Ancient Elvin mythology encompasses the collection of beliefs and rituals originating in early First Age in the form of cult practices. These groups vary enough for it to be possible to speak of "Elvin cults" in the plural, though most of them share similarities. All nations of the Elves recognize the eight Greater Gods and Goddesses (Zenwon, Agadeon, Uleydon, Narkon, Kerea, Menea, Lyfea, and Inatea), although many scholars used language that seems to assume a single transcendent Almighty Creator named " Ö ". Nations of Wenti (Free Elves) often worship specific Deities (scions of the Gods), sometimes with epithets that distinguish them and specify their local nature.
Llyoriane, Queen of the Green Elves
The Flow born from the Secret Fire
Unlike the other species created by the Gods who live entirely in the physical world, the Elves, who are the children of Ö, can project themselves into the extra-dimensional planes roamed by the Flow, that High Magic born from the Secret Fire, summoned from the Void by Ö and which is the source of all energies and forces. Like the Gods or the Deities, Elves have a connection with the Flow and can access the forces driven by that delicate magical substance that surrounds Oron. As time passed, Elves became divided over how to live in the world the Gods built. Some thought the physical world was the true gift of the Gods and to fully appreciate its glory they must adapt to it. Failing to do so would be an insult to the Gods. Meanwhile, others thought the connection with the Flow was their most precious inheritance from Ö and they began to see the Gods as rivals for the control of the Flow. The argument proved irreconcilable and Elvin nations continue to worship (or not) the Gods in their own way. Each people created its pantheon or alternatilvely totally abandoned faith in its own mythology. The first group of Elves, often ruled by clerics and matriarchs have kept a lesser connection with the Flow through the worship of their respective pantheon, while the second group, where mages and sorcerers are predominant, remains strongly bound to the Flow and never abandonned its ambition to seize the full control of the High Magic from the Gods.
Pantheon of the Green Elves
Llewenti theology (the cults of the Lost Islands' Deities) is polytheistic, based on the assumption that there are several Deities influencing the fate of the Green Elves. There is no hierarchy of Deities, as none is preponderant. Some Deities have dominion over certain aspects of nature. For instance, Eïwal Ffeyn is the wind-god, sending storms and cyclones, Eïwele Llya rules over nature throughout the Lost Islands, and Eïwal Lon controls light. Other Deities rule over abstract concepts; for instance Eïwele Llyi controls love and Eïwal Myos pleasure. While being immortal, the Islands Deities are certainly not all-benevolent or even all-powerful. They too bow before the power of the Flow, which can override any of their divine powers or wills. The Deities of the Green Elves act like mortal Elves and are subject to vices and passions. They can interact with Elves, sometimes even spawning children with them. At times certain Deities would be opposed to others, and they would try to outdo each other. Some of the Lost Islands' Deities are specifically patron of a certain Llewenti clan. Eïwal Myos is associated with the city of Mentodarcyl and the clan Myortilys, Eïwal Lon with the city of Yslla in the valley of Nagrond and Eïwele Llyi with the city of Llafal. Other Gods outside of the pantheon are associated with nations outside of the Lost Islands; Gweïwal Uleydon is associated with the Blue Elves and the kingdom of Essawylor, and Gweïwal Narkon with the Sand Elves (Alaswenti) and the Anroch desert. Though the worship of the Lost Islands' Deities spread from one locality to another, and though most larger cities boasted temples to several of them, the identification of different Deities with different places remains strong across the Lost Islands.
Eïwal Ffeyn: Deity of winds and storms, Divinity of freedom, rebellion and anger
Eïwal Lon: Demigod of sunlight, Divinity of wisdom
Eïwal Vars: Deity of hunting, Divinity of war and strength, Lord of forests and beasts
Eïwal Myos: Deity of illusions and shadows, Divinity of art, poetry and pleasure
Eïwele Llyi: Deity of fountains, Divinity of love, beauty and arts
Eïwele Llya: Deity of nature, Divinity of fauna, flora and fertility. She is also known as the 'Mother of the Islands'.
Eïwele Llyo: Deity of starlight, Divinity of dreams, fate, death and reincarnation
The Islands Deities: Ffeyn, Llyi, Llya, Llyo and Vars
Deities and Demigods of the Lost Islands
Ffeyn is the Deity of winds and storms, the son of Gweïwal Zenwon and Leïwele Sysa and the historical leader of the Lost Islands’ divinities during their rebellion against the assembly of the Gods. He is worshipped in the Lost Islands as the Elvin Deity of freedom and impulse. The unfaithful and unpredictable Gweïwal Zenwon is said to have fathered many Deities and Demigods. The oracle of Llafal states one of his lovers was said to be Leïwele Sysa, Goddess of strife, by whom he fathered Eïwal Ffeyn. After the Gods decided to subdue the Elves and offered them immortality, Eïwal Ffeyn led a group of Deities into open rebellion against the assembly of the Gods. He became the protector of the ‘Wenti’, the Free Elves of the Mainland, and pushed for their independence.
Gweïwal Uleydon was sent by the assembly of the Gods to punish his initiative. Eïwal Ffeyn was then imprisoned in the ocean’s depths by the Greater God of all waters. But the rebel Deity eventually escaped his prison. Eïwal Ffeyn found refuge in the Lost Islands. The Deity of storms fled the wrath of the Gods to join his consort, Eïwele Llya, and their many offspring, including firebirds, hippogriffs and griffons. When he discovered that a Storm Giant, one of the sons of Gweïwal Agadeon, had captured his beloved spouse and held her prisoner, abusing her at will, his fury knew no bounds. A terrible battle commenced across the Lost Islands, and the struggle lasted for decades. Eïwal Ffeyn finally prevailed against the Storm Giant and his sons: sons whom the Giant king had forced Eïwele Llya to provide for him. It is said that, to punish his enemy, Eïwal Ffeyn condemned him and his descendants, the Giants of Arob Nisty, to build Tios Lluin’s temple of stones, and that he cemented the great construction work with their blood and their bones. Eïwal Ffeyn used the High Magic of the temple of stones to tear a star down from heaven, hitting the centre of the main island, Gwa Nyn. The impact levelled mountains, reshaped rivers, carved out valleys and even awoke a volcano. Eïwal Ffeyn’s incredible feat confirmed the wind Deity’s dominion over the Archipelago, and his insolent opposition to the Gods. The meteorite’s fall was seen from all over the Mainland and interpreted by all Free Elves as an invitation to join him in the islands he had designed as their ultimate refuge. Eïwal Ffeyn then summoned the three Sisters Deities Llyi, Llya and Llyo to the Archipelago, and asked them to join him in delivering the Elves from the tyranny of the Gods. He warned them that, because of their jealous and controlling nature, those Gods feared the Elves’ power would grow too great to be governed. The Deity explained that the Gods encouraged the more easily influenced Giants to populate the Archipelago and put them in place to scare the Elves, and rob them of their rightful kingdom. In the scriptures of Eïwal Ffeyn: ‘The Lost Islands are promised to Llyoriane and to her Seeds.’ First, it was the Green Elves who were to be Llyoriane’s Seeds. This interpretation was then extended to all Elves of the Archipelago who devoted their lives to realizing the vision of those Deities who forged the Lost Islands. Since the earliest days of the world, the danger that barbarian invasions represented for the Lost Islands was kept at bay by the storms of Eïwal Ffeyn. His breath was the very air of the Archipelago. The matriarchs of the Llewenti clans were the custodians of his holy word. Eïwal Ffeyn did not want to allow the coming of the Hawenti fleet to the Lost Islands, for he anticipated the threat that the High Elves might become to his protégés, the Llewenti clans. He conjured all his might to challenge the power of that fleet as it sailed the Austral Ocean towards the Archipelago’s shores. He summoned to his side Griffons, Hippogriffs, Storm Eagles and powerful air spirits to fight the invaders, but he was defeated. Eïwal Ffeyn was overcome. The combined powers of the Dor princes, the Dol lords and the Ruby College prevailed. He was cast out of the Archipelago and incarcerated in the Sea of Cyclones. Eïwal Ffeyn had provoked Gweïwal Uleydon’s fury by trying to sink the Hawenti fleet, resulting in Gweïwal Uleydon granting the High Elves with the power to imprison the divine offender in the Sea of Cyclones. Eïwal Ffeyn's realm is the Sea of Cyclones, which shifts across the border between the Lost Islands and the Atolls of Fadalwy. He is held prisoner in this vast sea by a powerful High Magic spell devised by the Hawenti King, Lormelin the Conqueror, with the assistance of Gweïwal Uleydon who entrusted him the Lenra Pearl. Since that day, the most serious threats faced by the Lost Islands are the storms that sweep in from the Austral Ocean. Those unflinching demonstrations of Eïwal Ffeyn’s wrath scour the weak, leaving only the strong to multiply and prosper. Eïwal Ffeyn’s cult is omnipresent among the Llewenti clans. The Deity of winds and storms, and Divinity of freedom, rebellion and anger used to be considered to be the Green Elves' greatest ally, and also the protector of their freedom, though his wrath is shunned. The devastating potential of his anger is well known. Eïwal Ffeyn is always attempting to break free from his bonds. Many of the wisest Llewenti matriarchs believe that the Storm Deity has become dangerous: that his imprisonment drove him to madness and that he has become uncontrollable. The Green Elves now fear his wrath and his thirst for revenge, for his destructive power could severely damage the Lost Islands, were he able to escape his vast oceanic prison. His vengeance could be blind and furious; he could shock the Archipelago and its natural balance forever. Disappointed by his former protégés the Green Elves and feeling abandoned, Eïwal Ffeyn entrusted his power to an Irawenti navigator, Feïwal dyn Filweni, who managed to cross the Austral Ocean and reach the Lost Islands. Eïwal Ffeyn is represented as a tall Elf with long blue hair. A pair of large, bird-like wings sprout from his back. He is also known to be strict and haughty. His symbol is a storm cloud and his bird is the eagle.
Lon is the Demigod of sunlight, and Divinity of wisdom, crafts, poetry, and discernment. He is also called 'Preserver of the Elves'. Eïwal Lon is the most worshiped of the Lost Islands’ divinities. He was known as a preacher who became the central figure in the Valley of Nargrond. The ‘Seeds of Llyoriane’ (The Elves of the Archipelago from all origins faithful to the Islands Deities) believe him to be the son of the God of discernment and the Goddess of wisdom. They also believe him to be the Envoy of Ö, prophesied by the other Islands’ Deities in the scriptures they left on the Stone, the heart of the meteorite that struck the Archipelago. Lon was born in Ystanargrond and his mother was Lady Meoryne, a virgin maiden of House Dol Valra. He was educated by Rowë Dol Nargrond and subsequently began his own ministry, preaching his message orally and often being referred to as ‘Lon the Wise’. He was killed in his youth in the mines of Oryusk, where he disappeared with Rowë and three other Elves after a clan Myortilys raid. Unlike his unfortunate companions, who were butchered by the Dark Elves and whose corpses were later spat out by the river, his remains were never found. Lon debated with fellow Elves on how best to use the knowledge the High Elves inherited from the Gods, performed incredible masterworks, taught in parables, and gathered followers. After his death, his disciples believed that he was the Envoy of Ö, and the community they formed eventually became the Temple of Light. Most ‘Seeds of Llyoriane’ believe that Lon enables Elves to be reconciled to the Gods. The great majority of the ‘Seeds of Llyoriane’ worship Lon as Demigod of Light, the incarnation of Ö, the Sun, and the One above. His discourses, teachings and prophesies were gathered by his followers in a sacred compilation of scrolls, named the 'Lonyawelye'. This book of lore states that Lon himself never claimed divinity. Eïwal Lon’s symbol is a rising star upon a night’s sky.
Vars is the Deity of hunting and the Divinity of war and strength. He is the son of Leïwal Sorm and Gweïwele Inatea, and the second consort of the Llewenti Queen Llyoriane, father of the five matriarch sisters Llyvary, Llyandy, Ernaly, Llorely and Avrony. Eïwal Vars was a member of the six Deities who rebelled against the assembly of the Gods about the fate of the Elves. He is honored as one of the creators of the last refuge of the Elves, the Lost Islands. In Llewenti mythology, Eïwal Vars is known for having rescued his future consort, Queen Llyoriane, from Eïwal Myos’ grasp. Assisted by Eïwal Ffeyn, he defeated his rival by casting him into the depths of the principal volcano of Nyn Avrony, thus provoking its extinction. Legend tells of his love for his daughters, and he is said to have offered to his first-born the forest of Llymar, a vast wood of pines that he created on the northern shores of Nyn Llyvary. His direct line descendants are the current ruling matriarchs of the five lesser clans of the Green Elves and therefore of all 'dyl' of noble bloodline. His war against the Giants sent by Gweïwal Agadeon to punish the rebel Deities of the Lost Islands is detailed in many songs and poems of the Green Elves. One of the Chanun Mountains’ peaks in Nyn Ernaly bears his name ‘The finger of Vars,’ in memory of the fight that prevented the Giants’ invasion of the Lost Islands. Eïwal Vars gave to Aonyn dyl Llyvary, the Elf he consideredd like his son, four prized artefacts which are the heirloom of the line of Vars. He is meant to have personally made the helmet, shield, armour and spear carried by the Protector of the Forest, the chief of the Llewenti clans’ armies. After the death of his consort, Queen Llyoriane, Eïwal Vars departed to the Secret Vale he had designed for her tomb, somewhere hidden in the mountains of the Lost Islands. It is said he refused to give back her body to Eïwele Llyo so that Llyoriane could be reincarnated within the forest. Instead, Eïwal Vars chose to remain in the Secret Vale and guard Queen Llyoriane's remains. The legends say that only in times of the greatest need for the Green Elves, the true heir of Llyoriane will be able to summon Eïwal Vars back to the side of the clans of the Green Elves. Eïwal Vars is associated with the hunt, with woodlands and with wild animals. He is meant to have the power to talk to and control animals. The Green Elves seek his protection to survive in wild and harsh places. He teaches his followers the art of hunting, including archery, travelling with stealth and hiding in wild places. He watches over the borders between the wilderness and orchards, and seeks to maintain the balance between them. He hunts not to the sake of killing, but to maintain the balance of nature. He does not enter into close combat with foes, but rather tracks them and shoots from a distance. Oak groves and deer are especially sacred to him. In the Lost Islands, the cult of Vars is almost as old as the coming of the Green Elves to the Lost Islands’ shores. His symbol is a spear with an emerald blade, and his animal is the stag.
