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Brimstone
Great Reader

USA
3253 Posts

Posted - 10 Jan 2020 :  15:00:20  Show Profile Send Brimstone a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Fantastic!

"These things also I have observed: that knowledge of our world is
to be nurtured like a precious flower, for it is the most precious
thing we have. Wherefore guard the word written and heed
words unwritten and set them down ere they fade . . . Learn
then, well, the arts of reading, writing, and listening true, and they
will lead you to the greatest art of all: understanding."
Alaundo of Candlekeep
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Zeromaru X
Great Reader

Colombia
2277 Posts

Posted - 30 Jan 2020 :  01:27:39  Show Profile Send Zeromaru X a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Seems sleyvas got canonized
https://twitter.com/TheEdVerse/status/1222675166704082944?s=19

Anyways, Wooly. Are you vompiling this into some handy pdf?

Instead of seeking change, you prefer a void, merciless abyss of a world...
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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
6477 Posts

Posted - 30 Jan 2020 :  03:09:37  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
"Vompiling". Is that when you put together something that makes you sick?

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36141 Posts

Posted - 30 Jan 2020 :  04:08:39  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Zeromaru X

Anyways, Wooly. Are you vompiling this into some handy pdf?



Hadn't even considered it. I've been keeping his Tweets the same way I've kept so many of his responses here: in a big directory of text files.

I've actually got a small buttload of them right now, that I need to get posted here. Time, however, has proven elusive...

I'll note, though, that due to one of his recent comments, I've got to withdraw a former complaint of mine: Silverymoon's wards becoming a mythal was not, in fact, the retcon I thought it was.

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Zeromaru X
Great Reader

Colombia
2277 Posts

Posted - 31 Jan 2020 :  00:51:25  Show Profile Send Zeromaru X a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

"Vompiling". Is that when you put together something that makes you sick?

-- George Krashos





Something like that? (?)

Instead of seeking change, you prefer a void, merciless abyss of a world...
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TBeholder
Great Reader

2212 Posts

Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  04:17:41  Show Profile Send TBeholder a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I find more interesting this:
quote:
from Ed Greenwood
[…] Some mythals have items enchanted to be 'keys' to them (allowing passage through them, make the bearer immune to some of their
powers, and/or to turn certain powers on or off, and such keys can be considered weapons by those who know how to use them, and can even have the physical form of a weapon (i.e. a mythal key could be a dagger or sword), but there is no way to imbue a weapon
with mythal powers that can be called upon when the weapon is away from the mythal (carry the sword even a step outside the mythal, and it can no longer act as a key, so can't call on mythal powers). Moreover, any item bearing other enchantments (beyond mere
item protections like fire resistance, rust resistance, and so on) cannot be enchanted into a mythal key (the magics war with each other and destroy the item, immediately).
#Realmslore

It's an observable and practical difference between mythals and lesser wards. We know there are enchanted items that are usable as such and also double as ward tokens (Commander Ring, War Wizard Cloak, IIRC drow House Insignia, Harper badge), but with mythals it's not an option.
So, no mythal keys protected by as much as permanent alarm or tracer, never mind blade-rite.

People never wonder How the world goes round -Helloween
And even I make no pretense Of having more than common sense -R.W.Wood
It's not good, Eric. It's a gazebo. -Ed Whitchurch

Edited by - TBeholder on 01 Feb 2020 04:19:51
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36141 Posts

Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:29:31  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On great Gnomish existentialist philosophers

Jan 21, 2020


@NickelNinety7

are there any great Gnomish existentialist philosophers my Goliath Eldritch Knight could name his Owl familiar after? #dnd


@TheEdVerse

Certainly, though largely unknown outside the races of gnomes. The long-dead, famous gnome Nith Foelkor wrote the famous treatise YOAN DRAE. In the gnome tongue, “yoan” means ‘to be gnomish/I am a gnome’ and “drae” means ‘life, experience, point of view.’ Folekor’s central idea is that all thought, to be anything but erroneous, must be rooted in the experience of the thinking gnome, and all that is true about existence is due to the point of view of that gnome, and that gnome’s acts, feelings, and life experience. Nith Foelkor is pronounced “Nithh FOAL-kore,” and although his lifespan isn’t known, he was alive in 844 DR and dead by 929 DR.

The greatest female gnome philosopher who wrote anything down is Yantana Velvaerup (“Yan-TANNA Vel-VAER-uh”), known for being swift, agile, thin, restless, and mischievous; she flourished in the Dales, and is known to have died in the hard winter of 1126 DR. Her most famous chapbook is VUL TETHEN. “Vul” means ‘my’ and “tethen” is ‘musings/thinking’ (“teth” is a thought or idea). (Female gnomes tend to favour oral history chants over writing.)
#Realmslore

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Edited by - Wooly Rupert on 01 Feb 2020 20:30:17
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36141 Posts

Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:29:57  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On Freedale:

Jan 25, 2020

@TimeBust

The town of Freedale, a few miles southeast from Shadowdale down the river Ashaba, doesn't seem to come up outside of the dubiously canon "Introduction to Advanced Dungeons & Dragons". If it does exist, do you have any supplemental notes on its history, role, etc.?


@TheEdVerse

Freedale was a short-lived, temporary town that sprang up at a former woodcutters’ clearance (they were after a stand of very good trees, and moved on when they’d harvested them all) as a base for a sustained effort to found a new dale (or expand Shadowdale but have this southern arm of the cleared area have its own lord and government). It gained its name, wharves, and peak population circa 1359 DR, but dwindled and faded swiftly beginning in 1374 DR when Myth Drannor rose again (and the local strength of the elves with it, said elves frowning on a large, wholesale clearance of forest by mainly Sembian humans wanting to found more farms).

