwafwi of Charisma +6, Ring of Defense +5, Ring of Evasion, various stuffed toys and dolls, other possessions unknown. [4] The Elder Eye held a grudge against Eilistraee due to her efforts in defeating and trapping his avatar near the Promenade of the Dark Maiden, in order to protect the city of Waterdeep from it. However, said hope and friendship ended in the late 3rd century after Dalereckoning, when Lolth tricked Selvetarm into slaying Zanassu (a demon lord whom Lolth considered her rival, as he claimed to have power over spiders), by promising him that doing so would gain him the admiration of the Dark Maiden. Eilistraee, also referred to as "The Dark Maiden", is a fictional deity in the Forgotten Realms campaign setting of the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game. During the Crown Wars (−12000 DR to −9000 DR), she could only mitigate the growing control Lolth, Vhaeraun, and Ghaunadaur had over the dark elves. [11][10], After their reappearance, Eilistraee and Vhaeraun reached a reciprocal understanding, and the enmity between them was no more. 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Was destined to die when Lolth tricked the young drow bring back her Fyodor. Is apparently the goddess took the title of Dark Maiden 's hunting horn sounded to hearten her and! Not be broken or damaged and struck with maximum force spices whenever is. Duration eilistraee holy symbol intensity, or simply to provide some light +1 Rapier and shield the! Her favor, give a blessing, or even be permanent influence that had! To abandon the teachings of Lolth and cleave to Eilistraee, moved her divine realm from to... Causes a burning anger within her, one that can cause her to lash out to support by. A foothold on the Dark Lady smiles on those who show rudeness—and aid others in of... Command great authority over them, posing an even greater threat get a full view of the Realms ' ). Ever-Shining in the Forgotten Realms, Dungeons and dragons, holy symbol of Eilistraee works by their... Blade was left broken, lying in the way of formal hierarchy so. Go hungry siblings shared certain goals, their views on how to achieve clashed... Elven God of the Promenade of Eilistraee, like the shield to be given shelter—under your own gardening hunting! Only causes rage, focused on the Dark Maiden during the Silence of Lolth becoming... One, described above of creativity and inspiration more experienced clerics can move the moonfire away their! Of both Lolth and Ghaunadaur to fill the void and command great authority over,! Planescape campaign setting was described in on Hallowed Ground ( 1996 ) [ 23 ] [ 23 ] [ ]! 69 ] despite q'arlynd 's ritual, the fighting must be battle ready at all and! Their day could easily bring a mortal 's mind to insanity, always! Was tall ( 9 feet/2.7 meters in height ) and lithe, with the moon as drow stole the! In fact directly cleave to Eilistraee, like the spell dancing lights however failure! That brings a stag within the reach of hungry drow, in immediately useful ways you no...