Myos is the Deity of illusions and shadows, and Divinity of art, poetry and pleasure. He is the son of Leïwal Baos and Leïwele Sysa. In Llewenti mythology, Eïwal Myos is known as the first consort of the Llewenti Queen Llyoriane, and as the father of her first daughter Myortilys, who then became the matriarch and ruler of the first Llewenti clan, the Dark Elves. Eïwal Myos seduced Llyoriane soon after the arrival of the Green Elves on the Archipelago, but this idyll did not last for long. Eïwal Myos imprisoned his consort, Queen Llyoriane, after she expressed her wish to regain freedom. The Llewenti queen called for help, and the other Deities of the Islands came to rescue her from the evil grasp of her divine companion. Eïwal Myos was defeated by his rival Eïwal Vars, assisted by Eïwal Ffeyn. He was cast into the depths of the principal volcano of Nyn Avrony, thus provoking its extinction. Eïwal Myos is meant to have been chained at the bottom of the crater ever since. The city of the Dark Elves, Mentodarcyl, was built inside that crater, so they could worship the divine captive. Eïwal Myos’s myth has somewhat waned overtime. He who proclaimed himself Deity of illusions and shadows, and divinity of poetry and pleasure is nevertheless fanatically worshiped by the first group of the Green Elves, the Dark Elves of clan Myortilys. He inspires mistrust and fear in the five other clans of the Green Elves. Besides, the proximity of his prison causes concern to the High Elves for if Eïwal Myos' worshippers gain enough power, there is a chance the Dark Elves will release him from his bondage and return Myos to the Lost Islands. If this threat was to materialize, the Archipelago would have to undergo a repetition of the struggle between the Islands Deities, with an uncertain outcome. When Vars walked with the Elves, he appeared as an adolescent with a beautiful human face. Myos looked asexual but was always referred as 'He' by his followers. Eïwal Vars' symbol is a mask adorned with jewels, and his bird is the buzzard.
Llyi is the Deity of fountains and Divinity of love, beauty and the arts. She is the daughter of Leïwal Nelo and Leïwele Layi. Eïwele Llyi is revered by the Green Elves because she brings beauty and prosperity to the innocent; to those with pure hearts. Their matriarchs even say that Eïwele Llyi judges Elves by their intention and purpose, not by their deeds. The cult of Eïwele Llyi enjoys and promotes the arts, and has an instinct for protecting the weak. Beauty is the obsession of the Green Elves, such is the curse that Eïwele Llyi bestowed upon them. Unfaithful and changeable, Llyi is usually said to have had many idylls with other Deities and even Elves. Legend says that Eïwal Ffeyn, Deity of freedom and rebellion, tried to seduce Eïwele Llyi. She escaped his advances, fleeing along a river with her lover, a great water spirit named Eïwal Ty, son of Gweïwal Uleydon. Ancient Llewenti myths suggest that, sometime after, Eïwal Ffeyn offered her a gift worthy of her admiration, a gorgeous bay and beautiful port in northern Nyn Llyvary. His magnificent gift earned him a passionate kiss from his muse. The future white temple of Eïwele Llyi in Llafal is thought to have been built at the exact place where the two Deities had embraced. The ‘Nyemonyangava’, which can be translated as ‘The colours of the Veil shine upon us all’ in lingua Llewenti, is a pilgrimage, in which Elves travel to Nyn Ernaly and rediscover the island’s Llewenti roots. These Elvin pilgrims set out to witness 'the Veil', a mystical manifestation of Eïwele Llyi’s power. Each year, to carry instructions, grant favours and deliver revelations, the Deity of beauty and arts sends forth the Veil, a vast congregation of butterflies whose colourful flight can restore hope into Elvin hearts and inspire artists and poets. The phenomenon can occur at any moment and in any location across the island over the course of the summer. Priests of the white temple guide pilgrims across Nyn Ernaly’s roads and paths, relying on signs they can interpret from the flight of single butterflies, which they use to find that year’s location for the divine apparition. The season of Eïwele Llyi is known as the four months corresponding to spring in the Llewenti calendar. Guards of her temple dress magnificently in white cloaks and silver mail, bearing one of the symbols of Eïwele Llyi’s cult, a multicoloured butterfly. Her colour is white, her symbol is the jasmine flower, and her bird is the butterfly.
Llya is the Deity of nature and Divinity of fauna, flora and fertility. She is the daughter of Leïwal Nelo and Gweïwele Lyfea, and the most prominent of the Lost Islands’ divinities. She is also known as ‘The Mother of the Islands’. Llewenti legends tell how, long before any Elf set foot upon the Lost Islands, Eïwele Llya found refuge on the Archipelago to join her lover Eïwal Ffeyn. Soon followed their many offspring, including firebirds, hippogriffs and griffons. The Deity of the wind had fled the wrath of the Gods. Nevertheless, he was eventually captured and imprisoned by Gweïwal Uleydon in the ocean’s depths. Gweïwal Agadeon sent one of his sons, Eïwal Ursto the Storm Giant, to capture and rape Eïwele Llya. She then fathered the evil race of Nisty Giants against her will. When Eïwal Ffeyn discovered that a Storm Giant had captured his beloved spouse and held her prisoner, abusing her at will, his fury knew no bounds. Eïwal Ffeyn finally prevailed against the Storm Giant and his sons: sons whom the giant King had forced Eïwele Llya to provide for him. After the wars between the Deities and the Giants, it then took many centuries for Eïwele Llya to haul up the sunken debris and repair the broken landscape. But, thanks to her patient labour, the substances she siphoned from the earth’s core eventually healed the land. What at first had seemed like a hopeless endeavour was, one day, accomplished. The revival of the Lost Islands is now considered to be her greatest deed; she poured her immortal heart into that annihilated place, reversing all the suffering it had endured. Eïwele Llya planted giant trees, the Eïwaloni, so that she and her sisters could breathe the vivid air of the forests from their great subterranean sanctuaries. Eïwele Llya chooses one of the Elves to become her envoy and one of the Arkys of the Secret Vale, to speak out and give warnings to those who do not abide by the laws of nature. This envoy she named the 'Daughter of the Islands'. Her power is drawn from the earth, and Eïwele Llya herself is her ally. Of all Elvin religions, only the cult of Eïwele Llya remains tolerated by all factions, be they Elves or Men. That is because the Mother of the Islands is worshipped by the druids, whose circles include High and Green Elves, human barbarians and even some Men of the West. The season of Eïwele Llya is known as the four months corresponding to summer in the Llewenti calendar. Her colour is green, her symbol is the magnolia flower, and her bird is the redbreast.
Llyo is the Deity of starlight, and Divinity of dreams, fate, death and reincarnation. She is the the daughter of Leïwal Nelo and Gweïwele Kerea. Eïwele Llyo has dwelled around the Lost Islands for millennia, long before the coming of the Elves. Eïwele Llyo created lakes. From all those placid pools of clear water, scattered across the Lost Islands from the deepest wood to the remotest mountain, the Deity of dreams and fate can watch the Archipelago take shape, grow and strive. When she is represented in the Llewenti pantheon, Eïwele Llyo sits to the left of Eïwele Llya, the Mother of the Islands, as is fitting for the Deity of fate, transcendence and doom, which mark the end of the cycle of life. Llyo is said to reside in the heart of Nyn Llyvary, in great, underground halls. From inside this vast cave, she relies upon her evocative power to spread out dreams across the Archipelago, as she watches over the destinies of all Green Elves. She is represented as an ancient, withered Elvin creature, a keeper of the souls and weaver of prophecies. Eïwele Llyo alone can read the patterns of time from stones carved with lava markings that she finds deep underground. Ravens are her messengers and when they soar across the Lost Islands, the wise among the Green Elves are eager to interpret these signs, for it is believed that Eïwele Llyo knows the fate of all, and that a Llewenti death will always be foretold by the Deity herself. The matriarchs enter the temple of Eïwele Llyo to consult omens. Some say that the Green Elves will be given a death warning by Eïwele Llyo, who sends a dream that tells them of their doom. The Green Elves almost always entrust their soul to Eïwele Llyo’s care before the signs of age spoil their appearance and diminish their ability to enjoy life. They celebrate Eïwele Llyo with spiced wines and colourful smoke displays. Llewenti tradition dictates that the bodies of the dead must be returned to Eïwele Llyo’s care. Priests of the Deity of fate will normally place bodies into pools, lakes or basins, which are thought to be part of the Eïwele Llyo’s domain. The souls of those that suffer violent death are gathered by Eïwele Llyo in great underground halls and reincarnated into nebulous spirits that dwell freely. They take the form of dryads or other leafy, tree-like creatures. Llewenti priests are taught that unnatural waves going against the flow of rivers signal Eïwele Llyo’s passage, as she travels through her underground halls deep below the Arob Nisty to wander the Lost Islands, searching for the lost souls of dead Green Elves. Priestesses of Eïwele Llyo prepare the old Elves for their end. The Deity of fate and reincarnation’s clerics explain how to interpret their dreams and musings. Worshipers of Eïwele Llyo revere the moon; it governs their souls just as it controls the ocean’s tides.