So the name and site still exist in the late 1400s DR, but the forest is fast reclaiming the cleared areas, and only a few steadings (log cabins) are still in use, occupied by human families “farming” the forest lightly (harvesting mushrooms, edible mosses, and herbs for sale to peddlers and to caravans stopping at the Old Skull Inn in Shadowdale, etc.) rather than growing cash crops. It’s more of a named site in the forest now than a settlement, and lacks a lord, a watch, and anyone at all left alive in the Realms today who’d still consider it a town. At least one dock is still usable.
#Realmslore

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36141 Posts

Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:30:59  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On farmhouses in Eveningstar:


Jan 26, 2020


@cluc2018

Hi Ed! I'm trying to figure out the specifics of farmhouses in Eveningstar, specifically the way they were dug out of the earth "like a giant rabbit warren". What sort of methods did they employ to pull this off? Thanks!


@TheEdVerse

By no means all of the farmhouses were like this. The oldest ones all were, though: you pile up earth into a hill, and build your house in the lee of it (prevailing wind in Eveningstar blows from the NW, so the hill, upon which you plant vine crops and shrub herbs for home kitchen use and to anchor the soil, and for the latter reason often plant fruit trees just upwind of the hill, too, stands to the NW of where you want your front door. Then you dig into the hill, and line those inner rooms with stone; the earth shelters them and keeps them at a fairly constant temperature. If you need to expand storage cellars, you can extend the hill, usually into a crescent shape, and tunnel it farther. Then your "front rooms" jut out of the hill on the lee (sheltered) side, the E or SE (the Stoneland-edge cliff just north of Eveningstar caused those from-the-NW winds to veer and blow straight E in some spots in the village. So your house is half (or a little more, or a little less) dug into its own little hill. Giving you rooms that in the frigid depths of winter would be free of all wind chill AND warm enough so that milk, water, other non-alcoholic liquids, and small critters wouldn't freeze.

So you started by building a stone house, or at least half of a stone house, with tile or stone roof sealed with a LOT of hardfired clay, pitch, etc. ...and then you shovel-built a hill around it. The approach (the sidewalls of the entry "slice" into the hill) could be dry-laid fieldstone or timber cribbing or whatever you could afford, and could rebuild yourself in a few years as the shifting, settling earth inevitably shoved at it.
#Realmslore


@CharlesQuintin1

You'd think frost heaves would crack the floors, and walls would be out of true in a few years. I'm no architect but I've lived up north....


@TheEdVerse

You're quite right. That's why my note about 'rebuild yourself.' The floors are flagstone; they don't crack, they heave, and you dig them up and re-lay them when you're tired of tripping. Most of the in-hill rooms have timber crossbeams to keep walls from collapsing, as well as treetrunk support posts to hold the ceiling up, and are built that way from the beginning.

[Like my real-world farmhouse and barn. I live in Canada. ;} ]

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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USA
36141 Posts

Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:31:39  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On class and magic in Lantan:

Jan 30, 2020


@FallenWyvern

Random realmslore question:

Would inhabitants of Lantan be more likely to have daVinci-esque inventions serving on them, or magical analogs (floating discs, unseen servants)?

Does the existence of magical/mechanical devices remove/reduce the 'lower class'?


@TheEdVerse

Mechanical far more than magical (though priests of Gond do use magic for propulsion and for the same rustproofing of metal that gets applied to swords elsewhere in the Realms). And yes, these mechanical devices are widespread in use, and do reduce the numbers of lower classes and disparagement of them. Lantanna society has farmers and those with no aptitude for working with their hands (sometimes derisively called “the halfwits and the dreamers”) at the bottom, workers who mine and smelt and hew a rung above, apprentices to skilled trades above them, skilled repairers and smiths above their apprentices, those who can fabricate what is new (metallurgists who can make new alloys, build prototypes and make molds) above that, brilliant inventors of the new higher still (“Inspired of Gond”), and the priests of Gond on top. But Lantan has less class friction and more ‘common feeling’ than many places; anyone willing to work isn’t despised, and everyone’s usefulness is respected (after all, farmers grow food and the starving are too weak to smelt or forge or invent).
#Realmslore

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36141 Posts

Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:35:07  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On being transgender in the Realms: (an older post someone recently linked to)


1 Feb 2019


@jayeedgecliff

I should preamble a little, because for reasons that break the gods’ brains some would ask this looking to trap a creator or some similarly juvenile nonsense. I’m an author, I know well that setting & characters are not the creator not reflective of her values

By the same measure I’m aware that in the grand scheme of The Realms every conceivable answer is represented *somewhere* because divers peoples, tribes, nations, etc. I grok.

Across … Classic Realms: Faerûn, principally the Sea of Fallen Stars, Cormyr, Waterdeep 1e grey box Maps region.

What is life like for a transgender or non-binary individual? Especially the former given the existence to such a thing as polymorph magics?

Is it significantly different for rich vs impoverished? Noble vs common, regardless wealth? Zhentilar vs Sembian?

I’d always made certain generalised assumptions about gender equity which I translated over to such matters but then I got to thinking about how on-screen War Wizards seem as much as 4/5 male, Purple Dragons almost exclusively so. Waterhavian Watch not exactly 50/50 but nearer

Zhentarim vibe a might more female, Red Wizards the opposite, and so on. So given a seeming wide swath of mindsets on the roles of sexes perhaps … gender affirming spellcraft? is maybe a less dull topic than previously envisioned?

I dig if you’d rather pretend this Question doesn’t exist. Regardless what you answer *someone* is going to probably have something horrid to say. But I hope even a ha’penny’s worth gem could be begged of you. /fin

Perhaps I should ask: does human vs other make any remarkable differences?
/fin+1


@TheEdVerse

Hi! Great question, because a topic that almost never gets directly addressed in published Realmslore. The Realms is, as you say, a big place, with many regional variations and just as much racism, sexism, and mistrust of “the other” and change than our real world. Bigots are everywhere, it is the nature of most to be at least a touch cynical, and so on. Yet to offset that, beings of any one race in most surface locales in the “classic” Realms coverage areas live with a variety of other races, and see “monsters” from time to time, too (albeit mainly dead, as wall-trophies). And the effects of magic, if not seeing spells hurled in your presence, is widespread, too.

For reasons of body weight and strength, some professions (smithing, professional soldiery, rowing) tend to be dominated by large-bodied males, but by and large (once you get away from Lolth-dominated matriarchies, the Rashemi, and the like) there is gender equality. As in: individuals may be discriminated against on the basis of age/experience, height, hardiness/have all their limbs in working order, and whether or not I like your face, BUT there’s no societal bias of role on the basis of gender. There ARE recruiting officers who go looking for guards of a particular build, size, and even hair color, and the units they assemble reflect that. Vangerdahast wanted female War Wizards “implanted” at Court and as “house wizards” in the households of the nobility he wanted watched over because he thought they were better at fitting in, acting, and being subtle than his young, ambitious male War Wizards (whom he deployed more in combat/action/military support functions, which is why you see them more on-screen), and his too-few really trustworthy and competent senior War Wizards he needed for vital roles (Laspeera being one of those).

Having wealth or status (e.g. nobility) provides a measure of freedom to “be yourself" in every meaning of the word—indulge your eccentricites/hobbies, and so on—so we see more nobles habitually doing “odd” things. Wealth allows those without the Art (gift of wielding magic) to hire spellcasting, so they can experiment with changing their own bodies in various ways, having sex while body-flying, and so on. Such “freedoms” are limited by disapproval/your own thinking depending on your local society (Sembia is very much “do what you want if you have the coin,” whereas modern-day Zhents are always aware of the Zhentarim and their scrutiny and war-readiness and supremacy of wizards and Bane and Zhentarim objectives.

However, magic is most often hired by the non-magical to change their own bodies, usually to make themselves more functional (overcome a withered or malformed or damaged limb, increase handsomeness). More than a few use it to switch gender, either to experiment or fulfill themselves (because they don’t feel comfortable as they are) or to escape persecution (by changing looks and often gender and taking on a new identity, sometimes to elude justice). “Everyone” has seen or at least heard of someone doing this, and it’s not considered crazy so much as “restless.” So although individuals who put on “camp” voices and lisps, and dress and use cosmetics to “outrage” may be ridiculed for such over-the-top behavior, there’s no stigma about changing your gender, nor would most folk in the Realms be repelled by discovering someone they have the hots for as one gender was once another. Nor is homosexuality, “swinging both ways” and dwelling in family groups of several “mates” of mixed races and genders frowned upon, societally. Individuals may find it too much for themselves to handle, but the laws and general attitudes of society don’t frown on it. There are strict laws regarding inheritance among royalty and nobility, but that’s purely to cut down on strife within powerful families and the resulting chaos.

This is, of course, given who was first publishing the Realms (that is, the time and place of publication, and the game and literary market of the time/societal attitudes of the time) something downplayed or even written out of published Realmslore, but from the outset, I thought racism (as in, prejudice against people who have a different skin color than you, or “talk funny” was ridiculous in a world in which elves rub shoulders with dwarves and scaly lizardfolk and talking dragons and talking bugs), and I thought my Realms would be a lot more tolerant than our real world of individuals who weren’t the one-man-one-woman-two-point-five-children-in-house-with-white-picket-fence family.

In my own background, I grew up in a very wealthy neighborhood filled with people from all over the world temporarily stationed in Canada as executives, and my mother died when I was young so I was raised by a tag team of VERY competent and strong-willed grandmothers and maiden aunts, and from age 14 on to right now I have worked in public libraries where almost all of my bosses and co-workers were women, many of them openly lesbian or bisexual, so none of this seemed unusual to me.

Which is a very long-winded way of saying that transgender and non-binary folk can live comfortably and accepted in the Realms, though they may have to pick their neighbors and friends to do so. [fin]

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:35:36  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On Amlaruil, and time gates:


Jan 29, 2020


@MissMartinsen

Question, Great Sage! Two, actually. Any insights as to what happened to Queen Amlaruil? Also, are the four Faerûnian Time Gates in working order post Second Sundering?


@TheEdVerse

Sorry, I missed seeing this one!

Although as of 1479 DR, Queen Amlaruil is gone from Evermeet and her throne stands empty, her fate is Elaine Cunningham’s to tell, not mine. Elminster has not heard of her death.

The time gates still exist, but they now seem to ‘twist’ (transform, unwillingly, into unforeseen shapes) those who try to use them, and teleport them to elsewhere in the Realms, and not elsewhen.

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:36:21  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On accessing extradimensional spaces within Silverymoon's wards:


Jan 22, 2020


@RandomQueriant

Question. Can you use a portable hole, or bag of holding, in 3.5 Silverymoon without a token?

Personal curiousity only. No game rides on this.


@TheEdVerse

No. Such items cannot enter the wards of Silverymoon except by being handed directly to someone within the wards bearing a lauthaul token, or using an active (i.e. suspending the powers of the wards at the time) thelbane token. They cannot be accessed/used within the wards except by thelbane use to suspend ward powers. They can be carried out of the wards without token bearing or use. Items within them survive.