The grey temple’s priestesses also celebrate funerals and guard the material remains of the dead. Their power to weave illusions and practice divination is deeply respected by all. Her priests play the harp, immersing themselves in vivid waking dreams and commune with their Deity across the two worlds. Llewenti myths convey how, for a few months at the end of each year, Eïwele Llya visits her sister’s underground halls from which she commands the dreams and fate of the Green Elves. During the winter, therefore, the Mother of the Island’s power retreats from the Lost Islands; life and fertility drains away from the land and the forest alike. It is during this period of decay that the two Deities combine their mighty powers to renew the cycle of life upon the Lost Islands. They breathe new vitality into the trees and the plants, and also into the souls of their followers who have fallen. And so that cycle of life resumes once again. The generous magic of the Archipelago conjures the fecundity of nature upon the Lost Islands again and again. The season of Eïwele Llyo is known as the four months corresponding to winter in the Llewenti calendar. Her colour is grey, her symbol is the orchid, and her bird is the raven.
Pantheon of the Blue Elves
There exist no written records of the ancient myths and legends associated with the Irawenti people. The Blue Elves' language was not a written language until modern times, and, as such, the entirety of their religious beliefs is passed down through word of mouth only. As such, accounts of the various Gods and related myths and legends can vary from one locale to the next, and the regional differences may be so extreme as to completely redefine the role a specific Deity plays in the Irawenti belief system. During the early Second Age of the High Elves a large number of Irawenti clans were largely assimilated into Hawenti society and their belief system altered or replaced by Hawenti Mythology (due in large part to the work of Queen Aranaele after she seized power in Essawylor). Most of the Blue Elves will have one patron Deity whom they trust to guard and guide them through life, but Blue Elves will also prayto whichever member of the Hawenti pantheon rules the given situation. Several of the core beliefs including the three stars and the Stone are nevertheless still active in many remote areas of Essawylor. As a result, the myths and legends continue to evolve to this day.
Gweïwal Uleydon: Greater god of oceans, Divinity of seas, rivers and waters
Cil: Star of the west, high in the sky, Divinity of hope and promise
Cim: Star of the sea depths, in the bay of Essaweryl, Divinity of regret
Cir: Star of the earth’s core, Divinity of despair and degradation
The Stone: The heart of the meteor that struck the Lost Islands, which contains the inscription about the destiny of the Free Elves.
The Mythology of the High Elves
Hawenti legends have an extensive mythology. It consists largely of stories of the Gods and how they interacted with High Elves. Myths often revolved around heroes and their actions, such as High King Melindro and his rebellion against the Gods, Gloren and his endless exile, Aranaele and Cim, the star of the sea depths and Lormelin the Conqueror fight against Ffeyn, the Deity of storms. Many species exist in Hawenti mythology. Chief among these are the eight Greater Gods and the High Elves, though the Lesser Gods also frequently appear in Hawenti myths which are common to the Gold and Silver Elves. Other species include Men, the nature based Free Elves (Wenti) and the half Men, the Gnomes. Some creatures in Hawenti mythology are monstrous, such as the Giants, the Demons and the Dragons. There is a unique set of Hawenti creation myth common to Gold and Silver Elves. Both groups believe that the world has been created in a specific way. It states that at first there was only a unique Almighty primordial God Creator called "Ö", who first gave birth to eight elemental Greater Gods and then gave birth to twelve more powers, the Lesser Gods. The first Deities who roamed Oron were offsprings of the tumulteous love afffairs between these twenty elder powers. Only when Oron had been completed by these numerous divine powers, were the Elves, the children of Ö, allowed to enter it. The ancient mythology of the High Elves largely survived and was added to other beliefs such as the Irawenti and Llewenti ones. Some of the more enlightened High Elf clerics have realized that the individual Gods are but facets of Ö, the One Creator who they believe to be their father, and therefore they pay homage to the All rather than to an individual power. The Gold and Silver Elves had been literate societies, and much mythology, although initially shared orally, was written down in the forms of epic poetry, known to lore masters, scholars and bards.
‘Ö’ is introduced in the "Songs of the Lost Islands" as the Supreme Being of the universe, creator of the world and of all existence. In all Elvin languages of the Hawenti, Morawenti, Llewenti and Irawenti nations, ‘Ö’ means ‘The One above.’ The symbol of Ö is the sun. Ö, as the sole supreme spirit, is transcendent and completely beyond the world. He first created a group of divine beings, called in all Elfin languages ‘the Gweïwali’, or the Greater Gods. He granted them ‘The Flow’, a divine energy channeled by his power. These eight holy spirits created the world through their elemental powers. Ö then created the independent Leïwali, twelve mighty spirits born from his mind, responsible for channelling his emotions to his future children. And these twenty powers gathered and formed the assembly of the Gods. Soon, they decided Oron was not complete as none but themselves could enjoy its beauties. So the children of the Gods were created. Some were direct offsprings of the Gweïwali and the Leïwali and they became known as Deities and Demigods. But many other living beings and humanoid races were directly fashioned by the Gods and given sapience by Ö: powerful creatures such as Dragons and Demons where born from the fire of Gweïwal Narkon and Giants and the race of the Gnomes were created by Gweïwal Agadeon. Animals arose from Gweïwele Inatea and plants were fashioned by Gweïwele Lyfea while Gweïwal Uleydon gave birth to the fishs and Gweïwal Zenwon to the birds. All sorts of creatures and monsters came into being from the Gods' imagination. Only the origins of Men were veiled in mystery though some suspected Men to be creatures of Leïwele Sysa, the Goddess of strife. Long had things that brought joy to the other Gods made Sysa more bitter and she wished to have children of her own. Meanwhile the Gods and their children were joyous and content and dwelt peacefully in the Dawn of Oron until, at last, Ö created the Elves. ‘The Seeds of Ö’, as the Elves are called in the 'Songs of the Lost Islands', arose in the Mainland by the shores of the Inner Sea.
The Gods and Goddesses of Oron are personifications of the spirit of Ö. Each has his/her own sphere of influence, though there is some overlapping. The Gods and Goddesses of Oron are believed to be usualy involved in running the world of Oron and rarely thought to come to the aid of Elvin worshipers in person. THey have been known to send messengers or manifestations of their elemental spirit to favour members of their flocks. These messengers frequently take the form of their master or mistress and some Elves have believed they have talked with or seen the actual God. The mere presence of such envoy is enough to awe the most powerful Elf into submission. Since the time of the war of Elements, when the very existence of Oron was threatened, the Gods are commonly believed to never intervene personnaly as a new divine conflict could threaten the world with anihilition.