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Wooly Rupert
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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:37:14  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Ed names a kraken and a leviathan in the Sea of Fallen Stars:


Jan 13, 2020


@PastorPlague

I was wondering are there any great krakens or leviathans in Forgotten Realms? I am trying to think of a patron for a warlock in the Sea of Fallen Stars if thats at all possible. The character was left for dead and thought it would be fitting. He is also a triton.


@TheEdVerse

In the 1490s DR and for about sixty years prior, a great kraken of the Sea of Fallen Stars would be Uirtu (pronounced “OO-er-two”), most often found to the west and south, and a great leviathan in the same ocean would be Seeirleeshee, who keeps to the north and east (yes, they avoid each other).
#Realmslore


@PastorPlague

Thank you so much Great Sage, anything special you would be willing to tell about Seeirleeshee? I love the lore of the realms and a leviathan is just awesome in my mind :)


@TheEdVerse

This leviathan is intensely interested in the politics and doings of all coastal-land-dwelling "dryland" races, especially their magic, for as yet unknown reasons.
#Realmslore

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Wooly Rupert
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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:37:42  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On an epic noble feud in Waterdeep:

Jan 30, 2020


@MurderHGames

Question: While there are doubtless many petty rivalries and grudges between noble houses in Waterdeep, are there any that are truly epic in 5E times, say spanning generations?

Thanks as always.


@TheEdVerse

There are far too many petty rivalries, grudges, and even outright feuds to list on several Twitters running full-tilt, but one of the most epic is the dispute between House Massalan and House Sultlue. Which has been going on for at least two centuries and has resulted (so far) in the deaths of nigh fifty noble folk and over three hundred retainers and hired guards or bullyblade mercenaries. Including six Massalan heirs (at the time of their deaths) and one matriarch (Lady Halangalan, in 1253 DR), and seven Sultlue heirs. It involves one all-out assault on the Massalan villa of the time (during which its stables was utterly destroyed and the villa partially burned down, in a night-long battle that involved three hired mages and resulted in over a hundred deaths, including neighbors and curious onlookers), one sword-brawl at a noble revel in which two Sultlue heirs (Onstlur Sultlue and then his younger brother Braegel) perished in swift succession, and one mercenary dirty-tricks explosion that destroyed House Massalan’s best ornate coach with three family members inside (six servants, two bodyguards, and half a dozen horses also died; the head of one of the latter was found on a nearby balcony, much to the horror of the old lady who liked to sun herself there). Even today, Massalans and Sultlues bristle at the sight of each other, try not to attend the same revels, and turn on heel and leave clubs and eateries if they see members of the other noble house already there (retainers don’t count).

Ere he died (of old age and gout), as a ‘wastrel uncle,’ Haerym Massalan was wont to tell anyone who’d listen that the Massalans had “won” the feud, because he’d personally managed a swindle that cost the Sultlues three ships (good cargo cogs, all) and several valuable properties in Athkatla. The Sultlues dismissed his claims with scorn, of course, but that didn’t stop them from trying to arrange his “accidental” death at least seventeen unsuccessful times.
#Realmslore


@Greysil_Tassyr

That's quite the financial expenditure... What caused such a long-running and expensive feud? And how did the Lords act, in response to such things?


@TheEdVerse

The Lords left them to it, as they usually do if noble feuds don't extend to losses to others (if that fire had spread, for example). As for what caused it...you'll have to ask nobles of both families who are long dead, unless you witnessed the advent of the feud.

Some details I don't know due to unreliable narrators (such as Elminster or Volo). Why leave such gaps? It makes it much easier for DMs to tailor matters to storylines in their own Realms campaigns. What made it so long-running? Pride and stubborness (refusing to back down); a common affliction among nobles and individuals used to power in the Realms and our real world. Used to getting their own way = DETERMINED to get their own way in this matter.
#Realmslore

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Edited by - Wooly Rupert on 02 Feb 2020 15:59:21
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Wooly Rupert
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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:38:08  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On Lauzoril:


Jan 29, 2020


@clackclickbang

And I'm not done with you yet! I was always a big fan of Lynn Abbey's treatment of Thay and Aglarond in The Simbul's Gift. She particularly added excellent detail to the characters of the Simbul and Lauzoril. The Simbul granted Lauzoril the ability to call out her true name to request aid at any point. As the timeline has now moved on and I suspect we shan't see Lauzoril or his family again, could you shed some light on when / if Lauzoril ever called in this favour prior to his assumed demise at the hands of Szass Tam and a very steep drop? It would provide closure to a plot line set up in the mid '90s and a character I really enjoyed reading about. Additionally, anything you have to say on Lauzoril's family, his daughter, etc. and if they made it out of Thay would be excellent.


@TheEdVerse

I, too, loved what Lynn did in THE SIMBUL’S GIFT. Certain things are still NDA’d, despite (as you rightly point out) the timeline having moved on, so I have to tongue-tread carefully here, but let’s just say that Lauzoril had ALREADY called in this favour before the events you allude to. I can go so far as to say esteemed Realms scholar sleyvas is right: Lauzoril did not perish then, but escaped magically, thanks to prior preparations, and got and got his family out of Thay and into ongoing hiding (that’s where the use of his favour from The Simbul comes in).

As for any question as to why Lauzoril or his fellow Zulkirs didn’t call on The Simbul to humble Szass Tam or wreck his schemes, they would not have wanted to seem weak, and Mystra would have forbidden it because of the Athora (see TYRANTS IN SCARLET by George Krashos, available at the DM’s Guild).

Moreover, both Lauzoril and both of his daughters are still alive today (in the 1400s DR).

How?