Zenwon (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Zen’ meaning ‘Air’ and ‘On’ meaning ‘Divine’) is the Greater God of air and thunder in all Elvin cults; he rules heaven as 'King of the Sky'. Zenwon is the first divine being that was allowed into the world by Ö, thus is reckoned as the eldest of the Greater Gods and as the most powerful. In most traditions, he is represented as a chaotic power whose influence is perceived as ambiguous. Unfaithful and unpredictable, Zenwon is usually said to have fathered many Deities and Demigods. The oracle of Llafal states that one of his lovers was said to be Leïwele Sysa, Goddess of strife, by whom he fathered Eïwal Ffeyn, the Deity of storms, worshipped in the Lost Islands as Divinity of freedom, rebellion and anger. His other passing loves resulted in many godly and heroic offspring. Gweïwal Zenwon is respected as the heavenly king and lord of thunder. He is called the ‘Cloud-Gatherer’ or the ‘Master of Hurricanes,’ and is generally reckoned to be the power who controls all air across Oron. The winds, airs and birds are his servants. Gweiwal Zenwon commands and protects all of the creatures that fly, and they will obey his wishes. Gusts, whirlwinds, and clouds are demonstrations of his influence. Gweïwal Zenwon is the principal source and wielder of Sapphire High Magic. It is said that rain results from his frequent fights with his brother, Gweïwal Uleydon, Greater God of Water, over control of that powerful source of High Magic. Temples and shrines to Gweïwal Zenwon are not common among any of the Elvin nations and very few have chosen the Greater God of the sky as their Patron Deity. He is frequently depicted by Elvin artists in a threatening pose: standing, striding forward with his bow levelled in his raised left hand and seizing, with his right hand, arrows of lightning from his quiver. He has azure eyes, and often appears dressed in a light blue cloak that reveals most of his strong body, surrounded by strains of Sapphire High Magic. He lives in the clouds above the highest mountain of the Gods’ Isle and sees all. Gweïwal Zenwon’s symbols are a long bow and a quiver full of arrows of lightning.
Agadeon (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Agad’ meaning ‘Earth’ and ‘On’ meaning ‘Divine’) is the Greater God of Earth in all Elfin religions, he who rules the Underworld. In Elfin mythology, Gweïwal Agadeon is regarded as one of the chief architects of the world. He was second in majesty of the other Gweïwali, after Zenwon, Greater God of Air but before Uleydon, Greater God of Water and Narkon, Greater God of Fire. Gweïwal Agadeon is often portrayed by the Hawenti lore masters as evil rather than passive, but his role is nevertheless to maintain relative order. He is depicted as cold and stern, and he holds all of his subjects equally accountable to his laws. Gweïwal Agadeon is also a God of knowledge, sometimes worshipped as representing skill and craftsmanship, who is also associated with stone and metal. Gweïwal Agadeon is given lordship over the matter that composes Earth. He is a master of all the crafts that shape it. Formidable in battle, Gweïwal Agadeon proved his ferocity during the War of Elements that shaped the world. He is known to have defeated Gweïwal Narkon and imprisoned his younger brother in the Earth’s core, where his fiery rage is now contained. Feared and loathed, he is known as stern, cruel and unpitying, but also as just and lawful. He is the Greater God most similar in power and outlook to Narkon, who he always has always seen as his competitor. There was long strife between Agadeon and Narkon, both before and after the creation of the world. Agadeon, however, hesitates to fight Narkon, for fear of the damage that his volcanoes, Demons and Dragons wrought to the world. Along with Narkon and Zenwon, Gweïwal Agadeon argued against his brother Uleydon, advocating to welcome the first Elves. He taught the High Elves his lore and crafts. The High Elves first became his apprentices, but eventually turned away from him, breaking their oath and choosing exile in the Mainland. After the High Elves betrayed their oath to the Gods and chose war and exile, he became a fearsome figure to those rebels who still lived. He fashioned the 'Halls of the Dead' within the entrails of the world, an unseen realm to which the souls of all High Elves killed in battle must go upon leaving the world. No Elf would ever swear an oath in his name, and all avert their eyes when making sacrifices for him. Gweïwal Agadeon is the principal source and wielder of Amethyst High Magic. With a possessive but lawful character, Gweïwal Agadeon chose two of his Sister Goddesses as consorts: Gweïwele Lyfea, Greater Goddess of plants, Queen of trees and Lady of flora; and Gweïwele Inatea, Greater Goddess of living creatures, Queen of animals and Lady of fauna. He always remained faithful to his two wives, though the inverse was not true. Gweïwal Agadeon is the father of many Deities, such as Eïwal Ursto, the Storm Giant, who is known in the Llewenti legends to have captured and raped the Deity Eïwele Llya, Mother of the Islands, and fathered the evil race of Nisty Giants. Gweïwal Agadeon is known to have personally formed the race of Gnomes. After the emergence of Men and all the damage they did to the world, Gweïwal Agadeon created his own race of beings, the Gnomes. He made them short and unyielding, and not willing to endure the domination of others, especially Men, as well as embodying some of his values and desires for the world. Gnomes believe that after they die, their spirits retire to the Halls Gweïwal Agadeon has set aside for them. Gweïwal Agadeon is rarely depicted in artwork. He has a muscular body, a dark beard and is presented as a stately figure standing before an iron door. His limbs are massive, his muscular arms seem to easily support the weight of Oron. His skin is the colour of granite and is as hard. His attributes in pictoral representations typically include a terrestrial globe and a key, which both represent his control over the underworld and acts as a reminder that the gates of the Halls of the Dead are always locked, so that the souls of High Elves cannot leave. He lives in a great underground fortress, made of iron and amethyst, deep in the earth below the Gods’ Isle. He spends most of his time in his dark realm. The principle centres of his worship are the cavern cities of the Gnomes or the Giants. His temples are always below ground and usually carved out of living rock. The Greater God of Earth will grant to some of his devout followers the ability to walk through tunnels and caverns without loosing their way. Gweïwal Agadeon’s symbol is a flail, with a cylindrical head causing an earthquake.
Uleydon (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Uley’ meaning ‘Water’ and ‘On’ meaning ‘Divine’) is one of the four Gweïwali in Elfin mythology. He is Greater God of all waters, King of oceans and Lord of tidal waves. Gweïwal Uleydon was one of the chief architects of the world. Of all the Gweïwali, he ranks third in majesty, after Zenwon, Greater God of Air and Agadeon, Greater God of Earth and before Narkon, Greater God of Fire. He is meant to be closer to Zenwon but has also frequent dealings with Agadeon. Narkon remains his natural enemy. He always distrusted the Greater God of Fire and feared the destruction volcanoes could bring upon his own creations, which are the world’s streams and rivers. Gweïwal Uleydon ensures the fluidity and versatility of water on Earth, blending it with air to form clouds, freezing it into ice, running it along rivers and mixing it in with all aspects of the natural world. All bodies of waters are under his government: bays, rivers and even the water under the earth. It is through these channels that he keeps in touch with the events of the world, and thus knows more of the goings on with the Seeds of Ö than even Gweïwal Zenwon, for it is said that Gweïwal Uleydon travels along the very veins of the world. Gweïwal Uleydon is the principal source and wielder of Aquamarine High Magic, and he is also known to covet the Sapphire Flow, which is the object of frequent struggles with Zenwon. Gweïwal Uleydon seldom comes to the assembly of the Gods, and only when in great need. He prefers to reside deep in the Oceans. Gweïwal Uleydon is a major god of several Elvin civilizations, including the Irawenti and the Llewenti nations. Since the pre-Llewenti Age, he has been venerated as a chief God in Essawylor. Gweïwal Uleydon is protector of seafarers and of many Irawenti cities and colonies in Essaweryl Bay. In the Lost Islands, he is worshipped, second in importance only after the pantheon of the Archipelago deities. In most Elfin traditions, he is represented as a lawful power, concerned about the world’s harmony and the flow of water so that it irrigates fertile lands. Thus, his influence is perceived as good. In his benign aspect, Gweïwal Uleydon is seen to be offering calm seas. When offended or ignored, he supposedly strikes the ground with his harpoon and casts his net, causing the tidal waves that frequently bring about drownings and shipwrecks. Like other Gods who can influence Elves, Gweïwal Uleydon has the power to cause certain forms of mental disturbance. Texts from Irawenti sailors who navigated across the Eastern Ocean (also called the Sunrise Ocean) blame him for certain types of epilepsy. The few Irawenti sailors who took the route towards Gweïwal Uleydon’s Gates and returned reported strange tales of enchanting mists and bewitching songs that intoxicated the mind and induced a lethal stupor. Gweïwal Uleydon has a lawful character, and is said to have had only one lover.