I buy sleyvas’s idea that Lauzoril’s daughter Mimuay Tavai became a mage-priestess of Velsharoon, and later the lesser avatar of Velsharoon on Abeir (as he proposed in a thread in the Candlekeep forums familiar to you). At her request, the deity awakened Lauzoril’s clone.

Lauzoril’s other daughter, Nyasia, had her own means of longevity.

What are they all up to, these days? Ah, for that we’ll have to wait and see…
#Realmslore

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On images of the Seven Sisters, Filfaeril, and her advisers:

Jan 12, 2020


@FichLuke

Hi so I was wondering if you have any artwork that you use for the leaders of world. I have a player in my group that suffers from Aphantasia. So she can't use theater of the mind. I hooked up a TV to my laptop, in order to project pictures of people.


@TheEdVerse

Who do you most need pics of? I can go look online for real people who "might be close enough to pass," if we can keep it to 20 or so. Non-humans will be harder. ;}


@FichLuke

I have been looking for pictures to represent the seven sisters. And the queen of cormyr and her adviser's. I would like to use some of the vast parts of the world that is not the sword coast. I thank you for any hel you are willing to give.


@TheEdVerse

Okay, so 1350s? Filfaeril as Queen of Cormyr?
There's a good pic of Laeral here:
https://scabard.com/pbs/campaign/52309/character/97835
and of Dove here:
https://forgottenrealms.fandom.com/wiki/Dove_Falconhand


@TheEdVerse

Here's a good one of Syluné:
https://forgottenrealms.fandom.com/wiki/Anastra_Sylun%C3%A9_Silverhand
and a good one of The Simbul:
https://www.toddlockwood.com/simbul


@TheEdVerse

Here's one of Storm:
https://forgottenrealms.fandom.com/wiki/Stormlight
and another:
https://dnd-5e-beginning-date-12-6-2015.obsidianportal.com/characters/astorma-storm-silverhand


@TheEdVerse

Here's one of Alustriel:
https://worldanvil.com/i/81849
and one of Qilué:
https://forgottenrealms.fandom.com/wiki/Qilu%C3%A9_Veladorn


@TheEdVerse

And strange as it may seem, these pics are pretty close to Filfaeril as queen:
https://pinterest.ca/pin/227150374934665708/?lp=true
and:
https://telegraph.co.uk/culture/culturepicturegalleries/9084977/Snow-White-Charlize-Theron-and-Julia-Roberts-vie-for-best-queen.html?image=7
and:
https://pinterest.ca/pin/548946642057524476/
and:
https://pinterest.ca/pin/568649890426581700/?lp=true
(top left pic)


@FichLuke

Thank you these are amazing. And I've been showing them to my wife who is my player with Aphantasia.


@TheEdVerse

You're very welcome. Any other images you need as play unfolds or now, let me know and I'll try to find someone/something suitable. :}


@TheEdVerse
I forgot Queen Fee's advisers!
Once Azoun and Vangerdahast are gone, the two highest-ranking ones would be:
The War Wizard Laspeera Inthré, who looks like this lady (top left pic):
https://pinterest.ca/pin/108227197280831351/?lp=true
except that the glasses are clear crystal (no frames at all!) and float in front of her face by magic rather than having stems that hook behind the ears in the usual manner.

And Caladnei, Vangey’s successor, depicted here:
https://forgottenrealms.fandom.com/wiki/Caladnei


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On how Cormyreans think of Thauglor:


Jan 19, 2020


@Greysil_Tassyr

Thauglor has been gone from the Forest Kingdom for a few centuries, now... Who is he, to the average Cormyrian? A historical figure? A legend that may or may not be real? A boogieman used to frighten children who don't eat their veggies?


@TheEdVerse

Thauglor the Black Doom is very much a historical figure, viewed by Cormyreans alive today as “the First King of Cormyr,” before the coming of the elves and then the humans. He’s known to all to be dead, but in Cormyrean lore he haunts the realm in a ‘good’ way (meaning: he watches over it, and visits the dreams of Cormyreans to warn them if he believes the realm is threatened by invasion, coming natural calamity, and so on). Even level-headed War Wizards (there are some, though a local jest is that there certainly aren’t many) say they dream of Thauglor from time to time, and they always take such dream-appearances as a warning and try to figure out the meaning of anything else they can remember from their dreaming, from that slumber). So everyone who grew up in the Forest Kingdom knows that ‘The’ Purple Dragon was real, is dead, and still has meaning in their lives (albeit distant).
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On Gwaeron Windstrom:


Jan 12, 2020


@jayeedgecliff

Sir Greenwood, one of the Rangers in our party was given a personal gift as a surprise side effect of a Luck Blade’s Wish charge autographed by one G. Windstrom of the Divine Windstroms & as a result player + character are contemplating taking on a clerical nature to add to her Rangeritude.

My question is, as a special treat for her player, would you be so generous as to lay a little Gwaeron lore on us all as a bit of fun? Please? He’s just treated as *such* a footnote in products. We’re pre-Time of Troubles late 1e Box era.
/thanks #128149;


@TheEdVerse

Gwaeron Windstrom, the Tracker Who Never Goes Astray, is the patron of rangers in the North (all across Faerûn, but he seems to manifest in full human form more in the Sword Coast than elsewhere, including often chasing trolls across the Evermoors; he’s said to sleep in Gwaeron’s Slumber, a stand of blueleaf trees surrounded by a ring of duskwoods, due west of Triboar). He usually appears when mortals (including a ranger who venerates him) are hopelessly lost, to silently blaze a trail for them, to a road, refuge, or familiar locale from which they can readily navigate to safety. He may also appear when mortals are beset by trolls, to rout the trolls; Gwaeron’s signature battle move is to impale a troll on his greatsword, Flameheart, cause (by silent will) the sword to burst into flame and so cook the troll so it won’t regenerate, then by swinging the sword overhead, fling the troll corpse away (often to bowl over other trolls, or to join a heap that closes a wall or gap, to protect the rear of mortals trying to defend themselves in a ‘last stand’ against superior numbers of trolls).