His consort is Eïwele Fitye, who is the Deity of meerschaum, the daughter of Gweïwal Zenwon, Greater God of Air, and Gweïwele Menea, Greater Goddess of Seasons. Gweïwal Uleydon named his spouse Sea-Goddess. She is the protector of all who venture onto the seas and is worshiped jintly with her consort, at a smaler shrine in the same temple. She is known to grant smaller favours, the most common being to keep ships afloat in a storm.
Gweïwal Uleydon is the father of many Deities. He is thought to have fathered the famed Eïwal Ty, the Deity of waterfalls, known for his love affairs with Eïwele Llyi, the Archipelago’s Deity of fountains, beauty and arts. Eïwal Ty is responsible for all the creatures which dwell in the fresh waters of Oron. His powers are aligned toward protecting and preserving the ecology of his domain. He is able to purify stagnant or brackish water for his followers. Eïwal Ty has already appeared as a comely Elf swiming in the water with blue eyes and silver hair. He occasionally assists Elvin travelers in crossing deep or swift rivers.
Not all of Eïwele Fitye and Gweïwal Uleydon’s children were Deities. One of their offspring is a legendary creature known as the leviathan, which travels the Sea of Isyl, south of the Lost Islands. Gweïwal Uleydon has always loved both High and Free Elves, and after their banishment kept the High Elves ever in his thoughts, despite the other Gweïwali’s wrath. He defended them at the assembly of the Gods, when other godly powers advocated retaliation against them. He initially opposed his three brothers’ plan to bring the High Elves into the Gods’ domain and offer them immortality. Furthermore, he always paid close attention to the destiny of the Free Elves, the Wenti, until he finally chose to become the Patron God and Protector of the Irawenti clans, one of the seven nations of the Wenti. Sailors generally pray that Gweïwal Uleydon grants them a safe voyage, sometimes drowning horses as a sacrifice. In Irawenti art, Gweïwal Uleydon is often shown almost naked, barely covered by a cloak made of shellfish. If his manifestation issues from a body of water, the being's feet and legs will be merged with the water. Other appeareances of GweïwalUleydon's messengers are Elvin fishers walking on the water, pillars of water or fountains. His temples are Always located near a large body of water and will have a fountain or stream Inside. His largest group of worshipers are the Blue Elves on the southern coasts of Essawylor and the Demi-High Elves of House Dol Urmil on the northern shores of Nyn Llorely in the Lost Islands. In times of need, GweïwalUleydon has been known to grant the abilities of waterbreathing or water walking to favored devotees. The Greater God of Oceans is often associated with dolphins who, according to the Irawenti religion, are reincarnations of those Blue Elves who died in combat to honour him. The harpoon and the casting net are his traditional weapons. In Queen Llyoriane's tales, the Sunrise Gates are described as his domain. He lives there in a palace on the ocean floor, made of coral and aquamarine. Gweïwal Uleydon’s symbol is a casting net creating a tidal wave.
Narkon (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Nark’ meaning ‘Fire’ and ‘On’ meaning ‘Divine’) is one of the four Gweïwali in Elfin myth. He is Greater God of Fire, King of volcanoes and Father of Dragons and Demons. Narkon was the least powerful of the Gweïwali and the last to enter the world from the outer void. He soon turned to chaos and became the definitive antagonist of Uleydon, from whom all life in the world ultimately stems. Narkon is the principal agent of destruction in Oron, and his influence lingered in the world even after he was cast into the Earth’s core at the end of the War of Elements. Before the creation of the world, Narkon, dissatisfied that Ö had granted him only the fourth rank among the Greater Gods, complained with vehemence. Ö, mindful of the balance between the Greater Gods, entrusted him with the Secret Fire, his most dangerous power. After he entered the world, Narkon immediately sought to dominate his other brothers and was soon frustrated that they would not recognize him as leader, despite his wielding Secret Fire. In scorn and rage, Narkon set about ruining and undoing whatever his mighty brothers had created. He was drawn to terrible extremes of violence: scorching heat, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, breaking and burning anything he set his sights upon. His destructive power was so great that, at first, the other Gweïwali were unable to restrain him individually. It seemed impossible that Oron would ever achieve a stable form, until Zenwon, Agadeon and Uleydon united and tipped the balance. Driven out by their combined might, Narkon brooded in the darkness of the under dark, digging deep into Oron’s heart and constructing there great pits, as the Earth’s core was marred by darkness and rivers of fire. Imprisoned and unable to reach the world’s surface himself, Narkon focussed his will on sending forth his creations; Dragons and Demons acted as avatars for his own fiery self. Narkon is considered by most Elfin people as the God of smiths, craftsmen, metals, metallurgy, fire and volcanoes. As the smithing god, Narkon was worshipped in the manufacturing centres of the early cities of the Gold Elves. His cult was then abandoned. Gweïwal Narkon is the principal source and wielder of Ruby High Magic. Narkon is described in mythological sources as chaotic and ugly. He was depicted as a misshapen Elf with crippled feet, the results of his fall into the Earth’s core following his defeat by his three godly brothers. Clad in living flame, his head is crowned by a fiery diadem adorned with rubies. Gweïwal Narkon is often represented as walking with the aid of a stick. The ‘Scions of Narkon’ are the Dragons, or the ‘Anari’ in lingua Hawenti. His favourite sons, the Dragons Fyranar, Klyanar and Ancalyngyanar, known as the 'Three Dragons', are the inspirators of an evil cult among tribes of human barbarians. Fyranar, Klyanar and Ancalyngyanar are some of the most powerful beings that have manifested on Oron. They are as mighty as Deities or Demigods. Their coming, a mighty demonstration of Narkon's curse, is a byword for great disasters and only very few weapons made by the Elves would harm them. Gweïwal Narkon's other messengers manifest themselves as beings surrounded by small flames. While no formal center of worship exists in the Elvin world, some of his secret shrines are meant to be hidden underground near rivers of lava. The gift Gweïwal Narkon often bestows to his rare followers is the ability to walk through fire without being burned. Narkon’s symbol is an erupting volcano.
Kerea (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Ker’ meaning ‘Time’ and ‘Ea’ meaning ‘Sacred divinity’) is the personification of Time in Hawenti philosophy and late mythology. She is worshipped by Elves as the Greater Goddess of Time, Queen of the celestial wheel and Lady of doom. Kerea governed linear, chronological time, which according to the High Elves means setting the right moment for an event to occur. She is referred to in many Hawenti scribes’ work as the ‘Mother of Time’. Gweïwele Kerea is the principal source and wielder of Diamond High Magic. This Greater Goddess is often depicted in Elvin temples as an old, wise woman turning a wheel. Her grey hair are extremely long, reaching almost to her ankles. It is in constant motion as though tugged by gentle breezes. Other forms in which she appears include misty figures of vapor or fog, usually with a vaguely feminine outline. One theory goes that Kerea represents the destructive, ravaging power of time, which consumes all things, a concept that is illustrated by the future consuming the past. The major centre of her worship is in the Gods' Isle, although shrines to her, built by High Elves who fear her influence (Kerea can make one believe that suicide is the answer), can be found throughout the Lost Islands and Essawylor. Though it has always remained veiled in mystery, Gweïwele Kerea is believed to be the mother of the race of Men. All of the places sacred to her worship have one thing in common; they are roofless and open to a chasm. Gweïwele Kerea's symbol is a circle.
Menea (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Men’ meaning ‘Path’ and ‘Ea’ meaning ‘Sacred divinity’) is the personification of Seasons in Hawenti philosophy and late mythology. She is worshipped by Elves as the Greater Goddess of weather, Queen of the moon and Lady of stars. She is one of the most powerful Gweïwely. The Lady of Stars actively opposes the nefarious schemes of her sister, Gweïwele Kerea, and her temporal powers to destroy. After the war of Elements, Menea used her powers over the Flow to set glowing fragments in the night sky to give light to the world while the sun ruled the sky in other lands. The moon and the stars she created serve as guards against the return of the devastating War of Elements between her four Brothers. Menea is sometimes said to be the fairy godmother of the Demigod Eïwal Lon. Gweïwele Menea is the principal source and wielder of Moonstone High Magic. Her symbol is a full moon on a night sky sparkling with stars.
Lyfea (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Lyf’ meaning ‘Plants’ and ‘Ea’ meaning ‘Sacred divinity’) is the Greater Goddess of Plants, Queen of trees and Lady of flora in the Elfin pantheon. In her domain are all the plants of Oron and she can make any land be fertile or barren, as she chooses. She is the sister of Inatea, Menea and Kerea, and is one the two spouses of Gweïwal Agadeon. Lyfea is the creator of all plants; it is she who planted the very first seeds in Oron. She is the lover of all things that grow in the earth, and all their countless forms she holds in her mind. In order of reverence, Lyfea is next to Kerea and Menea among the Greater Goddess, for she entered Oron third, after the War of Elements and the defeat of Gweïwal Narkon, her greatest enemy. She is the consort of Gweïwal Agadeon but also developed great love for his two other brothers. The Silver Elves of yore sang in their songs of how the roots of her trees loved to drink the waters of Uleydon, and how the winds of Zenwon liked to speak words of romance into her leaves. Gweïwele Lyfea is the principal source and wielder of Emerald High Magic. When represented in the form of an Elfin maid, she is tall, heavily built with an ample bosom, and robed in green. Her servants will appear as Dryads or animated trees. She can confer special blessings to those Elves faithful to her teachings, farmers and gardners, granting them the ability to pass though tangled plants, or the power to step within a living tree and remain there, safe and undetected. Lyfea’s symbol is the magnolia tree.
Inatea (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Ina’ meaning ‘Living beings’ and ‘Ea’ meaning ‘Sacred divinity’) is the Greater Goddess of living creatures, Queen of animals and Lady of fauna in the Elfin pantheon. She is the sister of Lyfea, Menea and Kerea, and is one the two consorts of Gweïwal Agadeon. Lyfea is the mother of all animal races. She is the lover of all beings that live on earth, and all their countless species she holds in her mind. In order of reverence, Inatea comes last of the Greater Goddesses, for she entered the World long after the War of Elements. Inatea is one of the two consorts of Gweïwal Agadeon. She conceived with the God of Earth all animals that roam on land. She also entered into affairs with his two other brothers, giving them a numerous children. All species of birds are the fruits of her union with Gweïwal Zenwon, while all varieties of fish derive from her liaisons with Gweïwal Uleydon. Inatea is the personification of the spirits of the animals. She has the power to call, communicate with and command any of the animals that move upon Oron. It is to her that their spirit returns when an animal dies. Most Elvin hunters ask her permission before going on a hunt and apologize to the spirit of the animal after it is killed, praying for the slain creature to return to her mistress. Without these rites, followers of Gweïwele Inatea believe the animal's spirit would not be reborn into another animal's body. Eventually their world would run out of animals. When represented in the form of a lady, she is strong, heavily built with an ample bosom, and robed in brown. Gweïwele Inatea is the principal source and wielder of Pearl High Magic. She is meant to be able to influence the luck of the hunt, and can grant her worshippers the ability to run as fast as a galopping horse. Gweïwele Inatea’s symbol is the deer. She fell in love with these creatures which were her first children and hold them sacred.
Vauis (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Vauis’ meaning ‘Intelligence’) is God of discernment and Master of crafts in the Elfin pantheon. Vauis has his own palace on the God’s Isle, where his workshop and library are situated. It is he who crafted much of the magnificent equipment of the Gods, and almost any work imbued with divine powers that appear in early Elfin myths is said to have been designed by Vauis. Vauis, who is also a skilled blacksmith, created the twenty thrones of the assembly of the Gods. Vauis fathered several children with mortals and immortals alike. According to the Lost Islands’ mythology, one of those children was the Elfin seer of the Archipelago, Lon the Wise, whose divine mother was thought to be Leïwele Sa, though his Elfin mother was a maiden from House Dol Valra. After his disappearance, Lon became worshipped as Eïwal Lon by the Seeds of Llyoriane, the religious Elves of the Archipelago. Among those High Elves who accepted the Gods’ gift of immortality, the Golden Elves became the favourite students of Vauis. Before breaking his vows, Rowë was one of his greatest pupils, and from him he learned the High Magic derived from gems through craftsmanship that is now forgotten. This would eventually lead to the creation of the fabled swords of Nargrond Valley, the greatest feat of handiwork within the history of the Lost Islands. Leïwal Vauis’ iconographic attributes are the book and the balancing scales. His bird is the owl.
Kor (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Kor’ meaning ‘Force’) is God of Strength and Master of bravery in the Elfin pantheon. He is the greatest of the Lesser Gods, a paragon of masculinity, and the champion of the assembly of the Gods. He embodies the physical valour necessary for success in war. In the early Hawenti Kingdoms of the North, he was still worshipped as master of bravery, with whom the noble Dol often identified. Extraordinary strength, courage, and physical prowess were among the characteristics commonly attributed to him. Kor was an extremely passionate and emotional individual, capable of doing both great deeds for his friends and of being a terrible enemy who would wreak horrible vengeance upon those who crossed him. His iconographic attributes are the sword and the axe. His animal is a hound.
Nelo (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Nelo’ meaning ‘Charisma’) is God of Charm and Master of arts in the Elfin pantheon. He is one of the most important and complex Lesser Gods in Hawenti mythology. The paradigm of charisma, Nelo has also been variously recognized as a god of music, poetry, and the arts in general. Nelo is the father of the three half-sisters, Llyi, Llya and Llyo, Deities worshipped by the Elves of the Lost Islands. Nelo is considered the source of knowledge embodied in the poetry, lyrics and myths that were related orally for centuries in the High Elfin culture. He was later adopted by the Llewenti clans as a part of their pantheon, and for them represents the divine power that inspires an artist, musician, or writer. He is the father and inspirer of the five Demigods and Demigoddesses who embody the arts and inspire creation with their magic. As director of their choir, Nelo functions as the patron God of music, dance, mime, writing and poetry. Among the High Elves who accepted the gift of immortality, it was the Silver Elves who became Nelo’s favourite students. Vauis created his cithara for him, and the instrument became Nelo’s most recognizable symbol. His bird is the quetzal.