Gwaeron’s avatar is a tall human male, stripped to the waist, who has a long white beard and long, flowing white hair. His eyes are sky blue, and can even glow sky blue in the dark, or when he’s angry or moved. He is customarily silent and calm, slow to anger—but if he loses his temper, is frightening in his rage. He usually instructs by silent gesture and example, not by speech. If his avatar doesn’t appear, he may manifest as a silently hovering or flying white star, small and at about chest level for a tall human, except to ‘hop’ over obstacles, that leads the way to safety (through a thick forest, or to a path or cavern or spring of drinking water or way out through darkness). He will never aid followers of Malar, and instead will work against them. He is worshipped by druids, rangers, and troll hunters. He often appears to teach rangers who venerate Mielikki how to read even the most minute and subtle of signs, to track beasts through wild places and across almost all terrain.

His teachings to them are to never needlessly burn brush or the forest, nor fell trees, and to embrace the wild and its ways rather than to fear it; “civilized” folk can live in harmony with the wilderlands rather than having any need to ‘tame’ them. Hunt for need, not for sport, and never be cruel to animals, nor drive them from their nests or dens. Keep to the roads and trails rather than making new ones, but use your skills to find your own way without clearing or disturbing (leave as few signs of your own passage as possible); the way of least disturbance, through wild places and through life, is the best way.
#Realmslore

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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:41:26  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On Herne's Wood:

Jan 22, 2020


@TimeBust

Was Herne's Wood, the Utter Eastern name for Sempadan Forest in Blood & Magic, named by the colonizing Ffolk/Northlanders or the indigenous Mar? Did either group worship the deity Herne in the 600's, and do they still do so post-Godswar now that Malar took his guise?


@TheEdVerse

Herne’s Wood is only the enchanted northwesternmost corner of Sempadan Forest. It was named by the Mar, as they held it to be the abode of Herne and sacred to him. All sentients in the Realms believe in all the gods, and worship them at least to turn aside divine wrath, but certain Mar venerated Herne above other deities, as a path to being one with nature, and achieving the utmost personal power and accomplishment in life.

Today, a few still pray to the Horned Hunter, but most Mar abhor Malar, and pray and make offerings only to appease him.
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On Faerûn's most haunted areas:


Jan 28, 2020


@_Matafer

what are the top five most haunted area's in Faerun? The Mere of Dead Men has to be one of them right? Any insight #loremaster? :)


@TheEdVerse

That depends on how you define “haunted.” I’m going to assume it’s NOT ‘places with the most active undead’ because that shifts the list to undead-dominated lands like Thay and several cities and ruined castles full of undead, so if we go instead with ‘locales where the most creepy apparitions abound’ then my list, circa 1490 DR, will be:

1. Myth Rhynn (in the Wealdath)
2. The Ghost Holds (Battledale)
3. The Darkwatch
4. The ruins of Myth Drannor (and Thultanthar).
5. Realm of Wailing Fog

However, if we extend the list, we get:
6. Dead Dragon Tower (in the Winterwood)
7. The Mere of Dead Men
#Realmslore


@gkrashos

Dead Dragon Tower ... *scribbling furiously* ... do tell.


@TheEdVerse

Knew you'd notice, but the speed of your pounce remains impressive. ;}


@StevenESchend

Ya know, that’s too easy a mark from which to make a ribald joke, so I’ll let it go on by. Unlike Volo, I have some standards. ;)


@_Matafer

This was amazing Ed! Thank you so much!


@TheEdVerse

A pleasure! Always happy to talk Realmslore. And there are "badly" haunted houses in nigh every city on the map of Faerûn, of course. Er....enjoy. ;}
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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:44:43  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On Qilué Veladorn's singing sword:

Jan 17, 2020


@LysbethRaven

What was unique about Qilué Veladorn's singing sword and did it have a name? Need it for a game.


@TheEdVerse

See pgs 110-111 of my 2e sourcebook THE SEVEN SISTERS: Qilue’s singing sword is a +3 silver-coated bastard sword that sang constantly when drawn, but that is unusual in that she could store it in a fold of the Weave (extradimensional space) and directly and instantly draw it from there, rather than needing to carry it openly with a belt, baldric, and/or scabbard (so she could be ‘unarmed’ or even unclad and yet have instant access to it).

Any other being who seeks to trace the sword, or reach into or enter this extradimensional space (save Mystra, Azuth, or a Chosen of Mystra), will find their way barred by a manifestation sent by Eilistraee, equal in effect to an Evard’s black tentacles spell, that materializes right in front of them, and as it does so discharges a 4d4 lightning bolt at every being involved in the attempt to access the extradimensional space. When Qilué died, her soul and sentience went into this same ‘hideaway,’ so she survived as a bodiless Voice in the Weave.

Qilué called this blade “Dancing Mistress,” but Eilistraee called it by the name of her drow servitor whose soul and sentience was bound into it at the death of her corporeal body, before Eilistraee gave it to Qilué: Iluemeirarra. Iluemeirarra can ‘see’ out of the sword and mentally warn Qilué (or any being who has touched the sword barehanded (or been wounded by it) of the approach of magic or particular beings. So if Qilué or anyone else is holding the drawn sword, it can ‘speak’ to them, silently, in their mind, to warn of approaches (only).
#Realmslore

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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:45:42  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On public bathhouses:


Jan 12, 2020


@rwgs76

how common are public bath houses in the Realms, more specifically in the Sword Coast and the North? I imagine big cities like Waterdeep or Baldur's Gate have them, but what about smaller towns and cities like Daggerford or Yartar?