Sorm (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Sorm’ meaning ‘Dexterity’) is God of agility and Master of physical prowess in the Elvin pantheon. He is the god of war in Hawenti mythology. He is one of the twelve Lesser Gods, and the father of Eïwal Vars, the Deity of hunting, worshipped in the Lost Islands. In Hawenti literature, he often represents intelligence in war, which include dexterity, experience, military strategy and command, in contrast to his brother Leïwal Kor who, as a God of fighting, symbolizes the physical, violent and untamed aspect of war. In the God’s Isle, Sorm was viewed as a model soldier: his resilience, physical strength, and military intelligence were unrivalled. Sacrifices were offered to him. An ancient statue, representing the God in armour, marked the entrance to his fortress. It symbolized how victory and martial spirit were to be prized in the Gods’ Isle. The extent of the Gold Elves’ admiration for him is indicative of the cultural divisions that existed between themselves and the Silver Elves, their Hawenti bretheren. After they broke their vows to the Gods, the High Elves were particularly afraid of Sorm, who they considered a dangerous force: destructive, insatiable and overwhelming in battle, a sworn killer of Elves. Sorm plays a relatively limited role in Llewenti mythology’s literary narratives, though his numerous love affairs and abundant offspring are often alluded to. His son, Eïwal Vars, claims that he is the God most hateful to him. No doubt this hatred between father and son played a part in Eïwal Vars joining Eïwal Ffeyn to rebel against the assembly of the Gods. Sorm’s symbol is a helmet; his animal is a wolf.
Ceres (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Ceres’ meaning ‘Skill’) is God of ruse and Master of oration and wit in the Elfin pantheon. The High Elves consider Ceres as the God of mischief and lies, and patron of traders and thieves. Ceres is a fickle, utterly unpredictable God, who is liable to change his opinion at will. While Ceres is generally depicted as a male of Elfin nature, he is able to take various appearances. He is described as quick and cunning, moving freely between the God’s Isle and the Mainland. He has been viewed as the protector and patron of thieves, oration and wit, invention and trade, travellers and migrants. His symbol is a pointed nib. His animal is the fox.
Baos (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Baos’ meaning ‘Exhilaration’) is God of frenzy and Master of unforeseeable events in the Elfin pantheon. He is counted among the Leïwali but is the last of their number. Baos is also the God of ritual madness and rustic music. Wine has always played an important role in Elfin culture, and the cult of Baos was the main religious focus for its unrestrained consumption. The earliest images of Baos show him as a sensuous, half-naked and androgynous youth. He was seen as the protector of those who do not belong to the elite. Thus he symbolizes chaotic phenomenon which escapes Elfin reason and which can only be attributed to the unforeseeable actions of the Gods. His wine, music and dance free his followers from self-conscious fear and care, and subvert the oppressive restraints of the powerful. In Llewenti mythology, Eïwal Myos is presented as a son of Leïwal Baos and Leïwele Sysa. The Archipelago’s Deity of illusions and shadows is meant to have inherited his chaotic nature from his father. The pipe and wine glass are characteristic of Leïwal Baos’ iconography. He is often shown riding a bull, wearing a zebra skin, and may also be recognized by the flute he carries.
Sa (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Sa’ meaning ‘Wisdom’) is the Goddess of wisdom and Mistress of just cause and balance in the Elfin pantheon. Sa is portrayed as having a calm temperament and moving slowly to anger. Sa prefers to use wisdom to settle predicaments. She encourages Elves to use intuitive wisdom rather than anger or violence. During the early First Age of the High Elves, the role of Goddess of philosophy became a major aspect of Sa's cult. She is the patroness of all spiritual disciplines. Sa is also the Goddess of knowledge and learning. She represents consciousness, education and enlightenment. She stands for truth and is known to be tough and incorruptible. Sa appears in Hawenti mythology as the patron and helper of many heroes, including those who followed the High King Melindro into rebellion against the Gods. In Hawenti myths, she never consorts with a lover, nor does she ever marry, earning the title of ‘Sa the Virgin’. However, a remnant of the Lost Islands’ myth depicts her as the divine mother of Eïwal Lon, through the loving attentions of Leïwal Vauis. Not only is Sa the opposite of Leïwele Layi in love affairs, but she is above all the polar opposite of Leïwele Sysa, the goddess of strife. Her symbol is a silver triangle. Her animal is a bear.
Vha (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Vha’ meaning ‘Honour’) is Goddess of loyalty and Mistress of honour and duty in the Elfin pantheon. In ancient Hawenti literature, Vha is portrayed as the patron goddess of heroic endeavours. The metalwork of weapons also fell under her patronage. She inspires heroes as the embodiment of the disciplined, brave side of war, in contrast to her brother Leïwal Sorm, patron of military strategy, and to her elder brother Leïwal Kor, famed for his violence and strength. Vha is the Goddess of purity and justice. She represents intelligence, humility and power. She stands for moral values and is known to be clever and independent. Though Vha is the Goddess of war heroes, she disliked fighting without purpose. The Goddess approves of fighting only for a reasonable cause, or to resolve conflict. Her symbol is an iron shield. Her animal is a lion.
Layi (from te Ancient Hawenti: ‘Layi’ meaning ‘Beauty’) is Goddess of beauty and Mistress of seduction, love and pleasure in the Elfin pantheon. In Hawenti mythology, the other Gods feared that Layi's beauty might lead to conflicts, through rivalry for her favours. And indeed Layi followed her own inclinations, and had many lovers, both Elves and Leïwali, such as Nelo, the father of her daughter, Eïwele Llyi, one of the divinities of the Lost Islands. Devotional offerings to Layi can include fruit, flowers, sweet sparkling wine and pastries made with honey. Her symbol is the golden rose. Her bird is the swan.
Sysa (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Sysa’ meaning ‘discord’) is Goddess of strife and Mistress of retribution and affliction in the Elfin pantheon. Sysa's opposite is her sister, Wia, whose Hawenti translation is ‘Harmony’. Legends say that the Deity of crafts, Leïwal Vauis, preferred Wia and never granted his favours to her sister Sysa. Since that humiliation, Sysa's wrath has been relentless as she did not inherit a mighty lover over which to rule. Leïwele Sysa is harshly spoken in Hawenti mythology, as she is capable of bringing forth many evils in the minds of Elves: pains, quarrels, lies, disputes, hatred, murders and the oaths which most afflicts Elves in Oron. Her most famous sibling in the Lost Islands is the Deity Eïwal Myos, whose father is Leïwal Baos. Her symbol is the dagger. Her bird is the raven.
Wia (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Wia’ meaning ‘Harmony’) is Goddess of harmony and Mistress of peace and fulfilment in the Elfin pantheon. In Hawenti mythology, she is worshipped as the Goddess of order, concord and spirituality whereas her sister Sysa is the Goddess of Disorder. Her symbol is the silver star. Her bird is the dove.
Mnye (from the Ancient Hawenti: ‘Mnye’ meaning ‘Memory’) is Goddess of memory and Mistress of doom, patience and commitment in the Elfin pantheon. Mnye is thought to have been granted the distinction of ‘Elder Leïwele’, because memory was so fundamental to the oral culture of the first High Elves; they deemed her one of the essential building blocks of civilization in their creation myth. In Hawenti mythology, bards and poets receive their powers of speech from their special relationship with Mnye. Her features are neutral and her skin is shown as almost completely white. Her symbol is the quarter-moon. Her animal is the snake.