@TheEdVerse

Outside cities, public bathhouses are only found where there's a warm spring (water warm enough to keep from freezing as it emerges from the ground). Otherwise, you need a large inn with cellar hearthfires to heat the water, meaning a paying-guests-only bath house.

In cities and larger centers, there are public bathhouses in Silverymoon, Everlund, Sundabar, Citadel Adbar, and Citadel Felbarr. As well as inn, festhall, and guildhouse pay-a-fee (usually 2cp, robes and towels provided, clothes laundering 1cp more) "warm baths."
#Realmslore


@VikGray

Well atleast my character with his weird addiction to hygiene is not a "weirdo" and bathhouses actually exist in plenty.

I ofc described usual taking bath as a "barrrel with a hot water". Wonder if Mystra will be angry if someone uses magic to make a shower


@TheEdVerse

Nope, not at all. Mystra promotes the widespread, frequent use of magic by as many folk as possible. That's her aim, so although magic is rare and expensive and some mortals in the Realms might see such as use as frivolous, she wouldn't.
#Realmslore


@VikGray

So the info in Faith and Pantheons turns out to be wrong? (or missundersood by me).
Because in FaP her dogma is right against missuse of magic.
But again it might be still the case, I just do not grasp the meaning of "missuse". I am a bit confused


@TheEdVerse

"Misuse" of magic, to Mystra, is to oppress others with it, so those who use magic end up hated or feared, and/or to deny the use of magic to others (i.e. a wizard or ruler seizing magic items from commoners or others). Anything that works against magic for all, EXCEPT to curb the actions of oppressors who use magic to oppress, or who act to restrict others having or using magic, is "misuse" of magic, to Mystra. So Red Wizards or Zhentarim working tyranny through magic is bad; giving or trading magic items is not.
#Realmslore

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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:46:48  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On prominent writers or artists in Waterdeep and Chessenta:

Jan 25, 2020


@cainer1967

Are there any prominent writers or artists in Faerun? Especially around Waterdeep or Chessenta?


@TheEdVerse

Well, ahem, Volo is often to be found in Waterdeep or its vicinity, these days. ;}

But aside from him, in the 1490s DR-era Realms, there are now many, many writers, so few achieve prominence above the rest (save for the most trusted non-fiction works in particular fields of study, among the sages concerned with those fields).

Which brings us to MOST prominent, or first among equals. Which of course is a matter of furious debate among some fans, due to personal preferences.

Art is even more fractured by varying tastes, and in any event Waterdeep is awash in superb artists and counterfeiters who can closely or even exactly reproduce the styles of other painters, stained glass and mosaic makers, line-drawing artists, woodcarvers, and sculptors. Waterdeep and every major city in Chessenta can muster at least a score (each) of portrait painters who can render nigh-photographic likenesses of sitters.

Sculpture (of statuettes about half-life-sized, or smaller, in particular) has always been popular in Chessenta, especially in marble and other attractively-hued stones. The most famous sculptors are those who render fearsome monsters (such as dragons) locked in combat with (usually naked, for some long-forgotten reason) human heroes. The famous-for-centuries sculptor is Rhaeya Sharmanton (who spent her later years arving built-in house adornments like stair-rails and window frames, so her work survives in many, many places), and the currently most prominent sculptor is Orthlaul Maur, known for his short stature, bulbous nose, raging temper, and mastery of exaggerated features in his statuary that always seem to stop just short of caricature.

Writers perennially most popular through Chessenta tend to be scribes who turn out romances (chapbooks varying from tame tales of pure love and passion to outright erotica), distantly followed by sardonic satires of current politics (disguised as the life and adventure of some accident-prone or tactless character akin to the real-life Volo). The most lastingly famous of these are the romance writers Alannyth Sheol of Luthcheq and Jaraedra Nirnstorm of Pandrek, and the satirist Darondrar Ethlym of Luthcheq.

Waterdeep currently boasts no prominent sculptors or artists, though there may be as many as a hundred superb painters for hire. Four writers (beyond Volo) are widely known and respected: the adventure-saga writer Aljaerlar Morlynd of Sea Ward; the satirist and comedy-novel scribe and poet Londalar Glostyn of North Ward; and the romance writers Lorazelle Staunth of Castle Ward and Belabarra Wyvernlusk of Trades Ward.
#Realmslore

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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:47:27  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On peacestrings in Cormyr:


Jan 12, 2020


@cluc2018

Hi Ed! Are Cormyrean peacestrings made out of a specific material, or can virtually any string be used so long as it's not visibly suspicious looking and in a (current) secret knot?


@TheEdVerse

Any easily-visible string can be used that someone glancing at it wouldn't assume can be broken with ease (i.e. a cord, not a thread), that's knotted. Yes, there are slipknots that can be pulled open with a single jerk, that veteran Purple Dragons will sneer at, but most citizens would let them pass; they're only looking for at-a-glance assurance that this is someone armed but law-abiding. Most Dragon barracks, or shops nearby, sell nice-looking cord for peacestring use, but there's no requirement to use "approved" cord.
#Realmslore


@cluc2018

But they were at least mandatory during Azoun IV's reign, right? I've read about travellers around 1367 needing to ask Purple Dragons to tie the knot (hehe) in some official procedure. When did this change? Or was Volo exaggerating?


@TheEdVerse

Any Purple Dragon (or Crown official) has the right to INSPECT any peacestrings. Anyone anxious, or sullen, might ask Dragons to tie or re-tie their stringing, just to be safe. Having peacestrings unless you're bearing your royal adventuring charter, or are Crown-blessed to be armed (e.g. a Purple Dragon, recognized nobility of the realm, etc.), or have a Crown dispensation (written letter of permission) is indeed mandatory.
#Realmslore

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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:48:09  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On humans and giants peacefully co-existing:


Jan 29, 2020


@MarvelF89471649

Hi Ed. Was there a place in your Realms like Hartsvale where humans and giants had some kind of co-existence and the Jotunbrud trait was prevalent?


@TheEdVerse

“My” Realms predates the D&D game by about a decade, and the Jotunbrud trait came along more recently, but yes, in my original Realms, Sossal (the human realm) traded peacefully with giants dwelling to the north of it (in their realm of Yoruk), and the stone giants of Fuirgar traded peacefully both the human nomads of Raurin and the farmers of Durpar beyond.
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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:48:49  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On ancient names for Tiamat:

Jan 29, 2020


@ZeromaruX

Now, I have a question for @TheEdVerse , if you may indulge me. Did Tiamat had another name in ancient times?


@TheEdVerse

She had several. Among them: Raedurlaugrus, Alaugra, Miuirynmuir, and Galaglatha.
#Realmslore


@EllisThule

Question in the meta: did all those names naturally come about from your work and/or the work of others, predetermined or not? Are some of them after-the-fact character merges, for example? (Contrarily, did any of those come to you "on the spot"?)


@TheEdVerse

They all came to me on the spot, but not right now.

Tiamat, being both in the hierarchy of Hell AND a "special" dragon, is one of those interesting 'intersection-of-things' beings, and I've used her since writing up the Nine Hells in issues 75-76 of The Dragon explore the intricacies of deities assuming various names and portfolios (without revealing to mortals who's behind those masks) to gain influence/power/mortal worshippers among different groups of sentients and in different places.
#Realmslore

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Edited by - Wooly Rupert on 02 Feb 2020 16:03:11
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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:49:53  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On Loudwater's coat of arms:

Jan 24, 2020

@smparlin

does Loudwater, circa 1300s DR have a coat of arms? If so, can you describe it please. Thanks.


@TheEdVerse

It does: a “pale” (vertical stripe down the center of the heraldic heater-shaped shield) of deep blue, representing the River Delimbiyr. On either side of this, the shield is gold (representing the grain-verdant farms on both banks of the river). In the “chief” position (a vertical bar crossing the top of the shield, overlapping the pale) is a steel-gray bar, representing the bridge that crosses the Delimbiyr at Loudwater. (The blazon predates the growth of Loudwater to the confluence of the Greyflow and Delimbiyr rivers, so the Greyflow doesn’t appear in Loudwater’s arms at all.)

In the gold field on either side of the pale (dexter and sinister positions in the fess, “floating” in from the edge of the shield), are two identical steel-gray gauntlets, palms toward the viewer of the shield but clenched into fists, a left-hand gauntlet on the left and a right-hand gauntlet on the right.

These represent both the Gauntlets of Loudwater, who police and guard the settlement and its surrounding farms, and the protection/“civilization” they provide.
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Posted - 01 Feb 2020 :  20:50:21  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
On learning to speak Netherese:

Jan 24, 2020


@simontubey

Wondering: Can a player character speak Netherese?
Could you build a character who knew it from the get go, or would they need to study it? If so how long would it take to learn and where would they have to go in order to get the material?


@TheEdVerse

In the Realms of the 1300s and 1400s DR, only characters who grew up or dwelt (for a year or more, to get all the nuances) in a Netherese city or enclave would speak Netherese. Everyone else would have to learn it.

The basics could be learned from the libraries of Candlekeep or Derlusk or the Royal Palace in Suzail or certain nobles’ libraries in Waterdeep, and a few other places, but not the nuances (they require a lot of ongoing speech with those fluent in Netherese). Nuances include idioms, when phrases have double meanings or are used to convey an unspoken subtext of opinion (example: saying someone is “one of the best” in a way that conveys sarcasm or “not really, just being polite” without using intonation). Someone who’s mastered the basics could communicate haltingly, like a traveler using individual words or phrases from a traveler’s phrasebook, but everyone fluent would know they’re an outsider and struggling, and could easily “talk over their head” to elude their full comprehension. In the same way that I can explain the basic rules of many sports quite quickly and simply, but that’s a LONG way short of mastering the fine points of both the rules and being a good player.

Any descendants of Netherese who retained elements of the language in local dialect would be like a “basics” struggling traveler.
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Wooly Rupert
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On Silverymoon's mythal:


Jan 29, 2020


@Greysil_Tassyr

In 2E sources, we learned about the wards of Silverymoon. Nowhere was it implied that Silverymoon had a mythal. Then, in Lost Empires of Faerûn, we find out Silverymoon's had a mythal for 500 years. So... Mythal or no? How would you reconcile this conflicting lore?


@TheEdVerse

There's no conflict to reconcile. The general public knew that Silverymoon had wards, and some of what they did (the properties that daily affected them). The wards are either part of, or added to, an underlying mythal (depending on the ward) that's been hinted at in published Realmslore (Moonbridge and other elements) several times. It's simply a case of some folk thinking it wiser, in the hostile North, to keep SOME secrets. Elder TSR staffers who saw my turnovers have known about this mythal all along.

Although we all hunger to know everything, secrets have an allure; they maintain awe and wonder. There's a lot about the Realms that's still secret. TSR has been sitting on a file of "not yet revealed secrets of the Realms" they asked me to write, for YEARS.
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